Indie Roundup | 42 Ways To Keep Wednesday Weird (Part 2)

Morcheeba, Ainur, Arogya, Queen Mars, Tytus and more weird, wonderful treats.

Morcheeba work blue, Ainur steal Tolkien’s fire, Quiet Canyons have a panic attack, Nick Batterham admits his failings, Anya Marina makes a double play — and those are just a few of the goodies in the second half of your bulbous Midweek Roundup. I got an email today from a publicist thanking me for sharing his client’s video — back in November. There’s money well spent!


22 | Morcheeba | Sounds Of Blue

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Morcheeba share Sounds Of Blue, the first single from their upcoming studio album Blackest Blue, due May 14. Pioneers of the British music scene, Blackest Blue, will be the band’s 10th studio album in a discography that spans three decades. 2020 saw Morcheeba unable to tour or perform live, which gave Skye Edwards and Ross Godfrey “time to write songs and really get to hone them,” as Godfrey puts it. Adds Edwards: “There weren’t so many pressures so we could really take our time getting the songs right.”

23 | Ainur | Spirit of Fire

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “It’s been 17 years since Ainur transformed J.R.R. Tolkien’s masterpiece The Silmarillion into music. They return to his work for War of The Jewels, due March 19. Today, they share the first single Spirit of Fire. The band add: “Spirit of Fire is the most iconic track on the album, because it deals with one of the greatest characters that Tolkien has ever invented: Fëanor, the mightiest of Elves. He has a spirit of fire and in this song; Luca (that is the main composer of this one) had the same spirit. Big guitar riffs, chords, and progressions, but also choirs and melodies that are one of Luca’s most characteristic styles … We are sure it will become an Ainur masterpiece in the next years!”

24 | Quiet Canyons | Panicked Mistakes

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Following the release of single We Overflow, Quiet Canyons, a.k.a. singer-songwriter Tim Willams, has shared Panicked Mistakes. The song is an on-edge acoustic number centered around working through self-doubt. Williams is able to make an acoustic guitar sound heavy, a nice juxtaposition to his soft-toned vocals. It can be found on Quiet Canyons’ upcoming self-titled album set for release on Feb. 12. Williams stated: “This is a song about not trusting your own judgment during hard times. Knowing that self-doubt can be crippling and trying to work through it however you can.”

25 | Nick Batterham | No Perfect Man

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Nick Batterham’s beautiful No Perfect Man is the first single of his forthcoming album Lovebirds, coming out this April. Nick’s undeniable fervour for composing immersive, visceral atmospherics is again paramount on No Perfect Man. “The song mourns a love not given enough time to grow. It reflects upon modern relationships and how we construct ideals that undermine our own happiness. Parallel to this, looking inward, there is a constant desire to be a better person. That can cause us to under-appreciate our already positive attributes. How good is good enough?”

26+27 | Anya Marina | Pretty Vacant + Notice Me

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Singer-songwriter Anya Marina announces the Feb. 19 release of her album Live and Alone in New York. On this sparse and entertaining release, Marina expertly toggles between her acoustic and electric guitar and grand piano. The first pre-release single is Notice Me, originally from her album Felony Flats. Notice Me debuted along with the official video for Pretty Vacant, from Anya’s most recent studio album Queen Of The Night.”

28 | Arogya | Broken

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Hailing from Assam, India, Arogya present you their first single Broken, taken from the upcoming album Genesis, out April 23. Arogya are the first synth-rock band to emerge from India. Genesis deals with the story of creation: Past manifests itself in their propulsive synth-rock that creates an eighties nostalgia feeling, while washed-out metal dominates the present and a fine pinch of dark pop stands for the future and is a true feast for the senses — from the sound as visually, as the video of the first single release Broken proves. “Broken is about two lovers lost and separated, their yearning and arduous journey to find a way back to be in each other’s arms again.”

29 | Queen Mars | Boys Like You

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Neo-soul pop artist Queen Mars has announced her debut EP Trust Issues is due April 9. Today, she shared the first single and video, Boys Like You. A brutal exposé on her ex, she sings about the red flags and clear indicators of a non-committal man. Brianna Brock, also known as Queen Mars, said, “Boys Like You is an anthem for all women who #selflove and #selfcared their way through quarantine and want to reemerge as the bad bitches they are.”

30 | TruCarr & Rich the Kid | Lose My Mind

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Rising Watts rapper TruCarr releases the video for Lose My Mind with Atlanta rapper Rich the Kid. TruCarr’s single will be a part of his upcoming debut project Based On a Tru Story, out in March. In the mind-bending visual directed by LOUIEKNOWS, Tru and Rich the Kid go on a journey through extravagant L.A. mansions, churches, and trippy hallucinations where beautiful women dance in body paint.”

31 | Minutian | Magical Thinking

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The Finnish pioneers of progressive rock, Minutian, will release their upcoming album Magical Thinking on March 12. It is the band’s third full-length and showcases the group’s updated and matured sound, obtained through five years of development. The album’s third single and title cut is a special fusion of genres — electronic music played with traditional band instruments. It manages to be a catchy snack made with a pop formula — as well as the most difficult song to play on the entire upcoming album.”

