Part 1 - Los Angeles
Part 2 - London
Part 3 - New York City
Forever associated with some of the most iconic dance music pioneers and guitar bands of the 1980's and 90's, Manchester's northern charm has continued to influence popular music over recent years with the likes of Everything Everything, Delphic and now The 1975. But how does Manchester's next crop fare?
Let's kick off with something a little different to that which the city is most famous for. Mat Beard, aka MTBRD is definitely not swimming with the tide right now, although he could easily side step into hip hop beat making. This Is Luv showcases his unique take on mashing vintage soul sounds with modern production. Rap flair with soul chops never sounded so fresh.
His album, BEATAPE is out now and free over at his bandcamp.
Filling the space left by reverb heavy mystery enthusiasts WU LYF, M O N E Y make an enchanting and unconventional racket which is comparable to Alt J in it's desire to straddle cinematic indie and soundscaping pop in equal measure.
Combining the city's aforementioned love of dance music and indie, Santiago Street Machine pack soaring melodies, rich textures and fat bass lines to their driving beats and the outrageously catchy Sinking Stone showcases all of these qualities. Their sweaty shows blur the lines between euphoric gigs and unforgettable club nights, their much anticipated debut album drops this summer.
Angular, gritty and packed with attitude, Findlay pack a pretty heavy punch and look the part too. They may well be the city's next big guitar exports and are making pretty big waves already.
No Ceremony/// may well be the best band to play a warehouse/sweaty club/disused train station rave. Ambient yet powerful, atmosphere and beats meet head on and, my god it's good.
Somewhere between Bat For Lashes and The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Letters To Fiesta make intently burning songs, pop songs at the core but with breathy gasps, ambience and a beautiful fragility. Statuettes is a more reflective moment which twinkles and glides with so much grace.
Singer songwriter Adio Marchant aka Bipolar Sunshine is a talented and quirky chap. Rivers could have gone down a hip hop, break beat house or pop route and in the end it does a bit of all three whilst remaining focussed and not at all messy. Spot the featured city in the video too.
Last seen battering Pat Sharp with baseball bats and setting him on fire, Shinies can write a memorable indie pop song with grungy grit and attitude to mix it with most bands who emanate from this guitar loving city.
Determined not to be just like every other Jessie doing pop, JJ Rosa is doing things her own way with a grittier approach to an indie rock popstar assault. Definitely more Hendrix than Pixie Lott, if soulful girl with a guitar is your thing you'll love this.
And finally, something to complete the diverse picture which has been so beautifully painted by these artists, Frameworks, or Matthew Brewer to his mother, specialises in rich yet relaxed, cinematic, jazz influenced soul-scapes. Music for films, music for coffee, music for a musical city.