Groover Playlist 161 | Unusually Entertaining

Masked metal? Pagan rock? Witch folk? You'll hear them all here — and plenty more.

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Alien metal? Pagan rock? Witch folk? You’ll hear all of them and more in today’s submissions from Groover, a platform that connects artists with critics like me for a small fee. You can (and should) follow me on Spotify HERE, check out my Top 200 playlist HERE, or listen to it via the widget at the lower right of every page on this site. If you want to be in an upcoming playlist, go HERE. But first, check out these unusually entertaining offerings:

 


Suggestion | One Man Enter (Two Men Leave)

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Death Funk.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Suggestion are a Tampa metal trio. Their music combines thrash-inspired guitar riffs; extreme metal vocals; driving drum patterns and funk-inspired basslines. This unique blend has created a new genre dubbed Death Funk, which explores the funkier side of extreme metal. The members of Suggestion are often thought to be mere men in costumes, but they are in fact benevolent interdimensional beings sent to prevent worlds from breaking apart. They have had their memories altered by a nefarious alien force hellbent on preventing their mission. In the face of global lockdowns and despotic tyrants, Suggestion seek to reveal the truths that are too often hidden from humanity. Their newest release, the Think About Sects EP, shines a light onto secrets our reptilian overlords would rather leave in the dark. Many mysteries have yet to be revealed but one thing is known — the fate of humanity itself is tied to the extraterrestrial presence known only as Suggestion.”


Umwurf | Valhalla Rising

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Pagan Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Pagan rock is not only for pagan people. With great humility before the old gods, let me point out that I firmly believe in their return and awakening from their long sleep. This is what I am trying to do as a mere speck of dust in the whirlwind of earthly events. With the help of Odin, the Celtic OIW and the Slavic Gods, I may become a pebble in the grand mosaic that will one day celebrate their triumphant return. I compose and record in the kitchen.”


Saturne & Valfeu | Raidho (The Journey)

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Witch Folk.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “She calls him Faun; he calls her Shewolf. Since the fall of 2021, the French duo Saturne & Valfeu have been telling their love story in the form of dreamlike music videos, developing a fantastic universe of witch folk.”


Jaws of Brooklyn | Sugar Sugar

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: S&B / Soul.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Jaws of Brooklyn formed when Radio Raheem’s Zia Uddin (drums), Paul Christofferson (bass) and Bryan Cohen (guitar) met singer Lindsay Love in Seattle during the height of the COVID. They recorded a series of ’60s-flavored rock ’n’ soul demos in Cohen’s basement, with background vocals from Black PumasLauren Cervantes and keyboards from Funky 2 Death’s Melissa Montalto. The demos caught the ear of Alabama Shakes keyboardist Ben Tanner and Fitz and the Tantrums and Lady Blackbird writer/producer Chris Seefried. In May, the band traveled to Florence, Ala.’s Sundrop Sound and cut their debut record The Shoals.”


Bubba Brothers | Let’s Have Sax

HOME BASE: Portugal.
GENRE: Dance.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Bubba Brothers are two DJs who started their careers in early 2015. Eliseo Correia and Justino Santos are friends from Portugal who have become a regular and popular presence in clubs and festivals. The duo have produced multiple dance hits, making their careers grow at a strong and fast pace.”


Bel | Bae

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: R&B / Soul.
THE TRANSLATED & EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “I am Bel, a composer, author and performer. Bae is a dance pop / R&B song full of positive vibes.”


Adeline V. Lopez | Good Old Days

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “I’m a 16-year-old singer-songwriter. I write about being a teenager and about relationships, friends and mental health. I’m from New York City, and urban experiences are in my music, but I think that teenage hope and struggle are pretty universal. Good Old Days is about a time when I was younger — before high school — that I tend to remember fondly. But I have to remind myself about what happened during this period of my life, and how unhappy I was. Good Old Days is about romanticizing a period of your life that was, in retrospect, actually awful.”


Sïan Able | The Choice Is Yours

HOME BASE: Belgium.
GENRE: Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Sïan Able is the solo project of Anaïs Elba. In 2016 she released her first EP Hekla, the name of a Icelandinc volcano buried under ice. With her second EP Healing Waves, she emebraced her roots as a classical pianist while pushing electro-soul to the max. Her songs tackle raw emotions and reveal the intricacies of her shameless darkness. With her upcoming album Veni Videi Sensi, Sïan Able worked with all the passion that characterizes her in the hope of touching as many hearts as possible. The Choice Is Yours is a cry from the heart about our decision-making power. It’s a colourful summer single that is full of positive vibes.”


