The nine tracks on the Saturday Sampler March 3rd edition offer plenty of sizzling tunes from newcomers and legends alike. Featuring artists from Australia, England, Spain, Sweden, and the USA, today’s playlist is a sumptuous sonic feast.
ANMLPLNET – “I Was Fucked By A Cloud” (New York City, USA)
RIYL: Slothrust, STRFKR
Fans of indie rockers Slothrust are already aware that frontwoman Leah Wellbaum has a new side project with drummer Mickey Vershbow. But what may surprise you about ANMLPMNET is the breathtaking mellowness of their debut single. “I Was Fucked By a Cloud” is the perfect name for a tune that initially floats on a higher plane of dream pop chillness before revealing a stormy center.
In terms of comparison, where Slothrust is a banging Saturday night party in a sweaty venue, ANMLPLNET is the following rainy afternoon you spend in recovery before going out again. That’s not to say this song doesn’t offer plenty of substance. But in place of growling guitars and propulsive percussion throughout, the duo choose to amp up slowly. They unleash an intense instrumental storm at the bridge, with the mellowness of the first half serving as a kind of foreplay before the action gets hot and heavy. Once the action is in full swing, you are so entranced by the throbbing rhythms you can barely remember the quiet start.
Avalanche Party – “Porcelain” (North Yorkshire Moors, England)
RIYL: Shame, The Horrors, INHEAVEN
Leave it to the current state of the world to provide extra motivation to one of the UK’s great indie rock bands. It’s not as if Avalanche Party needed a reason to write another barn-storming, ass-kicking rocker because the North Yorkshire quintet have developed a reputation for their high-energy shows and fierce alternative rock. But here they are with “Porcelain”, a powerful tune to blow your minds.
Urgent, assertive, and intense, the band are redefining what it means to be a man in the 21st century. While they don’t say it outright, it seems they’re taking aim at the Harvey Weinsteins of the world by saying great men aren’t fucking misogynist pricks who treat women like sex objects. “I’ll redefine your notion of what the best a man can be!”, Jordan Bell hollers. For every guy out there, let this be a phrase you live by each day.
The single is out now on Clue Records, and they’ve pressed a limited edition run of 250, 12″ blood-red transparent vinyl.
Avalanche Party are Jordan Bell (vocals/guitar), Jared Thorpe (vocals/guitar), Joe Bell (bass), Glen Adkins (keys), and Kane Waterfield (drums).
Dahlia Sleeps – “Only You” (London, England)
RIYL: London Grammar, Daughter, Phoria
In Dahlia Sleeps‘ new single, “Only You”, there’s a line that perfectly describes the impact they have on us: “You make my bones weak.” Obviously frontwoman Lucy Hill is referring to the emotions that swell inside her when thinking of someone from the past, but those same feelings tingle inside anyone who is exposed to this band’s music.
Like every song they’ve released, “Only You” is a multi-dimensional, multi-sensory experience that stays with you for hours if not days. Hill’s lush vocals are immersive, penetrating deep into your soul as her words grab hold of your heart. Luke Hester, Spencer Buckley, and Callum Sharp’s orchestration is a marvel as they seamlessly fuse together modern electronica, contemporary R&B, and classical music elements. The result is an atmosphere that just doesn’t feel like a dream but is spellbinding. Few bands are able to master this gift and to do it so consistently. No wonder every time we hear a song from Dahlia Sleeps our hearts flutter and “crazy dreams fill our head.” We love this band.
The song is available on Olympia Records. Dahlia Sleeps’ second EP is expected later in 2018.
Gang Of Four – “LUCKY” (Leeds, England)
RIYL: Blur, Duran Duran, Depeche Mode
While we normally feature emerging artists or lesser-known indie bands, we are bound by an unspoken code to share new music from legendary artists every now and then. One such band who deserves the “legend” status is British post-punk outfit Gang of Four. After four decades making music, their latest release is proof they show no signs of stopping anytime soon.
“LUCKY” bursts with a headstrong energy from the first note, just as you’d expect from the Leeds four-piece. The production from Ben Hillier (Blur, Depeche Mode) enhances the upbeat urgency of the tune inspired by political hubris. Founding member Andy Gill wrote the song after watching financial talking heads on TV discussing the economy. He says. “America’s demented ringmaster-clown claims to have bestowed fortune on the markets. He believes himself the master of luck, but luck isn’t capable of fundamentally changing the system.” If any band knows a thing or two about changing the system, it’s Gang of Four. Their seminal 1979 release, That’s Entertainment, secured their place in music history. “Lucky” is further testament to their timeless relevance.
Gang of Four are Andy Gill, John “Gaoler” Sterry, Thomas McNiece, and Tobias Humble.
