With spring around the corner, The Matinee ’21 v. 042 offers some warm and embracing tunes. Some will leave you smiling, others reminiscing, and many in a state of euphoria. We start things with a song that personifies what to expect when the season officially changes next week. Oh, and Happy St. Patrick’s Day everyone!
Kishi Bashi – “Wait for Springtime” (Athens, GA USA)
RIYL: Andrew Bird, The Decemberists, Tall Tall Trees
The world seems brighter this time of year. Mother Nature will soon wear her finest colors now that springtime is imminent. The arrival of jewel-toned blossoms puts smiles on our faces, as does this new release from Kishi Bashi. Pure jubilation radiates from every note of “Wait for Springtime” – from the spry plucking of banjo strings to the sun-kissed harmonies, this song is the antidote to winter’s blues.
What makes this tune even more joyful is the addition of some of Kishi Bashi’s talented musician friends. Indie folk multi-instrumentalist Mike Savino (Tall Tall Trees) and acclaimed cellist Emily Hope Price (formerly of Pearl and the Beard) infuse undeniable vitality here, just as they have done on past tours with Kishi Bashi. Additional input from fellow Athens musicians Andrea DeMarcus and Dave Kirslis (Cicada Rhythm) help the song reach new heights. While the verses are cheery, the chorus is a rapturous burst of sonic serotonin with a message we should all remember: “Sunny days are behind every cloud up in the sky.”
“Wait for Springtime” is from Kishi Bashi’s forthcoming Emigrant EP which also includes his covers of songs by Dolly Parton and Regina Spektor. This song is available now via Joyful Noise Recordings from these links. The EP arrives digitally on April 2nd with the physical album to follow on May 21st.
Remember Sports – “Materialistic” (Philadelphia, USA)
RIYL: Big Thief, Waxahatchee, Ratboys
A month ago, Philly outfit Remember Sports (formerly known as Sports) turned a broken heart into a tour-de-force rocker on “Pinky Ring”. The song was a demonstration of Carmen Perry (vocals/guitar), Catherine Dwyer (bass), Jack Washburn (guitar), and Connor Perry’s (drums) ability to take an immensely personal and intimate experience into a collective catharsis. Even when they opt for a more restrained approach at the expense of epic guitar solos, they still rattle the walls with their powerful and meaningful songwriting, as is the case with “Materialistic”.
Despite its melancholic approach, the song trembles with intensity, as Perry’s vulnerable yet defiant voice defends why certain objects hold sentimental value to people. She holds on to them like precious jewels because each item contains a memory that none of us can see. They offer solace, comfort, and safety from the pain, chaos, and conflict around us and that haunted us in the past. In addition, after a year where we’ve been confined to the same spaces, the pictures, stuffed animals, ornaments, and everything else have an more meaning than they did before because they represent what we once had and what we long to have again.
Honey Lung – “Something” (London, England)
RIYL: DIIV, Oberhofer, The Districts
When we first came across London indie-rock group Honey Lung back in August 2016, they shared a single called, “Something”, which we said was “outrageously awesome”. So yeah, we’re kind of cheating a bit in sharing a song that was first released five years ago, but then again the band have re-released the tune as a (re-)introduction to their anthemic world and to announce their signing with.
The track as well as their previous single, “Juggle”, reveal why we’ve remained on the Honey Lung bandwagon – the London-based quartet know how to create slow-building rockers. Its shimmering beginning is like a casual walk in the park, where we enjoy the sun’s warmth, the sound of birds chirping, and the smell of the flowers. We’re in a state of bliss, which is the feeling that the cool, shoegaze-surf-rock blend creates. But as is the case when we’re outside for a little bit, we want to do something more active. We just want to run, and the band incite a riot in the final 75 seconds as the song transforms into a raucous, roof-raising rocker. It is, well, outrageously awesome.
Honey Lung are Jamie Batten (vocals/guitar), Charlie Gardener (guitar/synth), David Sherry (bass), and Omri Covo (drums). The single is taken from the band’s latest EP, Something, which is out now via the excellent indie label Big Scary Monsters. Get it on Bandcamp and get to know this band!
