We take a look at some of the top independent artists in the UK in association with Labelled Independent, the new music podcast! At Labelled Independent, we pride ourselves on keeping our minds open. For those who may have read our contributions to Skope before, you’ll hopefully remember that the artists we recommend have only one thing in common — quality. We’re not swayed by genre, style or surface sheen, and we’ll listen to any new music, regardless of where it’s come from. It usually means our top artists at any given time are a varied bunch, and this month is no exception.
First of all, for folk fans, Flaming June’s long awaited new EP is now available. Having won awards with respected folk publications previously, the new release — ‘Rumpelstiltskin & The Perils & Promises of Womanhood’ – is a return to form for the band and songwriter Louise Hamilton. More in the traditional folk mould than some, stompy contemporaries, this is delicate roots with a positive message — 5 varied tracks each with something to offer.
Those looking for a similar light touch but with more of a pop sensibility could do a lot worse than check out the debut single, ‘Walls Cave In’, by Berenice Scott. Released on May 27th, it’s a stunningly low key offering which blends a soft, effective piano part with a clean vocal that begins delicately and grows in strength along with the song. There aren’t many UK artists who turn out this kind of melancholic pop, but comparisons have been drawn online with the likes of the USA’s Sarah McLachlan. Genuinley beautiful.
Pirate Sons are a completely different proposition altogether. Their new EP ‘233U’ is named after a flat in Edinburgh which incubates a creative collective of artists, musicians and rockers. From the depths of this bohemian existence, this trio have created an eye catching collection of pounding rock songs. Relentless, loud and dripping with quality, the four songs on this EP very rarely let up, taking the listener with them on a journey of thumping drums and distorted guitars best enjoyed at a high volume.
Working at a similar high energy level, our final recommendation this month comes in the form of hip-hop duo Too Many Ts. Now, we’re aware that hip-hop is not everyone’s cup of tea but trust us on this one — these two are something a little bit different. Their dextrous rhymes and raps are laid not over your typical electronic beats, but a varied collection of ragtime blues, funk riffs and swing motifs which give this a real unique flavour. It helps that the interaction between the two vocalists is not only seamless but genuinely funny, and their new EP ‘The TP’ is a promising introduction to their palpable charms.
Photo: Pirate Sons