Indie Roundup (Cartoon Tunes Edition) | 42 Tracks To Get You Through The Weekend

Get animated with the help of Badly Drawn Boy, The Dears, Timmy Trumpet & more.


Badly Drawn Boy turns yellow, The Dears have a bad dream, El Shirota change direction, Harry Stafford goes goth, Buster Shuffle make a heroic effort, Gridfailure want to turn back time and more in today’s typically bloated Friday Roundup. There are a ton of animated videos today. Your guess is as good as mine.

1 | Badly Drawn Boy | Banana Skin Shoes

THE PRESS RELEASE:Badly Drawn Boy, aka Damon Gough, is set to make his eagerly awaited return with the release of a new album on May 22. Banana Skin Shoes features 14 brand new tracks including the political pop of current single Is This A Dream? and sees Gough pushing forward yet again both musically and lyrically whilst retaining some of his classic trademarks. Always one to wear his heart on his sleeve, Gough’s ninth album and first studio album in a decade is a truly personal and heartfelt collection of songs, a huge statement of intent and the most glorious, colourful warming, honest pop record you’ll probably hear all year. The new single Banana Skin Shoes is out now and accompanied by an animated video by award-winning film directors Broken Antler.”

2 | The Dears | Instant Nightmare

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Montréal quintet The Dears, led by husband & wife duo Murray Lightburn and Natalia Yanchak, released their latest grand opus Lovers Rock today. In addition to the album, they shared the video for their track Instant Nightmare! “This is a super fun one, a heavy, trudging beast with strings and restrained vocals,“ says Yanchak, who handles lead vocals on Instant Nightmare! “Like the song is The Hulk and I’m Black Widow holding his hand saying: Take it easy, big guy.” The video, co-directed by Alexandre Pelletier, combines animation with footage of Natalia and Murray, a blend of mediums that presented a logistical challenge during the COVID-19 shutdown. “Normally I loathe making music videos that involve us having to be there,” Lightburn says. “Despite the circumstances of this shoot I was way into this because as a hobby photographer, I got to spend most of my time as the default cameraman. Natalia sings this one, which is a relief for me. I learned so much from working with Natan (DOP) and Alex (director). I’m grateful for their patience with me trying to be their remote eyes and hands. Hopefully I did a good enough job that maybe they’ll hire me for a gig on another shoot one day.”

3 | El Shirota | A Donde Voy (Revamp)

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Mexico City’s El Shirota will release their long-awaited debut album, appropriately titled Tiempos Raros (Rare Times), on June 12. Today, the band shared the video for A Donde Voy (Revamp), a song about feeling awake and dreaming at the same time. “We come from a post-hardcore and punk background, so this song feels like an expression of freedom,” says singer and guitarist Ignacio Gomez. “It’s an emotional and noisy song about dealing with accepting yourself as you are and the new emotions going through your life. That idea instantly connects with the plot on the video — getting outside of the trip and waking up from a more angular and exaggerated cowboy punk dream full of noise to a more sober, yet relieving reality where friends are what gives you a sensation of being home, even during the very weird and difficult times occurring as we speak.”

4 | Harry Stafford | Gothic Urban Blues

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Manchester-based indie music stalwart Harry Stafford presents his new single Gothic Urban Blues, the title track from his new album, as well as a moody accompanying video reflecting the vibe of this blues-rock lament for the city. The album itself is about the Metropolis, the naked city, the urban sprawl and the need to get back to the ripped back streets when you’re far away. If there are a million stories in the naked city, here are a few to keep you warm. “Gothic Urban Blues: This is the city viewed from a futuristic hover car or spaceship or obscure superhero. We have sprouted wings and become unclassifiable creatures or obdurate squabbling angels and daemons swooping between the towers and looking down at the insects below,” says Harry Stafford. “It’s also a groove on city life and walking in the traffic and the noise and the people. Something we won’t be doing for a few weeks yet. Everyone’s shouting silently at each other afraid to be noticed afraid to be invisible.”

