Atlanta-born, LA-based singer-songwriter, McCall is leaving an indelible mark on the music scene. Inspired by the natural progression of life, her bluesy-rock pop grooves explore relationships, femininity, and everything else that makes McCall –– McCall. With powerhouse harmonies and melodies that burrow a vintage genre, her aesthetic is one that transports retro pop-rock fervor into the digital age.
McCall’s most recent single, “Stone Cold,” is an addictive record that evokes flashbacks of toxic bonds. The track is supported by impressive guitar dexterity, providing a solid core for her symmetrical lyrics.
There’s something effortlessly genuine about the natural blend of McCall’s tunes, breathtaking voice, and her bad*ss energy, but we’ll let you be the judge.
McCall’s next single, “Lavender” drops Feb. 21.
“Stone Cold,” is a song that explores that frustrating feeling of not being able to let go of a relationship that’s not good for you. How do you break yourself free from that kind of toxicity (that can be addicting at times) and walk away?
Oh, I’m not good at it all. I’m definitely very addicted to that feeling of trying to make someone like you. What I do is binge listen to all the songs that we would listen to when we were together, to their music if they were musicians, and kind of get all my bad feelings out to prove to myself I’m not afraid to listen to those songs anymore. I don’t know; it’s really hard, actually. I feel like I don’t have good advice on it. I just write about it a lot, and eventually it will fade out. I’m coming out of a relationship now. We broke up nine months ago, but just now I’m out of the toxicity of it. It takes a while; you just have to ride it out.
In a world where we’re always looking for the next best thing, or rather constantly leaving and finding something new (and sometimes better, sometimes not), what is the fine line between settling and not settling?
That’s a great question. It’s kind of hard to settle because someone is always doing better than you or someone is always getting that opportunity that you wanted or even an opportunity that you hadn’t even thought about and then you’re like, “Wow, why didn’t I think about that?” Music-wise, that’s a good thing for me, because even when I feel like I’ve accomplished something, I look at my peers and they’ve accomplished something better. That can be helpful and hurtful in certain ways. Relationship-wise, you need to have that feeling because obviously, there’s always someone more attractive or whatever but it’s really hard to find that one person you connect to perfectly. It’s hard but you just have to see what clicks and what doesn’t.
The lyrics, “Leaving me lonely / But I can’t walk away,” from “Stone Cold” is such a heavy statement. Why do you think even when we don’t feel good or feel like we’re like it’s going nowhere, we still stay?
I think it depends on the relationship. For me, what “Stone Cold” was about wasn’t a real relationship. It was just about a friend of mine; we mutually liked each other, and it never really worked out. That line is wanting so badly to be liked by this person and to feel worthy of their time that when they don’t give it to you, you’re upset but you’re still willing to try again and again. You’re willing to change things about yourself just for the pure idea that they might like that. That feeling can be addicting –– it’s like a puzzle, it’s like what else can I do to make this person like me or change the way they feel about me even if it’ll never work because we’re not right for each other.
Well said. So, in both contexts of relationships as well as the music industry, what pushes you and motivates you to keep going when it feels like nothing’s going right or rather, your expectations aren’t met?
This sounds kind of cheesy, and I don’t really know what type of God I believe in or the universe, but I really feel that this is what I’m supposed to be doing. I give a lot up to the universe and I’ll know it’s all going the way it needs to go. I work really hard so when things don’t turn out how they should, it’s easier to accept that it wasn’t in the stars.
Hope can be a tricky thing when it comes to how we deal with our problems, relationships, mental health, even the issues with our world today. We tend to hold onto the past in hopes that something will change. Obviously, that’s not always the case and more often than not, it won’t ever happen. How do you think we can navigate that?
There comes a time, if you’re really honest with yourself, you’ll realize that you’re holding onto something that’s not worth it anymore. That’s a really hard place to get to, and I think I definitely overstay my welcome in hopes. If you aren’t honest with yourself and the situation, at some point something is going to knock you so hard off your feet that you don’t have a choice but to come to that realization. Just taking time to think with yourself, self reflect, check in, and be like, “Is this actually the right thing to do?”
The music video for “Stone Cold” is the perfect mixture of aesthetically pleasing but still conveys that frustrated feeling of not being able to walk away. The value of visual art is equally as important as the audio in regards to who you want to represent as an artist. What do you feel like you’ve been representing with your music?
Ooh, what a great question. Griffin Meyer directed the music video and we collaborated a lot on the aesthetics. He did an absolutely amazing job. Ursula Bowling was the art director and she killed it as well. I had a great team on that video. We went with this theme of Venus because I feel like what I want to represent is femininity and kind of changing what being a woman means. I’ve always felt very masculine and very tomboy-ish. Sometimes, I feel like I missed out on this “high” femininity that Venus represents.
So with this video, and the music that’s out and the music that’s about to come, I’m just trying to say, “I am a woman.” And that you know, just redefining what it means today to be a woman and what strength and power look like.
It’s an amazing video, and “Stone Cold,” is amazing as well. Congratulations on everything!
Thank you so much. I’ve been sitting on these songs we have yet to put out, and some of them, it’s been years. So we’re just going to put them out and see what happens. I’m really excited!
