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Indie Roundup | 11 Tracks For Your Midweek Enjoyment

Fast Romantics, Sorrey, Darin Bradbury and more help get you over the hump.

Fast Romantics can do no wrong, Sorrey flash gang signs, Darin Bradbury serves breakfast, Kelly Hoppenjans talks crazy and more in today’s Roundup. We’ve got snap, crackle and pop:

1 Personally, I have never understood the appeal of Karaoke — as a listener or a participant. Then again, if it were half as animated at the vibrantly colourful session depicted in the video for Toronto pop-rock outfit Fast Romantics’ zippy single Do No Wrong, I might think differently. But probably not. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “Our band has a bit of a Karaoke habit, so when our buds Anne (Douris, of Bossie) and Graham (Wright, of Tokyo Police Club) proposed we do a video set in a Karaoke bar, we jumped on it. Anyone who’s done enough Karaoke knows that some of those nights can get kinda dark, but in the spirit of this song, we really got into the idea of turning a rough night into pure magic.” Feel free to sing along:

2 P.E.I. dream-popsters Sorrey take to the streets of Toronto — and face off against a violent gang of furry fiends — in the video to their latest single Signs. It’s the latest preview of their long-awaited full-length. And easily the best video you’ll see today featuring costume-clad mayhem. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “It’s about tapping into the signs, or coincidences, happening around you,” explains the band’s namesake, Emilee Sorrey. “For me, it’s the story of meeting someone who fills in all the gaps. Where I fall short they’re in abundance, and vice versa.” Signs point toward success:

3 Love may be all you need. But it’s just the beginning for Jean-Paul De Roover. It’s only been a few months since the Thunder Bay alt-folk singer-songwriter released his sixth album — titled, yes, Love — bit he’s already back with a new video for the song I’d Do Anything. Wouldn’t we all, friend. Wouldn’t we all. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “Family and relationships are vastly important to De Roover as revealed in the song I’d Do Anything, which also shows off De Roover’s way with words. The opening couplet, “You gave me a call down in Mexico/To tell me that we would soon be a trio,” immediately sets the stage for the song of devotion to his wife and son that follows. In the video he plays solidly acoustic folk-pop with just vocal and guitar, a stripped down version of the more produced recording where he plays with rich sonic textures, and the kind of pop-filtered, ska-style beats that The Police did so well.” Anything goes:

4 The most important sentiments can be best left unspoken. Unless you’re talking about Unspoken History, a song from singer-songwriter Alex Lahey’s spring sophomore album The Best of Luck Club. That’s always worth hearing again in any form — including the intimate solo acoustic version captured here. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE:Unspoken History is perhaps the most personal song on the album. So personal that I’d rather keep the direct story behind it to myself – at least for now,” says Lahey. “The song was written on my girlfriend’s guitar in a tiny room in Nashville. This video more or less depicts the song in its purest form – played on the very same guitar, exactly how I first heard it when it spilled out of my mouth.” It’s history worth repeating:

5 For Matthew Chaim, this time it’s personal. Well, truth be told, it’s probably almost always personal for the Montreal singer-songwriter who now makes his home in L.A. But the video for his latest single Sunflowers is even more personal: They were his late father’s favourite flower. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE:Sunflowers is a deeply personal ode to parental loss. Matthew explains that the song was written as a conversation between father and son; it’s a chance for him to be able to share “with him both the helpless sadness of missing him – of missing those days that are now so far gone – and also the anger I have towards him for leaving so early in life.” Stand tall:

6 Claymation filmmaking seems like one of those arts that’s about a nanosecond away from vanishing forever. So we should support it whenever we can. Here’s an easy way: Watch Tacocat’s charming new video for Crystal Ball, a song from their recent album This Mess is a Place. What could be easier? SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “What a time to be barely alive,” laments Crystal Ball, a gem that examines the more intimate side of responding emotionally to the news cycle. How do you keep fighting when all you want to do is stay in bed all day? “Stupid computer stupor/Oh my kingdom for some better ads,” they sing, throwing in some classic Tacocat snark, “Truth spread so thin/It stops existing.” That’s crystal clear:

7 Sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying. And at those times, a troubadour like Darin Bradbury is right at home. The sharp-witted singer-songwriter’s highly anticipated new album Talking Dogs & Atom Bombs drops Sept. 20, but you can get a taste of what you’re in for with the animated video and single Breakfast, a wry serving of bittersweet folk-pop reminiscent of John Prine. It might be the most satisfying musical treat you get today. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “It’s an album trying to combat depression, to laugh your way out of depression, and to be honest and accurate with that depression,” Bradbury quips. “I try to write things that make me chuckle, and that chuckling is usually making peace with the existential dilemma of both the times and life in general.” No, I’M the king of Cerealtown:

8 I’ve received letters from prison. I get packages from all over the world. I’ve even had a postcard from the edge or two. But I’ve never been sent a romantic missive from the cuckoo’s nest. Until now. The sardonic If I Had You (Love Letter From a Padded Cell) comes courtesy of Nashville indie-rocker Kelly Hoppenjans, and if the rest of her Oct. 18 debut disc I Feel Better Now packs this much personality, I’m looking forward to visiting hours. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “I co-wrote this song with my friend Jess Kenney, and it’s partly inspired by how many times we’ve heard guys describe their ex-girlfriends as ‘crazy’ – it’s not a nice word! The lines can be very blurred between ‘love’ and ‘obsession.’ And calling a woman ‘crazy’ is an easy way to dismiss the way she is feeling by making her seem overly emotional or irrational.” Just what the doc ordered:

9 Some folks can dish it out. Some folks can take it. U.K. popster Leanne Tennant prefers to Bring it All Back, as she establishes on this buzzy new single from her forthcoming album. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “The song is about two people in conversation with alternative views. One is suggesting that they open up the dialogue and explore alternative ideas and beliefs however their requests are futile as they’re communicating with someone who has a fixed mindset.” Bring it on:

10 Toronto popsters Jane’s Party have some questions for you: “Have you ever been in a relationship where things get away from you? Have you ever said something wrong to the right person?” If your answer is the same as mine — ‘Does the Pope shit in the woods?’ — then they claim their latest single is for you. Though it may sound slightly familiar, since it’s a dreamy remake of their Casual Island album cut Straight From the Heart (not to be confused with the CanCon classic) featuring the vocal talents of none other than Skye Wallace. Now it’s officially a party. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “This new version explores love – both the exciting and mundane – and the compromise and empathy needed to sustain any relationship. Skye Wallace is featured on this recording, providing sublime vocals, as both a lead singer and in harmony with us. We wanted to evoke the feeling of knowing that the little things in a relationship are ultimately there to teach us about the importance of love and partnership.” Get straight to it:

11 German electronic producer and experimental drummer JBXDR (aka Jörn Bielfeldt) gets into a groove — and then works his knobtwiddling magic over top — in his smoothly flowing track Pocketcall. Is that the German version of buttdial? Either way, it’s easier to pronounce than either of his names. SAYS THE PRESS RELEASE: “After I had finished my debut record Wave Talk in a very open, but time-limited process based on improvisation and live performances, I wanted to take much more time in the lab this time around. Though I obviously wanted to push my own musicality in the making, I mainly strived to capture rather intimate and private perspectives in the music. Pocketcall for example is pretty much a hymn to my love life with my partner.. who – by the way, is sampled all over this track.” Take the call:

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