5 | Buster Shuffle | You Spoke Louder Everyday

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Ska-punk Londoners Buster Shuffle have teamed up with their friends while in isolation to help raise money for the World Health Organization. Their friends that made a musical contribution to the cause include members of Flogging Molly, Die Toten Hosen, Donots, Hepcat, Mad Caddies, Talco, The Infadels, The Toy Dolls, and the lady of ska Rhoda Dakar. Unsung Heroes vinyl 7-inch will be released on July 17 and features two brand new songs inspired by real heroes. The first instalment, You Spoke Louder Everyday, was inspired by Iqbal Masih. “Being on lockdown made me think a lot,” explains Buster Shuffle frontman Jet Baker. “Both of my sisters are NHS workers and are on the front line endangering themselves and me I can’t do anything other than stay at home as advised. So, we as a band decided to write some songs inspired by our current unsung heroes.”

6 | Gridfailure | Wish To Disinvent

THE PRESS RELEASE:Wish To Disinvent is the latest video by New York City-area hostile faction Gridfailure. Joining Gridfailure’s creator David Brenner on the new song are guests Chuck Schaaf (Deadbird, Pinebox), his wife Star, and their children, Izzie and Mason. Wish To Disinvent is found on the incoming Sixth Mass-Extinction Skulduggery II — the second instalment in five-album concept series — which is nearing release on June 5. Brenner offers, “While I was writing the lyrics for Wish To Disinvent, Chuck and I were discussing collaborating on something where he played drums, while he usually plays guitar in Deadbird. However, I was not expecting the track to be accompanied by his entire family playing alongside him until he sent the track. I loved the fact that his family wanted to take part in this, and the material gave me the groundwork to finish the song immediately. It’s one of the most straightforward pieces of the SMES II album. To depict a disorienting and harsh a post-war environment for the video, I infused imagery from abandoned Cold War-era Army bases — some filmed by Graham Scala in North Carolina and more by myself at a different base in New York.”

7 | Volumes | Pixelate

THE PRESS RELEASE:Volumes have dropped the official video for the new song Pixelate. “The song is about consuming and ingesting too much social media and news,” the band explains. “It’s about the negative influence that these platforms, applications, and publications have on us today.” The video was shot safely and while adhering to social distancing and quarantine guidelines in various locations in the band’s native Los Angeles during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

8 | Kuarantine | No No No

THE PRESS RELEASE:Kuarantine, a new rock ‘n’ roll band featuring Fozzy frontman and multi-hyphenate superstar Chris Jericho, have released their debut single No No No, a cover of the KISS 1987 deep-cut. The all-star quartet is rounded out by Kent Slucher (drummer for Luke Bryan), guitarist Joe McGinness (of KLASSIK ’78) and bassist PJ Farley (of Trixter) with Jericho on vocals. “When Kent and Joe approached me to sing on a few ’80s KISS songs, I jumped at the chance, as it’s my favorite era of my favorite band,” shares Jericho. “Once we brought in PJ, not only did we have a world-class band with years of touring experience, we also had four guys with one common bond: to stay creative and to do something special for all music fans during this pandemic. No No No is the perfect debut release for Kuarantine as not only is it a crushing, FUN rock ‘n’ roll tune, but it’s guaranteed to satisfy and put a smile on your face…whether you want one or not!”

9 | Pharis and Jason Romero | Roll On My Friend

THE PRESS RELEASE:Pharis and Jason Romero started a video contest back in March. They asked fans to send in homemade music videos for an unreleased track on their new record — a rhythmic, gourd banjo-driven song about taking time and letting the world go by titled Roll On My Friend. The winning video maker would receive one of their coveted Romero gourd banjos. In some cosmic collision, the timing of the contest became a unique and powerful window into experiences of creativity during social isolation, distancing and coping. 60 entries came in from around the world, from Argentina to B.C., Denmark to India. The videos showed people sparked by the inspiration they needed to get out and be creative during lockdown, welcoming the distraction, finding a source of joy and fun, and connecting in a therapeutic experience. “We were blown away,” says Pharis. “Choosing a winning video was nearly impossible. But in the end, we were drawn again and again to a journey of a family canoeing up to northern Canada in the 1960’s, following their adventure in a way that was engaging, beautiful, and perfectly reminiscent of the spirit of the song.”

