Monday, August 15, 2011

Music Review: tyDi - Shooting Stars

Music Review: tyDi - Shooting Stars

Who wants one of the hottest dance albums of the year? Well, here it is. One of the hottest DJ's in not only Australia but worldwide, is here with his second phenomenal album. 

Back in 2009, Brisbane boy tyDi released his stunning album Look Closer. It turned the Australian dance scene on it's ear and set a whole new level for aspiring DJ's and electronic music artists to live up to. Many have striven but none have achieved the same standard.

Now signed to the penultimate of dance music labels, tyDi has release his album Shooting Stars on the Armada label which is known for having some of the biggest and most amazing artists on their books.

Spread over 18 luscious tracks is evidence why so many people have taken notice of this young musical mastermind. The moving music, the spectacular composition of lyrics and sound. From the opener Take A Chance to the uplifting Vanilla to the almost ambient Long Nights on Fast Planes. There is something to appease every electronica lover.

The album features some of the most known vocalists within the dance world. Gracing the track Greater Heights is Jennifer Rene who featured on the Armin Van Buuren track Fine Without You. Her is rich and full and lies over the top of the stunning and steady beats that pulse beautifully through any type of speaker.

Also appearing is Audrey Gallagher who every knows from epic track Big Sky where she appears with John O'Callaghan. The track World's Apart may not have the same anthem like qualities that Big Sky did but it is certainly captures the ear and demands attention. Even when the album plays as background music, Gallagher's ethereal voice starts to play out of the speakers and you will pay attention. The song is easily an eargasm just waiting to happen.

The sheer and simply beauty of World's Apart is so dynamically different to the following track Never Go Back featuring Brianna Holan that you will check to make sure that it is the same album. The steady, driving beats that ripple throughout the track are addictive. It's hard to look past this track as a favourite.

For those who don't know, tyDi studied at the prestigious Conservatorium of Music and has a classical background. On the closing track Ariana, you can understand why. It's an instrumental track that is unrivaled in it's beauty. The delicate piano, the gentle strings and the calm soaring percussions that glide throughout the song are stunning. There are no real words to describe the sheer rapture that can be found in listening to this track.

This album is sheer brilliance and proof positive of just how diversely talented an individual can be. From the arrangement and production, to the effort that would have been put into writing this album. 

Don't be fooled by the hype, this album is worth it. You don't just want this album, you need it. For want of a better description, this musical journey is nothing short of astounding and breath taking. This man has been touring the world, head lining music festivals and has played club after club and garnered the attention of dance lovers world wide. To understand why, listen to this album.

Shooting Stars is out now through Armada

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Music Review: Zoë Badwi - Zoë

Music Review: Zoë Badwi - Zoë

It's been two years in the making, but the unmistakable talent of Zoë Badwi is now recorded and ready for you to take home. This unmissable vocal powerhouse has released her first album and it's worth every cent.

From her first release back in 2009 with Release Me to 2011 with the release of Accidents Happen, Badwi has shown that Australian artists can produce absolutely amazing music. Her debut album, Zoë, is just that evidence.

The album starts thumping from the outset with the opening track Freefallin. It's a track that brings back memories of so many nights out. People moving on a dancefloor, gyrating to the beat as Badwi's voice soars to high notes that no human should be able to hit. It's certainly one of Badwi's best known tracks and a welcome inclusion to any clubbers library.

Following is the amazing track Until You're Over Me. It's got the thumping bass that we have come to know and love as part of Badwi's signature that combined with soaring vocals and slick production, leave no doubt that it is destined to join her other singles as a club staple.

For those who were wishing, praying and hoping for it's inclusion, yes, Release Me has been thrown in. The throbbing beat that we all fell in love with and threw our hands in the air to so many nights. It also plays nicely into Carry Me Home which, while still dance-like, has a much more demure approach. It's certainly a pleasant change of pace in comparison to the rest of the album.

