20 Oct 2021
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Articles By Danica Bryant

Jessica Leigh - EP Review: Summerland
14 Oct 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Following her popular June release Summer Royalty, Jessica Leigh proudly offers her second EP Summerland, a sweltering collection of songs telling the story of a doomed summer romance through synth-pop and singer-songwriter stylings.Summerland opens subtly, with gentle guitar and quiet synths on Met Him At A Party, where Leigh introduces the EP’s vital romance with utmost sincerity.
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Lake South - Album Review: The Light You Throw
03 Oct 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
“Let’s talk about politics, let’s talk about feelings”, sings Lake South on his latest album The Light You Throw, an excellent thesis statement for an album which covers such a spectrum of thought. It’s an astoundingly innovative album, melding electronic synth-pop with introspective folk, and resulting in a record I cannot call anything but pure magic.
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Jason Parker - Single Review: This Is My Year
26 Sep 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
On his latest release This Is My Year, pop newcomer Jason Parker calls back to the cheerful anthems of early 2000s pop, firmly announcing 2021 as his moment to be “happy again”. After appearances with TVNZ’s Popstars and Wellington’s Peachy Keen festival, Parker now sets out to shape his own brave, colourful identity in Aotearoa’s bustling music landscape.
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Sofia Machray - Single Review: The Untold
23 Sep 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Wellington’s “singer-songwriter gone rogue”, Sofia Machray, crafts a spacious indie ballad with her latest release, The Untold. The track is highly reminiscent of bands like Daughter and Placebo, the former of which Machray cites as an influence.
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YAHYAH - Single Review: Little Joy
23 Sep 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Named after a beloved bar in Los Angeles, Little Joy is the latest from pop singer-songwriter YAHYAH, reminiscing on the girls’ nights of her four-year stint living overseas. After writing professionally for other artists with Genuine Music Group, YAHYAH turns her eye back to her own artistry with this track.
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VÏKÆ - Single Review: Moon City
16 Sep 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Vikae melds pulsating commercial pop with the climatic reach of drum and bass on latest release Moon City. Produced by Will Henderson and written during the March 2020 nationwide lockdown, the song is an emotionally charged ode to the end of a relationship, mourning physical separation and filtering through feelings needing to be “put to rest”.
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EM/FM - Single Review: Close Enough
28 Aug 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
From the library of mysterious Kaitaia artist EM/FM, Close Enough is a synth-filled slow jam, introduced by its bright retro wave artwork which visually represents the track’s creative blend of machine-generated instrumentation with traditional jazz.Close Enough offers a unique song structure, with its groovy chorus not hitting until just before the two minute mark, and a lengthy final chorus section.
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Alba Rose - Single Review: Eve
26 Aug 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
The captivating hook of Alba Rose’s debut single, Eve, warns listeners of the likelihood that they will be “swept away”. It’s a truthful mission statement for a track which introduces Rose as a soloist, outside of her performances in Wellington band Corduroy.
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Louis TM - Single Review: Mercedes Car
19 Aug 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
After years backing other artists on the keys, Louis TM is out to make his own mark on the musical world as a soloist. The resulting track, Mercedes Car, is a biting track directed at wasted wealth, carefully crafted with the help of Tiny Triumph Recordings, JJ Golden and Diver Records.
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Julia Belle - Single Review: No Way I Can Sleep
31 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
No Way I Can Sleep is an indie pop dream come true. With the release of her debut single, Wellington's Julia Belle blossoms onto the music scene, exploring a hazy world of late-night loneliness in the modern age.
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Sweet Mix Kids - Album Review: Radio With Pictures
27 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Sweet Mix Kids are just as flamboyant as the cover of their debut album, Radio With Pictures, would have you believe. Stepping off stages at Coachella, Peachy Keen and Rhythm and Vines, the DJ and production duo have created a record of sensual experience, bending genre and sound to their will.
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Louis Baker - Gig Review: Louis Baker @ The Opera House, Wellington - 17/07/2021
18 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
“It’s been a crazy day”, Louis Baker laughs, in front of a captive audience at Wellington’s Opera House. Indeed, it’s been one of the capital’s stormiest in recent memory.
