Album Review: Beautiful Sin – Some Kind Of Illness

Hailing from Manchester, brothers Paul and Mark Hinks – aka indie rock outfit, SOME KIND OF ILLNESS – latest album, ‘Beautiful Sin’, could be described as smooth as a Sunday morning with a tranquil introduction through instrumentals ‘Within A Shadow’ and ‘Ghost’ with the latter featuring a slight sinister spin on the album’s theme.

Third offering ‘A Moment In Time’, first offers a full set of vocals, that’s so smoothing, to the equally smooth and inmate setting. ‘A Lament Reprise’ adds another dimension to the album with its slight electronic drive to the production, uplifting a bed of atmospheric soundscapes similar to what’s offered in the previous productions. ‘Beautiful Sin’ also interrupts the album’s soothing vibe with the distorted and racing guitar riffs breaking through the production, giving off a feather-light and (perhaps 60’s-inspired) Americana feel.

The album concludes with ‘7 Days’, which ventures into a more sinister side of indie rock, with guest vocalist Jenny Jen shedding some light and sweetness to the whole arrangement.

Through their fourth album, SOME KIND OF ILLNESS has effortlessly combine two worlds – indie and rock music –  in a way that’s accessible to those who aren’t massive fans of the aforementioned genres. Have a listen to ‘Beautiful Sin’ below:

Must Listen: A Moment In Time 

New Track: Headloss – [ K S R ] (ft. Time Elijah)

Manchester-based soul singer, [ K S R ] continues to pave his way in the R&B world with his debut EP, ‘Unfiltered’, coming out this Friday (22nd March).

The 19-year-old songwriter delivers his lyrics with ease, stylistically paying homage to his influences – D’Angelo, Erykah Badu and Miguel –  whilst curating his own refreshing sound, achieving a perfect balance of bedroom soul, lo-fi hip-hop and R&B.

‘Headloss’ is the latest single to be released from the upcoming EP, a contemporary approach on neo-soul akin to artists such as Tom Misch, Miguel and Frank Ocean. Released last Thursday, the laid back production oozes pure class, allowing the stunningly refined vocals to shine through.

[ K S R ]’s – real name Roosevelt Kazaula Sigsbert – debut single ‘H / Er’ sparked interest from Konny Kon, one half of Children of Zeus, which set in motion a friendship and musical journey that saw Children of Zeus utilise their 15 years in the music industry to show [ K S R ] the ropes. Since then, the young urban prodigy quit university to focus on music and signed to the label Polarface and received support from online tastemakers such as Gal-dem and Dummy and radio play from BBC 1Xtra.

Following the release of his debut EP, [ K S R ] will perform at his six date UK tour, kicking off at YES in Manchester on the 2nd April.

Too Good to miss, wrap your ears around ‘Headloss’.

Song of the Day: The River – Jasper’s Riddle

JASPER RIDDLE‘s journey to music is something even Hollywood would bulk at. After beginning his studies to become a brain surgeon, he switched to his current vocation, that of heart surgeon…all the while continuing to record as both a Jeff Buckley-influenced acoustic singer songwriter…and a classical composer…and an artist…and a novelist. His debut release reflects his chameleon-like ability to soak up what is happening around him and to interpret it in his own unique way, with elements of rock, neo-soul and even flamenco heralding the arrival of a true 21st Century polymath.

JASPER RIDDLE is Lukas Zeickner, a Manchester-based medical student from a Nigerian background, comfortable singing in English, Edo or Spanish. The concept of JASPER RIDDLE was to record each track as its own self-contained story, including its own artwork, taking you on a journey through different styles and narratives, each combining to become a storybook.

Influenced by beacons of talent from across the world, from Aretha Franklin to Fela Kuti to Estas Tonne, each offering subtle imprints into his own sound. With an overarching love of Schubert, his fascination for science as well as the Arts has led to Lukas performing and producing all his own music, not to mention creating the accompanying artwork and a side-line in publishing novellas. The next time you say to yourself that you haven’t got time to do something, remember to give Jasper’s Riddle a listen and remind yourself that anything is possible!

Have a listen to the stunning ‘The River’ below:

New Track: City of Dreams – Tobi Sunmola

Having brought the heat with previous singles ‘Simba’ and ‘Wild Wild East’ Mancunian wordsmith TOBI SUNMOLA released the title track off his forthcoming EP ‘City Of Dreams’

Inspired by the film ‘Inception’, ‘City Of Dreams’ is a display of Tobi’s admiration and pride for his adopted city following the tragic events earlier in the year. Although the emotional track was written before the 02 bombing, Sunmola maintains that the meaning behind the lyrics only made sense after, as he yearns, “don’t believe what you read in the news baby, the city’s alive”.

Growing up in Nigeria, Tobi recalls saving up lunch money daily to skip school and head to the studio with his rap crew Dope Kommunity. Moving to Manchester aged 16 the young poet instantly immersed himself in the UK hip hop scene recording in local youth club studios. Showing signs of a promising career early on, the aspiring talent has been advocated by the likes of  and BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra.

Captivating, and honest, Sunmola is able to connect with his audience through an inspired sincerity rarely seen amongst rappers so young…here’s your chance to check out his work; listen to ‘City of Dreams.’

Song of the Day: Wild Wild West – Tobi Sunmola

Tipped as Mobo’s ‘One to Watch’ TOBI SUNMOLA returns to centre stage with the second release ‘Wild Wild East’, from his forthcoming EP.

The self-produced single showcases this newcomer’s versatility and ability to combine clever wordplay and infectious flows, with politically driven lyricism. At times the track is reminiscent of the Joey Bada$$ album ‘All Amerikkkan Bada$$’ with the young MC drawing inspiration from his African roots and struggles that he has continued to wrestle with during life in East Manchester.

A play, on the widely known phrase – ‘Wild Wild West’ – Tobi states that, “I used this reference to explain the big bad world I have to deal with, the negativity, deceit, envy and hardship, and how I try to keep my energy high through it all, in the hope of making it back home.”

Growing up in Nigeria, Tobi recalls that “becoming an artiste wasn’t a visible reality. I made music because I really wanted to”. His determination to succeed as a musician against the odds saw Sunmola saving up lunch money daily to skip school and head to the studio with his rap crew Dope Kommunity. Moving to Manchester aged 16 the young poet instantly immersed himself in the grime and UK hip hop scene, and his dedication has seen him achieve great things at the early stages of his career. Alongside winning Adidas’ ‘Take the Stage’ competition, he performed Radio 1 Big Weekend Exeter and has been acclaimed by the likes of Complex, The Line Of Best Fit, Afropunk, DJ Booth and BBC Radio 1 and 1Xtra.

Progressive and perceptive, ‘Wild Wild East’ is a further testament to TOBI SUNMOLA’s out-of-the-box approach as he continues to establish himself as one of the most exciting talents coming out of Manchester’s burgeoning underground music scene.