10 | Primal Fear | Along Came The Devil

THE PRESS RELEASE:Primal Fear recently finished the recording of their highly anticipated 13th studio album, set to be titled Metal Commando and to be released on July 24. The title of the album speaks for itself — Metal Commando contains 110% Primal Fear and is full to the brim with their signature power and energy. Today, the band are pleased to release first single Along Came The Devil. Bassist and producer Mat Sinner comments: “Along Came The Devil is an assurance for our fans all over the world, that there are no unnecessary experiments or negative surprises on the new Primal Fear album Metal Commando, and that they’ll get exactly what they’ve been waiting for. Sharp PF riffs, strong vocals, groovy drums and a rich production. Due to the current circumstances, the band couldn’t come together to make a video, so instead we just made the best of the situation and put our energy into a really elaborate lyric video. We hope that you have fun with our new song and video. Crank it up!”

11 | Paradise Lost | Obsidian

THE PRESS RELEASE: “The day has finally arrived: Paradise Lost give their new gem Obsidian to the world today. Under the circumstances of the last months, the new masterpiece of the band became something like a sign of hope for music fans all over the worlds, the previously released singles a soundtrack for these difficult, uncertain times. These days, the British legend from Halifax is the drug that numbs the pain , the lover that takes away the sorrows, the story that craves to be told. But of course, everyone spins his or her own story in the turbulences of life. But the most important: A new chapter begins. And that’s what gives us hope in difficult times like this. Nick Holmes states: “Musically, this is a song of 2 halves and was originally written as an intro towards the end of the Obsidian writing process. As a result, it’s one of the more spontaneous songs on the album. Lyrically, it’s a song about choosing the wrong path – failing to look before you leap, and dealing with the consequence of dubious decisions.”

12 | Re.decay | Sun In The Morning

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Noteworthy Hip Hop duo Re.decay have created the surreal music video from debut single, Sun In The Morning (feat. ADH, Mawcom X, Sedric Perry). The single is lifted from their upcoming EP, Down Long Enough, which will be released on June 19. Re.decay reveal a little more about the magic that went into creating the music video: “Sun In The Morning was filmed and conceived by Alex Forge, a wildly talented French film maker. Sedric shot his part in Owen’s studio in Berlin while ADH and Mawcom X filmed their parts in NYC and Accra respectively. Then Alex edited it in Spain and uploaded it over a full day on WiFi that was struggling with the number of quarantined people on it. Like all of our endeavours it involved an international group of creative people overcoming obstacles to make something great.”

13 | Thomas Azier | Hold On Tight

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Dutch multi-faceted artist Thomas Azier teases more new music and visuals with Hold On Tight, the final taste of his upcoming album Love, Disorderly, set for release on June 12. While earlier singles Love, Disorderly and Entertainment and their respective short films, embody the sense of socio-political urgency, freeform expression and unflinching experimentation permeating the album, Hold On Tight shows a more tender side. Reaching a dramatic high early on with its brooding synth chords and metronomic string stabs, while Thomas builds his rich tenor to an emotional crescendo. Ayato explains how the film “observes the people of Myanmar on their daily commute as dawn breaks. The friendship between me and Thomas sparked a desire to create a series of motorbike memories. Freedom within chaos, acceptance of danger, riding towards a new day.”

14 | Wild Tales | Super Perfundo

THE PRESS RELEASE:Wild Tales’ fourth single of the year is Super Perfundo, a track cut from the same cloth as prog storytellers Coheed and Cambria and influenced by the cult classic film, Waking Life. Singer Adam says: “Lyrically it’ll take you on a lucid journey within dreams as it tumbles and falls through nightmares, elation and outright murder. Horse murder to be exact.” Super Perfundo follows the previous trio of sing-alongs released this year.”

