Kwabs : Love + War #Replay

Lately I’ve been walking through life on the rhythm of Kwabs’ baritone voice. He recently released his addictive debut Love + War on Deezer and it’s been pretty much on repeat since I first clicked “play”.

Normally I refrain from playing a song I like too often, because I don’t want to risk getting tired of it. Kwabs’ Love + War album however is so diverse, it doesn’t get old. It has so many layers and covers so many different styles, it keeps fitting every mood and still surprises. It varies from poppy tunes (you might get some boysband flashbacks when listening to Fight for Love, don’t know why, I just did), to classic R&B (with nineties and early nillies influences), to deep soul. Instant classic if you ask me.

Most of you might already know “Walk”. It has hit the radio charts hard. Listening to the CD it won’t be the only one of his songs that will demand airplay, they’re all radio-ready. If you haven’t heard “Walk” yet, you can take a listen and look here, because the clip is easily as intriguing as the song.

His lyrics tell complex stories and will speak to you again and again. Heartbreak, relationships, pride, … You usually feel more uplifted after listening to Kwabs. At least I do.

Personal favorite: Forgiven

If it’s too much for you to take,
Then save yourself and walk away
‘Cause we can’t stand on shaken stone
Head to head, two hearts alone

… and Saved

Are the synths and poppy effects not your style? He has acoustic sets too. Go to YouTube and type in “Kwabs” + “original” or “stripped back” and you get pretty damn good music videos with just him, a pianist or a guitarist, and some backing vocals.

At first listen he might remind you of James Blake, whose Retrograde had me mesmerized for a couple of weeks, and you would not be the only one. He even covered The Wilhelm Scream, which is pure bliss.

So if you’re looking for something fresh with substance, an infectious rhythm and a voice that gets under your skin, you might want to give this guy a try. Make sure to check out Kwabs’ YouTube channel as well, because his music video’s are all works of art.

Icy & Sot – Iranian Underground Art

Icy and Sot, a band of brothers armed with a talent for graffiti and stencil art, spraypainted themselves from the streets of Tabriz, Iran, right into the country’s underground youth/urban culture. Defying law and censorship, their talent brought the two young artists to Brooklyn.

A bold, but necessary move since western art has been forbidden in Iran since the revolution of ’79. This is also the reason why you won’t find Icy and Sot’s work on the streets of Iran. They always had to document their work digitally fast, because graffiti would often be removed after one or two days, making their work ephemeral. At least in Brooklyn they can legally show their art and work in peace, without risking being thrown in jail or getting physique punishment.

Nevertheless the underground art scene in Iran flourishes. With talented filmmakers, musicians, writers and other artists finding their voice in the shadows of the law, it seems like the oppression is kindling the artists’ fire. Many of the Iranian creative crowd find themselves in similar positions as Icy & Sot, and decide to make the move to America, who in recent years seem to have been welcoming foreign artists. The brothers also made the leap inspired by a befriended punk rock band named The Yellow Dogs (see insert below), who fled Iran in favour of Brooklyn. The band’s manager, Salehezadeh (an Iranian-American) embraced the two boys upon their arrival and took them under his wings.
Icy & Sot - made in Iran ft. yellow dogs

At the moment they even have an exhibition going in Europe. They are currently showcasing their work in Amsterdam at The ABC “American Book Center” Treehouse [Opening Saturday, September 13th – 16:00 to 21:00]. You can even meet the artists on Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th of September. Find more information on the expo and the boys here.

More information on Icy & Sot you can find on their website (be sure to check out their videos ) and don’t forget to follow them on Instagram and Facebook.

See them in action here…

POP FICTION ILLUSTRATIONS

Beery Method a graphic company founded by Nick Berry. His art is heavily influenced by pop culture, the underground scene, pulp horror comics and the music industry. 

Society6 is still selling his pop fiction art as high-quality prints, iphone cases and even polyester pillows!

unicorn godfather HERT Beery-Method-illustration-4-580x772 louis vuiitton mickey