Indie Roundup | 26 Tracks You Need This Wednesday

Maximize your midweek with Phantom High, Lumer, James Yorkston & many more.


Phantom High paint it black, Lumer hit the sheets, James Yorkston & The Second Hand Orchestra are hell-bent for leather, John Garrison shares a revolting development — and your Wednesday Roundup is just getting started. I, on the other hand, have pretty much had enough.


1 | Phantom High | Black Divine

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto’s Phantom High are debuting their latest single Black Divine. Dubbed “ironic pop back from hell,” Phantom High will entice those looking for something very different from the traditional rock aesthetic. Those who can look past the mask can expect a cathartic release, anthemic melodies, heavy guitars, and abysmal soundscapes under honest unfiltered lyrics. The lyrics and inspiration behind Black Divine resonate in a special way, as vocalist Peril Erinyes explains: “Taken from ancient Egyptian culture, ‘Sacred or Divine Feminine,’ which referred to aspects and/or traits of artistry. Mine was dark, hence the addition of ‘black.’ It’s essentially the title I’d given the ‘closet’ I was in, the music and dreams of becoming my true self, were what kept me from ending my life, despite how poor, how alone, and how sick or abused I was, there was always my Black Divine to close my eyes and fall into its promise, like a symbiotic possession.”

2 | Lumer | The Sheets

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Yorkshire’s riotous post-punks Lumer have announced that their debut Disappearing Act EP comes out Jan. 29. Says lead vocalist Alex Evans: “The entire writing process felt incredibly easy. It takes, whoever can be bothered to listen, down a bitter road of different experiences and what we despise in the world. It talks of love, hate, hope and death, and ultimately the personal things that affects the majority of people’s lives.” New single The Sheets spirals with the sadness of a broken heart and the juxtaposition between hatred and love.”

3 | James Yorkston & The Second Hand Orchestra | Ella Mary Leather

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “As we head towards the end of the year, James Yorkston and The Second Hand Orchestra unveil a new video for Ella Mary Leather, from their forthcoming album The Wide, Wide River due Jan. 22. While Ella Mary Leather is titled after a Herefordshire folk song collector in the early 20th century, the song is not about her. Yorkston explains: “I am just using her lyrical name as a mask, to protect the innocent.” Over a wealth of percussion, violin, nyckelharpa, Yorkston plays buoyant piano as he sings us a story about a friend from many years ago.”

4 | John Garrison | The Revolution Is Just Waiting A Name

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “British indie-rocker John Garrison shares the video for The Revolution Is Just Waiting A Name, the second single from his new album Extinguisher. John shares: “We went from actually talking to our neighbours to sending them an invisible ‘like’. Filters and endless storage means that we can alter, re-shoot, and manipulate our own lives to fit in with the ones we watch and envy everyday. Imagine if we could go back in time and pinpoint where this separation and division started. The moment we handed over control of what we and our kids see on a daily basis, to a computer program. What would we have done differently? Would we all just sit back and watch? Or would we do something about it?”

5 | Lauren Lakis | Sail Away

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Dark dream-rock artist Lauren Lakis’s song Sail Away explores the idea of running away with your inner child, protecting and parenting them. Says Lakis: “It’s me becoming my own mother, which was something I had to do at a young age … (My mother) struggled with addiction until I was almost 10 years old; I don’t have many memories of my childhood before that age … The inner child is the part of us that is innocent, vulnerable, playful, full of wonder, freely trusting and loving. It hasn’t always been easy to connect with that side of myself.”

6 | Sizzy Rocket | Brain Stew

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Sizzy Rocket is releasing an explosive live cover video of Green Day’s Brain Stew, recorded in an abandoned theme park. Sizzy Rocket’s third studio album Anarchy was released earlier this year — and this performance was part of her recent virtual concert Anarchy: Come To Life, which was shot in one continuous take at the now-closed Lake Dolores Water Park.”

7 | Picard Brothers | It’s Not Over

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The Picard Brothers (Clément and Maxime) channel the ’90s spirit on the new tongue-in-cheek video for It’s Not Over. The pair explain: “In a parallel universe where the Picard Brothers are the most famous weightlifters in all of USSR, a young fan desperately works out to look like his idols. He’ll soon find out that the machines have other plans for him.” The French duo possess a Midas touch when it comes to remixes, having chalked up hit remixes for the likes of Beck, Robyn and Flume.”

8 | The Parson Red Heads | Fall And Be Found

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Fall & Be Found is about a belief in the possibilities of beauty and transcendence in this world, both natural and supernatural,” bandleader Evan Way says. “It’s about embracing the idea that there is so much more to this life and existence than we ever really take time to acknowledge while we’re in the thick of it. More so now than ever, life often seems to be full of chaos, pain, heartache, confusion — not always, but often. And when we’re in the midst of those seasons, it often seems impossible to realize that despite that, there is beauty, there is an unexplainable magic in life and existence.”