SPINN – “Billie” (feat. Christine Simpson of Yumi Zouma) (Liverpool, England)
RIYL: DIIV, Gengahr, Beach Fossils
Another band we’ve had our eyes and ears on for a wee time (if you can call four years a short period of time) are SPINN. They’ve tickled our ear drums with their anthemic brand of jangly, shoegaze-y pop-rock. The Liverpudlians’ music is the stuff made for alarm clocks, as when one of their songs comes on you just want to jump out of bed and get moving. It seems we’re not the only ones that have been lured into their addictive world, as their latest tune evidences.
With an assist from Christine Simpson of the great Yumi Zouma, SPINN unveil one of the year’s great feel-good numbers with “Billie”. The song is rocket fuel bottled in a crisp 214 seconds. It is energizing and euphoric with the bubbling rhythms and synths raising the temperature while the chiming guitars create the chest-swelling exhilaration. Despite the pure elation the song generates, remorse and regret linger in front-man Jonathon Quinn’s lyrics, as he wallows in self-despair following a break-up. There may be glee around him, but he is immune to it.
“People talk to me
But i can’t hear a word they’re saying
See them staring at me
I can’t blame them
Cause it’s so bittersweet
That i can’t sleep and i can’t eat now
I can’t change your mind
I could change your heart”
SPINN are: Jonathon Quinn (vocals/rhythm guitar), Andy Power (lead guitar/synthesizer), Sean McLachlan (bass/backing vocals), and Louis O’Reilly (drums/backing vocals). Get to know this band!
Beach Fuzz – “The Difference Between” (Philadelphia, USA)
RIYL: Boy Pablo, Hippo Campus, Damen
Let’s keep the good times going with a song from a relatively new-ish band that should soon be making waves across the continent with their energetic mix of surf-rock and jangle pop-rock. That band is Beach Fuzz, who reside in the grand city of Philadelphia that is more known for its cheesesteaks than its beaches (there are no beaches in Philly if you’re wondering). Ten days ago, they released their new EP, Holding On, which is streaming everywhere right now and available on Bandcamp. From this great little record is “The Difference Between”, and we have to warn you that you’ll probably be wiggling your hips while listening to it.
The song echoes of summer. It is jubilant, a bit quirky, and immensely fun. The guitars ring with a jangly infectious quality while the rhythms groove in the background. They provide the setting for front-man Ross Aronow’s extremely relatable story of an individual having the oh-so-typical relationship issues. But instead of being combative and confrontational, he ignores the problems and pretends they don’t exist. But as is always the case, the issues don’t disappear. They only get worse.
“It’s the difference between
You and me that’s got me worried about these things
And I’m laying in bed right here till I fall asleep
It’s too much work to wake me from this dream
I keep asking questions – I fear the answers”
Our advice to everyone is do not fear a relationship with Ross Aronow, John Crane, Jack Venneri, Jack Dratch, and Eric Juelke. These five young men are worth the investment in time and a few dollars.
Teenage Fanclub – “The Sun Won’t Shine On Me” (Bellshill, Scotland)
RIYL: The Beach Boys, Midlake, Grandaddy
Ask any longtime listener of Scottish band Teenage Fanclub to sum up their sound in one word, and you will hear a wide range of adjectives. Cathartic. Vibrant. Stirring. What you won’t hear are complaints of repetitive or boring. That’s because this group has mastered the art of uniting with listeners through their music. Their melodies spark connections and their verses deepen those bonds. Whether they are rocking hard or gently crooning, the indie legends continue to enrich those ties with each release. Their newest single is a lush exploration of their mellower side.
“The Sun Won’t Shine on Me” envelops listeners in a melancholy haze. The languid intro features bright guitars that seem to have originated in ‘60s-era San Francisco. Sway along as Norman Blake delivers the musings of a brokenhearted troubadour. Try, if you dare, to resist the fever dream charm as he bemoans the loss of love. Only the hardest of hearts are immune to these lines:
“I have lost any sense of belonging
I am drifting like ice on the sea
With a troubled mind I am in decline
And the sun won’t shine on me
We had love that I thought was forever
But it travelled 180 degrees
With a troubled mind I am in decline
And the sun won’t shine on me”
Teenage Fanclub are: Norman Blake (vocals, guitar), Raymond McGinley (vocals, lead guitar), Francis MacDonald (drums, vocals), Dave McGowan (bass, vocals), and Euros Childs (keys, vocals).
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