The Alt Weekly Roundup (3/6)

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.

Coral Grief – Daydrops 

There’s a song on Coral Grief’s new EP called “Wow Signal.” Named after an extraterrestrial radio signal captured by a radio telescope in the ‘70s, it’s a nice indication of what to expect, sonically, from Daydrops. It’s spacious and otherworldly, beautiful in an alien sort of way—but never enough to be off-putting or unsettling. It’s like a photo of the earth from space: a portrait of space and openness, but comforting in its expansiveness.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Dim Wizard – “Ride the Vibe”

Dim Wizard, the solo project of Bad Moves’ David Combs, has recruited a certified dream team of Jeff Rosenstock, Steve Ciolek of the Sidekicks, and Sarah Tudzin of Illuminati Hotties for his latest piece of sunny power pop (Dazy frontman James Goodson illustrated the cover art). The subject material is well-trodden territory for Combs–burnout, disillusionment, feeling trapped by the daily grind–and it’s never sounded so fun. Between the fuzzed-out production, hazy guitar riffs, and restless, bat-out-of-hell lyricism, it’ll be the perfect jam to spin all summer long.  

Grace Robins-Somerville | @grace_roso

Provide – For Me

A pandemonium of guitar riffs, horn lines, trippy keys, and cozy vocal melodies, Provide’s For Me is a wonderful hurricane of a record. Evan Bernard’s pop sensibilities are on full display, even as the guitars seem almost aggressively murky next to the sweet, poppy vocal melodies. The keys might be the star here though, floating above everything in the mix and pushing the pace on tracks like the speedy “Weak”—a tune beautifully contrasted with the slower groove of “Bummer” following it. With the undeniably huge chorus of “Dejected,” the ‘80s ballad guitar solo of “My Star,” and the ‘90s alt meets hyperpop joy of closer “Ahego,” no one could accuse For Me of being frontloaded. The tracks here are so unique and varied, For Me is definitely a record that rewards you the more times you hit repeat.

Aaron Eisenreich | @slobboyreject

crushed – “milksugar”

LA duo crushed recently delivered the ultimate soundtrack to help you romanticize your life with this track playing in the background. One of three singles released from their newest EP extra life, it’s a moody, contemplative, intricately layered dream pop serenade that tugs at your faintest memory of late ’90s / early 2000s romantic dramas and reminds you of the tender beauty of falling in love.

Loan Pham | @senseofexile

Charmer – Seney Stretch

Seney Stretch is a surprise in two senses: one, years of silence, Charmer made little indication they’ve been working on new music, and two, the EP is a drastic change for the band. It pivots away from the emo-pop they built their name on and towards pastoral, florid indie rock dressed up in steel guitar. It all culminates in the bright jangle of highlight “Just Like Jezebel,” which plays out like a Runnner cover of “Never Let You Go.” The band indicated on Twitter that these four songs didn’t fit the direction the rest of their LP3 material was taking, so Seney Stretch might end up just a detour in the band’s path—but if that’s the case, it proves them to be a far more capable and versatile band than anyone could’ve guessed. 

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Fastbacks – A Quiet Night

Before Subpop became the main home for punk and indie rock in Seattle, there was Fastbacks. Formed in 1979, they were an alchemy where punk and pop met. Calling it pop punk didn’t feel quite right—they had as much in common with ‘60s girl groups as anything else. It was in line with the pop-leaning sensibilities of first-wave punk bands. In 2002, Fastbacks called it quits after a dizzying number of releases. Since then, they’ve reunited but haven’t released material in over a decade. This fact makes A Quiet Night feel important. Even though it’s been so long, the two-song single fits nicely among the rest of the catalog. It sits right at home with the classic material of Fastbacks and also features a Muffs cover as a tribute to Kim Shattuck. 

 Hugo Reyes | @hvreyes5

Nagasaki Swim – Everything Grows

The collection of folk tunes on Nagasaki Swim’s Everything Grows capture both the light, carefree feeling of sitting on a hill with friends watching the sun set and the quiet calm of smoking on the porch in the early morning watching the sun rise. Jasper Boogaard’s light and unobtrusive vocal melodies seem to naturally find their space amidst the steady acoustic strumming and tasteful interjections from gorgeous string arrangements, tasteful trumpet lines, and warm, sprawling lap steel. Boogaard and company keep things under 30 minutes, with the peaceful amble of the title track closing out the record as the atmospheric swell of the instrumentals reaches its highest point.

