Of Gentlemen and Cowards – “Don’t Say”
-I dig the up tempo style here. The guitar work is super clean, which allows the vocal to really soar on this track. Something about the full production (maybe it’s the tight harmonies on the chorus) makes this track feel familiar and fun. It’s the kind of track you can imagine singing loud while cruising down the road on a roadtrip. The lyrics will have you thinking about how to work harder in your relationships, but it’s inspiring in a “care free” mood.
The Man Who – “Down”
-If you’re a fan of pop indie rock, you really should be following The Man Who. The sound is big time production with absolutely killer lead vocal. The whole composition feels like what modern rock should be. The lyrics are a little bluesy, about feeling hurt and moving on. The sense of movement in the track is really cool, getting me dancing on every listen. I could definitely vibe out to this band on future tracks.
Sam Fender – “Will we talk?”
-I guess when your name is Fender, you have to play electric guitar. If I ever get to interview him… actually I probably wouldn’t say anything about it. It’s probably a tired joke by this point. Anyways, with this track we get to hear some U2-esque vocal energy combined with some contemplative lyrical work. It’s an intriguing “rock” sound that we rarely hear in modern rock. The solo performance is exquisite. I’ll be watching for Fender in the future.
George Ogilvie – “Tremosine”
-I’ve actually never heard of a tremosine. I wonder if it has anything to do with a limosine? Anyways, the song is a repeated lyric of the words “I’ve never loved forever.” It’s a sad, bluesy rock tune that’s sure to speak to some folks. We’re a fan of Ogilvie’s sincerity and authenticity in his writing. In a world with a lot of glitz and glamour (and wayyy too much synth), it’s nice to hear someone write expressive lyrics with experimental guitar melodies that call us to reflection.
Didirri – “Blue Mood Rising”
-If you’re looking for some chill indie rock, Didirri should make your short list. I appreciate the lyrical play “blue mood” rather than “blue moon.” If you’ve ever struggled with anxiety or “the blues” you will definitely connect with that feeling when you can feel it coming on. What I dig most about the track is that it seems to capture the sense of hope – the “we can get through this” – perspective right before the gloom sets in. I dig the optimistic energy on the chorus in particular. I’m always a sucker for vocal harmonies, but the mix of grungy sincerity with evocative lyrics makes this a truly standout rock tune for me this year.