Currents

  • Housewife

    Housewife

    “Bones (God Like You)”

    Toronto duo Housewife’s only just getting started at 19 and 20 years old and are quite simply the future. Brighid Fry (she/they) and Pascale Padilla (they/she) are queer and allies, activists and co-founders of the climate initiative Music Declares Emergency and while to be sure their Twitter sums ‘em up concisely as “Opinionated feminist indie band,” We say they they epitomize one of our favorite discoveries this year!

     

    Though the pair began with folksier roots, their new moves are more broad and both members share an existential streak which manifests itself Perfectly on the new single “Bones (God Like You).”

     

    “LOVE THIS! Impeccable dream pop…one of my fave tracks of June 2022!” Aaron Axelsen/FLOOD FM

     

    + Nominated for 2021 Canadian Music Week Indies Awards for Duo/Band Of The Year

     

    + Toured with Broken Social Scene, Born Ruffians, Barenaked Ladies

     

    + Co-Founders of Music Declares Emergency (climate initiative)

     

    Fry and Padilla already released their debut self-titled EP in 2017 and a follow-up EP, “Better Daughter,” which the CBC named one of the ’22 Albums You Need to Hear’ in the summer of 2020. Additionally, they’ve already won a Canadian Folk Music Award, a Toronto Independent Music Award, the Canadian Songwriting Competition (in the under 18 category), and the Slaight Music It’s Your Shot award.

     

    Housewife’s newest music showcases the friends’ experiences living and writing through the end of high school and the pandemic, as well as navigating the life changes that come with growing up. Their joy pervades though, even as Fry says, “we’re figuring out relationships and where we stand in the world.”

    Listen: Housewife – “Bones (God Like You)” (clean radio edit)

    Housewife – “Bones (God Like You)” (clean radio edit)

  • Homes At Night

    Homes At Night

    "Bonnaroo"

    Homes At Night create Alt Anthems that blur the boundaries between genre and generation. A sound that’s both nostalgic and modern, layered with organic instruments, synth-driven soundscapes, cinematic hooks, and a percussive pulse. Hank Compton and Aksel Coe blend their indie sensibilities with story-driven approach, so naturally we’re eager to bring to you first their new single “Bonnaroo.”

     

    “Writing songs for us was just an excuse to hang out and try to make sense of what was going on in our lives at the time. We were both dealing with recent breakups and losing our ability to be on the road due to the pandemic; writing together quickly became our weapon against the feelings of loneliness and isolation that so many people were feeling at that time. ‘Bonnaroo’ was the first of these many songs we wrote that summer and really is what started this band. Although written through the lens of a dying relationship, ‘Bonnaroo’ is really about the inevitable changes that happen to all of us when we try to cut off things that are holding us back.” – Homes At Night

     

    Created during the global pandemic that brought both songwriters Hank Compton and Aksel Coe’s schedules to a halt, Homes At Night began as a series of pressure-free recording sessions in the latter’s basement.

     

    Free to indulge their musical whims about dying relationships, new beginnings, and catharsis, bouncing between bombastic anthems and hushed, Elliot Smith-worthy indie pop, the pair turned the uncertainty of the modern moment — a time when Hank and Aksel found themselves homebound, unable to make a living as touring musicians — into a new kind of stability. It’s music for the heart and the head, created by two songwriters who bring their own palette to the grey area between genres.

    Listen: Homes At Night – “Bonnaroo” (clean radio edit)

    Homes At Night – “Bonnaroo” (clean radio edit)

  • Ocean Alley

    Ocean Alley

    “Deepest Darkness”

    Australia’s beloved psych-rockers Ocean Alley’s new “Deepest Darkness” uplifts and commands attention from its opening riff—a love song, about how someone can bring the best out of you, even in your darkest moments. The single accents the hallmarks that have long-defined Ocean Alley’s sound, from intoxicating echoing vocals to layered instrumentation, laden with fuzz and reverb, however this latest effort dials up the ferocity across each chorus, continually increasing the crunch and intensity, and We’re Full On Elated to deliver it to you first!

