Indie Roundup | 45 Songs You Need Inside Your Earholes This Tuesday (Part 1)

Dez Dare, Sorry, Black Pistol Fire, Mercy Kills & more acts start the weekday party.


Dez Dare dumbs it down for you, Sorry roll ’em up and pull ’em apart, Black Pistol Fire go off the beaten track, Mercy Kills remain upright — and they’re just the appetizers in your all-you-can-eat Tuesday Roundup. Belly up to the buffet:


1 | Dez Dare | Dumb Dumb Dumb

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Built in the crystalline shadows and existential backwaters of the psyche, Dez Dare constructs psych-hymn soft-punk that punches you in the brain while tenderly calling you to inaction. No other time calls for expression more than times of suppression. Trapped, caught in reclusion under the germs’ eye, Darren Smallman built a Frankenstein’s Monster within his house. Bolted together with old pedals, guitars and synths, a collection of tracks were produced that muse on existence, social normality and the illusion of reality, the first fruits of which can be heard today in the contorted shape amid flashing dayglo colours of new single Dumb Dumb Dumb, lifted from the forthcoming new album Hairline Ego Trip, due this June 4. “I have a strong distaste for nationalism,” says Darren. “I want to push against entrenched views, closed borders and minds of large groups of the human race. There are a lot of fights happening at present around the world from climate to right-wing hysteria to unfettered capitalism and we need to work together as an animal of the same kind rather than separated by space, colour and tradition.”

2+3 | Sorry | Cigarette Packet + Separate

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “North London’s Sorry share two singles — Cigarette Packet and Separate — and videos for each by Flasha Prod. (Sorry’s Asha Lorenz and longtime collaborator Flo Webb). The first new music to emerge from Sorry since their sensational debut album 925 last year, Cigarette Packet and Separate find the band delving back into a more experimental, cut-and-paste electronic palette, while still coursing with their signature gnarled sensitivity. Lorenz said, “These songs came from ideas we worked on from home during last year. The sounds are quite metallic / silver/ grey and the lyrical ideas are repetitive almost as if they are whispers/ mantras/ worries that you’d say to yourself and keep to yourself.”

4 | Black Pistol Fire | Look Alive

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Austin rock group Black Pistol Fire share the video for the first single and title track from their recent album Look Alive. Directed by collaborator Pooneh Ghana and shot on location in Austin, the video revolves around the main character’s fantasy of leaving behind everything they have ever known in the pursuit of the dark unknown. As the clip progresses, the driver heads down a dark highway and strange supernatural things begin to escalate around the car as the driver transitions into a different path in life and a new world.”

5 | The Mercy Kills | Like You

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “The latest video by Australian hard rockers The Mercy Kills is for their track Like You, featured on the 2020 release X celebrating the band’s 10 years together. This clip has been specifically designed in vertical format, so no need to spin that cell. There’s even a bit of a tease during the guitar solo. TMK wanted the video to express a connection between each band member. The concept was influenced by the old children’s panel books, where you turn the pages to reveal a mix of different heads, bodies and legs.”

6 | Frankie & His Fingers | Sad To Let You Down Like This

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Hudson Valley band Frankie & His Fingers will release their album Universal Hurt on March 26. As a final preview, they share the single Sad To Let You Down Like This. Frank McGinnis says, “The track confronts the disappointments and consolations of adulthood. It’s a song about the boundaries of self-reflection, the tricky line between healthy self-critique and indulgent neurosis. It started as a demo with a single guitar, vocal, and hand claps but was itching to become the jaunty number it is now.”

7 | L’Orange & Namir Blade | Corner Store Scandal

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:L’Orange & Namir Blade’s upcoming album Imaginary Everything (May 7) is a sleek and versatile disc whose artistic vision walks the line between reality and imagination. Inspired by Woodstock energy, Foxey Lady, James Brown’s The Big Payback & modern underground, Imaginary Everything is a journey and an experience. It channels the spirit of the old with the experiences of modernity. A departure from the nostalgic, narrative-driven records from L’Orange, Imaginary Everything is a collection of songs which are individually experiential. Corner Store Scandal is the first single. Blade says: “I wrote this song after making an exuberant purchase at a corner store, sometimes you just have to allow the mundane to be extravagant.”

