Indie Roundup | 57 Songs To Overload Your Circuitry This Wednesday (Part 1)

W!zard, Nick Waterhouse, Dead Nature, Early Mornings & the rest of today's openers.

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W!zard make no bones about it, Nick Waterhouse has the cure for what ails you, Dead Nature rock you like a hurricane, The Early Mornings belong to the blank generation, Mogwai hit the ceiling — and they’re not the only name you’ll recognize in your latest Midweek Roundup. What can I say? This is the place to be.

 


1 | W!zard | Bones

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “French post-punk noise rockers W!zard’s new EP Definitely Unfinished is coming out on June 4. The band bring the appetizer Bones to the table: an ironic video blending desolated soundscapes and savage riffs! The Bordeaux trio have found their own musical signature by associating hot-tempered vocals, pounding drums and a howling guitar. The result is a perfect sonic balance between post-hardcore troupe Daughters and Metz’s no wave stomp. With Bones, W!zard showcase the suffocating side of the daily routine, expressing both problem and way out by mean of powerful vocal onslaughts and truthful post-punk guitars.”


2 | Nick Waterhouse | Medicine

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “L.A. troubadour Nick Waterhouse takes a spiritual look to the past on new album Promenade Blue, due out this Friday. Today, he debuts a sultry video for Medicine, a retro vignette peeking into the seemingly mundane yet lush life of two lovers. The track features lower-than-low gospel chants and refrains by The Sensational Barnes Brothers, who lend both energy and emotional weight to Nick’s swaggering vocal stylings. In Nick’s musical and lyrical world, blue is a refraction of his life and memories — shadowing a deep, spiritual San Francisco that fostered his musical vocabulary but has now been stamped out irrevocably; evoking the endless tours, marathon recording sessions, and highs and lows of success he’s experienced in his decade-long career; conjuring romances that were doomed, loves that lingered, and hope for future days of parity and partnership; summoning spirits of people who have gone but permeate his mind forever.”


3 | Dead Nature | Hurricane

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Dead Nature, the solo project of former Spring King singer and prolific producer Tarek Musa, has announced his debut album Watch Me Break Apart and shared the video for Hurricane. It ponders the innocence of youth, the decisions made by older generations, and how these are affecting the young. Tarek elaborates: “I’ve never been good at being overtly political, I don’t feel smart enough with words to express myself to the level some do, but the song for me was a nudge in that direction. It was a bit of a homage to Whole Wide World by Wreckless Eric, with its very brittle and simple guitar intro. It’s a little naïve in its delivery at times, tongue in cheek like The B-52’s and full of energy with the edge of a late ’70s Clash song. Like a train picking up speed, I wanted to keep up the momentum of the message to the song and didn’t want many moments of respite.”


4 | The Early Mornings | Blank Sky

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Early Mornings are a trio formed in Manchester in 2018, made up of Annie Leader (Guitar/Vocals), Danny Shannon (Bass) and Rhys Davies (Drums). Today they share the gritty post-punk track Blank Sky. It sits with the likes of Dry Cleaning, Cate Le Bon, Mush and Porridge Radio. It comes with a candid video that shows the genuine streets and skies of Manchester, the perfect backdrop for the wiry guitars and deadpan vocals. It comes from their debut EP Unnecessary Creation, which arrives June 18. Annie says: “The colour palette, composition and lighting of the video all mix to create a dullness; a mundane reality which is interposed with artistic references, flashes of colour and surrealism. This is an idea which extends throughout our music as well.”


5 | Mogwai | Ceiling Granny

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Mogwai unveil the video for Ceiling Granny, the third single from their latest album As The Love Continues. The video was filmed and edited by award-winning filmmaker/skateboarder Jon Miner and features a mixture of Super8 and 16mm footage shot by Jon between 1995-2010.”


6 | Lou Barlow | Over You

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After decades on the road and the never-ending hustle of life as an artist, Lou Barlow has tapped into a new confidence in the chaos. In 2021, the concept of balance feels particularly intimidating. Now more than ever, it’s clear life isn’t just leveling out a pair of responsibilities. Instead, we’re chasing after a flock of different ideals with a butterfly net. On Barlow’s new solo album Reason to Live, he has come to an understanding of that swirl rather than trying to contain it. Reason to Live is shambolic and grand yet intimate and doting, warmly acoustic and crackling with grit. “I had been struggling for a way to connect both my home life and my recorded life, but this record is the first time I’ve integrated that,” Barlow says. By folding the many facets of his life into one package, Reason to Live radiates with a renewed balance and calm. “People have this vision of me as this heartbroken, depressed guy, but this record feels so true to who I am, to this rich life I now have full of people I love. The songs culminated over the last five years to show that music has returned to its central comforting role in my life. Now I’m home.”