15 | Lucy & La Mer | Together

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Los Angeles artist Lucy & La Mer continues to spread cheer with her latest EP I Feel Better Now. An advocate for mental health awareness, Lucy’s sound is a whirlwind of joy, camaraderie, and liberation. Her welcoming stage presence and distinctive style have led to bookings around the world, and her shows have become pep rallies for self-love and inclusivity. Her new crowd-chanting tune Together perfectly captures the silver lining of our world’s current emotional state during quarantine — Togetherness. During this challenging time, people all over the world are coming together to care for one another. In her new music video, fans and friends of the folk-pop singer send their positivity and encouragement through selfie videos submitted from their homes. “Tour might be canceled for this year, but the music isn’t canceled. Our love for each other isn’t canceled. And in these low times, we need to lift each other up more than ever.”

16 | Foul Body Autopsy | Purified Ready To Reclaim 2020

THE PRESS RELEASE: “For the last two years Foul Body Autopsy has been walking the dusty roads of a world in the rotting grip of the undead. Inspired by the classic zombie films of George Romero, Tom Reynolds brought us the This Machine Kills Zombies album and follow-up EP The Unquiet Dead, riff-driven masterpieces of melodic death that took us from the first broken casket, through the screams and bloodshed , to the endless silence of a planet devoid of life. Now we reach the final page of this epic story, the concluding words before this volume of the Foul Body Autopsy saga is over. Purified Ready To Reclaim originally appeared on the This Machine Kills Zombies album, but it has now been completely reworked and reimagined to create the perfect coda to Foul Body Autopsy’s years amongst the dead. This new single version features real drums, courtesy of Alex Micklewright, along with keyboards, synths, acoustic guitar and a wonderfully atmospheric final touch of piano from Aaron Bright. Tom Reynolds has also re-recorded all his vocals and guitar parts — the guitars benefitting from the added power of Blackstar amplification who now endorse Tom.”

17 | Zheani | Dirt On The Name Of Steven

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Australian rapper, songwriter, and artist Zheani has shared Dirt On the Name Of Steven, the second single off her upcoming The Zheani Sparkes EP, due out on May 29. Dirt On The Name Of Steven is another chapter in Zheani’s self-reflective story. Speaking on the track, Zheani states: “For many years after his death I suppressed memories of my father and our relationship. In contrast to all the other adult men from my childhood he was intelligent and spiritual. This gentleness was often a topic of ridicule in an environment where the rough, heavy handed and bad men ruled. However he was also deeply flawed with an incapacity to finish anything he started and a predilection towards addiction and depression. The last time he called me I stubbornly refused to answer the phone. At his funeral I couldn’t bring myself to cry. On Dirt on the Name of Steven I rap about him, I rap about men and about memories of a world I have left far behind but can’t untangle from the web of who I am.”

18 | Party Pupils | Lonelier

THE PRESS RELEASE:Neon From Now On is a quintessential representation of the colorful dance music Party Pupils (vocalist MAX and producer Suave Yung Blanc) have created since 2018. It opens up with Lonelier, a previously unreleased single featuring Alna on vocals.“At the beginning of this project, we set out to create a cohesive mix of all the styles of electronic music that we love. Along the way, we got to work with some fantastic singers and producers. Being able to collaborate with musicians that we were already fans of, made the process of creating this EP even more special.”

19 | John Borra | Hambre & Dolores

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto alt-country scene fixture John Borra releases a new video for the track Hambre & Dolores from Blue Wine, his latest album that has been steadily garnering critical praise worldwide since its arrival earlier this year. The video expands on the lyrical themes of Hambre & Dolores — written by award-winning poet Eva H.D. — by matching them with public domain visuals from a 1923 film of Oscar Wilde’s play Salome. Borra explains, ““Hambre and Dolores is Spanish for ‘hunger and pain,’ and both are represented in the video and the song. There’s also a longing for the object of the characters’ affection in both the song and video. It’s love that is never realized — although there’s no beheading in the song as there is in the video.”

20 | 7candystars | Cordial

THE PRESS RELEASE:7candystars self-released their genre-blending debut EP, Cherish. Across the powerful four tracks on the release, the duo of Kane Gelaznik (vocals/guitars) and Jason Duarte (bass/synth) showcase a more aggressive alternative rock sound mixed with new wave, goth, industrial and pop tendencies. To celebrate the release, the band have also shared a visualizer for the hard-hitting, emotional opener Cordial. On the track, Gelzanik executes a haunting, yet stark vocal tone on painful lyrics like “I forget all your names, erased, degraded.”

