The Matinee ’22 v. 110 is filled with songs made for these hot, late-summer days, where many will cool you down and others will add to the heat. This is part 1 of 2 for today, so click here for Part 2 (or The Matinee ’22 v. 111).
Futurebirds & Carl Broemel – “Sinz & Frenz” (Athens, GA, USA)
RIYL: My Morning Jacket, Uncle Tupelo, Dr. Dog
Why We’re Digging It: When one of the finest southern-rock bands adds one of the greatest, living guitar players for a new EP, how can we pass up sharing their music? Futurebirds and My Morning Jacket’s Carl Broemel sure raised expectations with the summertime rocker “Buffet Days”, and they add to the anticipation with “Sinz and Frenz”.
The song undoubtedly comes from the US south with its twangy elements and superb guitar solos (which clearly has the Broemel patient delivery). It’s made to be played during barbecues with friends and one last road trip. It also is intended to bring a community together with Carter King’s positive message of hope and unity. As he perfectly states while Broemel rips a great riff:
“What makes you humble sets you free
Sometimes you can mess everything up and still come out clean
Set them up and knock em down
You gotta be lost before you’re found”
Album Information: Futurebirds are: Carter King (vocals, guitarist), Daniel Womack (vocals, guitar), Thomas Johnson (vocals, guitar), Brannen Miles (bass), Kiffy Myers (pedal steel), Spencer Thomas (keyboard), and Tom Myers (drums). Their and Broemel’s new EP, Bloomin’ Too, is out September 9th on No Coincidence Records with pre-orders available here.
Iceage – “Shake The Feeling” (Copenhagen, Denmark)
RIYL: The Libertines, Manic Street Preachers, Iceage
Why We’re Digging It: Back in 2018, the great Iceage released Beyondless. The LP was one of our favorite albums because it was a richly layered compilation that featured striking post-punk to soul-touched art-punk. The record laid the groundwork for 2021’s Seek Shelter, which was another outstanding effort. This time, however, the Copenhagen quintet extended to Brit-pop and stadium-sized ’90s rock. A few songs, however, didn’t make the final cut on these albums, including “Shake The Feeling”.
Written during the Beyondless sessions, this track recalls the British music of the early ’90s. It’s a ripping, surging number that sees the band just rock out. The track is a bit playful, plenty energizing, and a whole lot of fun. Maybe more importantly, it sees Elias Bender Rønnenfelt (vocals, guitar), Jakob Tvilling Pless (bass), Johan Surballe Wieth (guitar), and Dan Kjær Nielsen (drums) once again deliver an urgent tale of perseverance and survival. The sound may be a bit different, yet it is still very much Iceage.
Fat Trout Trailer Park – “Sleepy Peeps” (Brooklyn, USA)
RIYL: Opus Kink, Mandrake Handshake, The 2 Bears
Why We’re Digging It: Fat Trout Trailer Park may call Brooklyn home, but the duo of Laurence Rushworth and frontman Sean Raab sound like they come from the Brighton, London, and Leeds art-punk scenes. There is good reason for that since Rushworth is from the UK while Raab is a native Belgian. The pair offer an adrenaline-inducing, rip-roaring number with “Sleepy Peeps”, which at times sounds like a parade on stage as horns blare over top the groovy rhythms and tingling guitars.
At its heart, though, is a post-punk ethos, which resonates from Raab’s soaring vocal and message about the overworked and underpaid. So while the tune may incite a party, Raab’s words are more like a thesis, as he observes how people need to push pills and other stimulants in order to raise their productivity and punch the clock. This is exactly the type of song we tend to dig – a socially-charged number that gets the blood flowing.
Album Information: The single is out on boutique label 22Twenty.
Twain – “2 Lovers” (Franklin County, VA, USA)
RIYL: Big Thief, Passenger, José Gonzàlez
Why We’re Digging It: After sharing “The Priestess” and “King of Fools”, Twain founder and front man Mat Davidson reconfirmed what we said many moons ago – he’s this generation’s Bob Dylan. He is unquestionably one of the finest storytellers today, where he can even take a familiar theme and make it sound fresh again. He does this with “2 Lovers”, which is very much a love story told from Davidson’s perspective. However, his lyrics are not the usual diarist style nor regurgitates the usual sappy emotions. He instead tells a Spike Jonze-like story, where he wishes to live inside the soul of another while at the same time not revealing everything he feels inside. Davidson is intentionally cautious so as to protect himself and the one he loves from future heartbreak.
But with the elegant, fairy tale-like melody and Davidson’s warm voice, you might fall in love with Twain. We did a long time ago.
