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Indie Roundup | 25 Tracks To Blast Into Your Weekend

Say so long to Friday with the sounds of Asthma Castle, Burning Witches and more.

Asthma Castle crush it, Burning Witches lie, GA-20 crack up, Anti-Flag spread the disease and more in today’s burstingly big-assed Roundup. RIP Neil Peart.


1 | Asthma Castle | Mount Crushmore

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Stoner metal/sludge dealers Asthma Castle — featuring drummer Adam Jarvis (Pig Destroyer, Misery Index, Scour), guitarists Justin Ethem (touring rhythm guitarist for Integrity) and Cameron Smith (Passage Between, Crawler), vocalist Zach Westphal (ex-J. Roddy Walston And The Business), and bassist Jeff Davis — unveil their new video for Mount Crushmore. Notes the band, “The video includes a very special appearance by Steve the Barber. It’s tough to pick out, but at one point, Adam is drinking beer out of a cowbell. Later, he’s drinking while playing drums at the same time! Such talent! There are several hidden references to Baltimore, such as the mullet guy wearing a Kix sleeveless shirt standing outside of Umberto’s as Zach struts by.”

2 | Burning Witches | Sea Of Lies

THE PRESS RELEASE: “At the end of 2019, Burning Witches promised the release of the first taster from their forthcoming album Dance With The Devil, which is due on March 6 — and today the group has delivered in the form of the lead single Sea Of Lies. The quintet says, “We are delighted to present you our second single Sea Of Lies! “In our humble opinion, the track mirrors the album really well. The old-school vibe, the heavy as hell approach and the growly yet very melodic moments showcase the evolved WITCHES of 2020! The lyrical content deals with very personal events that took place during 2019, when there was a lot of challenges around the band. We hope you enjoy it as much as we do!”


3 | GA-20 | Crackin’ Up

THE PRESS RELEASE:GA-20 was formed by friends Pat Faherty and Matthew Stubbs in Boston, MA in 2018. The project was born out of their mutual love of heavy traditional Blues, R&B, and Rock & Roll of the late ’50s and early ’60s. Faherty and Stubbs bonded over legendary artists like Lazy Lester, J.B. Lenoir, Earl Hooker, Buddy Guy, Otis Rush and Junior Wells. Feeling a void in current music, the duo have set out to write, record and perform a modern version of this beloved art form. Live, GA-20 is a trio of 2 guitars, vocals and drums. Raw, passionate and honest performance – both on stage and in the studio – is the only goal. Stubbs has spent the past 11 years as guitarist for Blues legend Charlie Musselwhite. During that time he has also backed up and toured with such Blues giants as John Hammond, James Cotton, Junior Watson and James Harman. Stubbs also leads his own original instrumental psych-rock band, The Antiguas.”

4 | Anti-Flag | The Disease

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Political punk icons Anti-Flag are releasing their new album 20/20 Vision next Friday, Jan. 17. Today they’ve shared one more preview with their biting new single The Disease. The track finds the long-running band at their best, seamlessly merging the energy and passion of their music with uncompromising sociopolitical commentary. The song’s accompanying music video highlights the dystopian unease and paranoia lurking beneath the surface of modern culture. Anti-Flag bassist/vocalist Chris #2 explained the new song, saying: “The Disease is an interesting song for us lyrically. We’re actively trying to use verbiage and the language of the powerful to describe our commonality. Our usual approach would have us calling out social inequity in our own terms, but for this song we chose to take ownership of their words. In a moment of the largest wealth divide in history, these people do see the poor as a disease, a plague on their society. The neoliberalism and globalization that has led us here is causing people to see their neighbors, immigrants, refugees as their enemies and has propped up false populists to power.”

