Soft

The Q-Tip Bandits are all class in debut record "Ain't It Great"

TGIF! For many reasons, but of the oh so many perhaps there is none as cheerful as the release of The Q-Tip Bandits’ debut EP Ain’t It Great. This sonic triple-threat is as sophisticated as we have come to expect from previous Q-Tip Bandits singles, but the jazz mousse is heavy atop the group’s upbeat indie rock/pop hybrid. The title track opens up with the brass instrumentation that characterizes the group, flowing slowly past the assertive electric guitar riff at the heart of the song, the build-ups bursting to reveal cheery choruses and festive breakdowns. “What’s Your Drug” lets the full bassline of Claire Davis lead the way as Leo Son’s vocals cleave with emotion, and then you know who you are listening to. Dakota Maykrantz' chic drums provide a rhythmic foundation that adapts and delivers though each hit of the snare the passion the music demands. “The Wolf” finishes an indie rock/pop delicacy of an EP that is a glossy calling card for the talented band. Listen to Maclin Tucker (trumpet), and Stephan Tenney (trombone) make their instruments howl in “The Wolf” streaming below. - Rene Cobar, photo by Sophie Park

   

Monster Furniture detail day-to-day living on new track "Social Distancing"

The aptly titled “Social Distancing” by Brooklyn-based outfit Monster Furniture captures the feelings inherent to our new lives indoors — a lofi metronome beat, anxiety-adjacent walking bass lines, and lyrics detailing our new “curious days” convey well the inertia of sheltering-in-place, outlining both the few joys of staying home (like feeding baby carrots to the dog [as a treat]) amidst the various long sighs that fill our impossibly long days. Moreover, Monster Furniture’s inclination towards occasional melodic resolves and sweet falsetto reprieves from a predominantly downtempo, minor offering embeds the track with a sense of yearning, which paired with a lyrical grocery list of indoor-friendly activities that occupy time as we wait for the pandemic to end, seems to cautiously look on the bright side, while accepting the less-than-ideal nature of our current, sickness-stricken reality. It’s a kind, deeply human tune, and recommended listening for days spent doing the same tasks, over and over again — stream it below, alongside the other thematically similar tracks on Shred City Presents’s Quarantine Compilation.

 

   

Cindy Latin honors life's simple pleasures in new single "5 More Minutes"

So good to see the hard-working—and ever-soulful—Cindy Latin continuing to churn out velvety jazz singles dripping with the vulnerability-strength duality she balances so well. “5 More Minutes” is an honest confession of love, an ode to the simple pleasures that are best shared with a special someone. Latin’s rich blend of sonorous brass instrumentation, soft electric guitar riffs, and, of course, her ever-enchanting vocals is the perfect sonic brew for those mornings foggy with melancholic memories and bright hopes. Taking the best elements of late ‘90s R&B and modern alt-soul, Latin scores again. We cheers to Latin’s work ethic, and as always, we wish her a great 2020 to come. Stream “5 More Minutes” below for a smooth start to your week. - Rene Cobar, photo by Michal Augustini

   

Gam debuts butter-smooth record "Moments and Spirals"

Boston’s Gam is a silky smooth group with a short and sweet EP we recommend highly. Moments and Spirals opens up with “Every Second Levitates,” a funky track that unravels elegantly: the guitars range from crisp-clean to wah-tinged and swirl around warm vocals, and snappy beats. “Wait a Little” leans on its slow rhythm and oozes jazziness steady while “Sunkissed Lovers” has a serene ambiance and an R&B groove perfect for a sweet wind-down. The band is just taking flight, but already its path looks promising, and its musical colors splendid. Stream “Every Second Levitates” below to join the journey. - Rene Cobar

   

A Deli Premiere: "Midnight Escapade" by Jake Sherman

Boston’s Jake Sherman turns a mundane evening into a fireworks-filled carnival in the music video for his latest single “Midnight Escapade.” Even if only possibly in his mind, the elation of a late-night cuddle call brews throughout to the sound of his creamy R&B music. From hot harmonies to laid-back rhythms, the song is a romantic throwback to the heyday of America’s R&B vocal groups, and just in time for Valentine’s Day. Jake is in the middle of an East Coast tour titled after the track and will be performing for the first time in many of the cities listed here. Jake is revving up the feels in this latest music video, and we are thrilled to premiere it here for you below. Happy Valentine’s Day, New England! - Rene Cobar, photo by Luc Kordas