Indie Roundup | 37 Tracks To Make Thursday More Thrilling

Gear up for Friday with Figure Walking, Jailbirds, Shame, GA-20 and plenty more.

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Figure Walking live up to their name, The Jailbirds get dull, Shame are letter perfect, Muck and the Mires play with blocks, GA-20 cut loose and more in your Thursday Roundup. Have you started watching Raised by Wolves yet? It’s pretty cool — if you can get past the fact that the mullet is apparently the official hairstyle of the post-apocalyptic future.

 


ON REPEAT

1 | Figure Walking | Colourful

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “This Friday, Figure Walking — drummer Rob Gardiner (Conduct, Pip Skid) and Canadian independent music stalwart Greg MacPherson (baritone guitar, vocals, keys) — will release their new LP Vertical/Horizontal. Today, they share the new video for album track Colourful which “is a kind of weather report; projecting a bitter cold front ahead of vicious winds, heavy ice and freezing rains,” says MacPherson. “There’s a violent storm overhead, some of us are hiding under our houses or huddled near a load bearing wall but there are many who seem convinced against evidence that all will be well.” In the video for Colourful, MacPherson says “Three true believers navigate modernity and late-stage capitalism, preparing themselves for a new world; one is a believer in science, the next religion, the third commerce. They grapple with over 100 years of Winnipeg urban design and then square off with one another in a bizarre post-cultural dance-a-thon.”


2 | The Jailbirds | Dull My Brain

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Dynamic Canadian hard rock trio The Jailbirds recently released their mammoth latest single Dull My Brain and today they are proud to present the official music video. Dull My Brain shines new light on The Jailbirds as their sound ventures into a different sonic realm, by delivering a cut that you can just hear echoing through arenas. Dull My Brain is the first song and story on their upcoming five-track concept EP. Featuring timeless rock-inspired guitar riffs and ’80s hard rock-style vocals, The Jailbirds have a fresh yet nostalgic feel, reminiscent of the ’70s rock scene whilst still being new and exciting. In this song you can hear heavy influence from some of the boys’ favourite bands, including Guns N’ Roses, Van Halen and Deep Purple.”


3 | Shame | Alphabet

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Shame have announced their much-anticipated return via the frenetic, storming new single Alphabet. It marks their first new music since the release of their critically acclaimed debut album Songs of Praise in 2018. Alongside, the band have shared a Tegen Williams-directed video for the single, capturing the unnerving nature of hypnagogic hallucinations and the distressing way the mind can play tricks on us while dreaming. On the track, produced by James Ford, frontman Charlie Steen explains: “Alphabet is a direct question, to the audience and the performer, on whether any of this will ever be enough to reach satisfaction. At the time of writing it, I was experiencing a series of surreal dreams where a manic subconscious was bleeding out of me and seeping into the lyrics. All the unsettling and distressing imagery I faced in my sleep have taken on their own form in the video.”


4 | Muck and the Mires | She Blocked My Number

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:She Blocked My Number is the new video and single by Muck and the Mires, and is featured on the band’s upcoming EP Take Me Back To Planet Earth, out on Sept. 25. The new Muck and the Mires release will feature six fresh tracks, all written and recorded while the band has been off the road self-isolating. “The band’s fun and messy rock ’n’ roll style is a throwback to the proto-punk groups of the 60’s like The Kinks and most specifically The Sonics,” says Allston Pudding of the band when describing the new single. “Like The Sonics, the band’s tongue-in-cheek, never-grow-up style of humor is on full display here, with the ’60s throwback complementing the modern-day lyrics.”


5 | GA-20 | Cut You Loose

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Boston blues band GA-20 will release their EP GA-20 Live Vol. 1 on Sept. 18. Today, they share their newest video: A fiery live cover of Cut You Loose. This is the way blues was meant to be: LIVE! This EP is the first of many live efforts from GA-20 to come. These tracks showcase the group’s wide range, from the raw electric blues of 1960s Chicago to a more mellow vibe like the Wood Brothers. GA-20 was formed by friends Pat Faherty and Matthew Stubbs in Boston in 2018. The project was born out of their mutual love of heavy traditional blues, R&B, and rock ’n’ 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.”


