Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Owen FitzGerald - "Don't Give Me a Pet"

Durham's outsider poet/country singer Owen FitzGerald is back with a new single. "Don't Give Me a Pet" starts off as a relatively straightforward modern country song, despite the noise loop at the beginning. It's a little bit off from mainstream, but that's hardly a bad thing. And then the bizarro rock burst kicks in that just leads the song into strange territory. It ushers in an indie rock fuzz that never quite leaves the song even as it tries to head back into a more traditional sound. Instead, the song wildly veers around with changing tempos and styles with little to no warning. In other words, it's exactly what we love around here.

In a press release, Owen FitzGerald says of the new song:

"My family attended the 10am Mass at St. Raphael's every Sunday while I was a child. 'Our' seats were on the left, and towards the front, if you were looking at the altar. I always held the aisle. After taking communion, a Catholic is supposed to kneel in prayerful contemplation until everyone has had their turn. Each week, dozens of congregants filed past me to and from the Eucharist. I kneeled and clasped my hands. I bowed my head low so no one would notice my open eyes. I stared at their shoes and pretended to pray. At a rate of about one second per pair, I logged style, brand, color, material, and condition and rendered judgement. My entire brain focused on sorting the shoes into 'cool' and 'not cool' while I tried to keep my posture devout. Honest to God, I've never told anyone about this game of mine until now.

"Tiny details can sweep me off my feet and take me to other planets, if I let them. As I got older, my tendency to be mentally elsewhere strained my relationships. I didn't like disappointing people that cared about me, but the thought of not being swept away felt claustrophobic and dismal. I wrote 'Don't Give Me A Pet' in 2013 when I felt unbalanced, chaotic, and liable to end up on another planet in the blink of an eye.”

You can listen to "Don't Give Me a Pet" below. A deep clean you can count on! is due out February 4 on Sleepy Cat Records. For more on Owen FitzGerald, check out the artist on Bandcamp.

Suz Slezak - "Beautiful Mess"

Photo by Tristan Williams

You definitely know Suz Slezak from her fifteen years as a member of David Wax Museum, but she's starting to step on on her own with her debut solo single (Not counting her 2015 album of lullabies, Watching the Nighttime Come)! "Beautiful Mess" presents a lot for David Wax Museum fans to love without sounding anything like her other musical project. It's much more pop than we're used to, and more singer/songwriter than traditional folk. That's not to say "Beautiful Mess" is a pop song. There is far too much rock guitar in her along with some indie rock distortion to be a pop song. This is a great showcase for Slezak's songwriting abilities along with a way for her to experiment in other directions than she normally can within David Wax Museum.

You can listen to "Beautiful Mess" below. Our Wings May Be Featherless due out March 4 on Nine Mile Records, and can be pre-ordered here. For more on Suz Slezak, check out the artist's Facebook.

Sonic Youth - "In & Out"

I'm a Sonic Youth die hard, so I can be pretty much guaranteed to bring you any new music from the post punk/noise rock legends. "In & Out" isn't technically new Sonic Youth, since there most likely won't ever be new Sonic Youth again, but it's new to us. It's going to be included on In/Out/In, which is an upcoming album of rarities recorded between 2000 and 2010. The new-ish song isn't going to be what you'll use to convince your friend that this is the best band of all time, but for fans it's a treasure. The seven and a half minute track isn't quite like the open jam sessions you'd find on SYR releases, but it seems half way between that and a proper album from that time. It's a Kim Gordon song that kind of meanders around noisily without being loud. It was recorded in 2010 and fits right in with her songs around the time of The Eternal.

You can listen to "In & Out" below. In/Out/In is due out on March 11 via Three Lobed Recordings, and can be pre-ordered on the label's Bandcamp. Additional merch bundles are available here. For more on Sonic Youth, check out the artist's website.

