Women In Music

What is it like working in the music industry as a woman?

Video Interview: Josh Savage

We jumped on a boat in London and had a chat about "Ghosts", setbacks and more.

7 Songs: Savannah Outen

The talented Savannah talks us through seven songs and seven emotions.

Video Interview: Rhys Lewis

Check out this little chat about polaroids, important messages in songs and more.


Join house in the sand's Band Shirt Gang and be featured on HITS!

Album Review: "Haggarty" by Covey

Hey guys!

There are so many reasons why we are absolutely thrilled to have a proper team behind house in the sand.

One of the biggest perks is that we get to cover music, one person alone couldn't even start to discover.
We have a bigger variety of tastes, locations and styles - and we're all benefiting from it.

Today our new writer and photographer Carolyn Lederach makes her debut and shares her thoughts on a brilliant new album with us.

Before you dive into the review, please find Carolyn online and support her:
website | twitter | facebook | instagram


Band: Covey
Title: Haggarty
Genre: Indie, Folk-Rock
Label: Independent
Release Date: 22nd September 2017

Covey is a Folk-Rock quartet from Boston, USA.

The project was brought to life by frontman Tom Freeman, whose influences range from Nick Drake to Fleet Foxes and Neutral Milk Hotel.
Print and online publications, as well as radio stations are huge fans of Covey's sound.

Covey are:
Tom Freeman
Dillon Rovere
Guillermo Goldschmied
Adam Marks

Covey have opened for acts such as Vagabon, High As A Kite, Hozier and more.
Without any major label support, the band has attracted over 110,000 monthly listeners on Spotify.

And now the band is here with their debut album, "Haggarty". 

So let's check it out!

1) ////
2) Call Home
3) Same White Shoes
4) Old Man
5) Stockholm Syndrome
6) 1955
7) Funeral Home
8) Eyesore
9) You Don't Need Me
10) In Or Out

Haggarty begins with the lovely "////".
Possibly the most upbeat track on the album, throwing you right into the special songwriting that Tom possesses and echoes throughout the album.

"Call Home" follows with one of the songs that caught our ears when we heard it live a few months back at a Sofar Sounds show.
"I'll call you more, but I'm much too drunk. A touch too often."
Probably words we can all utter at some point in our lives. A perfect example of the flow of the rest of the songs on the album. There's something simplistic about it, capturing an honest feeling, and setting it all to something slow and steady, with the perfect build-up to end it all.

The rest of the album moves into a slightly slower pace, but in the best of ways.
Such with "1955", where we're taken into something a little more personal and raw, coming out thinking a little more about your life.

To sum it up: Stepping back into the backlog of Covey over the past three years or so, you might find a lot of pleasant surprises in the newest release, Haggarty.
Now back and armed with a new band, frontman Tom Lloyd-Freeman is off to set a new path for Covey with their first full album release.

It may have only been a year since we last heard from Covey with a two song release of "Bows" and "Daisy". Both songs in the vein of your classic Covey tracks, the dark and relatable lyrics set to an atmospheric and soothing folky sound.
Now taking a turn to present day, we find Covey with the same relatable lyrics, but taking on a slightly new, lighthearted and lovable sound, dare we say danceable at times?
Tom has a gift for being able to make sad content catchy.

You should listen to these tracks: Same White Shoes, Call Home, 1955, ////

- buy or stream "Haggarty" here -

Covey online: Bandcamp | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Thank you for your visit!


Credits // Words Intro: Vanessa Jertschewske | Words Review: Carolyn Lederach | Image: via Covey

Gig Photos: Mutemath at Brooklyn Steel, New York City

Hey guys!

Gig season has officially kicked off for us over here at house in the sand.

Team HITS already has a bunch of exciting gigs lined up, which we'll be documenting for you to enjoy.

Our NYC based photographer Gina Garcia is the first one to treat us with some absolutely brilliant shots of Mutemath and their support acts Romes and Colony House.

As always, we are so excited to have a talented photographers from all over the world on our team,
so we'd love for you to check out Gina's work.

Find Gina online: website | twitter | instagram


Date: 20th September 2017
Venue: Brooklyn Steel, New York City (USA)

Act #1: Romes

Romes are an Alternative band from Toronto, Canada.

The four members - two of them are Canadian, two are Irish - met at school in Wicklow, Ireland.
They've played together in multiple arrangements for over 10 years, before moving to Toronto and starting Romes in 2015.