6 | Teenanger | Romance For Rent

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto’s DIY scene purveyors Teenanger have shared their new single Romance For Rent, from the new record Good Time – out Oct. 2. Romance For Rent presents another snappy highlight from the forthcoming record, with the quartet pulling on incisive hooks and buoyant melodies that further mine this fresh, pop-punk angle to the group’s sound. “The lyrics were inspired by a friend of mine who had come out of a long-term relationship and was exploring the world of online dating,” says singer Chris Swimmings. “I’ve been a serial monogamist for the last 12 years so it was a vicarious exploration into his life at the time.”


7 | The Blue Stones | Let It Ride

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Alternative-rock duo The Blue Stones unveiled Let It Ride, their latest single. The track debuted in the form of a live video, capturing the duo returning to their element on stage and giving fans a chance to experience the song as a captivating performance. From the moment the fuzzed-out guitars kick off the track, Tarek Jafar’s bluesy voice and drummer Justin Tessier’s ground-shaking beat combine to create a stadium-sized anthem perfect for soundtracking an end-of-summer road trip. Tarek stated: “It’s a song about having an appetite for adventure and a desire for security at the same time. Musicians are ambitious and adventurous, and hard to pin down into a stable, traditional lifestyle. And if you want to love us, you have to let us roam.”


8 | Jeremy Ivey | Things Could Get Much Worse

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Singer-songwriter Jeremy Ivey has released Things Can Get Much Worse, the second single from his upcoming album Waiting Out The Storm. Of the song Ivey says, “I don’t write a whole lot of positive songs, but I try to have one per record at least. So this is my positive message for the world. These are the good old days no matter how bad they seem. Just remember, life could be a lot harder than it already is. This song was written in about ten minutes, this is our first take in the studio and the video was shot in a couple hours. All in the moment and off the cuff, the way it should be.”


ALSO ON THE PLAYLIST

9 | Austin Lucas | Already Dead

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Austin Lucas is a punk journeyman, activist and songwriter from Bloomington, Ind. Consumed by an overdeveloped sense of wanderlust as a young person, Austin spent his formative years in the driver’s seat of various beat-up Ford Econolines. Burning through countless miles and living the world over, he’s made his home everywhere from the American West Coast to the Czech Republic. During the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown, Lucas has sheltered in place in Mainz, Germany. Although growing homesick far away from his home and family in Indiana, he has successfully used this extra time and inspired energy to prove that it’s impossible to keep a good troubadour down, writing and recording songs for his forthcoming album, Alive In The Hot Zone! Already Dead is the first single and video.”


10 | Yoke Lore | Fade Away

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “New York indie-pop storyteller Adrian Galvin — aka Yoke Lore — releases the official video for his most recent single Fade Away. Animated and directed by Aishwarya Sadasivan, the video is symbolic of putting aside differences for conflict resolution. “My new music video is about two characters who are forced to figure out whether their differences outweigh their similarities. A boy and a cheetah are put in a situation where they can either identify with one another and conquer a common enemy together, or have their differences divide them and force them into a dangerous conflict,” Galvin explains. “I think it is a situation a lot of us are faced with every day. I believe it’s an interaction worth considering and worth dramatizing. It tells the story of Fade Away on a macrocosmic scale.”


