Indie Roundup | 120 Songs To Bring You To Your Knees This Weekend (Part 1)

Your Weekend Roundup begins with Velt Two Stripes, Whitehorse, TTB & more.

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Whitehorse won’t be pushed around, Velvet Two Stripes are running hot, Tedeschi Trucks Band play dominos with Trey Anastasio, Los Straitjackets are some bad hombres, The Flatlanders are on top of the world — and if you’re looking for all the music you can eat and more, you should be too. Your Weekend Roundup starts now:

 


1 | Whitehorse | Am I Just Gonna Stand Here (While You Take My Girl Away)

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Whitehorse pick up moments after the release of Modern Love — the duo’s blueprint for love in the digital age — with the announcement of another new album. Strike Me Down, set for release in September, showcases Whitehorse’s masterful, fantastical storytelling and melodic sensibilities, with plenty of space made for guitar shredding, epic basslines and spaced-out vocal layering. High-impact production and prismatic visuals contribute to Strike Me Down’s high-stakes mood. Am I Just Gonna Stand Here (While You Take My Girl Away) spins and swirls in equal measure, dizzy and giddy in sound while it weighs its options, or lack thereof. The song arrives with a kaleidoscopic video that translates album themes of building and breaking into set-smashing, confetti-bursting abandon.”


2 | Velvet Two Stripes | Fever

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Blending bluesy riffs and classic rock, the unmistakable force of female trio Velvet Two Stripes return with Fever. Alluringly sweet vocals complement the powerful rhythm, making Fever the most irresistible blues-rock anthem this year. Velvet Two Stripes slot in perfectly between The Kills to Deap Valley to Yeah Yeah Yeahs, reminding us of the sheer force of women in rock music. Taken from their upcoming third album due for release this October, Fever is an empowering track that packs a punch. Velvet Two Stripes say: “Fever describes an obsession that almost turns into a kind of mania. The atmosphere of the song is very mystical and it embodies our musical development throughout the years. Especially our openness towards trying new methods of recording stands out in this song. This is particularly noticeable in the polyphonic vocals, the bass that is played with a bottleneck and our beer organ specially created for the song.”


3 | Tedeschi Trucks Band | Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “On July 16, Tedeschi Trucks Band will release Layla Revisited (Live At Lockn’), a one-off live recording of the seminal Derek & The Dominos album Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs, performed in its entirety with special guest Trey Anastasio. Watch the album performance of Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad — which builds to a climax amidst cyclonic, concurrent solos from Trucks and Anastasio. “By the time that I started playing guitar, the sound of Duane Allman’s slide was almost an obsession,” says Trucks. “His playing on Layla is still one of the high-water marks for me. The spirit, the joy, the recklessness, and the inevitability of it. My dad would play that record for me and my brother to fall asleep to and further sear it into my DNA.”


4 | Los Straitjackets | Hombre

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Los Straitjackets, the fastest surf-rock band in the West, are back with a new original tune titled Hombre. Written by Eddie Angel, the song soundtracks the sounds of the Wild West, featuring guest musician Jim Hoke (Paul McCartney, Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris) sitting in to provide the lap steel, harmonica and ocarina sounds. Grab your wrestling mask and cowboy hat, because it’s getting rowdy at the surf-rock ranch!”


5 | The Flatlanders | Sittin’ On Top Of The World

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:The Flatlanders, the iconic Texas trio of Butch Hancock, Joe Ely and Jimmie Dale Gilmore, have made their first album of new music in more than 12 years. Treasure of Love will be released on July 9, but today the band released the single Sittin’ On Top of the World, well known by fans as one of their most notable show closers. “Sometimes you’re sitting on top of the world, the next minute you are face down on the bottom. Just like life. (And the very next minute you are at the top again),” said Butch Hancock. Added Joe Ely: “It’s better to sit on top of it, rather than carry it. It’s a song that once you have it in your head you have to sing it.”


6 | Lacuna Common | Sensibility

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Lacuna Common share their debut EP It’s All Talk, which continues the Oxford four-piece’s exploration of life in suburban England against a soundtrack of melodic indie rock. Singer Alfie Franks says: “A lot of the songs are about our encounters and observations we’ve made growing up in and around Abingdon and Oxford. Throughout the whole EP there’s a combination of all the stuff we’ve come across: the funny memories or the sad ones, and a few portraits of people we’ve met along the way.”


