Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Kaleah Lee - "The Same"

Photo by Donnel Garcia

I'm the type of music snob that would typically avoid a musician who became big on TikTok, but something about Kaleah Lee's single "Rotting Fruit" worked for me. With her latest, the Vancouver based artist surpasses her previous single. "Rotting Fruit" was more of a folk leaning pop song, but "The Same" is a folk song with some pop leanings. If anything, "The Same" sounds more like an intimate bedroom recording than a pop song designed for teens to lip sync to. I hesitate to call Lee's latest alt-folk, although I probably would if it was nearly anyone else. Lee just has something intensely compelling that I doubt most music fans are going to be able to resist.

You can listen to "The Same" below. Birdwatcher is due out March 22 and is available for pre-order here. For more on Kaleah Lee, check out the artist on Instagram and Twitter.

A Place to Bury Strangers - "Change Your God"

Photo by Devon Bristol Shaw

A Place to Bury Strangers have been around for over twenty years now, and they keep releasing new and exciting music. The band's latest single, "Change Your God," has all of the noise and explosive qualities of their earlier releases, along with the electronic experimentations the band has been engaging in lately. The bass line gives the song a sound that almost demands you dance to it despite all of the chaos storming around it. The song is a mixture of early industrial, noise rock, and shoegaze, sometimes all at once and others almost individually. "Change Your God" is chaos, but controlled chaos... even if just barely.

Frontman Oliver Ackerman says of the songs on the band's new 7" series:

"When looking back at the recordings that were done around the time of See Through You, there were a bunch of great tracks that just captured life back then and really had something incredible going on. Even though they are a bit raw and a bit personal, I thought it would be a mistake if they didn't come out. I thought it would be best to go back to my roots and put out a series of 7-inches the way A Place To Bury Strangers started. That strange weird format where the tracks each speak for themselves; no album context to muddy the water. These tracks are such a contrast to the way I am feeling now and the current songs we've been working on so slip back into this moment in time.”

You can watch the video for "Change Your God" below. The single will be available Friday as part of Dedstrange's new 7" series, The Sevens. You can pre-order a copy here. For more on A Place to Bury Strangers, check out the band's website. Upcoming tour dates are below the video.

Thu. Feb. 22 - Queens, NY @ TV Eye [The Sevens Release Show]Thu. Mar. 21 - Boise, ID @ Treefort Festival [The Sevens Release Show]Fri. Apr. 5 - Nijmegen, NL @ Doornroosje $Sat. Apr. 6 - Köln, DE @ Club Volta &Sun. Apr. 7 - Karlsruhe, DE @ P8 &Tue. Apr. 9 - Milan, IT @ ARCI Bellezza &Wed. Apr. 10 - Bologna, IT @ Coco Club &Thu. Apr. 11 - Rome, IT @ Monk &Fri. Apr. 12 - Palermo, IT @ Candelai *Sat. Apr. 13 - Messina, IT @ Retronouveau †Mon. Apr. 15 - Zurich CH @ Bogen F &Tue. Apr. 16 - Bern, DH @ ISC Club *Wed. Apr. 17 - Marseille, FR @ La Make &Thu. Apr. 18 - Toulouse, FR @ Le Rex &Fri. Apr. 19 - Barcelona, ES @ Barcelona Psych Fest [The Sevens Release Show]Sat. Apr. 20 - Madrid, ES @ El Sol *&Sun. Apr. 21 - San Sebastián, ES @ Dabadaba &Tue. Apr. 23 - Paris, FR @ Petit Bain ^Wed. Apr. 24 - Lille, FR @ Le Grand Mix ^Thu. Apr. 25 - Maastricht, NL @ Muziekgieterij ^Fri. May 31 - Brooklyn, NY @ TBA [The Sevens Release Show] * With Ceremony East Coast& With Maquina (PT)^ With Plattenbau (DE)† With Patriarchy (US)$ With ERRORR (DE)

Tree - "Cheats at Golf"

If you were involved in the Boston music scene in the 90's, you know Tree. Even if you weren't, you still know Tree. The Boston hardcore legends were everywhere back then, with stickers attached to literally every single surface within a ninety minute radius of Boston. The past year or so has seen a reemergence of the band that has seen them play at virtually every single venue in the New England area with a consistency of hungry young bands half their age. Now, they're back with their first new music in twenty five years. "Cheats at Golf" sees Tree wearing their politics on their sleeve with an anti-Trump song. It's hard and fast and everything we want from Tree. 