9 | Anna Elizabeth Laube | All My Runnin’

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Singer-songwriter Anna Elizabeth Laube announced the release of her new retrospective album, Annamania, on Jan. 22. To celebrate the news, Laube shared the lyric video for All My Runnin’, a song she wrote after a long period of touring. “I knew that I had to settle down for a while and did that in Seattle from 2016-2019, four and a half years,” adds Laube. “I wrote this right after arriving and really finding some beautiful and simpatico people there.”

10 | Michaela Anne | If I Wanted Your Opinion

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “When was the last time you had to quiet the voices of others, go against the opinions around you and stand in the conviction of your own voice?” asks Nashville Americana artist Michaela Anne. Inspired by a Shania Twain-type sass, If I Wanted Your Opinion is Anne’s rallying cry to keep your opinions and judgments to yourself if they are critical of others. “We wanted to create a fun, anthemic PSA of sorts asserting ourselves as independent beings, not needing to adhere to or listen to the expectations or ‘advice’ put upon us.”

11 | Anna Shoemaker | Silver Cowboy Boots (ft. Invisible Will)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Brooklyn singer-songwriter Anna Shoemaker releases her new single/video, Silver Cowboy Boots (feat. Invisible Will). As Coco Chanel once said, “if you are sad, if you are heartbroken, make yourself up, dress up, add more lipstick and attack,” and that’s exactly what Shoemaker was thinking when she impulse purchased a pair of silver boots while nursing her broken heart: “I wrote this song after my ex and I broke up for the second time. He seemed to be doing fine and I was still heartbroken. I was in the studio sad, hungover, and wearing these insane silver Fendi cowboy boots I had bought myself and was just like, you know what, maybe this is fine?,” she says. “All that guy did was mess with me, these boots can’t mess with me. They match everything, they look sick, they never tell me not to work with a certain producer or rapper because they’re jealous, they never get in fights at bars and then bleed all over my apartment, they never block my number for no reason, they never laugh at me or tell me I need to be better on stage if I want to make it big. They just make me look good and stand tall and confident, and that’s really all you can ask for from a relationship.”

12 | Gravesend | Needle Park

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Gravesend arise with ill intent like a foul emanation from the aging sewage filled rot slowly winding its way beneath the city’s vast concrete walls and pavement pathways; a New York of discarded needles, noxious fumes, scavenging rats, broken bottles, and cracked minds. An aural manifesto of urban blight and disgust, Methods Of Human Disposal is the appropriately grotesque follow-up to their cult-revered Preparations For Human Disposal 2020 demo. The LP works like a lone killer stalking the streets, internally seething with rage, preparing to cast off the last remnants of restraint. Bear witness to savage black/death metal with a hellish grindcore fixation, searing warped speeds, and the slowly swelling carnage of a derailed subway pileup. Hear the single Needle Park now.”

13 | Gianfranco GFN | Why (ft. Florence Chitacumbi)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “This is a new track that will be part of the new album to be released in 2021. This song is rather in a pop-rock style, and it tells a story that is very much alive nowadays.”

14 | King Baal | Immortality

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Portuguese heavy metal combo King Baal will release their debut album Conjurements on Jan. 29. Somewhere between doom, symphonic and pure heavy metal, King Baal hail from Portugal and display a very personal approach to metal, blending powerful and intense patterns with occasional dreamy musical landscapes. This emotion-filled energy is topped with a mix of sung, spoken and screaming vocals, thus adding even more depth to the band’s dark mood. All these elements are present in Conjurements, an album inspired by King Solomon’s writings.”

15 | Matteo Ciminari | ForNiche

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Matteo Ciminari is a London composer, guitarist, keyboardist and player of the theremin. Ciminari weaves the unusual instrument into a soup of genre-bending music with influences ranging from Thelonious Monk to Frank Zappa to Igor Stravinsky. Recorded remotely during the coronavirus lockdown by musicians in the U.K. and Italy, his album Fried Hippocampus is inspired by Ciminari’s love of food as well as the limbic system, the set of structures in the brain that deal with emotions and memory, and — in Ciminari’s words — where “all of the archetypes are recorded.”

16 | TruCarr | What I See (ft. G Perico)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Watts rapper TruCarr joins with G Perico to release the newest seductive single What I See, off his upcoming debut project Based On a Tru Story, releasing in 2021. Produced by XL, the hypnotic synth-laden track brings the two rappers together to sing about the allure and charm of their ladies. Says TruCarr: “Working With G Perico was dope. The video shoot was good vibes and the energy was A1. We took pointers from each other, chopped it up bout some Watts stuff and what’s next in the works, just know we coming with it.”

