Best New Rock – Hampi, Merrymount!, LOWMEN, Lupis

We were grabbed by the sonic fury of Big Love, the new single from Hampi.  Crashing out the gate with a big immersive wash of hazy guitars and noisy textured layers, Big Love is captivating.  The vocals are blended into the noise-scape with a distorted effected presence, adding to the collective musical machinery developed by the songs sound design. 

In the spirit of MBV its noisy but gorgeous, encapsulating a melody beneath the static and haze.  The beauty breaks through the madness like the conceptual Big Love beneath the songs acquired lyrical meaning.  A loud anthem to fight against the crowded infiltration and noise of modern society, with all its expectations and trivial redundancies.  That’s how it made us feel, that’s why we love it. 

Hear Big Love now on our Best New Rock Playlist

Italian based rockers merrymount! caught our attention with their new single The State I’m In.  A clever composition, slightly unconventional in its movement with enough familiarity to connect it to its influences.  That’s what draws us to it, the compositional surprise and subtle variation that separates it from the pack, offering the band personality and reverence.  

Tasteful licks evolve beneath a crashing drum performance, bombarding the threat of mellow with its burgeoning presence, pulling the band along with him into the chaos.  To think the first mix had a folkish acoustic mood.  The drummer surely got a hold of it.  He injects a passionate energy needed to bring a crowd to its feet, offering some contrast to the serene melodies above.  The band rises in tandem, as the vocalist grows in passion and angst as the song evolves.  The songs spiritual underlay recalls 80s U2 updated with an indie sensibility known to Kings of Leon and some of the unfiltered angst akin to Car Seat Headrest.  We can dig it. 

Hold on and jump in, The State I’m In is currently featured on our Best New Rock Playlist. 

LOWMEN are catchy on their recent Secret.  This relentless jam pumps out the gate, featuring a guitar first design with masterful tone.  Sonic treats rise to the surface as the song evolves, uprooting sweet inflections of chiming pianos and organs.  Melodic clues tie this writing to Yacht Rock or even groovy glam era Bowie, with the updated indie rock appeal of Queens of the Stone Age.  It’s an infectious contrast that teases nostalgia without fully stepping into the association.  

The band gracefully dedicated this jam to anyone with a Secret to keep, however, the secret is out on this buzz worthy project.  Having made their festival debut at BBC 6, LOWMEN are building buzz with an eclectic nature meant for the festival circuit.  With 3 more singles due out in the coming months, the stage is set for a big 2023.  Secret delivers, adding big expectations to follow.  LOWMEN cast a wide stylistic net, bringing innovative songwriting in an indie rock package.  

Hear Secret now on our Best New Rock Playlist

The true legacy of grunge lives on in Lupis.  The Rochester trio does it proper on their recent Mealworm.  It’s not just the signature snarl, it’s also the riff and collective arrangement.  In the spirit of Cobain this is sneaky smart songwriting, so much so that it could pass as a long lost Nirvana bootleg.  Nailing that gritty vocal in the chorus, the verse section gives Lupis away, but its better not to to be overt.  

Wake up and realize that Nirvana is now 30 plus years ago.  Lupis are purveyors of that sound, badly needed with the threat of commercial polish invading every segment of Rock.  The new generation needs to know what grunge really feels like.  It’s not about a shirt at Target.  Maybe it’s about fury, angst, frustration, and non conformity.  Musically, it definitely bridges the gap between the Replacements and Fugazi.  Lupis does it right.

Hear Mealworm now on our Best New Rock Playlist.  


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