New Artist Discoveries: Trix, Jai Merakai, Lala J and Ellen Mara
Our ‘New Artist Discoveries’ segment just does not stop. With up-and-coming artists debuting some of the nation's strongest tracks each week, it is only necessary for us to shed some spotlight on these rising talents. Pushing the Australian hip-hop, New Wave and R&B scene to greater heights, Sydney-based artists Trix and Ellen Mara diverge into their own eccentric pathways through their latest releases, Melbourne’s Jai Merakai isn’t afraid to speak her mind on her EP ‘Unbothered’ and Perth-based rapper Lala J hits us with the deep and sensual track entitled ‘Late Night’.
Song: ‘Cry No More’
Sydney rapper Trix has just released ‘Cry No More’, an introspective and heartfelt track that showcases her versatility as an artist. Earlier this year Trix debuted with ‘Mean Girls’ a confident and feisty song that had everyone feeling like their baddest self. So, it’s safe to say that the mellowed ‘Cry No More’ came as a surprise to listeners; although, the track did not disappoint. Unlocking some of her raw childhood memories, Trix looks back on how far both her and her family have come. The nostalgic track’s production is a beautiful blend of new-school and old-school, incorporating the 1979 Supreme Jubilees gospel ‘It’ll All Be Over’. Trix's vocal ability to fuse these flavours together is truly phenomenal and I cannot wait for her to release more tracks like this one.
Song: ‘Play It Cool’
Jai Merakai is fearless on her latest EP entitled ‘Unbothered’, reaffirming her self-confidence and self-worth to listeners. The second track of the EP, ‘Play It Cool’ is fueled by the Melbourne singer’s angelic and vast vocal capability. Jai’s riffs transcend perfectly with her nonchalant lyricism as she highlights how one's ego can ruin their entire aura - “One second guess, I leave your ego with a bruise when I say I’m not interested”. Jai isn’t afraid to put someone in their place when needed, and her entire EP triumphantly cements that she will continue to be ‘Unbothered’ by any bullshit that comes her way.
Genre: Rap X R&B
Song: ‘Late Night’
Serving bars from Australia's West Coast, Lala J and MIN have linked up for an intimate and sensual track known as ‘Late Night’. The song begins with MIN’s familiar harmonies setting the seductive mood as he breaks down the infatuation he feels for that special someone. Kicking in with her assertive bars, Lala J shows em who’s in control as she firmly states how she expects to be treated and emphasises that she’s not settling for anything less. This is Lala J’s third release of the year and it is clear that she undoubtedly won’t stop until she achieves all of her aspirations.
Genre: Soul X Jazz
Song: ‘Liquid Gold’
Get grooving with Ellen Mara’s ‘Liquid Gold’, a fusion of Jazz, R&B and a whole lotta Soul. The Sydney-based singer has carved her own unique lane in the industry and this track further establishes the abundance of talent this country’s soul scene has to offer. The harmonious composition is layered with keys, drums, trumpets, saxophones and more, enabling this track to teleport you into a completely different era. Accompanied by Ellen's soft yet powerful voice, the track sees Ellen concluding that letting people into her heart can be challenging and on the rare occasion that she does it’s ‘like Liquid Gold running through [her] head to [her] toes’. I can imagine this track being performed live and me wishing that the performance would never end, just truly sublime.
Words by Violet Murphy