Welcome back, friends. February is a strange month: Groundhog Day, Valentine’s Day, Family Day. And yet it’s the shortest of the year, leap day included. But as these mundane holidays washed over us, we had a chance to dig into a variety of sounds. To help you #turnup, power down or just sit and stare, here’s this month’s Bands Spotted:
Solids are from Montréal and their sound is something of a mix between shoegaze inspired grunge and indie pop. Coming off their debut LP, Solids are looking towards a more articulate approach to songwriting. This is reflected in their latest single, “Blank Stare”. It’s almost abrasive in its sonic conviction and rhythmic repetition, but hooky enough to warrant some pensive head bobbing. With steadfast drums and vocals that are almost burdened by the weight of the guitar, “Blank Stare” creates a space for fixation, placing oblivion among scenes both familiar and estranged. There are a lot of bands trying their hand at the nostalgic grunge pop sound, but Solids stand outside of the cliché.
You probably know Vancouver rapper Matt Brevner from his Mad Child diss track and that’s pretty cool. But Brevner’s new single, “All We Know” pairs the usual rap showboating with an aspect of humility. “Getting money’s all that we know. Being broke won’t cut it. Riding ‘round with that blow, got my chain on, but I tucked it.” The track’s got a low key synth-laden beat, as is the current trend. But closer to the end, Brevner switches tone and it sounds something like Kid Cudi’s earlier, more psych-influenced material. Regardless, it’s a banger for sure.
Plazas is an electro-pop artist from Vancouver with a knack for ethereal sounds. Her latest single, “Silent Empire” is equally joyous and contemplative. Internet aesthetic in tow, Plazas communicates with a romanticized sense of space, using strange synth sounds to build a pillar of sentimental longing. “Take me to silent empires with you.” And it’s really well crafted. Vibrant, honest and wonderfully weird pop music. Check it out.
I’m really excited about this band and it’s pretty easy to understand the appeal. Pet Sun are from Hamilton/Toronto. According to their soundcloud, they’re a “deaatth garragge” band and I think that’s a pretty good descriptor to start from. “Web of Man” hits on all points of fuzzy pop gusto. Infectious riffs. Pervasive melodies. A proclivity for psychedelia and overall vibes. Check, check and check. Here, listen for yourself.
Hydromorphone isn’t for the faint of heart. With vibes both spooky and similarly articulate, Vulva Culture plays music for the melancholic and spiritually charged. And it’s pretty powerful. Channeling the atmospheric voodoo of Canada’s east coast, the group speaks with wavering guitars, hesitant drums and beautiful vocal melodies. But it all comes together with a grain of dissonance; tempting and simultaneously combating a more direct sense of aggression. “Hydropomorphone” comes from their recent release through Craft Singles. Listen here.