Indie Roundup | 32 Tracks To Improve Your Wednesday

Science Man, Close Talker, Electric Hydra, TV Priest and more midweek gems.

Science Man comes crawling back, Close Talker have deja vu all over again, Electric Hydra are back ’n’ blackened, TV Priest puts on a slideshow and more in your Wednesday Roundup. Today’s roster includes new songs by Tunng and Tungz. I hereby propose that they be forced to unite into a supergroup named Tunngz. All in favour?


1 | Science Man | Crawling Out

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Buffalo, N.Y.’s lab rat Science Man is back with a new LP Science Man II. SM II cranks the gas and doubles the dose on the maniac-fronted, drum-machine driven, relentless guitar attack that was his 2019 self-titled debut. Cannibalizing one limb of rock ’n’ roll to augment the nasty, bashing ability of it’s other more punk appendages. Think if Hot Snakes started playing only basement gigs with weirdo hardcore bands after listening to Big Black and Judas Priest in the van all day. Science Man II takes shape while flowing seemlessly though a unique blend of punk/hardcore/garage/rock ’n’ roll in just under 20 mins.”

2 | Close Talker | Second Best

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Close Talker are sharing the mysterious new video for Second Best, which can be found on the recently released deluxe version of How Do We Stay Here? “We bounced around a bunch of ideas for the Second Best video, at different points we were going to book out a baseball stadium, explore a forest, remake an ’80s aerobics video … but nothing really landed 100%,” the band says. “Then one day Matt tossed out ‘well, I had this idea of a guy getting kidnapped over and over, and something feels strange about where he’s being taken.’ There it was.” Filmed and edited by Dale Bailey and starring Motorbike James in the lead role, Second Best brings an aspect of mystery and confusion, just like all Close Talker videos. “Dale captured this discovery so wonderfully. He balances the darker, mysterious aesthetic with humour and it makes for a perfect visual for the song. No spoilers, watch til the end.”

3 | Electric Hydra | Blackened Eyes

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Electric Hydra have released Blackened Eyes, the second single/video from the band’s self-titled debut album, due out Nov. 27. “Blackened Eyes was an older and completely different song at the start,” explains vocalist, Sanne Karlsson. “It’s written in an ironic way about somebody who turned out to be really grumpy and bloody-minded after recently returning home from a U.S. tour. The message in the text is that despite how much of a diva someone is, we are all going to end up looking the same way when we’re six feet under.”

4 | TV Priest | Slideshow

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “You know those days where you just move from screen to screen to screen? Slideshow is about feeling mediated, manipulated, engaged, buoyed and repulsed in equal measures in our relationship to information, digital culture, and the algorithmic pace of 21st-century life. It’s a track that acknowledges that I’m a fully culpable participant in a behaviour ‘market’ developed by faceless tech which insists it’s the best thing for all humanity (as long as it can be monetised). And most of the time I LIKE IT (or at least tolerate it) while I scroll and scroll and scroll. I suppose all I can do is talk… On to the next one, content consumer…” — Charlie Drinkwater, TV Priest.”

5 | Matt Berninger | One More Second

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Matt Berninger — frontman of critically acclaimed group The National — just premiered the Chris Sgroi-directed video for the single One More Second, off his highly anticipated debut solo record Serpentine Prison (out Oct. 16). “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,” explains Berninger. “I just wanted to write one of those classic, simple, desperate love songs that sound great in your car.”

6 | Claudio Bagnato | Brighter Day

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “A couple of days before the official release of his debut solo album, former member of the Swiss rock/metal bands Poison Heidi and Silver Dust, Claudio Bagnato just premiered the third single Brighter Day. Says Claudio: “The album is called Nowhere. Related with the nowhere outside and the nowhere inside, referring to emptiness and nothingness. The songs are about me, about love, about feeling of unease and destruction. It’s like a stripping of my personality.”

7 | Bonobo & Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs | Heartbreak

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The upcoming EP Heartbreak sees Simon Green, aka Bonobo, team up with fellow producer Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs to deliver a dance floor-driven 12” that builds on some of the foundations of electronic music, tracing a line from 1980s NYC through to the warehouse parties of today. Lead single Heartbreak — released digitally alongside a U.K. rave-inspired visual by director Tom Andrew — is a breakbeat-driven ode to one of electronic music’s formative scenes: NYC’s disco revolution of the 1970s & ’80s.”