Aphyxion | Not Gonna Make It

HOME BASE: Denmark.
GENRE: Metal.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Aphyxion are not ones to succumb to genre definition — over the past few years the band have been perfecting and pushing their sound far from their death metal heritage. Today they unveil Not Gonna Make It, a solid slab of melodic metalcore that rivals those of their more renowned counterparts. This band keep moving boundaries, for themselves and for their ever-growing followership. They were the youngest band ever to play at Wacken Open Air and have also had the opportunity to support the likes of Metallica, Soilwork and Soulfly, playing more than 450 shows all over Europe.”


Artmin | Solex

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Rap.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Thanks to a skipper father, Artmin spent part of his childhood in the Caribbean. When he makes music, he tries to get closer to all his madeleines de Proust — the colours and atmospheres which shaped his dreams very young. In this new single, Artmin takes us on his Solex into the middle of nature, where he feels good. His Paris Lagune EP is out on June 24.”


Emeye | Space

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Synth-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Constantly in evolution, experimenting, eclectic and avant-garde, Emeye is the link between the real and the virtual world. Their origin is unknown — they have no religion and sexuality. They move in the present, they’re ahead of time, they forget the past. Emeye is him, her, them. The Earth is Emeye. The stars are Emeye. Am I Emeye? I define this single as an example of antithesis: A love that destroys and doesn’t unify. A lot of humans do not know how to listen to their heart, and unconsciously they prefer to be trapped in toxic relations that put them in a black hole. This seems to be a further example of my eclectic art and anti-art — a swinging journey between seriousness and lightness, reflection and free from care.”


Phil Cerda | Vivre Libre

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Country-Rock.
THE TRANSLATED & EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Phil Cerda is a singer from the south of France. His influences were the great American singers: Elvis, Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi. His album Vivre Libre arrives in stores in September. It’s a rock album influenced by the American alt-country scene (Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton). Vivre Libre is a hymn to freedom of thought and expression — a choice of life that everyone has the right to express as they see fit. It’s an ode to freedom! Everyone can identify with this.”


Marco | Sun Will Shine Anew

HOME BASE: Italy.
GENRE: Pop-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Sun Will Shine Anew has a classic rock sound to send a positive message of hope in finding our own way home in a world time full of troubles. It has a succession of different moments — high and low, fast and slow, electric guitars and strings — for a deep impact.”


Until 9 | Skin

HOME BASE: United Kingdom.
GENRE: Folk-Metal.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: Until 9 let their music do the talking.


Jahmatics | Enough

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Dancehall.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Brooklyn-based Jahmatics is a math and science educator and new dancehall artist looking to do things differently. He blends vocals melodies with rap, dancehall and reggae. Many of his songs are educational. Jahmatics’ music also incorporates upbeat pop and hip-hop, and his tracks offer a splash of international flavour.”


Quiet Sonia | No Weeping Melts The Armor

HOME BASE: Denmark.
GENRE: Chamber-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Quiet Sonia are a Copenhagen chamber-rock septet performing the compositions of songwriter and guitarist Nikolaj Bruus. Blending indie rock, folk, post-rock and shoegaze — with inspiration from jazz, techno, ambient and modern classical — their sound is a kaleidoscopic, multi-coloured, almost mosaic-like listening experience, brimming with details and rewarding repeated listenings. Bruus’ playing and songwriting pays homage to introspective songwriters such as Nick Drake, Tim Buckley and Elliott Smith, and the almost-spiritual or devotional quality of guitarists like Robbie Bashoe and John Fahey. At times pitch black, anxious and somber, at times hopeful, dreamy and majestic, their music is always characterized by an emotional urgency; a search for musical catharsis; a wish for communicating something deeply powerful and moving, from severe sonic attacks and harsh punishing bursts of sound to ecstatic beauty and pure bliss.”


Peter Lake | Sweet Abyss (What If I Need You?)

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Pop-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Peter Lake is a New York City singer-songwriter who revels in anonymity. His musical influences include Curtis Mayfield, Motown, Billie Eilish and Rüfüs Du Sol. Therefore, it’s no surprise that he has not stuck to one genre, dabbling in rock, pop, indie and house. “This is a song that describes how my soul was amputated,” he says. “The great love of my life’s soul, and my soul, had become one. One soul, one light. I really believe this. But a sickness developed. Much like an arm or a leg sometimes needs to be cut from the body to save the body, our souls had to be cut in two to save this person, my fiery friend. She needed to be saved. I tried everything else to save her. Since this happened my world was blank. It felt as though I was falling into an abyss — I was not dead but I was not alive. In the end, falling into the abyss was needed. My soul had to be cut right through. What can make the abyss a sweet abyss? Because over time, things get a bit better.”


Supa Blaze | OmoOlope

HOME BASE: Nigeria.
GENRE: Hip-Hop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: Supa Blaze lets his music do the talking.


