Tough On Fridays floored us with their new EP Overboard! A solid combination of pop punk and alternative rock, they are infectious and catchy while remaining slightly dark. There’s a melancholy, shoegaze style appeal to their songwriting. You can trace it all the way back to MBV and Smashing Pumpkins. Undeniably influenced by smart punk projects like Paramore and Brand New, they blend a lot of intention into Overboard! It kicks off with the trademark catchy design of the title track. These melodic syncopated offerings remind us of emo cult heroes Hey Mercedes.
The vibe gets heavy on the subsequent Covet. The dark melodic design, with an abstract slightly unfamiliar chord palette, reminds us of early Jimmy Eat World and the breakout record Static Prevails.
The band started out as an acoustic duo before growing into their current lineup. They update their original sound on the fantastic Lush (Reimagined). They bring a touch of 90s sensibility, conjuring memories of Gin Blossoms and early Foo Fighters. This is high praise! Tough On Fridays capture an elusive vibe elegantly. The singers know how to stretch the melodic fabric around chord heavy riffs. The band plays with a tight, fiery energy that pushes every piece forward. There are heavy doses of calculated syncopation, as every arrangement brings an element of surprise. Teamwork makes the dreamwork, and this trio knows how to keep the movements interesting.
Like Paramore and Chvches, Tough On Fridays features a tenacious female lead that rips into your heart with every emphatic hook. The entire EP features strong vocal contributions that cut through the heavy musical design. The male vocal on Covet is also notably fantastic. The band rips LIVE, and they’ve been gigging regularly. The entire EP slaps from front to back. Go see them in concert!
Get hooked with Lush (Reimagined) now on our Best New Rock Playlist
We got caught in the catchy, infectious charm of Rushing Lattice, the new single from Oh Lonesome Ana. An indie rock gem, its founders sound nurtured in the under-appreciated genius of post-emo projects like Promise Ring and Get Up Kids. Developed through the indie rock machine that produced conscious art groups like Wilco and Dawes, Oh Lonesome Ana bring a refreshing emo inspired trait to indie rock.
Besides just being a great freakin tune, Rushing Lattice is a crisp display of tone and texture. The guitars glow with tube tone warmth and just enough dirt to give their melodic writing personality. The drums sway around the imagined rhythm with sneaky inflection, occasionally confirming to the prescribed tempo before evolving out again. The rhythmic movements are seamless. The drummer brings an admirable natural sway with eclectic utility.
Every contribution is meaningful, brining melodic depth without devolving to means of overproduction. Even more, the vocal performance is probably the most impressive achievement. Clean, bold, and bare, the singer writes a melody that supports his finer attributes. He knows how to use his voice, how to lean into its raw qualities and find the right amount of feel to make it believable. He’s not trying to win American Idol, but he’s a proper Rock vocalist who doesn’t need to drench his voice in reverb to keep it listenable. And he delivers the song intelligibly. To seal the deal, the poetic alliterations and folding rhymes of the lyrics bring an intoxicating allure.
To cap it off, Rushing Lattice ends with a vamping jam that gives a taste of how they can evolve these groove LIVE. It’s a calling card to see these Sacramento gems in concert.
Get started with Rushing Lattice now on our Best New Rock Playlist
Scarlet Joy is a rare power trio with a captivating female lead. Scarlet brings star power. They don’t fight it. Their new single Lost At Sea opens with a solo vocal verse before the band comes in. The powerful shift brings an element of surprise.
Lost At Sea is our favorite kind of grunge rock. It is full of melodic appeal and enticing variation. The rhythm section hits hard, bringing energy and fire to this new classic sound. The contrast of the ethereal female siren gives the project ambiguity. It’s as if Sinead O’Connor or Florence Welsh is fronting Delta Spirit. There’s evidence of alternative influences like Foo Fighters and STP, but the indie sensibility shines through.
Lost at Sea is more of a modern update than a classic revival. Scarlet Joy are pushing Rock forward. It’s special to get chord heavy jams that keep you wanting more. It’s a combination of strong songwriting, tight execution, and a fantastic vocal.
The simple production of well placed harmonies keeps Lost At Sea true to its making. A bright offering in the progression of Rock, Lost At Sea should excite fans looking for a true alternative revival.
Enjoy Lost at Sea now on our Best New Rock Playlist
Chris Considine pens an emotional anthem with his new single Force Of Nature. The songwriting and catchy appeal are great, but its the vocal performance and inspiring lyrics that made this a new favorite. Full of passion and energy, he injects a lot of youth into the songs infectious chorus. With conviction he sings “You’re just a force of nature, everyone hates ya, nobody loves you anymore.” The statement stings with the awareness of someone whose been dragged through the new social machine. A song for a generation of kids who grew up under the onslaught of social media. Everyone’ s a critic, and friends love to hate.
Force of Nature is an anthem for the collateral kids, hearts of gold caught up in the superficiality of their generation. Considine weaves around the melodic structure with retro rock appeal. These vibes recall 80s Springsteen and the War On Drugs, but with a semblance of Brit Pop and the attitude of recent breakout Sam Fender.
Chris admits that the lyrics grew out of his own experiences with anxiety. When music is utilized as a creative outlet for personal struggles, great art happens. Force of Nature feels genuine, and every lyric is refreshingly relatable. It’s comforting to know that others share common difficult experiences, and Considine is a welcome young voice to bring this challenge to music.
Within the lyrics is a hidden treasure, the plight of an artist desperate for validation in a crowded scene. Wise enough to understand the saturation crisis, hungry enough to stay in the fight. It works for anyone whose ever taking a chance, or made a big controversial career move. Chris knows how the voices in your head try to take over. “They’ve been lying all this time, is that what you’re thinking?” Even the most successful people have to overcome this every day. Force Of Nature casts a wide lyrical net, it should appeal to anyone whose making moves, regardless of intention.
Enjoy Force Of Nature now on our Best New Rock Playlist