Uncharted Territory: Sungha Jung Preps New Record, Ben Howard Folks Around
Fifteen year-old guitar virtuoso Sungha Jung bolted up the Uncharted yet again this week, as anticipation for his second solo record, "Irony," approaches. Set to drop on September 21, Jung released a trailer comprised of clips of him throughout the recording process, which has garnered over 96,000 views so far. If that weren't enough, Jung saw his Last.fm plays go from almost 300 to more than 1,400 this past week -- all of this enough to bump him from No. 23 to No. 6 on Uncharted.
Making his Uncharted debut this week at No. 31 is folk artist Ben Howard, who's set to release his first record, "Every Kingdom," on Oct. 3 in his native U.K. Howard has seen a notable surge in week-to-week play increases, while the video for single "Keep Your Head Up" has earned more than 187,000 views since its premiere one Aug. 18. As the "Every Kingdom" release approaches, it will be interesting whether Howard's buzz builds into something more.
Other Uncharted first-timers are When Saints Go Machine, an electro-pop group all the way from Copenhagen, who find themselves at No. 45 this week. The band recently released their debut record, "Konkylie" on !K7 records, and this week Pitchfork featured the synth-funk album cut, "Kelly." Thanks to the post, which was paired with a remix courtesy of Los Angeles producer Shlohmo, When Saints Go Machine saw a huge increase in their SoundCloud plays, notching more than 19,000 this week after about 2,700 last week.
Climbing from No. 27 to No. 19 is pop songstress Neoclubber, who saw a spike in SoundCloud plays as word of her new single "S.O.S." spreads. The song itself has notched over 5,000 plays since its release on Sept. 7, while as a whole, Neoclubber nearly 25,000 SoundCloud plays total. Another reason for Neoclubber's rise is she cracked the Top 10 (landing at No. 8), of internet radio site, Jango.
Finally, one of Uncharted's more interesting this story is the quick rise and fall of Purity Ring. After an impressive showing last week -- debuting at No. 19 on the strength of their Pitchfork-approved single "Belispeak" -- Purity Ring find themselves at No. 42, their SoundCloud plays dropping from just about 32,500 to just over 18,000. That said, the drop isn't that peculiar: Purity Ring are a very young band who have only released three tracks, including "Belispeak." The drop may not necessarily indicate declining interest in Purity Ring, but rather just a result of having so little material available. Such is the need-it-now mentality of the Internet.
Elsewhere, our old pal Traphik finds himself back at No. 1, with DJ Bl3nd, Your Favorite Enemies, Tyler Ward and Maddi Jane filling out the rest of the Top 5 (in that order). It should be noted also that after claiming the No. 1 spot last week, viral video success story Strange Talk seem to have dropped off the chart completely.