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Indie Roundup | Nine New Tracks For Thursday

Hot Chip, Shana Cleveland, Holy Knives and more conjure up some magic.

Hot Chip get into your head, Shana Cleveland trips, Holy Knives cut deep, J.R. shoots and more in today’s Roundup. Can everybody see all the way to the back? Good! Then let’s begin:

1 Certain songs become the soundtrack to our lives — whether we like it or not. It’s safe to say Martin Starr and Kilana Vayntrub, the battling couple at the centre of Hot Chip’s surreal and cinematic video for the single Hungry Child, are in the not category. Sadly, it takes more than that to stop the relentless groove of this infectious house number from their June 21 album A Bath Full of Ecstasy. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “For 6 glorious minutes, Hot Chip fuse the uplifting soft pads and melodic keys of classic soulful house and the percussive swing of UK garage, full of sweet vocals and rhythmic snaps, to make an instant, club-ready hit.” No, YOU’RE a jar of vinegar:

2 It started out like a normal day. We sat around drinking coffee and looking out the window, then got together to play some folk songs on guitar and flute. Later, we all together to listen to La Luz singer-guitarist Shana Cleveland’s new solo single Face of the Sun, from her new album Night of the Wolf Moon. But when the joint got passed around, everything got weird. Next thing I know, faces were melting, limbs were turning into mannequin arms — and Cleveland’s gentle strumming and hazy singing were still going, as if it all had happened in only a few minutes. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE:Night of the Worm Moon occupies a different, vibrant kind of headspace. UFO sightings, insect carcasses, and twilight dimensions are all grist for Cleveland’s restless creativity, and they and other inspirations collide beautifully on the album’s 10 kaleidoscopic tracks–a spacebound transmission from America’s weirdo frontier.” This is your brain on Cleveland:

3+4 Kreischer Mansion is a stately Staten Island home that may or may not be haunted by its Bavarian builder, who killed himself 125 years ago. More recently, it was definitely haunted by Texas mood-rockers The Holy Knives, who played the deliciously dark delights Stray Dog and Switchblade from their album Year of the Black Dog. Enjoy the appropriately black-and-white results. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “Listening to Year of the Black Dog is like wandering through a melancholy desert dream. It is a mood-driven album with a western heart. The atmosphere creates a surreal backdrop to Valentine’s self-exploratory lyrics.” What do you figure a chandelier like that costs?

5 How much can anyone accomplish in 100 seconds? Well, it depends. If you’re singer-songwriter J.R. — you might know her as Welland’s Julianna Riolino — you can share the song Be My Man, a cathartic pop-rock firecracker that will get stuck in your brain the way bubblegum gets stuck in your hair. Imagine what she could do with two entire minutes. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “This song is about making the same mistake over and over, hoping that you learn from it. Going into a new relationship with unbridled confidence that a disaster isn’t waiting to happen. Be My Man was inspired by leaving the city and going back to my hometown. Hitting roadblocks and trying again. Stumbling into love and hoping for the best. Taking a leap of faith. Believing truths wrapped in lies. Be My Man is a plea to let go of the past and believe in the present.” Be here now:

6 There are some people in this world that you can never fool. Those people are called women. Every man knows this — including Jon Stancer, obviously. The Toronto singer-songwriter owns up to it in his single Can’t Get It By You, a gracious pop number that sports some Bee Gees-like touches that probably won’t get by you, whatever sex you happen to be. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “It’s a song about indulgence and deception, gratitude and love, that both laments and celebrates the watchful eyes and knowing hearts of those who truly love and know you most intimately.” Get it:

7 There’s good news and good news. The good news? Richmond indie-popster Minor Poet, led by singer-songwriter Andrew Carter, has just released a sweet new single called Museum District, from the upcoming EP The Good News. The good news? You can hear it below. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “I wanted to really emphasize how severe social anxiety is not one-dimensional. Everyone who deals with social anxiety also deals with a longing for the life they’re not living, a desire to be there for that one amazing night or life-changing party they’ll always miss because they couldn’t bring themselves to go. All while simultaneously knowing they couldn’t enjoy it even if they were there. Social anxiety is a mess of contradictions that add up to one powerfully limiting state.” Nothing to fear here:

8 Don’t cry for Claude Fontaine. The reggae-loving Los Angeles singer-songwriter seems to be doing enough of that on her own. She’s already treated us to the single Cry For Another, from her upcoming self-titled debut album. Now she’s back to share Hot Tears, another authentic piece of old-school reggae graced with haunting keyboards and topped with her ethereal vocals. It’ll put a smile on your face. Promise. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE:Hot Tears is another standout nod to the early 1970s Studio One, Trojan, and Treasure Isle records of Jamaica. Over muted percussion and flutters of trumpet, Fontaine tells a story of unrequited love.” Rock steady:

9 They used to be The Fabulous Progerians. Then they were The Mighty Progerians. Now, these Brussels noise-rockers just call themselves The Progerians. Which seems fair — after listening to Crush the Wise Men, a ferocious preview of their upcoming album Crush the Wise Men Who Refuse to Submit, it’s clear those adjectives are superfluous. Other words that need not apply: Awesome, Relentless, Bulldozing, Menacing and Killer. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “Standing on the shoulder of sheer ambition, Crush The Wise Men Who Refuse To Submit invites listeners on a hour-long journey, deep into the depths of spirit and substance in an attempt to sever all ties with inner demons. In no uncertain terms, it’s a devastating record and one you’d be crazy to miss.” Hit it:

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