Oli Hannaford

Watch your backs Tom Misch and James Blake, there’s a new righteous dude in town and this one comes with backing from SIR ELTON JOHN HIMSELF!! Wowee we’ve been blasting out Oli’s satin-sweet sounds here at Cowbell HQ like its ear-kefir, and we’re 100% feeling the benefits. His latest offering ‘Pinstripes’, in collaboration with Dutch comrade Feiertag is a fine demonstration of his intoxicating grooves, helping to breathe a new life into London’s neo-soul scene. Here’s to hoping there’s a lot more where that came from…

Cara Rose

Whilst many of us certainly turned to music for positivity and any chance of a bedroom boogie over the last year, Glasgow-based singer-songwriter Cara Rose offered us musical therapy of a different but no less important kind. Cara’s debut EP Urges, released October last year, is a beautiful expression of emotional truths, brought to life by her stellar vocals and subtle piano arrangements. Have your Kleenex at the ready, ‘Learn to Speak’ could be the next John Lewis Xmas ad song. We’re calling it.


Here’s what you’re going to do: grab yourself a mixing bowl. Pour in two cups of Kaytranada beats, one cup of Mac Miller rhymes and fold GENTLY. Once you’ve got all that funk and hip-hop goodness beautifully incorporated into one smooth batter-batter, swing it in the oven at 180 until it’s golden-brown and smelling sumptuous. Get creative with the dance-decor; dad moves, the sprinkler, moonwalking – all are great with this dish so don’t be afraid to go all out. Et voila there you have it, Pace’s latest single ‘Living Backwards’. Bon appétit. 


With artists such as Arlo Parks and beabadoobee as its flag-bearers here in the U.K., bedroom pop will be remembered as the dominant sound of 2020, and certainly the sound of Gen Z. Dubliner EFÉ joined the conversation last year when she released her debut EP What Should We Do This Summer?, a sun-drenched blend of bedroom-soul and psych. Even though it’s all recorded and self-produced in her own home, EFÉ proved that you don’t need a fancy studio or gold-encrusted mics to create some groovin’. The EP’s laid-back, hazy sound complete with birds chirping in the background transports us to blue skies and rocket lollies. 


Be right back, Birmingham Royal Ballet, bevel-rimmed bowl, Bank of the Republic of Burundi – so many delightful meanings wrapped up in 3 little letters. The British Railways Board will be so delighted to hear that they now share an acronym with the hippest and hoppest new funk/R&B band, brb. Hailing from Singapore, brb.’s debut album relationshit, a glossy stream of modern and funkified hip-hop, took the Asian music scene by storm. Their latest single ‘move’ is undeniably catchy, and it’s only a matter of time before the rest of the world catches up.

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