8 | Alias | King

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After releasing the single Lady Friends in July, the band Alias now offers the song King. More rock but still vintage, the release is accompanied by a video. King is the feeling of being a fighter instead of fearing. It’s the sentiment of becoming a beast instead of being a prey. The song is also a reference to the Tekken 3 character King.”

9 | Qoniak | Scoul

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “What would a Wednesday be without a new video from Qoniak? The release of their album Mutatio on Oct. 16. is getting closer and closer and now there is a new video. The band about the song: “Scoul is funky, vicious, and unexpected like R2D2’s motherboard running amok. First a furious hard-hitting beat, metronomic and obstinate, biting, suddenly dislocating into free improv before coming back together again.”

10 | Louis-Étienne Santais | La Plage du Nord

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Louis-Étienne Santais unveils the video for his second release La Plage du Nord, a lively, evocative and heartfelt piano piece. Speaking on the track, Louis-Étienne Santais says, “This composition is centered around a repeating motif of triplets that maintains the motion while the melody gently moves around in an intricate way. This motif is a musical analogy for the cyclical nature of most things in life. The title in itself is based on an imagery that reflects this idea in a simple manner; a beach, where tides fluctuate in a similar manner every day, and waves that come and go, crashing onto the sand/rocks in an almost perpetual motion. The name occurred to me while I was walking on the banks of the St-Lawrence River, hence mention of the Nord.”

11 | Lyrique | Live Well

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Rapper Lyrique is returning with the blissful single Live Well, which will appear on his debut full-length album, P.I.M.P. (Poetry Is My Pleasure), set for release Oct. 14. The Philippines-born, Calgary-based artist’s mélange of hip hop and R&B is pulled from the chilled-out rap underground (hear: YGTUT and Isaiah Rashad) and the eclectic soul and R&B sounds of Soulection Radio. With rhymes that often focus on his experience as a temporary migrant worker turned permanent Canadian resident, Live Well is an internal dialogue about where he’s been and how far he’s come. “Used to live the daily on a dime/Was broke as shit,” he rhymes coolly on the track, “Turn my peso up and now I’m fine/You think I’m rich.” Then, as if to clarify any misconceptions, he offers the stark reminder: “Bet you never knew I came/You done never knew I saw/Grew up in the motherland/When they die around the clock.”

12 | Matthew Mast | A Part/Apart

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The heavy and melodic songwriter, Matthew Mast debuted the lead single A Part/Apart from his upcoming album Of All The Endings. Due out Oct. 23, Mast’s forthcoming album Of All The Endings is a stirring piece of art for a bleak year that eventually pulls back the dark curtain of anxiety. A Part/Apart lives in the light, yet examines the ever-looming disquiet and its corrosive effects on Mast and his relationships.”

13 | Master KG | Jerusalema (ft. Nomcebo)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “People all over the world are falling under the spell of Master KG’s infectious breakthrough single Jerusalema. Originally released in his home country of South Africa, Jerusalema has taken on a life of its own, its irresistible feelgood vibe being discovered the world over. It only takes one listen to discover why Jerusalama is making such a big impact. From its sun-kissed beat to the sweet vocals from featured artist Nomcebo, it’s an immediately uplifting antidote to the challenging times we’re experiencing. That atmosphere resonates in the official video too, with Master KG and Nomcebo’s performance inspiring carefree dance moves from the community around them. Recorded in the Zulu language, it translates as a gospel-style message: “Jerusalema is my home / Guard me, walk with me / Don’t leave me here.”

14 | The Banshees | Silent Nightmare / Chasing Pablo

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Our upcoming single Silent Nightmare/Chasing Pablo was created in lockdown around feelings of anger and frustration that seemed to be universal. Lyrically and musically, it will take you on an emotional journey. We have all been affected by our inner thoughts and demons at some point but these feelings must be released somehow. We have supported the likes of Noel Gallagher, Inspiral Carpets and been on tour with The Pete Best Band. Our sound is influenced by bands like The Strokes, Johnny Marr, The Cure and New Order amongst others.”