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

First Listen: New Releases for 14 January 2022

Artist: Jamestown Revival
Album: Young Man
Quick Thoughts: I didn't know Jamestown Revival before this week, and my goodness am I glad I tripped up on this. This is Americana that grabs you right from the start and keeps you entranced from start to finish. This definitely jumps around a bit while keeping its rootsy base, but the end result is a collection of sticky songs that I'm looking forward to going back to.
Songs of Note: "Coyote," "Young Man," "Slow It Down"

Artist: Punch Brothers
Album: Hell on Church Street
Quick Thoughts: A tribute album of sorts to Tony Rice's Church Street Blues, this is your typical excellent effort from Chris Thile and Punch Brothers. The musicality is off the charts, you know more of these songs you think you do, and it's just a well-crafted effort from top to bottom. Their take on "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald" in particular is worth hearing.
Songs of Note: "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald," "Cattle in the Cane," "Any Old Time"

Artist: Grace Cummings
Album: Storm Queen
Quick Thoughts: I liked Grace Cummings's debut effort from 2019, but something about Storm Queen resonates hard for me. The songwriting in particular is sharp and up-front, and her delivery growls and simmers in ways I'm not generally used to when it comes to folk-adjacent singer-songwriters. Add in some interesting instrumentation (especially the woodwinds in the title track) and you get one of my favorites this week.
Songs of Note: "Storm Queen," "Up in Flames," "Freak"

Artist: Blood Red Shoes
Album: Ghosts on Tape
Quick Thoughts: I've been a fan of Blood Red Shoes for a bit, and this new album is the sort of heavy pop-tinged synth rock I've come to love from them. Six albums in, they have this art down to a science, and this albun has so many great moments you should just check it out and jump on the bandwagon if you haven't already.
Songs of Note: "Morbid Fascination," "Give Up"

Artist: Cat Power
Album: Covers
Quick Thoughts: Every so often, Chan Marshall blesses us with a new Cat Power covers record, and this one is as good as the rest. While it was pleasant to actually recognize the Nick Cave cover this time, the effort includes acts ranging from Frank Ocean to that Ryan Gosling indie rock effort from a decade or so back. Worth it as always.
Songs of Note: "Pa Pa Power," "I Had a Dream Joe"

Artist: FKA Twigs
Album: Caprisongs
Quick Thoughts: I was down with FKA twigs because she was sort of like an R&B Bjork in a lot of regards. Caprisongs is not that at all, and is probably the most straightforward effort from her yet. Doesn't make it a bad thing - far from it, it's arguably the most interesting R&B record I've heard in a while. But if you came on board thanks to her weirdness, that's missing here. Worth a listen either way.
Songs of Note: "tears in the club," "oh my love," "which way," "careless"

Artist: Steph Green
Album: Thanks for That
Quick Thoughts: I'm not sure whether to categorize this as an album or an EP, but I do know I can categorize it as a winner. Green provides a nice mix of genres and approaches in this lo-fi-ish debut, and does so in an effortless and interesting way. With a sub-20 minute runtime, it deserves your time if only for that, but I suspect you'll love what you hear.
Songs of Note: "Next Place," "Night Falls," "Thanks For That"

Of note:

* The Cheap Cassettes - Ever Since Ever Since (High quality local power pop.)
* Snowgoons - Reniassance Kings (Don't sleep on this rap effort.)
* Bonobo - Fragments
* Elvis Costello and The Imposters - The Boy Named If
* Destroyyyyer - The Journey of Recovery
* The Wombats - Fix Yourself, Not the World
* Drew Holcomb and Ellie Holcomb - Coming Home: A Collection of Songs
* The Neverists - Scream Like a Whisper
* Fuss - We're Not Alone
* Fickle Friends - Are We Gonna Be Alright?
* Chastity - Suffer Summer
* Gupi - you're it


* Martha Skye Murphy and Maxwell Sterling - Distance on Ground
* Sneaker Pimps - Rework Collection 3
* Lilblackkids - Planet of the Blues: Part One

Live albums/Compilations/Reissues:

* Broken Social Scene - Old Dead Young (B-Sides and Rarities)
* Anna Von Hausswolff - Live at Montreaux Jazz Festival

Also out:

* The Lumineers - Brightside

Erin Rae - "Cosmic Sigh"

Photo by Bree Marie Fish

"Cosmic country" seems like it's going to be the genre we bring you repeatedly in 2022, and we aren't going to be complaining. Our latest cosmic country discovery is the newest single from Erin Rae. "Cosmic Sigh" is a lush and gorgeous song that is equal parts country, psychedelia, and 70's style soft rock. It starts off as a quiet singer/songwriter track, sounding personal and contemplative. It slowly builds into a giant crescendo of strings that stops just shy of over the top. This is what mainstream 70's crossover country could have sounded like if they had all just been a little bit cooler.