21 The National Parks | Waiting For Lightning

THE PRESS RELEASE: “As they gear up for the release of their fourth full-length album Wildflower on June 19th, folk-influenced indie pop band The National Parks have released new single Waiting For Lightning. The folky song about waiting for your chance showcases the group’s male/female soothing harmonies. “Waiting For Lightning was a song that started pouring out of me late one night,” explains lead vocalist/guitarist Brady Parks. “I remember sitting in my room with my guitar and this visual of lightning kept coming to my mind. At its core, this song is about feeling like you are waiting for something so rare and spectacular. It’s about setting the fear of the unknown aside and stepping out into the storm. It’s about holding on despite challenges that arise. We hope this song can be a reminder to hold on to hope and to not let go of the things that matter most to you.”

22 | Ruff Majik | All You Need Is Speed

THE PRESS RELEASE: “South Africa’s sludge ‘n’ roll wizards Ruff Majik have unleashed All You Need Is Speed, the first single from their upcoming full-length The Devil’s Cattle, set for release later this year. The track is a high octane, riff fuelled, round-house kick to the head. When asked to comment on the inspiration behind the track, vocalist and guitarist Johni Holiday laughed, “Sometimes you just want to drive really fast and get wasted on the cheap stuff.” All You Need Is Speed captures that feeling perfectly.”

23 | The Buckleys | Breathe

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Australian three-piece The Buckleys have just released their second worldwide single Breathe. The emotionally vulnerable ballad hopes to help people connect and find hope in our current times. “Breathe is our musical prayer to the world,” explains The Buckleys singer Sarah. “I wrote this last year at the time when our country was experiencing horrific bushfires. It’s a message of strength, vulnerability, hurt, hope and moving forward. I find myself remembering these lyrics in moments where I just need to stop, close my eyes, listen to the sounds of world around me and just breathe.”

24 | Timmy Trumpet & Florian Picasso | Armageddon

THE PRESS RELEASE: “In a beautiful cohesion of dreamy indie pop melodies and old school dance anthem sensibilities, Timmy Trumpet and Florian Picasso come together for the lovestruck collaboration Armageddon. The track came into fruition about a year ago, when Timmy and Florian realized they needed to collaborate. Florian sent over an initial sketch for the track to Timmy, who flipped the main hook into his own inimitable style. The rare talent Josh Cumbee, who has voiced tracks by Armin van Buuren, Fedde Le Grand and Zonderling to name a few, was then brought in to sing the topline. With a few final tweaks and a special radio-friendly Chill Mix by Timmy, Armageddon was complete. In keeping with the trend of rising BPMs in big room dance music, Armageddon pumps at a frenzied tempo. Shimmering, filtered arpeggios build the mood under driving beats before it drops into a dramatic breakdown. Sweet, yearning vocals from Josh Cumbee add a euphoric edge as theatrical FX and big ‘80s-style snares build things up. The drop ushers in a buzzing wave of emotions, emitting a timeless, nostalgic feel, refined with a modern touch.”

25 | Sammy Johnson | Amazing

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Australian native, New Zealand-bred soul singer Sammy Johnson has released his new single Amazing. On his new single, Sammy charms fans with a silky smooth vocal performance and incredible falsetto to stir the feelings of even of the most stone-cold listeners. “The song Amazing is an ode to old school ’90s R&B and soul. I feel so blessed to have grown up in an era where vocals, harmonies, and vocal arrangements were everything. I remember the feeling of hearing K-Ci & JoJo’s soulful ballads and Mary J. Blige’s raw emotions in her vocals, it’s just not done like that anymore,” commented Sammy Johnson. “I’ve always wanted to just go all the way there and what better time than now, where the world is feeling so much and is at a complete standstill. I pray that Amazing makes you feel something and gives you an escape from this crazy time.”

