Indie Roundup (Taking Stock Edition) | Eight Songs To Elevate Your Thursday

Pharis & Jason Romero, Answering Machine, Dana Gavanski & more make a day of it.


Pharis & Jason Romero do double duty, Answering Machine share a drink, Dana Gavanski has a small favour to ask and more in today’s Roundup. So, now that the economy has basically ground to a halt, why do we need to keep stock brokers employed — and stealing more of our money?

1+2 | Pharis & Jason Romero | New Day + We All Fall

THE PRESS RELEASE:Bet On Love, the fifth record from two-time Juno winners Pharis and Jason Romero, is a modern folk ode to the reciprocal relationships between place, people and time. Recorded in their banjo shop outside the small Northern town of Horsefly, B.C., with the help of producer Marc Jenkins (who produced their Juno-winning 2018 record Sweet Old Religion), the album is quite literally home grown. The songs on Bet On Love, coming May 15, are inspired by the land the Romeros live on and the lifestyle they have chosen to lead, focused on balance, simplicity and intention. Pharis & Jason are sharing two songs from the album, New Day and We All Fall. “New Day is a wish for real connection and love, with hopes for lonely societies. When someone puts their hand in yours in love, they’re giving you a future and hope. And a triumphant refrain when you find it: ‘I can hear my voice a-singing across the valley, I can hear my voice a-singing across the hills. We All Fall is a story of rising and falling — with a young rise to pleasure, a middle-aged fall to loneliness, and the wisdom in later years to ‘love what I have, and don’t mind what is gone’. We all fall from time to time, but the song sings with a call that we aren’t alone.”

3 | Answering Machine | Cherry Coke

THE PRESS RELEASE:Answering Machine is a Rock & Roll band out of Brooklyn, NY. Their influences range everywhere from The Replacements, The Ramones, Blondie, The Ronettes, Tom Petty, Stevie Nicks, and Bruce Springsteen to Jenny Lewis, Against Me, and plenty in between. Samantha (vocals) and JD (guitar/vocals), two public school teachers in Brooklyn, started the band back in 2016. Close friends quickly filled the gaps with Jackson on guitar, Louis on drums, and Craig on bass. Craig and Louis played in a few popular local Brooklyn bands (Cold Wrecks, Ellen and The Degenerates). Answering Machine recently recorded their debut LP, titled Bad Luck. Writing and recording this album allowed their influences to blend and the band to find the sound they’ve been developing over the past few years. Bad Luck will be released April 17.”

4 | Dana Gavanski | Small Favours

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Serbian-Canadian musician Dana Gavanski will release her debut album, Yesterday Is Gone, on March 27. Today, she presents Small Favours, the final single before the album release. Dana shared her state of mind when she wrote Small Favours and how it came to her in a song : “Small Favours expresses a cheekiness. A playful dismissal of heaviness and getting bogged down by emotions, acknowledging how things may seem small when they’re big and big when they’re small.”

5 | The Heavy Eyes | God Damn Wolf Man

THE PRESS RELEASE:Love Like Machines is the brand-new album from heavy psych rockers The Heavy Eyes. Serving another round of the Memphis quartet’s heady brew of big riffs and Southern croon, this is the band’s first collection of new material in over five years. Picking back up on their signature sound; riffs that interlock like clockwork, rollicking drums and bass, and a Southern drawl that floats above it all like a ghost lost at sea, after 10 years together the band ventured into virgin territory. New sounds and structures await the listener. The songs sing of doomed armies, of lost loves, and of course, of that damn meddling Wolfman. In short, there is something here for everyone: the bellicose, the poignant, the absurd.”

6 | George Ogilvie | Die Down

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Rising singer-songwriter George Ogilvie continues to captivate listeners with his pensive, refined, soul-stirring music. He unveils his latest gem Die Down ahead of his forthcoming debut album White Out, officially out April 17. The latest cut is a deeply moving, guitar driven effort that is wistful in its execution. With a folk soul temperament that has come to be associated with the Brighton-hailing artist, Die Down brings imaginative song writing with a vocal performance that is both elusive yet alluring. Recorded at Peter Gabriel’s Real World studios and produced by Ali Staton (PJ Harvey, Snow Patrol), White Out will be a glorious celebration of an incredible artist and a beautiful milestone in what is sure to be long and fruitful career ahead.”

7 | Heidi Newfield | The Blues Is My Business

THE PRESS RELEASE: A good-timing, honky-tonkin’, band-leading, song-writing, love-song-singing, blues-harp-blowing, tradition-nurturing, genre-busting, crowd-carrying, full-hearted flag bearer for all that’s true about music. That’s Heidi Newfield. And on her new solo album The Barfly Sessions — recorded without heed to music business convention — she’s finally captured her full range. “No one was telling me what to do,” Newfield says. “No one put me in a box. Anyone asking me, what is the new music like? Ummmmm, it’s like me!” Credited with writing on 12 of the collection’s 14 songs, she brings her musical stamp to all of them, including a standout track she didn’t write. Blues Is My Business writer Kevin Bowe explains, “I’ve heard many, many versions … from Etta James to the old bar-band down the street … but no one owns this song like Heidi Newfield. Her combination of big-hearted soul and an even bigger middle finger gave this song exactly what it wanted. Having the legendary Delbert McClinton join Heidi was better than having the cherry on top — more like the spicy BBQ sauce, the perfect combination and flavor.”

8 | alekxandr | Disney Love

THE PRESS RELEASE: Cardiff-via-London visual artist alekxandr shares his authentically queer pop anthem Disney Love. Blending jazz lounge piano sounds with marching electropop drums, dreamy harp plucks and twinkling synths, Disney Love is a glittering pop banger created for the queer community. Talking about Disney Love, alekxandr said: “However much we think we’re past it, it’s what we were brought up on and it’s in our collective psyche: two heterosexuals meet, fall in love, dance through an enchanted forest and live happily ever after. Fresh heartbreak made me realise that real love is about communication; about acknowledging past traumas, triggers and navigating them together. That’s the real dance through the forest. When making the song’s bridge, it felt mischievously subversive to sample a 1949 USSR version of Cinderella.”