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Boy Virgo - Single Review: Dirty Company
12 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Hyperpop is a revolutionary genre, and with his latest single Dirty Company, Boy Virgo and collaborator Thayerperiod prove they understand its every element. Equally satirising, paying tribute to and experimenting with the vast array of conventions in popular music, Dirty Company is a bubbling, bright ode to gay desire, exploding with exciting electronic sounds.
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Louis Baker - EP Review: Love Levitates
06 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Love Levitates is a triumph for Aotearoa soul star Louis Baker. Merging a diverse range of genres including funk, pop, soul and R&B, Baker's assured sense of identity grounds each song as a cohesive whole.
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Jessica Leigh - Single Review: Summer Royalty
02 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Introducing her upcoming second EP, Summerland, Jessica Leigh's new single Summer Royalty paints a picture of a white-hot seasonal romance. The track is a road trip anthem produced by Leigh's long-time musical collaborator, Jules Evans.
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freya - EP Review: Wildest Creatures I've Dreamed
01 Jul 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Auckland songwriter freya storms into July with her debut studio EP, the beautifully titled Wildest Creatures I’ve Dreamed. Recorded with Harry Charles and Morgan Allen at The Depot, this EP does a fantastic job at taking its listener to the poetic realm of a sleepy, nostalgia-filled seaside town like Devonport.
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Rachel Leo - Single Review: Conversation
28 Jun 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Everything about Rachel Leo's debut single, Conversation, is picture perfect. A collaboration between Leo and some of Kiwi's pop greats, Joseph Corban-Banks, Em Basa and Simon Gooding, Conversation sees the 22-year-old stepping out with an incredibly well-thought-out release, one which will undoubtedly see her bringing audiences to their feet in hundreds of summer festivals to come.
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Molly Devine - Single Review: Because I Love You
21 Jun 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Molly Devine estimates her latest track, Because I Love You, has seen at least seven versions prior to its release last week, having been written over five years ago. It is the second in a series of self-produced works Devine plans to share throughout 2021, setting up an incredibly emotional soundscape for her music.
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Lisa Crawley - Single Review: The Right Way
17 Jun 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
The Right Way is an absolute delicacy. Introducing her new EP due out later this year, Lisa Crawley’s latest single explores the feeling of frustration and awkwardness in the struggle to impress others.
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Kaela - Single Review: Obsessions
04 Jun 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Kaela is not one to let herself be forgotten. Returning from a brief hiatus, her new single Obsessions delivers an otherworldly exploration of her struggle with OCD.
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Michele Ducray - Single Review: Midnight
27 May 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
As a self-professed “fan of the peculiar”, it’s somewhat surprising that Michele Ducray’s first single Midnight is such a carefully cut pop song. Midnight is an unusual but not unwelcome match to her intriguing magic and circus-themed branding.
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Rose Lubransky - Single Review: Head Over Heels
18 May 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Wellington’s indie dream girl Rose Lubransky’s latest bedroom pop single, Head Over Heels, is another unique production with home producer and frequent collaborator BushJungle. The song is undoubtedly catchy, with a more anthemic structure and sound than their preceding work.
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Hunter Davison - EP Review: Headspins
15 May 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Hunter Davison’s debut EP, Head Spins, explores the love, lust and mental health struggles of young people today. It is a vulnerable collection of songs with a knack for interesting rhythmic and melodic ideas.
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Reshma - Single Review: Loneliest Girl
05 May 2021 // review by Danica Bryant
Reshma’s enchanting new single Loneliest Girl takes a dark approach to the story of a collapsed romance. Having previously built a career in her birthplace of Kuala Lumpur, Loneliest Girl serves as Reshma’s debut musical endeavour into the English language, answering her ambition to release a song in New Zealand, where she grew up.
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NZ Top 10 Singles

  • COLD HEART (PNAU REMIX)
    Elton John And Dua Lipa
  • LOVE NWANTITI (AH AH AH)
    CKay
  • INDUSTRY BABY
    Lil Nas X feat. Jack Harlow
  • STAY
    The Kid LAROI And Justin Bieber
  • BAD HABITS
    Ed Sheeran
  • SHIVERS
    Ed Sheeran
  • HEAT WAVES
    Glass Animals
  • HAPPIER THAN EVER
    Billie Eilish
  • MEET ME AT OUR SPOT
    THE ANXIETY, WILLOW And Tyler Cole
  • WOMAN
    Doja Cat
View the Full NZ Top 40...
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