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.
What a pretty and happy-inducing cover of Lykki Li, coming our way from Montreal’s Saxsyndrum! Just so pretty! The original song, which recently had a slight resurgence by being featured in an episode of House of Cards, lends itself perfectly to Sea Oleena’s soft and delicate voice. Meanwhile, the members of Saxsyndrum restrain themselves from the artpop dance party we’ve come to expect from the band, letting the innate gentleness of the song speak for itself. It doesn’t happen often, but we love it when bands find their softer side.
We’re really excited about SlowPitchSound‘s “scifi-turntablism”! The Toronto-based artist uses a turntable as an instrument, looping and adding effects to create intricate instrumental compositions. (We also, naturally, love scifi references!) “LoFiSci” punctuates melancholy extended notes with clicks and taps, disembodied voices and something that could be a BopIt twist sound. The end result is haunting and quite a bit original.
Dream Safari is an aptly-named project. The Philadelphia-based musician creates fantastical journeys in a genre he calls “jungle pop”, replete with colourful synth sounds and full production. But instead of lions and zebras, this is the kind of safari that will show you the galaxy’s different alien species, before sending you home humming a catchy chorus melody. We know what we’re doing on our next vacation.
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.
Aw! What nice little lo-fi pop ditty from Montreal’s Betty & Veronica: perfect for the first day of spring (happy spring, everybody!!). Jangly guitar, a drum machine seemingly set to the salsa setting, and a glee-inducing synth line that you can’t help but smile at.
Mystery Date is the first track off Perish The Thought, Betty & Veronica’s debut album, which is filled with down-right ADORABLE tracks like this. The record includes songs like “Flowers Are Dumb,” “Martyr in a Cardigan,” and the Silent Shout-approved “Ghost Rider,” and will be on repeat in anticipation for tulips and leaves.
Legendary Hamilton-based slacker-poet B.A. Johnston has just released his tenth album, Shit Sucks, and on it – hark! – a straight-up electropop tune! The endlessly listenable “What A Wonderfully Mediocre Day” features all the mainstays of a classic Johnston composition – compact song structure, descriptions of life’s simple lazy pleasures, deeply Canadian references – and one of the catchiest choruses in recent memory.
This song is pop perfection that pays proper respect to a perfectly executed lazy day featuring precious couchtime, chips & dip, garlic bread, and Star Trek TNG. Johnston wisely tells us that we can elevate the most mediocre day into the extraordinary by upholding some basic standards and being relentless yet discerning in our pursuit of happiness. Don’t skimp on that dip! No Q episodes! If done right, there is decidedly no place like home: “If I had a holodeck, make it look like my living room, watch Next Gen all day”.
Listen to that bleepy hook! We think he should go electro more often. Shit Sucks is available now from Bandcamp.
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!
Through the minimalism expressed by a reverb soaked drum machine coupled with a singular arpeggiating synth, Marie Davidson delivers us her latest franco-darkwave inspired spoken word piece “Excès De Vitesse”. Sombre, strobing and exquisitely hypnotic – the creation is the second to be unveiled from her upcoming sophomore release with Austin’s Holodeck Records.
The travelogue inspired LP Un Autre Voyage will feature six original songs and is set to be released April 14th. Pre-order your copy now!