5 | Fat Freddy’s Drop | Raleigh Twenty

THE PRESS RELEASE:Fat Freddy’s Drop take their new studio album Special Edition Part 1 for a spin with the video for Raleigh Twenty. Inspired by the classic Raleigh 20 bike, popular in New Zealand in the 70’s & early 80’s, the music video idea came about over a breakfast of muesli, orange juice and a stack of pancakes between Freddy’s vocalist Dallas Tamaira aka Joe Dukie and video director Mark Williams. Peter Gallagher, the bike mechanic in the video, is a genuine veteran of the NZ BMX scene who runs Rad Garage in Auckland. The lead biker is Tumohio Newman, who discovers the Raleigh 20 and takes it to Pete to rebuild the classic bike and make it roadworthy again. The ride transports us to NYC and the awesome 537 Ryderz from the Lower East Side of Manhattan.”

6 | Mighty Mocambos | Golden Shadow

THE PRESS RELEASE: “In 2019, The Mighty Mocambos returned in fine form with their new album 2066, played a storming European tour and celebrated a colourful year delivering their own true style of funk, Afro, hip hop with cinematic compositions and storytelling. The mean streets groove and furious drums versus car chase workout of Golden Shadow was soon identified as DJ favourites. So here it is to jumpstart 2020 with.”

7 | My Dying Bride | Your Broken Shore

THE PRESS RELEASE: “British doom death legends My Drying Bride unveil the video for Your Broken Shore, taken from the upcoming album The Ghost Of Orion which will be out on March 6. The new record is the product of a vibrantly creative band that is more than willing to build on their successes in the past. Singer Aaron Stainthorpe about Your Broken Shore: “The first song from My Dying Bride for five years comes laced with passion, power and their unyielding desire to create the most thoughtful and heavy music possible.” Your Broken Shore is recognizably theirs despite an evolution spanning 30 years, it’s new and fresh but with unmistakable provenance and production surpassing anything they have previously released.”

8 | Sylosis | Calcified

THE PRESS RELEASE:Sylosis are set to release their fifth studio album Cycle Of Suffering, on Feb. 7. Today, the band dropped Calcified, the second single from the forthcoming record.”

9 | Ebony Buckle | Susan

THE PRESS RELEASE:Ebony Buckle is a London-based singer/songwriter. Hailing from the seaside town of Townsville, Australia, Buckle was encouraged into the entertainment industry by her parents, studying singing, violin, piano and drama and before long she completed a degree in opera singing. Taking listeners on a whimsical leftfield-pop journey with her complex harmonies and imaginative storytelling lyricism, Buckle sings about topics covering everything from romance and broken hearts to disgruntled mermaids, lonely whales and alien invasion. The quirky songstress is introducing her single Susan. A track dedicated to her imaginary best friend and alter ego, Susan the Raptor. Mixing elements of whimsy folk, with fanciful pop melodies and infectious lyrics, all baked in to one big Ebony Buckle cake, the delightfully eccentric musician has created a delicious sound, bursting with vibrancy and charm. Emitting a joyous feeling with a hint of melancholy, the track highlights the singer’s operatic trained vocals, which shine brightly throughout. Buckle reveals, “Susan was born one night after too much prosecco and the name just stuck. She is the carefree, risk-taking and sometimes reckless side of me. I think we are all made up of many different personalities and I just decided to name one of mine! Mostly we wanted to make a really joyful track that would make people smile.”

10 | Payson Lewis | Nothing To You

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Directed by Collin H. Duffy (Superfruit, Hunter Hayes, Toly), the music video follows the former Sing Off! contestant as he laments about being only a doormat (quite literally) for his lover. The latest release follows on the heels of his debut EP Take Me Apart.

11 | Alex Dowling | In Silence, In Cold

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Irish composer and producer Alex Dowling shared In Silence, In Cold, the second single and video from his forthcoming album Realty Rounds, which was written for four vocalists (who each use customized wireless controllers to manipulate their AutoTuned voices in real-time) and synthesizer (performed by Grammy-nominated composer/pianist Pascal Le Bouef). The new preview, as Dowling explains, “is a simple hymn about the fear of isolation and the need for new information. The choir sits around a digital fire, enhancing the sense of solitude and contemplation. As they perform, the singers manipulate how much AutoTune they have on their voices, exposing their natural voice with all its imperfections as though lifting a veil – a reminder of the human fragility behind these digital enhancements.”