11 | La Femme | Paradigme

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “French psych-pop band La Femme make their return with Paradigme, a new video and single previewing the release of their upcoming third album. Refocused around their original trio of Sacha Got, Marlon Magnée and Sam Lefèvre, this is La Femme’s first release since their 2016 acclaimed album Mystére. Paradigme has all the elements behind the band’s signature sound: overpowering melodies, nonchalant vocals, old school brass arrangement, and an irresistible chorus. The Paradigm video includes secret codes and hidden references, all originating in La Femme’s unrivaled creative imagination. Think futuristic Boswell Sisters transplanted into a scene from Brian DePalma’s Phantom of the Paradise. La Femme leaves the view on a cliff-hanger at the end of the Paradigme video. Who are those people underneath that neon sign? And indeed, what should we expect from La Femme’s next appearance? Much, much more intrigue to come…”


12 | Max | Working For The Weekend (ft. bbno$)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Max has joined forces with Vancouver-based new wave rapper bbno$ for his latest single Working For The Weekend. The song — produced by indie pop heavyweights AJR — is the latest track off Max’s forthcoming sophomore album Colour Vision, out Sept. 18. Said Max: “I asked my friend bbno$, who’s also a hard-core hustler, to add his story to the song and we went back and forth on his verse on a Saturday (when we were both supposed to be taking a day off) until it was perfect. The irony is beautiful. It’s the late nights, the early mornings, the never being able to turn it off and constantly thinking of ways to grow when you’re doing what you’re the most passionate about.”


13 | Grave Desecrator | Temple Of Abominations

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Long-serving Brazilian black/death metal group Grave Desecrator recently released a video for the track Temple of Abominations from their latest album Dust to Lust. The video contains footage from the 20 Years Of Desecration Tour. With this video, the Brazilian group puts an end to the Dust to Lust era. The quartet is currently working on the new album that is likely to appear in the first half of 2021. The band states: “We are ending a cycle and starting a new chapter in the history of Grave Desecrator. We are finalizing the new compositions, and very soon, we will enter the studio to start the recording process.”


14 | Bangladeafy | Tar

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “As New York City-based avant metal duo Bangladeafy prepare for their new album Housefly to see release next week, the first video for the album has been unleashed. The hyperactive attack of Tar is now playing. Jon Ehlers reveals, “In our early days, we had the privilege of playing some of the craziest loft shows Brooklyn has probably ever seen: four floors of varied debauchery followed by a trail of blood on the concrete stairs due to someone stepping on glass barefoot. Tar is a direct reflection on what made that lawless time period feel so cozy in retrospect.”


15 | Growing Concerns | Shout Across Mountains

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Chicago’s Growing Concerns Poetry Collective announce their new album Big Dark Bright Futures, out Oct. 16. Lead single Shout Across Mountains and its joyous refrain “we full-voice people!” celebrate not only the fullness of Black cultural sound, but the fullness of Black culture itself, even in the face of new hostilities. The accompanying video directed by Talia Koylass features footage from protests sparked by the police killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and a host of Black Americans killed at the hands of police and white supremacists. “We are living through a moment in history,” the group say. “The stakes feel higher than they’ve been in our lifetime, and generations ahead of us will want to know what choices we made and what we fought for. They’ll want to know what we cared about and if we spoke up. This is the answer we’ll be able to give them.”


16 | Arch Echo | To The Moon

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Critically acclaimed progressive metal/fusion five-piece Arch Echo return with a new EP titled Story I on Oct. 2. The lead single To The Moon is now streaming. Keyboardist Joey Izzo says, “To The Moon is contagiously uplifting and a really fun sonic journey. The groovy part in the middle is a bit of a new adventure for us and then it ends with a huge keyboard solo that was a ton of fun to make. I’m really happy with how this one turned out!”


17 | Lewis Knaggs | I’ll Survive

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:I’ll Survive is the latest from Lewis Knaggs. Propelled by the success of his previous single Hold On, the British singer shares the video for his new single. I’ll Survive brings imaginative song writing with a vulnerable vocal performance that is both resonant yet endearing. With it’s powerful visuals, Lewis explores the whirlwind of emotions associated with the loss of a loved one, beautifully interwoven with the track’s narrative. Building his name as a cinematographer, the in-demand creative has helped birth an array of stunning visuals from the likes of Tom Walker, Post Malone and The XX. Lewis now steps into the forefront with his own story to tell, with compelling narratives and a voice that is destined to shine.”


