Indie Roundup (Wee Rant Edition) | 14 Songs For Your Semi-Holiday Monday

Khruangbin, Zebediah Crowe, Matt Lovell and more get the week started right.

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Khruangbin try to remember, Zebediah Crowe get your goat, Matt Lovell has trouble, Brontë Fall rides high and more in today’s Roundup. Now, if you’ll permit me a wee rant: Since I am hardly a technically perfect writer, I try to resist grammar policing others. Glass houses and all, you know? But even I have my limits: I am officially fed up with receiving, reading and rewriting press releases that announce some band “is releasing their video.” Sigh. Come on, people; this is grade-school stuff. Either THEY ARE releasing THEIR video, or IT IS releasing ITS video. Pick one and stick with it! Phew. Glad I got that off my chest. Thanks. I now return you to your regularly scheduled programming:


1 | Khruangbin | So We Won’t Forget

THE PRESS RELEASE:Khruangbin — the trio of Laura Lee Ochoa (bass), Mark Speer (guitar), and Donald “DJ” Johnson (drums) — release new single, So We Won’t Forget, a track from their forthcoming album, Mordechai, out June 26. In conjunction with today’s announcement, the band also share the new single’s accompanying video, directed by Scott Dungate and co-produced by Wieden+Kennedy Tokyo x Nakama. The lilting So We Won’t Forget finds Ochoa filling her apartment with memories she’s scrawled on Post-Its to prevent them slipping away. “Memory is a powerful thing,” says Khruangbin. “Now more than ever it’s important to tell the people you love that you love them, so that they don’t forget.”


2 | Zebediah Crowe | The Neon Goat of Crimson Grief

THE PRESS RELEASE: “The silence has been long, the wait interminable, but at long last patience is rewarded and Zebadiah Crowe are returned from the black. Armed with a new album, Host Rider, their first in over eight years, the demons of darkness are back with their inimitable blend of violent thrash, chilling black metal and belligerent devil-may-care attitude. Swathed in blood and crowned with filth, the resurrected Zebadiah Crowe are madder, badder and far more dangerous to know. Host Rider consists of seven songs which retain the very faintest of grasps on sanity. Mainlining aggression and tripping on the screams of the eternally lost, these hymns to the old gods, the broken and demented once deities, are absolutely single-minded in their vicious attack. A cold mechanistic core powers the maelstrom of chaos that surrounds it, a whirlwind of knives that pares soul from flesh and flesh from bone. The level of savagery displayed throughout Host Rider should come as no surprise though; lest we forget, Zebadiah Crowe have strode the highways with Vader, Grave, Gorgoroth, Anaal Nathrakh and Marduk … they have earned their scars and taken them from the best. Now, with bestial battle cries like A Tincture Of Malice and Mantel Of Nails And Orphan Skin they have an album that stands proud next to their infernal teachers. Host Rider will walk the fields of conflict, crunching bones beneath its feet.”


3 | Matt Lovell | Trouble

THE PRESS RELEASE:Matt Lovell shares the video for Trouble, an unreleased track from his forthcoming debut LP Nobody Cries Today. In the video, Matt is accompanied by a character that represents his trouble(s)… at first, it’s unclear if the character is friend or foe, but we quickly find out that this “Trouble Monster” is here to help him learn a thing or two about how to roll with the punches and have a little fun amid life’s ups and downs. Matt knows a lot about life’s difficulties: In January 2017, right after he finished recording the album, he was carjacked, shot point-blank in the chest, and left for dead. He was miraculously rescued by a nearby stranger who happened to be an EMT and spent the next two years recovering from his injuries — physical wounds and a major bout of PTSD. He’s learned to cope with the trauma, but he deals with the resulting issues every single day.”


