Indie Roundup | 33 Numbers For An Eclectic Wednesday

Fast Friends, Delta Spirit, Lawrence Arms & more help up your Wednesday game.

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Fast Friends aren’t afraid to make enemies, Delta Spirit are all ’bout it, Busty & The Bass bring the love with Macy Gray, Lawrence Arms share their last words, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu and Steve Aoki go Ninja Re Bang Bang all over again — whatever the hell that means — and more in a diverse Midweek Roundup. Quick question: Does anyone anywhere actually give two shits who mastered somebody’s album?

 


PICKS OF THE DAY

1 | Fast Friends | Fuck Ohio

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Los Angeles trio Fast Friends release Fuck Ohio, the latest single off their self-produced debut EP HI T LO IQ, to be released on July 10. It comes with a deepfake video performed by Donald Trump. Says Fast Friends about the inspiration for Fuck Ohio, “We were incredibly close to just releasing the original voice memo of this song. We wrote it in 10 minutes and were like, ‘OK, welp, that happened, now let’s write a real song.’ Somewhere along the way Fuck Ohio became a real song. It’s about everything and everybody and also about nothing and nobody. The line can sometimes be razor thin.”


2 | Delta Spirit | How Bout It

THE PRESS RELEASE:Delta Spirit are set to return with their first album in six years, What Is There, on Sept. 11. The 10-song set was produced by the band and mixed by Tchad Blake (U2, Black Keys). Today, they share the video for the first single, How Bout It. The powerful, cinematic video was directed by Michael Parks Randa and shot during the Covid-19 pandemic at over 30 locations throughout North America. After speaking with roughly 70 cinematographers to learn about their particular circumstances, Randa directed 30 individuals across the country to safely document an intimate portrait of Americans in isolation. Randa said “The result is a celebration of the collaborative spirit of filmmaking, a successful experiment in safely navigating production during the pandemic, and a mosaic of America during this time.”


3 | Busty & The Bass | Out Of Love ft. Macy Gray

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Canadian-American 8-piece collective Busty and the Bass release Out of Love, featuring R&B and soul legend Macy Gray, with a psychedelic animated video to accompany the single. The saccharine lyrics outline the raw end of a relationship, in which Gray’s vocals shine alongside the ensemble. The collaboration was years in the making as the octet rose to international acclaim for their 2016 cover of Gray’s hit I Try. Out of Love will be included on the band’s forthcoming album out this year. Details to come.”


4 | The Lawrence Arms | Last Last Words

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Chicago-bred trio The Lawrence Arms share Last Last Words off their forthcoming record Skeleton Coast out July 17. The track “is about coming to terms with your own obscurity – but like, in a pretty upbeat way,” says vocalist and guitarist Chris McCaughan. “It’s an escape dream to an edge of the world while being strangely content with some undergrown adulthood. It’s part undercover love song to the sometimes beautiful randomness of the universe and part offbeat, comical reminder to keep rewriting your unknown future. Like so much of the record, the song chases tiny flashes of light in the darkness.”


5 | Kyary Pamyu Pamyu | Ninja Re Bang Bang (Steve Aoki Remix)

THE PRESS RELEASE: “To coincide with the release of the video game Ninjala, Steve Aoki provides an official remix of Kyary Pamyu Pamyu’s chart-topping Japanese track Ninja Re Bang Bang. Aoki masterfully flips the track into a heart-racing earworm, transporting listeners directly into the highspeed world of gaming. “I released Ninja Re Bang Bang seven years ago, and now, world-renowned DJ Steve Aoki has done a remix! I am thrilled to share my music with everyone around the world via Ninjala. The remix will also air on Ninjala‘s commercials and cartoon animation, so please look out for it!”


ALSO ON THE PLAYLIST

6 | Jónsi | Swill

THE PRESS RELEASE:Jónsi Birgisson, multidisciplinary artist and frontman of Sigur Rós, proudly announces Shiver, his first solo album in a decade, out Oct. 2. The new album features acclaimed vocalists Liz Fraser of Cocteau Twins and Robyn, as well as production by A. G. Cook. A new song from the record, Swill is released today alongside a video by Barnaby Roper, animated by Pandagunda. Shiver plumbs the depths of the human experience and our connection to the natural world. It pits the organic and dreamlike qualities of Jónsi against Cook’s synthetic, sometimes abrasive, and avant-garde experimentalism. On paper, their collaboration is surprising, but Shiver only continues Jónsi’s quest to push the boundaries of not just what we consider art, but how we experience it.”


