We pick the hottest new acts so you can tell your friends you heard them first. Meet English bedroom-pop artist Oscar Welsh showcasing feel-good melodies and laidback rhythms on his new EP 'Aestival'.
Rising UK bedroom-pop artist Oscar Welsh is carving out his own space thanks to his knack for crafting feel-good melodies and laidback rhythms that perfectly encapsulate what it’s like to be a teenager growing up in today’s world.
We last caught up with the London-via-Suffolk singer-songwriter and producer a year ago, to celebrate the release of his debut record, Vernal. Across its five-tracks, Welsh’s lo-fi, sun-soaked jams were on full display – as was his talent for crafting laidback grooves and honey-smooth melodies.
Now, 12 months later, we meet Welsh with his next record in hand – his latest EP Aestival. The woozy, dreamy bedroom indie-pop of his debut is still present, but it is clear that Welsh has been doing some growing up.
Capturing the sun-drench joy of summer in an almost 16-minute package, the groovy beats, light-hearted, playful lyrics, and undeniable charisma on show should belong to an artist far beyond his years. But as Oscar Welsh continues to prove time and time again, this is exactly what he does.
Aestival is just me experimenting with my tracks, exploring new genres past bedroom pop. This EP represents the growth in my music taste and the maturing of my sound.
Never one to be defined by genre, Welsh’s pop sound is infused with a world of sounds and inspirations – from soul to hip hop, indie-pop to R&B – and with artists from Stevie Wonder to Ed Sheeran, California bedroom-pop artist Still Woozy or Maryland rapper JPEGMafia all on his high-rotation playlist, it’s any wonder you’d have a hard time pinning down his sound.
Balance that with his forays into learning classical songs on piano and you’re diving into a world that is both drenched in the present and somewhat unplaceable.
It was the legend himself, Stevie Wonder, that kicked started Welsh’s creative flame all those years ago, and then the success of Ed Sheeran – from the same town and the same school – that continued to stoke it. Welsh dabbled with music in his early teens, but it wasn’t until he began to experiment with production and beat-making (he is completely self-taught, by the way) that things started happening.
Between the forward-thinking production and inescapable, catchy hooks on show across Aestival, Oscar Welsh is providing a fresh take on his own experience of growing up, touching on all the problems and tribulations that young adults face in a way that is both intimate and relatable.
Gaining support from various tastemakers around the world including BBC Radio, Complex and DIY Magazine and gaining well over 10 million streams, Welsh has neatly cemented himself as an exciting artist to watch.
My EP is the result of me having some more fun with my music. Instead of the usual indie sound, I’ve tried some new genres, and ideas. The word ‘Aestival’ is latin for ‘belonging or relating to Summer’, and to me it represents me relaxing and soaking the sun, channelling that into some cool new music. The one thing I’d say is don’t take ‘Aestival’ too seriously, I’m just having fun with it.Oscar Welsh on his new EP ‘Aestival’
To celebrate the release of his new EP ‘Aestival’, Oscar Welsh shares his favourite songs for the summer.
Check out ‘Aestival’ by Oscar Welsh:
Oscar Welsh’s favourite songs for the summer:
A$AP Rocky – Sundress
“‘Sundress’ came out a little while before I started properly listening to it, but I remember me and my mates playing that tune Summer 2019. If that isn’t a summer tune then I don’t know what is. If you watch the music video you can tell the song has got undertones of darkness, violence etc, so it’s got that light summery sound with deep shit going on in the lyrics.”
dialE – Made in the East
“This guy is insane, stop reading me waffling and go listen to this song.”
Collistar ft Tempo – 0753 (South Remix)
“I’m really into underground lofi UK music. Lead by the likes of Lord Apex and ayrtn, there’s a new scene emerging of lofi production with young undiscovered rappers spitting on top. This song switches the whole scene up a little bit with a slightly faster, garage inspired beat.”
Steve Lacy – Ryd
“This song’s about having someone ride you while you’re driving, had to include it on the list.”
Knucks – Home
“Similar to the music I was talking about before, but more jazzy, Knucks blends saxophone melodies from local producer instrumentalist ‘Venna’ and extended chords to create a dark and rich sound in ‘Home’. Again this is one of those songs me and my friends discovered and started playing frequently last summer.”
Orion Sun – El Camino
“This song just feels smooth and flowey, if I was chilling by a pool on a hot summer’s day I’d most likely play this tune. Feels like I’m swimming when I hear Orion’s whisper-rapping. So sick.”
Sam Wise – Cheque Came
“I just love sax+jazz+uk rappers. Sam Wise and Knucks are at the forefront of this new genre and I’m loving it.”
Stevie Wonder – Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I’m Yours)
“You can’t forget about Stevie. I imagine this being played at a summer party, where the teens finally appreciate some boomers have taste. Genuinely though, no one is going to match classic Motown artists like Wonder, Marvin Gaye or the Jackson 5.”
Check out the full playlist:
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