Started off my morning with one of those angst ridden ideas in my head about “teacher privilege” (a rant for another day), so I was browsing through, trying to get my angst out, and here’s this great new jam from Melbourne trio CLAMM. They’ve just signed on with Meat Machine to release their debut LP, Beseech Me; you can check the video below to hear what they’re all about! It opens with this squalling wall of guitars, sort of muddy in nature, which I actually love, as it doesn’t really build much pop sensation at all (I needed that this morning!). They smash through the song at breakneck speed, delivering vocals with stabbing screams that rip through your speakers. Cathartic in every way; the LP drops on April 9th.
I was a big fan of Bluesbuster, the 2018 LP from German outfit Crabber, so if you’re digging on this, feel free to check that out as well. But, this tune is brand new, the lead single off a forthcoming LP that’s slated for release later this year. My ears hear a middle ground somewhere between Boyracer and Teenage Fanclub; its got that rambunctious attitude to it, though its naturally wrapped around the central coil of pop sensibility. This is the sort of timeless pop rock that curls my toes…nice melody, solid pace and a big little hook just waiting for you in the chorus. Stay tuned for more news on the new LP!
I’ve been really high upon Verandan since the band first came about, admittedly drawn to them by Ville Hopponen’s connection to indiepop greats Cats on Fire. But, as all great songwriters do, he’s clearly crafting his own path with this new project. Today we bring you news that the band will release a brand new 7″ via Soliti and Cloudberry Records, two labels we love. This tune that accompanies the announcement has the group really settling into their subtle indiepop vibes, its almost like a laid back lounge performance. Where you typically find sharp guitars knifing through, you get a bit more warmth and swirling dream notes, letting the vocals come in with their melodic croon. Plus, the arrangements behind it all build in this texture that allows the song to brim with pop sensibility that goes beyond categorization. The 7″ will be available on February 20th.
Every list that really mattered at the end of 2020 had You Might Be Happy Someday by the Reds, Pinks & Purples at the top of their list (my personal list too!); it looks like the band will stake their claim to that same acclaim in 2021, as today they announce a new album, Uncommon Weather. Contrasting guitars jut against each other from the open, one ringing melodic and true, while the other seems intent on butting up against it with its angular discord. Fading away, it allows Glenn Donaldson to steady the ship, coolly feathering his vocals across the front of the mix, softly soothing slackers like Bob Pollard singing a bedtime lullaby. Perhaps my favorite bit survives beneath that voice; it recalls the timelessness of Sarah Records or even early K Records, with DIY jangles recorded to tape in solitude. This new record has a great new home too, with Slumberland Records slated to drop the LP on April 9th.
If I had to pick my favorite member of the Coathangers, it would surely be Stephanie Luke, so when she began her new project NRCSSST, you can bet I was ready to hop on board. The debut single from the group’s self-titled LP employs bits you’d come to expect from Luke, but with the presence of Dan Dixon on backing vocals, the song gets a slightly different build. Stephanie still has this slight gruff growl, though it’s polished to provide the central hook; the song’s first half really reminds me of classic pop punk from the early 00s before ya’ll got all cool. The latter half features Dixon primarily, and might be dipping the smallest toe in that new wave/post punk pond. Regardless, its got hooks and grit, and I’ll gladly take both on board. Look for the LP on February 12th via Slimstyle.
At the very tail end of last year, Dogs for Friends dropped their I’ll Pet You 4 Ever EP; perhaps not my favorite title ever, but dammit if the songs weren’t just really incredible. Today they drop their video for standout “King’s Dog,” so give a listen. It begins with this heavy haunting, dripping over this quietly propulsive beat; throughout the first minute or two you can hear these light guitar licks dancing about, but they finally kick in near the two minute mark, opening up the song to this divine bit of pop music. Felt like a really good way to start off the Tuesday morning.
Over a decade since they’ve been away, Ribbons return with an EP of reworked and remastered songs, all of which are unavailable in any format…until now! Honestly, I’m totally in love with this “Total Loss” tune; it sounds a lot like the post-punk that RVG is brandishing at the moment, only with a slightly softer blanket on the vocals of Jenny Logan. The drums roll along perfectly to match those dangling jangling guitar licks, all perfectly lined up to lead you towards an emphatic smash of a close. Those of you wanting to grab the band’s new Ribbons: Total Loss EP will have to wait until February 5th, but it sounds like it’ll be worth our time.
Our friends over at Indoor Creature have been hard at work prepping for the release of their new LP, Living in Darkness. Just this past weekend they dropped the debut single from the release, an upbeat pop swing that pulls in some R&B influences that are undeniably catchy. Lyrically, they’re definitely taking aim at the masses, taking to task all those seeking greed at the expense of their fellow citizens. Just be sure to save up your energy for the great little horn solo mid track…one of the many highlights in the band’s performance here. They’ll drop the new LP in May via the Record Machine.
Like many an artist in 2020, Mat Weitman found himself under lockdown at home, struggling to come to terms with a global pandemic and his growing depression. What is one to do? Well, as we know, you write a debut record for your project Hotels on Mars like Grief Museum, and you pour your soul into your songwriting. The first single to leak out into the world offers a glimpse at the world we’re hoping we can put beside, with Weitman and the guitars both lamenting in their own designed fashion. You can hear the anxiety and loneliness bending through your speakers, but hopefully that experience serves as a catharsis for so many of us, carrying the weight together as we say goodbye to the “worst year on record.” Look for this song to open up the debut LP, out on February 12th via Styles Upon Styles.
You might be familiar with Allison Lorenzen‘s work as a member of School Dance, but our focus here is on her incredible single under her own name for her solo work. Honestly, I just want this song to play throughout the rest of the day; it perfectly captures the balance between light and dark that makes this brand of pop so perfect. Opening with this almost gothic guitar chord, bringing in this shadow to start us off, you’re set up perfectly, to enter the caverns of Lorenzen’s creation. At first Allison’s voice, while perfectly sharp, still carries an almost heavy tone to it, matching the musical element. But, as that moves along, and we enter the chorus, the vocals evolve into something stronger, almost angelic in nature; it’s absolutely captivating. Just press play and don’t forget to thank me later!