Single & Lovin' It Vol. 33
By Mixtape Mandi
LUKE TEMPLE - "BIRDS OF LATE DECEMBER"
Luke Temple, the creative mind behind Here We Go Magic, will release his stunning new folk album, A Hand Through The Cellar Door, on November 11th via Secretly Canadian. Three years since the release of Temple’s last solo album, Good Mood Fool, A Hand Through the Cellar Door is, in many ways, his most straightforward collection of song-storytelling tunes to date. Throughout, he creates small, confident stories with a massive scope. There are tales of dysfunctional, broken homes and of dysfunctional, broken people. Debut single, “Birds of Late December,” with its fluttering, nimble finger-picking, paints an exacting but impressionistic portrait of divorce through the eyes of an exceptionally wistful child. But this being Temple, nothing is really ever so straightforward. The arrangements, kept to a minimal set-up, expand and contract in unexpected ways. Temple writes with the eye of a painter like Eric Fischl. Whereas Fischl will put a subtle provocative image in the margins of a piece to create a feeling of imbalance, Temple will add a guitar hiccup or a just-behind-the-beat string section to create a sensation of everything being slightly off. And in that imbalance, both artists show us grace. While the tales Temple weaves are bleak, the aura of hope never quite fades from the picture. He turns the tragedies of human folly into a celebration of our eccentricities.
KEVIN MORBY - "TINY FIRES"
Kevin Morby shared "Tiny Fires," a non-album track that comes from the same time period as his recent critically acclaimed album Singing Saw from Dead Oceans. "Tiny Fires" was recorded and mixed by Drew Fischer in Los Angeles shortly after the completion of Singing Saw. What's special about this live band recording is that it features members of Morby's current live band, including Meg Duffy on slide guitar and bass, and Justin Sullivan on drums. "Tiny Fires" was also written right after the completion of Singing Saw, so, as Morby says, "it is from that same brain." Released as a digital 7", "Tiny Fires" is a solo acoustic demo version of the song, which was written and recorded in Kevin's bedroom in Mt. Washington, Los Angeles.
WOLF PEOPLE - "NINTH NIGHT"
Wolf People’s new album, Ruins, is set for release on November 11th via Jagjaguwar. Its overriding theme is that of nature reclaiming the land. The transcendence of life over politics, plants over people. It asks: where are we going and what comes next? If culture is history’s narration, then Wolf People are custodians and conduits; electrified sages, if you will. Through them runs a timeline of a nation rising from bloody glory to existentialist confusion. Yet within Ruins lies a spirit of hope too, it is a reminder that society is no match for the mighty power of music and nature working in perfect symbiosis. Wolf People are time travelers, their tools mythology, history, big riffs, bigger beats, electricity. Recorded in Devon, Isle Of Wight and London, Ruins is their most direct and instinctive work yet, simultaneously reaching back into a fecund past to tell us who we are today, while harnessing the power of modern technology and ideas to ponder unknown futures. The lead single from Ruins is “Ninth Night.” The lyrics are an incantation once whispered by 18th century burglars and vagabonds while toting the famed Hand of Glory – the stolen hand of a hanged man, dipped in wax (or alternatively a candle made from human fat). Once lit it was believed to lull victims into a deep sleep. “Let those who rest more deeply sleep,” sings frontman Jack Sharp. “Let those awake their vigils keep / Oh hand of glory shed thy light / Direct us to our spoils tonight...”
SUBURBAN LIVING - "LOVELY TIMES"
Philadelphia's Suburban Living premiered a second new song, "Lovely Times," is off the band's forthcoming sophomore album Almost Paradise, which will be released on October 7th via 6131 Records. Recorded by Jeff Zeigler (The War On Drugs, Kurt Vile, Nothing), Almost Paradise is a bold and sweeping album that expands upon the bedroom dream-pop of Suburban Living's 2015 eponymous debut. Whereas the band began as a solo project of singer-guitarist Wesley Bunch writing, playing, and recording everything on his own, it now includes drummer Michael Cammarata, bassist Peter Pantina, and guitarist Chris Radwanski in collaboration to fill out the sound. The album was written across 2015; a year after Bunch moved to Philadelphia from Virginia Beach and found himself working through both a heartbreak and the sense of disjointedness that comes with relocation. The resultant Almost Paradise is a coming-of-age breakup album that looks at the loss of love and friends, and the unmoored feeling that comes with change and finding a new sense of home.
