Hailing from the musical landscapes of Hadeland in Norway, Progressive/Alternative collective Polyphonic Exophilia (abbreviated as PPXP) are comprised of several elite musicians with years of collective experience under their belts. On top of being a band, they also run a fully functional recording studio as well as an independent label, operating as a unit that is 100% authentic and DIY – doing just about everything themselves. Known for their very progressive Alt-Indie signature sound, the PPXP collective has put together a dynamic EP series that is comprised of three releases that will take place throughout 2021, and their debut effort from this series is their debut EP ‘Volume 1’.
Solidified as chapter one of the EP series, ‘Volume 1’ is comprised of four anthemic tracks and sequences that really showcase PPXP’s musicianship factors, production value and artistic merit. Each song offers up several flavorful soundscapes that put effective spotlights on each member’s ability as well as the band’s collective style. Opening track “Crocodile Tears” is a perfect example of their progressive formula with several genre textures which includes their Alt-Indie flavor alongside diligently crafted Jazz, Fusion, and Funk elements. This track has an insatiable groovy rhythm section and utilizes dynamic tempos and time signatures that really add crucial elements of their writing style. The lead instruments contain crafty guitar melodies, atmospheric keyboard leads and smooth solid bass lines that tie it all together. The song has a jammy feel with several measures of buildup that eventually lead to a powerful climax, giving the listener a sense of anticipation that is very engaging as well as exciting as the grooves play out. The unique skat-like vocals are cleverly written alongside a melodic duel female vocal, really adding to the flavorful components that are heard throughout the track’s duration. Overall, this track starts the EP out very strongly and also sets the tone for the rest of the record as well.
Second track is “Omoi”, another dynamically rhythmic track with a more uptempo groove. Once again we have a heavy presence of keyboard and guitar leads that really lead the way in terms of melody and progression. This track also has atmospheric and spacey textures, giving the song significantly more ambience in the overall aura. This track is a little more subtle, but is just as effective and well-written. Third track “Post-Traumatic Growth” is another jazzy and atmospheric track that highlights more of the band’s dynamic vocal leads and melodies. Their charismatic approach on this track is cleverly executed and really adds several multi layers to the mix. It’s another brilliant chapter to the EP that highlights PPXP’s signature sound. Closing track “Even Monkeys Fall Out Of Trees” is a groovy number that effectively ties the EP together into one solid anthem. This song combines almost every element from the previous three and still offers up touches of new flavors. The simple yet groovy bass line really carries a lot of weight on this track alongside an ambient piano melody that highlights the song’s key signature. This is also another jammy tune that plays out with solid buildups and climaxes, keeping you engaged with every instrument from start to finish. It’s a brilliant closing track that will easily entice you to start the EP over again for another round of each song.
This debut EP really puts PPXP on the musical map and is a record that is completely ahead of its time. Their craft is very multifaceted and versatile throughout each track’s duration and really highlights each members’ ability in several crucial ways. This EP will definitely have you anticipating what the other two subsequent EPs have in store – but regardless, it has insatiable staying power and will easily become one of your favorites of 2021 so far. ‘Volume 1’ released in June and is currently available on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and several other digital music streaming platforms.
Bronx, NY’s Natalis is no stranger to the musical world. The crafty and versatile singer has appeared on albums with J. Cole, Kanye West and a slew of other industry heavyweights over the years, is a 2-time Grammy nominee and has multi-platinum status. She has built an insatiable name for herself and continues to thrive in the game with her hypnotic vocals and multifaceted image; raising the bar with every project she gives herself to. But on top of everything she has appeared on with other prominent artists, Natalis herself also has her own solo releases that truly give every listener a full visceral listening experience, allowing the world of music to get to know her much more exclusively. One of those releases is her most current album ‘Good Fridays’, a Christian, high spirited record with a brilliantly crafted R&B signature sound with a futuristically modern approach.
Released last month on April 2nd, ‘Good Fridays’ is a 7-song record that shines a spotlight on faith and spirituality in a way that truly encompasses the concept of a higher power and love for the Lord as something greater than ourselves. Produced by Mr. Foster and Davis Chris, the album’s opening track and first anchor single is “Sin Duda”, a hypnotically ambient track that plays out kind of like a dream sequence. This anthemic and atmospheric song really showcases Natalis’ visceral vocals and parallels the lyrical concept beautifully with the diligently-placed harmonies and spiritually crafty melodies. The song structure has a very modern aura with tastefully blended layers, ambient swells and brilliant touches of atmosphere; delivering a powerful track that captures a true essence of spirituality. Second single is “But God”, a much more rhythmic track with a dynamic beat structure that tastefully blends a classic R&B approach with textures of electronic and EDM sensibilities. Once again, we have another beautifully performed track with several crucial vocal harmonies and key melodies that really showcases Natalis’ range. It’s definitely a single that’ll entice any listener to dive deeper into her discography and definitely sets the tone for the rest of what this album offers. Her breed of R&B is very next-level and both of these tracks are direct evidence.
Both singles, as well as the rest of the ‘Good Fridays’ album, are available now on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes and several other digital music streaming platforms. Natalis is definitely not a singer to sleep on by any means and you’ll be more than happy you gave her a listen. It may be your first, but definitely won’t be your last.
Italian Pianist and Composer Lorenzo Carulli began his journey into the music world during his younger years and quickly began hitting the ground running with both his writing and performance abilities. Over the years, his original compositions have successfully garnered him a vast array of achievements including scholarships and awards from national and international music contests like Fondazione Estro Musicale, FM Contest, and Call for Concert Musicopaideia. Now, with the recent release of his debut album ‘Present Past’ on April 16th, Carulli’s signature writing/playing style comes to the forefront in 8 anthemic and dynamic tracks that diligently showcase his versatile realm of musicianship factors, production value and artistic merit.
‘Present Past’ is a dynamically crafty album with melodically visceral piano compositions that are atmospheric, versatile and multifaceted. Throughout the album’s duration, Carulli brilliantly parallels both performance and production value in a way that showcases his skill set as a solo artist most effectively. It explores several angles of his artistic merit and truly brings his signature sound to the surface in a way that balances originality and familiarity; encapsulating melodic measures and rhythmic tempos throughout all 8 tracks and offering several tasteful elements as they all play out.
This debut record is beyond impressive and will undoubtedly build anticipation for any listener wondering what Lorenzo Carulli will have up his sleeve with subsequent releases. It’s a strong and solid first impression that will caress the eardrums of any musician with a music theory background, as well as fans of piano-oriented compositions altogether. ‘Present Past’ is a triumphant album that fully deserves your undivided attention. It officially released on April 16th and is currently available on Spotify and several other digital music streaming platforms.