Song: “Kiss and Tell”
Album/EP: Year Of The Snake
High-octane rock with just the right blend of snottiness and jockiness, “Kiss and Tell” is meant to be played very incredibly loud. There’s nary a moment of rest from the pounding kit, redlining guitars, and straining vocals – it’s not necessarily inventive, but boy does it ever nail the tone. Kind of plays like a stadium-filling evolution of nerdy punk a la Cheap Trick.
Artist: Jordan Klassen
Cute, thoughtful, and warmly intimate singer-songwriter bedroom pop can be found in Jordan Klassen’s “Identivacation”. Flitting keys with a sweet and curious tone provide a tonal introduction that is carried by Klassen’s breathy mouthful of a vocal performance, familiarly constant guitar picking, and muted drums and bass that pulse pleasantly in the background.
Artist: Bikini Test Failure
Well it’s got a trumpet so immediately you know I’m in, but that’s not all there is to like about Bikini Test Failure’s “Uncomplimentary”. Lush and layered guitars and keys provide a hearty glam base to this pop ballad, which also features a few other muted brass features, tinkling bells, and a jilted vocal delivery to complete the package.
You don’t need to understand the language to be absolutely taken by this grand, haunting Norwegian epic. Powerful and sweeping chorals, droning strings, deep and booming lead vocals, frantic throat singing, and primal drumming craft a bold and striking folk tune that touches a deep ancestral instinct in the listener. Prepare to immerse yourself in this one.
Song: “Born To Be”
Maybe it’s the gang vocals, maybe it’s the perfectly grimy guitar tone, maybe it’s the hearty and full kick drum on their kit – something about Wildstreet’s “Born To Be” really just gets your engine revving. A bit of nu-metal attitude goes the distance on this tune without dragging down the crisp instrumentals into any unnecessary rap breakdowns – can you tell I’ve been burned before by tunes like this?