King Princess, Hugs of the Sky, Ben Auld, Kate Clover, Lovechild, The Mary Veils, The Juniper Berries are among these press releases for January.
King Princess – “Little Bother”: A breezy pop song with light beats and emotional whispery vocals. The song features singer-songwriter Fousheé who co-wrote the song with King Princess alongside Zach Fogarty (A$AP Rocky, Girlpool, Claud). “I have been a big fan of Fousheé for a while, so when we started DM’ing and eventually set a date in the studio, it was a dream,” King Princess says. “‘Little Bother’ kind of came out of nowhere; Zach had the guitar part and Fou and I just started going off. It became this song about tiptoeing around someone you’ve lost and feeling like a pest. It poses questions to a person who may not be listening at all and I think that’s a beautiful sentiment.” Zach Fogarty also co-produced the song. The new song follows long-awaited fan favorite “House Burn Down” released last year, and “PAIN” and “Only Time Makes It Human” from 2020. In 2019, her debut album Cheap Queen was released via Mark Ronson’s Zelig Records/Columbia Records to widespread critical acclaim. Additionally, King Princess will begin supporting Kacey Musgraves on her U.S. tour next week, with stops in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, and more.
Hugs of the Sky – “Creature Up Your Feature”: The song, that starts with laser beams, is a lo-fi psych-punk number with fuzzy catchy guitar riffs and fun vocals. This is a track from Belgian psych-rockers Hugs of the Sky’s forthcoming album, “Tangerine Boredom Delusion” set for a release on February 22. Band member Boris Willems shares: “It’s a song of unanswered and unreachable love, perception and illustration of how the lover is almost always a madman (like maybe all of the album). But still, the echoes of tangibility and accessibility lurk as a haunting memory. Like all of Hugs of the Sky, there’s some tragic, but there’s also always the need to embrace this mood and to show there’s some hope and light in the darkness. The title is almost literally a fusion of the songs ‘Creature Feature’ from Meatbodies and ‘Suture Up Your Future’ from Queens of the Stone Age. Also sonically and aesthetically, these are very influential songs. I think these bands have a very specific, untamable sound, a sound which shaped music history.” Accompanying the single is an equally trippy music video created by Rania Daher (@ranxdeer), a Lebanese artist and digital designer. Vibrant, whacky, and totally psychedelic, the video leads listeners even further deeper into the sonic universe that Hugs of The Sky create with their music. On the collaboration, Boris shares: “I saw her work on Instagram and the figures and concepts she uses, seemed to have the necessary irony and very fine taste to ask her to make a video for our song.”
Ben Auld – “O Athena!”: A sunny folksy song filled with vocal harmonies and vintage string-and-key arrangements reminiscent of the Laurel Canyon’s old days. This is the second single off Ben Auld’s forthcoming debut album, “Lemongrass,” due February 15 via Earth Libraries. Speaking of the track, Ben wrote: “This is possibly the oldest song on the album and it stuck around because I could imagine an audience singing along to it. Sufjan’s Illinois is one of my favorite albums ever and I wanted to create something that had a similar feeling of exultation. I can’t remember where the chorus lyrics came from, I guess I felt they fit this theme of praising or elevating people. Making a new friend or founding a new relationship can make people so elated and joyous. This song tries to express that period of time before things settle back to normality. The recording process for each song is slightly different and with this I wanted it to feel like it had depth without it being drenched in reverbs. So I recorded the bass, drums, and rhythm guitars to cassette and then used an 8 track to layer the keys and picked guitars. Then I bounced that all to another 4-track and recorded the vocals. Each time a layer was bounced it got pushed down in the mix and so you have this sort of stratification effect.”
Kate Clover – “These Boots Are Made for Walkin'”: A great rendition of the Nancy Sinatra classic that adds mysterious layers, while bringing up the badass nature of the tune to the surface. It’s ready for a motorcycle ride with the menacing snarl of the Cramps. Speaking on the single, Kate wrote: “The cover was produced by Gregg Foreman (Cat Power, Delta 72, The Gossip) and Brandon Welchez (Crocodiles). [It] was heavily influenced by Suicide, Primal Scream, and the Gun Club. I wanted to create a song that sounded as if Suicide produced a Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazelwood song but make it my own. The song is a duet with Warren Thomas, lead singer and founder of The Abigails who specialize in their own unique brand of Outlaw Country.” The video for the song was filmed at the famous Monty bar and Kate Clover’s debut LP, “Bleed Your Heart Out” is due in spring 2022.