7 | Portugal. The Man | Lay Me Back Down

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Portugal. The Man recently announced the April 16 release of their Oregon City Sessions live album. Today they share a second helping from the set with the video for Lay Me Back Down. “Lay Me Back Down was the first song on Censored Colors,” says singer/guitarist John Gourley. “It was such an important song for us because we had finished our deal … and recorded this all on our own. It represents the freedom we created by doing it ourselves.”


8 | Useless ID | Same Old Revolution

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “No foolin’ around! Today, we’re rolling out a new song and video by Useless ID! Same Old Revolution is one of two newly minted tracks that will be available on their upcoming “best of” album Most Useless Songs, out on May 7. The Israeli punks have been together since 1994, releasing eight full-lengths and a slew of EPs, singles, and compilations. Most Useless Songs is described by vocalist and bass player Yotam Ben-Horin as “songs that work best live, songs that have stood the test of time, songs that carry an interesting story, and songs that have been regulars in our sets throughout the years.”


9 | Free Throw | Cloud Sick

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Nashville’s Free Throw announce their new album Piecing It Together, out June 25. The new album was recorded with producer Will Yip (Bartees Strange, The Menzingers, Tigers Jaw), and today they share the video for lead single Cloud Sick. The video serves as a love letter to their home-town, highlighting some of their favorite local dive bars and rock venues off the well-worn Country/Americana path the city is known for. The band hop in the van and chase down a mystery video thief demanding the new album as ransom as they follow clues that see them stopping by Mickey’s Tavern, The End, The Basement East and Exit / In, among other punk rock haunts and local landmarks. Says Cory Castro: “Cloud Sick is a song about trying to make sure the person you are with is happy. Sometimes situations make the strain of a relationship even harder. The song really touches on personal insecurities and worries that your significant other may give up on the relationship.”


10 | Astoria State | Nobody Knows

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “No strangers to the toil and grind of the music business, the members of Astoria State have been professional musicians and road warriors in bands for the past decade. Now they’ve decided the time is right to step forward and take the lead. With the release of the hard-hitting yet hopeful single Nobody Knows, Astoria State are ready to take on that challenge. Boasting an instantly memorable chorus and driving melody, Nobody Knows is Astoria State’s desperate plea for answers in a world that seems in constant turbulence. The track burrows into our darkest moments, the times when all hope seems lost, and then asks why we must endure the suffering of life. Danny Resnick says: “Nobody Knows is a song that we really wanted to portray the visual and ethereal feeling of the chaos that can ensue in life. We wanted to project the feeling that takes over sometimes when the wreckage is so visceral. It is a recollection of being in a dark place without the answers, and making a plea to find them. The song is the about the revelation you have when you are running away from the carnage without a place to go. Ultimately, it’s about accepting that we don’t know the answers, but having the hope that our resolve will lead us to them.”


11 | Kandle | Misty Morning

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “As Juno-nominated singer Kandle Osborne prepares to launch her new project Set The Fire, she shares the album’s third single Misty Morning. Penned on a napkin while abroad, Misty Morning is a sonic journey that echoes soulful vulnerability and an honest reflection of realizing true love. For the video, Kandle reconnects with Honey Trap director Brandon William Fletcher to create classic ’40s noir-inspired cine-magic, filmed along the Vancouver coastline and within the lush landscape of Stanley Park. Kandle says: “Misty Morning is my first real love song, captured on a napkin while in Ischia, Italy when I was truly happy. My songwriting usually comes from a place of turmoil and catharsis, but this was simply a snapshot of a perfect, vulnerable moment. In recording it, I wanted to hide behind lush orchestration, but my producer/ best friend Michael Rendall had other ideas. He wanted to strip it down to just piano & a single vocal to take me out of my comfort zone and re-capture the open-hearted feelings I had while writing it. The song and the recording both hold for me a time when I dropped my guard for pure authentic love in spite of all my flaws and failures. In that moment, I felt my true value as a whole person for the first time.”


12 | Andreïa | Son Rio (Con Letra)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “This video has been my way of applying what I try to preach. In the words of Son Rio: Dare, enter, believe, do not take everything seriously, leave our fears, shame … etc! I have left my comfort zone and dare to openly and ridicule myself in the most creative way I could find. It was not easy to post it, because I feel super exposed. I had to ignore my shame and just throw myself in like the river that fears the sea.”