7 | I Like Trains | Dig In

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Leeds trailblazers I Like Trains continue their expository musical diatribe against the powers that be in their new single Dig In, the second salient offering from their forthcoming hard-hitting Kompromat album, slated for release on Aug. 21. Their fourth studio album deals with the thorny subject of information; how we consume it, how we process it and how our personal data can be used for political and financial gain. Dig In sees the band turn their ire towards the campaign managers and ‘special advisors’ who manoeuvre their people into positions of power. “This one is for those morally bankrupt schemers who have managed to leverage extraordinary power and wealth while never being on the ballot,” says vocalist David Martin.”


8 | The Range x Tourist | Last

THE PRESS RELEASE: “​The Range​ & Tourist are teaming up for Last, a bittersweet electronic track built around a chopped-up, processed vocal line. ​​Last​ shows off both artist’s ability to blend warm sounds with pulsing electronics and sampled live instruments to create deeply textural, subtly euphoric music. ​“I think this song is a wonderful combination of Will‘s and my individual music,” explains James Hinton aka The Range. “I have fond memories of the day we made this one, as it was a beautiful day in London. This song captures an ephemeral sense of longing and transportation to me, particularly now for me as it feels like a totally different world from when Will and I wrote this song. In any case it’s an important song for both of us and we hope that feeling rings true to anyone listening.”


9 | Lou Canon | Invisible Desire

THE PRESS RELEASE: “The latest single from Lou Canon is Invisible Desire, released in anticipation of her upcoming album Audomatic Body, out July 10. Lou explains, “This song is about pushing higher, going further, moving deeper. And engaging with the world in a sensual way. There is a passage by James Baldwin that encapsulates this sentiment, ‘To be sensual, I think, is to respect and rejoice in the force of life, of life itself, and to be present in all that one does, from the effort of loving to the making of bread.’ ”


10 | Astari Nite | Leave the Winter on the Ground

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Miami, Florida-Goth Rock/Post-Punk artists Astari Nite release the music video for their song Leave the Winter on the Ground, from their new album Here Lies, which was released in May. The music video pays tribute to those who inspired or supported them along their journey. Vocalist Mychael explains what inspired the song itself. “I cannot deny the fact that clenching onto misery fascinates me. I mean, to catch a feeling through the air and allow it to play the strings of my heart continuously, has its own way of sharing a bit of comfort deep inside. Perhaps it is a form of selfish isolation, I like to think of it as an easier way to smile.”


11 | Deeper Graves | Leave This World

THE PRESS RELEASE: “As Deeper Graves — the new solo project of Jeff Wilson (Chrome Waves, ex-Nachtmystium) — prepares to release the Open Roads debut album in early July, he premieres a new visualizer for the latest single, Leave This World. Wilson writes of the new song, “This video was pieced together to coincide with the lyrics for the song and art for the album. Leave This World is about being stressed over the general population, depression, anxiety, social media, and over-stimulation, the pressures of working paycheck to paycheck, and the want and need to just give in, pack up and start over, or to simply clock out. I think I can safely say that we’ve all been there one way or another and hope this somehow speaks to everyone who’s struggled with it.”


12 | ZaeHD & CEO | Special Delivery

THE PRESS RELEASE:ZaeHD & CEO release Special Delivery, the first track off their forthcoming EP Global Warning, out July 1. ZaeHD & CEO explain: “We’ve come a long way since our first project, but we’re still only just getting started. Global Warning is just another example of what we have to offer. Only hits. This is us warming up and warning the world to get used to seeing and hearing about us.”


13 | Krief | I Am the Pillar of Darkness In Your Life

THE PRESS RELEASE:Patrick Krief announces details of his new album Chemical Trance and shares the first track and video I Am The Pillar of Darkness in Your Life. Chemical Trance is set for release Aug. 14. Album opener I Am The Pillar of Darkness in Your Life plays like Dante’s Virgil guiding the listener through the first circle of hell, in this case representing Krief’s own crippling anxiety. Speaking on the track Krief says “I thought about this path I ended up on, in which I gathered the very basics to stay the course and survive. I was sold a dream, but it wasn’t my dream. I thought about how in my darkest hours I found myself surrounded by the exact same type of person. This song is about confronting your own demons, but it’s also about axing down the outer obstacles.”