     

    Ocean Alley have spent the past decade creating a unique lane for themselves as a proudly independent band, their vision and sound guided solely by their instinct and passion. The band debuted at #3 on the ARIA Album Chart with their ARIA-nominated third album “Lonely Diamond” (2020), garnering four star reviews from the likes of NME Australia and Rolling Stone Australia. The album followed the success of 2018’s “Chiaroscuro” which propelled the band into national prominence with the double platinum-selling single “Confidence” taking out #1 in Triple J’s Hottest 100 of 2018. 

     

    Ocean Alley have solidified their position as one of Australia’s most exciting touring acts. They have made their mark on the local and international circuit with their consistent touring schedule, selling over 100,000 tickets to date across countless shows in North America, Europe, UK and New Zealand, as well as playing memorable sets in Australia at Splendour In The Grass, Bluesfest, Laneway amongst others, as well as overseas at Reading & Leeds (UK), BottleRock (USA) Sziget (HUN) and more.

    Listen: Ocean Alley – “Deepest Darkness”

    Ocean Alley – “Deepest Darkness”

  • PEI

    PEI

    "Honest"

    Pei is the long awaited solo project by Joji Malani. Pei (pronounced “pay”) is a Fijian word for baby, and debut single “Honest” hums with a warm, mesmerizing, and matured confidence from the former and founding member of Gang Of Youths, and speaks of finding one’s own place in the world.

     

    “It’s hard to be honest about what we’re going through and how much it affects us. It’s not even the big stuff. Losing a job or the end of a relationship can destabilize us in ways we don’t expect and sometimes we’re too embarrassed to admit it and subdue the feeling. But it manifests itself in other areas of your life and you can turn to things and become unrecognizable to those around you all for the sake of filling that void. I had two friends who were going through hardship but couldn’t be upfront with how it was affecting them. It was painful to watch them struggle and turn to things that you hadn’t seen them do before. We have all been there and this song is about relating to being in that spot and being real with each other. Because that’s a big part of friendship.” – Pei

     

    Pei is a homecoming, a returning to the roots and to the ground from where Joji Malani came from. A founding member of Gang Of Youths, Malani returned to Sydney from London, following his departure from the group in 2019. After almost a decade of writing in studios and touring the world, he nestled up inside of the home studio of close friend and longtime collaborator, Tim Fitz (Middle Kids), to bring Pei to life.

     

    Throughout the Pei project, Malani draws from his identity as a Fijian-Australian, gracefully weaving contemporary indie, pop and rock influences within memories of Fiji and overtures to Fijian culture. Representing one of Malani’s initial forays into songwriting as a solo venture, it’s fitting that “Honest” should now introduce the wider world to Pei.

    Listen: PEI – “Honest” (radio edit)

    PEI – “Honest” (radio edit)

  • Built To Spill

    Built To Spill

    When The Wind Forgets Your Name

    Since its inception in 1992, Built to Spill founder Doug Martsch intended his beloved band to be a collaborative project, an ever-evolving group of incredible musicians making music and playing live together. “I wanted to switch the lineup for many reasons. Each time we finish a record I want the next one to sound totally different. It’s fun to play with people who bring in new styles and ideas,” says Martsch. “And it’s nice to be in a band with people who aren’t sick of me yet.”

     

    Following several albums and EPs on Pacific Northwest independent labels, including the unmistakably canonical indie rock classic, “There’s Nothing Wrong With Love,” released on Sub Pop offshoot Up Records in 1994, Martsch signed with Warner Brothers from 1995 to 2016. He and his rotating cast of cohorts recorded six more, inarguably great albums during that time. There was also a live album, and a solo record. While the band’s impeccable recorded catalog is the entry point, Built to Spill live is an essential FORCE of its own: heavy, psychedelic, melodic and visceral tunes blaring from amps that sound as if they’re powered by Mack trucks.

     

    Now in 2022, Built to Spill returns with “When the Wind Forgets Your Name” (out 9/9), Martsch’s unbelievably great new album (and also his eighth full-length)… with a fresh new label. “I’m psyched: I’ve wanted to be on Sub Pop since I was a teenager. And I think I’m the first fifty year-old they’ve ever signed.”

