Independent singer/songwriter Kev Minney began his musical career at the age of 30. Battling with a stutter, Kev had to overcome severe stage fright to get performing. Fueled with drive he spent the first two years practicing 6 hours a day before going to work as a guitar teacher in the evenings.
"I have an obsessive nature, when I want to achieve something, I think of little else, everything around me relates to what I'm focused on," he explains.
In 2015, when NASA's New Horizons was broadcasting photographs of Pluto, Kev was hooked. "I was in awe at how science could take us as far as 322 light minutes to the most distant planet in our solar system. At that point it felt like that's how far I was travelling to achieve my artistic ambitions.”
Now in 2017 Kev is announcing his astronomically inspired debut album, ‘Stories of the Sky’ and beautiful video-single "Like I Always", produced by the Mercury-nominated Jag Jago.
"Like I Always" documents the anxiety that affects a person trying to beyond his/her horizons. Minney explores this state of mind and the challenges it poses. He takes a sensitive but positive stance, showing how to tackle fear: resilience and determination get highlighted and their importance is driven home through the chorus.
The accompanying video (filmed by Kenny McCracken) is a visual tour-de-force. Beautifully shot in black and white, the video vividly illustrates the song’s message. Shadow, light leaks and dreamlike blurring evoke the emotions, whilst time-lapsed shots of unfurling flowers show that life finds a way.
The process of creating the album has proved a rollercoaster of excitement, involving collaboration with an impressive array of musicians, video teams, artists and so forth. Without the backing of a record label, Kev worked hard to pitch his project to the Arts Council who granted him an award in 2016, enabling him to make the album independently.
“My whole record is based around space themes,” Kev told Acoustic Presents Mag. "Even though not all of the songs are about a specific physical event in space, I intentionally used the language of science to present an emotional landscape. It's imperative, that our generation finds a way of emotionally connecting with what’s going on scientifically in and around our planet. Emotion is what inspires change."
While the music is important, Kev also believes strong visuals enhance the songs. “The visual has a double impact when folks first listen to the songs. If they can see and hear it, they’ll probably feel it a little more too.”
Tafari Anthony's new single "To The End" was created according to him for anyone pushing to accomplish their dream while working through their own self-sabotage.
"Over the course of my childhood and adolescence, I realized I was gay. I felt pressured by my family and the industry to accept that I would have to become what was expected of a young black man. With the expectation of fitting into the status quo, I focused on a more urban R&B sound, where I began to find some local success.
However, that success came at a price and I found out quickly that hiding my true self from those I loved was taking its toll on my personal life and inevitably my music. I found some relief when I started to meet writers and producers who didn't feel the need to force me into one specific genre but instead encouraged me to discover and explore many forms of musical expression. It was during this time I started to become more comfortable with myself musically, which ultimately lead to becoming more confident in my personal life.
I attribute my recent accomplishments to overcoming those expectations placed upon me by others and I’m grateful for those who helped support me to find the courage and confidence to live honestly with my convictions."
"Leave Behind" is the first single out of Sarah Cripps' new record.
"During the making of this album, I was going through a turbulent transition in my life. I was struggling with the perception of who I thought I was supposed to be, and who I truly am. It left me feeling pretty dark at times. It was making this record that helped me decide I would embrace the darkness and the weirdness. I pulled myself out of the perfect box I thought I had to fit into. I found a way to create my own narrative and not subscribe to the one that is often forced on young women. Although ‘Leave Behind’ is a reflection of losing myself and some of my lowest moments, ultimately, it’s the turning point that gave me the guts to just embrace the weirdness."
Iskwe has always gravitated towards darker, deep-cut, bottom-heavy sounds, it’s what resonates with her creativity - politically charged lyrics, dark soulful R&B rhythms, electronic flourishes, and trip hop breakbeats. This is captured fully on her new single Soldier . The single comes from her new album The Fight Within, out October 13 2017.
"It's impossible to know what shape our planet will be in several generations down the road. What I do know is that we need to do better. Soldier is for all the protectors of our land, our water and our future generations. While my music is undoubtedly a source of deep, personal strength for me, it is also a form of protest––protest against the continued hardships of the North American Indigenous community, protest against flippant legislature failing to protect our lands and waterways, and protest against fallout women face when speaking out on issues within the music industry. I speak my mind about my culture and gender. I’ve never been timid or shy about addressing those sorts of topics in my music because that’s not my spirit - I was raised to be loud about the things I believe in! I intend to honor my heritage and stand steadfast in my viewpoints while creating music that rings true to myself as an artist."
"TRE is a music composer and producer from India. He has a very chilled vibe to his tracks with some fresh new sounds to his electronic music work. The music created by TRE has a great composition value with his chilled melody tunes and sweet Bongo work. This perfectly gives a great summer vibe to his tunes. He recently remixed an official track with Texas Pop/Rock band "January May" for the track "The Road". He is definitely on his way to create more new sounds with his electronic project TRE."
A combination of retro aesthetics, enduring lyrics and alt-rock grit.
The best music happens when artists refuse to remain stuck in their own comfort zones and creative boxes. Whenever this happens, they are free to give full range to their vision, and they can really come up with something that’s groundbreaking and personable. This is certainly the case here with Tommy Red and his brand new EP release, “I Wanna Be Exploited.”
Marva Von Theo is an Electropop / Synthwave duo formed in 2016 by the Athens-based singer-songwriter Marva Voulgari and the Vienna-based composer-producer Theo Foinidis.
Their Debut Album “Dream within a Dream” was released early in 2018. The 12 songs on their Album, lean towards an electronic sound that incorporates a variety of influences ranging from the music of the 80’s until today. Darkwave sounds, Jazz harmonies, Rock and Dance drum beats resonate together and mature into something darkly romantic.