The Matinee September 1st rocks, rolls, and swoons with eight fantastic songs. You will recognize several of the artists and bands on the mini-playlist, but there are, of course, a couple of hidden gems. Enjoy the first day of September with this set of great new music.
Taylor Payne – “The Jungle Talks” (Adelaide/Sunshine Coast, Australia)
RIYL: LP, Cloves, The Eurythmics
We first learned about Taylor Payne late in 2015 when she released “Outsider”. The song introduced us to a young woman with an incredible voice, and whose style was reminiscent of Florence + The Machine and LP. After eight months away, she returns with another fantastic track.
“The Jungle Talks” is absolutely stunning. The piano- and synth-driven melodies echo the ’80s, combining an infectious pop sound with an undertone that is haunting and enchanting. What stands out, however, is her voice. It has a surprisingly deep lushness that leaves chills down your back. But do not ignore her songwriting, which is mature and thoughtful. On this track, the jungle is an analogy for the unpredictability and wildness of the world around us, where one can easily get subsumed by the chaos. The song is for everyone who has felt lost and has long sought to be found. Similarly, people need to start paying attention to Payne, whose potential is akin to the great LP.
“The Jungle Talks” officially drops on September 9th via The A&R Department.
Springtime Carnivore – “Raised By Wolves” (Los Angeles, USA)
RIYL: Neko Case, Jenny Lewis, La Sera
When Greta Morgan arrived on the scene a couple of years, we were immediately drawn into her world as Springtime Carnivore. We could not stop praising her self-titled, debut album, which was one of our favorite albums of 2014.
For the past few months, Morgan has made some noise working with La Sera’s Katy Goodman on a covers album. The duo’s compilation, Take It, It’s Yours, was released last week, and it included a great rendition of The Replacements’ “Bastards of Young”. Now Morgan has refocused her sights on the release of her sophomore album.
The second single from Midnight Room is “Raised by Wolves”. The song sees Morgan move away from the ’60s and ’70s-inspired pop approach to one that rings of ’80s neon without the cheesiness. Instead, Morgan, with the assistance of producer Chris Coady (TV on the Radio, Yeah Yeah Yeahs), has released a song that is pop perfection. Every instrument – the shimmering lead guitar, the boppy synths, and percolating rhythms – is on point, and Morgan’s voice is light yet dazzling. The one thing that has remained is her songwriting. Clever and poignant, the song is not what it seems. It is not about a relationship, but the people who try to wiggle their way into our lives for their own personal gain. No wonder we have fallen for Springtime Carnivore – you never know what topic she will tackle next.
Springtime Carnivore’s sophomore album, Midnight Room, will be released on October 7th via Autumn Tone Records. Are you as excited as us?
The Radio Dept. – “Swedish Guns” (Lund, Sweden)
RIYL: Depeche Mode, Soft Cell, Blonder
Speaking of excited, Swedish indie-pop legends, The Radio Dept., are back! After six years away and fans thinking the band would never return from their self-imposed hiatus, they have shared news that their fourth album is on the way. Running Out Of Love promises to be the band’s most serious and poignant effort to date. Political, social, and moral issues will be tackled on the LP, “Swedish Guns” is, thus, the perfect lead single to showcase the band’s shift.
“Swedish Guns” is a condemnation of the rising arms industry in Sweden, which has torn communities apart. While the song focuses on the impact of guns and violence in their home country, it is an issue that is pertinent throughout the world.
To highlight the severity of the issue, The Radio Dept. have departed from their dream-pop sound. In its place on “Swedish Guns” is an approach that is starker, bleaker, and more synth-heavy. The song recalls the dark wave that took hold in the ’80s, where bands like Depeche Mode and Bauhaus started creating more daunting numbers. But as is their trademark, the duo of Johan Duncanson and Martin Carlberg still add an ethereal element, making “Swedish Guns” both dark and hypnotic. For long-time supporters, the song might come across first as a surprise. Many, however, will immediately appreciate the duo’s precision and brilliance demonstrated on the song.
“Swedish Guns” is the lead single from The Radio Dept.’s forthcoming, new album, Running Out Of Love. The LP, like the song,
It arrives October 21st via Labrador Records.
Peeling – “Leisure Life” (Toronto, Canada)
RIYL: L.A. Witch, Death Valley Girls, Pre-Occupations
For a few years, psychedelic-rock band Mexican Slang rocked the Toronto underground scene. They released a handful of EPs and were a fixture on one of the city’s best labels, Buzz Records. The group, however, has undergone several changes over the past twelve months. Two of the original members remain, and the trio has expanded to become a quartet. The psychedelic rock approach has been infused with a drone-rock, post-punk sound. The biggest change, though, is the name. Gone is Mexican Slang and in its place is Peeling.
