The DownLo: Low Roar

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(DownLo is quickfire interview series by Jarrett Edmund. Bands are cornered after their performances and forced to answer the hardhitting questions all in under a minute)
Welcome to the very first iteration of DownLo! Today we are featuring Low Roar, who are currently touring in support of their latest release, Once in a Long, Long While. We caught up with vocalist and brainchild Ryan Karazija after the set:

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Fresh Friday Mix: Toro y Moi

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This week we are featuring a mix from the much beloved master of ‘chill,’ Chaz Bundick. Known more widely as Toro Y Moi, Bundick has been producing chillwave and Hypnagogic pop music since about 2010 and it doesn’t look like he’s planning to slow down.

A couple of years ago Dummy Magazine asked Bundick to put together a mix and the result was this showcase of his favourite electronic music.

See Playlist


Pale Grey – Billy

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Pale Grey are a three-piece Belgian indie band. After more than a year in the studio, the trio has returned to release a new single called “Billy.” The song is a multi sensory dream-pop experience. Starting with icy synths, the track is then filled with evocative textures and otherworldly ethereal vocals.

“It depicts the portrait of a lost boy who will have to fight to find his own way by bringing into the light the gold he has in his hands,” says the band when talking about the track. “As the symbol of a contemporary youth. A youth full of potential but in which a embittered world forgets too often to trust”

Catch the band on tour as they cruise around European roads starting this month.

Pale Grey – Billy


The Shiverettes: Dead Men Can’t Cat Call

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photo: Jarrett Edmund

A sweaty wine-cellar in the downtown core is not where you would expect to find the feminist manifesto being recited, but somewhere in an unheated garage Calgary’s The Shiverettes hammered out the details of their debut LP, Dead Men Can’t Cat Call, and brought their frenetic rape-culture takedown to the basement bar. The album is a tour-de-force that hardly surfaces for air: lead singer Hayley Muir channels both the personal and the political, demanding female autonomy and decimating those in her way.

Album opener “Broken Record” sets the pace early, as Muir and guitarist Kaely Cormack muse about anxiety the only way one should: yelling. Muir’s storytelling takes center-stage on “Betty”, the sort of track you would expect if the Dixie Chick’s decided to make a punk record about revenge murder after fatally poisoning Earl. But amidst the savage dismantling of heinous men both local and federal, Muir finds critical time for anti-establishment philosophy and even hopeless romanticism. “Missing Stair” boast the line “We’re all scared into silence / Conditioned to accept the status quo,” commentary that could be directed at any facet of the late capitalist patriarchal chokehold. While “Obsessed” chronicles the lovesick voyeurism of the digital age. Perhaps this is a stinging critique of pervy guy syndrome; men who effectively stalk women on social media. Or maybe it serves as a careful role reversal, revealing Muir’s own relentless romanticism and bloodlusty passion for a stranger she admires. Whatever the case, this delicate balance between real life storytelling and fantasy creates a relatable body of work for anyone of any gender who has experienced the oppressive male gaze.

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photo: Jarrett Edmund

The title track is an ruthless critique of cat-calling culture complete with Muir’s tongue-in-cheek kitty commentary and the vocal stylings of the neighborhood felines (actually). Cormack’s crunching solos and occasional vocal interjections paint the foreground with howling grit. The one-two punch of Muir and Cormack is a forceful combination, but the glue that keeps The Shiverettes in one piece can be found on the backbeat. Bassist Cecilia Schlemm effortlessly climbs scales with spider-like precision. While drummer Steve Richter keeps the pulse on full cardiac. “Shout Your Assault” is a call-to-arms for victims of all stripes, while “Bad for Me” serves as a rare breath of air, a self-reflexive analysis. “You’re bad for me // Well I’m bad for me.” It’s an honest statement about self-destruction and relationships. This raw-hearted reality leads into earnest aspiration as album closer “Lockdown” sees Muir cooing “Don’t wanna steal your man / I wanna be the man.” The sentiment is simple but poignant: goodbye patriarchy.