17 | Morpheus Project | Nights to Remember

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Mustafa Khetty is a composer already making a name for himself in the worlds of prog and classical music. With influences from as far afield as the Far East and South America, Mustafa’s new venture Morpheus Project, sees him at his most creative. Building a team of top musicians around him, Mustafa acts as a master of ceremonies, creating the complex and beautiful soundscapes in his mind with a wide array of instrumentation and no limitations. Now returning with the followup to the stunning, expansive debut Mozaick, Morpheus Project are back with the explosive new single Nights To Remember.”

18 | Dead Dirty Dinosaurs | Bad Timing

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Life is never simple and relationships can take us all to the depths of confusion, on all sorts of levels. Bad Timing takes a sneak peek at a few moments in time for two people who have no clue what they want or how to get it, sound familiar? The Treble D’s bring you another pounding indie-rock anthem that will keep you bouncing all the way until the final woos.The trademark riffs are back with a dirty bassline and the driving drums that we are starting to expect as standard from the Dead Dirty Dinosaurs.”

19 | Rioghan | Enough

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Finnish songstress Rioghan is set to release her debut EP Blackened Sky on March 10. The second single and music video Enough arrived today. Rioghan Darcy comments: “This was the first song we did together and after this one the whole concept became much lighter. Originally we were supposed to do ”only” this kind of songs, but then we threw all genres to trash and decided to do what we wanted instead.”

20 | Spectrograph | Dmbt

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Dmbt is the opening track of A Giant Leap Of Faith, the debut EP from Spectrograph. The song is a post-industrial mixture of rough and mechanical textures, pounded by a hypnotic, claustrophobic rhythm of noir and psychotic atmospheres. According to the London duo, “the idea behind the track draws inspiration from the drum programming you find in the songs from The Cure’s Pornography, and it has a distinctive marching and mechanical rhythm which we always sort of associate with industrial music.” The video is directed by experimental visual artist Less Than One.”

21 | Django Django | Glowing In The Dark (Hot Chip Remix)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Hot on the heels of announcing their fourth album Glowing in the Dark, Django Django unveil Hot Chip’s remix of the title track. They give it their own distinctive twist, refracting the original through a gloriously warped hall of mirrors to deliver something odder, more off-kilter but no less deliriously infectious. In Hot Chip’s words: “We were stoked out of our minds to get our hands on this track from Django Django; so strong and fun and addictive!” In the band’s own words: “We’ve been huge fans of Hot Chip from the beginning and had the pleasure of supporting them live a few times now so we’re really chuffed to have a remix from them.”

22 | Lowell | God Is A Fascist

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Lowell has had a unique journey from dropping out of college and working as a stripper to finding her footing as the go-to songwriter for platinum-selling pop stars. Today she delivers new single God Is A Fascist, a moody ballad with her signature poetically brazen lyrics and universally relatable subject matter for these isolating times. Lowell shares, “This song is very near and dear to me. Written at a low point in both my career and my relationship, it’s simply about feeling like you belong together and being forced to be apart, which I think a lot of people can relate to at the moment. Some people might feel a bit offended by the title, but it really isn’t this anti-religion statement. It’s simply a symbol of the helplessness I was feeling in my life at the time — that feeling like life is laid out for you whether you like it or not.”

23 | Duke Sims & Crystalla Gonzales | 2012

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Duke Sims from the well-known group Shinobi Ninja and Crystalla Gonzalez from No Grudges, a funk-punk rock duo, bring their heart and soul into 2012. They truly make the song come to life. “2012 is dedicated to a friend who attempted suicide. With COVID rampant, we wanted to write a song for him and all of the people out there struggling with mental health issues. Just being there as a friend or family member and calling someone you love can make all of the difference in the world.”

24 | Sonic Flower | Earthquake

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Japan’s most psychedelic rockers Sonic Flower (with members of Church Of Misery) unveil a second track from theirsophomore album Rides Again, due out Jan. 22. “This track you are listening to is a cover of the mighty Graham Central Station, led by Larry Graham — a slap-bass pioneer, also involved with Miles Davis! We turnt this song into noisy heavy rock.”

25 | Kiey | Up to You

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Based in the heart of Vietnam, electro-pop artist Kiey has released the atmospheric, dreamy Up To You, from his album Night to Myself. Up To You is the perfect introduction to an artist whose music transcends culture and will hit home with listeners wherever they are. Night to Myself is a stunning mix of melancholic electro textures and Kiey’s vocals.”

26 | Sleepwoka | Together We Are

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “London-based Ukrainian producer and songwriter Sleepwoka returns with another poignant single enthused with uplifting electro-pop soundscapes. In a time when many of us are feeling disconnected physically from our friends, family and loved ones, Sleepwoka reflects on the resilience of true friendship even if we are spread far and wide. He explains: “Together We Are is a tribute to all my friends that are scattered around the world. Although we live different lives and rarely see each other, it feels like the invisible connection only grows stronger.”