Morning Commute: Small Words – “Darling”

Good morning B-Side Back Massagers (idk man, I’m running out of alliterative ideas). I have a really great indie/pop-punk style track from Small Words to share with you this morning. This song reminds me of the best parts of my late teens/early 20s. It captures the angst, the newly found freedom, and the cautious hope that I sometimes get nostalgia for now that I’m pushing 30. Let’s dive into the first verse and chorus:

“Darling, I am calling.
I’m locked outside
With someone else,
A fragment of my former self.
So darling, could you save me?
I’m not the type to ask for help,
But if you could I’ve never felt this way.
Lets get away.
I’m far too drunk to drive,
Do you think you could??
We took the back road
singing ladadadada”

  1. I appreciate this song advocating for not driving drunk.
  2. On a serious note, these lyrics perfectly capture that youth I was talking about before. Drunk, figuring out who you are, singing on back roads with friends (or more than friends), it’s really a beautiful nostalgic picture.

If you are looking for more from Small Words, this song is from an EP called For What It’s Worthless which you can find here: For What It’s Worthless.

 

Bio: Small Words is an energetic Indie-Rock band out of Indianapolis, IN.

With 2016’s “For What It’s Worthless” EP, the 5-piece quickly began making a name for themselves in the music scene.

Drawing influence from a myriad of genres, the band keeps the audience on their toes, and glued to their performance.

2019 will see the release of their new record, “Good Day, Bad Me”, recorded at The Lumberyard in Hammonton, NJ. (Produced, and mixed by Ace Enders, and Nik Bruzzese)

The album explores the struggles of addiction, grief, depression, and accepting one’s own mortality without spoon feeding you “it’s gonna be okay”’s. In these trying times we need to know that it’s okay to struggle, and no one needs to fight their demons alone.

 

– Caleb

Morning Commute: Edwin – “Uncontrollable Pride”

Edwin live.

Good morning B-Side Bandicoots (nah, that’s not it)! Before we talk about the song, go back to the :41 second mark and wince in fear with me one more time that Edwin was going to get his guitar wet for the shot. Okay. Are you back? Now let’s talk about this song. I don’t know about you guys, but I LOVE this song and video. I was sold from the first few frames. I love music videos that take a simple concept and just execute the hell out of it, and Edwin does exactly that with “Uncontrollable Pride.” I got so drawn in by the video and beautiful melody, that it took me a few times to pay attention to the lyrics, but luckily for you, I can point them out now, so you don’t miss how awesome they are:

“I was under pressure when the Devil told me what she thought.
Nothing made much sense and I said “Jesus, you sound just like God”
Will my life come at a cost, cause my money’s gone to rent?
What else would you want, to get my life back again?

Uncontrollable pride
Me and the Devil dining side by side
Uncontrollable pride
How much love will it take to make this right?”

That opening is so playfully witty, and yet deeply interesting at the same time. At first I thought maybe the Devil was telling him what “she”, as in some third party girl who the narrator was crushing on, thought. But the more I read it, I think the Devil is the she. And the Devil doesn’t make any sense, which makes her sound like God. I really can’t emphasize how cleverly worded that stanza is. It’s really a thing of beauty. The next verse explores the whole idea further:

“I was under pressure when the Devil came to speak to me
She said “You’re a fool for loving someone you don’t truly see”
How much would it cost, cause my hair is getting thin?
Well, what else would you want, cause my beauty’s at its end?”

So is the “someone you don’t truly see” also the Devil? Since the Devil doesn’t make much sense, and he and the Devil are dining side my side. It could be speaking about a third party girl, and I think both are interesting, but I can’t get over the idea of being in a dysfunctional relationship with the Devil just because it’s such an interesting concept to me. Either way though, it’s a great song that’s hiding an ambiguous poetry behind beautiful upbeat melodies. I really hope you enjoy it as much as I do. And Edwin, keep your guitar dry buddy.

“You Have No Idea, Man” EP available on Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/album/7AYZxQyhNgswFgKJ9ZaxwL?si=XUCVLGl5Q1mi6NmC3VXJbQ

Morning Commute: Leo James Conroy – “White Noise”

Image result for leo james conroy

 

Good morning B-Side Ballerinas! (nah, that one isn’t so good) Hope you guys are celebrating your Friday in style. Let’s get it started right with an excellent track from Leo James Conroy. The production on this track is so smooth. It has an analog feel from the very beginning with the excellent bass line that runs the entire song. As someone who tries to sing on occasion (poorly), I can’t help but be insanely jealous of a voice like Leo James Conroy has. It’s perfectly soulful in a way that reminds me a good bit of the lead singer of Kaleo mixed with like Jamie Cullum or someone. I think my favorite part is when everything drops out around 2:20 and then slowly builds itself back up with a background chorus, horns, and of course, that sweet sweet bass line. Let that bass line walk you right into the weekend, where of course, more music from us will be waiting.

Bio: White Noise is Leo James Conroy’s first single on his Debut EP, Plastic Chairs & Cigarette Fumes. Notable contributors to the record include drummer Russ Lawton (who has worked with Phish), background singer Sharlotte Gibson (who has collaborated with Whitney Houston and Stevie Wonder), and mastering engineer Barry Grint (who has worked with The Rolling Stones, David Bowie and The Beatles). “White Noise” was produced by Lyell Evans Roeder, and it was recorded in his studio in Los Angeles with additional recording in Vermont and Washington D.C.

LINKS:

https://www.instagram.com/leojamesconroy/

https://www.facebook.com/leojamesconroy/

http://www.digitaljournal.com/entertainment/music/leo-james-conroy-talks-new-single-white-noise-jeff-buckley/article/525736

Morning Commute: Favours – “In The Night”

Image result for favours band

Good morning B-Side Badasses! (oh, I like that one, that’s pretty good). I have an incredible song for you this morning. Their spotify numbers are mind blowing to me. This song only has 1,000 plays? What? Hopefully we can get those numbers up some today because I think everyone on the planet needs to hear this one. The band describes the track as: “‘In The Night’ is a ballad for the stuck ones in an unfulfilling cycle of repetition. It’s about escaping from the banality of the day and longing for the dreams that seem just out of reach.” Um…so…basically all of us in modern society no? I know it at least applies to me. One of my goals for 2019 is to dream bigger, and take some practical steps to achieve those dreams, so I appreciate this song this morning as a nice reminder of why it is important. So many of us let our lives drift by without trying to do anything to shake it up, or rock the boat, me included. Let’s reflect this morning, as we listen to this beautiful orchestrated synthy jam, on what parts of our lives we are just going through the motions on, and how we can shake ourselves out of that.

Links: Facebook / Instagram

Bio: Favours plays 80s and 90s influenced dark synth rock combining British new wave with modern dream pop influences. The band features female and male vocals using their lyrical identities to embody the narrative they croon about.

-Caleb

Morning Commute: Anderson Rocio – “Darkerside”

Image result for anderson rocio music

 

“You’re saving me, cause I can’t get back tonight
You’re holding me back from the darker side
On my own, on my own
On my own, on my own”

 

What a beautiful way to start off this morning. I’m really surprised I haven’t heard Anderson on the radio yet (granted I don’t listen too much to the radio). I really think she has the vocal chops and lyrical hooks to be an earworm for everyone in America (or the World, why not?). It’s got a really interesting look at interdependence in relationships. There definitely has to be a balance between being too independent, in which case you aren’t really in much of a relationship, but also you can be too codependent. But the best relationships mix these elements, and help us in our dark times, just like we help them in their dark times. It’s a really beautiful song and sentiment.

 

Don’t glance over this bio, it’s a pretty remarkable background.

Bio: Half Spanish, half American, Anderson was born in Italy but spent most of her formative years in England. At the age of 11 her family of five left to sail around the world on a 44ft Catamaran. Three years later they sailed into Auckland, New Zealand, where she calls home.

Classically trained in piano from the age of 6 (she had a portable piano on the boat), she continued to study Classical Piano and English at Otago University, completing a bachelor of Music in 2016.

Arriving to LA on a one way ticket back in February 2017, she began recording her EP in July. The first single DARKERSIDE was independently released 7th June 2018 with the full EP released by September.

She’s currently working on her sophomore EP and am signed to THINK Music Inc for Licensing.

 

-Caleb

Morning Commute: Snailmate – “On You”

Image result for snailmate

 

Good morning B-Side Enthusiasts! Man, we really need to give you guys a better nickname, any ideas? Shoot us a message on Facebook or something. Anyway, I have a great track for you to start off this Monday morning. It’s a really catchy song with some really fun synths that seems to have a lot more depth below the surface. Let’s dive into a little of the lyrics:

“Ok where do I start…
it was probably the laser beams blasting out of your eyes like you hated me.
Creating craters in my space you made my neighbors freak.
All the sudden I’m self conscious about the way I speak.
You said you can turn your gaslight off.
I no longer need it’s illumination to write songs.
I don’t feed off the accumulation of fights gone wrong like I used to so lose the abuse dude.”

So to me the song is reflecting on a dysfunctional relationship of some sort, and the narrator seems to be self consciously exploring the ways that they weren’t the best partner. The interesting thing to me is the “gaslighting” part, only because that seems to potentially complicate the rest of the song. Who is doing the gaslighting? If it is the narrator, then the song that follows is pretty straight forward, and the gaslighting is just one of the many things that the narrator is reflecting on about himself that he may have done wrong. If the partner was doing the gaslighting, then it becomes difficult to decipher the rest of the song. Is that narrator actually the one in the wrong in this relationship? Or have they just been made to feel that way because every fight or criticism turns it self around “on them.” Either way it’s a really interesting song with a really funky jam. I recommend you listen to it 20 more times and then tell me what you think.

Bio: Snailmate was formed by Kalen Lander and Ariel Monet in early 2015 in Phoenix, AZ. To date, the band has independently released 3 EPs (on tape and CD) one 7 inch vinyl split, one tape split and one full length album “Love in the Microwave” (digital distribution by OCML records) which together have amassed thousands of physical sales and Digital downloads and garnered praise from press outlets such as Phoenix New Times, Java Magazine, Rogue Valley Messenger, ABQ Free Press and more. The band’s self-booked touring began spring of 2015 and they haven’t stopped since. Snailmate has played clubs in every region of the country while also performing at SXSW, Evel Knievel days, UFO festival, multiple pride festivals, State fairs, Maximum Ames and Fog Fest.  The duo will continue touring the US, Canada, Mexico, Europe and more until they die.

 

-Caleb

 

Morning Commute: The Duskwhales – “Fight Back”

“Yet here we are stuck in this world
Oh it’s riddles in the dark
That keep us up as we toss and turn in
To God only know what

If you can’t fight back then I’ll fight back for ya
If you can’t fight back then I’ll fight back for ya
If you can’t fight back then I’ll fight back ”

Good morning and Happy Weekend! Are you looking for an inspirational story to start off 2019? Good, me too. First, check out this music video to get in the appropriate mood:

Alright, good. The song itself is so upbeat and creates a feeling of safety and warmth with the lyrics. Before I go much deeper, check out this interview from the artist, Chris Baker, before we move on, it’s only 5 minutes and I promise it’s worth your time:

Alright, at this point hopefully you are getting the inspirational story and message. The band describes the motivation behind this project as this: “This song was produced by a non-profit organization called Cancer Can Rock and written after the band’s drummer went through cancer treatment earlier this year. “Fight Back” is an anthem to fight back against cancer and a call to action to help those who can’t help themselves.”

I really like that this song is layered so deeply. On one hand, if you are struggling with something, hopefully it’s inspirational to you to make it through, but also, even if you aren’t struggling with something, I like that the song encourages us to find someone who is, and help them. We are all stuck on this rock hurtling through space together, and we only have each other. Make sure you do your part in making this rock better for someone else. I can’t think of a better way to start off a new year.

 

-Caleb