18 | Sylvan Esso | Frequency

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Sylvan Esso have released Frequency, the third single from their eagerly anticipated new album Free Love, coming out Sept. 25. The song is accompanied by a new video directed and styled by Moses Sumney. “We had a fantastic and rewarding time collaborating with our friend and fellow North Carolinian Moses Sumney, on building a visual world for Frequency,” say Sylvan Esso. “He had such a beautiful vision for the project, one that ran parallel to the song’s initial source in a way that showed us new spaces it could inhabit. It’s a beautiful exploration of being together and apart at the same time — we feel it rings clearly in this moment.”


19 | Django Django | Spirals

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Django Django make an electrifying return with the new single Spirals, their first new material since the Winter’s Beach EP in 2018, and an utterly compelling glimpse at what’s to come. Sounding invigorated and more energized than ever, Spirals doubles as a tantalizing return to form as well as a rousing call to arms. Beginning with elegant circling synths that grow into a never-more-relevant anthem to hope, it uses the image of DNA to muse on the connections we have as humans being stronger than the divisions. One of the tracks specifically written as part of the forthcoming live set, its dynamics are galvanising: a steady accumulation of joyous energy.”


20 | Flara K | Patience

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “On Sept. 26, Montreal duo Flara K are heading out on a one-month RV trip across Canada in support of their EP Anxious, Irrational, Fashionable, out Oct. 2. In conjunction with the announcement, the band share an acoustic version of their single Patience filmed in the RV. “This song was written about my experience with being in an unhealthy and verbally abusive workplace that led me to a very dark state of mind,” shares Sam. “Through my struggle with depression, I realized how much love, strength, and patience is really needed to get yourself out of that state of mind and find hope even when it feels impossible.”


21 | Rhye | Helpless

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Rhye — the project of Canadian-born Juno-winner Michael Milosh — releases a new slinky, R&B number, Helpless. Helpless focuses on love in its most intimate and romantic form. With his distinct countertenor, Milosh chronicles the desire to “write a million love songs,” not as a grand gesture but an everyday promise. His voice glides over an euphonious blend of percussion, string arrangements, and a flurry of synths and keys.”


22 | James Humphrys | All The Same

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Bristol songwriter and multi-instrumentalist James Humphrys celebrates two months of his new EP Memory Palace with the release of the new video for All The Same. James said: “The directors Em Turner, Ruben Neviazsky and I wanted a video that was playful and fun but that also tapped into the strange current circumstances we find ourselves in: The idea of a flirtatious, social-distanced dance with a stranger (Jacinda Vuorinen) from across the street. I’ve always loved music videos that incorporate dance as it’s an natural, organic response when we hear music and we were greatly influenced by the band Jungle and their one-take choreographed music videos. Thankfully we avoided high school musical remakes and untied shoelaces (though we won’t mention the lamp-post incident).”


23 | Matt Berninger | One More Second

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In anticipation of Serpentine Prison, the upcoming debut solo record from Matt Berninger — frontman of critically acclaimed group The National — Berninger is premiering the new single, One More Second, alongside a lyric video. “I wrote One More Second with Matt Sheehy (Lost Lander, EL VY), with the intention for it to be a kind of answer to Dolly Parton’s I Will Always Love You, or sort of the other side of that conversation,” says Berninger. “I just wanted to write one of those classic, simple, desperate love songs that sound great in your car.” Serpentine Prison arrives Oct. 16.”


24 | Austra | Risk It (Indie Jordan Remix)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Austra (Katie Austra Stelmanis) shares a new India Jordan remix of Risk It, the song that launched HiRUDiN earlier this year. Jordan adds their trademark joyful piano stabs whilst looping Katie’s unmistakable vocals, managing to balance the tenderness of the lyrics with a rave-ready sentiment. Stelmanis says of the remix: “India Jordan recently put out one of my favourite records in a while (complete with a very on point Tipping The Velvet reference) so I was very honoured they agreed to do this remix. The new track is sunny and euphoric and everything I dreamed it would be!”


