“Into The Further” by Matthew Santos

Soul, folk, indie-rock artist, Matthew Santos, hails from Chicago, Illinois. Recently he released his album, Into The Further, on June 2. Members of his band include himself on vocals and guitar, Jon Deitemyer (drums), Emma Dayhuff (Bass), Aviva Jaye and Sara Lim (additional vocals), Chihsuan Yang and Maria Storm (violins), Oana Tatu (viola), Katinka Kleijn (cello), James Davis (trumpet), and Steve Duncan (trombone). Plus, string arrangements by Matt Ulery.

Watch the music video for “Seven Years” via Audiotree Live.

In 2008 Santos’ world had undergone a drastic change with the international success of his “Superstar” collaboration with Lupe Fiasco. After the world-wide success of the Grammy-nominated song, Santos willingly stepped back from the flash and bang of the lime light and returned to the Midwest to become grounded again in his grass roots, soul-infused, indie-folk-rock project that had been put on hold for almost a year of constant touring. Santos released two records, This Burning Ship of Fools (2010) and Quickly Disappearing (2012).

Six years later, Santos has six records and two Grammy nominations under his belt; over 300 live performances world-wide; appearances on David Letterman, Jimmy Kimmel, Ellen, Craig Ferguson; and multiple performances at Lollapalooza, Coachella, Glastonbury and Bonaroo. Currently independent, Santos is working on his seventh official release entitled Into The Further with a new trio based in Chicago, and in collaboration with Candy Rat Records. He continues to tour the world over with his unique style of beat-boxing and looping — achieving a massive sound to accompany his renowned voice and heart-felt, soulfully crafted songs.

Additionally, Santos has started an exciting new collaboration with fellow Chicago creatives from bands Hey Champ and Gemini Club to make up the dark RnB, 80’s electro-synth-pop-rock group called MONAKR. Their debut EP is set for a summer 2015 release.

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“Into The Further” by Matthew Santos

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Image and mp3 courtesy of Matt Bacon, Artist Liaison at Independent Music Promotions

“Feel Alive” by Aleks Grey

Born in Volda, Norway, Aleksander Raftevold (aka. Aleks Grey) was introduced to music through classical piano lessons. He was soon drawn to blues, soul and rock and roll. By the age of ten he was writing his own songs and by twelve he had become an accomplished guitarist. Grey has also landed leading roles in a number of successful musicals (Rent, West Side Story, Les Miserables, Fame). Released on May 15, the single “Feel Alive” is a feel-good, anthemic pop track and perfect listening for summer sunshine.

At sixteen Grey founded his band The Last Province with a group of friends. They played several festivals and had their first single “Lullaby” playlisted on Norway’s national radio station NRK P1. In 2013, Grey recorded his first singles “Starlight” and “Born” at Urban Sound Studios in Oslo.

A move to Liverpool in 2013 allowed Grey to connect with his current backing band including himself (vocal/piano/synth/guitar), Reece Cairns (drums/pad), Eline Brun (bv/piano/synth), Andreas Oxholm (bv/bass), and Andreas Skuggen (guitar). In May 2014, Grey and his new band played The First Look Festival at Paul McCartney’s performing arts school. In December of 2014, he embarked on his first tour of Norway performing six gigs in the Western Part of the country.

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“Feel Alive” by Aleks Grey

Aleks Grey

Image and mp3 courtesy of Andrea Lynch of Blue Soap Music Professional Radio Plugging and Music PR

“Voices” by Lights That Change

Lights That Change is an alternative ethereal dream-pop outfit, hailing from North Wales and headed by Marc Joy. After many years producing other artists, he finally turned his attention towards his own creative endeavors.

The band is gearing up to release Byzantium this summer. They released two previous albums — Rainbow On Your Shoulder EP and Whispers In February.

I present to you the first single from their forthcoming album, entitled “Voices.”

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“Voices” by Lights That Change


Image and mp3 courtesy of Shauna McLarnon of Ear To Ear Records