FFO: Tame Impala, Bombay Bicycle Club, The XX, Mac DeMarco
Canterbury based Hydromag is the solo project of multi-instrumentalist Josh Best-Shaw. His debut EP Sweet Obsession, released in June and recorded in his bedroom, is comprised of four self-produced tracks – Sweet Obsession, Let it Out, I Need to Know, and Primrose Hill, and you won’t be able to get them out of your head. This EP has a factor that not just anyone can achieve in their bedroom. Musically, it combines contemporary hip hop production with a psychedelic vibe and basslines driving throughout. From my first listen, I was immediately reminded of Tame Impala, it is VERY Tame Impala, and I love it. Josh’s rich and ambient vocals are supported by melodic guitar lines which builds a landscape you will definitely get lost in. I Need to Know has received support from BBC Introducing and Radio 1 prior to the EP release. Of the EP Josh said “a few months ago, I locked myself in my bedroom after the end of a relationship. I didn’t know what to do with myself apart from write some songs about it. Part of me wanted to write on behalf of everyone who had ever felt as I was feeling, so although lyrically the songs are about my experience, I like to think they are relatable”. And they are, we’ve all been there, heartbreak unfortunately is just part of the human condition.
You can listen to Hydromag‘s EP below, it’s wonderful. The title track is perhaps my favourite, starting with gorgeous piano which creatures a beautiful atmosphere before introducing Joe’s vocals which are utterly mesmerising. It builds into something you’d expect Kevin Parker to have written and it’s excellent. Primrose Hill provides the perfect finale for Sweet Obsession, it keeps you nodding your head along to sun skissed, soothing beats, whilst Joe’s silky vocals remove every pesky thought from your head, locking it in a jar for you to worry about another day. Hydromag is something special, and I’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for new material in future.