Hi! Hello! Here we are with some bite sized goodies and a taste of a some new things that we dug that came out in the last week (ish), quick fire responses to some great new music we think you should check out. This week Chantal [CW], Kate B [KB] Kate H [KH] weighed in on some killer songs and have the scoop on plenty of new tunes, give ’em a listen!
Anklebiter– Pearl. This song roars right out of the gate, all cylinders firing .05 seconds in, LET’S FUCKIN GO! The North East straight edge band declares on their Bandcamp “Fast, loud hardcore will never get old” and I’m inclined to 1000% agree. A minute and a half of warp speed beats, accentuated with solid as a rock breakdowns, this is the first song from their upcoming seven song EP To Live and Withstand which the band says “is full of rageful recollections of life, detailed with harsh imagery and expressed with bursts of spite. Anklebiter continues to resist, calloused, growing and withstanding.” Look for the release in full on 5/26. [KH]
Beach Fossils– Run To The Moon. On this dreamy, laid back track, Dustin Payseur sings about becoming a parent and moving from being terrified to joyful at the prospect, “having absolute freedom, the fear of losing it, but then tapping into myself in a way that felt more real.” That happiness is reflected in their dreamy, pastoral music video for the single. The band says their upcoming album Bunny is their most vulnerable and personal to date; it releases 6/2 on Bayonet. [CW]
Buggin– Not Yours. The Chicago hardcore band has a new album coming, Concrete Cowboys, which will be released on June 2nd via Flatspot. This song takes a direct punch at the tokenization in the hardcore scene of all those who are not cis men, with the lyrics “Call us female fronted, you can eat my fist” really nailing the point home. Front person Bryanna Bennett shares that this song is:
“a more personal one about dealing with the tokenization of being seen as a girl in hardcore. I’m non-binary, and I hate being thrown in “female fronted” categories. We just want to rock without people making it weird or only liking us for that reason.”
The song is full of hard hitting riffs and a brutal breakdown that takes the song home in its final minute. They will soon tour the UK and Europe and will play The Tribes of Da Moon at Bowery Ballroom in August along with Bleed The Pigs, Knife Wound, Rebelmatic, Soul Glo, Zulu and many more. [KH]
The Clientele– Blue Over Blue. For their newest album, The Clientele wanted to incorporate musical elements that have inspired them, but not really found their way into previous records, such as contemporary classical or post-pop jazz. “Blue Over Blue” finds them using percussive samples and varying time signatures, but still retains the easy-going, lush sound they have perfected. Pop sensibilities blend with unexpected drumbeats throughout the “playing hide and seek” bridge, while Alasdair MacLean sings a lovely melody about what’s actually a rather frightening experience: getting lost in the woods with his young son. I Am Not There Anymore will be out 7/28 on Merge. [CW]
Flasyd– Shit Goes. You better get ready to hold on for dear life because Flasyd, the noisy garage punk band that describes themselves as “always fast, hardly accurate,” (a documentary of the same name was released about the band in 2021) is back after breaking up a year and a half ago declaring “these bitches are back!” And back they are with a fucking vengeance, a yell of “FUCK YOU RANDY!” to start things off lets you know right away this song ain’t holding a thing back. A scuzzy bassline kicks in, accented by acrid guitars on the upbeat, then it’s off to the races; a chaotic frenzied dash to the finish line two and a half minutes later will find you gasping for breath as you skid to a halt and quickly reach a shaky hand up to hit play, starting the song all over again. The band says this song is “just the first in a whole lot of shit that is to come,” and I’m more ready to be dragged along on whatever wild ride Flasyd has in store for us. [KH]
Girl and Girl– All I See. The Australian garage band just signed with the iconic Sub Pop and most pleasing to me, also features the fun combo of vocalist Kai James and his Aunty Liss on drums, with the quartet rounded out by longtime friends Jayden Williams on guitar and Fraser Bell on bass. That being said, after hearing this fun romp of a song, I may or may not have immediately texted my 18 year old nephew to share it and say “we should jam sometime” (he plays bass and sings, I play drums…the possibility is there!) Jangly with a lithe post punk rhythmic sensibility, James shares:
“Lyrics came last for ‘All I See,’ about 3 years after the track, and when I finally sat down and wrote them, I was pretty anxious about whether I had them right or not. A new Mylie Cyrus track played on the radio that afternoon, she too, was singing about houses burning down, and I took that as confirmation. So I thanked Mylie Cyrus and her great new track ‘Flowers’ and never looked back.”