14 | Keaton Henson | Ontario

THE PRESS RELEASE:Keaton Henson is pleased to share another new single, Ontario, streaming now alongside a video. Ontario is a song about recovery, acceptance and finding sanctuary on foreign soil, it is a heartfelt portrait of a place where Keaton found much needed solace and calm. Sonically, it is both icy cold and warm and cosy, the electronic snowstorms flurrying around the familiar and nostalgic central toy Casio sample, and the supportive, playful bass groove carrying you through a landscape of snow, suburban houses and long, quiet roads. Keaton on Ontario: “I have found great solace in the icy winds of Canada. Where, upon opening the door in the morning, the instant freezing of your skin takes any lingering sleeplessness and unreason from you, making you move forward, no matter what else is going on. It is an ode to that landscape, and a portrait of a place I find beautiful, albeit strange.”


15 | Trial | Eyes Against Infinite Suppression

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Newly formed dystopian U.K. trash duo Trial present the band’s first video, created for the ominous Eyes Against Infinite Suppression. The video makes its public inauguration as the band’s maiden recorded output, the 1 EP, zeros in on its July release. 1 is a willful, monolithic statement of ongoing intent: five short, destructive bursts, forged from the stinging, acrid, particulate storms that batter their plane of existence. The band offers, “In a dream, we awoke to desolation and desecration, both of the spirit and of the land, caused by short term advances for greed, attained by use of the blunt, outmoded, instruments available to them. In the cold light of the pre-dawn hours, everything we had known and loved seemed to have been taken away from us. But from some other place we felt a stirring, and a sense of unity: we knew that what had been lost created a lack of defense for the enemy, for the architects of our new reality. That what had been lost in our eyes signified something else: a much larger, much worse catastrophe for them. A collapse of a superstructure upon which they were reliant. Upon this awareness we bonded and offered prayers, and rather than looking inward, and back, we pushed forward.”


16 | Kelly Lee Owens | On

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Techno producer/musician Kelly Lee Owens unveils a new single/video, On, from her forthcoming album, Inner Song, out Aug. 28. It’s the alpha and omega of the Kelly Lee Owens experience, reflective of her ability to contain sonic and emotional multitudes within just one song. Shot on the Norwegian coastline, its accompanying video sees Kelly collaborating once again with Kasper Häggström. Like the song, it tells the story of a breakup. “This is perhaps the most intimate and personal song I’ve written so far — the two halves of the track reflect upon sad acceptances of the truth and then the joyous aftermath of liberation that can come from that,” says Owens. “This can definitely be heard in the production and arrangement of the track — the first half sonically connecting to the inner revelations and the second half, the liberation in action, the forward motion.”


17 | Ailbhe Reddy | Time Difference

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Written on the precipice of a break-up, Time Difference captures a moment of realisation as two lovers find their lives veering in opposite directions. Personal and poignant, the track was written as Ailbhe Reddy began to embrace the out-of-hours lifestyle demanded of a touring musician. Alone in her hotel room after a show in Glasgow, the disparity between the city’s bustling nightlife with her own isolation seemed to echo the vacillating feelings of loneliness and excitement she felt at that time in her life. Pausing in a moment of reflection and realisation, Time Difference fell into place there and then. “The lyrics are dealing with how it feels to make something work long distance while living on a very different schedule to my girlfriend back home.” says Ailbhe. “But it also reaches back to other times in other relationships where I couldn’t make things work because of the same issues, there was always something in the way, be it physical distance or timing.”


18 | Tru Trilla | Real Rap ft. Prince Ak

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Brick City’s lyrical marksman Tru Trilla releases his new video Real Rap, featuring fellow 050 Boyz group member Prince Ak. Real Rap is taken from his album God of Barz, released on May 29. Filmed in downtown Newark just before the turn of the year, the pair trade verses over a hard edged gritty beat produced by Barcelona’s Sumerio Square. Set on a verbal warpath, the seasoned veterans deliver punchline salvos of hard bars against weak representations and pale imitations in equal measure, dismantling defenses with the ease of prize fighters earning stripes for their home State. Some spicy heat for the street.”