In a press release, Erin Rae says of the new song:

“For me, ‘Cosmic Sigh’ is telling the story of the turning point in healing, in which you start to see the light at the end of the tunnel, or hope that a new way of living is starting to feel more comfortable; that life is expanding. Something I have learned many times now is that when things start to change, even for the better, it can be intimidating and uncomfortable. The familiar ways of operating, though harmful or painful, can try and draw you back in for a few rounds. Two steps forward, one step back. 'Cosmic Sigh' is about the fortitude within; the commitment to have faith in the unknown, and stay the course the intuition is hinting at, and eventually, hopefully, trusting oneself.”

You can watch the video for "Cosmic Sigh" below. Lighten Up is due out February 4 on Thirty Tigers/Good Memory and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Erin Rae, check out the artist's website.

Partner - "Time is a Car"

We're unabashedly fans of "Canadian lesbian post classic rock" band Partner. One thing we love the most is that despite only forming in 2014 the duo have already cycled through multiple sounds. When we first discovered them they were doing the huge loud grunge thing, which then morphed into more of a prog rock sound. On their newest single, they've evolved again. "Time is a Car" is much more melodic than anything we've heard before from Partner. This is still a rock song, but it's more Heart than Pearl Jam or Rush. If anything, it melds Heart's 70's rock output with their more pop focused 80's songs. But... it still sounds like Partner, so we can't possibly not love it.

Partner says of their new song:

"This is a song that we wrote while reflecting on the years that have passed and the way that the passing of time offers fresh perspectives. Fittingly enough it’s ready just in time for us to present it to you on Josée's 30th birthday. Time sure does fly!!"

You can watch the video for "Time is a Car" below. The song is currently available as a single here. For more on Partner, check out the band's website.

Savoir Faire - "Sweet"

I truly hate just lifting a description from an artist's press release, but sometimes they just nail it. According to the press release for Savoir Faire's latest single, Sarah Fard's musical project is "... floating somewhere between jazz and art rock." "Sweet" perfectly reflects that description. Fard's vocals definitely bring the jazz sound, but in the way that Fiona Apple sings jazz. Musically the song definitely has jazz roots, but it meanders throughout a musical spectrum that kind of reminds me of Tori Amos with less piano and a killer guitar solo. "Sweet" is a unique song that deftly delves into art rock while still being accessible to a fairly mainstream audience. 

In the same press release, Sarah Fard says of the new song:

“'Sweet' is a rejection of the term so often thrown upon myself and other women. Throughout my career, I've been consistently told that I am 'sweet'. Though well intended, the term carries with it undertones of 'weak,' 'gentle,' or dare I say 'complacent'. 'Sweet' asserts that, though I may have a sweet exterior projected onto me, I am not as soft as I appear."

You can listen to "Sweet" below. The song is available now as a single via Bandcamp. For more on Savoir Faire, check out the artist's website.

Monday, January 17, 2022

Mint Green - "Body Language"

Photo via Facebook

It's been a while since we've brought you an original song from Mint Green. The Boston band has been releasing a bunch of covers lately, and no complaints from us but it's great to have a new original song from them. "Body Language" puts the pop in pop punk. It may have the crashing drums and guitars you would normally associate with pop punk, but the vocals, especially the harmonizing, is pure pop. I may tend to be the anti-pop guy here at If It's Too Loud..., but "Body Language" is nearly impossible not to love. It's all the angst and edge associated with punk but the beauty you get in a pop song. Seriously, punk is not known for beauty, but Mint Green's vocals, especially when harmonizing, and mesmerizing. 

You can watch the video for "Body Language" below. The song is available as a single via Pure Noise Records, and can be found here. For more on Mint Green, check out the band's website.

Emma Lee M.C. - "Campfire"

We first discovered Emma Lee M.C. almost two years ago with the release of "Hugo Pinnell (Mosh)." Hearing that song was wildly exciting, as it was one of the most exciting hip hop songs I had heard in a while. Now with the release of "Campfire," we know the Uganda born Harlem raised M.C. is one of the rappers we need to start getting thrilled about. "Campfire" has the noise of classic Public Enemy. With that noise comes a sense of urgency that I've been personally missing in hip hop. There's a high pitched whine that sounds like an alarm going off throughout the song, and with a beat that resembles marching, the Public Enemy comparisons are fitting. But this isn't a throwback to 1988 at all. Emma Lee M.C. also sings in the song and adds in a little but of R&B. Normally that's something I can't personally get into, but Emma Lee M.C. makes it work even for us middle aged hip hop fans.