Singer Dave Tree says of the band's new song:

“'Cheats at Golf' combines hardcore punk, politics, journalism, and sportsmanship into one song. Golf is a gentleman’s sport played with your friends. So if you are willing to cheat at golf on your friends, what else are you willing to cheat on?”

You can watch the video for "Cheats at Golf" below. Through the Darkness is due out in 2024. For more on Tree, check out the band on Facebook.

Josefina - "Roses"

Photo via Facebook

It's been four years since we last heard from Josefina. The Buenos Aires born, Chicago based singer-songwriter is back with "Roses." This new song is a little less folk or country than her previous single, "Gone." "Roses" still has the backbone of country, but the song is a bit more alt-pop than Josefina has previously been. It's the kind of change in sound that certainly isn't going to push any fans away, since the new song is simply great, and much more organic than you might typically associate with pop. Josefina just oozes so much natural charm and talent that she could pull off any genre of music and make you adore it.

You can listen to "Roses" below. The song is currently available via Bandcamp. For more on Josefina, check out the artist on Facebook.

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Hot Joy - "Fingers On My Side"

Photo by Chris Bauer

When I first heard "Fingers On My Side" by Hot Joy, my first thought was that it reminded me of The Breeders' "Divine Hammer." At times it definitely does, especially with the line "I'm just looking for," but the St. Louis band's new single is much more than that. It's a joyful single that seems to plod along wherever it wants, like it's a warm but not too hot summer day and you don't have any concrete plans or responsibilities. Hot Joy are a fun indie rock band, which is something that can sadly be hard to find. "Fingers On My Side" also seems to have a little bit of a modern folk influence if you listen to it closely enough.

Austin McCutchen (guitar/vocals) says of the band's new song:

“It’s a sweet and simple song, about the surprise of finding out how authentic some of the smallest moments in life are, and a reminder that sometimes it’s a string of those smaller moments that make life seem so big."

You can watch the video for "Fingers On My Side" below. Small Favor is due out April 19. For more on Hot Joy, check out the band on Bandcamp and Instagram.

Rick Berlin: The Movie - "Always In Love"

Even if you weren't around the Boston music scene in the 1980's, you know Rick Berlin. The man is just a Boston music legend, even to those who have never heard his music before. Rick Berlin: The Movie was his fourth musical project with Steven Paul Perry from 1985 to 1989. Lunch Records is set to release a retrospective of the band, and just released a previously unreleased single. "Always In Love" is gloriously 80's. It's a little over the top and a teeny bit campy, but in the best way. It's a theatrical song just begging to be included in a movie from that time. Rick Berlin: The Movie just has one of the biggest sounds of the era, and I can't even imagine what their live show could have been like.

You can listen to "Always In Love" below. Celluloid Heroes: 1985-1989 is due out April 19 on Lunch Records. For more on Rick Berlin: The Movie, check out the artist's website.

Kim Gordon - "I'm a Man"

Photo by Danielle Neu

Out of all of her former bandmembers, Kim Gordon's post-Sonic Youth career has been the most interesting. Her latest single, "I'm a Man," continues her exploration into experimental electronic music. This new song sounds both nothing like her previous band and the most like her previous band. Gordon sounds like she's releasing a stream of consciousness spoken word essay over disjointed beats. It's almost like she's pushing the Ciccone Youth project even further, as if that had continued longer, "I'm a Man" is what it could have sounded like.

You can watch the video for "I'm a Man" below. The Collective is out March 8 on Matador Records, and is available for pre-order here. For more on Kim Gordon, check out the artist's website. Upcoming tour dates are below the video.

March 21: Burlington, VT (Higher Ground)

March 22: Washington, D.C. (Black Cat)

March 23: Queens, N.Y. (Knockdown Center)

March 27: Los Angeles, CA (The Regent Theater)

March 29: Ventura, CA (Music Hall)

March 30: San Francisco, CA (Fillmore)

Wonder Women of Country - "Another Broken Heart"

Photo by Lyza Renee

Last year I was lucky enough to see the trio of Kelly Willis, Brennen Leigh, and Melissa Carper perform at the Charles River Museum of Industry & Innovation in Waltham. Apparently the three of them enjoyed their tour since they're back as the Wonder Women of Country and have an upcoming EP. The first single is "Another Broken Heart" was brought to the band by Kelly Willis, and it's just the perfect kind of traditional meets modern country song that Willis is known for. Seeing Willis, Leigh, and Carper play together was an absolute delight, and the joy that radiated from them was palpable. "Another Broken Heart" captures that feeling on a recording. We're always thrilled to have new music from any of these three, so having new music from all three together is especially thrilling.

