New Music, brought to you weekly by Deadly Music!, will generally avoid most mainstream music - unless it's particularly deadly - to give new, emerging and fringe artists a chance. Most tracks are available on a Soundcloud playlist, some of them on a Spotify playlist....both of which are embedded at the end of this column.
Owen Duff: Songs from The Falls: Testament of Love
Irish native Owen Duff is a “singer-songwriter-videomaker with a tendency to prioritise unusual chord progressions & extended metaphors over most other things.”
Owen makes highly literate and remarkably well constructed songs influenced by - among many others he mentions - Laura Nyro, Joni Mitchell, Joanna Newsom, Steve Reich, Charlie Kaufman, Jean Genet, Roman Polanski, Werner Herzog, The Smiths, Sufjan Stevens and David Lynch.
Coming out most obviously from those influences on his latest track "The Magic Mountain" are the classics from Nyro and Mitchell and the experimental artsiness of Sufjan, Lynch, Kaufman, Herzog et al. The track has an incredible warmth to it, wrapped as it is in genius song construction on a mini-epic scale.
There’s more to Duff than meets the eye though, as best evidenced in his work on the soundtrack for last year’s gay-themed movie The Falls: Testament of Love.
Duff’s two offerings from the soundtrack - available on Bandcamp on a name-your-price basis - are beautiful piano-based pieces that fans of Antony and the Johnsons and Michael Nyman’s orchestral/chamber pop work with David McAlmont will adore.
Sasha Siem: My Friend
"My Friend", the latest track by Anglo-Norwegian musician Sasha Siem, comes with some serious pedigree, having been produced by Valgeir Sigurðsson (Sigur Ros, Bjork, Bonnie Prince Billy, Feist).
Boasting such an impressive background and listing among her influences Jacques Brel, Tom Waits, Joanna Newsom, Antonio Vivaldi, PJ Harvey, Florence and the Machine and Leonard Cohen, you come to expect something special from "My Friend" and it delivers in spades.
A beautifully constructed chamber pop piece to a friend on the edge, "My Friend" is starkly unsentimental as well as intimate and heartfelt.
Real artistry making the best use of Siem’s training, "My Friend" will instantly appeal to fans of Kate Bush, Tori Amos, Michael Nyman, Hildur Gudnadottir, Antony and the Johnsons, Zoe Keating and more.
Check out four more acts and some killer playlists, AFTER THE JUMP...