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Tanukichan - Natural
Tanukichan - Natural

Tanukichan - Natural


Hannah Van Loon, stage name Tanukichan, has released her album Sundays, produced and co-written by Chaz Bear of Toro Y Moi. In “Natural” the album's lead single, we see Van Loon working as a shoegaze artist in a way that is exciting both for the genre and the artist herself. The track is replete with dreamy vocals, eery guitar pitches and the crunchy yet cutting beat and amp static that has become familiar within the musical genre of shoegaze. Though lo-fi in its hazy nature, the richness of the guitar and vocals fill the song without pouring over the brim. 

“Natural” may be suggestive of basement recording sessions and lyrics written in a night time splendor, yet the technical clarity allows the work to surpass bedroom pop, lo-fi and even shoegaze bands of the past. With a general lack of specificity in the sound, lyrics and sentiments throughout the work “Natural” is a genre all of its own. The layering in the music, as well as the lyrics, (“It's natural sunlight / Grey fades to white lie / Kiss you tonight”) create an atmospheric and almost ungraspable track. However, the distorted vocals and humming sound of the song do not leave us perplexed, but rather intrigued. “Natural” is a song to dig into, piece by piece, a feast of noise and texture that leaves us hungry for more from this promising new artist.

Samantha Weisenthal on September 21, 2018
Charlie Sztyk - Pack A Day

Charlie Sztyk - Pack A Day


Singer-songwriter Charlie Sztyk has his released latest single “Pack A Day” which resembles the best of a rock folk hybrid track. With smooth guitar chords alongside drums keeping beat, each moment feels like an indie rock daydream. Based out of New Jersey, Charlie frequents Sofar gigs and NYC stages with his quirky yet clever performances. With lyrics like "sometimes I write / I don’t know why / can we not fight" "Pack a Day" examine late night talks with loved ones and the rollercoaster ride of relationships. Check out Charlie Sztyk on social media for upcoming music and shows!

Madison Hetterly on September 20, 2018
Tomberlin - Any Other Way

Tomberlin - Any Other Way


In “Any Other Way,” the opening track to the album At Weddings, we see Tomberlin deconstructing her faith in God, in her relationship, and at times in herself. This sentiment is of course vulnerable, an artistic move that could be perceived as too downtrodden, however Tomberlin’s sweeping voice and simplistic guitar allows the themes she remarks on to pierce the sweetness of the song. The economic nature of her lyrics allow for bits of humor to cut through the melodrama, with lines such as, “Feeling bad for saying / Oh my god / No I'm not kidding / Gave me a sudden feeling / That I didn't have a place,” feeling goofy rather than disorienting. 

At Weddings addresses Tomberlin loss of faith after having grown up in an intensely Baptist household, filling the song with an intimacy that feels tender rather than overly personal. “Any Other Way,” distills the feelings off of the album, how the guitar highlights rather than suffocates her soft and floating voice, how her lyrics provide a simple statement when discussing highly complex thoughts and experiences. Her sound is quiet yet intense, a dynamic that seems increasingly difficult for artists to achieve. Although the music is soft, her songs hit hard, leaving us emotional yet not overwhelmed, a cleansing that feels important in the wake of the topics Tomberlin so masterfully addresses.

Samantha Weisenthal on September 20, 2018
Bad Bad Hats - Nothing Gets Me High

Bad Bad Hats - Nothing Gets Me High


If you're not onto Bad Bad Hats yet, allow us to introduce you. Putting out one of the best albums of the year, this Minneapolis indie rock band knows how to give you a collection of versatile songs while keeping true to their sound. "Nothing Gets Me High" shows the band in its element. As frontwoman Kerry Alexander sings of the recurrence of an old love and her high tolerance to emotions there is a nonchalant spunk to her storytelling. From the start, the sonic entrance and guitar reverbs take you to where she is as she searches for him "in the basement show." 

Alexander intentional digs into the parallels of love and drugs often seen in music. Still "Nothing Gets Me High" has a new approach to this theme as Alexander equates her struggle to have romantic feelings to being unable to get high. Both clever and relatable her apathy after a failed relationship carries weight. When love comes through the door again its met with skepticism instead of the whimsy the seventeen-year-old version of yourself once greeted it with. Now older and bit more calloused, Alexander is not willing to be anything less than "the best thing that ever happened to you." Make sure to check out the rest of Lightning Round and to see what all the buzz is about!

Dara Bankole on September 19, 2018
Henry Nowhere - Not Going Back

Henry Nowhere - Not Going Back


Henry Nowhere, a solo artist better known for his band Day Wave, has released his new EP “Not Going Back.” On this project, Henry lingers between reality and day dream, with relatable sentiments about over analyzing one's position, considering their happiness in where they are. On “Not Going Back,” Henry provides us his take on lo-fi dream pop, a genre that has become popular because of bands such as Beach House and Tame Impala. “Not Going Back's” sound matches its narrative. With hazy vocals that pull away with every line, a guitar that seems to be only partially there and a fast paced yet sweet drum, the work feels as though it exists both where it is and where it’s going. Henry says of the song, “For me music serves the purpose of giving the listener that sort of carefree getaway in a 3 minute bite-size form.” “Not Going Back” is a slice of escapism, and a piece that has left us feeling at ease and filled with hope.