15 | Syd Carter West | Cheaters

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Syd Carter West has had an unusual route to become the Americana/Southern-rock artist she is today. From award-winning opera singer to original singer-songwriter of her own dirt and dust, West has finally found her path. Cheaters, the debut single from her forthcoming self-titled EP, is powerful beyond measure. The track was written about West’s personal experience of being cheated on in a past relationship and how she was able to gain the confidence to end the relationship for good. “Instead of admitting that he cheated, he said he was raped,” says West. “Later on, he recanted and admitted that he said ‘rape’ to cover up his cheating. He manipulated an incredibly traumatizing experience in an effort to cover his ass. This song is how angry, sad and fucked up I was from that experience. This is my closure. This is my middle finger. Somehow, someway, he’s going to hear this song. And he will know it’s about him.”

16 | Violent Life Violent Death | Roseblade

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Color Of Bone, the devastating new EP from Charlotte, North Carolina-based metallic hardcore outfit Violent Life Violent Death, is set to see release on Oct. 30. Today a lyric video for the first single Roseblade makes its debut. VLVD’s vocalist Scott Cowan offers: “Roseblade is about the duality of so many things we experience in life, wittingly and unwittingly. On one end of a rose you have beautiful and delicate pedals, while painful and ensnaring thorns reside on the other. A rose can cement love and unity but can also provoke war and chaos.”

17 | Handsome Pants | Rut

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Handsome Pants is the kind of band that shows up to a gig dressed haphazardly in mismatched Value Village clothes they picked out for each other. The kind of band that doesn’t take themselves seriously just wants to rock out and have a good time with their fans. Handsome Pants proves fun does not be sacrificed to make lively, highly creative music. Loud and obnoxious is the name of the game for Handsome Pants and the rambunctious uniqueness really shines through with their new single, Rut which follows a concept that a lot of people are familiar with. The feeling of being stuck in a rut and turning to alcohol. The band explains the single in more depth: “Rut is the second release in our early existence as a band. This song is something Andrew has been sitting on for a long time and rewriting lyrics. Finally finding the right content and lyrics putting it together at this time seems perfect. It seems to relate to a lot of people right now and what they are going through with the pandemic and everything else happening right now.”

18 | Tim Burgess | Yours. To Be

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Following rave reviews for his recent solo album I Love The New Sky, Tim Burgess has announced a new EP, Ascent Of The Ascended, that will be released on Nov. 27. The six-track EP contains two superb new tracks, Yours. To Be, and The Ascent Of The Ascended, recorded soon after the album was finished. Of the lead track, Yours. To Be, Burgess says: “At the tail end of the glory of the night before — with all the hope and beauty that the following morning brings. Away from the glare of the party — like the calm after the storm has left town. It’s a feeling that’s so pure and uncluttered. It’s around a while, then real life starts to creep back in. It’s all about making the most of moments as they are happening.”

19 | Pylon | Modern Day Fashion Woman (Version 2)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Seminal art-rock legends Pylon will release Pylon Box on Nov. 6. The comprehensive set includes their studio albums Gyrate (1980) and Chomp (1983), which have been remastered from their original tapes and will be available on vinyl for the first time in nearly 35 years. Today, they share the unreleased song Modern Day Fashion Woman (Version 2) from the Razz Tape LP. Frontwoman Vanessa Briscoe Hay said, “At some point, 1979’s Modern Day Fashion Woman was forgotten about and fell off our setlist along with some other songs on Razz Tape. In the early summer of 1980, we made some hard decisions about what to record for our first album Gyrate. As cringeworthy as I find some of my vocals, it is an honest picture of our sound before we formally recorded our first single in a studio. Chris Razz preserved this unheard recording done with a Nakamichi tape deck and three mics for 41 years. Randy Bewley in particular shines.”

