by Dan Goldin (@post_trash_)
Welcome to FUZZY MEADOWS, our weekly recap of this week's new music. We're sharing our favorite releases of the week in the form of albums, singles, and music videos along with the "further listening" section of new and notable releases from around the web. It's generally written in the early hours of the morning and semi-unedited... but full of love and heart. The list is in alphabetical order and we sincerely recommend checking out all the music we've included. There's a lot of great new music being released. Support the bands you love. Spread the word and buy some new music.
*Disclaimer: We are making a conscious effort not to include any artist in our countdown on back-to-back weeks in order to diversify the feature, so be sure to check the "further listening" as well because it's often of top-notch quality too.
ASTRAL SWANS | "What Are You Gonna Do With Yourself"
When we last heard from Calgary's Astral Swans, they had just released All My Favorite Singers Are Willie Nelson, one of our favorite albums of 2015. Three years later, Matthew Swann and his beautiful project are back with Strange Prison, a new full length produced by Scott Munro of Preoccupations. Lead single "What Are You Gonna Do With Yourself" reintroduces us to the sparse and spectacular world of Swann's songwriting. His gentle vocals lend are soft but confident, singing with a hazy sort of dejection, offering lines like, "when I finally get a chance, make the same mistakes again". The song's gorgeous backdrop of acoustic guitars, simplistic yet effective rhythms, and the breezy whir of electronics create a heavenly soundscape for Swann to ponder it all.
GIRL RAY | "Audiotree Live"
Let's be honest, everything about Girl Ray is just delightful. Last year's Earl Grey LP has snuck up on in the past few months, a record I appreciated at first listen and thoroughly love at this point. When it comes to reimagining that 70's AM radio pop magic, there's Alvvays and there's Girl Ray, a young trio from London who's twee melodies and stunning accents play perfectly into their love of The Beach Boys, ABBA, and The Cardigans. Setting the stage is Poppy Hankin's amazing voice, alternating between higher and lower registers like shades of color with her accent never waning. On their recent Audiotree session, the band sound dazzling, playing their unabashed pop with perfection. It's too good and I can't stop watching.
LACE | "Amnesia"
Holy hell, there's a lot of urgency on Lace's "Amnesia," the first single from the Houston quintet's upcoming album, Human Condition. Their bold and brash version of hardcore and abrasive post-punk comes out swinging, with only ringing feedback as a warning, the band absolutely tear into their aggressive album opener, a song that pounds and convulses, writhing with an untamed rage and vitriol that goes delightfully berserk. While their record veers between primal post-punk starkness and sinister hardcore, "Amnesia" is all the latter, unrelenting even as it wraps itself in circles. Lace and their dynamic debut are worth keeping an eye on... you'll probably want to leave one eye open anyway after this one.
LAWN | "2000 Boy"
New Orleans' Lawn are a special band, the type that can shift between jangly pop, warm indie psych, and tangled moments of post-punk without ever committing to one sound, creating something cohesive in the process. Following 2016's exceptional out-of-nowhere introductory EP, Big Sprout, the band will release their full-length debut, Blood On The Tracks, on May 11th via Forged Artifacts. I've had the pleasure of hearing the record and I'm happy to say it's an early favorite for the year. "2000 Boy," the album's first single pulls from the garage pop minimalism of Flying Nun's catalog, built on tight melodies and precision rhythms that carry the jangle into the psychedelic beyond. It's just one of the many sounds Lawn do so well.
MEDIA JEWELER | "Splayed Wayside"
Media Jeweler's latest single, "Splayed Wayside" is full of their bright and aggressive tendencies, a song that jostles itself to life with a stuttering stop and start intro. The band work their magic, tumbling into a caustic groove, the guitars stabbing at the fractured rhythms as the lyrics come in quick couplets, "Splayed wayside / Stolen glance / Mouth agape / Moonlit trash". Sound fun? You can sing along together with the band's karaoke video. The song breaks free from it's own opposing forces, eventually tangling together into a swarm of grinding bass and both guitar and vocal harmonies that range from piercing to gorgeous. Brutal and brilliant, the controlled chaos of "Splayed Wayside" is what sets Media Jeweler apart from the pack.
RENATA ZEIGUER | "Follow Me Down" (BTR Live Studio)
We've written about Renata Zeiguer's "Follow Me Down" and her new album, Old Ghost, in Fuzzy Meadows and well... we love it and can't ever get enough, especially when seeing it performed at BTR Live Studio. Zeiguer and her band are tight and majestic, weaving in and out of her dreamy art-pop bliss.
A DEER A HORSE "Cold Shoulder" | AMEN DUNES "Believe" | BIG HEET "Suffocation" | BIG K.R.I.T. "1999" (feat. Lloyd) | BONNY DOON "Long Wave" | CASSANDRA JENKINS "Audiotree Live" | CAVERN OF ANTI-MATTER "Hormone Lemonade" LP | CLEVER GIRLS "Dumb Smile" | COURTNEY BARNETT "Need A Little Time" | THE CURFEWS "Cling" | EELS "Premonition" | EGGS! "In Four Parts" LP | FOLLIES "Pride" | FREAK HEAT WAVES "Toxic Talk Show" | THE FRITZ "The Fritz" LP | GENTLE HEAT "Dissolve" LP | HONEY AND SALT "A Nihilist Takes Up Knitting" | HONEY RADAR "Middle Class Revolt" (The Fall cover) | JEAN GRAE & QUELLE CHRIS "Zero" | THE MESSTHETICS "The Messthetics" LP | MIND SPIDERS "Outside" | MYTHLESS "Patience Hell" EP | THE NIGHT SCREAMS "Big Picture" | OUGHT "Desire" | PARLOR WALLS "Low Vulture" | PRIMITIVE MAN "Sugar Hole" | RUN THE JEWELS "Oh Mama" | SALINE "Knee Socks" | STEPHE COOPER "No Other" | WAX CHATTELS "In My Mouth" | WRONG "Zero Cool"