Hardcore EDM music fans have seen it before: an innovative electronic artist makes a name for himself on the club circuit and then a big-name star tweets one of the artist’s songs or, better yet, has them produce their next record. Norway-born, L.A.-based Bearson isn’t on the level of a Diplo or a Disclosure quite yet, but he’s making famous friends very quickly. Kanye’s new BFF Mark Johns is singing the house DJ’s praises and recently collaborated with him on anthemic, summertime jam “Imposter.” Though Bearson doesn’t have a full-length album out, the recent single “Pink Medicine” hinted at a penchant for dreamy, almost tropical soundscapes. The catchy chorus courtesy of singer Cal on “Want You” proves Bearson has the pop chops to play with the big names. Check him out June 17 at Rough Trade NYC while he’s still under the radar.
Before We Forgot How to Dream
Bridie Monds-Watson, the 19-year-old singer-songwriter from Northern Ireland, has been penning folky teenage symphonies under the name SOAK since she was 13. Practice has resulted in a perfect debut. From the opening salvo of “B a noBody” to the peppy, yet plaintive ballad, “Sea Creatures,” Before We Forgot How to Dream is a rich and mature record that trades in themes of alienation, bullying and loneliness. Songs like “Reckless Behaviour” however, show she’s capable of writing an all-inclusive pop song. SOAK just opened for The Lumineers, who’s to say that her June 23 date at Rough Trade NYC won’t be her last in such an intimate venue?
The Australian duo of Olivia “Liv” Hally and Pepita “Pepi” Emmerichs already has a memorable name, but it’s their ear-worm folk-pop that had critics buzzing after their 2015 CMJ Music Marathon. Out this month, their debut LP lives up to that initial buzz and has all the makings of a viral sensation. The chorus of “Doctor Doctor” could easily be dropped into a “find yourself” travel ad, while Emmerichs’ jangly mandolin keeps the beat on the spirited “Bushwick.” What’s more, songs like the Stevie Nicks-channeling “Trouble Now” and the infidelity ballad “The Situation” prove that Hally is equally adept as a lyricist. Even if the songs on Stadium Cake are never used in some clever marketing campaign, the record still has the chops to gain momentum one internet share at a time. Catch them with a full band at the Mercury Lounge on the Lower East Side on June 29.