NEW INDIE MUSIC - WEEK 24
Did anyone else genuinely tear up at the announcement of the death of iTunes?! No word of a lie, fam – some of my best years were spent obsessively organizing my iTunes library. It's legitimately sad to think that kids nowadays will never know the struggle of importing all of those pirated MP3s and album covers from LimeWire </3. Anyways, that's enough time spent looking back at the past. The main reason that we're here today is to look ahead to the future with the latest edition of We Are: The Guard's New Indie Music. Headphones at the ready, then, as it's time to check out the following songs from Bon Iver, Whitney, AURORA, K.Flay, Pixies, and more.
BON IVER – HEY, MA
Bon Iver is back, and is it me, or does the world suddenly seem a whole lot lighter and brighter as a result?! “Hey, Ma” is a beautifully nostalgic paean that finds Justin Vernon reflecting on his childhood – and more specifically, his relationship with his mother – with warm synths and rolling drums backing the Eau Claire native as his voice soars to towering heights in the gorgeous chorus: “Full time, you talk your money up/While it's living in a coal mine/Tall time to call your ma/Hey Ma, hey Ma.”
MUNA – NUMBER ONE FAN
It's not always easy believing in yourself – especially when your head is swimming full of negative voices and crippling insecurities – but MUNA are here to help you practice radical self-love on their latest single. “Oh my God like, I'm your number one fan/So iconic, like big, like stan,” sings MUNA frontwoman Katie Gavin on “Number One Fan” – an 80s-indebted synth-pop strut that'll soon have you dancing to the tune of your inner cheerleader.
WHITNEY – GIVING UP
The sun finally sets on a failing relationship on the lovely latest single from country-soul duo Whitney. “Though we started losing touch/I've been hanging on because/You're the only one I love/Even when you're giving up,” sings Whitney frontman Julien Ehrlich over warmly undulating twangs before making way for a swelling, trumpet-laden bridge on the cut, which is taken from Whitney's forthcoming album Forever Turned Around.
AURORA – DAYDREAMER
This one is dedicated to the stargazers. The wishful thinkers. The ones who spend every waking hour staring longingly out of the window, fantasizing of faraway lands. Jump headfirst into the mystical world of AURORA on “Daydreamer” – a bombastic, pummelling ode to the imagination and its creative powers as taken from the Bergen singer-songwriter's recent album A Different Kind Of Human – Step 2.
OYSTER KIDS – BREATHE
Every once in a while, we all need to hit the “reset” button on life. That's exactly what Los Angeles four-piece OYSTER KIDS are doing on their unbelievably catchy latest single “Breathe.” “Everybody, let the feelings go/We can start brand new,” sings Andrew Eapen over a blend of exhilarating electronics and driving drums on the ridiculously infectious synth-pop cut, which the frontman says is “about starting over.” He continues: “I have to remind myself that it's okay to move on, begin again, and not be afraid of change.”
LOST UNDER HEAVEN – TEEN VIOLENCE
Lost Under Heaven – the Manchester duo comprising of WU LYF's Ellery Roberts and Ebony Hoorn – are back and sounding more urgent than ever on “Teen Violence.” The follow-up to January's Love Hates What You Become finds Ellery and Ebony conjuring a kind of post-apocalyptic dystopia where chaos and disorder reign supreme, with both vocalists screaming at what feels like the top of their lungs over an increasingly earsplitting industrial din. Pro-tip: Play it LOUD!
K.FLAY – SISTER
Kristine Meredith Flaherty, better known to most of us as K.Flay, celebrates the joys of sisterhood on her latest single, the aptly titled “Sister.” “Even when you're saying that you hate me/I know that the feeling isn't true/If you killed somebody/No, I wouldn't tell nobody on you,” sings Kristine over a throbbing bassline on the cut – a playful blast of synth-rock euphoria that's sure to resonate with anyone who's ever experienced that unbreakable sisterly bond.
TY SEGALL – TASTE
Ahead of the release of his album First Taste in August, Ty Segall has shared the lead single “Taste.” Listen as jungle-esque drums and an unrelenting barrage of noise and fuzz provide a suitably intense backdrop for the Laguna Beach native to nothing short of let RIP! on the cut, which comes accompanied by a Joshua Erkman-directed official video that sees Ty turn mass murderer-cum-dance champion.
BLEACHED – KISS YOU GOODBYE
Just in time for the end of cuffing season, Los Angeles sibling duo Bleached are back with the funky “Kiss You Goodbye.” Over a groovy bassline and jangly, shimmering guitar chords, listen as frontwoman Jennifer Clavin bids farewell to a lover as she drives off into the summer sunset on the song – a kiss-off anthem in the making that's lifted from Bleached's forthcoming album Don't You Think You've Had Enough?.
PIXIES – ON GRAVEYARD HILL
One week on from the return of Sleater-Kinney, Pixies are here to keep the dream of the 90s alive (get it?!) this Monday morning with “On Graveyard Hill.” It goes without saying that the Boston legends are back to their very best on the first single to be unveiled from their forthcoming album Beneath the Eyrie, with a squall of guitars accompanying Black Francis as he recites from what feels like some gothic grimoire: “On the graveyard hill she's calling out her curse/I'm taking my last breath with each chapter and each verse/And soon I will be killed.”
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Jess Grant is a frustrated writer hailing from London, England. When she isn't tasked with disentangling her thoughts from her brain and putting them on paper, Jess can generally be found listening to The Beatles, or cooking vegetarian food.