20 | Field Medic | I Will Not Mourn Who I Was That Has Gone Away

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Throughout 2020 Kevin Patrick Sullivan, the Bay Area singer/songwriter known as Field Medic, has been sharing an enticing series of one-off singles, inviting listeners into his creative world with hints at the mysterious Floral Prince. Today, Sullivan has revealed Floral Prince: a collection of these previously released singles and seven other unheard songs that reflects his unique songwriting approach. Due out Oct. 2, the music on Floral Prince often finds Sullivan harkening back to the spontaneity of Field Medic’s earlier work and embracing a looser, off-the-cuff process that compliments his endless well of songs and poetry. To mark the announcement, Sullivan has shared I Will Not Mourn Who I Was That Has Gone Away, a spirited acoustic singalong capturing everything that makes Sullivan’s songwriting so captivating with just a few chords, his warm voice, and conversational lyrics.”

21 | Jeffery Straker | Morning Light

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Saskatchewan singer-songwriter-pianist Jeffery Straker shares his brand new single Morning Light, from his forthcoming 2021 album Just Before Sunrise. The melodic and thought-provoking new song is about our life-long need to dream, to belong, and to matter. A song of reflection written in the wake of the sudden and unexpected passing of Jeffery’s mom. “My mom had been very sick in hospital but started to make an incredible recovery;” shares Jeffery. “The song was written while everything was seemingly OK. It was short-lived and she very suddenly passed away.”

22 | Once A Tree | 3 Day Trip

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “B.C.-born, Toronto-based Indigenous electro-pop trailblazers Once A Tree (led by Jayli and Hayden Wolf) return with a dreamy new tune, 3 Day Trip. The song imagines the journey of its title, keeping gratitude top of mind, and will be included on the duo’s new EP, Fool’s Paradise, out Nov. 20. On the song, Once A Tree says: “With this being such a hard year we wanted to make something lighthearted and hopeful. This song is really about love, gratitude, and generosity. Gratitude for the blessings you have, and the joy of sharing that prosperity with the ones you love. A lighthearted song to soak up the last of the summer vibes.”\

23 | Richard Spitzer | Worthless

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After a year of nervous breakdowns, 2020 brought New York City to the point of crisis. Cry Wolf, songwriter Richard Spitzer’s new EP, due to arrive on Oct. 23, was written as a way to calm relationship paranoia and his Jewish anxiety. Following the summer single, Text Your Ex, Spitzer today has followed with Worthless, a song about “failed encounters in love, lust and economics.” While his debut last year was a more stripped-down affair, Cry Wolf finds a middle ground to his earlier work, adding drums, synths and fuller arrangements. Cry Wolf is about overcoming paranoia, relationship worries, fear and insecurity in all forms. And of course, his Jewish upbringing.”

24 | Epitimia | Clue VI: Schizophrenia

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Hailing from St. Petersburg, The City Of White Nights, built upon the bones of the lost and displaced, Epitimia have carved out their own niche within the black metal scene. Their music is riven with heartache, instilled with a sense of separation and isolation. The guitars ascend mountains of longing, fall hopelessly into ravines of despair and the desperate vocals howl against a backdrop of ice and shadows. Epitimia’s sixth album Allusion entwines you in emotions so powerful they are inescapable and when its final echoes fade away a sense of otherness persists, holding you apart from the life that was once so comfortable. Songs like Schizophrenia lift you high above the world, changing your perspective on the brief guttering candles that are our lives.”

25 | Tunng | Death Is The New Sex

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Tunng have shared a second single from their forthcoming album Tunng Presents…Dead Club in the form of Death is the New Sex. “It’s a song about how, by challenging taboos, we might arrive at a place closer to the truth and find ourselves better able to support each other as a result,” explains lyricist Sam Genders. “We’ve journeyed so far in the last 60 years when it comes to talking about sex and I think you can make a very good case for that being a good thing … Now it seems like people are beginning to talk about death more. Imagine if we were so comfortable talking about death that everyone in our culture had the skills to support people who are grieving or to plan for the end of life for themselves or a loved one.”