Gaïa | Flamme Jumelle

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Neo-Classical.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Gaïa is a singer and author who has been on the French scene since 2018. Her first album Confinée came out in September 2020. It contains 55 songs — corresponding to the 55 days of confinement during which she made one song per day. She is preparing her next album. “The Flamme Jumelle album is my soul in a box, the awakening of a dream and the love of making it come true,” she says. “It is also the symphony of feelings, the fusion of encounters, the beauty of a moment of eternity. It’s a wonderful story.”


Ofili | Rise

HOME BASE: Greece.
GENRE: Hip-Hop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “This project was released a few days ago. It will be a part of the soundtrack in the upcoming Disney movie Rise.”


Mass Experience | Mother

HOME BASE: Australia.
GENRE: Synth-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Pleasure And Purge is the second Mass Experience album. Sitting with Demons was about not being able to run away from uncomfortable situations or feelings, while this new album is about discovering how to heal yourself and remembering how to feel joy. This is clear based on the uplifting lyricism that Katie weaves effortlessly throughout the project. Opening track Mother allows love to pour in and force any self-deprecation to take a backseat. Listeners are caressed by the bright synthesizers and vocal messages of positivity, and dance to glitchy rawness — core elements of sound that are part of Mass Experience’s shared imagination.”


Romain Gutsy | A Narrow Fellow In The Grass

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Indie-Folk.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “This is a progressive folk song, composed to the poem of the great American poetess Emily Dickinson.”


Wick Stephens | Headshots (In The Kitchen)

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Indie-Folk.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Wick Stephens are an alt-psych-folk band from Philadelphia former by cousins Austin and James Kelly, with support on drums from Tom Lederer. Our first LP Mitigation Protocol is set to drop at the end of August.”


Maëla Raoult | Sequenza No. IX: Luciano Berio

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Neo-Classical.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Born in Brest in 1990, Maëla Raoult obtained diplomas at the conservatories of Brest, Paris and Brussels. Passionate about chamber music, she has played in various formations at many events and festivals. She deals with the symphonic repertoire in various orchestras. Curious about all musical worlds, she has studied improvisation and jazz with great personalities of Parisian jazz.”


Jitensha | Psychotic (What Are Friends For?)

HOME BASE: Canada.
GENRE: Indie-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Montreal duo Jitensha’s sound is a silvery union of honey-sweet proto-punkiness and modern indie that is harmonically reminiscent of 1950s rock ’n’ roll. Jitensha nestle catchy, poignant melodies into hard-hitting rock grooves. Lyrically focused on social justice, environment and psychology, they bring you on a winsome journey of modern human experience.”


Henry Aberson | At The End Of The World

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: R&B / Soul.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: Henry Aberson lets his music speak for him.


Vincent Bugozi | Tinga Tinga

HOME BASE: Sweden.
GENRE: World Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Vincent Bugozi is an African world-pop artist in London focused on creating positive music and energetic performances. Bugozi aims to combine different cultures, connect people through music, and help bring positivity and unity. A key goal for the band is to aid cultural integration, unity, and understanding. Seba! is Bugozi’s multilingual debut album, inspired by the famous Tinga Tinga art from his home country Tanzania. The single portrays colorful patterns and movements through different instruments, layers and melodies working together like paint on a canvas.”


Edgar Mauer | Elma Casper

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Indie-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Edgar Mauer is a man’s name, adopted by Maëve to sweep away gender issues around her music, which mixes Bristol trip-hop and Kate Bush-like pop with a resolutely modern touch. The inspiration for Elma Casper comes from mysterious writing on a wall in Paris. Edgar Mauer started imagining the life of Elma — the joy, the love, the pain — and wondered if she would also exist on a wall someday, sparking the interest of a random passerby. Elma Casper is an ode to the feelings and experiences we leave behind when vacating a place.”


Jeebrahil | Me2Human10h31

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE TRANSLATED & EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “”Fifteen – Three Days is a project carried out in three days for the soundscape of the exhibition of a Caribbean jewelry brand. It was necessary to look in the records and the inspiration deep inside me to carry out this project around my identity and my sound. It includes mixture of samples, ancestral Caribbean rhythms, hovering synths and drum machine beats.”


Maypine | Dauphin

HOME BASE: United Kingdom.
GENRE: Alt-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “U.K. quartet Maypine are a band focused on pushing the envelope and grappling with a wide array of seemingly conflicting musical influences. At the same time, their formula remains catchy and approachable, seamlessly connecting with alt-rock fans while also bringing an innovative spirit to the genre. Hailing from Brighton, this four-piece are all about bringing energy and technique to the audience without compromising on the visceral authenticity of the songs. From monolithic drum patterns to nuanced basslines and guitars that cut through the mix, the band’s sound has a special kind of drive, enhanced further by the intensity of the vocals. Dauphin covers themes such as the fear of living up to expectation, fighting off low self-esteem and coping with the high demand of a modern society.”


