Tesha

Tesha releases unconventional single 'Funeral' from upcoming EP

Taking cues from Kate Bush, Bjork, and lugubrious 4AD artists like This Mortal Coil and Dead Can Dance, Brooklyn's Tesha delivers a refreshingly anti-pop track to fight Christmas' usual sonic banalities. The edgy, electronic artist is about to release a new EP and just unveiled single Funeral, a track about her mother's funeral (Tesha lost both of her parents a few years ago). Otherworldly and minimal, the song is driven by a slow bass line and a plodding rhythm section, while almost unintelligible vocals seem to express a kind of thoughtful sorrow that sounds at once profound and alien. The EP is scheduled for a January 25th release. 

Zach's CMJ Day 2: The Glazzies, Bird Dog, Owel, Controller and Tesha

Wednesday night on the Lower East Side started with unabashed energy as Sag Harbor, New York-hailing duo The Glazzies performed its guitar-stormed tracks at Pianos' Upstairs Lounge. Along with drummer Dave Horn, whose Johnny Cash T-shirt added to the room's ominous yet warm aura, singer Peter Landi broke into tight songs that conveyed the passionate angst of Nirvana while burning the mirror-paneled stage with its own punk fire. Just across the street at Arlene's Grocery, New Jersey quintet Owel delivered a shinier but no less fiery sound, frontman Jay Sakong and his bandmates playing soaring, violin-girded cuts that recalled the grand-rock of Muse but glowed in a unique halo of ferocity and sonority. Fellow five-piece Controller (pictured, scheduled to play our Pianos indie show on Friday) took the bustling Arlene's next, jumping into pop-bubbled rock pieces that almost sounded like Bruce Springsteen beside a synth station. There was also something of '80s dance in these delightfully loud songs, as vividly seen in lead vocalist Jon Bellinger's elastic sways and swoons, the movements of a bashful master of ceremonies. Back at Pianos, the five mustached men of Los Angeles' Bird Dog brought things down to a somewhat calmer notch, their folk-inflected rock songs reaching particular beauty with gliding harmonies and topping the high-ceilinged hall with western sun. New York-via-Israel musician Tesha closed the evening a few blocks away at Fat Baby. Before a wall that had pictures of such hip-hop masters as Tupac, the computer-decked artist dipped into subtly moving fantasias of skipping beats and sputtering synths, almost holding time in a bewitchingly nocturnal instant and then releasing it back into the wee hours of the morning. - Zach Weg

New to NYC, from Israel: Tesha's brings her stylish synth pop to CMJ

Few things are more effective in grabbing our attention than really good press pictures, and Israeli electronic chanteuse Tesha - who recently moved to NYC - sure knows a thing or two about that. But looks are irrelevant if not supported by good music, and, in this case, support was found. Tesha plays a stylishly cinematic, vaguely jazzy form of synth pop, reminiscent of some of the less trippy trip hop bands like Lamb and Morcheeba, but entirely her own. Her voice is confident and full of character, and her comfort zone is in the downtempo side of things, which opens space for the creative electronic arrangements. On her Bandcamp profile you'll find an instrumental single and a three song EP, entitled "Crystallization," both released in 2014. We paricularly enjoyed opening track "Over the Edge" (streaming). We have three opportunities to catch her live this week within the CMJ music marathon.

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