Faintest Idea – Kill Em’ Dead
Review by: Gimpleg
Last week someone shared a post about a new music video on social media as I was scrolling before bed at 1 AM, and I almost scrolled past it, but instead I went back and clicked the link. The song had just released earlier that day from a British band I had never heard of- Faintest Idea. I clicked play, unsure of what to expect. What I didn’t expect was to be blown wide awake and going to stream every song that the band had written, and DMing the band as soon as the song was over to see if I could get an interview, but that is exactly what happened. I didn’t sleep until well after 3AM.
The song is a fast paced anti fascist punk/ ska song that references many of the recommended reading and listening lists for leftist ideology all strung together to tell the story of the working class rising up against false idols.
The intro and the horns at the beginning seemingly set the stage, but they fail to adequately prepare you for this song. The punk vocals and rhythm absolutely get you moving. The drums are incredible and if you’re not on your feet ready to riot, I don’t know why not. Then the sax comes in for the instrumental and completely changes the pace and absolutely crushes. I bought the whole digital discography after hearing this.
Coolie Ranx – Keep Fighting
Review by: Gimpleg
“Keep Fighting” is the third single from Coolie Ranx’s Days Gone By album. This is the debut album for Coolie Ranx solo project but far from his first work.
I’m blown away every time I hear this song. The album so far appears to be a ska reggae mix, but this song begins with some rock and roll rhythms before dropping into a more traditional ska beat and a later guitar solo in this song shows that there are definitely rock influences to add into his ska and reggae styles. Coolie Ranx brings his musical and his lived experiences together as he sings “I’m just tryna keep a roof over my head, I ain’t trying to slave until Im dead…” beginning a story about survival in a late stage capitalist hellscape that is both heartbreaking and uplifting. The accompanying video for the song helps give a visual narration to the story that is being told, putting a face to the message in a powerful way, but the song does not need the visual assistance. This song begs us to never give up, and to keep fighting.
While this song isn’t necessarily about mental health crisis, for anyone who is finding it difficult to “Keep Fighting” here in the US there is a mental health crisis line, staffed 24/7. If you need help, call or text 988 any time and be connected with a mental health professional. Please look into the services available in your country if you are outside the US.
Elizabeth Winterbourne – Evergreen
Elizabeth Winterbourne, who recently just played at New York Fashion Week, has returned with their newest single “Evergreen.” Winterbourne, who has synesthesia, writes with color adding another layer to her songwriting. Much like the album art, this song takes you on a journey. Whether you are in the concrete jungle, in the savannah, or in a lush forest “Evergreen” will be your traveling companion.
Elizabeth has described this song as “nostalgia and loss but also recovery and birth.” The instrumentation and Winterbourne’s vocals highlight just that. “Evergreen” by Winterbourne is monumental. Listening to it will allow you to finish that goal you’ve been procrastinating on or to reach the peak of the highest shelf in your local grocery store. It is epic in every sense of the word.
Katie Canning – Nonchalant
Following the release of “Laugh About it” Canning has returned with the sultry and soulful “Nonchalant.” Within the first twenty seconds of “Nonchalant” you will begin to vibe. Confidence you did not know you had (or have kept tucked away) will make itself known. Humans who may not deem themselves as attractive will find themselves shook when they are serenaded with this song from across the coffee shop on a Wednesday afternoon.
If you have been secretly (or subtly) lusting over a human being, this is the song for you.
Canning’s “Nonchalant” tells the story of humans who lust over another. Lust is a human emotion where you passionately desire to be with that person. If the other party feels the same way but that desire is not acted upon the lust grows stronger. The Neo-soul and alternative pop of this track beautifully compliments that lustful feeling.
Mustard recommends that if you are lusting over another human, make sure they feel the same way. Making moves without consent is inappropriate. You can receive consent by speaking with the party.
Josh Dare – Self Portrait
The fourth installment from Josh Dare “Self Portrait” is an absolute delight. One of Mustard’s goals is to learn more about humans. Dare’s “Self Portrait” is a character study of the artist themselves. While Mustard has never met Josh Dare personally this album allows the listener to better connect with the artist.
Truth be told, it is hard to choose a favorite song off this album as it flows effortlessly like a wave before it has breached land. “Right in Front of Me” featuring Chloe Moser which was released last week is a surf-rock anthem that will inspire you to order a Pina Colada and become acquaintances with the retirees at the bar.
While the album is generally cheerful it does have its moments of vulnerability. Tracks such as “Out of Reach” and “Sitting Out” highlight the complexities of Dare and humans.
What really elevates this album is the closer and title-track “Self Portrait.” At 17 minutes long “Self-Portrait ” is a tour de force of Dare’s musical talent. 17 Minutes sounds like a long time but with Dare’s talents the song feels like a breeze rather than a chore. There is not a dull moment within the 17 minutes.
Mustard believes Dare’s “Self Portrait” should be in your Album of The Year considerations.
The Sounds of Settling – Healing Failures
The Sounds of Settling, the solo project of Dr. Rob Bednarz, last week released their debut single “Healing Failures.” Bednarz does something really unique and uses their real life experience as a medical professional and turns into pop punk goodness. As a condiment Mustard has no experience with healthcare but they appreciate using what you know and channeling into an enjoyable tune such as this.
Humans have had an exhausting last few years. Bednarz has channeled this exhaustion into music as a form of escape. Some humans discredit doctors for what they do. Mustard does not believe that is right.
Another thing that Mustard appreciates about this song is its name. Sometimes humans feel like they have failed because they got injured or sick. As a doctor, The Sounds of Settling can heal those thoughts of failure.
Mustard has not heard music from this perspective before and they look forward to seeing what else The Sounds of Settling has in their manilla folder.
Brainheart – Keep Me Falling Apart
“Keep Me Falling Apart” by Brainheart, a part of “The Strange Kids” EP is a pleasant listening experience. The vocals and instrumentation remind Mustard of the music from Netlix’s “I ❤ Arlo” series. The songs in that series provide hope, comfort, and a positive outlook. But so does “Keep Me Falling Apart.” Humans have this incredible ability to keep each other intact – even when they do not realize they are doing so.
Mustard recommends you treat your human ears to this wonderful tune.