You can listen to "Campfire" below. Boom Bap Metropolis is due out later this year. For more on Emma Lee M.C., check out the artist's Facebook and Twitter.

Sad Daddy - "Arkansas Bound"

Photo by Melissa Brawner

Sad Daddy are the kind of country band that can record in a cabin in Arkansas and sound like they did without it being cutesy at all. Their latest single is the Melissa Carper written and sung "Arkansas Bound." This song is just pure down home country and folk. It's the kind of song that could very easily have been a throwback or referred to as old timey, but Sad Daddy make it sound modern despite the fact that it is timeless. Although it could have been recorded any time over the last seventy or so years, something about "Arkansas Bound" feels modern.

Melissa Carper says of the new song:

“‘Arkansas Bound’ was inspired by living in the big city and longing to go back to a slower pace of life in the country, surrounded by nature. I was making a lot of trips from Austin, Texas, back to Arkansas at the time and once I would hit those winding country roads in the Ozark Mountains, a sense of relief would come over me. I’ve been drawn to cities to find the inspiration of various music communities but I really have never loved living in a city. I have spent a good deal of time in and around Eureka Springs, Arkansas, which is a tiny town in Northwest Arkansas, in the Ozarks. There is something about the country there that keeps drawing me back in.”

You can listen to "Arkansas Bound" below. Way Up in the Hills is due out January 28 and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Sad Daddy, check out the band's website.

Friday, January 14, 2022

Schedule 1 - "Show Your Children"

Schedule 1 are a "melodic punk band from Vancouver, BC." There must be something in the water up there, because even a melodic punk band comes out sounding pretty damn dark. Their latest single, "Show Your Children," has plenty of jangle to the guitars and much more actual singing than you would expect with punk. But Schedule 1 sound like a very early version of The Cure decided to go a little more punk than New Wave and come out the other end sounding much more post punk. If that description appeals to you, you're going to love this. It has all of the energy of punk, but with a lot more fuzz than you normally get and with the edges softened just slightly. 

You can listen to "Show Your Children" below. Schedule 1's self-titled 12" is due out January 28 on Dirt Cult Records, and can be pre-ordered here. For more on Schedule 1, check out the band's Facebook and Bandcamp.

Friday Freebie: The Dirty Truckers - Three Shots EP

According to the description on their latest EP's Bandcamp page, The Dirty Truckers provide "... a sonic wall of '70s FM thunder welded by earnest blue collar rock n' roll." The Boston band's newest release, Three Shots EP, is three songs (naturally) that combine rock in country in a way you haven't quite heard before. It's a unique mix of alt-country and power pop, with all of the edge and punk attitude of alt-country but with huge melodic guitars and some of the catchiest hooks around. It's like bands like The Replacements and Drive-By Truckers decided to smooth out their sound a bit. It's distinctly a country rock EP, but more like Gram Parsons by way of Steve Earle.

You can listen to "Turn Your Head Around" below. Three Shots EP is out now on Rum Bar Records and available for the "name your price" option over at Bandcamp. If you do choose free, be sure to give The Dirty Truckers a follow over on Facebook.

Guerilla Toss - "Cannibal Capital"

Photo by Ebru Yildiz

Guerilla Toss have always been one of the more interesting bands we've covered. Back when I first discovered them opening for Mission of Burma in 2015 they were more of a guitar noise band, and since they've evolved to more of an electronic noise band. The band introduced multiple songs as "party songs" back at that live show, which seems to be the thread that unites their entire catalog. 

The latest from Guerilla Toss seems to unite both sides of the band. "Cannibal Capital" opens more as a guitar driven noise rock song, but quickly changes to one of the most oddball dance jams you've ever heard. It keeps some of the more guitar rock elements throughout, but this is distinctly a dance song, albeit not like anything you think of when you think of dance music. For a band that has always been playing "party songs," this is the most party we've ever seen them. 

You can watch the video for "Cannibal Capital" below. Famously Alive is due out March 25 on Sub Pop Records, and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Guerilla Toss, check out the band's website.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

Tomato Flower - "World to Come"

Photo by Tomato Flower

The latest single from Baltimore's Tomato House starts off fairly normally. It's pretty standard modern mellow indie rock. "World to Come" sort of meanders around itself, taking the listener on a pleasant little journey. And then it changes enough to get a little more weird. Extra instruments seem to come in (or the existing instruments ramp up a bit), and Austyn Wohlers' vocals take on a choir-like sound. The change isn't exactly subtle, but it changes without altering the vibe of the song at all. "World to Come" is on of the more endearing indie rock songs of 2022 so far. If you like your indie to have more harmony than noise, Tomato Flower can't be missed.

You can listen to "World to Come" below. Gold Arc is due out February 11 on Ramp Local and can be pre-ordered here. For more on Tomato Flower, check out the band's Facebook and Instagram.

Raw Poetic - "Sunny Water"

Photo by Earl Davis

We were big fans of Raw Poetic's 2020 collaborative album with his uncle Archie Shepp and Damu the Fudgemunk. This year he's releasing his sixth solo album and we can now check out the first single. "Sunny Water" is more straight up hip hop than the jazz/hip hop hybrid album Ocean Bridges, but it's definitely not your average hip hop song. It has that free feeling of jazz without sounding like jazz. Musically, it doesn't really sound like hip hop, either. The beats are more restrained than I've ever heard in a rap song before. It's jazzy without sounding like jazz and hip hop without being an obvious rap song. Raw Poetic is pushing boundaries on this one, and we can't wait to hear more.

Raw Poetic (aka Jason Moore) also has a hard time describing his upcoming album in a press release:

“I still can’t fully describe what kind of album this is so I’ve now reserved myself to telling people it’s a ‘Jason’ album. I wanted to tell people what the hell is going on through my head sometimes; how I feel as a guy from Northern Virginia. Sometimes it’s invisible, other times invincible. Sometimes loved, sometimes hurt. Once we got started mixing and matching ideas, well… it became something that I am very proud of.

You can watch the video for "Sunny Water" below. Laminated Skies is due out March 18 on Def Presse, and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Raw Poetic, check out the artist's website.

Shane Parish - "Black Eyed Susan"

Photo by Courtney Chappell

The upcoming album from Shane Parish is one of the more interesting releases we've come across. Liverpool is a collection of traditional sea shanties re-imagined with electric guitar and drums. The collection of songs was originally arranged for an acoustic guitar but were then recorded with electric guitars. Far from being a TikTok trend, a song like "Black Eyed Susan" sounds like no sea shanty you've ever heard before. It's an experimental instrumental showcase for Parish's musicianship. While most experimental guitar based music tends to focus more on noise, Parish takes the familiar and completely reworks it in a dark and hypnotic way. There aren't many artists out there that could release a six and a half minute instrumental sea shanty and make it one of the most compelling listens of the year, but Parish has gifted us all with that.

You can watch the video for "Black Eyed Susan" below. Liverpool is due out March 4 on Dear Life Records and can be pre-ordered via Bandcamp. For more on Shane Parish, check out the artist's website.

Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Fantastic Negrito - "When Everything Went Wrong"

Photo by David Domínguez

We're about two months late on this one so I almost skipped it, but this song is too great to not bring you, even very late. Fantastic Negrito recorded a song for a fight scene in the Netflix animated series Arcane. It may seem like an odd choice, but considering that "When Everything Went Wrong" is scored to the scene, it fits perfectly with what we'd expect from Fantastic Negrito. He's always had a very unique take on blues, almost like blues with just the slightest hints of indie rock. It's a truly fun song with a modern take on a classic American sound. Fantastic Negrito has always been an artist making music his very own way, and even when he's scoring an animated fight scene it's still distinctly his.

You can listen to "When Everything Went Wrong" below. For more on Fantastic Negrito, check out the artist's website.

Shanda & The Howlers - "Miles and Miles"

Shanda & The Howlers are a band out of time. The Las Vegas based band sound like they should have been around back in the 50's and 60's. They have a blend of R&B, blues, garage, and soul that doesn't sound like a throwback or even an homage. A song like "Miles and Miles" sounds like the real deal. It's the kind of song that sounds like it could be from an old Nuggets compilation, if it wasn't for the modern day production. (Although "Miles and Miles" does have the layer of grit and fuzz that classic garage tracks all have.) Shanda & The Howlers are perfect for those of us that spent a good chunk of their childhoods listening to their parents records from their youth along with the local oldies station.

