From Beyonce’s secret album drops to Jay Z’s new streaming app TIDAL, artists are finding more and more novel ways to release their music. Step in Oh Wonder, the South London duo who are gracing the internet with their album in one month instalments over on Soundcloud. Now nine months into the project, the latest track ‘Landslide’ was uploaded today – and we love its cute boy/girl vocals and laid-back electro sound. We caught up with Anthony and Josephine to ask about the tracks that have influenced them – check out their ultimate playlist below.
Childish Gambino – ‘Sober’
“This is one of our favourite videos of all time. It’s hilarious and beautifully executed – Childish Gambino has got moves! Our favourite part is when he jumps onto the hidden travelator and slides across the screen like an absolute legend.”
Kwabs – ‘Perfect Ruin’
“Perfect Ruin has made us extremely excited for Kwabs’ debut album. We love this chilled and reflective side to his music, and his voice is just ridiculous.”
Majid Jordan – ‘Her’
“Our friend Raye showed us this video on a writing session recently, and we all just sat there with our mouths open in silence watching it. It is sheer beauty in monochrome.”
Ryn Weaver – ‘Octahate’
“Ryn is a goddess. We had the good fortune to see her perform her first London show last week and she blew us away with her dazzling vocals and cute charisma. ‘Octahate’ was her last song of the set, and the energy in the room was so encompassing that loads of people climbed up on the tiny stage and jumped around with her. It was such a unifying moment to watch.”
Bon Iver ‘I Can’t Make You Love Me / Nick Of Time’
“This classic Bonnie Raitt tune (possibly one of the best songs ever written) gets a makeover from musical genius Justin Vernon. There is so much sentiment and nostalgia hearing a man sing it. Shiver-inducing.”
If you thought the only epic musical event going down last weekend was Glastonbury, you’d be wrong. 65,000 fans – from the ages of 6 to 60 – took to London’s Hyde Park to worship at the pop-altar of the great Taylor Swift. We’ve been a big fans of Tay’s music (not to mention her chic, polished style) for years but this was our first experience of Ms Swift live. Needless to say it was an experience to remember.
Kicking off with Welcome to New York, complete with parkour-performing backing dancers and a killer light show, Taylor had the crowd completely beside themselves from the get-go. But it wasn’t just the stage theatre that had us. To give Taylor time for those all important costume changes – there were 6 to be exact (our favourite was a glittered catsuit) – her songs were interspersed with video interviews with some of her closest and coolest pals. Lena Dunham was projected on screen recalling her snack-filled sleepovers with Swift or Baby Haim declaring her “the sister they never had” – these short videos, also featuring Selena Gomez and Jaime King, were jam-packed with so much love for female friendship we were in girl power heaven.
The celeb scene didn’t end there. Fast track to a floating catwalk that soared over the heads of the crowd for a new rendition of Love Story and later the ultimate fashion catwalk featuring a power strut from her gal pals Karlie Kloss, Martha Ha, Gigi Hadid, Serena Williams and our favourites, Kendall Jenner and Cara Delevingne. The finale couldn’t have been any better and, after doling out some relationship advice, she burst into an epic Shake It Off with crazy dance set on a spinning platform that hovered right into the crowd. Cool or what?
Tell us what gig you’ve been going to over on Twitter and make sure to share your weekend style using the hashtag #TopshopStyle.
If you still haven’t got your summer festival wardrobe sorted, look no further. This weekend, all our favourite celebrity babes (and about 175,000 other people) headed to Somerset for the iconic Glastonbury festival. Through the crowds and mud we spotted a whole lotta Topshop pieces – see how Daisy Lowe ‘n’ co were styling them below.
With influences ranging from Janet Jackson to Mariah Carey, Shura’s tropical synth-pop is our latest playlist essential. The London artist – who arrived via Manchester and Moscow – has been seducing Europe’s live music scene with her new take on electro. Following in the footsteps of the amazing female artists – think Romy Madley Croft and Banks – Shura has taken a poptastic and melody-laden spin to the genre. We spoke to the self-confessed Tom Boy about her favourite ever gig and performance style choices.
