Self-identified “queer alien DJ” AWWFUL have already established themselves as a pop music authority in the Montreal music scene through a number of highly lauded DJ nights, including the monthly Glitter Bomb at Bar Le Ritz. Their debut single “BB” only drives that point home, serving up a healthy dose of bubbly synthpop sheen that feels both future-forward yet reminiscent of our favourite early-2000s pop bangers. The track’s mid-tempo stomp leaves plenty of headroom for its armada of sparkly arpeggios to cut through, keeping things irresistibly danceable from start to finish. We’ll definitely be wearing out the replay button on this one.
We’ve had Lydia Ainsworth’s second full-length on heavy rotation since it came out on March 31st, and for good reason! From start to finish, the record sees Lydia breaking apart pop motifs and reconfiguring them in delightfully weird ways, exploring a wide range of sonic palettes but always tying everything back together with her signature vocal layering. Every tone on this album feels staunchly deliberate, and with so many elements to dive into, repeat listens find us discovering something new every time. Darling of the Afterglow strikes a perfect balance between busier tracks — like your future summer anthem “What Is It?” — with delicately sparse compositions the likes of “Afterglow” and a devastatingly beautiful cover of “Wicked Game” by Chris Isaak. We already want more!
Darling of the Afterglow is available now on vinyl and digitally from Arbutus Records and Lydia’s Bandcamp. She’s currently on tour, with performances in Toronto and Montreal next week. Details on her Bandcamp page.
Young Galaxy have a serious knack for evolving their sound in pleasantly unexpected directions. Their latest offering, “Stay for Real,” is a deliciously dark call to arms in trying political times, urging us to never let get of our self-truths amid all the turbulence. The track strikes a razor-sharp balance between tension and faith, with an array of subdued arpeggios bubbling up below the surface to envelop Catherine McCandless’ crisp, celestial vocals. It’s music for the future — quite literally, since all proceeds from the self-released single go to Pivot Legal Society (Canada), ACLU (USA), and W.A.V.E. (EU).
“Stay for Real” is available for purchase on Bandcamp.