Romes are:
Jacob Alexander (vocals)
Nicolas Amadeus (drums)
James Tebbitt (guitar)
Andrew Keyes (bass)

In 2016, they released their debut EP, "Believe".
The band quickly managed to build a loyal fanbase with their gripping and refreshing sound.

Romes debut album will be out on October 6th, so keep an eye out for that.

Check out "Summer Sound" below:

Romes online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram


Act #2: Colony House

Colony House are a four piece band from Tennessee, USA.
They can be genrefied as Indie-Rock with their own unique twist to it.

Colony House are:
Caleb Chapman (lead vocals, guitar)
Will Chapman (drums)
Scott Mills (guitar, backing vocals)
Parke Cottrell (bass, keys, backing vocals)

Formed in High School in 2009, the band started to self-release EPs, before then releasing their debut album "When I Was Younger" in 2014.

Since then Colony House have made their radio and TV debuts, toured with acts such as Needtobreathe, Switchfoot and more, and played at festivals.

Their recent album "Only The Lonely", released in January 2017, was well received and appreciated by their fans. 

Check out this live performance of "You & I":

Colony House online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram


Headliner: Mutemath

Mutemath are an Alt-Rock band from New Orleans, USA.

Formed in 2002, the band has developed their own signature sound which is influenced by 60s & 70s Soul and Psychedelic Rock.

Mutemath are:
Paul Meany (vocals, keyboards)
Todd Gummerman (guitar)
Jonathan Allen (bass)

They have released multiple EPs and LPs over the years, with "Play Dead" being their most recent 2017 album.

The Play Dead Tour is making its' way through the United States, so make sure to check out their social media pages for tour dates.

Check out the music video for "War" below:

Mutemath online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram


And that's it!

Were you at the show? Or have you seen any of the bands live before?
We'd love to hear your thoughts, so feel free to drop us a comment below.

Thank you for your visit!


Credits // Words: Vanessa Jertschewske | Photography: Gina Garcia | **photo pass and ticket have kindly been provided**

Release Of The Day: "Wish I Was Sober" by Rhys Lewis

Hey guys!

There are some artists, whose songs are always such fun to get to know.

Whenever we hear a new track, we try to get to know the song, before we even consider reviewing it. 
We want to understand its' characteristics, its' mood and the overall feeling that it captures.

Sometimes, that can be quite intense and time consuming.
It's a bit like meeting people, some are fun to learn more about - others aren't.

Rhys Lewis is one of those acts who puts out music, that we love getting to know.
It's like we win a new friend, everytime he releases something.

So let's befriend this brand new release.

- Release Of The Day -
"Wish I Was Sober" by Rhys Lewis

Rhys Lewis is a singer/songwriter based in London, UK.

His sound is going to make every classic Soul lover's heart beat - combining Soul with elements of Folk, Rock and Blues, Rhys has quickly created a signature sound which will draw your attention to his work.

Spending most of the past year in studios in London, Nashville, Stockholm, Los Angeles, Berlin and Isle Of Wight, the young musician has been writing and recording songs for his upcoming debut album.
His debut single "Waking Up Without You" hit #1 on Spotify's Viral Chart and reached 170 000 streams within two weeks.

Follow-up single "Living In The City" was just as strong and has now been streamed over 1.3 million times - a statement which probably speaks for itself.

His third single "I Know The Feeling" was written for a friend who was going through a tough time. The song and its music video adddress the importance of men's mental health.

Followed by "Be Your Man", a heartbreakingly beautiful ballad that won us all over with it's simplicity and straight-forward attitude.

Rhys has been busy releasing one fabulous track after the other, whilst touring and creating an even bigger buzz.
To catch one of his upcoming Europe and UK shows, make sure to click here for the dates.

Today he's here with a new track, so let's check it out!

"Wish I Was Sober" is one of those tracks, that you'll put on replay without even thinking about it.

It starts off with gripping clapping, which makes you want to get involved and clap along.
Soft choir backing vocals by London's House Gospel Choir appear throughout the song and add a lot of depth and soul.

The first verse starts of simple - clapping, choir and main vocals accompanied by inviting piano chords.
Soon the proper beat kicks in, turning the song into an up-beat track.

Rhys' vocals are as expressive and passionate as ever, showcasing his wide range and highlighting the energy of the song with raspier notes.

It seems, the first thing people notice about Rhys' music is his voice.
And we totally get why - it's refreshing, it's souly and warm.

But not mentioning his storytelling and writing skills would be an absolute crime.

The instrumentation runs so smoothly - and has clearly been crafted with thought and care - yet it's still edgy enough to be exciting and attention grabbing.

If such bangers come out every time Rhys isn't sober, the next round is on us!