25 | Draag | Loro

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Fresh off the release of their Lansing cover by Vinyl Williams, indie-shoegaze quintet Draag are back with a new take on Pinback’s Loro. This is the second release in a series to be shared by the L.A. band each week leading up to Oct. 9, when their Covers EP will drop. The project also features versions of songs by Deerhunter, Throbbing Gristle, Milton Nascimento & Lô Borges and Goon. When the band’s plans for a summer tour were cancelled due to COVID, the group “decided we’d use the time we’d spend on the road to make this EP instead, sending stems back and forth to each other. The choice of songs to cover was very stream of consciousness — instinctually chosen from a combination of Twitter recommendations and artists that expand the definition of music to us.”


26 | King Parrot | Banished, Flawed Then Docile

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Australian grind legion King Parrot are back with a blistering four-track EP of their signature brand of uncompromising thrashy, punked out grindcore chaos. Entitled Holed Up In The Lair, the EP was recorded during some time off between tours, and the intention was simple: “four days, four tracks, write em’, record em’, and be done with it.” This was the result. In advance of the EP’s release, the band unleashes opening track Banished, Flawed Then Docile.”


27 | Steph Richards | Underbelly

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “As one of the most exciting artists working in jazz’s avant-garde, Steph Richards is no stranger to challenging listeners’ expectations, helping them hear things they might not have previously imagined with experiments that range from playing underwater to incorporating a carousel into one of her compositions. But the trumpeter, composer and bandleader is pushing in a still more unusual direction on her upcoming release Supersense (out Oct. 23). Along with a trio of fellow all-star improvisers — Jason Moran, Stomu Takeishi and Kenny Wolleson — Richards tapped acclaimed multimedia artist Sean Raspet to create singular, abstract scents to both inform and accompany the recording.”


28 | Charlie Kaplan | California Days

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “New York musician Charlie Kaplan — known by most, perhaps, as the smiley bassist in the soft-rock band Office Culture — has announced the impending release of his debut album Sunday, along with the release of its first single, California Days. Written in the wake of his father’s death, Sunday was created over the course of three years with producer/multi-instrumentalist Andrew Daly Frank and drummer Ben Wagner, with enhancements and contributions from Kaplan’s friends and close musical associates, including his Office Culture bandmates Winston Cook-Wilson and Ian Wayne, Caitlin Pasko, and Cuddle Magic horn section Alec Spiegelman and Cole Kamen-Green. “I wrote these songs in order to counteract the darkness I felt in bereavement. Each song was an exercise in conjuring light, warmth, insight, guidance, release — my life’s absent emotional palette,” he explains. “I used music as a way to induce feelings that no longer occurred naturally.”


29 | Gabriel Garzón-Montano | Bloom

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Gabriel Garzón-Montano presents new single Bloom from his forthcoming album Agüita, out Oct. 2. Bold, confident, and utterly multifaceted, Garzón-Montano explores three characters across Agüita’s 50-minute runtime: the debonair leading man, the Latin Urban hitmaker, and the wistful impressionist. Comparing the growth and loss inherent in human life with the changing of the seasons and the life cycles of the universe, Bloom is “a song about birth, life, decay and death,” says Garzón-Montano. “I looked up the word bloom and was delighted at the many definitions it boasts. Using the ones that lent themselves to my story I decided to start the first and last phrase in each stanza with the word. Each line uses the definition to describe a different state of human development of a stage of life.”


30 | Summer Salt | Little Legs

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Based in Austin, TX, Summer Salt blends vibrant yet breezy vocal harmony and colorful elements of 1960s pop, Bossa Nova and jazz. Summer Salt’s latest offering is the four-track EP Avenue G. With songs dedicated to the heart of Austin where the duo started, Avenue G is a revival EP featuring tracks written when the band was younger. The duo revisited these songs and brought them back to life with a fresh twist. The infectious single Little Legs is Summer Salt’s first pure pop tune. Detailing how strength is more than a physical trait and more importantly emotional and mental, Summer Salt urge fans to embrace themselves and find some sort of peace in true acceptance.”