26 | Barely Passable | All I Have

THE PRESS RELEASE: “The first release from Barely Passable, All I Have showcases the electro-pop duo’s infectious melody and song-writing prowess. Based in Australia, the duo fuse various genres to create a unique mix of old and new — melding ’70s disco, ’80s new wave and modern French pop. Barley Passable say: “All I Have, as our first release perfectly captures Barley Passable’s message and image. It is a darker track with a powerful reminder that one’s own mind is the strongest tool we have, and resonates with us a representation of an anxious mind. Just how the mind goes through periods of darkness and light, the song both lyrically and sonically forms a similar journey of cloudiness in the verse, to a feeling of openness and release in the chorus. All I Have’s message is portrayed by following a story that takes place in a single instance; the moment following a glance of a new love and the turmoil that comes with it in the mind of a hopeless romantic.”

27 | Dyatlove | Empty Lungs

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Vancouver’s Dyatlove are sharing the next single Empty Lungs off their forthcoming debut self-titled EP due out May 29. The track was the first song vocalist/guitarist Sam Caviglia and guitarist Rikki Jennings-Buford wrote together and what they felt the band was going to sound like moving forward. “I feel like it is classically the heaviest song on the EP with the the least amount of lyrics. At the time we really wanted the drone and doom to be the appealing factor and initially thought of having no lyrics on it at all. As we starting jamming it more we realized we are going to be a band with vocals and we should embrace Sam’s talents rather than dismiss them just because.” adds Rikki Jennings-Buford.”

28 | Das Mörtal | Wicked Desires

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Synthwave producer Das Mörtal has released his single Wicked Desires. Das Mörtal displays a talent for creating twisted love songs with cascading sound effects. Wicked Desires entreats his fans to view a new side of his music production skills as the producer plays with dark themes without allowing them to overpower the single. A much-needed lightness is brought to the track with delicate electronic embellishments which are scattered across the waves of sound, only serving to highlight the strange, harsh string effects that occasionally occur. The producer reveals a little more about what went into making the single, “Wicked Desires is a cursed love song using the haunting sounds of old string machines. The more modern electro groove mixed with it’s ’70s synthesizer pads is the perfect backdrop for any young witch ritual.”

29 | Az Izz | Nunya

THE PRESS RELEASE:Brick City rapper and producer Az Izz of the legendary Outsidaz crew is on the comeback trail with his new album Dopeliss releasing on July 3. Following on from last month’s Gettin’ It, new single Nunya has been released today. Produced by another Newark native Qua Z Mo, it’s a fuel injected electro banger powered by heavy 808 kicks with Az on the front foot from the outset. Packing the verbal artillery, targets are placed in the sights and gauntlets thrown down through a series of combative rhymes and punchline bars “Ya whole career is a publicity stunt, how you black, ain’t kick a rap about your history once.” Stoking the fires, pure heat for the streets.”

30 | Oxen | Dark and Depressive

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Indie-rock duo Oxen have released their next single, Dark and Depressive. Childhood friends who were destined to go on to create Oxen, Erik and Stefan grew up in Dalarna, Sweden. Within this small town, they would meet their first loves, share their first beer and start playing instruments. While they are currently living separately but both based in Stockholm, the two originally started out sharing a small one-bedroom flat, together with Erik’s girlfriend. Of the concept behind Dark and Depressive, Oxen tell us: “This time we had an idea that we wanted not to only write a bunch of songs and put them together, but to actually have some sort of vision of what kind of album we wanted to make and what it should sound like. We have older brothers that forced us to listen to a ton of music from the 80s and 90s when we were kids. I remember writing this intro, wanting it to sound a bit like something you could’ve written in high school, cause I guess it was somewhere around that time both of us really got introduced to this kind of music. Even though you get different kinds of inspiration every day, I think we always found our way back to the alternative sound of the ’80s and ’90s. That’s definitely true for this song but also for the whole album.”

31 | Binny | Retrograde

THE PRESS RELEASE:Binny is the moniker of Maryland-born and bred musician Brian Lim. Binny derives from the Vietnamese name, Trị Bình, which means peace. Having sung before he could even talk, Binny’s musicality runs deep in his veins. Growing up in a family of musicians, the artist learnt piano from the early age of six, before self-teaching the guitar and eventually onto songwriting. Leading single Retrograde details yearning to be with someone you shouldn’t and trying to fight the lure and temptations. Binny confides, “I’ve definitely experienced being infatuated with someone that may not be the best influence on me, but I’d risk it all to put them first. It’s inspired by the unexplainable reasons one may continue a relationship that’s toxic.”

32 | All Things Blue | Chad

THE PRESS RELEASE: “L.A. dream-punk band All Things Blue are sharing new single Chad. Led by frontwoman India Coombs (or simply, Blue) and collaborator Jon Joseph, All Things Blue traverse genres and sounds; one moment flirting with abrasive garage-punk, the next – soaring psych-pop – with Chad sitting somewhere between the spirited psychedelia of Melody’s Echo Chamber and the exhilarating alt-pop of St Vincent. Speaking about the track, singer India said: “See-saws are fun until you’re riding an emotional see-saw; when you want someone that doesn’t want you, but makes sure to keep you around. Sometimes you only realise in retrospect; that person was just a Chad. Also during the whole vocal take I was holding Jon’s week old baby boy which is why I laugh at the end cause he fell asleep.”

33 | Dan Michaelson | Colourfield Prelude

THE PRESS RELEASE:Dan Michaelson has announced the release of his new album Colourfield, out on July 24. Colourfield Prelude is Dan’s first instrumental release. Sharing some common ground with Spiritualized, John Luther Adams, Gavin Bryars and Mogwai, Prelude employs cavernous saxophone drones, distorted reverbs and orchestral sweeps to create a slowly unfolding sound mass, exposing an introduction to Colourfield at its core. On making the decision to step back from singing and lyric writing, the thinking was simple, “everyone gets tired of the sound of their own voice sometimes…”

34 | New River Beach | The Right Place

THE PRESS RELEASE: “We have been playing music, separately, for years. Two children later, we finally started making music together. We formed the Toronto-based duo New River Beach in January 2020. We recorded The Right Place in our home studio in the evenings after our kids went to sleep. New River Beach is a place near Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada — Marney’s home town. We’ve been reflecting on the concept of well-being and its connection to place. From playing a warm Juno, to a washed-out trumpet and bass guitar, the act of playing together, especially during these isolated and uncertain times, became a place of its own.”

35 | Lucas Nord | No One Even Knows My Name

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Award-winning producer Lucas Nord has released his latest single, No One Even Knows My Name (Ft. Husky). Taking a step away from the serious lyrical writing, Lucas Nord and Husky present their funky and self-reflective track. The two musicians tell the tale about an industry party that inspired the single. Husky: “I had such high hopes for that night, but when I got there I realized nobody gave a shit about me haha. So this song is really about walking into a room with high expectations and going home disappointed.” Nord completes, “I think we’ve all felt small like that at some point in our life, whether that’s meeting a bunch of successful people who have no clue who you are or if it’s just the feeling of being unnoticed and lonely in general. I like how it’s still got some hope in it though.”

36 | Chuck Prophet | Willie and Nilli

THE PRESS RELEASE:Chuck Prophet shares Willie and Nilli, the newest single from his forthcoming album, The Land That Time Forgot, set for an Aug. 21 release. Described as a “21st Century Exorcism” from Silicon Valley to the White House by the San Francisco native, The Land That Time Forgot was originally inspired by the never-ending gentrification he has witnessed in his hometown. “America 2.0. The Tenderloin, the TL, the Loin, take your pick,” says Prophet. “The blighted inner-city nowhere. Here are your kids next door. Beautiful losers, yeah. But there’s a tenderness. With choruses! Sonically it’s rain on a conga drum all the way. With an electric e-bow guitar by James DePrato weaving in and out. An e-bow straight out of Bowie’s Heroes. Jim Goldberg’s black-and-white vérité cover image of the LP brings it home. Settling in for a night of Chinese food, cheap vodka and Metallica on a homemade stereo. It’s a kind of seduction, a prayer even. It’s the best and the worst of times in three verses. With the thumb on the scale leaning toward the best of times. Everyone was young once. Even my folks who incidentally are on the back of the LP cover in my Dad’s Chevy rhymes with levee were young once.”

