Maybe I should retitle this blog NotableRock.com? The trend of rock guitars and energy infiltrating electro and stadium tracks continues, and the team of Carl Nunes & Jake Shanahan elevate it to a new level. Adding an emotionally-textured vocal from Shaun Frank, lead singer of the Canadian rock band The Envy, over stadium house-style dropouts makes a perfect contrast to the full-throttle aggression of the electro-with-a-rock edge production. If you are a fan of recent Hardwell/Showtek productions or the deadmau5 track “Professional Griefers,” this track is for you. The lyrics, about uniting through commonalities, are heartfelt and simple yet surprisingly well-written (let’s be honest, most toplines feel as computer-generated as autotuned vocals). The “ohh” chant is perfect for crowd sing-a-longs well. The video is quite well-done, letting us see the producers at work and the singer in the studio so that we can put a face with the name of the people making this great music.
Alexis Jordan made massive waves with her debut single “Happiness.” Effectively a topline written over deadmau5’s “Brazil,” complete with catchy humming and powerful vocals, “Happiness” topped charts over the world- including the US Club Chart. Her new single sees her delving back into clubland to discover the banging and quirky electro track “Rattle” by the Bingo Players and coming up with the gorgeously powerful “Acid Rain,” beautifully written by Sia. Alexis’ voice is the rare blend of power and pretty which enhances lyrics with subtle conviction, which is quite a challenge since the backing track features noises that sounds like ducks honking. It will be interesting to watch how this track develops in the UK, where Happiness was a major pop smash (top 3) and where the Far East Movement version of “Rattle” has already topped the chart (due in no small part to the violent duck video). Of course, the obvious solution is a mash-up, but thematically the two songs are so different that it wouldn’t make sense. “Acid Rain” showcases both the emotional and vocal power of Alexis Jordan and the strong production skills of Bingo Players, who produced such a unique and quirky track that it inspired two polar opposite vocal interpretations.
Just like yesterday’s pick “Trust In Me,” here’s another song that transcends genres. Whether you listen to the acoustic version or the electronic version, Chris James’ vocal performance of “Together We Are” is uplifting, a song about unity, powerfully expressed with emotion. This comes as no surprise as he is the one who wrote and performed the topline of “The Veldt” by deadmau5, inspired by Ray Bradbury’s haunting short story. Russian producer Arty’s stadium house production is quite moving and anthemic, so it’s easy to hear why Avicii premiered it on his radio show last month. Watch for this to become a massive clubland track on its release and one of the biggest tracks for the upcoming Winter Music Conference.