31 | Luca Fogale | Slow Correction

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “B.C. songwriter Luca Fogale has shared one final track, Slow Correction, from his upcoming sophomore album Nothing is Lost, prior to its arrival next Friday, Sept. 18. Discussing the track, Fogale states, “Slow Correction is a song full of questions about how to change things for the better, as well as the hope that patience and trust can help us transcend the worst of times.”


32 | Pterodactyl Problems | One of the Boys

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Boundary-pushing Toronto rockers Pterodactyl Problems release a cover of Katy Perry’s One of the Boys. Anyone who’s familiar with Pterodactyl Problems’ debut album Esoteric Hobbies or their early 2020 cover of Adele’s Hello won’t be surprised at the gender-bending intensity this band brings forth. With a varied range of influences including Weezer, Van Halen, Primus, The Killers and Queen, this outfit makes an impact. The band says, “After releasing our Sabbath medley, we’re glad we can go a little silly with this one. Katy Perry is definitely outside of most of our comfort zones, but I think we were really able to make it our own, and make it kick ass.”


33 | Summer Heart | Good Together

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Following on from his 12 Songs Of Summer project, which has seen him release a new song or remix every month for the past year, Swedish musical troubadour David Alexander aka Summer Heart has now returned to announce his latest EP Ambitions, which arrives on Nov. 6. “Since my tour got cancelled, it was the first time in my adult life I actually didn’t have anything to do. It was very freeing and I could sit down and think about what I wanted to create and what I had struggled with in the past. I realised I’ve just wanted too much and never really been able to slow down and see things from a different perspective. The EP itself is about having high ambitions and wanting to do so many things at the same time but not always knowing where to put your focus.”


34 | Ka Fu | The Hope Is Open

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Electronic producer Ka Fu has released his new single The Hope Is Open, the fifth taste of his second album Heretic, set to drop on Oct. 9. “This track is about the neverending path of finding your own home. Everyone was born somewhere and that is our physical home but still, our soul is always in search of the place to be connected with. My experience is that it’s all about my internal world and not the pictures around it. For instance, if I’m ready to open my heart to everyone I meet on my way, accepting people as they are without any fears, means that my home is open and it’s everywhere I go.”


35 | Pulchra Morte | Ex Rosa Ceremonia

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Death/doom unit Pulchra Morte will release their long-anticipated second full-length Ex Rosa Ceremonia on Nov. 6. The nine-track offering carries on where the band’s Divina Autem Et Aniles debut left off conjuring often alarmingly weighty psalms focused on atmosphere, feeling, and flow. However, where Divina Autem Et Aniles explored the many facets of death, with Ex Rosa Ceremonia the Pulchra Morte collective sought to “pull the veil back a bit and expose more of our collective path and intention,” further elaborating, “Ex Rosa Ceremonia conceptually refers to a need for a mental and spiritual renaissance.” In advance, Pulchra Morte unleashed the record’s title track.”


36 | Pierre Kwenders & Clément Bazin | Sentiment

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Sentiment is the first single off the EP Classe Tendresse, a collaborative effort from Pierre Kwenders and Clément Bazin to be released on Oct. 23. For Kwenders, this first release is a love letter to Africa that plunges us in a universe of smiling melancholy and nostalgic longing. “It’s my love anthem with a prompt to “coupé décalé” carried by a simple message: One Love, Moko feeling!,” says Kwenders of the song. Adds  Bazin: I have nothing else to say — besides that Allô Dakar, ici Brazza, qu’est ce qu’on s’amuse à Kinshasa is the best opening line that I’ve ever heard.”


37 | David Morrison | Wayside

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:David Morrison, a Canadian-based R&B musician, announced the official release for his single Wayside. Produced in Toronto, the single will be part of his forthcoming untitled album set for release in 2021. Having been classically trained at the Berklee College of Music, Morrison uses inspiration from his background as a jazz guitarist. While he has eventually expanded outside of Jazz music, his deep experience in jazz and interest in music theory and history has shaped much of his music today.”