Yes, ReverbNation is very much still a thing!
Ever since 2006, ReverbNation has been a key resource for musicians starting out their careers. Offering useful marketing tools and career management services for emerging independent music makers all over the world, many of the world’s most cherished artists have made use of the platform sometime along the way. When Co-Founder Lou Plaia invited me onto the platform as a curator – I couldn’t refuse.
When I was first approached to participate in a campaign on RN, I was apprehensive. Caught in the middle of drafting up two ghostwritten autobiographies and content with SubmitHub as a source for new music, I didn’t think I needed the extra hassle. However, within thirty minutes, I had found two songs worthy of a write up on the blog. Fast forward another couple of hours and another gem emerged from the crowd. Damn, I got hooked.
Having listened through as many submissions as I could, a shortlist was growing in the ‘save for later’ pile. This list, after further listening, has since been whittled down to five. I know it’s only my opinion but I’m fairly sure you will like these selections. A fun mix of genres and styles!
Ras Minano & The Hope of Africa Band / Africa Osuyeii
Adelaide-based Ras Minano and his Hope of Africa Band provide a welcome opening to this little list. Firmly rooted in his native Ghana, Minano’s sound is hard to ignore. Uplifting world music that would get the most sterile crowd swaying on the dance floor. Stylistically, it is comparable to London’s Nigerian import Dele Sosimi and that’s a pretty impressive comparison right there. On the go since 2006, Ras and his music has been cheering up many a keen audience for years. The Hope of Africa Band, a 6-10 piece ensemble, aim to spread hope wherever they go. Humanity has been tested recently with all this virus thing and music like this is sure to raise spirits along the way. Africa Osuyeii is as chilled as they come – some impressive brass notes too.
The Rayes / Two Legs
Next up is the chirpy indie sound of The Rayes, a band fronted by two sisters, Rebecca and Jordan Stobbe. The Seattle born duo, now based in New York, have been honing their trade since their teenage years and with the help of some friends, this is the result. Two Legs was the song that stood out for me as I searched through a bank of two thousand submissions. A well written and totally catchy track with plenty of endearing elements – there’s even some country thrown in too. Too good to overlook and it has a nice little animated vid to go alongside.
Home Is West / Mexico
Hellishly accomplished three piece Home is West and their bouncy Mexico single is the next worthy inclusion to this feature. A single that would, I’m sure, be a perfect accompaniment to a long-winding car journey across America. I say this as if I’ve got experience of such an event – in reality, I don’t have a driver’s licence and haven’t stepped foot in The States. Anywho, I think what I’m trying to convey in a really roundabout way is that this is top quality American indie music! Perfect for road tripping… across America.
Inkblot Astronaut / Boogy Man
High octane music coming out of Portland here from Inkblot Astronaut. Boogy Man has such an infectious opening verse doesn’t it? There’s a band from Dublin called The Minutes that process a similar old-fashioned and raucous sound. My sister saw them play a mid-day slot at a family friendly music festival in the city, only to be ushered away for shouting too many expletives on stage. Lunatics. This track has the hallmarks of another band of talented lunatics. Inkblot Astronaut are bloody cool and it’s a great band name too. Love this one.
Azure Wolf / Both Hands
To conclude this list of my favourite songs found on ReverbNation this year, we’ve got some indie/alternative rock from Winchester. Recent single, Honey Rush, and it’s shimmering electric guitar melodies caught my ear alongside the strong vocals of Victoria Backle. Their style is not unlike emerging London-based band POSE. This four-piece have such a lovely polished sound, although, a little darker than my usual taste. Both Hands is their latest release and it showcases the band’s expansive appeal.
About ‘The Sound Sniffer’
The Sound Sniffer is a one-man music blog which is still only a baby – Founded by Kevin Coakley, a music writer and ghostwriter, in early 2019. ‘The Sound Sniffer’ also runs gigs and showcases in London since Oct 2019. The showcases are picked from artists found in the blog’s submission inbox.
Check out my Interviews HERE