12 | Psalm Zero | Animal Outside

THE PRESS RELEASE: “New York City-based Psalm Zero, the art metal outfit led by guitarist/singer/songwriter Charlie Looker, announces their third album, Sparta. Having garnered respect in the metal underground over the past seven years for their intense blend of disparate styles and genres, Psalm Zero deliver another statement of their truly unique vision of heavy music. With the premiere of Animal Outside, Charlie Looker offers, “This is the most alternative rock/pop-oriented song on the record. Lyrically, it deals with anxiety over the death of Humanism, and the Human as a concept, under assault by the Dark Enlightenment, and by the rise of artificial intelligence. It shifts between sad, resigned fatalism, and warm, romantic, almost religious defiance.”

13 | Lyrics x Intell | Work It Out

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Starting 2020 with a burst of energy, recording artist and audio engineer Lyrics and 2nd Generation Wu member Intell have just released the dark pulsating single Work It Out. Work It Out drives a pulverizing beat through chopped R&B samples, holding up Intell’s cannonball flow before ending on the smooth and melodic outro, courtesy of Lyrics. Lyrics is a voice for a generation between times; from the sultry grit influenced by Sade and Damien Marley, to his eccentric styles that emulate the new millennia. Lyrics finds himself in an unboxed, uncategorized space that produces a unique sound, heavily influenced by late 90’s R&B, Pop, and Hip-Hop. Intell explains his process: “I hit the studio that night feeling a different kind of creativity flowing through me. Inspired by real life events, I used that motivation to tell a story in what I believed the most interesting & intense way. To me work it out was exactly what the title is made out to be.”

14 | Today Is The Day | You’re All Gonna Die

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Visionary metal outfit Today Is The Day presents You’re All Gonna Die, the new single from the band’s impending eleventh studio full-length, No Good To Anyone, out Feb. 28. No Good To Anyone was recorded and mastered by Today Is The Day’s Steve Austin, and is a crushing display of the band’s singular psychedelic-yet-scathing sound and stands as a symbol of overcoming pain and adversity of the most extreme nature. The album was created over several years of Austin’s battle with several major surgeries and treatments on a myriad of levels including a vicious battle with Lyme Disease. Austin proclaims with the pummeling You’re All Gonna Die single, “When you beat a person down and nothing let’s up, you need to fight back. The only person that is going to fight for you, is you. You’re All Gonna Die paints a picture of what happens you when you push someone way too far.”

15 | Franklin Electric | Ghost

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Montreal based Alt/Indie-Folk collective The Franklin Electric share their latest single Ghost from their upcoming In Your Heart EP, out Feb. 21. “This song speaks about taking a good look at yourself inside and out,” says frontman Jon Matte. “We can easily wander off the path away from ourselves sort of like a ghost.”

16 | David Haerle | Go Do That With Sharon

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Los Angeles singer/songwriter/guitarist David Haerle has taken a very unique — and at times winding — path that has led to the release of his new single, Go Do That With Sharon. This is the first song off his forthcoming album Death Valley, a 15-track collection which will be released Spring 2020. “The song’s kind of an inside joke between me and my partner Erica,” Haerle explains. “We have a very good friend, Sharon, who likes to do things some people might find a little offbeat or kooky, like the international UFO convention she just attended. When Erica and I are traveling, say on Interstate 15 and I exclaim, ‘I’d love to go explore that abandoned water park over there,’ something she has zero interest in, she’ll say ‘go do that with Sharon.’ Even in the best of relationships there will be interests both parties don’t share, so to be able to have other friends you can ‘go do that with’ is a healthy thing.”

