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HAIM - "The Wire"
Sure, I buy into Haim’s “The Wire”. It’s slick and catchy in a Top 40, supermarket loop sorta way, and not in a "please get this out of my head I want to murder somebody" sort way. But I’m not the only one to notice that its content is a little light, full of common turns of phrase that don’t quite make it, including the sort of confusing sports metaphor of the title. (What did she fumble at the wire, again? Faking affection?) But there's been movement for years towards technical precision as something to strive for in what we're still kinda calling "indie rock," and the best-made of it does go down incredibly easy.
Magik Markers - "Young"
Priests - "Radiation"
That said, there’s still gotta be room in anything we call an underground for things that'll get stuck in your throat. Cue these two insta-obscurities (Priests mainly put out cassettes w/ no offered downloads, and this Magik Markers song exists, gasp, NOWHERE online) that come from different ends of rebellious youth. Markers’ Elisa Ambrogio sounds wise but slightly tired, relaxed for discovering that life’s long arc keeps bringing chances. Alternately, Priests' Katie Allen Greer has so much energy that she almost convinces you that you could solve all the world’s problems instantly if you just yell at them with enough conviction.