The band is currently working on their full length debut album and will soon tour in the UK and Europe. Here’s hoping they hit the US soon too so one potential aunt and nephew musical duo can head out to support their kindred spirits from Down Under. [KH]
Greg Mendez– Best Behavior/Hoping You’re Doing Okay. Contemplative acoustic guitar with dreamy quiet vocals soften the sharp pain in Greg Mendez’s lyrics. In “Best Behavior,” he struggles with feeling hurt as he and a friend grow apart: “And it’s true, sometimes I’m wrong but I’m on my best behavior, do you like it?” The easy swing of “Hoping You’re Doing Okay” shuffles along cheerfully while the lyrics tell a story of addiction and living on the streets: “Couldn’t feel, couldn’t convince myself I was real cause it’s not the way that you are it’s what they wanna see, Oh Lord.” These are the last two singles released in advance of Mendez’s most recent eponymous album, coming out on May 5. [KB]
JOHN– Trauma Mosaic. I’ve loved this London based band for a few years now after being introduced to them by our webmistress, Jenifun, who lives in the UK and gets to see all the good bands there regularly. I have also unfortunately managed to miss JOHN on every trip I’ve made to the UK since first hearing them (and trust me, I’ve tried to make it line up when planning trips), but lucky for me and connoisseurs of fine punk rock songs in 14 select cities in the US (and one in Canada), the band will be making their maiden voyage to the hellfire shores of ‘Murica this October. Read more about it and their new single “Trauma Mosaic” here and check them out on FTA’s favorite two piece band list here. Tickets for all dates are currently on sale via their website; they will wrap up the final date of the tour on 10/26 at Saint Vitus. [KH]
Laura Wolf– Paper and Plastic. Ethereal synth and fluttering cello riffs undulate under Laura Wolf’s lilting vocals, the lyrics full of longing: “Sadie, come back to me.” Soft intoxicating alt-pop with an early Bjork vibe from the Brooklyn-based producer, cellist, and singer. The inspiration for the track came from Wolf’s family:
“This song was inspired by my conversations with my late maternal grandmother, where her creative understanding of time, place and identity was nevertheless penetrated by the underlying sentiment of her memory…I repitched and manipulated an 808 bass drum sample to become my core synth for the song and decorated the fabric of the arrangement with manipulated, resampled, and chopped fragments of lead vocal and cello from throughout the album.”
The full album, Shelf Life, will be released on Whatever’s Clever Records on June 2. [KB]
Libby Quinn– Bob. The first single since 2021 from the eclectic five-piece from Long Island, “Bob” immerses you in the band’s skillful chaos which transcends genres. In just under four minutes, the song has alarming discordant guitars, heavily grooving bass lines, charismatic spoken lyrics and then a descent into a free-form chaotic beauty that’s a mix of free jazz and prog, with a Coltrane-esque saxophone coasting over it all before the song falls back into a spiral of driving guitars and screams at its conclusion. [KB]
Palehound– The Clutch. Queer artist El Kempner aka Palehound has announced a brand new album, Eye On The Bat (July 14, Polyvinyl) and shared the first single “The Clutch,” an infectious mid-tempo rocker which also shows off their sweet guitar chops quite nicely with copious shreds in the middle of the song. Slinky bass from Larz Brogan is the glue that holds the rocking jam together, keeping things steady and driving alongside the drums.
About the song Kempner shares:
“‘The Clutch’ is the very first song I wrote for this album, back in 2020 right when lockdown started. I had been on a tour that was sliced in half by the onset of the pandemic and we had to apocalypse road trip back to New York across the country from Oregon, where our next show had been scheduled for. While that was happening, I was also having a triggering romantic experience with somebody I didn’t know too well, and by the time I got home my whole body seemed to be spinning in turmoil. Writing and producing this song grounded me and helped me process a new future and self that I hadn’t anticipated.”
