Heartbreaking Bravery

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Tag: Momma

The Five Best Records of the Past Two Weeks

A lot of records can come out in the 14-day span that comprised the last two full weeks. Most of those records are doomed to either be lost or forgotten. A handful of those records will be kept and loved by a select few people. Very few, if any, will leave a visible legacy. In the moment, none of that comes close to mattering. We’ve lost some of the best records of all time to ash, dust, and erosion. These five records, with any luck, will be five that people fight to protect. They’ll be honored by people that care. And they’ll stay attached to this list until this site disappears or loses any living connection. Enjoy these to the fullest while they’re present.

1. Peach Kelli Pop – Gentle Leader

Several years and releases deep into a career, Peach Kelli Pop return with Gentle Leader, their strongest entry in an impossibly charming discography. Continuing to produce fired up basement pop of the highest order, the band immediately sets Gentle Leader ablaze with the scintillating “Hello Kitty Knife”, setting the record’s pace at full sprint from the jump. It’s an attention-ensuring opener and the band pays it off in kind with the nine tracks that follow. Each track exudes an irrepressible exuberance, offering a welcome, joyous reprieve from the deluge of summer records grappling with unspeakable heaviness.

2. THICK – Would You Rather?

THICK have been making some noticeable waves for the past few years, seemingly pushing harder and with more determination at each opportunity they were afforded the chance to make an impression. The band’s Would You Rather? is the finest example of this to date. A self-assured four song EP that finds them taking some small risks (the scream-alongs and tempo shifts of “Be Myself” are a perfect indicator) while embracing their core identity. Teeming with energy and channeling well-earned frustration into production, Would You Rather? is the kind of release that reminds us we can learn from our own angst and punch back at the wrongs of the world.

3. sewingneedle – user error

A handful of weeks ago, Heartbreaking Bravery had the honor of premiering “234”, the lead-off track from sewingneedle‘s user error, a blistering record that should have a lot of people taking notice. Call it post-grunge, post-hardcore, post-punk, but don’t dismiss it as being a product of past influences. user error is a distinctly modern beast, one that bucks and seethes and digs its hooves into the ground and its claws into flesh. Aggressive at every turn — including its haunted, near-melancholic atmosphere — and fearless in its execution, user error is the sound of a band that knows it can seize an impressive future by virtue of creating their own moments.

4. Momma – Interloper

Following 2016’s introductory thanks come again EP, Momma have come back with a sterling debut full-length in Interloper. Full of mid-tempo slow-burn basement pop and clever songwriting, the record’s a testament to their emergent talent. It’s a record that’s aware of its tone and establishes its own mesmerizing pace with exacting precision. Pulling from just about every corner of the indie rock canon, Momma finds a way to create something that manages to sound both familiar and distinct enough to avoid being lumped in with any specific movement. A fascinating, compelling listen from a band whose career continues to be worth watching.

5. Hatchie – Sugar & Spice

Already destined to be another illustrious feather in Double Double Whammy‘s already impressive hat, Hatchie’s Sugar & Spice is a bracing look backwards, tapping into the warmth that coats nostalgia’s fondest sides. Soft and full of hard-won clarity, Sugar & Spice fearlessly announces Hatchie as a major talent. Dream pop that refuses to shut its eyes, Sugar & Spice is the kind of EP that doesn’t just resonate but lingers after the initial thrill’s worn off, showing an intricately assembled tapestry that delights in revealing a multitude of layers. It’s an essential addition to any serious record collector’s summer haul and as clear-eyed of a debut effort that 2018’s produced.

Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever – Talking Straight (Stream)

The past few days have brought a handful of great tracks into the world from acts like Momma, CHASTITY, Dama Scout, Lawn, High Sunn, Marmalakes, Hiding Behind Sound, Little Junior, Jesse Jo Stark, John Craigie, Many Rooms, The Saxophones, Jenny Hval, Feverbones, Secret Mountain, Deux Trois, Life in the Vacuum, and Patches Paradise. However, today’s focus is going to shift back to a song that was initially released as a music video but is available for standalone streaming now: Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever‘s “Talking Straight”.

If the band’s name — popularly abbreviated to both RBCF and Rolling Blackouts C.F. — looks familiar, it’s because they’ve landed on this site a handful of times in the past. Curiously, despite having existed for over 5 years, the band’s never put out a proper full-length. While they can claim a handful of outstanding EP’s and standalone tracks to their name, the proper album has eluded them in the past. It’s allowed them a storied history and an abundance of time to develop ideas should that day ever arrive.

Fortunately, it seems as if that time’s paid off, if the two singles to tease their forthcoming full-length Hope Downs are any indication. The most recent single, “Talking Straight” comes off as particularly promising, standing as both a career high mark for the band and a track that’s destined to wind up on hundreds upon hundreds of mixes made for long drives. It’s a driving, folk-inflected piece of punk-tinged Americana but it’s delivered with more of a sneer than the band’s revealed in a while.

A talk-sing vocal delivery suits the verses as well and makes the chorus feel significantly more explosive in contrast. “Talking Straight” also navigates its momentum incredibly well, providing the proceedings with gripping dynamics that keep the listener invested. While the song approaches four minutes in total, the breezy, toe-tapping nature of the track makes that run time feel nearly halved. It’s another extraordinary outing for a band that’s consistently great and goes quite a ways in positioning Hope Downs as one of the year’s potential must-hear releases. Don’t miss out on the ride.

Listen to “Talking Straight” below and pre-order Hope Downs from Sub Pop here.