You can listen to "Miles and Miles" below. It Ain't Easy is due out January 28 on Rum Bar Records and can be pre-ordered over at Bandcamp. For more on Shanda & The Howlers, check out the band's website.

Artsick - "Look Again"

If you haven't fully joined us on the Artsick bandwagon, the band's latest single is going to make you want to jump aboard. "Look Again" feels like so much of the music I listened to in the mid 90's. It would have been from the post grunge time period when there were tons of power pop bands but everyone refused to use any description that included the word pop. The song would be made to sound a little quirky or punk to rebel against that pop sound, but it was there, even if it took us over twenty years to admit it. That's the kind of song "Look Again" is. It's reminding me of vintage Juliana Hatfield Three or The Muffs, and that is never a bad thing. This is a great mixture of classic mid 90's indie rock crossed with modern indie pop.

You can watch the video for "Look Again" below. Fingers Crossed is due out on January 21 on Slumberland Records, and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Artsick, check out the band on Twitter and Instagram.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Bill Janovitz - "SKUNK"

Back in the pre-digital days consumers would be screwed regularly by B-sides and rarities. I spent a lot of money on import CD singles just to get that one rarity song that wasn't on the album. And, of course, eventually it would just be released on a rarities compilation. But... I still had to have it first. 

That's one thing I love about the modern music industry. A B-side or rarity can just be uploaded on the internet, quite often by the artist themselves. You can even get an artist going way out of their standard musical fare with an experimental song without having to spend $20 to hear it. Over the weekend, Bill Janovitz released "SKUNK" on Bandcamp. We all know Buffalo Tom's 90's alt-rock classics and should be familiar with Janovitz's more singer/songwriter solo work, but "SKUNK" is nothing like anything we've heard from him before. It's a just shy of two minutes funky as hell psychedelic instrumental jam song. You would swear this is from the 70's. Plus, it has a blistering guitar solo that you don't normally get to see Janovitz pull off. Would this song be worth $20 as an import CD single B-side? Maybe not. But a $1 Bandcamp download? Hell yes.

You can listen to "SKUNK" below. The song is available now for download via Bandcamp. For more on Bill Janovitz, check out his website.

Marissa Nadler Covers The Alessi Brothers

Photo by Nick Fancher

Fresh on the heels of 2021's fantastic The Path of the Clouds, Marissa Nadler is set to release a new EP The Wrath of the Clouds. It's made up of three originals that were originally written for the album and two covers. The first single is one of the covers: The Alessi Brothers' "Seabird." The Alessi Brothers are an artist I'm not familiar with at all, but a tiny bit of research tells me that they're a late 70's soft rock duo. Marissa Nadler covering 70's soft rock is intriguing at the very least, especially since she's a master of dark and moody ethereal indie rock. Nadler's version of "Seabird" is a blast. It's far more pop than anything I've ever heard her release previously, but keeps that Marissa Nadler vibe enough that her long standing fans are still going to love it. After a release as dark as The Path of the Clouds, it's nice to see Nadler let loose and have fun on a song.

You can listen to Marissa Nadler's version of "Seabird" below. The Wrath of the Clouds is due out February 2 on Sacred Bones, and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Marissa Nadler, check out the artist's website.

Jamie McDell featuring Tom Busby - "Poor Boy"

Photo by Jake Smith

Jamie McDell was born in New Zealand and as a child lived on a yacht in the Mediterranean. She signed her first record contract at sixteen. She started recording in Nashville in 2017, and relocated to Toronto from New Zealand to be closer to Nashville in 2019. Now twenty-eight, she's been kicking around as a professional musician for over a decade. Once you hear her latest single, you'll understand why she left New Zealand to be closer to Nashvile. "Poor Boy" is a laid back Americana song. It's a little more folky than country, but there is just enough of a slight twang in McDell's vocals to be a little bit country. "Poor Boy" has that more mainstream folk/pop sound, but when it's done this well mainstream isn't necessarily a bad thing. McDell has the voice and talent to go huge, and you're going to want to start paying attention to her sooner than later.

