Spotify release 1.0.9 continues in it’s attempt to make the product more usable. They are succeeding in adding in little niceties here and there, but at the same time have not offered anything truly innovative in a while. This release adds some aesthetic and usability features, but hasn’t put a huge dent in the list of features that the user base has been clamoring for.
It’s becoming quite popular to cover Billy Idol’s “Eyes Without A Face” these days, and I’m quite OK with that. The Irish duo Electro Sensitive Behavior have given this track the synthpop treatment. While it sounds true to the original recording, the additional synths combined with a Lou Reed meets Peter Murphy vocal make this cover a keeper.
Yesterday, 80’s icons a-Ha released the first single called ‘Under The Make-up’ off of their forthcoming album ‘Cast In Steel’. A tour is expected to accompany the new album. Singer Morten Harket’s voice is as good as ever on this melancholy track that reminds us a little of ‘Lifelines’. The synths and orchestration on this track are movie soundtrack beautiful and leave us anticipating what the rest of the album might sound like.
Our recent mix of “Do You Remember – A Modern Day John Hughes Soundtrack” has taken off like gangbusters this week. Since everyone has been enjoying this theme, we decided to take it to Spotify for you. The playlist below contains songs from the first two mix volumes (note that not all of the songs from the mixes were available on Spotify).
One of my favorite albums of the mid 90s was Jamboreebop by State Of Grace featuring the songs Hello, And Love Will Fall and Smile. This was a band that I truly missed, until today. I was listening to some playlists on Spotify and heard this beautiful voice that immediate caught my attention…and it sounded oh so familiar. The band was Fatal Charm, a band that I had never heard of. I continued to listen to a few songs and after a while the sounds started to sound familiar. They were State Of Grace songs! I did some quick googling and was surprised to find out that Fatal Charm was the early incarnation of State Of Grace.
This is Volume 2 in the mix series of songs that sound like they would be included in a modern day John Hughes Soundtrack. I used a few different approaches in picking songs. Some of these songs might perfectly fit in one of his 80s masterpieces while others are guess how the sounds that he covets might have evolved over the years.
Strong Hearts is just the latest in a string of infectious synthpop jams from the Orlando duo, Priest. From the debut self-titled LP, the track will have you singing along in no time and it’s not going to leave your head any time soon.
A few months ago, Spotify removed several features that angered it’s massive customer base. They promised that most of those features would be slowly added back. Strangeways will do our best to inform you of the changes as they are made. Below is the list of changes that were included in this weeks 1.07 release.
Today the UK indie rock band Editors delivered their second new single this year. Continuing where they left off with No Harm, Marching Orders is a powerful balled that will hopefully be filling large stadiums in a town near you soon. I say “large stadiums” because I feel that it is the progression that this band is taking. In my mind, the band is hitting their stride with U2’s Joshua Tree era of songs.
This mix is made up of rare 80’s songs acquired through a friend who worked at a record store in Europe in the early 80s. The majority of these songs never existed anywhere else but on vinyl. Each one of these songs could’ve carried a scene in any John Hughes film. A lot of these songs are now forgotten forever, besides the ones who lived the era.
Admittedly, we listen to a lot of Depeche Mode-sounding bands here at Chez Strangeways, and lucky for us this German band is among the Depeche-iest. SynthDecade has a few great songs, including this one, which reminds me a little of DM’s ʺWalking in My Shoes.ʺ This song has a very late ’80s/early ’90s DM feel, including the dark uptempo feel, the vocal effects, the chord changes, and the occasional unexpected bloops, bleeps, and twang that keep it all very interesting during repeated listening.
This is volume 3 in my modern synth series which features brand new synth tracks from up and coming artists along with some new releases from more established artists. All of these tracks are synth heavy and many are inspired from the new wave era in the 80s.