Heartbreaking Bravery

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Tag: Scott Bartenhagen

Pleasure Leftists – You You (Stream)

Pleasure Leftists XX

The second of two recaps this night, this one hinges on the success of another site favorite: Pleasure Leftists. Before diving into their latest single, though, it’s worth taking a beat to highlight some of the other incredible work to have seen release over the course of the day. Active Child’s spellbinding clip for “1999” and Titus Andronicus’ appropriately manic short film The Magic Morning offered up strong representation for the more cinematic-leaning releases.

Scott Bartenhagen’s Black Dane EP stuck out as one of the more enchanting full streams of recent memory and there were a handful of other single streams deserving of attention, including: Bully’s fiery Belle & Sebastian cover, La Luz’s “I Don’t Wanna Be Anywhere“, Gwilym Gold’s “Flex“, and Blank Realm’s “River of Longing“. Then, of course, there was Pleasure Leftists’ “You You”.

One of last year’s most unexpected highlights was catching Pleasure Leftists not once but twice playing shows during NXNE that weren’t affiliated with the festival. Now, following two extraordinary self-titled releases, the band’s started veering closer to the pop bent that’s informed a lot of their most exciting work. “You You”, the band’s lead-off single for their upcoming album The Woods of Heaven finds the band hitting a new career high.

As tense and bleak as anything in the band’s catalog, “You You” also finds Pleasure Leftists tapping into something that feels more vibrant and alive than their past work. It’s an inspired piece of work on what may very well be winding up stealthily cutting through 2015’s wealth of fine releases to wind up towards the front of the pack. Not only a brute reminder of the band’s strength but of their unassuming grace.

All of the Gothic post-punk touch points remain the predominant driving forces behind the band’s aesthetic and they’ve honed their skills to a fine point, that much is evident. Even with that being the case, it’s impossible to fake genuine inspiration, a trait that should be coursing through The Woods of Heaven‘s veins. In what promises to be a release worthy of high levels of anticipation and excitement, “You You” manages to be the perfect warning shot.

Listen to “You You” below and keep an eye on Deranged Records for pre-orders to go up in advance of The Woods of Heaven‘s August 28 release.

Coaster – Paralyzed (Stream)

coaster

Community Records have been putting together an extraordinary run of releases lately and that patterns set to continue with Coaster’s Slow Jams. Approaching outsider punk-inflected basement pop with an immediately distinguishable identity is one thing to simply achieve but Coaster’s on the verge of perfecting that dynamic. Restrained but strangely volatile, the band’s sunk their teeth into something that feels familiar but incredibly unique.

“Paralyzed” elicits the opposition reaction of its title; it’s nearly impossible to not find your head nodding along as the song wills itself towards a powerful, climactic finish. It’s a fairly astonishing piece of work that bodes well for the band’s future. If Slow Jams can sustain the best qualities of “Paralyzed”, it’ll very easily find itself among my favorite release of the year.

Listen to “Paralyzed” below and pick up a copy of Slow Jams from Community Records here. Find 10 more excellent songs to have been released in the past two weeks below the embed.

Gardens & Villa – Fixations
Clearance – You’ve Been Pre-Approved
Widowspeak – Girls
Ricked Wicky – Tomfoole Terrific
Peter Matthew Bauer – Hold on to Someone (Quiet Version)
Scott Bartenhagen – Beacons
White Reaper – Pills
Alice – Shitty
Native Eloquence – Habits
Advance Base – Trisha Please Come Home