You can listen to "Poor Boy" below. Jamie McDell's upcoming self-titled album is due out February 22 via ABC Music and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Jamie McDell, check out the artist's website.

First Listen: New and Missed Music Through 6 January

We're back in the thick of new release territory next week, so our last catch up of 2021 (along with a handful of 2022 efforts):


* David Wax Museum - Remember My Future (Pandemic effort from our favorites.)
* The Weeknd - Dawn FM (A fairly solid concept record.)
* Jah Wobble - Metal Box - Rebuilt in Dub (Public Image Ltd's bassist does an electronic take of sorts.)
* David Bowie - Toy:Box (Previously unreleased Bowie!)
* JOMORO - Blue Marble Sky
* Macie Stewart - Mouth Full of Glass

Of note:

* Ishmael Ensemble - Visions of Light
* Steven Bernstein's Millennial Territory - Tinctures in Time (Community Music, Vol. 1)/Good Time Music (Community Music, Vol. 2)
* Riki - Gold
* Frankmusik - Carissimi
* Geese - Projector


* Bad Sounds - Escaping from a Violent Time, Vol. 2
* August, Yours Truly - Revelations EP
* Penelope Scott - Hazards
* Ellen Allien - Yellow Label
* Holly Miranda - Un Bosque
* 1010 Benja SL - Three Times

Live albums/Compilations/Reissues:

* Tysk Tysk Task - Live at the Tip
* MARINA - Ancient Dreams in a Modern Land (Deluxe Edition)

Also out:

* Endless Boogie - Admonitions

Monday, January 10, 2022

Yard Act - "Rich"

Photo by Phoebe Fox

The more I hear Yard Act the more I enjoy them. The Leeds, UK band re-imagine Parklife-era Blur as a post punk band instead of Brit pop. So far their vocals have been much more along the lines of spoken word or ranting than actual singing. Their latest single, "Rich," has this blistering building intensity that goes in stark contrast to the cheerfulness at the beginning of the song. Very slowly the song gets angrier and drips with more and more attitude the further you get into the song. "Rich" starts off as an almost accessible song and then devolves into a much noisier and discordant one towards the end. A+.

Frontman James Smith says of the new song:

‘Rich’ is the natural successor to ‘Payday’. That’s the end of the story right? Success! Status! Security! Except, there’s always more money to be made, and you’re deemed a failure if your life starts to head back in the direction it came from. It’s about being so lost you’re sure you know exactly where you are and how you got there. I also wrote it because I thought it would be quite funny if Yard Act made a shit ton of money after I’d written an anti-capitalist concept album. It’ll be funny if I’m singing this song on stage when I’ve made my mint.

"At worst it makes no sense, at best it comes off as pretentious, but that’s the point I'm trying to make when I write anything really. Things only really make sense if you exclude the bits that don’t back up the point you’re trying to make. I’m a hypocrite just like everyone else. I don’t have the answers and I’m just trying to do the best I can. It’ll never be good enough though. Enjoy the ride, life is short and you never know what’s round the corner.

You can watch the video for "Rich" below. The Overload is due out on January 21 via Island Records/Zen F.C., and can be pre-ordered/pre-saved here. For more on Yard Act, check out the band's Facebook and Twitter. Upcoming tour dates are below the video.