19 | Deradoorian | Corsican Shores

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Can you remember when you were younger yearning to feel just anything?” Deradoorian contemplates on her latest single Corsican Shores over a driving back beat. “The song is about a woman truly focusing on herself for the first time,” Deradoorian explains. “No relationship, no help, just unknown territory. A song about feeling more comfortable in my darkness than whatever joy could possibly be.” Corsican Shores is the fourth track Deradoorian has released from her upcoming album Find The Sun, coming out Sept. 18.”


20 | Little Kid | I Thought That You’d Been Raptured

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto’s Little Kid are already beginning to find international critical regard ahead of their first full length. Led by songwriter Kenny Boothby, the band have taken the next step with their forthcoming album Transfiguration Highway. A major element of Boothby’s songwriting is his penchant for Christian imagery. This is especially true of the roiling opener I Thought That You’d Been Raptured. “This song is one of the most purely fictional songs I’ve written.” says Boothby. “It’s essentially all built around a joke I came up with where a man comes home early from work and finds his wife’s clothes around the house, but his first thought is that she has been raptured and he has been left behind. Of course, it turns out she is sleeping with someone else in the bedroom upstairs… I’m especially happy to have found a way to showcase my stupid sense of humour a little more obviously than usual.”


21 | Steep Canyon Rangers | In The Next Life

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Since coming onto the bluegrass scene at the dawn of the millennium, Steep Canyon Rangers have been on a journey and continue to push the boundaries of the genre. Their new single, In the Next Life, finds them on an Americana path that diverges from their bluegrass origins. Produced by Brandon Bell (Zac Brown, John Prine), the Rangers continue to hone their craft with unlikely collaborators while developing a sound that is uniquely their own. The song itself is “about learning from our mistakes and moving towards brighter days.”


22 | The Fleshtones | You Gotta Love, Love

THE PRESS RELEASE:The Fleshtones have just released another track from their forthcoming album Face of the Screaming Werewolf, titled You Gotta Love, Love. Face of the Screaming Werewolf will be released on Oct. 24 at indie retailers for Record Store Day. The first edition LP arrives on limited edition purple splatter vinyl and includes a wolfman mask to help ward off evil!”


23 | She Pleasures Herself | Hungry Eyes

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Goth trailblazers She Pleasures Herself reimagine Eric Carmen’s classic Hungry Eyes, giving it the dark twist that was always lurking beneath the surface.”


24 | The Midnight | Prom Night

THE PRESS RELEASE:The Midnight share Prom Night from their new album Monsters, out July 10. Arriving at a moment when much of the Class of 2020 has been forced to cancel or socially distance their proms, Prom Night captures the hopeful naiveté and unfettered romance of this American rite of passage as it synthesizes a range of slowdance sounds that run the gamut from Peter Gabriel to The 1975.”


25 | Luka Kuplowsky | Never Get Tired (of Loving You)

THE PRESS RELEASE:Luka Kuplowsky is announcing his full-length release Stardust with the first single Never Get Tired (of Loving You). While not pining nor sugarcoating, Never Get Tired (of Loving You) is a love song, looking at love as an intrinsic component for growth, a solidarity between two people hurtling through the chaotic present. It’s not something light or easy. Rather, this love is, as Luka puts it, “a patient attuning.” Speaking to the single, Kuplowsky says, “Written in an empty apartment shortly after moving in with my partner. A sincere expression of love. A sacred love song attuned to the natural world — thunder, wind, moonlight and a dolphin.”


26 | Necrot | Asleep Forever

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Bay Area death metal/punk trio Necrot unleash Asleep Forever, the latest sampling of their long-anticipated new full-length, Mortal, set for release Aug. 28. Comments bassist/vocalist Luca Indrio of the latest single, “Asleep Forever talks about knowing that you’re going to die and about discovering and embracing that state of consciousness to find relief. In death, you will finally be allowed to leave behind all that made you suffer and all that tormented you. Everything will be just and equal at the end when we’ll be asleep forever. It’s one of our heaviest and most melodic songs so far and I’m very curious to see how our fans will receive it. It’s one of my favorites.”


27 | Romare | The River

THE PRESS RELEASE:Romare shares The River, the second single taken from his forthcoming album Home. Romare’s music has always sat comfortably in both the dance floor world and a more relaxed environment, Home being no exception. “The River is inspired by being in a big space with lots of people listening to loud music — something which can be spiritually uplifting.”


