Indie Roundup | 72 Songs For Your Weekend Playlist (Part 1)

Little Bird, Space Cadet, Rotten Mind, FYI Chris, Baest and more who came to play.

Little Bird would like you to meet a killer babe, Space Cadet have a run of bad luck, Rotten Mind are ready to rat you out, FYI Chris salute the scum — and we’re just reaching first base in a typically super-sized Weekend Roundup. Let’s get right to the action:


1 | Little Bird | Mega Hot Super Babe

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Charleston quintet Little Bird are here with a retro-horror flick-style video, as they fall to the demise of one Mega Hot Super Babe. Infectious, glittering guitar riffs contrast the gory scenes and serve as the perfect prelude to the release their first EP of a three-part series, Alpha, on on Feb. 12. “While the song itself is about the archetype of the untouchable woman, the video is meant to highlight a struggle that some women we know have dealt with, by fantasizing an ideological solution,” says frontman Jay Hurtt. “Working with a limited budget, we drew inspiration from ’80s budget-slasher style Giallo films, and loved the juxtaposition of a happy song with gruesome visuals.” When recalling how the song came about, Hurtt explains, “It happened over breakfast one day with some friends. A conversation came up about a former situation I had caught myself in when I realized I had been waiting in line and sort of ‘taking a number’ to go out with this girl. She had done it all in a classy way, you know? It wasn’t sleazy, it was just really smooth. It occurred to me how invincible it must feel to live with that style of blind confidence. We thought about what such a life might feel like, floating through lavish meals dates every other night, doing whatever one feels like doing because that would be the life of a Mega Hot Super Babe.”

2 | Space Cadet | Bad Luck

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Space Cadet happened by accident. Friends of almost 25 years, Dave Walsh and Matt Hock had each been writing and recording eerily similar songs, completely oblivious to each other’s work. What’s all the more surprising is that it wasn’t the punk of The Explosion, the band they formed together with friends in 1998. Instead, the music was indicative of other sounds they’re into — post-punk, new wave, Brit Rock — not to mention their shared obsession with guitar pedals. From their respective homes of Clinton, Mass., and Brooklyn, Dave and Matt have created lush soundscapes, dark synth dirges and anxious anthems. What started as an accident is now on purpose. The album Lion On A Leash arrives March 26.”

3 | Rotten Mind | City Rats

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Punk outfit Rotten Mind premieres a music video for the opening track of their latest studio full-length Rat City Dog Boy from 2020. The music video for City Rats was filmed and edited by Daniel Wiberg. Rotten Mind have released four studio albums: I’m Alone Even With You (2015), Rotten Mind (2017) and Fading into Oblivion (2018), and Rat City Dog Boy, their 2020 release. Rat City Dog Boy consists of 11 captivating post-punk tracks pierced by Rotten Minds’ unique songwriting style and sense for melodies.”

4 | FYI Chris | Scum Of The Earth (ft. Thick Richard)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Announcing the debut FYI Chris LP Earth Scum with the new single and video for Scum of the Earth, featuring the inimitable punk poet (and Watson’s uncle) Thick Richard. Not for the faint of heart!”

5 | Baest | Necro Sapiens

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Denmark’s premium death metal powerhouse Baest release the video for Necro Sapiens, the third single and title track off their upcoming album. “Escaping the creeping death of COVID-19, Baest decided to bring the audience along, to a cleansing real experience of the after/pre-show shenanigans (The truth may differ, intoxication-wise. No one remembers anymore). “Enjoy the video and watch some real necro sapiens in action — brain-dead and thriving,” state Baest. “Bred by the elite, necro sapiens roam the earth. Soulless beings dictated at the hands of the Czar. Subjects of autopsies and meathook massacres for entertainment, these lifeless reprobates have only each other. They are one, they are none.”

6 | Vertex | Following Arrows

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “About two years after the official release of their debut EP Scalable, French math-metal/progressive/mathcore engineers Vertex premiered a single called Following Arrows. Vertex release uncompromising organic music that tends to move away from gender codes. Each member has a world of his own and comes from different bands, like Bottle Next (hard folk), Shelter (radioactive mathrock prog), ça (math-rock) or FoSS (metal). Gathered around influences like Meshuggah, The Dillinger Escape Plan or Animals As Leaders, the band from Lyon proves to every handbanger, but also to everyone else, that metal kept all its madness and strength.”

7 | Mind Power | Mess

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “In the midst of a pandemic winter, dive into the depths of Mind Power frontman Robert Meadows’ mind on a bleak journey through darkness and snow in an almost tortured existence beyond dealing with the daily reality of Covid. Written before the pandemic, Mess could have easily been a diatribe on the daily life we’ve all come to know all too well the past over the past year, yet here we are. Featuring vocals from ex-A Life Once Lost frontman Meadows and a lineup that includes former members of Ligeia, Dead End Path and Bring the Heat, Self Torture features guest appearances from notable metal standouts like Norma Jean’s Cory Brandan, Darkest Hour’s John Henry and Michael Schleibaum, The Red Chord’s Mike McKenzie and Most Precious Blood’s Rob Fusco, just to name a few.”

8 | Cryptosis | Transendence

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Dutch metal trio Cryptosis release a video for Transcendence, produced by Aimed & Framed. They explain: “In 2149 it is possible to purchase digital thoughts, knowledge and talents from a deceased person. The term “self-investment” has shifted to a whole different kind of perspective. People can now enhance their mind to be more creative and smarter beyond their wildest dreams. This all comes at a price, since the new technology is so addictive that society can’t live without it anymore. Mankind has become the host … of a parasite.”