26 | Palace Winter | The Deeper End

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Think Kraftwerk playing a classic country song,” says Carl Coleman. Apparently this is the sound of throttled anxiety, skeletons in the closet, and psychedelic reckoning with cognitive dissonance for Palace Winter’s lead singer. Dissonance is exactly what comes to mind when imagining the synthesizer pioneers breaking out in Townes van Zandt tunes, but Palace Winter — perennial experts in genre alchemy — prove us wrong again. Instead, The Deeper End (ft. Jason Lytle) has the same driving-through-the-desert-on-a-sunny-day feeling as many country-folk classics, despite the unusual juxtaposition. Contributing a verse of his acclaimed vocals is Grandaddy’s Lytle, perhaps playing the voice of reason to Coleman’s stark mycelial realizations. “There’s nothing more than this, I hate to let you know” he sings, continuing with more harsh truths and trippy pieces of advice. “Another you is waiting at the deeper end.”

27 | Jenny Banai | Shadow Thoughts

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Jenny Banai is an old soul and a child of the ’90s, and as such, has inherited both the contemplative wonder and the wardrobe of her parents. She is a fresh and authentic voice who pairs powerhouse vocal abilities with unique and clever pop arrangements. She blends jazz, folk, and rock into sophisticated pop music that both celebrates and laments the dynamic of human relationships and the relationship with one’s self. Jenny recently released Couchwalker, which grew into an album with the eager help of heartbreak, uncertainty and questions to do with faith. Each song embodies a timeless longing of the soul for mutual understanding and deep connection.”

28 | Helmaud | Hey Boi! (ft. Dixie)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Award-winning musician Helmaud has premiered his latest single Hey Boi! (ft. Dixie). The single will be released on Sept. 30. Says Helmaud: “On Hey Boi! half of the vocals have been recorded after midnight and on an average of 3-4 bottles of wine and 2 grams of weed, an empty wine bottle was used as the support for the mic. Starting around 11 pm finding this riff on the piano. The whole song was bounced in 4-5 hours tops.”

29 | Tungz | Somebody To Get Shy With (ft. Bad Sounds)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Following on from the huge praise they received for their previous singles Can’t We Just Be Friends Again and Go Out earlier this year, Bristol-based Tungz now look to cement their positive and upward ascent as they announce the details behind their highly-anticipated new EP Why Do Anything?, previewed by the newly unveiled Bad Sounds collaboration Somebody To Get Shy With. Tungz said, “We’ve been fans of Bad Sounds for so long and always felt a spiritual connection to their vibe. We gradually got to know them through the Bristol scene going to each other’s shows and hanging out afterwards. So when the Tungzphone rang and the gang wanted to do a song with us we were buzzed as fuzz. We’ve only ever produced music at home so it was crazy to see the Bad Sounds mothership and sit side by side exploring new musical worlds. It was so cool to get to know the guys better, and bring into real life the connection we’d felt to them both as fans and Bristol music people. The song is about changing relationships: falling for a friend and not knowing how to deal with your new feelings.”

30 | Yukkon | Fish Feet

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Yukkon is a former USC music student and producer/composer. He released his first EP back in 2019 entitled Slow Days and a single earlier this summer entitled California Blue. His music has lent comparisons to Tame Impala, Vacationer, and Magic City Hippies. Fish Feet represents a shift into the organic and imaginative realm in an attempt to stick with a former, more ethereal approach while crafting more complex grooves. “I attempt to make every song feel like a journey, as I’m a huge advocate for getting outdoors. I love camping, skating, road-tripping, and exploring the unknown. Fish Feet is a song that paints a picture of self-discovery in a childlike sense.”

31 | Tara Hack | Let Go

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Singer-songwriter Tara Hack has just released the second single off of her debut album titled Let Go. From a young age, Tara Hack realized the power and symbolism of music. Tara was discovered as a New York City subway busker in the Big Apple’s bustling Penn Station while playing for huge crowds of New York commuters as part of the Musicians Under New York program. She experienced the thrill of recording some of her songs at the famed Abbey Road studios.”

32 | Scenic Route to Alaska | Polarized

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Polarized, the new single from Scenic Route to Alaska, is about the ongoing division in society and the constant mania of life’s ups and downs. It’s about the need for positive change, openness and equality. Produced by Scenic Route to Alaska and Colin Stewart, the immersive and intuitive recording experience translates throughout Polarized. Enjoy the tune, feel the groove and then go do something nice for someone else.”