Lovechild – “Hats Off”: A gritty, electrifying, high-energy song with a fierce delivery and an old-school rock & roll attitude. The song is the opening track of Lovechild’s debut album “All You Need Is Lovechild,” a 9-track self-produced rock and roll powerhouse. With creative, wry, and oftentimes vulnerable lyrics, “All You Need Is Lovechild” is full of scuzzy, electric, and riff-heavy moments, elevated with frontman’s Leo Lovechild’s classic rock delivery. Alongside the album, the band is also sharing a short documentary “Driving With Leo.” Filmed by longtime collaborator Jack Tumen, “Driving With Leo” follows frontman, poet, singer-songwriter Leo Lovechild driving through his hometown of New York City, where he shares his musings on life, music, writing, and New York, offering a companion and context to the album. Their debut album is inspired by frontman Leo Lovechild’s life in and around his native New York City, all the mystique and romance that surrounds that notion, and by the band itself and their journey together in life and in music. It’s music that’s meant to be as hopeful as it is sad, a reflection of the drive and determination it takes to keep going and keep striving for happiness every day. Leo confides, “Some songs are romantic, some are angry, some are wistful, but in its entirety, the music is an expression of the human drive to keep going and keep striving for the potentially unattainable in the midst of a world that often tries to beat us down with struggle and strife.”
The Mary Veils – “Bone Blossom Green”: A chaotic fuzz fest layered with the right amount of grit, driven by relentless drumbeats and reverb-drenched chords. Speaking on the track, the band wrote: “‘Bone Blossom Green’ was based off a riff we had floating around for a while. Originally, we thought it would just be that main riff, for the entirety of the song but it kind of took a different turn while writing. It was one of the more challenging ones for us to finish, but we think it really showcases us as a band, and in a way highlights how we’ve developed musical and what our sound has become.” This comes from the Philadelphia garage-punk quartet’s debut LP, “Esoteric Hex,” due March 25 via PNKSLM Recordings. “We’ve been sitting on the album since the start of the pandemic,” says frontman Brian Von Uff, “We recorded a lot of these songs around the same time as the EP, so there’s a similar feel to them, but I think the songs on Esoteric Hex really fit together. There’s more cohesiveness to it. I feel like Somewhere Over the Rowhome was a good showcase of our sound, whereas Esoteric Hex is a complete piece of work.”
The Juniper Berries – “My Ambition”: An indie-rock catchy song with Josh Stirm’s melancholic but determined vocals, some raucous moments, and overall, plenty of surprises packed in less than 3 minutes. “My Ambition” was originally written for The Juniper Berries’ upcoming third record but took on new significance throughout lockdown. During the recording process, Stirm was heavily conflicted about continuing to pursue music. “My Ambition” became not only a vessel for his angst and fear about the surrounding world but also a postcard from his pre-pandemic self-reminding him what it means to be an artist during strange times. Speaking on the single, Stirm wrote: “The song started out as kind of a jokey country song that I almost didn’t pursue. I think when I was writing it, I was mostly just really stressed out. It felt kind of throwaway at first, like one of those songs that comes together so easily you’re like well this can’t be that good. I wrote [it] while driving from Ashland to Portland, OR during a solo road trip in late-2019. I was about to move to Austin, as well as in the process of booking a tour and hammering out our last record’s release. I just felt overwhelmed by everything in that moment and wrote the song almost as a wish that I could just quit music and be rid of my desire to keep it going. After lockdown, the song took on a whole new meaning for me and serendipitously ended up being the very project that brought me back to making music with other people again. We tracked it in a couple of sessions at Dave Hanson’s home studio in south Austin. The meat of it went really fast, partially thanks to the demo I’d made back in Oregon with my friend Jonathan Nelson. We nailed down the bulk of the song in the first session, then spent the next few laying down harmonies and twinkly stuff. Dave kept asking me if it was done or not and I kept coming back to the studio with more harmony ideas and layers. I think he was annoyed at first that we couldn’t just move on to the next song but in the end, we’re both really proud of how it came out. This is actually the first Juniper Berries song to feature a glockenspiel. Those things do in fact still rip.”
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