37 | Al1ce | For Dead

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Los Angeles,CA based alternative rock artists Al1ce release their new song For Dead. For Dead was written while they sequestered themselves in the desert of Joshua Tree, CA at the beginning of the year. After experiencing various forms of loss within the band and having to face mortality, they found themselves drawn to the concepts of death, the tree of life, freedom, and the different shackles of enslavement that we as humans can experience in its various forms during a lifetime. After spending a week in the desert Al1ce had put together the base for their new album As Above So Below, with For Dead as the first single. As Above So Below will be released later this year. The artwork for the song was created by Brittany Bindrim of the band I:Scintilla, which captures yin-yang quality of the upcoming album.”

38 | The Lo-Fi’s | Mindsweeper

THE PRESS RELEASE: “It started out as a way to feel less alone in the face of an isolating world epidemic, but the COVID Compilation has bloomed into something much bigger and much more beautiful. Created by executive producers Justin Viant of The Lo-Fi’s with Jeremy Delaney of Kaleidoscope Sound, what was originally planned to be an eight-song album, featuring emerging New Jersey and New York-based artists soon became 18. “We hope that the joy we had making this album is translated to listeners, allowing them to tune out the dilemma we’re all facing right now and that each artist’s musical persona keeps listeners on the edge of their seats wanting more,” says Delaney. “We decided to do this album because this is what we do,” adds Viant. “We want to dedicate it to loved ones and workers on the frontline. And a special shout out to Pedro, our drummer, who lost his grandfather to the Coronavirus. We hope we help shine a light on everyone’s day with this album.”

39 | Peach Luffe | Fairytale

THE PRESS RELEASE:Peach Luffe draws influence from both popular and underground music like guitar playing from John Mayer and Mac Demarco, singing from Allen Stone and recent R&B, and melodies from early Coldplay. Some describe their genre as Bedroom-Pop Alternative, but even that is a misnomer. “Fairytale is about being afraid of being happy. The chorus, ‘Fairytales, Sunshine, Moonlight and Paradise’ all represent things that are happy and sad at the same time. The verse represents a relationship that’s perfectly fine but from my perspective, it’s failing. In reality, I’m just creating problems in the relationship that doesn’t even exist because I don’t allow myself to be happy.”

40 | Down Again | Actions and Their Consequences

THE PRESS RELEASE: “California Bay Area emo/post hardcore group Down Again mark their introduction to the world with the release of their emotionally gripping and hard-hitting single Actions and their Consequences. The first preview of music from the trio to be included on their debut album The Devil Is A Gentlemen, which is set for an early Summer release. Actions is a deeply personal song that vocalist/guitarist Lenny Costa penned about the ones closest to him spiraling out of control during his youth. “Watching my father, brother and best friend all walk away from their faith while dealing with cases of substance abuse and homelessness took a toll on me,” said Costa. “As someone who has experienced the fragile moments with my own faith, I hoped there was no god and heaven because I would have rather it been fake than me going to heaven without them.”

41 | Loud Forest | Costa Rica

THE PRESS RELEASE:Bernard and Rachel Chadwick are the husband-and-wife duo that create pop/rock music imbued with love and artisanship. Theirs is an enviable creative relationship built around making more of themselves and the world through collaboration. Costa Rica is a story about the moment Bernard and Rachel met and how they instantly connected to something magical happening in the universe. Bernard shares, “I was in the jungle digging some stairs down to a waterfall, then up walks this cute 17-year-old girl in ripped-up jeans out of nowhere. She was there to visit for a couple of days, she sang and played guitar (Blackbird by The Beatles). It obviously made an impression on me.”

42 | James Humphrys | Colour

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Bristol songwriter and multi-instrumentalist James Humphrys unveils his new single Colour, the first to be taken from his forthcoming second EP Memory Palace. Colour was written at sea off the coast of Alaska while James was working as a musician on a cruise ship, as he explains “Colour explores the themes and thoughts surrounding that uncomfortable feeling you get when you’re in a group and you see a close friend putting on a false persona through the colour of their words. You can see through the mask because you know them so well and you can’t understand why they do it.”.