     

    “When the Wind Forgets Your Name” continues expanding the Built to Spill universe in new and exciting ways. In 2018 Martsch’s good fortune and keen intuition brought him together with Brazilian lo-fi punk artist and producer Le Almeida, and his long-time collaborator, João Casaes, both of the psychedelic jazz rock band, Oruã. On discovering their music Martsch fell in love with it right away. So when he needed a new backing band for shows in Brazil, he asked them to join. “We rehearsed at their studio in downtown Rio de Janeiro and I loved everything about it. They had old crappy gear. The walls were covered with xeroxed fliers. They smoked tons of weed,” Martsch says.

     

    The Brazil dates went so well Martsch, Almeida, and Casaes made the decision to continue playing together throughout 2019, touring the US and Europe. During soundchecks they learned new songs Martsch had written, and when the touring ended, they recorded the bass and drum tracks at his rehearsal space in Boise. After Almeida and Casaes flew home, Martsch began overdubbing guitars and vocals by himself.

     

    Martsch, Almeida, and Casaes had planned to mix the album together later in 2020 somewhere in Brazil or the US, but the pandemic kept them from reuniting in person. “We were able to send the tracks back and forth though, so we were still able to collaborate on the mixing process.”

     

    What emerged is “When the Wind Forgets Your Name,” a complex and cohesive blend of the artists’ distinct musical ideas. Alongside Built to Spill’s poetic lyrics and themes, the experimentation and attention to detail produces an album full of unique, vivid, and timeless sounds.

    Listen: Built To Spill – “Gonna Lose”

    Built To Spill – “Gonna Lose”

  • Grand Am

    Grand Am

    "Here Comes The Man"

    Grand Am’s new “Here Comes The Man” is a summery, swagger bomb ‘bout the baddest damn man you ever met! You May Already have been hearing this bit of high-energy LA x Chicago duo if you’ve been watching any baseball this summer, and as MLB and ESPN have adopted the single for live broadcasts, soundtracking highlights from the year’s brightest and best.

     

    “Grand Am explode with raucous riffs and electric energy” — Atwood Magazine

     

    As Grand Am prepares to release a new full-length album in the fall, the pair is already making plenty of noise. Featured as part of the ‘Emerging Artists Series’ at Summerfest Music Festival and with TV placements on HBO, Showtime, Bravo, MTV and the CW, 2022 promises to be a busy year for the band.

    Listen: Grand Am – “Here Comes The Man”

    Grand Am – “Here Comes The Man”

  • Kiwi Jr.

    Kiwi Jr.

    Chopper

    Toronto’s Kiwi Jr. Are Back! Not only with a memorably “chilly, post-punk-leaning lead single” (Stereogum) in the new “Night Vision,” but with word of the upcoming new album “Chopper,” as well as a handful of dates in the states on a heck of a double bill with label mates Weird Nightmare (see tours page—I Know?!)!

     

    “Before ‘Night Vision’ was 100% written, just the basic idea of it existing as a Kiwi Jr. song inspired us and set the tone for the record. A lot of the images in the lyrics are of teenagers driving around, trying to make plans, sharing the aux, putting their parents’ car in the ditch, etc.  But the idea at the center of the song is that of working up the nerve to make a big decision. Like a boxer getting pumped up before a fight.” –Kiwi Jr.

     

    Kiwi Jr.’s third album, “Chopper” (out 8/12), overseen by trusted pilot Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade, Handsome Furs) on storied Sub Pop Records. Turning nocturnal with necks mock turtle, Kiwi Jr. takes neon flight off the digital cliff – like The Monkees starring in Blade Runner; like Michael Mann directs Encino Man. Ten songs with synth shimmer, zen gongs with yard strimmer. The signs along the highway read “LESS BAR, MORE NOIR AHEAD.” Ah, those late summer, Joe Strummer, Home on the Range Rover Blues.

     

    Kiwi Jr. brings the “Chopper” to a new space, demilitarizing the technology just like flasks, aviators, and cargo shorts. Graceful in the air above, but when the ‘Chopper’ lands, there’s chaos on the ground.  Kiwi Jr. shout, “Look Out!” When it gets close, it’ll blow the hat right off of your head. Hold onto your hats, Babies.

