The Alt Weekly Roundup (12/5)

Posted: by The Editor

The Alternative Weekly Roundup is a column where our staff plugs a variety of new releases in a concise, streamlined format. Albums, singles, videos, and live sets. Check back each Monday to see what we were jamming the week prior.

Old Neon – Jumpstart

Energetic and emotive, Old Neon’s Jumpstart is an instantly gripping EP. The group uses slick guitar lines and fat drum fills to adorn the lyrics that tend to lean towards the heavier side. Each track takes a different approach launching off, with arpeggios on a clean guitar on “Jumpstart” and a drum and bass kicking off “NATALIE” before the tune explodes into a sugary sweet melody, while “Barely Alive” kicks right into the somber scene. Starting with just vocals and a distorted guitar, closer “Highlights” finds Old Neon at their strongest here and works as a clever, infectious capper to the EP.

Aaron Eisenreich | @slobboyreject

Gordon M. Phillips – “Splintered”

After surprise dropping a solo LP called Seasonal a couple months ago, Downhaul’s Gordon M. Phillips is back with a new track called “Splintered.” Where that showed Phillips foraying into gentle folk, “Splintered” is closer to the riffy alt rock of Downhaul’s latest, but filtered through the psychedelia of Alex G, maybe.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Godcaster – “Diamond’s Shining Face”

Godcaster’s debut came only a few years ago with their first single “She’s a Gun,” a Bowie inspired bass and synth track that suggested them to be the next best glam rock revival band. However, their newest single “Diamond’s Shining Face,” is the polar opposite of danceable. It’s murky and slow, relying mainly on a trudging drum and bass groove to prop up dissonant vocals and guitar squeals before erupting into the harrowing refrain, where singer Judson Kolk shreds his throat screaming into oblivion. It’s dangerous but cunning in its attack, like a snake quietly slithering its way toward your calf before sinking its teeth in.

Nate Cross @BigNafey

Swim Camp – “Pillow”

On “Pillow,” Swim Camp’s hazy slowcore takes on an almost dream pop blurriness. Dirgelike guitars fold in on themselves and vocals swirl and sway somewhere underneath it all. Immediately it’s one of the project’s most captivating singles.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Buddie – Transplant

Buddie make the most of the range of dynamics and sounds they’re working with on Transplant, an EP that spans from light acoustic picking to dirty electric guitars that drown the tunes during their cascading codas. The vocals and melodies have a breezy feel to them, especially in the lighter moments like the first half of “Northern Skies,” a song that grows trippier as it goes. The spectrum the group is working in is on full display on closer “Indecision,” both the heaviest and most pulled-back tune here, with the most earworm-worthy chorus. The EP clocks in at 15 minutes, but feels longer in the best way possible, with the band packing the songs with intricate details that you pick up more with each listen.

Aaron Eisenreich | @slobboyreject

Park National – I’m Here and This Is Real

Off the heels of recent singles “Set My Bed on Fire” and “Dirty Shoes” comes Park National’s new EP I’m Here and This Is Real. Those songs largely do well to summarize the EP, a punchy 20 minutes of tight pop rock hooks and crunchy riffs.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

crushed – “waterlily”

crushed are shining bright on their debut single “waterlily” from their upcoming EP, extra life. The track romanticizes the best of ’90s pop music with laid back, vaporwave-style drum programming and chilly synthesizers. All that combined with vocalist Bre Morell’s soaring melodies, and you get warm and gooey nostalgia for a time when MTV still played music videos.

Nate Cross @BigNafey

Saline – Demo ’22

It’s easy to hear where Saline’s hearts lie (just look at that cover!). Like recent Funeral Homes or any number of bands on Sunday Drive, Saline idolizes the shoegaze bands of yesteryear. Their demo is a bit bouncier, more lighthearted than most other takes on the sound, though, bursting with hooks and heart under all the fuzz and the buzz.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Midnight Lights – “It’s Not Me, It’s You”

Midnight Lights’ “It’s Not Me, It’s You” is a pop-punk bash, nailing so many of the genre’s best signifiers. There are chunky palm-muted guitars, a bouncy main riff, snarky lyrics, and a ripping guitar solo, all wrapped up in a tight catchy three minutes. The tune forms a nice pair with the band’s recent, more ’80s-inspired single “Wake Up.”

Aaron Eisenreich | @slobboyreject

Driftless – Perfect Blue

Perfect Blue marks a significant break from Driftless’ previous records. The three-piece has shifted from ever-building, purely instrumental post-rock to a sleepier, more autumnal brand, and this time they’ve added vocals to the mix. The three songs on Perfect Blue each dwarf even the longest tracks on their first two albums, and they take much, much longer to open themselves up. It makes for a jarring listen coming off post-rock opus The Greatest Need–but as these songs reveal themselves Perfect Blue proves an extremely rewarding listen. One part Moving Mountains, one part Sondersongs, it might not be as immediate as their other records, but it very well could be even better.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

The Alternative’s ‘New Music Friday’ playlist

Each week our editor Lindsy Carrasquillo compiles a playlist of songs our staff has been jamming. We’ll post it on Fridays on Twitter and then include it in each edition of the ‘Weekly Roundup’ to make sure you don’t miss all of the great music we’re recommending.

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