9 | Cellar Twins | Selfear

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Belgian melodic rockers Cellar Twins are re-releasing their highly acclaimed album Duality today. To celebrate the event, the band are also sharing the video Selfear, a punchy song that questions the fact of being versus pretending to be, as well as the difference between what is shown and what is felt. It’s about living underneath a mask and the irreversible damages it can create. A combination of 10 infectious hook-laden tracks that blends raging modern instrumentals with powerful yet clear vocals, Duality can be enjoyed by everyone from laidback rockers to full-on metalheads.”

10 | Mara | Born To Die

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Swedish misty metal outfit Mara unleash the single and video for Born to Die, a track taken from their upcoming album Djävulstoner due for release on March 12.”

11 | Mystery Rose | Stability

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Mystery Rose is a young voice with mature taste. The teenage indie-pop artist from L.A. is preparing to release her debut album Socially Distant in 2021 — the title refers to both the recording process in quarantine and her elusive personality. She released a couple of standalone tracks in 2020 (Sunset Boulevard and Passing Notes), but the first official single from Socially Distant is Stability. She says: “Lyrically, it’s about relationships. Whether you leave someone or you get left, you still feel vulnerable, like someone took away your stability — not just with them, but for future beaus! Breakups have a lasting effect on everyone, no matter which side they are on.”

12 | Maluma | 7 Dias en Jamaica

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Global Latin music idol Maluma celebrated his 27th birthday yesterday by surprising fans with the release of the new visual album #7DJ (7 Days in Jamaica). The project consists of seven interconnected songs and videos which take us on an audio-visual journey as Maluma explores the heart of Jamaica, letting go of the trappings of fame and connecting with a new reality, renewed by the island through its people, music, and spirit of freedom. He says: “Those seven days in Jamaica came at a time when I needed to escape and decompress as I had intensely worked non-stop on my career for seven years … causing me to question if I should even continue doing music. I did a lot of soul-searching and came back a different person, completely inspired and having realized that music is not just what I do, it’s part of who I am; how I experience and interpret life.”

13 | Gramps Morgan | Runaway Bay

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Three-time Grammy-winning artist Gramps Morgan announces the release of the music video for Runaway Bay and an acoustic rendition of the song. Said Morgan, “Runaway Bay is my love letter to Jamaica. It’s about a yearning for home that everyone can relate to Turn it up, close your eyes and you’ll almost feel the sun on your face and sand beneath your feet.’’

14 | Michaela Slinger | Make You Sad

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “B.C. indie-pop artist Michaela Slinger debuts the video for Make You Sad. The video follows a mother who is coming to terms with her station in life and who is reflecting on her relationship with her grown daughter. She has packed some mementos from years gone by and checks into a motel, where she plans to stay for some time until she finds the courage to go see their family home for the last time. Says Slinghter: “I play a supporting role throughout the video that remind the protagonist of her younger self, and of the more general obsession we have with youth in our popular culture. The video builds to a breaking point in the final chorus, which calls my character’s entire existence into question and finds the protagonist owning her story and making peace with her past.”

15 | Serena Ryder | Better Now

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Six-time Juno winner Serena Ryder will release her new album The Art of Falling Apart on March 12. The 10-track project chronicles Serena’s years of struggle with mental health, and her journey from mental illness to mental wellness. Serena also shares the single and video for Better Now, which details the story of how she became sober. Serena explains, “Life has kicked my ass in so many ways, but I wouldn’t change a thing — because it wouldn’t’ have changed me. I’m at a time in my life where I can see the beauty that comes from sitting in the uncomfortable moments. I used to smoke and drink through pain, now I know there’s a better way. Being sober is the bravest thing I’ve ever done and life is so much sweeter every day. I know better now.”

16 | Kaleigh | Weather The Storm

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Los Angeles artist Kaleigh has announced the release of her debut rock/alternative album Predestined on March 5. Style-wise as well as lyrically, this album takes a brave leap from her prior pop leanings, one that Kaleigh credits to ‘coming of age’. The timely lead single Weather the Storm “is a song that was written to call attention to the tumultuous emotions that were felt throughout the United States during 2020 and echoed throughout the world. This is a sign to the public that as we embark on our journey through 2021, we must unite and stand together in order to reach progress. Spread love and compassion, take my hand and let’s stand together!”

17 | Shane Pendergast | It Slips Away

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Shane Pendergast is a folk singer from Tracadie Cross, P.E.I. Shane’s connection to Maritime folk music dates back to the efforts of his great-grandparents, preservers of folklore in P.E.I. Shane is carrying the torch forward with his own songs, having released his debut album Place to the Name in 2020. He’s now following up with the single It Slips Away, paired with a video. He elaborates: “Shortly after the track was recorded, I received the word that a close friend of mine passed away. The song is about loss, so it took on an added meaning. The music video footage is from a show I played at Toronto’s TRANZAC Main Hall. That was the last night that I saw my friend Alex. I find it surreal to look back at the footage of him, not to mention the big crowd that was gathered.”

18 | Mustafa Khetty | Cry For Freedom

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Cry for Freedom is new single from Morpheus Project and Mustafa Khetty, the expansive prog and classical project which has been wowing audiences across the musical spectrum. It is the final track before the release of the debut album Mozaick in March. Cry for Freedom is a return to Khetty’s other great love, classical music and features some stunning virtuoso piano playing from Matias Chapiro, cello from Manuel Villar Lifac, Arda Keremoğlu on guitar, Gustavo Eiriz on violin, keyboard/synthesizer and programming by Sebastian Fahey, and vocals from Zilan Küçükbalaban. The hugely emotional piece is written as a tribute to the Bosnian women and children who suffered the most during the conflict facing incredulous brutality, torment and loss of their loved ones.”