Billy Summer | The Test

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Pop-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Billy Summer has been ripping it up since he was a teenager surrounded by the ever-present glam and death metal of the Florida rock scene. He has played integral roles in bands such as Luxury Mane, The Semis, Blackfish and Hotel Life. Billy produces albums in an idyllic setting surrounded by swaying palm trees on the Gulf coast. His work has been placed in shows such as Ted Lasso, Nancy Drew, Broke, The Affair, and Switched at Birth. He is compelled as an artist to make music and is enticed by his love of fancy things to make it big. He currently seeks representation, praise, validation, money, help, therapy, human touch, kind words, inspiration, vacation and food.”


Cara Louise | Empty Me

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Pop-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Empty Me is a Lynchian-inspired doo-wop dystopian radio groover, as well as the leading single from Cara Louise’s upcoming LP Wholesome Dread. Aptly titled, the single is largely about feeling dissociative and drained from the daily struggles of work and maintaining relationships. Led by Louise’s powerful vocal performance, it exiss in a sonic landscape of synthesizers, syncopated drums and shoegaze-esque guitar work.”


Georgia Parker | Did You Get The Feeling?

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Indie-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Did You Get the Feeling? is the first single off my upcoming record. Artists that inspire me include Phoebe Bridgers, Dora Jar and Adrianne Lenker, for both their introspective lyricism and interesting soundscapes. I wrote this song about a crush where I was left wondering if they were feeling the same way that I was, and intended to keep the vibe and emotions thought-provoking, exciting and positive. Did You Get the Feeling? is all about the nerves, excitement and anticipation I felt around that relationship. This song was recorded in Pasadena and produced by Philip Etherington.”


DJ G-String | I Want You To Know

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: House.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:DJ G-String is a rising music artist in Chicago. She makes the crowd dance with her selective music and creates an atmosphere where the music keeps evolving and becomes alive. She loops, samples, does live mashups and beat matches manually on the fly. “I worked with TC5Official on this original track called I Want You To Know,” she says. “It was one of my first collabs with him on an original; we both had ideas, created the music, and I wrote the lyrics and sang the track as well. I think it is a good example of what it means to make some of the very best vocal house music in today’s scene. It captures the warmth that you would expect from the old-school staples of the genre.”


Ninjahtiger | Push Dub

HOME BASE: Belgium.
GENRE: Electronica.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Ninjahtiger is a composer, drummer, singer and sometimes scratch DJ from Antwerp  who loves to create music that submerges you into a different realm. Push Dub is a fusion instrumental to reset the world.”


Queency | Forbidden Fruit

HOME BASE: Australia.
GENRE: R&B / Soul.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE:Queency is a Perth-based singer-songwriter from Reunion Island. Queency’s compositions and live performances can be sweet or sour, deep or light, soft or energetic. All come from the soul and speak to the soul, generating a range of emotions within anyone listening with their heart Queency is also known as Quentin Thony, the frontman of Soukouss Internationale. While Forbidden Fruit may refer to a lost paradise for some, it has a much juicer meaning for its creator. Combining mystically suave vocals to a devilishly enticing melody, Queency gives a lesson in raw sensuality. Paying homage to our earthiest pleasures, Forbidden Fruit tastes like a moonlight tryst under the big night sky. An intimate escape to irresistibly greener pastures. A sin. A dream. A sweet, sweet version of hell.”


Alias James | Thousand Headlights

HOME BASE: United States.
GENRE: Folk-Rock.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “Lyric-driven Neil Young meets Kings Of Leon with a late-night road song about a feeling that ‘keeps on killin me.’ There’s pedal steel, acoustic and electric guitars — ‘and behind every headlight’s a world of pain like me, who would do anything in this world to get free.’ ”


Myia | Prendre L’Air

HOME BASE: Canada.
GENRE: Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: Myia’s music speaks for her.


Marceline Joe | Direction

HOME BASE: France.
GENRE: Indie-Pop.
THE EDITED BIO & PRESS RELEASE: “I am a French singer-songwriter, a melodist at heart. My music finds itself somewhere in the pop landscape, but my influences range from Elton John and James Taylor to Nat King Cole and Sara Bareilles. Direction is the first single of my eponymous forthcoming EP, which was recorded at Spotless Mind Studio with producer Guillaume Stelly. The EP tackles topics related such as the difficulty of making choices and going through change, as well as finding new horizons. This is a special song to me because I put in it everything I was feeling and telling myself, as I was going through a difficult time of my life, full of questions, fears but also hope.”


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