[TGIF] Safety Tracks

Catchy and soulful: A round-up of the latest best releases.

Thank God It’s Friday: We have new songs for you to listen to, discover and perhaps be obsessed about. These are new releases from the last two weeks that while we did not cover individually, we do feel play along very well with each other. So consider this our way of celebrating a proper Friday, with proper new music, from very new artists.

Augustine – Mary Cookins

Songwriter, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Augustine made a global splash with his debut album “Weeks Above The Earth” and received two Swedish Grammy nominations for Best Album and Best Alt-Pop in 2022. Borne out of a love for groovy 70s melodies, his lush blend of soulful falsetto, playful soundscapes, and melancholic stories has amassed 50M streams independently, with acclaim from outlets such as Billboard, Rolling Stone, KCRW, EARMILK, DIY Magazine, and Ones To Watch, among others. In true DIY spirit, Augustine has grown a dedicated fan base of half a million unique monthly listeners and more than 50M streams worldwide. His debut album was followed by a European tour and a dreamy cover of Cass Elliot’s “New World Coming” for Volvo’s global EX90 campaign.

Augustine has now released his first original single, “Mary Cookins,” since “Weeks Above the Earth.” With “Mary Cookins“, Augustine once again demonstrates his flair for blending retro and contemporary elements, creating a funky indie piece. The song features warm strings, trippy synths, and a throwback funky guitar that shimmers throughout the verse, all guided by Augustine‘s hazy vocals. The lyrics of “Mary Cookins” explore the question of identity, revealing a sense of duality through a split personality that alternates between carelessness and anxiety. The song effortlessly fits within Augustine‘s dream-like aesthetic, maintaining the mesmerizing sonic formula that garnered widespread acclaim since his debut album.

Azu Yeché – High Table

Azu Yeché is an exceptional artist with a distinct creative vision, serving as a singer, songwriter, and performer. His music is a unique fusion of soul with subtle folk and African influences, resulting in a distinct sound that sets him apart from others in his genre. Yeché’s remarkable voice, both as a singer and a songwriter, has garnered widespread acclaim, including significant airplay on BBC Radio 1 & 2 and coveted support slots for UK platinum-selling artists such as Lemar and Gabrielle. Notably, Yeché‘s songwriting is characterized by his ability to weave deeply personal experiences into his lyrics, resulting in a body of work that is profoundly moving and authentic. His live performances are equally impressive, striking a delicate balance between captivating entertainment and emotionally resonant storytelling that both comforts and inspires his listeners.

High Table” is the newest track to be featured on the recently released “Soul Afrikanah, Pt 1” EP. The song was expertly produced by Fred Cox, whose impressive resume includes collaborations with Rag n Bone Man, James Morrison, and Janelle Monae. “High Table” is a soulful tune that explores the theme of confronting fair-weather friends and choosing to either demote, rearrange, or remove them from one’s life. With its poignant lyrics and emotive melodies, this song is a standout track on the EP and is sure to resonate with listeners who have experienced similar situations in their own lives.

HouisUshuaia x Foreignlocal. – Can’t Explain

Houis, a French-American producer currently based in NYC, has developed a unique R&B lofi sound influenced by artists like Bonobo and Tom Misch but it also includes newer and fresh indie/house elements as well, with light hints of some of Elliot Moss works. Being both a visual and sound artist, Houis displays versatility in his skills, ranging from visual aesthetics to music. His debut album, “Outgrown,” showcases his diverse range of musical styles, featuring UKG-inspired lo-fi instrumentals, 80s-influenced indie-pop like “Open & Repeat” with Emmett Kai, and soulful tracks with international guest features, such as “Daydreamin‘” with Blush’ko.

Houis has now teamed up with singer/songwriter Foreignlocal. and guitarist Ushuaia for a new intimate single titled “Can’t Explain“. The song draws inspiration from early Tom Misch and combines neo-soul, jazz, and pop to create a sound that is both sweet and melancholic. The dreamy aesthetic of the track draws the listener into a soothing space, similar to the comfort one feels when surrounded by loved ones and friends. The lyrics reflect on the feeling of being lucky to have that ray of sunshine in your life, feeling their warmth and comfort whenever they’re around, like the sun peeking out from behind the clouds on a cold winter day.