Samantha Weisenthal on September 19, 2018
Matt Sucich - Over My Head

Matt Sucich - Over My Head


Using pen and paper to write all of his music in his Astoria, Queens apartment, Matt Sucich redefines the neo-folk genre with his latest singles Saturn / Over My Head off his upcoming LP Thousand Dollar Dinners. Combing classic folk chords with contemporary rhythms, the two tracks are the perfect pick me up for the middle of a long day. “Over My Head” has a calm yet whimsical feel with clever lyrics that will put a smile to your face every time you pick up on a new line you didn’t hear before. On the contrast, “Saturn” has an upbeat flow with an old school folk breakdown three minutes in that reminisce of Johnny Cash or Willie Nelson. Following success of singles, “Sentimental and Fearless” and “Mirages,” he continues to impress with witty and poignant lyrics that deliberate on the complexities of life. Follow Matt Sucich on social media and check out Saturn / Over My Head now!

Madison Hetterly on September 19, 2018
NEIL FRANCES - Took A While

NEIL FRANCES - Took A While


NEIL FRANCES has that breezy type of sound that makes the perfect music to transition from one season to the next. “Took A While” off of their most recent EP drop of the same name, gears us up for those crips fall breezes and cool autumnal air. Looking introspectively at the way we compare love to games, the band decides to move against the tide and sidesteps the notion, disregarding the game and perfection entirely. While we may come to these realizations through chaos (“I'm never in control/ ‘Cos in my head I'm so confused”), it strikes a chord all the same. See NEIL FRANCES live at our first ever LA dinner party November 4!

Natasha Cucullo on September 18, 2018
Kyson - Have My Back

Kyson - Have My Back


A beautifully mastered track, Kyson’s “Have My Back” plays with reverb to create a dreamlike soundscape. Opening with languid arpeggios and introspective vocals, the Berlin-based artist invites us into a melancholic recollection of relationships past. We free-flow into electro-folk as the drum-driven hook arrives. As the song progresses, Kyson’s vocals decay more and more, creating a controlled chaos of cacophony. The structured vocals layered with ricocheting body give way to the lyrical narrative, reflecting a moment of epiphany in a muddled relationship. This single will have you lost in your own head and demands to be repeated over and over again.

Lizzy Jones on September 18, 2018
Lala lala - Destroyer

Lala lala - Destroyer


Lala lala, Chicago artist Lillie West’s band, has released their lead single "Destroyer," an introduction to their upcoming album The Lamb, out in September from Hardly Art records. The album comes out of West’s recent personal chaos: a home break in, a loss of several close friends, the decision to become sober after suffering from addiction. The arrangement of the album, the blending of post punk with dream pop, includes synths, drums, guitars and the saxophone, providing listeners with the sound of learning how to balance. In this way, West has allowed us to peer into how she is creating a new space in her life, balancing the complex sounds throughout the work to create a singular and joyous sound. This, paired with the thought-provoking and poignant lyrics that make up the work, has allowed Lala lala to create an album that is not only healing for the artist, but also for anyone who listens. The narrative of the song is about West going back and forth between dealing and accepting blame for the chaos in her life. Whether our destroyers are addiction, the people around us or at times ourselves, the work leaves us feeling clean and ready to take it all on, headphones in ears and song on repeat.

Samantha Weisenthal on September 18, 2018
Plastic Picnic - Doubt

Plastic Picnic - Doubt


Up and coming Brooklyn-based indie band Plastic Picnic have done it yet again and have released another dark, dance inducing synth pop track with their latest single “Doubt.” The track is fueled by beautiful blend of aggressive and driving guitar riffs, hypnotic synths, optimistic drums and smooth vocals that sound hopeful and keep listeners dancing despite the vulnerable lyrics that detail lovers drifting apart. The narrative voice in the song gives listeners a glimpse into the mind of the modern millennial regarding the anxieties they may feel in their personal relationships and how they combat loneliness. As the song comes to its peak, it breaks into a synth-centric bridge, offering a refreshing moment of relief from the track’s previously expressed “doubt.” It’s this moment and the rest of the song that almost act as a sonic metaphor for the euphoria you may feel when you realize things may be ok, despite how hard the situation at hand may be.

Alessandra Rincon on September 17, 2018
Mac DeMarco - Honey Moon

Mac DeMarco - Honey Moon


With saccharine guitars against a husky vocal timbre, Mac DeMarco gifts us with a cover of Haruomi Hosono’s “Honey Moon.” The iconic Japanese producer released the original back in 1975, and it's no surprise that our Canadian singer/songwriter picked it up following his interest in Yellow Magic Orchestra and Ryuichi Sakamoto. DeMarco’s upbeat twist reinvigorates the track with new life, substituting layered guitars riffs for experimental samples. The love song translates roughly to “my heart sinking in the sunset / honey moon in the sky” and will have you romantically swaying all night long.

Lizzy Jones on September 17, 2018

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