Spotlighting some artists that’re <9000 on Spotify
My album of the year for 2017, Pet Library’s Pity Party might be the most honest thing you’ll ever hear. With lyrics like “sharing a pack of cigarettes and a lighter that didn’t work, all I wanted was to kiss you, I thought about it so much it made my head hurt,” perhaps they sound corny on paper. However the delivery, the urgency, and the tinge of dustiness puts you on the sidewalk and looking for the kiss. This is an album for a moment in time: you’re young, vibrant, and just melancholic enough to ruin everything.
Keeping on the trend of AOTYs, Fox Wound’s In Passing, You’re Too Faded was nearly my 2016 pick. Although a bit more serious than Pet Library, Fox Wound carry the same sort of urgency. Their sound may be a bit more spaced and mature, but fiery still. We’ll call them emo, we’ll call them post-something, but I’ll call them contemplative for now. Fox Wound just released a new album, so it’s a great time to support! And they’ve got an instrumental called “So Which One Is Jim” – I’ll take anything that references The Office.
Formerly known as Kamikaze Girls, this duo combines bitter punk philosophies with an unflinching message. Their shouted vocals and fuzzed-out tones are hardly crust-core. The standout track, “Teenage Feelings,” off their debut might be the only song you’ll need to hear. If I’ve got to put a label on their sound: think an angry Alvvays with more distortion. I’ve been to Tall and Small, I’ve seen some playlists, I know you all like Alvvays. I know you’ll love Cultdreams.
Coast to Coast
This one’s a one-song challenge. It hasn’t been in my favour, but opinions for Coast to Coast’s song “Post Graduation” have been polarizing. 95% of the argument comes down to the singer’s voice. I love it. I’ve also heard it sounds like Patrick Star. Most of Coast to Coast’s material deals with the few months after undergrad. For some of you this may seem a bit too real. For some of you this might seem far away. For now, listen to “Post Graduation” and let me know how you dig it. They’re my favourite upcoming band, maybe they’ll be yours too.
Vocals aren’t the question with Palm Reader, not one bit. And while they may be the heaviest suggestion on this list, they’re perhaps the most likely to explode. There’s a rumbling in the UK underground “metal” scenes. Some band just released a sophomore album that somehow made quite a few end-of-year lists for quite a few publications. Odd, innit?
Braille lives up to every word of hype. Heavy as an anvil, feral as my ex’s stupid cat, but melodic and fragile as Billie Holiday on a smoked-up stage, you’ll feel Braille.
Total shift of pace now. Fluxion works with a mixture of UK dub and ambience. In the least clear way possible, his work sounds like dangerous study music. Each album, each track, all carry a sense of urban tension. The hazy fence pictured on his debut album artwork couldn’t be more perfect. Mechanical factory-beats muffle over distant blips and blorps. And there’s a synth somewhere inside – hidden, but still heard. Try Ripple Effect to start, it may be less abrasive. But close your eyes whenever you listen. Who’d think meditation was so industrial?
Sure, they’ve released a new album. Sure, they’re about to release yet another one. But I want to drive you towards one of the greatest EPs in the last few years. 2016’s Stranger Culture might be the perfect party. “Pushing Teeth” can’t get any more fun. Every single line was meant to be sung along to. Further, I’m impressed with the way their vocalist’s delivery sounds like a strut. Of course, this doesn’t make much sense until you hear it. In the same manner that Morrissey’s voice matched his rose-held floating-walk, Modern Rituals has a singer who’s cooler than you no matter how he looks. With a post-punk mentality and a partied post-hardcore sound, Stranger Culture will always be a great 24 minutes