Where does the name Shura come from?
It’s a nickname for Alexandra in Russian. Alexandra is my full name and I’m half Russian. I was never really called Alexandra unless I was in trouble!
How did growing up with Russian background influence you?
The way Russia has influenced me is not that obvious. My mum grew up in the Soviet Union and found music outside of it incredibly exciting. She was super into Pink Floyd. My mum’s music taste explains why I have this weird and slightly pop yet prog side to my music. It’s not Russian culture so to speak but absorbing what was exciting to my parents.
How did moving to UK effect your style of music?
I was born in London actually and later my dad went to work in Manchester so the whole family moved north. My formative years were in Manchester which had such a great music scene. Manchester showed me the ropes, so to speak.
Tell us about the Manchester scene?
I did lots of open mic nights at Manchester. I plied my trade doing acoustic songs on my guitar in a very traditional songwriter way. But I moved on from there. I started off doing the classic teenager-with-a-guitar-talking-about-how-terrible-your-life-is.
How did your move to London change your music?
I started on the acoustic circuit when I came to London but my older brother was a DJ and he introduced me to the likes of Burial and more drum and base stuff. You get a bit older and that darker sort of music you hear in clubs starts to appeal to you and starts to influence what you’re doing.
What other artists have influenced you?
Portishead, Massive Attack but also The Smiths and Pink Floyd. I had quite a broad musical reference growing up. Actually, not that broad, it’s not like I’ve referenced some esoteric flute record!
How do you feel about your association with pop?
I think everyone is still trying to figure out what pop means. I’m a massive fan. Whether that’s grime or underground or Taylor Swift or Mariah Carey. Within that genre there are so many different facets but always strong melodies. I got obsessed with Janet Jackson’s Velvet Rope and that style of music. I guess that is pop that I connect to. Obviously Dillah produce Got Til It’s Gone. I love the Joni Mitchell mashups. How can you go wrong with any of that stuff?
What are you looking forward to this summer?
I’m genuinely most looking forward to Dimensions Festival! Seriously, the location is insane and I went to Croatia a few years ago and loved it. It’s such a beautiful country. Then again, doing all the English festivals – which I’ve only done as a punter – and America, America is always exciting, it’s so big. I flew from LA to NY and it was 5 hours – how can anyone get anything done?
Is there anywhere in the world you’d love to play at?
South America. I spent 6 months travelling there and I’d love to play there. I think it would be amazing. I never went to Brazil or Central America so I think that would be an amazing place to play.
What’s the best gig you’ve played thus far?
SXSW actually, in a venue called Mohawk. There were 150 people squashed into this tiny space and it was pouring with rain outside. It was a super vibey show. Also, the London headliner I did at Village Underground was special – when you walk on stage and see all these people who have paid to see you. It’s a very humbling experience. You go, oh, I should probably do a good job now.
How does style fit into your performance?
I’ve always been a bit of a tomboy – all my life. I’ve stuck out like a sore thumb in that way. I’ve found that the thing that makes you weird in normal life is the thing that makes you interesting as a musician. I’ve never felt the pressure to be different. Being a musician has rather enabled me to stay the same. People who are less attractive suddenly become interesting looking!
Author Polly Vernon from Hay festival, bloggers Julia and Anneli from the Greek islands – this summer our favourite insiders have been sending us postcards from their hols! Next up, model and Insta-girl Elizabeth Jane Bishop shares her travel diary from Milan. Click through the images below to see her explore the city between model castings – from the majestic Milan cathedral to cool city street art and the best pizza in town.
Planning your own trip to Milan? British Airways offers 10 flights a day to Milan and with the flight taking less than two hours you can fly there and back in a day, avoiding the added cost of an overnight stay, using the airline’s day tripper fares. Plan your whole trip including flights, holiday, hotels & car rental visit at ba.com.