Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Breaking More Waves Launches New Fashion Line

Breaking More Waves is approaching its 7th full year of existence and over that time we’ve developed a loyal audience of readers and seemingly some sort of brand recognition.

To celebrate this fact, today we have some exciting news. Breaking More Waves is pleased to announce that it is entering the world of fashion, with a new range of unique branded merchandise. Each item is an entirely bespoke and uniquely crafted piece which has been designed exclusively for us by the highly rated London designer Fari Pooll. 

Readers are now able to select from a fantastic range of products that we believe are completely ground breaking in their styling. Breaking More Waves clothes, like the blog, aren’t just clothes, they’re a way of life. It’s this way of life that we will be developing over the next few months, with the launch of our own record label, furniture designs and eventually, a first for any blog, our own Breaking More Waves live, work, play housing units on the south coast of England.

We’re incredibly proud of this fashion range. The attention to detail, the colours, the materials, everything has been so carefully thought through and designed with love.

We hope you appreciate all the hard work we’ve put into creating these fantastic high-end products which will be available to buy very soon. You can pre-order some items right now by clicking on this link, but for now here’s just a small taster of what’s to come.

For those with a taste of adventure, wear one of our gorgeous patterned shirts or blouses, formed out of 100% sweaty polyester. £199

No expense has been spared in the design of our high quality Breaking More Waves branded bags. Ideal for shopping or just carrying around at a gig to make everyone who sees you immediately jealous. £45

This incredible fleece is the ideal thing to wear at any festival. You'll be the star in this. £189

Breaking More Waves encourages a healthy lifestyle and what better way to do so than be like Ellie Goulding and go for a run every day. These sophisticated tracksuit bottoms will make you want to be out pounding the streets forever - you'll never have looked so good. £100

For those on a more limited budget, we've thought of everything, including fantastic lifestyle accessories, such as this sexy oven glove, complete with special 'worn' look. £15

Remember this is only the start. Let us here at Breaking More Waves shape your life, not just with music, but with everything.

Tuesday, 31 March 2015

Chløë Black - Cruel Intentions

Regular readers of Breaking More Waves will have probably realised by now that there’s nothing we like more than turning pop music into a league table. “But music is art, not sport,” shout the naysayers. Yes, we hear you and understand you, but we’re sorry, it’s built into our very core and no amount of laying back on the shrink’s couch pouring out our innermost fears, or long intellectual argument and reasoning is going to change us. 

What has all of this got to do with Chløë Black you may be asking? Well cast your mind back to late last year and you might remember that Chløë’s name appeared on the UK blogger’s version of a new music league table – the Blog Sound of 2015 poll, alongside the likes of eventual winner Låpsley, runners up Fickle Friends and the likes of Deers (now Hinds), Soak and Black Honey. She also appeared on our own 10 Ones to Watch list. Of all the names on the Blog Sound list Chløë's was probably one of the more surprising, having released very little material at that stage. Yet certain blogs (we’ll put our hands up and admit that Breaking More Waves was one of them) had seen / heard enough to think ‘big potential’ and voted for her.

Today Chløë releases a new tune. It’s called Cruel Intentions and to use a sporting analogy it finds her climbing from non-league status to challenging for promotion from Division 2. “All good things come to an end, there’s nothing good about me,” she sings. We’d disagree on the second part of that lyric, for if nothing else Chløë knows how to make an epic valley straddling pop song. We also have it on good authority from somebody that met Chløë recently at a gig that she was 'very nice indeed.' And let’s remember, that whilst any talented sod can rise up to the premiere league of pop, when relegation occurs it’s the nice ones that people keep supporting. Nobody likes a dick.

Take a listen to Cruel Intentions from Chløë’s forthcoming EP and feel her power. Warning - keep a wide berth around you, you might want to punch the air when the big drums kick in. This one hits the back of the net.

Chløë Black - Cruel Intentions

Monday, 30 March 2015

Daphne and Celeste - You And I Alone (Video)

By now, if you have any passing interest in pop music and pop culture you’ll probably know that Daphne and Celeste have returned. You’ll also probably fall into 1 of 4 camps.

1. The excited ‘YES!!!’ camp.

2. The not so excited ‘NO’ camp.

3. The camp of ‘who the f*ck are Daphne and Celeste?’

4. The bemused and questioning 'why are Daphne and Celeste getting so much on line exposure?' camp.

This short post is for those of you in that last camp who are shrugging their shoulders and looking puzzled.

If you’re in the ‘who the f*ck’ camp, that is what Google was invented for.

We’re going to have a stab at explaining why we think there was a little bit of commotion yesterday about the duo’s ‘unexpected’ comeback with Daphne and Celeste and in particular why they were featured on sites such as Pitchfork, NME and Drowned In Sound, who you wouldn’t normally expect to cover such pop artists. 

We use the word unexpected in inverted commas because we’re not that surprised about this comeback; after all Celeste put out a song with Kent Odessa back in 2013 (listen here). Therefore the chances of a reunion was always a possibility - pop hadn’t been completely shunned by the two women.

If you're one of today's internet generation who has a really short attention span, then we've made this post easy for you - all you really need to do is read the 4 headings below.

1. Nostalgia and the desire for more individuality in pop. (Individuality is easier to write about).

Right now a lot of people are pretty tired of the homogeneity of pop music. As Bob Stanley wrote in his thoroughly excellent book The Story Of Modern Pop: “The first flush of the pick ‘n’ mix digital era has led to many of pop’s biggest names appearing on each other’s records: Rihanna and Coldplay; JLS and Tinie Tempah; Katy Perry and Kanye West: David Guetta and Flo Rida and Nicki Minaj. Whilst the possibilities of merging R&B, hip hop, eurobeat and rave had seemed thrilling, the results have largely been a generic blur of unchallenging rhythms and predictable song structures – the Top 40 has never sounded more samey…” 

It’s because of that tiredness that when a band from the past (be it an indie rock group like Sleater Kinney or a pop duo like Daphne and Celeste) make some sort of comeback, people who remember them get very excited, because they represent a time when pop music sounded more individualistic, both musically and also lyrically. 