13 | Lea Porcelain | Just A Dream

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Berlin alt-rock duo Lea Porcelain share Just A Dream , taken from their upcoming album Choirs To Heaven, due May 21. Just A Dream is a brooding & melancholic blend of acoustic alternative rock that sees the band developing from their post-punk roots into a more mature and complex musical palette. They say: “The message we want to send out with this video is that all of our dreams and wishes are all still there for us all to take. Everyday anew. Especially in uncertain times. We just have to make them become reality. Day by day, piece by piece, step by step. These uncertain times are also times of opportunity. And you can still live your dream, if you take chances. And you can carry yourself through the coldest of winters with the warmest of hearts. A light that never goes out. Until we reach our final call.”


14 | Atlas Gray | Pick Me Up

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After seven years of writing, touring and honing their new sound, Altas Gray announce their sophomore album Through The Dark, due later this year. Today, they share the lead single Pick Me Up, along with the video. While written a few years back, the song’s message is all too relevant this year. “Pick Me Up captures the intense feelings of both loneliness and longing for another,” say Atlas Gray. “It dives into how loneliness can make us feel so claustrophobic, and how longing for another can pull us out of that feeling and free us.”


15 | Yelle | Noir

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “What are you wearing tonight? I’m dressing in black, I’ll probably be home late. Noir, the new single from Yelle, flooded with attitude, is unstoppable. The desire to dance, to accentuate its steps as in a fashion show while singing the lyrics, is immediate. Each element responds with intelligence and joy, sitting on this sticky bass line, from major to minor and vice versa, tipping your mood, whatever it is.”


16 | No Kill | Swooning

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:No Kill is the solo project of Brooklyn artist Jamie Cogar. On her forthcoming debut album Gold Chorus, Cogar has produced a subtly infectious set of contemporary shoegaze tracks, strung together by shimmering reverb and tethered by drone. Cogar complicates pop song structures with lush textures and hazy, spacious layers of guitar. The result is an expansive, melody-driven sound that brings to mind Raveonettes, Jesus and Mary Chain and the Dum Dum Girls’ ’60s-influenced hooks, like a shoegaze Mazzy Star. The first single Swooning opens with woozy Pixies-esque guitars that give way to a gleaming hook. “It’s a song about desire,” Cogar says, “It’s about vulnerability, irreverence, and the power games people play with one another.”


17 | Treephones | Matches

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Treephones (the musical moniker of Stephen Trothen) share Matches, the third single and opening track of the upcoming full-length album Pink Objects (out May 7). In the song, an individual contemplates various sources of light as they smoke a cigarette in their house. We discover halfway through that all this ruminating is prompted by a book of matches that was left on a nightstand. “I wrote Matches early in the process of putting the album together after coming up with the main sax riff and chords on the guitar,” says Trothen. “With the lyrics, I ran with the idea of a forgotten book of matches as an object that could signify either a one-night stand or the end of a relationship. I just wanted to describe a moment in time a few days after the end of something and try to capture the feeling of not really knowing where things stand without using any sort of exposition or details.”


18 | Molchat Doma | Otveta Net

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Molchat Doma share the video for Otveta Net. The band said: “For us, this was the first experience of remote work on a video. In addition to the story that was filmed in Moscow, there was also the filming of the band in Minsk, but the filming process was completely controlled and managed online from Moscow and Berlin. It was unusual. Respect for such an approach. And most importantly, we liked the result, the video turned out to be very correct in mood. There is longing and melancholy in it, but there is no darkness.”


19 | Hildegard | Jour 1

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Over just eight days in the studio in 2018, experimental singer-songwriter Helena Deland and multi-instrumentalist / producer Ouri (Ourielle Auvé) discovered an innate creative connection, building and bouncing ideas off of one another, developing an intuitive approach to composition and sound. The resulting self-titled album Hildegard (out June 4) is wholly its own. Today Deland and Ouri share the propulsive and thrilling opening track Jour 1, with an accompanying video. The duo describe Jour 1 as being “about processing by partying, and the clarity that sometimes comes with it.” The eight tracks on Hildegard fuse together into a sonic sphere, and are named for each day Deland and Ouri spent together. Deland’s folk background balances against Ouri’s nocturnal world of electronic and dance music. Two figures find space to meet, somewhere between light and dark, liquid and solid, heaven and earth. They weave in and out of each other. Weightless vocals and aphoristic lyrics hover over kinetic beats and throbbing bass. The meeting place sounds something like dusk, or dawn.”