7 | Nicarus | Coal People, Coal Puppets

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Nicarus, the one-woman band featuring Israel’s Tali Green, released a video for her song Coal People, Coal Puppets. The song is a remastered version from her recent album of the same name. Tali commented: “I am so happy to release this video! It is one of my most personal and meaningful creations; it was the birth of Nicarus and written in a realm between the worlds in times of both darkness and light.”


8 | Nadjiwan | Solar

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “After offering a first taste of the new album Star Nation last month with the title track, Nadjiwan shares the single Solar, revealing more of the sweeping “space rock opera” that will be released May 28. As Marc Meriläinen, the Toronto singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and all-around visionary better known as Nadjiwan says, “Humans have always questioned and wondered about both our purpose and origins in the universe. There are numerous stories in Indigenous cultures of the ‘star people’ visiting us throughout history with the purpose of teaching us a greater understanding of not only the universe, but ourselves. In short, we ultimately come from the stars.”


9 | James Clark Institute | Next Best Thing

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:James Clark is a doctor of pop. His prescription is simple: Three-minute blasts of medicinal music. Here’s one: The catchy Next Best Thing, from his new 10-song album The Colour Of Happy. For the disc, James once again called upon the talents of producer/musician Moe Berg (The Pursuit Of Happiness), a man who knows his way around a hook. Moe also added guitar and vocals to the record. When he wasn’t listening to his parents’ early rock ’n’ roll and country-western records, James, persuaded by his guitar playing brother, settled in behind the drum kit and discovered the songwriters that would influence him: Lennon & McCartney, Ray Davies and Elvis Costello.”


10 | Marc Ribler | Who Could Ask For Anything More

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Marc Ribler, singer-songwriter-musician-producer and music director for Stevie Van Zandt, is debuting a video for his latest single Who Could Ask For Anything More, a track off his upcoming solo LP The Whole World Awaits You, out July 16. Ribler says, “While delivered tongue-in-cheek, the song has serious implications. It’s about taking a good hard look at the damage done by greed. It certainly seems to lead to insensitivity and indifference. For example, shutting down the George Washington Bridge for political gain and manipulation. Creating plastic islands on our vast beautiful oceans, or simply creating multibillion dollar industries that benefit from the divisive proliferation of unhealthy citizens due to social, environmental, nutritional and drama-based pollution. And 100 other things I can think of at the moment. That being said, all this crazy shit gives a songwriter much to write about. Perhaps that’s the bright side of greed, mayhem, death and destruction.”


11 | Walking Papers | Creation Reproduction and Death

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Walking Papers (frontman Jefferson Angell and keyboard player Benjamin Anderson) released the video for Creation Reproduction and Death, from their third album The Light Below. Angell explains, “I wrote Creation Reproduction and Death while contemplating how much time we have left, how we’ll spend it and who will we spend it with? It’s a question we can only answer for ourselves compounded by the pressure that we may not know if we made the right decision until there is no time left to do anything about it.”


12 | Between The Jars | The Swarm

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Between The Jars have released their new song and video The Swarm. The first single of their sophomore album What’s To Come reflects on the start of the pandemic. Singer Florian Albronda writes from his own experiences — he caught the virus twice in the summer of 2020. The Swarm conveys the virus as a new entity coming into our world, reproducing and mutating itself. With fast-paced riffs and drumbeats, the chaotic nature of this process is sonically echoed, eventually leading to the outcome that we might have to accept the presence of this new entity among us. We might have to learn to live with it and, like the virus itself, adapt.”


13 | The Vendettas | Guardians

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Melbourne hard rockers The Vendettas are back with a new album, The Vendettas III! The band recently released their cracking single Guardians, and to celebrate their album, they present a video. The Vendettas make a strong case for themselves as one of Australia’s premier rock bands with their latest album. Each song is carefully categorised in perfect sequence to engage the listener with an old-school ‘just press play and take in the whole album’ experience.”