Skipping forwards a few tracks is Reckless. The song it catchy and will get your foot tapping. It also sounds very similar musically to Wynter Gordon's smash hit Dirty Talk. The lyrics, however, prove that this is a Badwi production. 

The only other comparison on the album is One Step Behind which has a similar feel to Kylie's X album. This leaves Minogue dead in the water though. Badwi presents the song with enticing beats and seductive vocals that stimulate the ear and drag the listener's attention.

Badwi's other, lesser known, single from 2009 was In The Moment and has been included on the album. It's catchy and flashy. It's something else to behold and start dancing to. Slick production, steady beats and a healthy amount of bass mean that it's club ready and deserved more attention than it got.

Badwi does have a softer side. Included on the album is Believe You. The album's token ballad. It's a beautiful piano based track which matches Badwi's voice perfectly. For this one, stunning song, Badwi croons rather than belts out the tune. The performance has a raw and vulnerable quality to it that is endearing and heartfelt.

The album closer is The Other Side. Don't try and compare it to anything else that you know of Badwi. The minimalistic instruments at start gives way to the vocal dynamics that have, by now, come Badwi's trademark. She proves her vocal range is just out of this world with the high notes she hits. It's hard not to at least nod your head as the music ripples and entices the listener.

For a debut album Zoë Badwi couldn't have done any better. This is the strong type of album that is missing so often in today's music scene. While it sticks to primarily one genre, it excels and shows just how talented Badwi really is. This album is phenomenal and any lover of electronica will want this album.

Zoë is out 5th August 2011 through Neon Records

The latest single Carry Me Home:

And the club favourite, Freefallin:

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Live Performance: Zoë Badwi

Live Performance: Zoë Badwi 

She's been captivating Australia's dance scene hearts for a couple of years now and she's finally releasing her debut artist album. Zoë Badwi is ready to take the Australian music industry by storm and she's got a set of pipes that will floor a nation.

From starting off with the club smash hit Release Me back in 2009, Badwi has firmly planted her name in the international dance scene. With her voice that belts out over any speakers and a style that sets a whole new standard for vocal dynamics, Badwi is set to turn the music scene on it's ear.

The comparisons are instantly obvious. She's a Melbourne girl who is not only stunning but very girl-next-door, but she's also very personable when you speak to her. Badwi is a star in her own right and nothing will dissuade that visage that she has created.

Wednesday, 3rd August 2011, Badwi had her Melbourne album launch at the Greyhound Hotel in St Kilda. Climbing up on stage, Badwi blew away the crowd that had gathered to hear what she had to offer and the response was spectacular.

There had been whispers among the crowd that Badwi would be auto-tuned within an inch of her life. Those whispers were soon squashed and the gathered audience amazed at the true talent that the tiny star had to offer. 

From the opening song Freefalling, which any good club goer should know, to the breathtaking acoustic version of Accidents Happen, Badwi left the audience in sheer amazement as she belted through song after song. There was even a stunning cover version of Estelle's classic American Boy thrown into the mix. Badwi showed how brilliant she is by performing it as an acoustic version featuring her friend Isaac.

There were members of the audience who danced along to each track and didn't stop dancing, even on the one ballad that she performed to a more than receptive audience.

There was no theatrics or spectacular visual displays. There was Badwi on stage with backing music and her voice. What a voice it is. Strong, powerful and distinctly feminine. Some vocalists tend to lose themselves in scales and electronic enhancements, Badwi isn't one of them.

This is certainly an up and coming performer that needs to be watched. From her dynamic vocal ability to club heavy tracks, she's got it mastered and carved out a spectacular niche for herself. Not only within the Australian music scene, but as an international dance artist. Should Badwi play near you, make sure you go and see her belt out your favourite track but to witness her pure bliss as she sings each song to her heart's content.

Zoë Badwi... keep an eye out for her. This is the next big music export from Australian shores and will be setting your local club ablaze with little effort.