Roomrunner - "Weird"
Baltimore's Roomrunner gave us the best shot at reliving the summer of 1993 by releasing their Nirvana-blueprinted banger, Ideal Cities, at the end of May. On "Weird," though, the garbage disposal churn picks up an electrical charge. Its two and an half minutes constantly lurch forward, flailing towards the fall months ahead.
Mikal Cronin - "Shout It Out"
Cronin finds the intersection between summer elation and summer exhaustion, compacts both into a fist-pumping chorus ("Do I shout it out? Do I let it go? Do I even know what I'm waiting for?"), and ultimately allows a deceptively sunny melody to melt away the confusion.
Butter the Children - "Loose"
Cobbled together from bands of Brooklyn's recent past (specifically Sweet Bulbs, Night Manager, Fiasco and Le Rug), Butter the Children forge a revived appreciation of post-punk on their just-released True Crime EP. Appropriate for a song titled "Loose," frontwoman Inna Mkrtycheva sounds like she's falling through the sky, strands of her usually clear, streamlined voice unravelling as she barrels through the guitar noise. You should very much listen to it here.
Lorde - "The Love Club"
It can be difficult to gauge an artist's popularity within the often nearsighted indie-rock circle, even if the artist in question has garnered praise from wide-read publications like BuzzFeed, or New York Magazine, and is set to play two sold-out shows at Webster Hall. In case the big-name press rumblings washed over you, 16-year-old Kiwi songstress Lorde released an EP of five singles custom-made for summer this spring. Its title track airs a high schooler's frivolity ("I'm in a clique, but I want out") but with a voice far richer, and with a sense of conviction far too strong, to sound like it's coming from one. Her debut full-length, Pure Heroine, is due next month.
Wise Blood - "Rat"
After years of buildup, sound collagist Christopher Laufman released his debut full-length, Id, in June, sprawling his tight-knit compositions into woozier, deflated streams of consciousness. "AMC Loews Waterfront," with the line, "I'll be gone for about an hour or two, then I'll think about the bullshit that I have to do," may perfectly capitalize on summer laziness, but "Rat" hits harder, driving Laufman's soul-pop-hip-hop deeper into your head.
Cayucas - "High School Lover"
Bigfoot, Cayucas’ Secretly Canadian debut, came in late April—an ideal time for a batch of sunny pop songs to land in our laps, warming up walks to the subway and hinting at the pending seasonal switch. The single “High School Lover,” for one, sounded like school was already out for the summer. Lifting from Beck's most danceable tracks, a deep slap bass provides ample groove while a skedaddling melody makes it sound like a cat-and-mouse chase.