17 | Dom Flemons | Too Long (I’ve Been Gone)

THE PRESS RELEASE: “A co-founder of the Grammy-winning Carolina Chocolate Drops, Dom Flemons was a member of the group from their inception in 2005 through 2013. His third solo album, Prospect Hill, was released in 2014 after Flemons spent many years learning and playing with tradition bearers such as Marty Stuart, Taj Mahal, Guy Davis, Mike Seeger, and James “Boot” Hanks, among many others. After spending decades listening to a variety of vinyl records, 78s and CDs, Flemons took these musical influences and transformed them into an album that redefines The American Songster. In 2020, this seminal release returns in an amazing expanded edition. Prospect Hill: The American Songster Omnibus, due out Feb. 28. Flemons has recorded original songs and instrumental tracks that paint a mosaic of American music ranging from the songsters of the 1920s to the present.”

18 | Marshall Crenshaw | Only An Hour Ago

THE PRESS RELEASE: “I love it that phonograph records are popular again,” enthuses Marshall Crenshaw. “They were consigned to oblivion by the music business back when I was recording … but now they’re back!” The artist recently regained ownership of the five acclaimed albums he released between 1994 and 2003, and plans to issue revised editions of those efforts, on vinyl and on all digital platforms, beginning with his 1996 release Miracle of Science, due Jan. 17. The new edition of Miracle of Science includes a pair of bonus tracks, Misty Dreamer by Scottish indie-pop artist Daniel Wylie, and What the Hell I Got, a 1974 number by Canadian artist Michel Pagliaro.”

19 | Sofia | Sorry

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Emerging Finnish artist Sofia steps into the new year with the brooding, R&B-tinged single, Sorry, featuring Jesse Markin’s thoughtful verses. Opening up on the story behind the song, Sofia explained how the idea for the track came from the “cheesiest” quote she found – “If you can’t love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love somebody else?” She continues, “I wrote this song while going through a breakup, just admitting that you’re through can be a pretty hard thing to do, but some things can’t be locked out and need to be experienced.” Sorry is a confessional story about hope, love and vulnerability, mixing swooping live instruments, samples and synths with brooding vocals – Sofia once again is able to turn extremely personal emotions into something every listener can relate to.”

20 | Bart Budwig | Four Leaf Clover

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Today marks the release of the third single from Bart Budwig’s forthcoming LP, Another Burn on the Astroturf, out Jan. 24. Four Leaf Clover features Astoria-based indie-folk duo The Hackles, who often perform as part of Bart’s touring band. Here’s how Bart describes the track: “Four Leaf Clover is a song for the beautiful, impermanent parts of life. I wrote it when I met a gal in front of a smoke shop in Moscow Idaho. I was there at the smoke shop with my guitar trying to finish up writing The Captain & The Dreamer (another song on Another Burn on the AstroTurf). She was there to celebrate getting a job on the East Coast. Two weeks later she was gone and I decided to move to Enterprise Oregon to start working at the OK Theatre.”

21 | Jim Lauderdale | As A Sign

THE PRESS RELEASE: “On the heels of 2019’s From Another World, the prolific, two-time Grammy Award-winning American music icon Jim Lauderdale will release his 33rd album, When Carolina Comes Homes Again, March 6. Returning to his geographical and musical roots, the 13-track bluegrass album pays homage to his native North Carolina and harkens back to the earliest music he learned to play. Recorded in Asheville, NC, the 13-track album features instrumental accompaniment from various members of NC-based acts, including Balsam Range, Cane Mill Road, Hank Pattie & the Current, John Stickley, Songs From The Road Band, Steep Canyon Rangers, and Town Mountain; as well as Matt Pruett (banjo); Pattie Hopkins Kinlaw (fiddle); Aaron Ramsey (mandolin); Nick Dauphinais and Presley Barker on guitars. “North Carolina has such a long and important heritage in bluegrass music,” Lauderdale says. “Since it’s where I’m originally from and where I started playing bluegrass, it seemed right to go back to my roots in bluegrass there and collaborate with musicians in that area. There’s just something in the atmosphere there. Hearing bluegrass in different areas and settings in North Carolina, the music is just there in the air. The first bluegrass festival I ever went to was Union Grove when I was 14, and it blew my mind. The music got into my bones, and I just had to get a banjo.” The first single, As A Sign, was co-written with Robert Hunter.”