Turnstile makes strong debut on Billboard charts
Turnstile released their widely-anticipated new album, “Glow On” last week and has received high praise. The body of work debuted at #30 on the Billboard 200 chart and #8 in Current Album Sales on Alternative Albums chart with 5.1 million streams across streaming services worldwide.
Recorded with producer Mike Elizondo and co-produced by Turnstile vocalist Brendan Yates, Glow On finds the band once again charting new ground for hardcore, expanding stylistic boundaries, and celebrating new possibilities. The album boasts 15 tracks devoid of borders, boundaries, or entry obstacles, only abundant imagination, heart, and grooves plucked from all corners of the musical spectrum.
Bringing superhuman energy to the stage, Turnstile is currently out on a run of sold-out headline dates, which continues tomorrow August 28th in Garden Grove, CA, and concludes with a hometown performance on September 16th in Baltimore, MD. Later this fall they are set for a series of festival performances, including Dover, Delaware’s Firefly Music Festival (9/23), Louisville, Kentucky’s Louder Than Life (9/24), Indianola, Iowa’s Knotfest (9/25), and more with a nationwide tour alongside $uicideboy$, Chief Keef, Slowthai and more kicking off on October 1st in Alpharetta, GA at Ameris Bank Amphitheatre. Full Tour dates can be found here.
Take a listen to the full album here.
3. DON’T PLAY
4. UNDERWATER BOI
6. HUMANOID / SHAKE IT UP
8. FLY AGAIN
9. ALIEN LOVE CALL (FEAT. BLOOD ORANGE)
10. WILD WRLD
12. NEW HEART DESIGN
13. T.L.C. (TURNSTILE LOVE CONNECTION)
14. NO SURPRISE
15. LONELY DEZIRES (FEAT. BLOOD ORANGE)
Artist Mndsgn Announces new Mini-Series Ringoo In Colour
On the heels of Mndsgn’s latest album Rare Pleasure, he returns to announce a new mini-series and release its first episode. Ringgo in Colour aims to show a different side of the artist and unpack his various influences, as the first episode dives into his love of illustration, the artist himself creating all the artwork for the album cover and singles. Shot and directed by Ross Harris.
Speaking on his aim with the series, Mndsgn says, “the world isn’t so black & white, rather a vast spectrum of hues. This is just Ringgo in colour.”
Director Ross Harris adds, “I feel like Ringgo approaches his art whether it be music or drawing or paint from a place of playful curiosity but always ends up someplace deep and truly resonant. I aspire to the same process.”
Ringgo in Colour also includes appearances from Devin Morrison, who is in Ringgo’s live band and sings on the record, and arrives after the aforementioned Rare Pleasure was released earlier this month via Stones Throw Records. Mndsgn’s third album on the label, the record, which SPIN called “a monument to life’s basic delights,” truly shows the artist’s evolution from his roots as a heralded beatmaker to vocalist, songwriter, and arranger.
Though he began writing for the album in 2018, the final recordings took just a week in studio with the help of trusted collaborators: Swarvy on bass, guitar and as Musical Director for the sessions, Stones Throw label mate Kiefer Shackelford on keys, drum work by Will Logan, the blessed percussion of Carlos Niño, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson on strings, and accompanying vocals from Fousheé and Anna Wise.
The follow-up to 2016’s Body Wash, Rare Pleasure includes the previously-released singles “Medium Rare,” “Slowdance” and “Hope You’re Doin’ Better” and follows his virtual release show and his two sold-out shows at The Lodge Room in LA earlier this month. Inspired by soundtrack music, samba, exotica and ’70s/’80s library records, the album is intensely intimate, sourcing lyrics from Mndsgn’s family and interpersonal experiences, and reflective of the world at large. Despite the tenderness of the recordings, the music is joyfully vibrant and draws on Mndsgn’s formative experiences as a b-boy, showcasing a range of rhythms that will make you want to groove. Take a listen to Rare Pleasure here.
1. Rare Pleasure I
2. Truth Interlude
3. 3Hands : Divine Hand I
4. Hope You’re Doin’ Better
5. Rare Pleasure II
9. Rare Pleasure III
10. Medium Rare
11. Rare Pleasure IV
12. Colours Of The Sunset
13. Divine Hand II
Watch the first episode of Ringgo in Colour here.
Rema drops Afrobeat track dedicated to women around the globe
For the third week in a row, Rema is set to release “anotha banga.” Dropping on Mavin Records/Jonzing World, “Woman” is a song that expresses his appreciation and admiration for all females.
Recently crowned Apple Music’s Up Next artist – previously awarded to Billie Eilish, Khalid & H.E.R – Afropop’s prince Rema has now released a trio of singles throughout June and July. He kicked things off with “Ginger Me,” a song created in a late-night studio session in London with UK producer The Elements. Quickly followed by trap-influenced track “Alien” which took us on a trippy journey through the mind of a young heartbreaker.
Crediting his parents for introducing him to Fela Kuti & 2Face, Rema draws influences far beyond West Africa with Bollywood, Trap, Afrobeats, and Pop all becoming part of his trademark sound. With co-signs from the likes of Drake, Barack Obama and now Rihanna, Rema is on his way for a global takeover.
Stream “Woman” via Spotify below.
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