Cut + paste to generate? Reimagine & recreate? Stay up late to innovate? We celebrate 5 original acts that have each arrived at stellar songs through unique approaches to songwriting. From dark beats to bright bleeps, this is the fifth and last artist of our rhythmic rundown of ear essentials for the fall!
On the map > Los Angeles
Mark our words: if you don’t yet know L.A. songstress Banks (né Jillian Banks), you will this fall when she releases Goddess, her debut record. Why? Well, imagine a breathy take on mid-90s Aaliyah-style R&B vocals combined with the glitchy, nocturnal beats of The Weeknd. There’s a teaspoon of Lana Del Rey’s darkness in there as well as a tablespoon of Robyn’s pop sensibilities. Banks is basically iTunes gold for cold, fall strolls or those mornings best spent hiding under the comforter. But, if you want a head start, we encourage you to check out London, her infectious EP from last year. It landed in the Top 3 of BBC’s Influential Sound of 2014 poll―whose previous nominees included Adele and Frank Ocean―so you know Banks has top-notch talent.
While her music’s still flying under the radar, Banks has been doing everything right this year. She played Coachella, Bonnaroo and Governors Ball as well as appeared on the cover of V Magazine’s Spring 2014 music issue alongside heavy hitters like Lorde and Haim. And, she signed with the legendary music label Harvest, making her label mates with both Morrissey and Death Grips (RIP). While it helps to be surrounded by greatness, Banks is a fully formed artist―so check out her SoundCloud and get lost in her dark, velveteen world.
250,000+ combined followers on Facebook and Twitter
“Waiting Game’’ has 3.2 million streams on SoundCloud
Check out Banks’s website
Illustration by Hisashi Okawa