4 | Brontë Fall | Freeway High

THE PRESS RELEASE:Brontë Fall, the songwriting pen name of classically trained multi-instrumentalist Teri Bracken, embodies the spirit a centuries-old push by the Brontë sisters to have their — and all women’s — voices heard. Within her sophomore effort, Finishing School, Bracken embraces Charlotte, Emily, and Anne’s fight against the ever-evolving societal restraint on women; at times with a sword and armor and at times with words and ideas. Available everywhere Aug. 21, Finishing School features six songs that find Bracken growing beyond her roots in orchestral music with a broadening of influences and cross-genre songwriting. Today, she premiered the first single from Finishing School. Freeway High draws the line between Bracken’s pop and rock influences, spurred from a surprise rental car upgrade and a trip through Connecticut countryside. “The feel of the sun on my face and my hair whipping in the wind — it put me right back to the summer after 4th grade, in the back of my best friend’s red convertible on the way to the pool,” recalls Bracken. “It was such a liberating few hours for me. I needed that time to relax and breathe. I believe that my repertoire needed a song of letting go as well. I don’t have enough of them.”


5 | Weigh The Anchor | Medicate

THE PRESS RELEASE:Weigh the Anchor release the video for new single Medicate. It was produced by band member Andrew Zamora (vocals) and reflects the ever-changing experiences of life. Andrew explains, “the visuals for Medicate are meant to portray how the reality before our eyes flashes without even knowing it. Each scene is different and changing just as our experiences of life do.” The visual production ties together the significance of the single. Drummer Brendan Lennard comments, “Medicate has come to be a very emotional song and part of our music writing career. Writing from the heart and about personal experiences doesn’t always come easy but as a band, the people listening deserve to know who we are inside and out. The song symbolizes the struggle of back and forth complications in a world that’s forever changing.”


6 | The Crowned | Creed

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Texas Metal outfit The Crowned recently released Creed, a pummeling new single and video. The Crowned recently returned from the Hell Has No Mercy tour with The 69 Eyes and Wednesday 13, where the band performed the song live every night to overwhelming response, making it an obvious choice for the next single. Says drummer/vocalist Marc Coronado, “Being out with Wednesday 13 and The 69 Eyes across the U.S., playing this song every night, the crowd loved it, and we knew we had to get home and record it. So, that’s what we did. Obviously, We’re a live band, and we’d love to be out touring, but the COVID 19 situation, made us, like everyone else, rethink our plans, and it seemed like a great time to release some new music.”


7 | Bedsore | The Gate, Closure (Sarcoptes Obitus)

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Before Rome, Italy-based death metal outfit Bedsore present their debut LP Hypnagogic Hallucinations, they offer the first preview of the album’s putrid ways: The lead single The Gate, Closure (Sarcoptes Obitus). Hypnagogic Hallucinations is a fitting title for the dark lucid dreamscapes and obscure fantasia Bedsore deliver on their debut. Like an Argento film, the Roman band paints the canvas of death metal in vivid bright washes of ornamented color and stabs of inventive horror that belies the corporeal grotesquery of the band’s name. Probing into the brain through psychedelic digression and winding hypnotic prog a protean world of weird organic contours and mysterious meaning take shape.”


8 | Rising Appalachia | Resilient Remix

THE PRESS RELEASE: “As with so many of our songs, the message of Resilient has taken on a new poignancy in this time of disruption, isolation, and uncertainty,” says David Brown, bassist and baritone guitar player for the global folk band Rising Appalachia, about the remixed version of Resilient. The music matches the mood of the times while the lyrics remain planted in hope, deepening the notion that music — Rising Appalachia’s in particular — can be both timeless and timely. This single comes on the heels of the band’s Earth Day release Stand Like An Oak, an intimate track encouraging listeners to “put away your cares” and “fold up your fears”; to “stand like an oak” in the face of trying times — which featured soft harmonies and a focused message of support.”