22 | Crywolf | beauty is not a need, she is an ecstasy [respirate]

THE PRESS RELEASE:Crywolf is making his grand entrance into the new year with the release of his new single, beauty is not a need, she is an ecstasy [respirate]. Lamenting on the same break up he opened up about on his late 2019 single, your joy is your sorrow unmasked, Crywolf continues to rise from the ashes of heartbreak on beauty is not a need, she is an ecstasy [respirate]. Diverging from the rich electronic sounds he has been known for, Crywolf employs a more acoustic-led approach on the new singles, intertwining lilting vocals and melancholy instrumentation that draw the listener in to an emotionally-vibrant story of heartbreak. “I wrote this alone in the forest, hours from civilization and a million miles from you,” Crywolf writes to his past love. “You had left, but I still felt you in every inhalation, every exhalation. You had swept me up into the cosmos and left me there, suspended. Making your indelible print on my soul. I still breathe you in and out, and live with you there in that space.”

23 | Janet Devlin | Honest Men

THE PRESS RELEASE: “The third single from Janet Devlin’s upcoming concept album Confessional (out May 1) is a sobering anti-ballad written solely by the 25 year-old Irish singer-songwriter.” If ever a song was to speak so timely of its age, then Janet Devlin’s Honest Men is the shattered black mirror reflection these dark days deserve. As bleak as it is bewitching, and as stark as it is sorrowful, Honest Men is the evidence that Janet has already lived more lifetimes than most. Released in January as the perfect antidote to saccharine-loaded festive hits, the ominous track immediately draws the listener in with its quiet yet menacing introduction and stripped-back piano. The reverb-heavy low guitar riffs are overlaid with an evocative chain-gang clattering of chains, claps and foot stomps which generates Janet’s clarion call to break free from the imprisonment of her past. A mimicked heartbeat midway through the song provides a thrilling lead-in to the song’s climax where Janet is joined by a spine-tingling choral accompaniment bringing the track to its hushed conclusion.”

24 | Steff Reed x Tom Kunzman | Redemption Song

THE PRESS RELEASE:Tom Kunzman, one half of NJ pop-rock/punk duo 18th & Addison and Brooklyn, NY singer, songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist Steff Reed have teamed up on a cover of Bob Marley’s Redemption Song. Kunzman says, “I’m a genuine fan of Steff and I always felt that his live show is very similar to 18th & Addison’s. We’re both doing our best to bring people together to sing and forget all the division, confusion and frustration outside those four walls for a bit. I love the feeling of unity and togetherness Redemption Song offers so naturally, I felt that collaborating with him on this just had to happen.” Reed adds, “Tom and I met in Philadelphia, a few years back while we were both on tour. We stayed in touch and organically a friendship grew. One day Tom sent me a DM on Instagram with an idea to do a cover of Bob Marley’s iconic protest song, Redemption Song together. I have such admiration for Tom as an artist and musician, and I was excited to collaborate.”

25 | Seth Glier | Stages

THE PRESS RELEASE:Grammy-nominated Seth Glier is a singer-songwriter, producer, and multi instrumentalist. His critically acclaimed, emotionally dense catalog of work often draws upon traditional roots music, experimental instrumentation, and moody atmospheres that result in soulfully intelligent stories that can alternatively fight the power or break your heart. Stages captures the magic and secret joy that’s shared when close relationships evolve using the universal art of ritual. Glier plans to put out more music throughout the year while continuing to connect with audiences using his eclectic, often humorous, and always insightful artistry.”