(Although not on the record, The Shiverettes were joined onstage with classically trained pianist Kenna Burima for several tracks. What seems like a missmatch of styles resulted in another dimension for the band, atmospheric organs spun their sound from surf-punk fuck-offery to Steppenwolf-esque throwback rock. Keys or no keys, their performance was blunt force trauma and cathartic therapy all at once.)

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photo: Jarrett Edmund

As a whole Dead Men Can’t Cat Call is an impressive debut and a timely statement. There is no removing the art from the context: Calgary has become a launching-point for feminist dialogue and inclusive spaces. Muir and Cormack have already hosted two iterations of the ever-popular FemmeWave Arts Festival, which began as Canada’s first feminist multimedia festival back in 2015. Despite their success and the progress made locally, there is still plenty of work to be done, and plenty of daily injustices making headlines worldwide. One thing is for sure, The Shiverettes won’t be running out of material any time soon.

You can snag the album online, stream on Spotify, or buy it direct from the source!

April 13: Vancouver, BC @ Black Lab w/ Glad Rags and Alien Boys
April 21: Saskatoon, SK @ Amigos w/ The Garrys and Power Buddies
April 22: Regina, SK @ T&A Vinyl w/ The Garrys, Power Buddies and Homo Monstrous
May 5: Lethbridge, AB @ The Owl w/ J. Blisette


Chillwave Wednesday CXXXI

Chillwave Wednesday 2017

We’re lighting up this week’s Chillwave Wednesday playlist with a new Fake Money remix one of KOWL’s track “Struggle Pt 1.” Don’t let the title of the track fool you though, this remix doesn’t have a pinch of struggle associated with it. It’s smooth sailing the whole way through. The same is true for every song on this mix.

Chillwave Wednesday is a semi-weekly shortlist of chill music from around the internet.

Chillwave Wednesday is also available on Spotify. See all of the tracks posted to Chillwave Wednesday 2017 each week on Spotify here: http://play.spotify.com/user/thenewlofi/playlist/ChillwaveWednesday

Playlist


Bobby Uzoma: Alone

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I’m really excited to share the new single from Toronto-based singer / songwriter / producer Bobby Uzóma. Two years ago Uzóma released a chilling and soulful debut called “Sleeve” and it still sends shivers down my spine when I hear it.

A year later he came back onto the scene with his track “Holy Grails” which started to put Uzóma on the map for his unique variety of electro-soul. The combination of his liquid-hot vocals paired with a slowly building backing track is Uzóma’s signature. He’s a master at building up the tension in a track and holding you there. And there is no exception with his most recent release: “Alone.”

“Alone” starts out with the sound of light rain and a fluttering cymbal to carry the percussion. Uzóma’s slides and then is quickly accompanied by minimal snares and kick drums.

Have a listen to the new single below:

Bobby Uzóma – Alone


Mount Kimbie: We Go Home (Feat. James Blake)

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James Blake and Mount Kimbie showcased their combined genius recently and I couldn’t be happier. Well, I could be; the song’s too bloody short! This is a collaboration that I’ve long-desired but it feels as though we’re being teased with a preview. I don’t particularly believe in heaven or hell anymore, but I assume that the latter is a world filled with beautiful James Blake inspired songs that end at the two minute mark —right as your body begins to be engulfed by the euphoria created by the artist. Oh, the cruelty!

Nonetheless, “We Go Home Together” is a work of art that deserves appreciation for what it is. Hats off to the trio.


Slowdive: Sugar For The Pill (Music Video)

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1995 boasts the year in which the words “Slowdive” and “album” were last uttered in the same sentence. Now 2017, 22 years since the release of ‘Pygmalion‘, the British indie-rockers emerge from an abyss, eager to reclaim a throne that a sizable cult-following will insist is rightfully theirs.

As we approach May 5th, we inch closer to the release of their self-titled album, Slowdive. “Sugar For The Pill“, the project’s sophomore single, is a dream-pop-indie-gem if I were forced to categorize it; cloud music with a touch of the past. The band seems to have discovered a sound that grasps the attention of a younger, newly-acquired fan base while simultaneously keeping generation X at a short arm’s length. They might have been absent for a while but have returned with the same timeless sound that our parents familiarized themselves with years ago.

Pre-order ‘Slowdive‘ here: