Caleb’s Weekly Favorites – Mcclendon, Blueburst, Melonyx, The Revelator, LEUS, American Trappist, Junior Bill, Derde Verde

Mcclendon – “Loving For A Season”

Mcclendon’s latest single, “Loving for a Season,” is a mesmerizing soft rock ballad that takes listeners on a journey through the dissolution of a relationship that was never meant to last. With hauntingly beautiful analog synth brass and granular ambience, Mcclendon creates an otherworldly atmosphere that perfectly captures the bittersweet nature of love lost. The big stadium rock drums and powerful tenor sax tones round out the instrumentation, creating a sound that is both nostalgic and futuristic.

What is truly impressive about “Loving for a Season” is that it was written and recorded in just 90 minutes via text message .wav files between Mcclendon and co-writer and co-producer Tommy Champion. Despite this spontaneous creation, the song feels meticulously crafted and deeply personal. Mcclendon’s unique vocal layering techniques are on full display, showcasing his talent for creating intricate harmonies that take the listener’s breath away.

As an artist, Mcclendon is constantly pushing the boundaries of what indie rock can be. His music is a blend of genres that perfectly balances darkness and light. He draws inspiration from his Oklahoma roots and his experience touring with his band, but he is always looking to expand his sound. His forthcoming debut album, “The Garden,” is a testament to this desire for growth. Collaborating with Tommy Champion, Mcclendon has created a record that weaves in and out of different sonic territories, from dark indie psychedelia to synth-laden rock. “Loving for a Season” is just a taste of what’s to come, and it’s clear that Mcclendon is an artist to watch in the years to come.

Blueburst – “Supernova”

Blueburst’s second single, “Supernova,” is a guitar-based alt-rock track that encourages listeners to seize the day. The brainchild of Craig Douglas Miller, who’s releasing a debut album at the age of 50, Blueburst has found a trusted mentor and collaborator in guitarist Marty Willson-Piper (The Church, Noctorum). The result is a sound rooted in post-punk but with a timeless feel that alternately crunches, chimes, jangles, and pounds.

With lyrics that remind us that “no one gets out alive,” Miller urges us to grab life with both hands and create memories that will last. He laments that half a century has gone by without much to show for it, but he’s not done yet. Miller doesn’t place his hope in a phony afterlife, but he wants to stick around and see how it all ends. In the end, he’s alive, and that’s what matters.

“Supernova” is an uplifting and energetic romp that will have listeners tapping their feet and nodding along. Miller’s gritty vocals blend perfectly with the pulsing rhythm section, and the guitar work is nothing short of outstanding. This is alt-rock at its finest, and Blueburst is a band that should definitely be on your radar. With more new singles and live performances from Miller beginning in March and a full LP to come in the fall of 2023, we can’t wait to see what else this talented artist has in store.

Melonyx – “At The Door”

Melonyx’s latest single, “At The Door,” is a sultry and soulful tune that invites you to leave your ego behind and embrace love. The track is part of their upcoming debut album, “Soul Glow,” and follows their successful EP, “Black Elixir.” The Nottingham-based duo, Georgia Copeland and Nadia Latoya, bring their unique blend of Neo-Soul, Hip Hop, and Lovers Rock to create a heartfelt and memorable track.

“At The Door” features the Lover’s Rock riddim, which adds a groovy and laid-back vibe to the song. The vocal hooks and harmonies reinforce the message behind the track, encouraging reconciliation and surrendering to unquenchable love and attraction. Melonyx delivers their invitation to embrace love with precision and conviction, leaving no room for misinterpretation.

“Soul Glow” is a manifestation of the growth and evolution of Melonyx, drawing on influences from Hip Hop, Neo Soul, and Lovers Rock. The release serves as a mantra, reminding the duo of their worth, shedding light on the high value, power, and energy of Black women. Melonyx’s music has received support from a variety of sources, including Jamz Supernova, Craig Charles, Jazz FM, and Bandcamp Weekly. Their upcoming album is highly anticipated, and “At The Door” proves that Melonyx is a force to be reckoned with in the music world.

Overall, “At The Door” is an excellent showcase of Melonyx’s talents, delivering a powerful message of love and reconciliation through their unique blend of Neo-Soul, Hip Hop, and Lovers Rock. The track is a perfect introduction to their upcoming album, “Soul Glow,” which promises to be a powerful and unforgettable release. With their exceptional vocals, thoughtful lyrics, and infectious grooves, Melonyx is sure to become a household name in the world of music.

The Revelator – “Carousel”

The Revelator’s latest single, “Carousel,” is a captivating rocker that pulls listeners in with its lush grooves and honest, ardent lyrics. The track is a study in contrasts, seamlessly balancing vulnerability with exhilaration as the band treads on new territory. In “Carousel,” the band lays bare the anguish and heartache of a post-breakup haze, making it feel like Groundhog Day. But through it all, The Revelator’s warm harmonies provide a cathartic release that is both heartrending and mesmerizing.

Lyrically, “Carousel” is a poignant exploration of love lost and the lingering pain that comes with it. Lines like “Did all that time mean anything / If all that’s still around is pain?” and “Every breath is a heart attack / But my love will grow back” are heart-wrenching in their honesty and rawness. The chorus, with its repeated refrain of “My heart rides a carousel / When it stops, God I can’t tell,” is hauntingly beautiful, perfectly capturing the rollercoaster of emotions that comes with heartbreak.

Overall, “Carousel” is an excellent addition to The Revelator’s growing discography. The band has managed to create a track that is simultaneously tender and powerful, intimate and expansive. With its lush grooves and honest, ardent lyrics, “Carousel” is a masterclass in heart-wrenching rock music that will leave listeners both moved and mesmerized.

LEUS – “Modern Preacher”

LEUS, a Tel-Aviv-based LGBTQ indie artist, has made a stunning debut with her single “Modern Preacher”. With her powerful vocals and introspective lyrics, she explores themes of unorthodox gender roles and the pain of dreams that come true in the worst way possible. Drawing inspiration from Alternative 00’s female leads such as Florence Welch and Fiona Apple, LEUS has combined those sounds with pensive guitar lines and production references that draw from Arctic Monkeys ballads, early Lana del Rey, and Lorde. The result is a captivating, haunting track that leaves a deep impression on the listener.

The music video for “Modern Preacher” is a masterpiece of visual storytelling, depicting a desperate quest in search of release and catharsis, only to end up repeating the same scene again. Shot in the Ramon crater with a budget of under a thousand dollars, the video perfectly complements the song’s powerful message. It’s a testament to LEUS’s creativity and passion for her art, and it’s clear that she is a rising star in the music industry.

The lyrics of “Modern Preacher” are raw and emotional, exploring the pain of unrequited love and the struggles of being true to oneself. With lines like “With our backs against the wall, we’re making other kinds of love” and “I can dare to dream, and you can dare your fears”, LEUS paints a vivid picture of a love that is both intense and unattainable. It’s a heartbreaking song that will resonate with anyone who has ever experienced the pain of unrequited love or the struggles of being true to oneself. Overall, “Modern Preacher” is a stunning debut from an incredibly talented artist, and we can’t wait to see what LEUS has in store for us in the future.

American Trappist – “Lamentations”

American Trappist’s “Lamentations” is a stirring lead single from the band’s upcoming album, Poison Reverse, set for release on June 9th, 2023. Bandleader Joe Michelini pours his heart out in the track, detailing his experiences of coming out to his partner, and the struggles and anxieties that come with such a monumental decision. “Anyone who grew up in the church and has already done this work can relate. I also had some anxiety about engaging with my full self as a non-binary person. I didn’t have answers. I wasn’t sure who I would be if I was really honest with myself. I’m still working on that” said Michelini along with the song release. The song’s melody is powerful, with sweeping strings and a driving rhythm section that carries Michelini’s raw and emotive vocals through the song’s ups and downs.

Michelini’s solo project, American Trappist, is a testament to his diverse musical upbringing, ranging from contemporary Christian music to the indie rock influences of Arcade Fire and My Morning Jacket. With “Lamentations,” he continues to showcase his unique blend of genres, combining strings and a full band sound with raw and intimate lyrics. Michelini’s experience is relatable to anyone who has had to confront their own identity and navigate the complexities of love and relationships.

Overall, “Lamentations” is a poignant and honest single that serves as a strong introduction to Poison Reverse. With Michelini’s songwriting and storytelling abilities, American Trappist has cemented their place as a band to watch in the indie rock scene. The upcoming album is sure to offer more of the same heartfelt lyrics and powerful melodies, and is not to be missed.

Junior Bill – “Teeth”

Junior Bill’s latest release, ‘Teeth’, is a stirring and soulful take on the melancholic realities of contemporary British society. The track offers a powerful commentary on the growing isolation and loneliness experienced by many elderly people, in a post-Brexit world that feels increasingly claustrophobic. The song’s central theme is introduced through the character of an elderly woman who is addicted to sweets, living a lonely life in a self-contained world where the only escape is through the national healthcare system.

Rob Nichols, the mastermind behind Junior Bill, showcases his skillful songwriting with poignant lyrics that are both immediate and profound. In the song’s chorus, Nichols sings about the urgent need for the country’s national healthcare, juxtaposing it with the character’s daily struggle with holes in her teeth. ‘Teeth’ also delves into themes of social isolation and the loneliness that comes with ageing, and the song’s bridge encapsulates this with the lines “Sitting up in my bedsit, I can see the children go running by. Every day they grow a little bit, as their independence dies”.

The track is accompanied by a charming stop-motion animated music video that perfectly captures the song’s essence. Shot in a toy-town style, the video features a cast of miniature characters living in a cul-de-sac, echoing the song’s central themes of isolation and confinement. Overall, ‘Teeth’ is a stirring and thought-provoking track that encapsulates the unique talents of Junior Bill, and Rob Nichols’ songwriting, with its unusual intellect and empathetic spirit.

Derde Verde – “Don’t Look Away”

Los Angeles-based indie rock band Derde Verde have returned with their first single “Don’t Look Away” from their upcoming sophomore album, Tug of War, set to release in June 2023. The trio, comprised of Dylan McKenzie (vocals/guitar), Jonathan Schwarz (bass), and Colin Woodford (drums), have crafted a powerful wake-up call with this new single. In the face of societal chaos and uncertainty, Derde Verde urges listeners to resist the urge to bury their heads in the sand and to stay present, aware, and alive in the center of the storm.

The song’s introspective lyrics capture the frustration and confusion that many experienced during the pandemic. McKenzie sings about the isolation and echo-chamber mentality that many fall victim to, but the band refuses to turn a blind eye to the chaos around them. The track’s driving rhythms, melodic soundscapes, and heartfelt songwriting perfectly embody Derde Verde’s bold new sound.

“Don’t Look Away” was recorded live in the studio with the band playing in one room, giving the record a pure and authentic feel. The trio’s chemistry is on full display, with Woodford’s drums adding a dynamic layer to the already impressive sonic landscape. The result is a captivating and urgent single that is sure to have listeners eagerly anticipating Tug of War.

In “Don’t Look Away,” Derde Verde reminds us that when the walls start closing in, there’s no more running to quiet corners. We must confront the chaos head-on, and the band’s powerful new single serves as a call to action. With a release show in Los Angeles set for June 16th, this is just the beginning for Derde Verde, and we can’t wait to hear what else they have in store.

Leave a Reply