Listen to "Wish I Was Sober" below:

- buy or stream "Wish I Was Sober" -

Rhys Lewis online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | YouTube | Instagram

More of Rhys Lewis on house in the sand: Video Interview | Song Title Challenge

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jertschewske | Image: via Universal Music UK

7 songs: Saint Alto

Hey guys!

When I got the idea for our '7 songs' feature, I did not know if anyone would even enjoy it.

There's always a bit of a risk with new segments,
some turn into a new favourite,
others don't. At all.

Luckily this one is doing more than well - and not just you, the readers, are really digging it.
But also the artists themselves.
Of course that's a blogger's dream, so we're going to feature the hell out of this.
You better be ready!

Let's get to know today's DJ!

Saint Alto is the new moniker of Birmingham's Phil Barber who was previously known as one half of Winter 1982.
Refreshing Alternative Folk might be the best way to describe the sound, however, listeners are always in for a surprise.

Even though Saint Alto is still a new-ish project to the industry, BBC Introducing is already as excited about it as we are.
With a few songs out already, we've heard enough to become big fans.

So let's check out Phil's 7 songs.


1) a song which makes you dance
"Tainted Love" by Gloria Jones

It's a great song.
Such power, such rhythm.
I love the way Northern soul revived all these records and set them against the grimness of working Britain at that time.
It's pure energy and positivity but the lyrical content is so at odds with that and I love that about the song. It's a song that makes you get up and dance, but it's so much more complex than that too. Add to that an incredible vocal performance from Gloria Jones and I can't think of many better records.


2) a song that calms you down
"8 (circle)" by Bon Iver

This was really hard to choose, because I don't think I ever really listen to music to specifically calm me down.
I'm not a very calm person, and although music does all sorts of things to me and for me, I really had to think hard about something that calms me. The closest I could get, was Bon Iver's "8 (circle)" from the album "22, A Million".
I could have picked any number of songs from this incredible album. "8 (circle), like so many of the other tracks, drowns you in a kind of warm digital fuzz. The warmth of the vocal against cold digital sounds, creates this incredible, strange, 'new and familiar' feeling, that seems to slow down time.
It's a completely new take on the genre and I get almost immediately lost in these beautiful songs.
I read that Justin Vernon struggles with anxiety and that this became an element of the production of the record.
I think it translates so delicately into this immersive songs - they are somehow full of tension, and soothing at the same time.


3) a song with a deep meaning
"In Twenty Years Or So" by Father John Misty

For me, Father John Misty (Josh Tillman) is the best lyricist currently working.
His latest album, "Pure Comedy", is an incredible record that begins as this cutting, satirical attack on contemporary society and ends as this very human, very personal experience.
This song is the last on the album, and after so much talk of apocalypse, consumerism and religion, focuses in on a tiny life affirming moment, where for just a moment he is able to feel content.
It's a beautiful song and completes an amazing journey through the record. It makes me reflect and it makes me feel hopeful.
I'm sort of suggesting listening to the whole album, is that cheating?


 4) a song that makes you feel nostalgic
"Red Morning Light" by Kings of Leon

This was the soundtrack to so many sticky floored, cheap drinks, indie club nights.
Kings of Leon were part of a wave of American Indie (The Strokes, The Killers, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs) that cut through to save us from such a poor period in music.
Pop Idol had just started, the charts were full of Gareth Gates, Hearsay, S Club 7, with totems of 90s Brit-Pop like Oasis losing momentum and quality.
That wave of Indie, along with new British Indie like Bloc Party, saved us and soundtracked a hundred weekends with spiky, guitar driven anthems.
Kings of Leon were the first band I saw that seemed otherworldly. They played a tiny gig at Bar Academy in Birmingham. They were so unknown at the time, they were able to come downstairs afterwards to drink at the bar.
Blunt cut fringes, long hair, beards, cuban heels, 70s leather jackets and denim flares. They were just 'something else'.
This song reminds me of all those nights out, becoming immersed in that world, that wave of music, being in bands, the pilgrimage to town on a Friday night and the chaos of the night bus home.


5) a song which has accompanied you for a while
"Keep the Car Running" by Arcade Fire

I can't believe that Neon Bible is 10 years old.
I still think it's an incredible piece of work, and this song stays with me as an example of a great song. The take on Folk is great - a really driven song with mandolin.
The song just builds and builds, full of anxiety and urgency. It's also heartbreaking lyrically, massive sounding musically and just a great track on a great album.
I come back to it regularly - half enjoying it, half trying to figure out how it works. Pretty close to perfect.