This is the first new Palehound album since 2019’s Black Friday, and also follows Kempner’s 2021 collaboration with Jay Som’s Melina Duterte, Bachelor, which released the album Doomin’ Sun. [KH]
PJ Harvey– A Child’s Question, August. The incomparable Polly Jean Harvey has released the first single off her upcoming tenth album, I, Inside the Old Year Dying (July 7 Partisan). “A Child’s Question, August,” is haunting, almost dirge-like, like a traditional English folk song with a goth/post-punk filter, but ever-so-gentle. Harvey’s voice (which can do anything) drifts high and ghost-like in the verses, and then drops to a fuller more throaty tone during the choruses (doubled by deeper vocals from Ben Whishaw). Together they intone: “What says dunnick, drush, or dove? ‘Love Me Tender’? Tender love.” The song has an equally hypnotizing video by photographer Steve Gullick and PJ Harvey has me completely spellbound. [KB]
RVG– Midnight Sun. The latest single from this Melbourne band is fast without being frantic, has classic riffage without being classic rock, and generally feels like being on the edge of something, as Romy Vager sings “yeah I know / that talking to you doesn’t work anymore / but if you change your mind / I will be waiting for you to come home.” Their third album Brain Worms will be released on 6/2 on Fire Records. [CW]
Sorry Mom– Shaving My Legs. The latest from the snotty New York based femme queer punk band who “like[s] to hang out and play music and Mario kart,” it feels like a rough hewn throwback to rapid fire 90s skate punk, minus the sweaty boys and dick jokes. This song, along with their absolute instant classic banger, “I Fucked Your Mom,” are the kind of in your face shit made by other queers/non men that I wish I’d had when I was subjected to those same sweaty 90s boys in real time and the punk rock songs of that era that catered pretty much only to that demographic but the rest of us had to accept too if we wanted aggressive rock music.
Aside from a few notable exceptions (Bikini Kill, L7, Lunachicks, Babes In Toyland…ya know the rest), bands that really spoke to me on this level were still two decades off into my future. But thankfully the songs and the bands are here now; Sorry Mom is exactly the kind of band I didn’t get to have back then and really savor now so hey, better late than never! Their debut album babyface is due out on 5/12 and yeah, you can say I’m pretty stoked for it. The band will embark on a short tour after its release which will hit Saint Vitus on 5/20. [KH]
Sorority Grrrls– American Sicko. The Newcastle, England based feminist punk band recently released their debut single, “Dead Babies On The Floor” (read our thoughts) and now have followed it up with the b-side “American Sicko” which continues in the same 90s inspired vein that the first single did. (I swear I didn’t plan for this to appear back to back with the Sorry Mom song, but they are indeed very fitting companions on a list of songs.) I’m very much hoping I can catch this band play live on my next trip to the UK later this year. [KH]
Winter Wolf– Blue Lights. This song is part of the stand out EP Unwell (which was one of my favorites of 2022) and Winter Wolf are some of the most exciting performers in the NYC punk underground today, hands down one of the best bands you’ll see live. Huge bass and drums drive the song, accompanied with perfectly matched dual vocals from Tony $ixx, providing the high falsetto, and bassist/vocalist Jey Winters serving up the full low end with intense growls to match his killer riffs. A sharp condemnation to cops and police violence, they mince no words when they yell FUCK YOUR BLUE LIGHTS! They’ve now released a music video to accompany the song and share:
Our music video “Blue Lights” is about the everyday reality of Black people which includes our struggles in dealing with the police. All throughout the video, we show hope and strength thereby encouraging people to stay unified in their power while continuing to see another tomorrow. You can see from the clips of our performances the smiles of the crowd still persevering and finding joy during these troubling times. This video is a call for solidarity for what we’ve all gone through and a love letter to the New York underground scene.
Keep up with what the band is doing via Instagram and make sure you are heading to a show to catch their impeccable live performance. Unwell is available on all major streaming platforms. [KH]