Indi Faulkner – Weirdo

Indi Faulkner is a San Francisco-raised, Los Angeles-based singer/songwriter who digs deep into the past and reaches long into the future to craft songs that resonate on several different levels.  Born to a musical family, she rose fast to be the stand-out musician in the group and as a leader in her performing arts school and was awarded the Artistic Excellence Award in Vocal Arts at Ruth Asawa School of the Arts. 

Weirdo” is about the feeling of social isolation that can come from communication challenges and overcoming it. “I wrote this song while attending USC Thornton School of Music for Jazz Vocal and sang the Vocal Track but collaborated with professional musicians to record live at Tiny Telephone Studio“. The track was mixed by Danielle Goldsmith and Mastered by Mystery Room Mastering.


We made this song about a year ago and didn’t have any ideas at the time but once the new Paramore album (This Is Why) came out we were really inspired because instrumentally sounded very similar in style, not so much vocally but it’s in the same spectrum sonically“. From comparisons to the newfound sound o Paramore or just a band doing great new indie pop-rock? We are definitely keen on the second while respecting the resemblances and the direct relationship they identify. The fact is, “How I Feel” sounds gorgeous, light and energetic, a bit like a Spoon track (and that’s the comparison we would like to go for). This a comparison that should be seen as one of the greatest compliments we have ever given a band. This is a genius track that will get you sing out loud repeatedly. This is JAWBERRY, get the name and don’t forget it.

Genuine Joy – Still Waiting

Genuine Joy is the musical alias of Joshua Wolak, a Los Angeles-based artist with an indie-pop sensibility and a penchant for folk-inspired sounds. Following a decade of honing his craft as a songwriter and touring with various bands in Nashville, most notably with Humming House, he made the move to the West Coast to fuse his organic performance style with upbeat, whimsical production. The outcome is a captivating fusion of danceable rhythms and wistful tones, blending synthetic and acoustic elements in a way that’s both catchy and emotionally resonant.

Released on March 3, “Still Waiting“, the debut single from the Los Angeles sessions, is a melancholic yet playful track that packs a punch. Produced in collaboration with the talented musician Daniel Ellsworth and Humming House contributor Bobby Chase, the song showcases the immense creativity and musical prowess of all involved. Featuring laid-back vocals that seamlessly blend with indie-rock riffs, sweeping synth melodies, and a lively piano section, the track “Still Waiting” is a testament to the collective artistry and skill of these musicians.

M’Lynn – Safety Net

M’Lynn is a talented singer, songwriter, and pianist from Dallas, Texas. She began her musical journey at age 15 at Booker T. Washington Highschool for the Visual and Performing Arts, where she was inspired by her talented peers and delved into her craft until she felt ready to show it to the world. M’Lynn recorded her first EP, “Grounding” in 2017, and gained traction throughout the Dallas area and global radio stations, with her song “Just Take Time“. M’Lynn’s music is a product of her upbringing in a musical family, and writing music has helped her cope with ongoing mental health struggles. With her intense emotions and introspective outlook on life, M’Lynn’s creativity is fueled, and she feels that she was born for music.

The latest track, released the past month is entitled “Safety Net” and was the first song we selected for this compilation. Written about feeling safe in love in your relationship, this is a gorgeous pop-infused track that will become more contagious the more you listen to it.

Ray Lozano – Better Off

Born and raised in Cologne, Ray Lozano is a singer, songwriter, and producer of German-Filipino descent. Her upcoming album “Pairing Mode” features a collection of songs or chapters that explore different perspectives on solitude. Through each track, listeners are taken on a journey that ranges from a yearning for love to feelings of self-contempt, disorientation, and ultimately empowerment. Ray‘s honest lyrics, combined with her vulnerable yet sophisticated and bold voice, create an emotional dream-like atmosphere that exists somewhere between heartbreak and hope.

Better Off” is the final track out off “Pairing Mode” (out since March 3) and it is a short but perfectly seasoned and produced piece where Ray‘s melancholic but straight-to-heaven voice timbre dabbles around some keys chords and a lo-fi sounding drum, fighting the doubt and accepting the truth: “I’m better of alone“.