Despite all the moving parts, one thing remains – Peeling can still friggin’ rock. Their first single under this new formation is “Leisure Life”. The song combines the eeriness of L.A. Witch with the visceral catharsis of Pre-Occupations, as the reverb guitars, the jittery bass line, and the crushing drum create the creepy soundscape. Frontwoman Annabelle Lee’s vocals, meanwhile, produce the spine-chilling effects, as her wail reaches Mish Way (of White Lung) levels. All in all, “Leisure Life”, despite being only two minutes long, is one awesome rocker.
Peeling’s debut EP, Rats In Paradise, will be released October 14th via Buzz Records. The band is comprised of Annabelle Lee (lead vocals/guitar), Jimmy Tony Rowlinson (bass), Denholm Whale (drums), and Alejandro Cairncross (guitar).
Negative Gemini – “Rollercoaster” (Brooklyn, USA)
RIYL: Heavenly Beat, Toro y Moi, My Gold Mask
They say that imitation is the best form of flattery. That is true to a certain degree, but in music imitation often leads to redundancy and repetition. This pattern – some would even call it an “illness” – affects all genres, but electronic music might be the victim most inflicted. Standing out from the mass wave of wannabe producers becomes difficult unless the artist opts to not follow trends.
This has often been the case with Lindsey French and her project Negative Gemini. While she has created her share of club-friendly, EDM-style singles, she has leaned more towards the ambient and ethereal. Her new single, “Rollercoaster”, combines the two electronic fields into one dazzling song. On the one hand, the pulsating beats and the rising tempo give off a club vibe. French, however, harnesses the intensity so that the song never approaches the predictable EDM levels, and she adds a lush, haunting melody to enhance the song’s enchantment. The song, consequently, will have you closing your eyes while you whirl freely across the dance floor (or bedroom). The experience is much like a rollercoaster.
Ludvig Moon – “Houses at Night” (Oslo, Norway)
RIYL: Postal Service, LISBON, City Calm Down
Many established artists have surprised us with new singles this week, but the best surprises are still the music that comes from bands who sole intention is to be heard. Case in point indie pop-rock band Ludvig Moon.
The sextet from Oslo, Norway only two days ago released a split single. One of the tracks is “Houses at Night”, which is simply stunning. The song is spectacularly urgent, as the collision of instruments, the soothing vocals, and the wavering tempo rise and fall like a cascade of rapids. There is a hypnotism in the song as well, thanks to the beautiful crystalline guitars while the combination of synths and strings provide the cinematic drama.
Ludvig Moon only formed three years ago, but with “Houses at Night” they have written a masterpiece. No wonder this band has established a solid following that extends to as far as Japan. It is only now, however, that we are learning about them. Better late than never.
The six-piece is comprised of Anders, Ole T, Herman, Kristofer, Andreas, and Lydia. The second single, “Sparks”, can be heard on SoundCloud.
Helena Deland – “Baby” (Montreal, Canada)
RIYL: Mazzy Starr, Hope Sandoval, Chris Isaak
Mazzy Starr and Hope Sandoval have long mesmerized music fans with their breathtaking alt-folk. Many artists have attempted to replicate their sound and Sandoval’s lush vocals, but most have never been able to match the legends’ authenticity and mystical power. That is until today. Meet Helena Deland.
Last week, the Montreal-based artist released her debut EP, Drawing Room. The EP is terrific, absolutely fantastic. Its star is the dramatic and foreboding “Baby”. From the opening notes of the strings and acoustic guitar to the first words expressed from Deland’s unforgettable voice, we are immediately captivated and drawn into her beautiful world. This intense magnetism to the song is akin Mazzy Starr’s best works.
While the melodies and Deland’s voice are the highlights, the storytelling is also fantastic. The song is an unexpected story of love and its surprises, as Deland tells the story of a transgendered person searching and finding love. It’s not just finding intimacy with another person, but loving one self. Beautiful, powerful, memorable, “Baby” is all that and then some.
To hear more from Drawing Room, head over to Deland’s Bandcamp page.
False Heads – “Weigh In” (East London, England)
RIYL: Royal Blood, Drenge, Highly Suspect
Is it False-Heads, Falseheads, FalseHeads, or False Heads? We’ve been covering the band for nearly eighteen months and we have no clue. We are not sure if the English rockers even know. What matters, however, is their music. Whether it is melodic indie-rock tunes, like “Twentynothing”, or 90s-influenced alt-rock, such as on “Slew”, they continue to blow our minds. Their new single, “Weigh In”, is another ferocious number.
“Weigh In” has everything you would expect from a blazing garage-rock song – fierce, crunchy guitar riffs; hammering percussion; and a head-banging bass line. If this sounds like a description of Royal Blood or Drenge, you wouldn’t be far off because False Heads play with the same fiery intensity of these two English bands. Given their work to date, it might be time people started comparing band to this young, emerging trio from East London.
“Weigh In” officially drops October 7th via 25 Hour Convenience Store. False Heads are Luke Griffiths, Jake Elliott and Barney Nash.
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