Category Archives: Songs of the Week

Songs of the Week: July 14, 2014

jenny lewis

Each week, Faint Uproar offers up our picks for the five best newly released songs. Stream them and read our commentary below:

The Rural Alberta Advantage – “Terrified”

Is there a band more Canadian than the Rural Alberta Advantage currently in existence? Likely not. They’ve got that crunchy Canadian indie rock sound, and their new single, “Terrified”, is also an excellent showcase of the band’s songwriting talents. Lead singer Nils Edenloff’s nasal squawk might not be for everyone, but it certainly goes nicely with the band’s propulsive guitars and militant percussion.

Matt Berninger & Andrew Bird – “A Lyke Wake Dirge”

The vaguely operatic voices of Andrew Bird and The National’s Matt Berninger join forces for this cover of a traditional English folk song, recorded for the soundtrack of AMC’s Turn. It’s extremely folky and morose, which suits both Bird and Berninger beautifully, and while it’s not going to become your go-to summer jam, those looking for something a little bit somber will likely eat up the somber interplay between Bird and Berninger’s voices.

(For some reason, the video has been removed from YouTube, but you can still check out a stream of the song over on Tumblr.)

Interpol – “All the Rage Back Home”

There was a time – probably in 2005, to be exact – where people got pretty excited about Interpol. They were the cool NYC band after The Strokes were the cool NYC band and just before ten thousand other Brooklyn bands became the cool NYC band for a week. But while Turn on the Bright Lights and Antics were and still are pretty great albums, the band’s work in the past decade has been less than inspiring. This new single – from the forthcoming El Pintor – is a decent indication that they band still has some juice left in them. The morosely chiming guitar and woozy Paul Banks croon is back in full force, and “All the Rage Back Home” is the kind of chugging single Interpol needed to release to re-pique people’s interest.

 Jenny Lewis – “The Voyager”

Excitement has been building for Jenny Lewis’ upcoming solo album, and this latest sample off the album certainly suggests that the optimism is warranted. Backed by lush strings and a decidedly retro feel, Lewis croons about the “voyager” that’s within all of us. She uses some beautiful, unexpected facets of her voice, showcasing both a strength and an airiness that are captivating.

 Tweedy – “Wait For Love”

For those who don’t know, Tweedy is the new side project of Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy that includes his 18-year-old son, Spencer, on drums. “Wait For Love” is pretty much as low-key and understatedly pretty as you’d expect from a Jeff Tweedy project. It feels a little meandering, but it’s just too undeniably pleasant to really fault. There’s something weirdly satisfying about watching Jeff Tweedy fall so comfortably and publicly into the “mellow middle-aged dad” role.

Songs of the Week: July 6, 2014

ryan adams

Each week, Faint Uproar offers up our picks for the five best newly released songs. Stream them and read our commentary below:

Ryan Adams – “Gimme Something Good”

So this was one of those rare and wonderful weeks where a bunch of musicians I really like all released new material. Among them is Ryan Adams, who also announced the upcoming release of his 14th studio album (out September 9). “Gimme Something Good” will kick off the album, and it suggests a return to Adams’ plugged-in, more rock-influenced sound. From the opening notes, it sounds an awful lot like Tom Petty, but that’s certainly not a bad fit for Adams. Here, he proves that he’s still more than capable of writing one hell of a catchy hook.

Spoon – “Do You”

Speaking of catchy, Spoon hasn’t sounded this good since their excellent, poppy 2007 album, Ga Ga Ga Ga Ga. “Do You” is lively and fun, showing us that Brit Daniel’s signature yowl and the band’s songwriting chops are both still in fine form. We’ll get to see the full force of that soon, when they release their new album, They Want My Soul, on August 5. In the meantime, “Do You” feels like a perfect summer entry, inviting listeners to shimmy along while still packing a wallop.

Bon Iver – “Heavenly Father”

Justin Vernon is a perpetually busy guy, but this is the first new material we’ve heard under the title of his Bon Iver project since 2011. “Heavenly Father” is on the soundtrack for Zach Braff’s new movie, Wish I Was Here, and if nothing else, Braff is assembling some pretty fantastic music for his flick. “Heavenly Father” finds Vernon singing in a lower octave and a fuller voice than usual, which in my opinion is his sweet spot. Vernon rarely disappoints, and hopefully this is a hint that more Bon Iver material is just around the corner.

Titus Andronicus – “Stranded (On My Own)”

Patrick Stickles spoke openly about his personal struggles when he appeared on Marc Maron’s WTF podcast earlier in the year, and while it made for compelling listening, it also suggested that the future of Titus Andronicus was somewhat up in the air. Now, Stickles seems to be making steps to return to what he does so well, and “Stranded (On My Own)” is just as gritty, searing, and inviting as anything off Titus Andronicus’ phenomenal 2010 album, The Monitor.

Foxes In Fiction – “Shadow’s Song” (Feat. Owen Pallett)

Foxes in Fiction might be the least familiar name on this list to many, but by this point, Owen Pallett (who contributes some lovely, swooning strings on the track) has built quite the name for himself in the indie world. It’s a beautifully sombre collaboration, suggesting great things from Foxes in Fiction’s new album, Ontario Gothic (love the name), which will be out on September 23.

Songs of the Week: June 29, 2014

willis earl beal

Each Sunday, Faint Uproar offers up our picks for the week’s five best newly released songs. Stream them and read our commentary below:

The Delta Spirit – “From Now On”

I was a big fan of Delta Spirit’s 2012 self-titled LP, and on September 9, they’ll return with their fourth full-length, Into the Wide. They offered up the album’s first single, “From Now On”, last week and it’s an expectedly upbeat and fuzzed-up indie rock number. The drums pound, Matthew Vasquez’s voice sounds as scratchy as ever, and the chorus feels just as sweeping as you’d hope.

Cayetana – “Serious Things Are Stupid”

Angry girl bands have a long history of making kick-ass music, and Cayetana seems to be continuing the trend. “Serious Things Are Stupid” is a propulsive cut from their upcoming debut LP, Nervous Like Me, which will be out on August 26. It sounds a bit like a heavier Best Coast, bemoaning the addictive nature of a lover who won’t change. The racing chorus is enough to make it the perfect summer anthem for fed up ladies everywhere.

Woods – “Tomorrow’s Only Yesterday”

Hot off the release of their latest LP, With Light and With Love, Woods released the second half of their upcoming 7” single, the groovy “Tomorrow’s Only Yesterday”. The song doesn’t reinvent the psych-rock wheel, but it does have the kind of hook and groove to ensure that it’ll worm its way into your head after one listen.

Grimes – “Go”

Initially penned as a single for Rihanna (!), it perhaps makes sense that “Go” is one of Grimes’ most poppy offerings yet. It’s her first new material in a while, and it serves as a lovely showcase for Claire Boucher’s ethereal voice, as well as offering a pretty infectiously chorus. It’s probably better that this one didn’t go to Rihanna, after all.

Willis Earl Beal – “Traveling Eyes”

Having competed on The X-Factor and released an album through XL Recordings, Willis Earl Beal has certainly dabbled in the mainstream music industry. This might explain why he split from XL and now plans to self-release his next album, Experiments in Time (out August 8), on CDBaby. If “Traveling Eyes”, a sparse and slow-burning slice of folky soul, is any indication, Experiments in Time will certainly be worth seeking out.