Josh Rouse – “Salton Sea” (Valencia, Spain via Nashville, USA)
RIYL: Andrew Bird, Sondre Lerche, Roxy Music
When we shared the title track from Josh Rouse‘s upcoming album, Love in the Modern Age last November, we were impressed by the shift in tone. This artist whose early albums fell squarely in the indie Americana genre now sounded more European. We wondered if that single was an indication of how polished the entire album would be, or if it was a one-off. Now that he has shared the new “Salton Sea” single, we realize this album is very much rooted in ’80s-style romantic pop. And needless to say, we’re thrilled.
“Salton Sea” features Rouse’s smooth vocals delivered in a glossy package. The synths are bright, and even the handclaps fit stylistically without seeming too derivative of ’80s New Wave. Vintage inspiration never sounded so good.
Did we mention the whistling? You thought only Andrew Bird could do that? Think again.
King Tuff – “Raindrop Blue” (Vermont, USA)
RIYL: Portugal. The Man, Danger Mouse, Passion Pit
Funk, disco, and pop are three genres we didn’t expect King Tuff, the project of Kyle Thomas, to merge. The veteran artist hasn’t just put them together; he’s made them contemporary and awesome. He’s previously released two songs from his forthcoming fifth album, The Other, and now he drops the third.
Dust off your double-knit polyester suit (or your sequined dress) because “Raindrop Blue” will have you strutting like John Travolta or Donna Summer. Even Thomas’ storyline has a bit of Saturday Night Fever in it. Although the funky rhythms and the disco vibes are straight out of the ’70s, the song feels fresh, contemporary, and perfect for the night clubs in LA, London, and Hong Kong. Or you can just blast this tune through your favorite headphones. Either way, there is exactly zero chance that you’ll be able to sit still while this tune is playing.
Sweaty Palms – “Captain of the Rugby Team” (Glasgow, Scotland)
RIYL: White Room, The Pale White, The Fall
We have yet to showcase any new UK bands this week, which is unusual. Fortunately, Glaswegians Sweaty Palms have come to the rescue. Don’t let the name, their antics on social media, nor the NSFW artwork for their new song, “Captain of the Rugby Team”, fool you. These four gents are taking inspiration from the likes of The Fall by delivering a fun, cranky tune with plenty of lyrical bite.
Equal parts punk and pop (and 100% outrageous), this song is what the ’80s sounded like in the UK. It was a time when bands channeled angst and political unrest in music that was exhilarating yet made you dance. Everyone knew exactly what the music meant. It wasn’t simply entertainment; it was the voice of people fed up with sniveling politicians and their conservative values. In some respects, 2018 isn’t much different, and Sweaty Palms are letting people know exactly what is wrong. The “Captain of the Rugby Team” represents much of what is wrong with the world today. Misogyny still reigns. The tough-guy attitude still wins votes. People really love a winner but will turn a blind eye to his antics. But at the end of the day, he (and all of us) are the sorry suckers.
The song is out on Nice Swan Records. Sweaty Palms are: Ronan Fay (guitar), Robbie Houston (vocals/guitar), Shaun ‘Monty’ Montgomery (bass), and Tom Ross (drums).
Tiny Fighter – “New Century” (Stockholm, Sweden & Melbourne, Australia)
RIYL: Everything But the Girl, Metric
Today we want to introduce you to your newest musical addiction: Tiny Fighter. This Stockholm-based duo of Swedish singer Therese Karlsson and Australian musician Tim Spelman make the kind of dreamy indie pop that becomes the soundtrack of your life. The secret to their buoyant debut single “New Century” is simple: it radiates pure vitality. Karlsson’s sun-kissed vocals call to mind Tracey Thorn (Everything But the Girl) while their overall sound has a ’90s cosmopolitan pop sound.
The song’s video is a visual feast that captures the sense of excitement you feel this time of year. Maybe it’s spring fever; maybe it’s the feeling of a new crush. Either way, you can’t help but feel a rush when you lose yourself in this tune. The band has only two songs out so far on their Soundcloud page, so hopefully they will release an EP or full-length album later this year. We cannot wait to hear more from this talented pair.
Yuno – “No Going Back” (Jacksonville, FL, USA)
RIYL: Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Blood Orange, Tame Impala
You know an emerging artist is worth checking out when they are signed to the badass indie label, Sub Pop. Our curiosity was piqued earlier this week when we discovered one of their newest signees isn’t from Seattle or even the Pacific Northwest. Quite the contrary: Yuno is a rising talent from Jacksonville, Florida. While this part of the country may not have Seattle’s reputation for producing extraordinary musical artists, Yuno’s debut single will make you realize you’ve been wrong to overlook this Florida area.
“No Going Back” is beyond fresh, combining elements from some of indie music’s strongest bands. You’ll hear echoes of Blood Orange but also the psychedelic grooves that rival anything Tame Impala or Unknown Mortal Orchestra have released. Yuno croons with bright vocals that soar over an irresistible synth riff. This is the kind of tune that elevates your spirits and makes you love life. You want to inhale the energy Yuno emits and let its magic reach you on a cellular level. To say we’re looking forward to what else he’s got in store is a massive understatement.
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