    Listen: Kiwi Jr. – “Night Vision”

    Kiwi Jr. – “Night Vision”

  • Day Wave

    Day Wave

    Pastlife

    LA indie-rock pioneer Day Wave (the project of singer/instrumentalist Jackson Phillips) tackles themes of love, loss, and maneuvering life in your 30s on his newly released album “Pastlife”.

     

    “Pastlife,” the first new full-length record from Day Wave in five years, is a raw and immersive meditation, meandering through different dreamscapes of breezy, oceanside indie rock, plucky, minimalist bedroom pop, and tidal waves of cosmic emo and stratospheric shoegaze. It feels like walking through a room of artifacts from previous stages of your life, now sun-bleached and peeling at the edges, but still as intoxicating and powerful as ever. “Pastlife” isn’t saddened though; it’s full of hope and energy.

     

    Jackson Phillips’ knack for ear-catching melodies and simple, fresh production is cherished than ever in a world saturated with overly-produced tracks. In “Pastlife,” Phillips takes it back to the basics of indie—a space he’s been spearheading for the past 10 years and continues to rise to the top in, producing a new generation of acts like KennyHoopla, Windser, Hazel English and more.

    Listen: Day Wave – “See You When The End’s Near” feat. KennyHoopla (clean radio edit)

    Day Wave – “See You When The End’s Near” feat. KennyHoopla (clean radio edit)

  • Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

    Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever

    Endless Rooms

    Australia’s Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever have released a new single/video, “My Echo,” from their newly released album, “Endless Rooms.” Following first two singles, “The Way It Shatters” and “Tidal River,” “My Echo” is a guitar-driven earworm about being surrounded by phone screens, computer screens, tv screens, paranoia and loss of time and place,” says RBCF‘s Fran Keaney. “The album recording is pretty faithful to the very first rough recording. Most of Tom’s leads were improvised but they became the DNA of the song.”

     

    Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever is Fran Keaney, Joe White, Marcel Tussie and brothers Tom  and Joe Russo. Following 2020’s “Sideways To New Italy,”Endless Rooms” is a testament to the collaborative spirit and live power of the band, and is them doing what we do best: chasing down songs in a room together.” “Endless Rooms” is the band’s most cinematic, stylistically diverse and ambitious album yet. Self-produced by the band with Matt Duffy, and mixed by Scott Horscroft (DMA’S, Silverchair, The Presets), the new album pulls back the curtain on what Rolling Blackouts C.F. can achieve, revealing a wider screen, deeper narrative currents, more confident shades, and an excitement at letting their tumbling brand of ragged, nervy pop wander and breathe.

     

    It’s that hope that’s seen Rolling Blackouts C.F. join an Australian lineage of bands bold enough to marry the country’s evocative landscapes with the urban romance, passions and politics of its characters. Matched with a worldly perspective afforded by constant touring, the whiplash of it coming to a halt, and the inherent longing in trying to make sense of it, Rolling Blackouts C.F. have unlocked their most compelling artistic statement yet. “We were almost going to call this album self-titled,” says Russo. “But we called it Endless Rooms because we work best thinking of each song as its own bare room or universe to build. Somehow, it all hangs together.”

    Listen: Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – “Blue Eye Lake” (radio edit)

    Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – “Blue Eye Lake” (radio edit)

  • Mansionair

    Mansionair

    Happiness, Guaranteed

    GRAMMY-nominated trio Mansionair are prepared to smash any notion of a sophomore slump on their album: “Happiness, Guaranteed”. The stunning single “Next High,” a reflective indie-electronic cut with airy vocals and sumptuous guitar grooves, all of which features an added assist from multi-instrumentalist Kim Tee (otherwise known as Clairo’s trusted touring guitarist and music director). It’s a bold statement from the Sydney based act as they smoothly follow up 2021’s “Don’t Wait (feat Yahtzel)” and “MORE,” a pair of transcendent singles, and as the trio embark on a summer North American tour bookended by performances in New York on May 31 and Phoenix on June 25.

