The new Braids record is now officially one of our most anticipated of the year. First we had the fiery call-to-arms of “Miniskirt”, and now we have a tremendous and emotionally cathartic anthem to go with it: “Taste.” “We experience the love that we think we deserve” is one of the finest lyrics in recent memory, and it’s delivered by singer Raphaelle Standelle-Preston with the force and catchiness of a mainstream pop hook. “Taste” is a mid-tempo mainstream-leaning single that could be commercially huge but still sounds intimately connected to the band’s roots. What a wonderful development, we didn’t think Braids could get any better.
We love Calgary’s Tigerwing so so much, if you’re not familiar with her music, start with the incredible I Want to Rip Your Heart Out, which was one of our favourite EPs of 2014. Not featured on that EP, however, was her most recent single, “Coax”, which thoroughly impressed us late last year. It’s an epic, cavernous, thundering song that hits at Fever Ray while taking that sound to new distorted places. She just released the video for the single, and it’s amazing. Creepy, dark, mysterious poses in otherworldly costumes, how can you go wrong?
You can grab a free download (optional donation) of “Coax” from Tigerwing’s Bandcamp.
We can always count on Man Made Hill to take us in musical directions we hardly thought possible. This time the Toronto experimental electronic musician/mad scientist leads us on a falsetto quasi-baroque journey about a mystical night visitor: the Angelchylde. It’s frenetic, cacophanous, and wonderful.
You can explore Man Made Hill’s mindbending back catalogue on Bandcamp.
It’s been over a year since Violence’s wonderful debut LP Erlebnis, and new news from the Ottawa minimal synthpop duo is always greeted with excitement and dour dancing round these parts. We’ve got a new EP to look forward to! Le Théâtre is coming out soon on Montreal’s ever-amazing Visage Musique, and this first single is a solid indication that it’ll be excellent. Sublime yet restrained electronic pop with a throbbing bass, creepy synth lines, and reverbed-out vocal melodies, we’re swooning.
Calgary’s Bonnaventure James might be a familiar name for Silent Shout regulars – indeed, he used to write for us back in the day. Since he departed for the bizarre reality of the outside world, he’s still kept busy making music, releasing a great LP in 2012 and a single under the Finchers moniker last year. But we’ve been awaiting his next move, and if new single “Space is Lost” is any indication, it seems like he’s headed in a more downtempo direction. It’s a melancholy, guitar-laden track with sparse drum machines and heartfelt vocals. Might be our new favourite from him!
The track’s available from Bandcamp. Go grab it!
“Okay, we’re gonna blast off, ready, here we go?” asks Tom Whalen, aka Space Bros., who’s also known for playing as a live member of Jay Arner‘s band (and its Energy Slime offshoot), before inviting us to come aboard his spaceship. Well count us in for the cosmic voyage, through one of the strangest electronic pop releases we’ve heard so far this year. Sci-fi imagery abounds on his debut record In the Dreamtime of the Saucer People, as spacey synths twist through reverb-y interstellar landscapes on our way to the “Crystal City”. Standout single “Come Aboard the Spaceship” is a deeply catchy galactic funk track that recalls some of the best of classic Ariel Pink, but it’s just the poppiest apex on a record that’s extremely worthy of repeated listens, particularly if you’re in outer space.
Although Toronto’s Math Rosen has been recording electronic music for about a decade, Ada Vale is his first project in which he sings, and thanks goodness he’s picked up the microphone, because his first EP under the new moniker, simply titled Three Songs, is seriously excellent. First track “The Illusionist” is the most immediately gratifying on the pop front, featuring melancholy vocals over a soupy production, anchored by a grooving dubby beat with a guitar lick repeatedly peeking its head out of the murk. It’s got a sweet lyric video to match:
The other two tracks are gems too: the uptempo “Ring Road” is gloomy electropop worthy of the dancefloor, and the release is rounded out by a great cover of Sinead O’Connor’s “Jump in the River.” All in all, a very solid debut, and we’ll be anxiously watching for his next release.
You can pick up Three Songs from Bandcamp on a PWYW basis.
Grimes’s last single “Go” proved divisive among fans and critics, being a departure from her past work, which had always maintained an underground feel despite her exploding global popularity. What would come next? A return to the old ways, or a continued venture into a mainstreaming of her sound? Grimes Nation and its observers debated, prognosticated, and pontificated. Today, we are treated to a glimpse of an answer, in the form of brand new single “REALiTi,” a laid-back grooving electropop track that distinctly feels like her underground tendencies are back in full force. But, then again, she says that the song is virtually of demo-quality, as she lost the original Ableton session and it’s a “doctored” MP3.
Although it might not really provide an indication of what her eventual next record will sound like, “REALiTI” is still an incredible piece of work, definitely not suffering for loss of fidelity, and is the best single we’ve heard from her in ages. The video, which she directed herself, is a love letter to her fans in East Asia and her experiences while touring there. Onwards, Grimes, to wherever your heart may lead you.
Erstwhile Silent Shout contributor and all-around wundermusiker Tom Avis (aka Farragoes) has a brand new project, and unsurprisingly it’s something that’s right up our alley. This time teaming up with Jesse Laderoute of Blonde Elvis and Dan Bedard of White Suede, Big JRs make jangly-guitar, slightly-electronic, indie pop, and their debut single “An Alford Plea” features reverbed-out vocals and a wonderful repeating guitar hook. They’re definitely onto something.
We were already giddy with anticipation about the new Doldrums record. Remember “Hotfoot”? Well that excellent first track was no fluke, because sweet merciful crap does the latest single go even deeper into pure dancefloor material. With heavily treated vocals and a huge 4/4 beat, this is Doldrums for the club. We absolutely love this meeting of worlds between his experimental juxtapositions and electro-house simplicity. We’ll be hitting repeat on this all weekend.
Countdown’s on. Doldrums’ second album The Air Conditioned Nightmare is out April 7.