Album Information: Twain are: Mat Davidson (vocals, guitar), Ken Woodward (bass), Austin Vaughn (drums), and Adrian Olsen (recordist). Their new album, Noon, will be released October 21st via Keeled Scales. Pre-orders and pre-saves available here and on Bandcamp.
Human Barbie – “wait” (Los Angeles, USA)
RIYL: Christopher Cross meets S. Carey and Shearwater
Why We’re Digging It: In this heatwave that has consumed much of the Northern Hemisphere, we need something to slow the heart rate and cool our souls. Look no further than Christopher Leopold’s project Human Barbie, who not long ago gave us the equivalent of an ocean breeze with “no worries”.
On “wait”, he slows things down even further, delivering a dream-pop number made for slumbers and relief from the rising mercury. A beautiful patience emanates from Leopold’s newest single, particularly from the ’70s-esque soft-rock vibes heard in the percussion and piano as well as his Christopher Cross-like vocal. A touch of urgency, however, bubbles underneath in the dangling guitar, which provides the base for Leopold’s message of, well, slowing things down and holding on to every moment for as long as we can.
Album Information: The single is out on Poor Man Records, who release Human Barbie’s newest EP later this year.
TOLEDO – “Flake” (Brooklyn, USA)
RIYL: HOVVDY, Sam Evian, Chris Cohen
Why We’re Digging It: Just a month separates us from TOLEDO‘s new album, How It Ends, which is shaping up to be a stellar output. At least that’s the indication given from recently-released singles, ““L-Train”, the duo release of “Leopard Skin” and “Climber” last month, and now “Flake”.
Sit down, take a deep breath, and plunge into Daniel Alvarez and Jordan Dunn-Pilz’s blissful take of Americana. Allow their terrific harmonies and the summertime vibrancy of the orchestration, particularly the light chimes of the pedal steel, steal you away from reality. Despite the song’s stunning qualities, it concerns moving on from tragedy, painful memories, and criticism. “I fucking hate your guts right now”, the pair sing in the chorus. Never have those words be said with such dazzling effect, which is part of TOLEDO’s appeal and artistic magic.
Mellor – “Gargoyle Groove” (Reading, England)
RIYL: Sundara Karma, Blossoms, The Academic
Why We’re Digging It: Time to rev up the engines and ignite this place, and one band that seems to always bring the energy are Mellor. In their early days, the Reading-based quartet sounded like a young U2 and Foo Fighters. Their rock ‘n roll, in other words, is made for big stadiums and arenas, where they can get 75,000 patrons on their feet, dancing, and rocking out. They achieve this effect with “Gargoyle Groove”, which is a boisterous and lively number filled with awesome guitar licks and a propulsive rhythm section that adds thunder to the electrical lightning. Meanwhile, front-man Gary Kingham calls on us to not reach our breaking points. Instead, we need to reclaim our lives, which we can do with this fiery rocker as our anthem.
Album Information: The band’s forthcoming album, Problematic Passions, drops on November 11 via Triple B Records.
STONE – “Radio Ready” (Liverpool, England)
RIYL: Eagulls, Queens of the Stone Age, Kid Kapichi
Why We’re Digging It: When STONE released “Waste”, we mentioned that Fin Power (vocals, guitar), Sarah Surrage (bass), Elliot Gill (lead guitar), and Alex Smith (drums) were on the mission to blow people’s minds. Two months later, nothing has changed, as the four Liverpudlians unleash another stupendous rocker in “Radio Ready”. Flaming guitars crisscross while the rhythms plod and wail in the background. The instruments seem to be at war, which in many ways this song is about. The quartet’s foes are multiple – big record labels who want radio-friendly music and the corporations that run London where profit is king. Ingenuity, meanwhile, is set aside, but STONE have it in spades.
They’ll continue to dismantle the institutions with the support of Polydor Records.
Homeschool – “Next Day” (Brooklyn, USA)
RIYL: John Denver + Ben Gibbard + Bon Iver
Why We’re Digging It: Many will know Tom D’Agustino, who was formerly known as Active Bird Community. As the band has evolved into a solo project, the New York-based artist has adopted the pseudonym Homeschool, which seems to be a perfect name for his indie-folk, acoustic-rock approach. His music possesses a greater intimacy while his songwriting is introspective yet vivid. These traits are fully displayed on “Next Day”.
Like many of the songs on this mini-playlist, “Next Day” is the perfect, late-summer tune to spin as dusk begins to settle. D’Agustino’s guitar lightly tickles while his voice is touched with a bit of reverb to give it a heavenly quality. He sings to us about recapturing the light that made our days bright and soul filled with hope. He recalls the moments that brought joy to his family and himself, of simpler days when everything was beautiful. It’s a lovely message about what was that now seems “impossible” to repeat.
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