Purple Pop: katie MAC, Guyville, Mark Klaver, mergui, Joost Laméris, Madisyn Gifford, Jennie Harluk, & LACES

In the ancient world, purple was originally the colour reserved for the imperial families of Rome, Persia and Egypt and while it’s no longer elitist, there’s still something special to be had to the red-meets-blue hue. Our Purple Pop selection showcases the most luxurious, beautiful and unmissable pop music finds for our ears to yours.

katie MAC really embodies why we love pop music. It’s her fierce originality, unapologetic femininity and infectious pop hooks in new single ‘STFU’ that we can’t resist. Like many pop songs, it’s a break-up anthem but with the twist of wanting to “shut the fuck up” about the ex, but not being able to. It’s an edgy yet relatable pop banger centering katie MAC’s sharp wit, clever lyrics and commercial sensibility.

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Continuing that insatiable mix of potent vulnerability, heartbreak and catchy pop, we have ‘Boy + Girls w/ Guitars’ from indie-rock duo Guyville, aka Kat Hamilton and Emily Hulslander. This light-touch approach to pop songwriting mixed in with confessional lyrics and folky tones bring to life the classic tale of falling in love with talented people, only to discover not much lies beneath. You can’t help but relate to this sing-along worthy tune.

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Let’s mix things up with the next single from Mark Klaver, which is a sensitive, radio-ready, folk-pop song in a modern singer-songwriter style. At odds with the confident title ‘Superhuman’, the sweeping ballad with its organic percussion and hand-plucked acoustic guitar is all about being vulnerable, fallible and honest. It’s an utterly heart-touching song that frames the most human parts of an individual.

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Standing at the intersection between bedroom-pop and indie-rock you’ll find promising newcomer mergui, who uses first English language single ‘Sucks To Know You (FU)’ is an unmissable listen. This cathartic listen is all about the chaotic and intense aftermath of a break-up. At the forefront of an off-kilter beat and slick guitar riff is the Israeli artist’s powerful vocal which adds a raspy touch to those infectious pop melodies.

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There’s clearly something in the air this week as we have yet another post-relationship track in our Purple Pop playlist, but that’s also the beauty of making lists like this, you’re able to see all the different approaches to a similar topic in one place. For the Dutch creative Joost Laméris, he’s opted for measured pace that you’ll hear in new single ‘Never Feels Real’, which unravels the thoughts and feelings after leaving a toxic connection behind. The tranquil track, with links to chill-hop and ambient music, is a purposefully designed piece of escapism from uncertain emotions.

Follow Joost Laméris on Instagram.

With young artist Madisyn Gifford, we take a pause from the break-up pop songs and jet off to O’ahu, one of the beautiful islands that make up Hawaii and where the songwriter spent the second half of her 21st of life. After dealing with the disappointment brought on by covid-19 and other life circumstances in the first half of that year, she found renewed joy and peace in a new place. With single ’21’, written alongside Jared Manierka, she captures the hope, optimism, playfulness of embarking into adulthood.

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Simple put, ‘Party for Two’ from rising Canadian singer-songwriter Jennie Harluk is a summer smash. It has everything you could want from a holiday pop song – gorgeous lead vocals, electro-pop rhythms, dance influences and 00s’ pop guitars. It evokes the youthful and energetic of summer romances through the cinematic lens of Harluk’s invigorating songwriting, informed by her unique experience of synesthesia.

Follow Jennie Harluk on Instagram.

Earlier in the year, Los Angeles-based talent LACES (Jessica Vaughn) released her Super Weirdo LP as a testament to coming through the other side of even the hardest of obstacles. From that record, we return to single ‘Say’ as an unplugged version where LACES is joined by musician Chris Ayer. It’s a blissful acoustic retake, led by a rich piano and given an even more human aspect to a song that explores the original songwriter’s shortcomings, struggles and shortcomings in a safe and secure space.

Follow LACES on Instagram.

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