Kelly Willis says of the trio's new song:

“This is a song I heard Monte Warden and Bruce Robison start writing in the other room. I was so smitten with the verse I heard, that I could not help getting all up in this song’s business. I wrote a bridge and chorus for it and the guys did not seem to mind that I crashed their party. It's a classic crying in your beer heartbreak song with a kind of 70’s style country/pop feel. Misery loves/needs company.”

You can listen to "Another Broken Heart" below. Wonder Women of Country: Willis, Carper, Leigh is due out March 15, and is available for pre-order here. For more on Wonder Women of Country, check out the artist's website. Upcoming tour dates are below the song.

3/15 - SXSW - AMG Showcase - Austin, TX
3/16 - SXSW - SOCO Stomp - Austin, TX
4/17 - Natalie’s Grandview - Columbus, OH
4/18 - The Southgate House - Newport, KY
4/19 - Duke’s Indy - Indianapolis, IN
4/20 - The Golden Record - St. Louis, MO
4/21 - Bartlett Arboretum - Belle Plaine, KS
4/27 & 4/28 - Red Dragon Listening Room - Baton Rouge, LA
5/10 - Cultural Activities Center - Temple, TX
5/11 - Medical City Lewisville Grand Theater - Lewisville, TX
6/22 - Green River Festival - Greenfield, MA

Monday, February 19, 2024

Carissa Johnson - "I Surrender"

Photo by Lucy Opazo

Carissa Johnson is one of those rare artists that has an ability to move through genres while still sounding like themselves. The singer-songwriter's latest single, "I Surrender," still has the garage rock meets power pop sound we've always loved from Johnson, but this one has a little more of a pop sheen than we're used to. There's something about "I Surrender" that feels very 80's. It's a little New Wave, but still a rock song, sort of like Tom Petty's dalliances into the genre. But I could definitely see "I Surrender" being played at a climactic moment of your favorite forgotten teen movie.

You can listen to "I Surrender" below. For more on Carissa Johnson, check out the artist's website.

Miracle Blood - "Lobotomizer"

Photo by Kristi Xhelili

Miracle Blood are the secret weapon of the Boston music scene. They're one of those bands that once they click for you, you're instantly obsessed. Their latest single, "Lobotomizer," will show you exactly why. It lives in that bizarre world between metal and punk without really choosing either one over the other. It's kind of like if you mashed up Lard and Mr. Bungle into one band. "Lobotomizer" isn't going to be for everyone, but most of the best music these days isn't. But if Miracle Blood works for you, consider yourself one of the lucky ones. Vocalist/guitarist Andrew Wong continues to have one of the best screams in the city, regardless of genre.

Andrew Wong says of the new single:

“‘Lobotomizer’ is about the horror of losing control of your own life to societal pressures. It’s so easy to fall into making so many life decisions because it seems like ‘what you’re supposed to do.’ Life can become extremely prescribed if you don’t take the time to question what you really want out of it. It’s like having your brain controlled by someone else; those little voices in your head that say, ‘You really should be doing this or that by whatever age.’ You can easily wake up one day and realize the life you’re living is someone else’s version of what is ideal. It happens a lot. It’s mundane but still scary. I think the older we get, the more we feel these types of pressures."

You can watch the video for "Lobotomizer" below. The single is out now via Nefarious Industries. For more on Miracle Blood, check out the band's website. Upcoming tour dates are below the video.

3/09/2024 33 Golden Street – New London, CT w/ Dirt Pile, WAAH, Throw, Brown Apples

3/15/2024 Deep Cuts – Medford, MA w/ The Freqs, Psychic Weight, BILLY

4/06/2024 The Cellar on Treadwell – Hamden, CT w/ Perennial, Down With Rent, Wow Okay Cool

4/19/2024 Flying Squirrel – Rochester, NY w/ Ivory Daze, Bug Day, Deep Disdain

4/20/2024 Silver Street Event Center – Syracuse, NY w/ Easy Blame, Apocalypse Tribe, Camouflage, Ebony Sorrow

5/04/2024 Bushwick Public House – Brooklyn, NY