Alt Pop Duo Hooked Like Helen Shares Stunning Ballad ‘Winter’

Ohio-born and based Alt-Pop duo HOOKED LIKE HELEN has unveiled a rather stunning version of Tori Amos song ‘Winter’, released last Friday (6th January) via Stipp Manor Music,

The single is deeply melodic and despite Nikki’s hauntingly powerful vocals, ‘the track ‘Winter’ possesses an elegant warmth, which allows one to engage with the compelling production.

Nikki and Jon tell us about the inspiration behind their cover of ‘Winter’ (Tori Amos Cover): “When our friend/fitness instructor asked us to play “Winter” by the incomparable Tori Amos, within minutes of dissecting the first few bars of the song we quite frankly fell in love with it. We realised that it needed to become a more significant part of our musical journey and we decided to record a full-length cover of “Winter” for release to the world”.

Nikki adds, “Winter is about a girl’s relationship with a father figure who believes in her and sees greatness in her that she might not see in herself. Ironically, I did not have anyone in my life who fit that role for me as I was growing up, but I think this might be the very reason the song resonates with me on such a visceral level. Music allows us to escape, to imagine, to build castles in our minds. When I sing and play “Winter”, I am (for 4 minutes and 30 seconds) one of those girls with a dad who loves her”.

Hooked Like Helen is husband-and-wife duo Nikki and Jonathan Stipp, whose sound embodies a unique vein of alternative music; dark lyrical themes of unresolved trauma and existential pondering providing a refreshingly authentic perspective crafted from their home studio in the woods outside Cleveland. Their combined musical influences include artists such as Queen, Michael Jackson, Twenty One Pilots, Green Day, Tori Amos, Mariah Carey, Nirvana, and Prince whilst Nikki’s powerful vocals bring to mind artists such as Kate Bush and Ellie Goulding.

Have a listen to ‘Winter’ below…

Song of the Day: Coma – Susan Hisey

SUSAN HISEY‘s debut single ‘Coma’ is a vulnerable track about coming out of a mental nadir to a changing world. The lyrics goes on a journey through struggling with intense mental health issues while dealing with change amidst a fast-paced society. Simplistic piano chords allow Hisey’s crisp yet emotive voice to come alive as she recounts how she lived her life in a constant “fight or flight” before gradually coming out of this mental coma.

A soul Pop/Country singer-songwriter from Elyria, Ohio, Susan strives to preserve her authenticity throughout her music career, focusing on real lyrics that people can relate to. While Susan is gentle at heart, she is strong in song with vocals that have been professionally trained for years through musical theater and choir, and as a Commercial Music major at Belmont University.

While in school, she performed alongside Trisha Yearwood, Laura Bell Bundy, and Cece Winans, and performed in an acapella group with Imogen Heap at the Ryman Auditorium. She most recently performed in a Matt Davenport Production tour “American Big Band: Home for the Holidays.” Currently, she works as a vocal coach and a mentor for teens moms with an organization called “Young Lives” in Nashville TN.

‘Coma’ shows us it’s okay to not be okay; a message we could all stand to hear more often. Have a listen to this stunning ballad below…

Song of the Day: Half Dead, But Still – Nova Moura

Born out of solitude, NOVA MOURA dropped his enigmatic soul/R&B single, ‘Half Dead, But Still’ into today’s hotspot. Produced by Fla. Mingo, the atmospheric song explores pure conflicted emotions of a loner in times of complete isolation.

“This song is about loneliness and isolation. It displays a weak and pathetic defensive wall against this loneliness. So I suppose the song is about me trying to act tough against my own loneliness; trying to act like it doesn’t bother me and that I’m fine without anyone. I think the beauty of the track is that you can hear the confidence and the sadness at the same time.”NOVA MOURA

Check it out below (absolutely stunning):

 

Mixtape Review: Master Tone 2 – Tony Beyond

TONY BEYOND‘s latest mixtape, ‘Master Tone 2’ goes into the turbulent mind of the Ohio-based emcee following the break up of an old flame. The 11 track collection is the sequel to his previous mixtape, ‘Master Tone.’

His thoughts may be a rollercoaster ride but in contrast, this set sports an atmospheric/hazy -almost trip-hop – vibe in which the upriser’s flow just floats over the kickback arrangements.

There are a few bangers in there that deserve attention…check out ‘Master Tone 2’ below:

Must Listens: Bloody Money, We Good, XO Return

New Track: A Song I Made With My Friend Chappy Inspired by Travis Scott – Manic Phase

21-year-old upcoming spitter MANIC PHASE presents his latest track, ‘A Song I Made With My Friend Chappy, Inspired by Travis Scott’ ( I’m not kidding here, this is really the name of the song.)

The Ohio college student’s new offering is a remix of Travis Scott’s single, ‘ A Man’. Why don’t you guys go ahead and show some support; check it out.