Heartbreaking Bravery

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Tag: April 2019

April 2019: Three Weeks, Four Music Videos

Three weeks into April 2019 and the month’s yielded a staggering amount of good material and a small handful that’s genuinely great. Today, this site will feature a quartet of songs, a quartet of music videos (with one being a unified collection), and a quartet of full streams. A wide range of genres and styles is on display and everything’s more than worthy of some serious listening and/or watching investment. Art this strong should always be featured in some capacity, as many times over as possible. Scroll down and enjoy the riches.

Charly Bliss – Hard to Believe

Charly Bliss have taken some serious gambles in the lead-up to the band’s forthcoming Never Enough. Each of the quartet’s first two singles from the record saw the band take a running leap into more pop-friendly territory, with both “Capacity” and “Chatroom” on the fringes of spectacle. Both of those songs received attention-grabbing music videos from emerging powerhouse directors Michelle Zauner and Maegan Houang. “Hard to Believe” — a recent highlight of the band’s notoriously energetic live show — finds Charly Bliss offering a bridge between Guppy‘s sugar-rush of punk sweat and Never Enough‘s outsize ambition, while the Henry Kaplan-directed music video scales back the conceptional narrative for one of the band’s best visual offerings to date. A practice, a marble (a winking reference to another of the band’s unreleased songs), some truly exceptional editing work, subtle B-horror references, and a might-be murderer all coalesce into one of the most pure distillations of joy that 2019’s offered to date.

Fanclub – Uppercut

Shannon Wiedemeyer takes the directorial reins on Fanclub’s appealingly dreamy “Uppercut” and balances the clip somewhere between John Hughes and Jean-Luc Godard, evoking iconic imagery from decades past with a studied eye that serves the clip well. “Uppercut” itself feels lost in time, which the video wisely accentuates. Soft, hazy, and aided by a noticeable but welcome touch of the romantic, “Uppercut” is a fittingly minor work worthy of its influences.

Spencer Radcliffe & Everyone Else – Here Comes the Snow

“Here Comes the Snow”, the latest single from Spencer Radcliffe & Everyone Else, feels as if its being lovingly haunted by Mark Linkous’ gentle spirit. Unassuming and low-key, the clip’s pitched perfectly by directors Dakota Sillyman and John TerEick, who play into the song’s restraint to produce something absorbing and undeniably tender. Soft transitions, low lighting, and paper snowflakes litter the video’s landscape, steadily placing the viewer directly by some imaginary fire’s cackle in a cozy cabin during the dead of winter. In the end, “Here Comes the Snow” winds up being less of a warning and more of an invitation, to a trip well worth taking.

thanks for coming – part i: you’re welcome

A video compilation that arrives ahead of thanks for coming‘s no problem (due out in July), part i: you’re welcome tackles the 24 track record’s first six songs. Each one of those songs gets a distinct visual treatment that’s unified by a staunchly DIY aesthetic. Grainy, lo-fi, and utterly charming, part i: you’re welcome is a glimpse towards a future that demands to be cherished, something subtly underscored by the evident nostalgia coursing throughout this video project. Each of the six clips is met with a different directorial vision but they all work in tandem to create an effect that feels fleet in the moment but lingers long after the final frame.

April 2019: Three Weeks, Four Songs

Three weeks into April 2019 and the month’s yielded a staggering amount of good material and a small handful that’s genuinely great. Tonight, this site will feature a quartet of songs, a quartet of music videos (with one being a unified collection), and a quartet of full streams. A wide range of genres and styles is on display and everything’s more than worthy of some serious listening and/or watching investment. Art this strong should always be featured in some capacity, as many times over as possible. Scroll down and enjoy the riches.

Yot Club – Japan

“Japan” is a perfect song for the changing weather, sun-speckled and carefree, Yot Club have crafted something that practically exudes summer. A lo-fi, slacker surf-pop monster, “Japan” features some exceedingly light digital affectations but makes its bones with a gift of a chorus that’s more infectious than anything else from the year so far. It’s a gift of a track from a band that’s bound to be turning heads as 2019 progresses.

Truth Club – Tethering

Coming on the heels of one of the year’s best singles in “Not An Exit”, Truth Club waste no time in proving that song’s strength wasn’t a fluke. “Tethering” is another triumph, mixing some of the best elements of the East Coast’s DIY-leaning punk scene over the past decade. A contemplative narrative, a handful of atmospheric riffs, and a palpable desire to feel and to hold onto that feeling. A genre masterclass that deftly combines shoegaze, post-punk, basement pop, and trace elements of reverb-addled psychedelia, Truth Club have offered another strong hint that they may be sitting on one of the year’s best albums.

SYBS – Paid Gofyn Pam

Every so often, a foreign language song will drift across the radar and tap directly into the sound that’s predominantly featured on these pages and SYBS’ “Paid Gofyn Pam” is firmly among their ranks. Welsh for ‘do not ask why’, “Paid Gofyn Pam” is a four minute basement pop treasure that sounds like it’d be right at home on a label like Salinas. Full of vibrant life, the song leans into its clean tones with conviction and transcends the translation barrier with ease.

Slow Pulp – High

“High” is yet another demonstration of how basement pop tendencies can inform and elevate shoegaze and vice versa. It’s a towering number with a slight run-time that finds Slow Pulp at the top of their game. Dreamy soundscapes and harsh feedback twist into an unlikely marriage, the discord and the harmony locked into codependency. Doubt remains a central theme to Slow Pulp’s characteristically engaging narratives but the music surrounding the sentiment has never been so powerfully assured. Keep both eyes on the band, who seem primed to make some very memorable noise.