21  Jan | Rough Trade East, London, UK 12pm21  Jan | Rough Trade East, London, UK 6p– SOLD OUT22 Jan | Sister Ray / 100 Club Outstore 1pm22 Jan | Pryzm, Kingston-Upon-Thames, UK 9pm23 Jan | Pie and Vinyl Instore, Southsea, UK 1pm23 Jan | Resident Music Instore, Brighton, UK 6pm – SOLD OUT24 Jan | Truck Music Store, Oxford, UK  1pm23 Jan | Rough Trade, Bristol, UK, 6:30PM – SOLD OUT 27 Jan | Rough Trade, Nottingham, UK – SOLD OUT 2 Feb | L’Aéronef, Lille, FR3 Feb | Trix, Borgorhaut, BE4 Feb | Paradiso Kleine Zaal, Amsterdam, NL – SOLD OUT5 Feb | Molotow, Hamburg, DE6 Feb | Stengade, Copenhagen, DK7 Feb | Plan B, Malmö, SE9 Feb | Badehaus, Berlin, DE10 Feb | Blue Shell, Cologne, DE11 Feb | Rotondes, Luxembourg, LU12 Feb | La Boule Noire, Paris, FR17 Feb | Village Underground, London, UK – SOLD OUT18 Feb | Patterns, Brighton, UK – SOLD OUT19 Feb | The Joiners, Southampton, UK – SOLD OUT21 Feb | Exchange, Bristol, UK – SOLD OUT22 Feb | Clwb Ifor Bach, UK Cardiff – SOLD OUT23 Feb | Bodega Social, Nottingham, UK – SOLD OUT24 Feb | The White Hotel, Salford, UK – SOLD OUT25 Feb | The Trades Club, Hebden Bridge, UK – SOLD OUT26 Feb | Brudenell Social Club, Leeds, UK – SOLD OUT1 Mar | The Cluny, Newcastle, UK – SOLD OUT2 Mar | The Caves, Edinburgh – SOLD OUT3 Mar | Mono, Glasgow, UK – SOLD OUT4 Mar | Whelans, Dublin, IE14 Mar – 20 Mar | SXSW, Austin, US22 Mar | Union Pool, Brooklyn, US 23 Mar | Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia, US24 Mar | TV Eye, Queens, US25 Mar | The Sinclair, Boston, US27 Mar | The Garrison, Toronto, CA29 Mar | Sleeping Village, Chicago, US 5 Apr | Earth, London, UK15 Apr | The Casbah, San Diego, US18 Apr | The Crocodile, Seattle, US19 Apr | Doug Fir Lounge, Portland, US 21 Apr | Rickshaw Stop, San Francisco, US 30 Apr | Liverpool Sound City, UK 11 May | Trinity, Bristol, UK18 May | Rescue Rooms, Nottingham – SOLD OUT19 May | Zanzibar, Liverpool – SOLD OUT20 May | Irish Centre, Leeds, UK – SOLD OUT21 May | Band on the Wall, Manchester, UK – SOLD OUT22 May | The Foundry, Sheffield – SOLD OUT26 May | O2 Academy, Leicester, UK27 May | Arts Centre, Norwich – SOLD OUT28 May | Wide Awake Festival, London22 Jul | Truck Festival, Oxford, UK24 Jul | Tramlines, Sheffield, UK29 Jul | Deer Shed, Thirsk UK30 Jul | Ynot Festival, Derbyshire, UK 5-7 Aug | Off Festival, Katowice, PL9-13 Aug | Oya Festival, Oslo, NO 24 Nov | O2 Academy, Leeds 25 Nov | O2 Ritz, Manchester

hemlock - "garbage truck"

hemlock is the musical project of Louisiana raised and Chicago based musician Carolina Chauffe. Their Bandcamp page describes their music as "lofi phone-folk," and I truly can't argue with that. "garbage truck" is probably best described as bedroom folk/pop. It's an absolutely gorgeous song led by Chauffe's dream-like vocals. It starts off as a fairly standard lo-fi folk song, but all these swirls keep coming and going as they see fit, which truly brings a unique and lush element to the song. A lot of artists can be compelling despite being so quiet, but hemlock inspire excitement without a lot of noise. That is much more rare, and truly special. 

You can listen to "garbage truck" below. talk soon is due out March 11, and you can pre-order the album over at Bandcamp. For more on hemlock, check out the artist's website.

Che` Noir featuring Ransom & 38 Spesh - "Table for 3"

Photo via Facebook

Che Noir (aka the Shea butter queen) is back with a new song off of her upcoming album. She's quickly proving to be one of the best up-and-coming MCs in hip hop. Her latest single features Ransom and 38 Spesh, and if there's any justice in the world this song is going to be gigantic. It's the kind of slower paced hip hop song that is reminiscent of late 90's Wu-Tang Clan. It has that majestic scope that RZA fell in love with on Wu-Tang Forever. It's a very cinematic song that harkens back to the best of 90's hip hop. We've said that Che Noir is going to have you diving into the entire Buffalo hip hop scene, and if you haven't before "Table for 3" is going to have you checking everyone you can out.

You can listen to "Table for 3" below. Food for Thought is due out January 21. For more on Che Noir, check out the artist's website.