6) a song from your favourite genre
"re: Stacks" by Bon Iver

I'm back with Bon Iver.
In contrast to the song I went for earlier, what I love about this, is the simplicity.
I read that the songs on "For Emma, Forever Ago" were intended as demos to pitch to labels and publishers. They became the actual record and have a really beautiful, loose and haunted quality to them.
I love songs that cut straight through and connect with you whether you want them to or not.
This song stops me in my tracks every time, it's almost painful to listen to, it goes straight through me, it affects me.
Whether you can call songs that do that 'a genre', I don't know. But Folk, the confessional, painful songs of great singer/songwriters, really appeal to me - and this is as good as it gets.
I think I'm suggesting you listen to the whole album again, flouncing the rueles.
What a maverick.


7) a song by an artist / a band which has surprised you
"Thursday Girl" by Mitski

Mitski's album, "Puberty 2", was something I came across by total chance.
The album blew me away - it's such a strange mix of crunching, turn of the millennium guitars, almost Emo or Metal influenced, with something much more complex lyrically and tonally going on.
It's confessional, honest, full of hooks, odd songs, Pop songs - and it's just a brilliant piece of work.
"Thursday Girl" is dark and beautiful, almost like a hym, but broken, contemporary and rooted in a very human, modern experience.
A brilliant song by a really exciting artist.


What did you think of Phil's selection?
Make sure to listen to his music too.

Check out "Tell Me Something":

Saint Alto online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Soundcloud | Instagram

Previous '7 songs' features: Chris Stringer | Savannah Outen | Vanessa from HITS

Thank you for your visit!

Credits // Words Intro: Vanessa Jertschewske | Words '7 songs' & image: Saint Alto

Song Of The Day: "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy" by Rod Stewart feat. DNCE

Hey guys!

We love collaborations.
Especially when we wouldn't expect them to happen at all.

You know, when a combination of people working together seems so random, but ends up being genius.
When I first read about today's SOTD, I couldn't quite imagine what it was going to sound like, but I'm super glad I listened.

- Song Of The Day -
"Da Ya Think I'm Sexy" by Rod Stewart feat. DNCE

When renowned acts re-work their songs and release a different version of their classics, you might question if the new sound is going to convince you.

So, let's take a look at the 2017 version of Rod Stewart's "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy", featuring DNCE.

Now, we are pretty sure that most of you are familiar with Sir Rod Stewart.
He is one of the most successful British artists of our time and has managed to stay relevant for decades whilst still going strong.

For those of you, who haven't heard of DNCE it yet, please let us introduce you:
DNCE are a four piece outfit based in Los Angeles, US.

The band found together through a couple connections and is now here to share their funky Alternative sound with us.  

DNCE are:
Joe Jonas (vocals)
JinJoo Lee (guitar)
Cole Whittle (bass, keyboard)
Jack Lawless (drums

Their debut single "Cake By The Ocean" ended up double-platinum and allowed the band to enter the pop industry with a bang.

After releasing their debut EP "SWAAY", touring with Selena Gomez and winning "Best New Artist" at the MTV Video Music Awards, DNCE have created a lot of buzz for their debut album "DNCE" which they released in November 2016.

With an ever-growing fanbase and the big media loving their sound, DNCE haven't slowed down. "Kissing Strangers" ft. Nicki Minaj was one of 2017's catchiest tracks.

So - what happens when timeless legend Rod Stewart grabs one of the most exciting new bands?

The re-imagined version of "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy" made the wise decision of keeping the key elements; the funky bass line and iconic synths.
2017 has definitely been an influence on the track, giving the entire track a slightly more modern vibe.

Instead of Rod Stewart's smokey vocals, Joe Jonas' smooth voice takes the lead in the first verse and chorus.
He made it his own, whilst still keeping the all too familiar sound alive - adding a refreshing and quite impressive range to the song by showcasing the stronger elements of his voice.

But of course, we need the master of the track - Rod himself. He takes over with a grand entrance and is there to guide you through the song, as effortlessly smokey and cool as ever.

Although Rod Stewart makes the song what it is, DNCE's signature is still very present on the track. With their funky guitar riffs, attention grabbing beats and controlling bass performance.

We think this re-imagined version can definitely get the seal of approval.
We're digging it.

Watch the official lyric video for "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy" below:

- buy or stream "Da Ya Think I'm Sexy" -

Rod Stewart online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

DNCE online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube | Instagram

Thank you for your visit! 

Credits // Words: Vanessa Jertschewske | Image: via Rod Stewart online