8 | Denm | Fallin’

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Southern California singer-songwriter Denm has released the video for his single Fallin’, off his forthcoming debut album Slum Beach Denny, out later this year. “Fallin’ was a song I wrote about telling my girl how I felt about her in the car at the airport right before I moved to Hawaii,” reveals Denm. “It was like, man this timing is crazy, but this is how I feel and I hope you feel it too, anyways have a good summer, bye! It’s just an honest song about the girl I love. We’re still in love so it must have worked!”

9 | Major Funk | Slippin’

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Major Funk are set to traverse the Canadian North toward worldwide acclaim with the release of their debut album Is That You? on Friday. Band founder Étienne Girard says, “Together we make old school music with a modern spin.” Major Funk is inspired by traditional 1970s funk bands such as Chic, modern pop, and new funk musicians like Vulf Peck, Ripe and Cory Wong. Years of research and development, both in studio and on the road, have refined the band’s sound into something familiar but fresh, epic yet accessible. Is That You? represents an evolution from Major Funk’s previous music, taking shape through a very intentional journey.”

10 | Tearjerker | Deep End

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto’s Tearjerker will release their latest EP Deep End this Friday. In anticipation, the band share the video for the title-track single. Micah Bonte says, “Deep End was birthed as an improvised riff at a crowded (pre-COVID) housewarming party in 2019. It’s the sort of creative moment that’s usually lost to time and hazy memories. But after discovering a friend’s Instagram story that captured the riff, we were able to use it as a foundation to build a classic Tearjerker song that feels like it should be rolling over the end credits of a movie.”

11 | Fiddlehead | Million Times

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Fiddlehead — the punk powerhouse featuring members of Have Heart, Basement and more — just announced their second album Between The Richness. Due out May 21, it finds Fiddlehead expanding on their dynamic blend of hardcore energy and undeniable melody, crafting their most immediate set of songs to date. Each track bursts with Revolution Summer grit, massive hooks, and vocalist Pat Flynn’s deeply thoughtful and open-hearted lyrics. Fiddlehead have shared the album’s anthemic first single Million Times. The song is the perfect introduction to the album’s sing-along-ready choruses and compelling words, and a statement of intent on their return.”

12 | Paul Jacobs | Day to Day

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Montreal musician Paul Jacobs returns with Day to Day, the third beautiful single from his upcoming album Pink Dogs on the Green Grass, out April 30. Carried by powerful drums, the single delves into a profoundly lush and dreamy atmosphere where Jacobs’ nonchalant voice blends with hypnotic guitars and a mesmerizing flute, creating a melody reminiscent of Kurt Vile, Cass McCombs and early Beck. “This song was inspired by a trip with my friends during which we played at a festival near a river out in the woods. The experience stuck with us as one of the greatest times in our lives,” explains Jacobs. “The song is a reminder to live for today and shoot for your dreams.”

13 | The Natvral | Sun Blisters

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Kip Berman, former singer-songwriter of The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, shares the video for Sun Blisters, the third single from his debut solo album as The Natvral. The album, Tethers, is due on April 2. Berman says: “It’s a song about how you don’t always want what’s for the best — and neither do I.”

14 | The Dogs | Under The Coast (ft. Frank Meyer)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Underground punk legends The Dogs have unleashed a video for their new single Under The Coast, co-written with and featuring fellow rock ’n’ roller Frank Meyer (The Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs, James Williamson & The Pink Hearts) on vocals and guitar. The socially conscious, topical song deals with the chaos and dissonance of modern times.”

15 | Aeonblack | The Phantom Of Pain

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After the release of the second album from the south German heavy / power metallers of Aeonblack, The Time Will Come, the band just released a video for the track The Phantom Of Pain. The Time Will Come features 11 tracks of traditional heavy metal with powerful, raw and sophisticated arrangements.”

