[TIFU] CHAPTER XXXIV

Photo art from @blair.might (IG)
From all indie genres, Folk seems to have a special place in our hearts. We can't help to get back to folk songs when we look for some calm and inspiration. When we want to hope for a nice dream. Or when we are feeling in the mood for some very well told stories. As an honour to those feelings, this series is entitled TIFU (Today I Folked Up). Only folk songs from new folk artists. To let you and ourselves go. 

Abby Webster – Sea Goat

Abby Webster hails from the rugged landscapes of Livingston, Montana, where she crafts her enchanting blend of alt-country, folk, and bedroom pop. As a singer-songwriter and musician, Abby’s music transcends genres, weaving together introspective lyrics with melodies that range from whimsical to deeply visceral. With influences ranging from the haunting storytelling of Joni Mitchell to the raw authenticity of alt-country, Abby Webster’s sound is as evocative as the landscapes that inspire her.

Sea Goat“, Abby Webster’s latest single, emerges as a new gorgeous folk song we can’t get enough of. Following the success of her previous hit “Tall Boy” which garnered over 1.2 million plays, Sea Goat showcases Abby’s evolution as an artist. With its acoustic guitar-based melody, the track resonates with a richness and depth that draws listeners into its nostalgic embrace. Emanating a retro-like aura reminiscent of Joni Mitchell’s timeless classics, Sea Goat is a poignant homage to the enduring power of folk music to capture the complexities of the human experience. As Abby Webster continues to carve her path in the music scene, Sea Goat stands as a captivating glimpse into the soul of an artist on the brink of a new musical journey.

Alma Jette – Demons

Alma Jette, born in the creative crucible of an old Austin bungalow during the solitude of the pandemic, is the brainchild of Mary Bryce, a seasoned musician hailing from Texas. Drawing inspiration from the spacious pop of Cate Le Bon and the sculptural elegance of Constantin Brâncusi, Bryce embarked on a solo journey with Alma Jette, fueled by a creative and romantic partnership with guitarist Jake Miles. Together, they crafted “I Found A Reason,” an album that transcends mere love songs, delving into the depths of longing and introspection. With a voice that bends and reaches with emotive fervor, Bryce navigates themes of loneliness, longing, and the inevitability of loss with unwavering sincerity. Through the highs and lows of her personal narrative, Alma Jette emerges as a testament to resilience, a sonic tapestry woven from the threads of heartache and the promise of renewal.

Demons” is a haunting reflection on love’s complexities, woven into the fabric of Alma Jette’s debut album, “I Found A Reason“. Mary Bryce, the mastermind behind Alma Jette, intricately paints scenes of intimacy and longing against the backdrop of her personal journey, from the solace of an old bungalow in Austin to the devastating loss of her Los Angeles home to fire. Collaborating with guitarist and producer Jake Miles, Bryce crafted a collection of tracks that now resonate as a poignant exploration of heartbreak and growth. Tracks like “Demons” and “Do You Remember” exude a tender vulnerability, capturing moments of shared intimacy amidst the echoes of Smokey Robinson’s melodies. Yet, as life’s unexpected turns unfolded, Bryce found herself reinterpreting her own creations in the wake of a breakup and the cleansing power of fire. The album, released under Bryce’s own label, Melted Recordz, embodies a raw honesty, each note a testament to resilience and the transformative nature of loss.

Almost Twins – Mosaics

Hailing from Leipzig, Almost Twins emerges as a rising force in the German indie-folk scene, embodying a delicate balance of introspection and sonic allure. Led by singer-songwriter Max Grüner, the band’s journey began as a solo project before blossoming into a collaborative effort marked by a profound musical connection with bandmates Laurenz Welten, Valentin Mühlberger, Raphael Schuster, and Arne Imig. Drawing inspiration from shared experiences and a mutual passion for music, Almost Twins crafts melodies that oscillate between intricate layers and candid lyricism. Under the guidance of producer and bassist Alexander Binder, known for his work with esteemed artists like Dota and Crucchi Gang, the band’s forthcoming debut album promises to encapsulate a sonic landscape that mirrors the depth of human emotion. With a sound that evokes the ethereal tranquillity of Erlend Øye and the soulful resonance of José Gonzáles, Almost Twins invites listeners into a realm where warmth and introspection intertwine, offering a glimpse into the heartfelt narratives that shape their musical tapestry.

Mosaics“, their latest track, takes listeners on a journey through the nuances of uncertainty and the beauty found within it. Born from the bustling diversity of a housing project in Dresden, the track resonates with an exploration of unfamiliarity, turning discomfort into a wellspring of inspiration. The vintage production, rich with tape delays and analogue filters, serves as a textured backdrop for impulsive acoustic guitars and vocals reminiscent of José Gonzáles, weaving seamlessly with the whimsical interplay of Wurlitzer, drums, bass, and saxophone. This is a single that embraces the complexities of life’s mosaic, inviting listeners to find solace in the unknown.