28 | Mike Casey | Get You (Take 1)

THE PRESS RELEASE:Mike Casey is a melody poet. The Brooklyn-based story-telling songwriter, producer, and sonic alchemist is a multi-talented force whose soul stirring saxophone sound and creative use of phrasing reaches out with love and embraces your musical desires, one note at a time. A long-time fan of R&B/Neo-Soul, Mike was so inspired after hearing Daniel Caesar’s 2017 Grammy-winning alt-R&B Freudian album that he decided to re-imagine his song Get You.”


29 | Names Without Numbers | This Hallmark Moment

THE PRESS RELEASE:Names Without Numbers have just made the 20th anniversary edition of their debut EP available for pre-order. Relive the glory days and listen to a band that most people had never heard of but that had enormous potential. From Names Without Numbers: “Wow! We can’t believe it’s been 20 years since we recorded this EP, back when we were just kids. Even though the lineup was a bit different back then, you can hear glimpses of where we were headed as a band. Listening to this again brings back so many memories of song and sound experimentation, best friends long-since moved away, and hours spent driving and sleeping in a stinky van. Recorded in the famous Mogis brothers’ studio in Lincoln, Nebraska before we had any business being there, it still makes us smile.”


30 | The Lagoons | Midnight Afternoon

THE PRESS RELEASE:The Lagoons, composed of brothers Ryan and Joey Selan, found music at a young age. Their love for music evolved to writing, producing, and recording all of their own music in their home studio, becoming multi-instrumentalists along the way. Their debut album Midnight Afternoon explores different sides of love; the fantasy, reality, consequences and different types. It’s about being connected while simultaneously feeling alone. It’s about the rollercoaster of thoughts and feelings that occur inside of us when we are experiencing something. It’s about dreams and realities.”


31 | Joshua Van Tassel | Eternal Turtle

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Like the instrument that inspired it, the Ondes Martenot, Joshua Van Tassel’s Dance Music: Volume 2 is elegant and expressive, the score to a movie inside your head. The Ondes Martenot is an elegantly intricate, deliberately complicated hand-built machine that lives with the theremin as one of the world’s earliest electronic instruments (c.1928). “Eternal Turtle was the first piece I recorded for Dance Music Volume 2, and features only the Ondes. I had gotten the instrument about 2 months prior, and had been practicing every day, very slowly, and trying to play in tune. It’s very similar in tuning principle to a violin, where the slightest finger turn can cause the note you’re playing to be sharp or flat. I had started to experiment with more effects pedals as well, and created the ambience you hear at the very beginning of the track almost by accident with a Chase Bliss MOOD pedal. For some reason, the sound immediately made me think of a giant, slow, and very old turtle moving slowly through and even older forest.”


32 | Jess Williamson | Pictures of Flowers ft. Hand Habits

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Last month, Jess Williamson released Sorceress, a beautiful collection of country western prayers and pop incantations through which she melds the magical with the day-to-day. Today, she presents a new single, Pictures of Flowers (ft. Hand Habits), for a new compilation series celebrating the human condition through remote connection. “Pictures of Flowers is a song that speaks to the fear and uncertainty I felt in the early days of the Quarantine, as well as the clarity gained and realignment in priorities I’ve been experiencing over the last few months. I feel like a different person today than I was in January. Initially, being forced to cancel the tour dates in support of my new album had me reflecting on how to move forward with my career. What was the point anyway? My musical ambition began to feel hollow in the face of a global pandemic. Then, when the police murdered George Floyd, these empty streets filled with protestors. This uprising has been a long time coming. From where I’m sitting, this seems like an apocalypse in the truest sense of the word — an unveiling. We’re seeing, firsthand, the People tear down the Tower to build new structures. Pictures of Flowers means something different to me now from when I first wrote it.”


33 | Myrne | Forbidden Lovers

THE PRESS RELEASE: “Hailing from Singapore, Myrne returns with the meaningful, and deeply personal Forbidden Lovers. The single’s main story is about physical and societal bonds, that keep people apart, which is based on Myrne’s own experience when he was touring across the U.S. while his partner stayed in Singapore. It’s the first track from Myrne’s EP out later this year. “With Forbidden Lovers, I wanted to write about the physical and societal bonds that keep people apart. Some people can’t be with each other because of distance; for some, backward laws keep love forbidden. The idea for the song came to me in a hotel room while on tour, where I was separated from my partner for long periods of time.”