16 | As The Palaces Burn | All The Evil

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “With a balance between aggressive sound, melodies and instrumental variety, the heavy metal band As The Palaces Burn continue to promote the EP All the Evil with a video for the title track. “We believe that this new video work presents the essence of the group. And that comes to promote the dissemination of our music to all corners,” said vocalist Alyson Garcia. “The entire psychic transition addressed by music is further enhanced by this video clip. The moment when we humans reached the limit and became something we could never even imagine.”

17 | Sulene | Identity Crisis

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Fresh off the release of her new EP he•don•ic, South African-born, Brooklyn-based artist Sulene has shared a video for her single Identity Crisis. Through colorful effects and distortions, the video depicts how she perceives herself based on her frame of mind. The song itself is an indie meets electro-pop number highlighted by industrial-esque beats and synths. Says Sulene: “Whenever I’m having an identity crisis my perception of myself is filtered through whatever mood I’m in. This inspired the creation of the music video for “identity crisis” — I wanted to show myself through different distortions, color-grading, and with violent edits between facial expressions.”

18 | Felix Cartal | Happy Hour (ft. Kiiara)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Taelor Deitcher (aka Felix Cartal) and Kiiara are sharing their latest creation — the video for Happy Hour, directed by Kasey Lum. Felix Cartal tells us: “Kasey and I have been making videos together since the beginning of both of our artistic careers. I believe the first thing we did was around 2011, possibly even earlier. I always feel fortunate that I’m able to create art for a living, but it’s even better to create art with your friends for a living. That being said, the hardest part of videos is getting them to match the mood of the song, and I feel like this one does that better than anything we’ve done before.”

19 | Aoife O’Donovan | Transatlantic (ft. Kris Drever)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Grammy-winning artist Aoife O’Donovan shares her new single Transatlantic, featuring Kris Drever. Aoife says: “I started writing Transatlantic many years ago after one of my frequent trips across the pond. The lyric started as a classic love song, but it became something different. I felt strangely moved by the nostalgia and longing for camaraderie, innocently described by my pre-pandemic self. As I finished the tune in January of this year — feeling certain of nothing but the uncertainty of these times — I immediately began to hear the voice of Kris Drever, a friend based in Glasgow. The refrain references the old classic Loch Lomond, a ‘song from another time,’ Raise a glass. We will be together again soon.”

20 | Crimson Riot | St. James’s Gate

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day, Crimson Riot have released a folky punk-infused single and video for St. James’s Gate. “There’s nothing quite like a good Irish drinking song and St. James’s Gate is ours,” the Las Vegas trio say. “It’s a feel-good tune about hanging out with your friends in the land of emerald hills and the home of Guinness Irish Stout. We haven’t been to Ireland yet but if we ever get the chance you may have to pull us out of there kicking and screaming. We hope this song makes you want to raise a glass with your best mates. Sláinte!”

21 | Nick Hudson | Come Back When There’s Nothing Left (ft. Toby Driver)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Brighton singer-songwriter Nick Hudson presents Come Back When There’s Nothing Left, the title track from his new EP. The stunning video, which features vocals by Toby Driver (Kayo Dot), was directed by Scottish novelist Ewan Morrison. “Come Back When There’s Nothing Left is a song about taking responsibility for one’s spiritual and moral decisions, and reducing to ascribe them to extant agents or systems. We have more resources and capacity for endurance than we may realize. And to regard ourselves as something separate or distinct from nature itself is a dangerous supposition, and one we’d be healthier and happier not making.”

22 | Bantunani | Lonely Tear

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Lonely Tear refers to the tears of a soul which, in an intimate camera, bares pain and tears the heart. With unexpected accents of sincerity and a grain of voice that feels all the wound of the love wound, Bantunani delivers us a deep confession tinged with loneliness. It is an almost abandoned singer that the clip shows us, reduced to recreating at home the fires of the stage thanks to an illuminated microphone and a useless guitar, but the distraught gaze and the naked torso betray a moment of delusion and pain.”