New Release Friday: HAUS Music, Ryan Svendsen, Jesse Jo Stark, Cara Hammond, Joe Garvey, The Millennial Club, The Little Miss, The Fey

Happy official Summer everyone! To kick off this most glorious season, we have a bevy of brand new summer related tracks for you to check out. Some of you may have come here because your favorite band shared this on social media, and please, do check their write up, but stick around for a while; if we have good enough taste to like your favorite band, I bet we have more out there for you too.

HAUS Music – “Rêves Ephémères”

Let’s get this started strong here with HAUS Music. This is another one of those songs we like to share where we don’t understand any of the lyrics (because we are stupid Americans) but the vibe of the song is so infectious that I don’t think I need to. Music is a universal language. Luckily I do have a little bit of background with what they are talking about:

“Mitchell says, “Rêves Ephémères translates to Ephemeral Dreams. It is an acknowledgment that stories that we invent for ourselves to carry us forward can and will just as often carry us somewhere we didn’t intend to go. For me it is a gentle reminder that happiness doesn’t come all at once at some point in the future; instead, it grows slowly over time. Don’t get trapped in a cycle of unhappiness thinking it can bring you anything but pain.”

There’s no doubt that this song is Ephemeral, whether you know every word that is being mentioned or not. I hope we can remember his message about happiness, and avoiding unhappiness throughout this summer.

Ryan Svendsen – “One Hundred Percent Ft. Jerome Thomas”

Have you figured out the beautiful thing about these lists yet? If you come in for one band, of a certain style, you may find another band of a completely different style to also add to your list. I think this song has to be on everyone’s list. Ryan Svendsen is a talented musician who has been featured on tracks by Christina Aguilera and Demi Lovato, and here you can see his creative vision taking shape under his own direction. I have to say, it’s gorgeous. Like all the songs in this list, it is absolutely perfect summer music, and luckily Ryan released this just in time for the first day of summer. Let me encourage anyone who likes horns to go check out Ryan’s back discography. It’s perfect for chilling out, background for work, or a party. It’s multifarious.

 

Jesse Jo Stark – “Dandelion”

The first thing I thought when I heard this song was how anyone who likes Lana Del Rey will almost certainly get a kick out of Jesse Jo Stark. They have similar vocal styles, and musical accompaniment. With this song, Jesse Jo Stark sings about loving something that you shouldn’t, and how complicated that quickly gets. Anyone got any theories on the title? I mean obviously Dandelions are a nice yellow flower, but I also tend to think of the seed heads, and how quickly they can blow away. Maybe this relationship is more like the latter?

Cara Hammond – “How I Feel”

How about this amazing bluesy single from Cara Hammond? This is the first song off new EP called Nice Girl, coming out in the fall. When asked about the song Cara describes it as: “How I Feel is a very relatable song about love, loss and nostalgia,” explains Cara “I think the track picks up on those little details and memories which are present in all types of relationships, making it a very powerful song” I can certainly hear that. There is a  mention of going out to bars, just hoping to see someone and ask how they are, and a lot of that terrible feeling after breaking up with someone that was once important, and no longer feeling very important to them. Really heart wrenching stuff, wrapped in a beautifully sung package.

 

Joe Garvey – “What Your Time Is Worth”

Joe Garvey asks us an important question with this smooth funk/pop song: “Do you know what your time is worth?” He begs us to consider how quickly the time passes, even a nice 80 year life is too short. In an age of increasing technology, distraction, and hustle and bustle, it seems that time isn’t what it used to be. Are you using yours the way you want to? Are you wasting days? I read once that we have about 4500 days worth of free time, meaning not work, not sleep, etc. That’s a disturbingly low number. Do you know what your time is worth?

 

The Millennial Club – “Santa Barbara”

This track is the perfect summer track. It has the perfect amount of groove to it; it even has a little bit of a California Dre whine going in the background. According to their promo materials: “At an early age, The Millennial Club has managed to blend dance-inspired 80’s pop, beat-driven 90’s R&B, and emotional love-centered lyricism to shape their original Southern California sound.” I would say that says it better than I can. These guys are on the rise, and I could even see them breaking into a top 40 style market eventually. They mix everything I love about summer into one convenient package.