Blair Might – Birdbrain

Blair Might presents a distinctive fusion of folk and funk in the realm of indie music, showcasing the musical finesse of LA-based producer and multi-instrumentalist, Patrick Blair Miller. Under the moniker Blair Might, Miller crafts an immersive sonic experience, weaving expressive vocals and intricate songwriting with samples, jazz-inspired harmonies, and groove-infused beats. The result is a captivating blend that beckons listeners into a unique auditory landscape. Drawing on his multi-faceted musical background, Blair Might introduces a fresh perspective to the folk genre, offering a sound that is both experimental and inviting.

The track, appropriately titled “Birdbrain” unfolds as a melancholic yet enchanting indie-folk composition. Miller’s almost-drunk-like vocals create a distinct allure, their waviness adding a layer of gorgeous complexity. The song is reminiscent of Radiohead’s venture into folk, merging the unconventional with the traditional. “Birdbrain” delves into the way music can take on a distorted quality in the listener’s mind, emphasizing the depth and meaning that can still be found within the unconventional soundscape. It’s a folk exploration that transcends the norm, offering a unique perspective on the interplay between distortion and profound musicality.

Fur Trader – Exit Signs

Fur Trader, the brainchild of singer-songwriter Andrew Pelletier hailing from Los Angeles, CA, invites listeners on a nostalgic journey with a distinctive blend of dark, harmonic modern folk. Born in the heartland of the Midwest, Pelletier utilizes Fur Trader as a vessel to channel his introspective musical musings, characterized by his haunting baritone vocals accompanied by skilful acoustic guitar and piano compositions. Drawing inspiration from the sombre tones of Tom Waits and the lyrical prowess reminiscent of David Bazan, Pelletier’s musical journey began in childhood, evolving into a mature exploration of melancholy and introspection.

A little 90s folk throwback, with a tilt towards 60s pop, the latest offering from Fur Trader “Exit Signs” takes listeners on a soulful ride through the annals of folk history. This indie-folk gem is a testament to Pelletier’s ability to seamlessly bridge the gap between eras, blending the evocative sounds of the 90s with a touch of the golden age of pop from the 60s. The track exudes a timeless quality, combining Pelletier’s baritone vocals with acoustic guitar melodies and piano arrangements, creating an atmosphere that is both familiar and refreshingly unique.

Gemma Hayes – Feed The Flames

Gemma Hayes emerges once again into the folk music scene with her latest single, “Feed The Flames”. Hailing from the serene landscapes of Tipperary, Ireland, Hayes’ musical journey has been a tapestry of rich experiences and sonic explorations. Born into a family deeply immersed in music, her early life in Ballyporeen fueled a passion for songwriting and poetic expression. After venturing into the Dublin music scene and captivating audiences with her raw talent, Hayes caught the attention of Source Records, leading to a multi-album deal at just 23. Her debut EPs hinted at a fusion of folk sensibilities and experimental sounds, setting the stage for her critically acclaimed debut album, “Night on my Side”. Despite the album’s artistic success, Hayes took a hiatus to recalibrate, collaborating with artists like Adam Duritz and Joey Waronker while crafting her distinct sound. Now, with “Feed The Flames”, Hayes weaves a poignant narrative inspired by the fiery complexities of human relationships, showcasing her signature blend of strength and vulnerability.

“Feed The Flames” encapsulates Gemma Hayes’ return to the forefront of indie folk, marking a decade since her last album release. The track, infused with haunting melodies and poignant lyricism, unfolds like a cinematic tale of love and its tumultuous journey. Set against the backdrop of West Cork, the official music video illuminates Hayes in a new light, exuding a raw emotional intensity that mirrors the song’s narrative. Reflecting on the inspiration behind the track, Hayes draws from the depth of human connection portrayed in “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf”, channeling the essence of love’s fragility and resilience. With her ethereal vocals and evocative songwriting, Hayes invites listeners on a soul-stirring exploration of passion and its transformative power. As she continues to carve her path in the folk music landscape, “Feed The Flames” stands as a testament to Hayes’ enduring artistry and storytelling prowess, reaffirming her status as one of Ireland’s most accomplished songwriters.

Impermanent – Clairvoyance

Impermanent, the moniker of Joel, embarks on a sonic odyssey, exploring a captivating realm of warmth and textured soundscapes. Rooted in dub music, Impermanent‘s spontaneous and intuitive approach to music creation transcends mere technique, using dub fx as a tool to intricately layer and enhance the auditory experience. The result is an immersive sonic tapestry that revels in asymmetry and unpredictability, guiding listeners through a profound journey. Building on his dub foundation, Impermanent seamlessly weaves instruments and rhythms from Latin American traditions into his compositions, creating a dynamic fusion of global sounds. Drawing inspiration from his travels and the ever-evolving world, Impermanent‘s music captures the ephemeral beauty of life’s fleeting moments. His diverse cultural influences echo shades of Nicola Cruz, El Búho, and Joaquín Cornejo, solidifying Impermanent‘s place in the rich tapestry of contemporary global music.