TRAILS AND WAYS - "GET LOUD"
Trails and Ways premiered their new song "Get Loud," the third track released off the band's sophomore album Own It, which will be released on October 7th. As the core duo of singer-guitarist Keith Brower Brown and drummer Ian Quirk, the band is joined by Alycia Lang and Miriam Speyer live. The product of a wrenching year following Trails and Ways' debut album Pathology (Barsuk 2015), Own It chronicles an attempt at self-transformation through lush, hook-laden songs. At the end of seven months of touring, two longtime bandmates decided to leave, while Brower Brown's long-term relationship hit its breaking point. The upheaval knocked him flat, and pushed him towards a tough evaluation of his own flaws and how they could have contributed to these collapses. While backpacking across the Sierra Nevada, traveling Baja California and Louisiana, he confronted deep-set selfishness and self-protective vanity in the hope of making something beautiful out of the mess. The result is Own It, an album that roars back with anti-capitalist wit in songs that range from dreamy Bossa Nova pulse to rebellious post-punk strut. In the past, Trails and Ways songs kept their politics wistful and enigmatic; the new album strides out of those confines, unafraid to offend, and commits to anti-capitalism with gleeful abandon. With a defiant spirit of personal and political openness, Brower Brown wrote Own It in opposition to the way he felt capitalism tried to turn him defensive, vain, and selfish. With powerful foils of heaviness vs. lightness, playful humor vs. raw emotions and serious polemic, the new songs find an exuberant, cathartic power in owning up to your flaws, cutting loose your creative independence, and finding your own way out.
NICK WATERHOUSE - "KATCHI"
On September 30th, Nick Waterhouse will return with his third full-length studio album, Never Twice. Waterhouse unveiled the track "Katchi" off of the upcoming album, which features his pal Leon Bridges and riffs on Bridges' family name for a massage - "Katchi." "Leon and I were in Fort Worth hanging out at a friend's place getting massages. He was laying on the table while I strummed the chords, bare chested, he shouted out ‘she give me KATCHI!’...His mother's old Louisiana Indian term for 'loving touch'. We rode it out and next thing we know we had a straight cruiser," Waterhouse explained. Never Twice will be released via Innovative Leisure digitally, on CD and 180 gram vinyl. With Never Twice, Waterhouse returned to his original collaborator, producer Michael McHugh (Black Lips, Ty Segall, Allah-Las), who was a local legend in the oft-underrated Orange County music scene that Waterhouse grew up in. McHugh was the first person to ever put Waterhouse on tape and in an effort to re-capture the vibrancy of the Huntington Beach scene of his youth he invited McHugh up to his current home of San Francisco to work the boards once again. Once he had McHugh on board, Waterhouse began cold-calling his favorite players, all of whom miraculously said yes. Jazz musician Bob Kenmotsu's contributed flute, Tom Waits and Elvis Costello collaborator Ralph Carney on saxophone, Dr. Lonnie Smith protégé Will Blades on organ and a virtual who’s who of music legends on horns, bass and guitar. The result is an exuberant and impeccably recorded album of songs, showcasing Waterhouse's prowess as a musician and a band-leader.
KINKY LOVE - "WOMEN WITHOUT"
Kinky Love have shared their new track "Women Without," in which singer Xoe Wise explains: "There is a lot of vocal sampling happening in music these days, so we wanted to do our own take on that sort of thing. Our mix engineer Roland Lim took our raw ideas on that and helped massage them into something that really grooved with the track. ‘Women Without’ on the whole was written with more improvisation than a lot of our earlier stuff." A rare Nancy Sinatra song first inspired the band’s name, but three years later and Chicago trio Kinky Love is better known for the quick gratification of their ethereal electronic sound. Breathy new single "TV Girl" further explores the innate chemistry of the group, with a layered gloss that combines frontwoman Wise's pop lust with Dan Zima's mastery of '80s programming and Alan Shinkunas' structured rock bent. The release follows an active year for the band, issuing their first double-side 7" as a trio in 2015.
