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We are kicking off a new year of Weekly5 today with some truly excellent works—from the otherworldly songwriting by Sweden's Linn Koch-Emmery to the stunning artistic development by THYMIAN.
You might find joy in the almost scary beauty of Brother Bird's latest single or indulge in the slow-burning composition by Swiss newcomer Junes. And if you're just here for some sad boy beats, you might embrace the underground—a new post-punk revival project.
Linn Koch-Emmery – Ebay Armour
Swedish artist Linn Koch-Emmery is back after what felt like an empty eternity since her last release, a cover of Lil Peep's Falling Down, in 2022. Since her Grammy-nominated debut album, Being the girl, Koch-Emmery is on a path to infuse more and more vulnerability into her work.
Similar to the utterly brilliant Linn RIP, the new song Ebay Armour sits right in this amalgamated sweet spot of alternative, indie-rock, and pop-like melodies; the composition is dense, even overwhelming, a totality of sound. But the musician's comforting voice guides us through the sonic thicket with a warm glowing melody.
The songwriting, no the whole song, again, is beyond words. It is the result of more than a year of dedicated effort on Linn Koch-Emmery's part and the close collaboration with The Vaccines' Pete Robertson as producer.
THYMIAN – Sentimental feat. Ferran Gorrea
Since his self-titled EP in 2019, THYMIAN has steadily grown his profile with a minimal, 80s-synthpop and post-punk-inspired sound, coined with his memorable singing. Compared to previous songs like Composure or It Is Just Natural, his latest work—Sentimental—shows a significant progression in creativity, quality, and innovation.
In Sentimental, THYMIAN's sound has matured and expanded into more dynamicism—especially with the contribution of Spanish saxophonist Ferran Gorrea. We have heard the combination of post-punk and sax already excel with True Faith's In Vain.
But most of all, the Swiss musician has aligned his voice to the sound: Still full of character, recognizable, yet more natural and closer to his live performances, THYMIAN's delivery approaches Dave Gahan.
Brother Bird – state of mind
In 2013, Caroline Glaser was a participant in the fourth season of The Voice. That is long ago, and in 2021, the Nashville-based singer and songwriter released her debut album, gardens, with her solo project Brother Bird—again proving that those who don't win talent shows are far more interesting artists.
With state of mind, Brother Bird delivers a new display of ethereal excellence. Between the earthy indie-folk waves, you can feel the nostalgia, maybe even a pinch of sadness, penetrating the soul.
Ultimately, it is Brother Bird's reverbing, angelic voice juxtaposed with the planet-bound sphere of us mortals that wraps state of mind in something scary-beautiful. Even the line «We got nothing to lose if we're all gonna die» sounds comforting when it's sung with her voice.
Junes – Happy
Switzerland's newcomer Junes made his initial appearance last year with Easier For You. And it wasn't simply a short splash, as the Zurich-based artist, who used to fall asleep and wake up to Adele's music, follows up with Happy, a song that is far from what the title might suggest.
«It's a song about situations that you don't want to be in anymore but that someone else wants for you,» says Junes about Happy. Composed in the most minimalistic way, with soft touches on the piano and perfectly placed effects, Happy somehow evokes infinity nonetheless.
Happy meanders slowly and shifts shape while Junes gently vocalises his thoughts—almost improvised but too deliberate to classify as a stream of consciousness. Happy is not easy yet a song that unveils its bittersweetness after a while.
the einsamkeit – Sad
You could write a thesis about the reasons why post-punk and dark wave celebrates a resurgence amongst some young people. What is certain is that German acts like Temmis or Edwin Rosen, coining weird genre names like «Neue Deutsche Einsamkeit» or «Neue Neue Deutsche Welle», seem to satisfy a desire for melancholy.
Two artists, an indie-popper and an electronica producer, who would rather remain in the background for now have joined forces in a project called the einsamkeit. Their first single leans hard into this newly carved out niche of electronically dominated sad boy sound.
Sad ticks all the necessary boxes, follows a known recipe, and it should be boring by now. But who cares when the bassline pumps all the blood into the legs, making them ready for dancing, and too little is left in the brain to really think about it? Adrenaline, even with a sombre coating, is still addictive.