(image via facebook.com/acemotelband/)
You may not know Ace Motel yet, but you will soon. Dreamy soft guitars seem to guide their sound into a sweet pop escape. The duo hails from Manchester and is comprised of vocalist Georgia Phillips and producer Kamil McCabe. I asked the band about their latest single, “Still With Me” and what their inspiration has been throughout this process.
Let’s talk about your latest single, “Still With Me”; the writing process & inspiration behind it!
“The idea for the song was inspired by the feeling of moving on in life but still keeping the people you love around you no matter what. The guts of the instrumental came about first; we wanted to produce something for the EP that had an all-consuming, pulsing vibe – something more upbeat but would still maintain the generally laid-back nature of the rest of the EP. Once Kammy had composed an instrumental we were happy with, the lyrics honestly came naturally and was very much a collaborative process because of the experiences in life we’re both facing at the moment. The whole song came together fairly rapidly and once it was finished we definitely felt like the EP was then complete.”
Tell me about your intro to music? Did you always want to be in a band/singing?
“Throughout his teens, Kammy played the guitar and dabbled in production. I have always sung but never considered pursuing it as a career until I began singing and writing with him. When we met at uni, we started doing open mic nights together before he really delved into production and we began writing and recording our own music. From then we’ve continued to produce our own songs, and the EP consists of some of the major work we’ve made this past year.”
How would you describe your sound?
“Atmospheric, authentic and laid back; we like to produce an organic, clean sound that, when played, is recognizable as ours. We love music that blends all kinds of unique sounds, and so aim to achieve a similar vibe in our own music.”
Where did the name Ace Motel come from?
“It took us about a year after we formed as a band to actually come up with the name! It was ultimately adapted from one of our favorite lyrics from one of our favorite songs, ’33 God’ by Bon Iver, where they mention the Ace Hotel. The lyrics to that song always stuck with us, so we thought it was perfect to derive our name from that. We even went to visit the actual Ace Hotel in Downtown LA a few weeks after deciding on the name.”
“Ace motel is going to continue making music. Unfortunately, however, I’m going off to pursue my own passion project, so, for now, my time with the band is over. However, Kammy is going to continue the band independently and we’ll have to wait and see what direction he takes it in, but definitely be excited. Ace Motel has just begun.”
(image via ticketfly.com)
The New Jersey-native released her Romeo & Juliet inspired album last June, titled, hopeless fountain kingdom. Brimming to the surface with themes of love, betrayal, friendship, and so much more. Each song spoke to a different piece of the puzzle we call love.
Halsey appeared from behind a large white sheet, ethereal in an all-white getup decked out with a lace veil. The crowd of twenty-somethings screamed in admiration as she belted the opening track, “Eyes Closed”. Her bright blue hair bobbed around as the dramatic visuals behind her set the mood.
She sings, “I can put on a show” from “Heaven In Hiding” and boy, can she ever put on a show. Massive screens behind the singer showcase various artistic elements that enhance the themes we hear in each powerful song. Buzzing bugs, kaleidoscope colors, and religious symbols illuminate the stage. Halsey has remained the same throughout the years; a lyrical mastermind who knows how to execute beautifully. She twirls, stomps, and dances around to tracks you forgot you could even dance to (listen to “Don’t Play” with the bass up as high as it’ll go). hopeless fountain kingdom’s “Alone” had the crowd bouncing as if there were trampolines beneath our feet.
A sense of female empowerment could be felt miles away from the stage. With Halsey recently breaking the news of her relationship with rapper G-Eazy ending, she seemed to give fans a dose of her current reality. “I want you to know, it’s okay to be alone,” the singer confidently says into the mic, “I’m learning it again this week.” She went on to give a supercharged performance of “Don’t Play” featuring a choreographed stomp in shallow water, and a call & response exchange with the loud crowd; “WOMEN, DON’T PLAY NO GAMES!!” over and over. Hand me the torch, I’m ready to run around the world chanting that.
Halsey’s voice is already unique, but hearing her live is a different story. Frequent harmonic interludes and prolonged outro’s made the singer seem even more of a pop star by the second. Her drummer (tucked in by the corner of the stage) amplified each track to feel more organic and less like a guy in the back hitting a play button on a soundboard. Songs like, “Closer” (by The Chainsmokers), “Now Or Never”, “Bad At Love”, and “New Americana” had fans screaming from the rafters. It felt as though she couldn’t have done more if she tried – she did it all and has mastered this tour.
To see Halsey on tour, click here!
(image via consequenceofsound.net)
“Summertime Magic” and “Feels Like Summer” couldn’t be more summer if they tried. Play this out on your boat and slowly feel all your worries slip away. Gambino captures the full essence of summer in two fresh new tracks he fittingly calls the Summer Pack.
“Magic” features a slight electro/tropical beat while Gambino sweetly sings, “is it summertime magic that makes me wanna dance all night long?” A dance-esque pulse soon takes over. Try NOT to dance. I dare you.
“Feels Like Summer” has a smooth retro feel to it. This one could’ve been plucked right out of the 70’s with pleasant oo’s and aa’s echoing in the background. If you play the two songs back to back, you almost can’t tell the difference; it just feels like one continuous stream of playful soundscapes.
(Image via youtube.com)
Drake’s return to rap is nothing short of triumphant. A 25 track album couldn’t be more poppin with hot beats for the summer (and a few spilled secrets to fuel the gossip columns). Since there are so many to listen to, here’s a list of my favorites off Scorpion.
“8 Out Of 10”
“Nice For What”
“Ratchet Happy Birthday”
“In My Feelings”