9 | Evicshen | Under The Stall Door

THE PRESS RELEASE:Victoria Shen (AKA Evicshen) is an experimental sound artist who has worked with electronics for over a decade. Her practice blurs the lines between sound, visual, and tactile art. Shen originally got her feet wet working for Jessica Rylan (a student and former employee of Don Buchla) at Flower Electronics, creating patchable analog synthesizers. She cultivated a fluency with electronics, which in conjunction with her expansive interests in the arts and sciences, challenges a conventional means to “make music.” This sensitivity is maintained in her debut LP Hair Birth. Hair Birth is the result of several weekends locked in a studio creating cacophonous, wondrous synth noise with Harvard’s Buchla 100 and Serge modular systems. She tracked hours of stems before cloistering herself in a painstaking editing process. Songs like Under The Stall Door sound like a cybernetic rollercoaster with rumbles and shrieks that hurtle the listener through virtual space.”


10 | Natalie Schlabs | See What I See

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Natalie has one of those beautiful, crystalline voices — pure, ethereal, and nothing short of angelic. Swoon. The tracks on Don’t Look Too Close live in that tension between the beauty and heartbreak surrounding our closest relationships. The songs were written when she was pregnant with her first child, which caused a lot of reflection on her own upbringing and how she wanted to raise her baby. The title Don’t Look Too Close came from the idea that “he’s going to see all the worst of me, be hurt by the worst of me, as much as I don’t want him to, and, as much as I want to be the best for him.”


11 | Galaxians | Heartbreaker

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Leeds-based disco-funk trio Galaxians have shared the new single Heartbreaker, taken from their upcoming second album Chemical Reaction, due for release on June 26. With their polished yet primitive high-energy pop potion, fuelled by “too much coffee and too many donuts,” Matt Woodward (drums), Jed Skinner (synths) and Emma Mason (vocals) bring a human touch to electronic music with live drums, earth-shaking vocals and gold-plated grooves, recalling the likes of Roisin Murphy, Hercules & Love Affair, Lynda Dawn and Sink Ya Teeth. Soaring new cut Heartbreaker champions female empowerment and personal freedom, whilst drawing drew inspiration from bona fide divas like Grace Jones, Aretha Franklin, Diana Ross and “even Prince and his delicious feminine energy.” states Emma. “It’s particularly special to me as the lyrics personify female liberation, that we can dance to the rhythm of our own drum and become our own saviours. I literally feel free when I listen to that track and I want others to feel the same.”


12 | Rijell | Mesmerized

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Electronic pop artist Rijell has released his latest single, Mesmerized. Rijell was born and raised in Montreal, Canada where he can still be found to this day. Having a mother who was fascinated by music meant that he was introduced to it, in many shapes and forms, from a young age. Taking this passion on himself, Rijell considers himself a “DIY artist” as he plays his own instruments, writes and sings his own lyrics, produces the instrumentals as well as mixing and mastering his tracks. Speaking of the inspiration behind Mesmerized, Rijell tells us, “In the midst of a romance, two people are experiencing unique vibes together. And by realizing how real and sincere it could be, a confession is taking place between both of them.”


13 | Hayley Ross | Come Back (feat. N-JOI)

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Following the release of her acclaimed debut The Weight of Hope earlier this year, Hayley Ross is very pleased to unveil a brand new EP Come Back: The Remixes. Working around the Brighton songwriter’s transcendent vocal and distinctly dreamy style, the EP showcases five radical transformations of the original track, with a euphoric remix by ’90s House icons N-JOI being the first to be revealed. Taking time out of recording their new album, N-JOI give Hayley’s cut the full anthem treatment.”


14 | Aliens | Enjoy Killing Time

THE PRESS RELEASE:Enjoy Killing Time features Aliens frontman Blake Sandberg on guitar and vocals and special guest drummer Hunt Sales. The two recorded this song at the end of the sessions for Aliens’ debut album, Head First. Blake decided to hold off release of this song because it felt different. “Now the timing seems right in this moment to release it today. With everyone wondering what will happen, and with so much uncertainty,” Blake said, “this song is strangely appropriate today as we are all searching for answers — a cure, a paycheck, a friend, some kind of relief.”