New Release Roundup: ROKI, WAASH, Fellow Camper, & Eunice Keitan

ROKI

Pop

“Hands Up”

Alternative pop artist ROKI embarked on her musical journey at a young age, finding solace in crafting tunes and later leading several bands. After a short hiatus to explore her passion for filmmaking, she returned to the music scene, collaborating with the likes of Ben Kaplan from Mother Mother and Winston Hauschild of Wanting Qu to create new tracks. 

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The recording of her debut solo album, MOTHER, marked a pivotal period in her life, where she grappled with both the profound changes of motherhood and the devastating loss of her own mother. These experiences cast her into a deeper, more shadowed emotional realm, compelling her to channel her grief into her music.

As we inch towards 2024, ROKI is ready to step into a new musical chapter with her EP Lovable, which promises brighter, more affectionate sounds brimming with hope for fresh beginnings. Her latest track, “Hands Up,” stems from a moment of conflict with her partner and carries a profound message about the resilience and perseverance required to sustain love.

“There’s always going to be ups and downs,” she reflects. “[It’s about] figuring out how to navigate the ebbs and flows with more grace and understanding…sometimes you just have to put your hands up in the air, and say enough.”

“Hands Up”

WAASH

Indie Pop Rock / New Wave

“There’s Never Enough Voices”

Versatile Vancouver artist Andrew Bishop has solidified his presence as a prominent figure in the city’s pop music scene over the past decade. While he has been a guitarist for several bands like Alex Little & the Suspicious Minds and Twin River, he has simultaneously cultivated a repertoire of country-infused solo compositions under the name White Ash Falls. 

Now, he embarks on a new musical journey with WAASH, uniting his seasoned songwriting prowess with an ardent love for expansive shoegaze soundscapes. This marks both the zenith of his musical journey and the inception of an exciting new chapter. What initially began as a solitary endeavor under the WAASH banner has since blossomed into a full-fledged live band, a testament to the project’s evolution.

The self-titled EP by WAASH is set to be released on November 20th, containing five meticulously crafted tracks that signify Bishop’s departure from his conventional songwriting process.

This approach enabled him to delve into the minute, fashioning lyrics and melodies that seamlessly interlace with each song, including, “There’s Never Enough Voices.” Within this latest single, one can discern a swirl of despair and confusion, a poignant exploration of the quest for understanding one’s motives and the profound realization of past errors.

“There’s Never Enough Voices”

Fellow Camper

Folk

“Satellities” (feat. Meredith Moon)

Composed of Lee Watson and Benjamin Roy, folk duo Fellow Camper is known for singing in a delicate, two-part harmony style. They draw their musical inspirations from the Canadian folk pioneers who once graced the stages of Toronto’s Yorkville music scene during the 1960s and 1970s. Infusing this vintage charm with a contemporary sensibility, Fellow Camper offers something for new and old generations.

The story of Watson and Roy’s collaboration traces back to their serendipitous meeting at camp, where they shared countless moments beneath the stars, surrounded by friends. Gazing up at the celestial satellites in the night sky, they found themselves lost in contemplation about the uncertain future, pondering which of these relationships would endure and which would diverge onto separate paths, perhaps never to cross again. This was one of those special moments that would spur a song.

Enter the duo’s latest single, “Satellites,” (featuring Meredith Moon), which delves into these missed connections, painting a vivid picture of what might have been under different circumstances.

“Satellites”

Eunice Keitan

Neo-Soul / World Fusion

“Cobalt Sea”

Malaysian-Canadian singer-songwriter Eunice Keitan weaves a musical narrative that mirrors her diverse global heritage and an array of eclectic influences. Her music fuses Neo-Soul and World Folk genres, resulting in music that is both soulfully resonant and innovative.

In her latest single, “Cobalt Sea,” Keitan ventures even further into uncharted territory, melding the sounds of South America and Southeast Asia. This composition is a melodic tapestry interwoven with the enchanting notes of the marimba and gamelan, all while firmly anchored within the soul genre’s framework.

“Cobalt Sea” showcases the rhythmic cadence of the Bunde and the captivating chonta marimba from the Pacific region. Traditionally, these compositions and arrangements are designed to emulate the dynamic character of the sea, evoking its surging waves and shifting tides. 

Keitan found herself struck by the remarkable cultural parallels between Colombia and various Southeast Asian communities, particularly the shared significance of oral traditions and the communal essence of everyday life and music. Witnessing how both cultures draw inspiration from their daily existence, ceremonies, the land, nature, and in this case the sea, she became intrigued by the idea of harmoniously merging South American and Southeast Asian soundscapes.

“Cobalt Sea”

Featured photo: ROKI

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