14 | Crown Lands | Right Way Back

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Juno-nominated Canadian rock duo Crown Lands — Cody Bowles (vocals and drums) and Kevin Comeau (guitar, bass, and keys) — present a live version of their previously released track Right Way Back. Shot at Revolution Studio in Toronto, the video captures Crown Lands in their element, delivering the energy and big sound of their live shows.”


15 | Po Lazarus | Despair, Too

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Montreal rock band Po Lazarus have released the video for Despair, Too, the title track to their recent EP. Shortly before the pandemic, Po Lazarus had the pleasure of recording a dozen tunes at The Tragically Hip’s Bathouse Studio in Bath, Ontario alongside veteran Canadian producer Mark Vreeken (The Hip, Leonard Cohen, Norah Jones) and assistant engineer Nyles Spencer (Gord Downie, Half Moon Run). Alongside a full LP, the band recorded the three-song EP Despair, Too.”


16 | Nathan Lawr | Restless

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Nathan Lawr came up during the Toronto indie-rock heyday that spawned bands like Broken Social Scene and Feist, drumming for Royal City and Sea Snakes. In 2000, he started writing his own folk songs, releasing a series of solo albums. In 2010, he started Minotaurs and spent the next 10 years writing, recording, and performing with a psychedelic funk band. Now, almost a decade later, Lawr has come into his own, finding his voice as a pop singer and releasing his most powerful collection of songs to date. Nathan’s upcoming album Apocalypse Marshmallow is a meticulously crafted, dynamic powerhouse. The newest single is Restless — a song about living in the modern dichotomy: We can have anything we want but we’re relentlessly unsatisfied.”


17 | Khartoum | Vultures

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Khartoum return Vultures, the title track from their forthcoming debut EP announced today. With its strong and vibrant hook, stellar production and an earworm of a chorus to boot, Vultures is Khartoum’s most enticing release to date, demonstrating a flair for bold and captivating indie-rock anthems. Frontman Oscar Dunbar states: “The song is an anthem for all those who have felt themselves negatively labelled. What levels us is our humanity and we felt being able to sit in a circle and discuss our fears and hopes was as good a way as any to present this. The video is about social equality succeeding despite discrimination diminishing hope, achievement and self-esteem.”


18 | Lammping | Lammping

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “Toronto band Lammping present the track Lammping, which struts its way through a mix of fuzzy psychedelia and melodic indie-rock. It is the first single from the upcoming Flashjacks LP due this summer. The foundation of Lammping’s sound is rooted in Jay Anderson’s heavy drumming and Mikhail Galkin’s melodic riffs. With the addition of samples, drum machines and a variety of instrumentation, the upcoming LP’s sonic palate is just as indebted to Stereolab, De La Soul and Kraftwerk as it is to Black Sabbath, Blue Cheer and Sleep. Sonically and thematically, this single is a mission statement of sorts, laying out the band’s new experimental direction, eschewing cliched stoner and psych-rock tropes and attempting to forge a new path in heavy music.”


19 | Rodrigo Amarante | Maré

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: “You won’t meet anyone like Rodrigo Amarante. A Brazilian multi-instrumentalist and composer currently based in Los Angeles, Rodrigo is one of those artists that comes around every so often and leaves you feeling something you’ve never felt before. His second album Drama comes out July 16, but you can watch lead single Maré now. An upbeat, seemingly happy song with less jolly aspects hidden beneath the surface, Maré is based on a Spanish proverb: The tide will fetch what the ebb brings. Explains Rodrigo: “Things that arrive in your hand by destiny, they are just as easily swept away.”


20 | Ester Poly | Wet

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE:Wet, the second album by the busy duo Ester Poly Martina Berther (electric bass, vocals, Zurich) and Béatrice Graf (drums, vocals, Geneva) — will be released on Aug. 20. On their new album, the two musicians expand the possibilities of the bass-drums tandem. Rock, peppered with a pinch of unexpected sounds and their influences from improvised music result in a musical manifesto, carried by lyrics in German, English and French. Today, the album’s title-track single has arrived. Wet is about female lust. The lyrics were written on a summer day when the hard-working female musicians had a libido boost in the rehearsal room and started dreaming of more.”