     

    The band explains their forthcoming album “is about the cyclical nature of our modern dissatisfaction. It’s a brief dive into the frustrations our desires bring in our attempts to reach a level of contentment. Each song explores the pursuit of happiness within our relationships, our work, and our wealth all whilst finding ways to be content with what you have whilst balancing a desire to grow.

     

    As for the gestation of “Next High,” they add, “We met Hayley (aka, Kim Tee) backstage on the 2019 Laneway tour. She plays with Clairo and they always played directly after our set so we kept running into her and catching each other’s performances. After keeping in touch over the years she sent us an idea she had for a song and the rest figured itself out. The song attempts to capture that feeling of just being hopelessly obsessed with someone and not needing a reason to hang out with them.

     

    Since forming in 2014, Mansionair have notched a slew of accolades that highlight the band’s knack for catchy, deeply compelling songwriting. With a GRAMMY Award nomination under their belt for their smash collaboration “Line of Sight” with ODESZA and WYNNE, they’ve also performed at bucket list festivals from Coachella to The Great Escape while selling out storied venues like New York’s Bowery Ballroom in the process. That all goes without mentioning the 270 million streams they’ve notched across streaming platforms and multiple gold ARIA-accredited tracks in their home country, making waves wherever they set their sights.

    Listen: Mansionair – “Next High (feat. Kim Tee)”

    Mansionair – “Next High (feat. Kim Tee)”

  • The Afghan Whigs

    The Afghan Whigs

    How Do You Burn?

    As The Afghan Whigs announce their first studio album in five years “How Do You Burn?” (out 9/9 and Named by their friend the late Mark Lanegan, who also appears on the album), they’ve not only embarked on an extensive tour, but have pulled from the upcoming album the powerful new single and video “The Getaway”!

     

    “their most direct presentation of abstract passion ever” – Rolling Stone

     

    “Dulli rides the band’s blend of R&B insinuation, hip-hop cool and hard rock invasiveness into corners of experience where few rockers of his generation have rested” – NPR

     

    “Three decades after forming, the Afghan Whigs remain vital for its willingness to ignore boundaries” – New York Times

     

    “How Do You Burn?” is The Afghan Whigs ninth album overall and following on from the brace of widely acclaimed records they’ve made previously since re-grouping in 2012, “Do to the Beast” (2014) and “In Spades” (2017). “How Do You Burn?” picks up the baton laid down by each of those records and runs it to the horizon.

     

    Work on it was begun in September 2020 – the COVID pandemic having forced Whigs frontman/songwriter Greg Dulli to abandon plans to tour his highly praised solo album, ‘Random Desire’ – and continued over the next 14 months.

     

    The global pandemic dictated also that the band record largely apart from, and in different locations to, each other: Dulli, his co-producer Christopher Thorn and drummer Patrick Keeler together in California; bassist John Curley, guitarist Jon Skibic and strings man Rick Nelson laying down and engineering their own parts in Cincinnati, New Jersey and New Orleans, respectively.

     

    “Once we got the system down, we started flying,” says Dulli.

     

    For his supporting cast, Dulli called upon several serial collaborators including the late Mark Lanegan, who was a regular in Dulli’s Twilight Singers, a partner in The Gutter Twins and a close friend.  Lanegan makes his The Afghan Whigs debut singing backup vocals on two tracks.  “It was Mark who named the album,” Dulli remarked.

    Listen: The Afghan Whigs – “The Getaway”

    The Afghan Whigs – “The Getaway”

  • Weird Nightmare

    Weird Nightmare

    Weird Nightmare

    The self-titled album from Weird Nightmare is the electrifying new project from METZ guitarist and singer Alex Edkins.

     

    “Weird Nightmare” showcases a new side of Edkins’ already-established songwriting, with a raw, sugary blast of distorted pop. The new album exhibits all of his main band’s bite with an unexpected, yet totally satisfying, sweetness. Imagine The Amps covering Big Star, or the gloriously hissy miniature epics of classic-era Guided by Voices combined with the bombast of Copper Blue-era Sugar—just tons of red-line distortion cut with the type of tunecraft that thrills the moment it hits your ears.