The Little Miss – “American Dream”

Usually I like to get into the lyrics and try to dissect them, put my own spin on the song, etc. This song is too important to not get the words straight from the artist’s mouth. I will say this though, the irony is something that you can taste in this song, and it doesn’t taste like apple pie. The American Dream is an afterthought, a delusion that people once had, a book that you never got around to reading, collecting dust in the attic. I think it should be, at least. The thought that the American Dream has to be this perfect series of check boxes is just a way to sell more ranch style homes and Coke.

“I wrote ‘American Dream’ at a time when the tension in our country felt palpable. This was five years ago. Now, seemingly more divided than ever, I questioned whether or not I should release a song that sounds so blindly idealistic. To be clear, “American Dream” is not an endorsement of this country as it stands now. I don’t think that it is unpatriotic to think that we can do better than this. The American Dream, as it has been fed to us – Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness – has not delivered on its promises for many (if not most of us). So, while the song yearns for this made-up, sepia-toned time that never existed, it notes exactly that: that it never existed. We’re enchanted by our own, but very limited folklore – the pioneers, the Wild West, the civil war, the nuclear family, the moon landing, etc. We have romantic notions about who we are and who we’ve been, and it is tempting, for all of us, to want to wear those rose-colored glasses. But in order to become better, and in order to progress, we need to take off the glasses and take a good look in the mirror. We all want the same thing: to feel proud of the country we call home – we just need to accept the fact that it might be healthier to learn from our history rather than glamorize it. The lives of so many depend on it.”

 

The Fey – Contender

What is this?!? I seriously have no idea. It blends so many different genres into one crazy rollercoaster, and I loved every second of the ride. I read the bands description of their sound, and it reads as follows: “Dominantly a new age American rock-soul-r&b band, The Fey, also expresses a touch of the contemporary vibes of hip-hop and pop.” As a guy who listens to over 20 new bands a day, when you read a statement like that, you think, “Yeah, okay. Which part do you do well, though?” Most of the time it’s like a restaurant that has 50 menu items, and all of them are average. This is not most of the time. These guys know who they are, and they do rock, soul, r&b, hip-hop, and pop equally well. With strong guitar riffs and organs, smooth vocal runs, and a nice hip-hop verse, The Fey is the true definition of a multi-genre group.

 

-Caleb and Seth

 

As always, check out all of these tracks and more on our June Spotify Playlist. 

Video of the Day: Golan “Rocket Love (feat. Island Chain)”

I just found a song for your summer music playlist! Check out this amazing video from Golan. I’m most struck by how impressive the cinematography and direction of this video is. The wide angle shots of a beautiful beach are immediately striking. The lonely setting of the main protagonist sitting the edge of an empty rooftop pool  is eerie and beautifully barren. Another thing I really loved is that we see the protagonist carrying a video camera around, and we sometimes get some old school 90s VHS shots where we can look through her eyes directly.

I think there is still a lot to unpack with this video, and the song itself, and I would love to hear from you guys what you think in the comments. It should give anyone who’s worked a summer job in a beach town some intense nostalgia, and it captures a level of early 20s angst through visuals that I can’t even fully express because it’s more emotional than logical.

-Caleb

Want to hear more music? Check out our June TOTD Spotify playlist here. 

 

TOTD: Nick Ralg “It’s a Life”

When songs come along like this one, it makes me pause for a minute. Here at B-Side Guys, we try not to prescribe to a certain genre when picking out who we want to feature on the show, but obviously what styles of music we enjoy reflects what we feature on the blog. As a big singer-songwriter fan, I always listen to the song a few times to decide if it’s just something that I enjoy, or is something that objectively has something to offer people no matter what they listen to. This song has a story for everyone.

Nick Ralg has a vulnerable voice that sings this song like only a person who’s been through this situation before can sing it. You feel the emotion dripping from every word as he tells this ghost of a past love that even though he imagined them happy together in this town with the 2.5 kids and the white picket fence, but if she isn’t happy, she needs to go find her happiness. That’s honestly what love is. It’s more than butterflies and googly eyes; it’s sacrificing your happiness for theirs.

A tough song to write, Nick lays out his life so that everyone can see, and brings together a song that showcases his unique timbre and his unfortunate situation in perfect harmony.

Video of the Day: Jungle Youth – “Don’t Do It”

I love how strong this song starts. “I refuse to be another one of your mistakes.” And it keeps that strength throughout the whole song. The vocals really hammer home that defiance. As for the video itself, it follows along 3 people (the band members I believe, but I don’t know if we can assume they are playing themselves) as they hang out doing fun young people things, like exploring in nature, and various urban settings, as well and driving around and hanging out. There seems to be somewhat of a subtle love triangle that forms throughout the video, with the two guys both seeming to enjoy flirting with the girl, but one guy seems to break through and hold her hand, put his arm around her, etc. Eventually, when something goes wrong with the car, the two guys get in a fight. It really reminds me a lot of how these tiny jealousies, if unchecked, can build until they explode. I love the subtle build and the rich imagery of the entire video.