Marking his debut EP release, “Clairvoyance” invites listeners on a captivating expedition, navigating through introspective quena flute melodies and lively Latin-American beats. The piece exudes a fresh and soulful essence, skillfully weaving together diverse cultural influences and sonic elements. In its harmonious blend of traditions and contemporary sounds, “Clairvoyance” emerges as a vibrant and culturally resonant piece that effortlessly bridges the gap between different musical landscapes.

Luke De-Sciscio – Clever Ghost

Luke De-Sciscio is a prolific singer-songwriter whose creative journey has culminated in his fourth album of last year, the mesmerizing “Heaven“. Breaking away from the confines of traditional folk, De-Sciscio’s music is a testament to artistic liberation and self-discovery. Recorded in a focused week following a period of intense learning, “Heaven” reflects a state of doubtlessness and creative stride. De-Sciscio sheds preconceived notions of genre, delivering what can be considered his most authentic and coherent listening experience to date. His madly devotional authenticity and commitment to recording close to the source shine through, creating an album that transcends expectations.

The final release of the year from Luke De-Sciscio, titled “Clever Ghost, is a delicate exorcism encapsulated in a soft folk ode. Serving as a tender reflection on the justice we often neglect to grant ourselves, the track is a beautifully poignant composition. In a year marked by the release of four albums, “Clever Ghost” stands out as a pretty, breathing song that unfolds with unwinding grace. The chorus elevates into a haunting croon, whispering and enthralling with disarmingly intimate lyrics. With its heart on its sleeve, the song is a gentle thank you to the perpetual oscillations of love, making it a perfect addition to any folk-based compilation.

Memorial – Corduroy

Memorial, a folk-pop duo comprising Jack and Ollie, takes a measured approach to songwriting, bridging the distance between Brighton and Manchester through exchanged voice memos. Despite their nascent career, they’ve gained support from notable figures like Lucy, Courtney Marie Andrews, Samantha Crain, and Flyte. With just a few songs, Memorial‘s promising journey suggests they may be onto something significant in the folk-pop scene.

In their latest release, “Corduroy“, the duo presents their first offering of new material following their eponymous full-length LP. True to form, they seamlessly resume their warm and tender acoustic-led sound that has been a hallmark since their inception. The track maintains the breezy atmosphere they are celebrated for, featuring captivating vocals that exude warmth and allure, creating a seamless continuation of their established aesthetic.

MVSO – Hourglass

MVSO, a dynamic collaboration between songwriter and vocalist duo Mat Vairo and Saumon Oboudiyat, emerges as a compelling force in the folk music landscape. Their unique sound, described as contemplative yet accessible, haunting yet peaceful, merges raw guitar arrangements reminiscent of Jose Gonzalez with atmospheric electronic elements in the spirit of Thom Yorke and Ry X. The duo’s vocals interweave to create an ethereal atmosphere that balances the simultaneous nuances of dark and light. MVSO’s music, marked by haunting vocal stacks and harmonies inspired by artists like Nick Hakim, serves as reflective mirrors, contemplating personal experiences and universal themes of life and death, boundaries, and the fleeting nature of time.

“Hourglass”, the captivating debut single from MVSO’s upcoming EP, “Proprioception” is a masterful composition produced by Arthur Moon and mixed by Noah Georgeson (known for his work with Andy Shauf). The track unfolds with plucked and layered guitars, resonating with the styles of Nick Cave and Damien Rice, accompanied by swelling violins that create a rich, immersive atmosphere. Engaging hooks and instrumental layers captivate the listener throughout, leading to a satisfying outro that seamlessly transitions into a Spencer Zahn fretless bass line with a punchy kick and snare drum.

Orion Shoals – Keep on Running

Orion Shoals emerges from the sun-drenched streets of Los Angeles with an indie rock sound that echoes the coastal vibes of their origins in Nantucket, Massachusetts. Formed in the summer of 2020 by singer-songwriter-guitarist Joe Olney and multi-instrumentalist-producer Floyd Kellogg, the band quickly made waves with their introspective lyrics and eclectic blend of indie folk, rock, and post-punk influences. The band’s name, inspired by a real location on a nautical chart, reflects their deep connection to the sea and the wanderlust that fuels their music. Olney’s soulful vocals and Kellogg’s masterful production create a sonic landscape that invites listeners on a journey through the highs and lows of the human experience.

Keep on Running” is a sonic journey through the heartland of indie rock, channeling the raw emotional power of Bruce Springsteen while weaving in the atmospheric textures reminiscent of The National and The War on Drugs. With a nod to 90s retro vibes, the track combines indie folk sensibilities with the driving energy of indie rock and the introspective depth of post-punk. As the song progresses, it builds to an overwhelming crescendo, yet expertly crafted breathing spaces provide moments of reflection amidst the intensity. Orion Shoals‘s debut single is a testament to their ability to blend genres seamlessly while delivering a song that resonates with listeners on both a visceral and emotional level.

All these songs (and all previous songs featured in TIFU) are also featured on our folk playlist. Follow it on Spotify: