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Satellite Mode softly examine the states on "Dream, American," new lP out 7.17

Your guess is as good as the next person’s in terms of whether the American Dream is still a tenable prospect in 2020 — though NYC synthpop duo Satellite Mode’s new video “Dream, American” provides a hazy meditation on what America means, exactly. Home movie visuals and dreamlike arpeggios underscore uncomfortable axioms, how we’re “all longing [for] that good American green,” how antiquated conceptualizations of comfort like “milk money” seem odd by contemporary standards, and how it might be better to set aside old visions and just “let it burn.” During a time when ideas of national identity and success seem increasingly more outdated and convoluted,Satellite Mode’s evenhanded, electronic approach feels centering, a soft-spoken critique for our shitshow year. Watch it below, and stream their new EP Robots vs Party Girls, out today.

   

The Icebergs' ear for eclectic expands on new LP "Add Vice"

The sauntering, somewhat singsong nature of the Icebergs is a terrifyingly brilliant thing to behold, one that through experimental, frequently cello-centric instrumentation upends expectations at every turn. Their new record Add Vice condenses the songwriting of poet and songwriter Jane LeCroy into winding scenes of weird Americana, propelled by tactile instrumentation and a strong bent towards jazz. LeCroy’s cynical tone and weaving vocal performance make Vice perfect listening for fans of Fiona Apple and Tom Waits — give it a long, ruminiative listen below.

   

Gawn jangle onwards in new video “No Light”

The overdriven, jangling nature of “No Light” immediately evokes nostalgia for a cramped performance at Trans Pecos or Babys All Right, yet the breakbeat energy Gawn bring to their performance keeps things forward focused. “Don’t sit around and find out, just get out and go,” sings bandleader and erstwhile touring musician Zach Koenig, an apt sentiment for a period plagued by constant inertia, though the track’s amp-straining guitar and condensed vox a la King Khan and the BBQ show make it difficult to sit still while listening. Sunny dispositions and slight discord make this single just the right amount of rough-hewn, and recommended listening for Friday nights indoors — watch the video below.

   

PREMIERE: Zaliza's indie pop soundtracks vulnerability on new single "Below"

 New York experimental indie pop artist Zaliza reemerges on the scene with new single “Below,” a chilled, somewhat hushed recollection of intimacy. A track centered around the experience of “wanting vultnerability with someone, and knowing neither of us could give that to the other,” Zaliza explores thematic and sonic dualities, melding warm, centered vox with dark, tactile instrumentals texturally reminiscent of jungle and dub electronic music. Such qualities play well into this exploration of separation and togetherness, creating a pervasive sense of familiarity and alienation — the perfect soundtrack for emotional turbulence and the fear of truly being known by another. Give it a listen below, and keep an eye out for companion single “Little Raptures” out next month. Photo by Alexx Duvall

   

PREMIERE: Local Nomad's "Summertime" reminisces on seasons past

It’s not uncommon during periods of stress or uncertainty to regress, or at the very least, imagine some sort of hypothetical bygone age viewed through rose-tinted goggles. Such feverish daydreams are the center of Local Nomad’s new single “Summertime,” a sweltering electro-pop jam that recalls the childlike joys of playing baseball during the warmer months. With synth leads evocative of 80s new wave paired with contemporary, progressive songwriting, multi-instrumentalist Michael Desmond is certainly looking towards the past — though the groove is never overwhelmed by a perverse sense of nostalgia. Rather, Local Nomad’s recollections stay grounded and realistic, letting the track’s vivid memories play off its colorful keys and dynamic vocal performances, in the end crafting a misty, escapist banger for what feels like a ‘lost’ summer — give it a listen below, and be sure to stream the project's self-titled EP, out tomorrow.