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Jungle Youth is a young band from Quebec City that was born out of a common love for music. In March 2018, the band emerges from the darkness by releasing their version of Loud’s “Toutes les femmes savent danser”. The cover rapidly reaches 2000 views in less than a week and gains media attention by being featured in Le Journal de Québecand on the website of CKOI 96.0. Refusing to identify to one style of music in particular, Jungle Youth projects a modern yet retro sound that combines elements that are Pop, Rock and Indie all at the same time.

 

-Caleb

Want more music? Listen to Jungle Youth and all our June artists on this Spotify playlist. 

Don’t forget to check out our latest podcast episode: Ep. 13 Bad Luck

 

Mid Day Music Blast: Caroline Lazar “Georgia”

 

Don’t forget to support the artist on bandcamp too!

I love how analog this song sounds. It really sounds like your favorite vinyl that you’ve played so many times that there are a few clicks and distortions, but that really adds to the flavor of the song. One of my favorite elements of the song, as someone from the small town south, is the crickets playing the background. It makes me so nostalgic for summer nights where their sounds are the orchestra to playing tag, hide and seek, catching fireflies, etc.

“Why am I looking for you looking for someone else

Bending over backwards to see if you are kissing to tell,

chapped lips soaked in red wine,

maybe it’s the last time.”

 

What a strong start to the song lyrically. It has all of those elements that I mentioned before of the nostalgia of young love, and it’s so relatable. Who hasn’t been caught up with someone and wondered about the intentions, wondered if it was actually going to go anywhere? I really can’t say enough good things about this song. Do yourself a favor and add it to all your playlists. We already added it to ours.

-Caleb

 

Don’t forget to check out the thing that started this whole media empire (or small village): The B-Side Guys Podcast 

TOTD: Jesse Daniel “Gracie Henrietta”

 

It’s Friday night! Are you guys partying? The second you hit a lull and need a pick me up, throw this song on the house playlist to part like it’s 1955 (but now you have MDMA and Tinder). I really can’t get enough of this song. Whoever is playing the piano is absolutely ripping!

 

“Jesse Daniel’s self-titled debut album sounds both fresh and familiar from beginning to end. Pairing classic country styling with honest and compelling lyrics, Jesse’s album plays like an old favorite with a twist that is both edgy and uniquely his own.”

– Zach Taylor, Raised Rowdy

I really couldn’t agree more with this quote from Jesse’s website. When I read a bit about Jesse on his website, it seems that he has a deeply American story to tell, full of broken families, picking yourself up by the bootstraps, homesteading, heart break, and so much more. If you are tired of pop-country that you hear on the radio, but want some intellectual twang in your life, you can’t go wrong with Jesse Daniel.

 

-Caleb

 

Video of the Day: Woolbright – “Symbiotic Harmony”

 

It’s full blown summer here, and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than this super fun video from Woolbright! The song itself is so good, but the video just makes me feel nostalgic and want to go play with nerf guns right now. During that round, don’t miss the major twist, it’s almost like Game of Thrones or something.

That’s before we even get to them settling loose on an arcade. Any bands out there trying to shoot a music video on a budget? Take notes from this one. It’s cheap, it’s fun, it looks good, and it doesn’t take itself too seriously. What a great video on this sunny Thursday afternoon.

Want to support them further? Go check them out on bandcamp. 

 

-Caleb

 

Video of the Day: Kensington Road // White Noise

 

Good afternoon guys! Are you feeling the Tuesday after a long weekend blues? I have just the cure! Check out this video and tell me what you think about it. I love the black and white aesthetic, which definitely fits the title and the vibe of the song. I particularly like when the girl first notices the second version of herself in the room, and also the mirror scenes.

There seems to be some sort of moral pondering going on with both of the characters in this hotel room. And then we have the singer overlooking the whole thing and singing AT both characters. My assessment is there is potentially cheating happening, and the two cheaters are feeling the weight of the guilt of the person being cheated on? Or maybe not that at all, let us know what you think in the comments below. And go check out more from Kensington Road right here. 

 

-Caleb