We now live in an age of political correctness where most people are highly aware of the way that their comments and opinions might affect others, particularly when published online. The consequence of this is that musicians have become too scared to sing about anything that isn’t safe and therefore potentially career damaging. It’s why we get a lot of songs about being ‘in da club’ and other such beige lyrics, typically along the lines of 'girl I want you...'.  Daphne and Celeste come from a different era, when there was no fear in singing a song like U.G.L.Y  “You're so fat and ugly with a belly full of flab, when you wear a yellow coat people shout out cab,” they yelped with glee. Unpolitically correct and hurtful? Yep – but with those sort of songs and their reputation for doing crazy stupid interviews that compared to today’s media trained pop bores seemed off the hook and ridiculously career damaging, it’s no wonder that on their return websites want to feature them, because they make good copy.

2. Their Reading Festival bottling legitimised Daphne and Celeste as having some sort of cool. Therefore it's OK for Pitchfork to write about them.

Daphne and Celeste were an anomaly in the world of manufactured pop. Somehow they got themselves on the bill of Reading Festival 2000 (apparently because they wanted to meet Eminem) and got bottled, which was unsurprising at that time given the partisan nature of the Reading crowd, a few years later they did the same to 50 Cent, giving rise to debate on if those who participated were sexist and racist. Although in no way was there same amount of debate that would probably occur if this happened now. If you’ve never seen the footage of Daphne and Celeste powering their way through the bottles do take a look here. This perseverance gave them some sort of credibility with the music press. Here were two young women standing up to a barrage of abuse from a bunch of (mainly) neanderthal men and not giving in. This indie credibility carried through to the end of 2000. The now defunct Melody Maker put Daphne and Celeste’s album in their end of year top 50 – higher in the top 50 in fact than the likes of Sleater Kinney.

3. They had a cheesy bubblegum pop sound that has become oddly hip over the last few years. 

Daphne and Celeste’s songs U.G.L.Y and Ooh Stick You hit one of the most important buttons of pop on the head; they’re utterly memorable. Good or bad – that’s for your taste to decide, but you only have to hear the songs once for them to stick. But they were more than that. They set a template for a number of other pop acts with their cartoon sound. 

Some of you will probably remember Nicola Roberts from Girls Aloud - we got very excited about her debut album. Take a listen to the chorus of her song Beat Of My Drum. At the time we named it one of our singles of the year and statedIt’s both gleefully cool with its reference points (Justice, Diplo) yet unashamedly cheesy at the same time (Daphne and Celeste).”  We weren’t the only ones to love the N-Robz. Even the likes of Sean Adams from Drowned In Sound spouted off about what a good record her album was. Now in the last 12 months we’ve had the chipmunk sound of Hey QT via PC Music (a record we’re not fond of) and the brilliance of Petite Meller’s Baby Love (with its lo-fi Lady Gaga does Children In Need video) both of which have some elements of the near childlike wonky playfulness that Daphne and Celeste displayed. Of course these records may not have been in any way influenced by Daphne and Celeste but there’s been plenty of discussion on websites (not just the pop websites, but the indie ones as well) about those records, so why shouldn’t Daphne and Celeste be subject to the same discussion?

4. Clever marketing – a Sunday release / embargo

But here’s what we think the main reason is. There was a clever bit of promo going on here. First their song is recorded with Max Tundra, his first production to surface for around seven years. In fact this is really a  Max Tundra project featuring guest vocals from Daphne and Celeste. Second, it’s a half decent tune – very different from Daphne and Celeste of old. (We particularly like the footsteps beat). It's a bit artier and has no whiff of naffness. Next, the parties involved were all very willing to talk to the press about the song (keep in mind what we said about individuality being easier to write about). But most importantly, there appeared to be an embargo in place for releasing the song / interviews and that was for a Sunday - a day when hit hungry websites have very little new content.

Sunday is a very quiet day for hit hungry new content music websites – we probably get 20 or 30 emails on a Sunday about new music releases compared with the 150-250 / day we get on Monday to Friday. If this song had been pushed out on a Tuesday afternoon we suspect it would have only picked up coverage from pure pop websites. Timing for this release was everything.

So well done Daphne and Celeste. However you managed it, we’re impressed with the way you’ve got your music out there. Here’s the song, as we said earlier, it’s half decent.

Daphne And Celeste - You And I Alone

Saturday, 28 March 2015

Samm Henshaw - New Waves

Samm Henshaw is one of those artists that you’re probably going to find the words ‘classic soul’ lobbed at quite a bit. Because Samm (full name Iniabasi Samuel Henshaw) oozes the stuff. Even when he’s covering One Direction (honestly) and making it sound unrecognisable (in a good way - listen using this link) there’s a heartiness and warmth to both his voice and music that makes us want to start trotting out references like Bill Withers and Marvin Gaye. OK, that’s probably a bit over excitable, but this guy is cast from the stuff that defines talent. If we were the betting sort, we’d be putting money on him appearing on Later... with Jools Holland within the year.

Take a listen to his song Only Wanna Be With You (a free download) and remember his name. Is it too early to be starting our Ones to Watch for 2016 list yet? Maybe, but here’s a name that could be on it.

Samm Henshaw - Only Wanna Be With You