     

    On the first single, “Searching For You”, Edkins shares, “it’s a fun, no nonsense rock ‘n’ roll song. It’s about searching for meaning and inspiration all around us. In my mind, the ‘you’ in the chorus refers to something bigger than companionship or love, it’s that intangible thing we all look for but never find. ”  Directed by Ryan Thompson and animated by Jordan “Dr. Cool” Minkoff, it’s time to step into a world of ultimate weirdness, and get served a hot slice of rock and roll deliciousness in the new video for “Searching For You.”

    Listen: Weird Nightmare – “Lusitania”

    Weird Nightmare – “Lusitania”

  • Windser

    Windser

    “Memory”

    Audacy’s ALTERNATIVE Pick Of The Week!

     

    Windser is the solo moniker of Santa Cruz, California born singer-songwriter Jordan Topf. After retreating to a house in the rural Northern California mountains in early 2020, he emerged from isolation with songs that reflected the deep emotions and growth one experiences in moments of change. The songs are introspective with gentle acoustic guitars, ethereal layers of vocals, and modern rhythms to paint an emotionally vulnerable picture.

     

    On October 29th, 2021, Macklemore released his comeback single “Next Year” featuring Windser.  Macklemore said, “I love Windser’s voice and energy on this song. He originally just cut a reference demo, but Ryan and I both loved him on this record from the jump. He killed it, and his performance perfectly fits the message of the song. I must say, he’s a talented and humble guy, and I’m excited for more people to get to know him.”

     

    “’Memory’ is a song inspired by a string of nostalgia revolving around the formative experiences I had growing up in Santa Cruz, California. ‘Memory’ is my outlook on how youth shapes us forever. For me personally writing this song was a way to appreciate the past, embrace where I am at in life, and learning to be more in the moment. I co-wrote it with my good friend Jackson of Day Wave, whose production I’ve always loved.” — Windser

    Listen: Windser – “Memory”

    Windser – “Memory”

  • Richie Quake

    Richie Quake

    “Crawl (Feat. Anna Shoemaker)”

    Groundbreaking singer-songwriter/producer Richie Quake joins forces with fellow Brooklyn, NY-based singer-songwriter Anna Shoemaker for “Crawl (Feat. Anna Shoemaker).” Invigorated by a shifting temporal energy, the new single sees the two artists both on the precipice of fame, surrendering to reality as they hunt for satisfaction and success in the city they share.

     

    “People just want to be happy, to feel love, and to be at peace, but everyone goes about that journey in a different way. No matter which path you decide, there are pros and cons that you have to live with. When you look at life, it can become distorted, and the structures that the mind clings to start to lose their shape, like when you say a word over and over again until it becomes meaningless. But you stay on the ride and hope for the best. Chasing highs, riding lows.” – Richie Quake 

     

    Richie Quake – whose boundary-busting work as both artist and producer recently saw him featured on Spotify’s hugely influential Lorem playlist. He’s the primary writer, producer, and instrumentalist; playing guitar, bass, keys, drums, on all of his songs, and his sound is identifiable with its cinematic, retro-indie, alternative flare. While still working on music of his own, Richie is also passionate about writing and producing for other artists, and has earned a wide range of critical applause from such high profile outlets as VICE, PAPER,

     

    NYLON, Pigeons and Planes, KCRW, Lyrical Lemonade, EARMILK, and The FADER, to name but a few.

     

    “Effortlessly smooth…Endlessly listenable” – VICE

     

    “The Brooklyn-based singer and producer crafts futuristic bedroom booming tracks for the emotional and introspective listener, making you feel cozy in all the right places.” – NYLON

     

    “(dimly lit with streaks of neon synths and huge kicks drums, evoking a fashionable basement party where (his) softly spun vocal melodies somehow cut through the bustle.” – TheFADER

     

    “There’s something to be said for the risk-takers in indie music these days. Creatives that work outside of the box and freely jump between genres and styles are what the entire genre was built upon.  One of the most inventive of these creatives is none other than Brooklyn-based Richie Quake, an artist who has often flirted with elements of funk, psychedelia, lo-fi, and soul in his music.”– EARMILK

    Listen: Richie Quake – “Crawl (Feat. Anna Shoemaker)”

    Richie Quake – “Crawl (Feat. Anna Shoemaker)”