BRAVESTATION - "13TH FLOOR"
For most, the 13th Floor doesn’t exist. Shrouded in superstition, it’s a level that can’t be reached. Looking to elevate their new wave pop sound, Bravestation (brothers Devin and Derek Wilson along with childhood friend Jeremy Rossetti) channeled their sense of adventure to create the upbeat and glamorous new single "13th Floor" “Everyone wants to experience something new and go somewhere they’ve never been. '13th Floor’ is us exploring that desire and trying to find our own surreal and exciting space.” In celebration of the track and upcoming collection, Bravestation will be performing select dates across Canada. The band was formed in the City of the 1000 Islands and is now based in Toronto. Their name is merged from the titles of Aldous Huxley’s dystopian novel Brave New World and Robert J. Hasting’s inspirational essay The Station. With influences ranging from ‘80s new wave to disco and post-punk, the band channels sounds from the past and visions of the future to create their own version of pop.
BROS - "TELL ME"
Dine Alone Records is excited to announce the debut album Vol. 1 from BROS will be released October 14th. BROS is the new project from Ewan and Shamus Currie, front man and keyboardist, respectively, for platinum-selling Canadian band The Sheepdogs. Lead single "Tell Me" premiered via American Songwriter, who describe the song as a "funky, sultry, '70s-style track." Although they are indeed brothers, the name BROS was chosen with tongue firmly planted in cheek, a reflection of the 10-song self-titled debut album daringly expanding their sonic range in unexpected and playful ways. And although Ewan has amassed several impressive achievements and awards with The Sheepdogs including a #1 LP on the Canadian Top 200 SoundScan Chart, four JUNO wins, Gold and Platinum certifications (for The Sheepdogs and Learn and Burn), it always comes back to the music. BROS isn't Sheepdogs-style rock. Instead, the sound, encapsulated in the album's first single "Tell Me," combines vintage funk and power pop in the spirit of what Sly & The Family Stone once called a whole new thing. The origin of BROS goes back to the winter of 2014, just after Ewan and Shamus relocated to Toronto from Saskatoon, and prior to The Sheepdogs recording their most recent album, Future Nostalgia. Finding themselves with some downtime, the pair started working on some experimental demos that drew from influences ranging from Badfinger to Latin music legends such as Gilberto Gil and Os Mutantes. Once enough material was ready, the scene shifted to Thomas D'Arcy's Toronto studio, Taurus Recording, where the necessary ingredients were added to the musical gumbo on BROS. The end result is an album that's simultaneously comforting in its familiarity, and astonishing in its inventiveness. More information will be announced soon including tour dates.
FUJIYA AND MIYAGI - "OUTSTRIPPING"
Fujiya and Miyagi's newest single “Outstripping” comes off their upcoming EP 2. For a band acutely aware of our own futile existence and gradual demise on this planet, Fujiya & Miyagi sure know how to take that desolation and dance to it. Their second EP, from a series of three, is littered with thematic ruminations on skepticism, privilege, repetition, getting older, human beings’ place and significance in the world, and even the works of JG Ballard. Despite a mild undercurrent of bleakness and higher questioning, this EP finds the group in a very live band mode and, as ever, traversing the lines between disco and rock over the course of four songs. This EP is a break in the otherwise optimistic views of the trio of releases singer David Best says, “All the other songs on both of the EPs so far are generally based from a positive view point. However, it's inevitable that some frustrations and resentment will seep out somewhere.” Best goes on to explain that “We are living in an era where the fragility of life is more apparent than ever.” The tracks deals with advances in technology making people idle and undeserving, “We waste our time watching cookery [programs on television] whilst stuffing our face with confectionary that our generation has convinced itself it deserves by doing the most simple of everyday tasks. We increasingly behave more and more like a dog giving itself a biscuit for the simple art of shitting.”