Aaron Eisenreich | @slobboyreject

Slow Joy – “Crawl II”

Slow Joy has been making a name off wild dynamic swings for a couple years now, but his newest single “Crawl II” takes it to a whole new level. Oscillating between hushed, hypnotic verses and pulsing, towering walls of reverb, it’s likely the very best track the Dallas shoegazer has ever dropped.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Drug Church – “Myopic”

Despite being in the midst of a stacked cross-country tour with Webbed Wing, Anxious, and Prince Daddy & The Hyena, Drug Church still found time in their busy schedule to drop another tumultuous shredder. “Myopia” showcases some of Patrick Kindlon’s most nuanced songwriting and impassioned vocal delivery. Not one to shy away from life’s darker, more unfair side, he allows anger and empathy to coexist in the face of seemingly never-ending wreckage. “But now I’m on a constant watch / Cynical not bitterness / Love my girl and friendships / I forgive all of life’s hassles,” he sings, embracing cautious optimism in true Dudes Rock fashion.

Grace Robins-Somerville | @grace_roso

Valley Queen – “Pavement”

Valley Queen are soaring the skies on their newest single, “Pavement,” but not in an airplane or rocket ship. They’re calm, gliding right above the pine trees on the back of vocalist Natalie Carol’s charming falsetto, shimmering piano flourishes, and guitars that conjure lightning during the song’s cacophonous outro. It’s a blissful and whimsical, like all country inspired indie rock should be.

Nate Cross | @BigNafey

Tetchy – “Smaller / Better”

Tetchy’s lo-fi new single “Smaller / Better,” off their upcoming EP of the same name, finds the band at both their smallest and their best. It’s so intimate and spare it feels nearly claustrophobic, and Maggie Denning’s whispered vocals lend the song an eerie ambience.

Zac Djamoos | @gr8whitebison

Object of Affection – “Run Back”

The LA post-punk band Object of Affection released the pensive video for their single “Run Back” leading up to the release of their debut full-length album Field of Appearances. Directed and edited by Jeremy Stith (of OC hardcore band Fury), the video gently shifts through incandescent portrait shots of the band as listeners are transported into an ’80s post-punk dream tinged with red and blue tones of introspective yearning. Field of Appearances is out now through Profound Lore Records.

Loan Pham | @senseofexile

Sad Girls Aquatic Club – Easier

Sad Girls Aquatic Club build a lush landscape on Easier, allowing the tracks to grow, first creating space in the songs’ electronic constructions and then slowly filling that space like a fog machine filling up a dance floor in an ’80s movie. The group keeps things varied within this sound though, with “Plastic & Pearl” having more of a breezy feel than the fuzzy rocker “Who’s Your Witness,” and psychedelic bounce of “Beyond the Blue” puncturing the starry moonlit sway of the title track and “Cherryhead.”

Aaron Eisenreich | @slobboyreject

Cigarette Camp – Stain Your Teeth

Everything about Cigarette Camp screams ‘90s punk. All you need to do is look at the cut-and-paste album art of Stain Your Teeth to get transported to a long-gone era. But Cigarette Camp still feels distinct enough and concocts its brand of grimy pop-punk. They don’t follow a traditional song structure, choosing to end songs where others would drag them out.

Hugo Reyes | @hvreyes5

Guessing – “thoughts”

Guessing’s first song in two years is also their second song ever. The Stockholm emo band retains the punk spirit that propelled “lungs,” but on “thoughts” it’s all shot through with a more melodic undercurrent, and it suits the foursome well. It’s got a timeless quality—“thoughts” could’ve come out in the ‘90s, the 2000s, or the 2010s (or probably even the 2030s) and it would sound just as good.

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 post it on Fridays on Twitter and then include it in each edition of the Weekly Roundup to make sure you don’t miss any of the great music we’re recommending.

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