32 | Tytus | Fistful of Sand

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Italian heavy metal band Tytus are back in studio to track some brand new stuff after their hit 2019 full-length Rain After Drought. Fistful Of Sand is their new single and was mixed and mastered by Olof Wikstrand (Enforcer) in his Hvergelmer Music Studio in Arvika, Sweden.”

33 | Griffin Moonstone | Here Right Now (ft. Shae Lane & Willsteezalot)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Alternative songwriter/producer Griffin Moonstone just released Here Right Now (ft. Shae Lane & Willsteezalot). Here Right Now is the second single from his upcoming debut album House of Mirrors, due Feb. 1. The track fuses layers of hip hop, pop, and jazz to create his unique signature sound.”

34 | Saprobiontic | Biological Invaders

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Apocalyptic Retribution is the second album by Dresden death metallers Saprobiontic and will be released on Feb. 19. Apocalyptic Retribution features 10 tracks of finest brutal death metal, peppered with blast beats, a hard-hitting guitar sound and a lot of groove. Since the band does not have a permanent drummer at the moment, none other than Michiel van der Plicht (Pestilence, ex-God Dethroned) was recruited for this task. Listen to the first single Biological Invaders.”

35 | Jack Omstead | AEIOU

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Up-and-coming Toronto popster ​Jack Omstead brings us his joyous and catchy AEIOU. Self-produced and self-recorded, with bright synths and bass hits, it bounces along, led by Jack’s positive vocals. “​AEIOU is a happy, pop project filled with clever wordplay relating to feelings of youthful love,” he explains. “As the opening line says: ‘AEIOU, even vowels know I need U.’ ”

36 | Lemon Cash | Wine Tonight

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “When life hands you lemons, make lemonade. Ottawa brothers Cory and Jeff Papineau live by this saying. So much so that they named their band Lemon Cash. After three years of playing as a five-piece alt-rock cover band, the brothers made the transition into the world of country. Wine Tonight is the first single from Lemon Cash’s forthcoming album. Written by Jeff, Cory, and Jeff Dalziel (who also produced the single), it’s upbeat, hook driven, and sure to have you singing along while craving a cold margarita on a tropical beach.”

37 | The Prairie States | High That I’m Riding

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Mixing the cadence and rhythms of ’60s soul and ’70s rock with modern country, The Prairie States were born out of a desire to put a fresh touch on a classic design. With a stack of recordings completed and more underway with CCMA and Juno winner Bart McKay, they show no signs of slowing down. The Prairie States’ latest single, High That I’m Riding, is a euphoric country rocker that gallops headfirst towards the indescribable feelings that only the one you love can ignite inside of you. The track continues to showcase the band’s unique take on modern country music.”

38 | Julie Neff | Swagger

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto artist Julie Neff celebrates her birthday in style with her EP Over It. The single Swagger “is a song about how we sometimes use our external expression to hide our own insecurities,” shares Neff. “Charm and shimmer on the outside can be a mask that we wear, armour to defend ourselves against the vulnerabilities of romantic connection.”

39 | Peter Drucker | Jim and Pam

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Youthful and ambitious, singer-songwriter Peter Drucker burst on to the scene in 2018, with an armory of tracks ranging from guitar-driven synth-pop to string-centered ballads; all aided by a uniquely soulful voice and a dominant sense of groove. His single Jim and Pam, is named after The Office’s dynamic duo — though Drucker admits he’s never watched an episode. Having originally written the lyric ‘we can drive ‘round these streets like we’re Bonnie and Clyde,’ Drucker made a simple swap with the modern-day version Jim and Pam.”

40 | Buggin | Brainfreeze

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The relatively new Chicago hardcore group Buggin release their EP Brainfreeze on Friday, but you can hear the title track today. Formed in 2018, Buggin are keeping hardcore fun. The young quartet quickly made a name for themselves with inescapable grooves and sneering energy. Originally known as Buggin Out, they took it upon themselves to play the type of straight-up hardcore they found lacking in their scene. Founded on a shared love of Rzl Dzl, Bad Brains, Mental and Beastie Boys, they definitely do not take themselves too seriously.”

41 | William Bishop | The Night In Your Eyes

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The exciting and sincere William Bishop releases his folk beauty The Night In Your Eyes, a wonderfully simple acoustic track. Stripped back to musical essentials, guitar and voice duet in harmony. Though its plucks are complex, there is a raw energy in the guitar part, and Bishop’s vocals are heartfelt and poignant. “The song is about a relationship,” he explains, “a way of describing what happens between two people.”

42 | Dust Bowl Faeries | Ibex (FK Remix)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “New York dark carnival-inspired indie-rock band Dust Bowl Faeries have released a pop remix of Ibex from their recent sophomore album The Plague Garden.Ibex is a song about the extinct Pyrenean Ibex, which scientists ‘resurrected’ in a laboratory for seven minutes through DNA cloning,” says bandleader Ryder Cooley. Longtime band collaborator Floyd Fisher put modern electronic beats and haunting synth touches on his pop remix, which Ryder says, “gives the song a gothic hip-hop vibe.” She adds, “I love working with Floyd; you never know what he will come up with and I really enjoy that element of surprise.”