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New Music Radar

New Music Radar for October 11th, 2023:

The Simplicity – “SMOKIN’”

Charleston-based rock band The Simplicity released a new single, “SMOKIN,’” over the weekend. The track was recorded at The Space with Wolfgang Zimmerman and also includes Jim Rubush (The Psycodelics, Little Bird), Connor Hollifield (Hollifield), and Paul Chelmis (Human Resources). “Smokin’” shows the band fully committed to the grittiness that they do so well, this time with a dash of honky tonk attitude. Melodically jangly guitar howls as John Bias sings of being unable to give up cigarettes. You can picture yourself at the local watering hole, bar tar on your shoes, singing along to the raw-edged la-la-las in the chorus and pouring one out for all of your vices and addictions.

Contributed by Kate Bryan

The Simplicity’s “SMOKIN’” screams as a ballad to the grip of nicotine addiction: “But it’s too late to stop smokin’ now, five years under my belt there’s no stopping it now.” t’s a phrase more than a few of us can relate to. “SMOKIN’” was recorded at The Space with Wolfgang Zimmerman and is the second single from their upcoming record, with three more singles on the way. The track starts out acoustically-driven and transforms into an energetic, bluesy melody inspired by bands like The Rolling Stones and the Stooges. The incorporation of sing-along background vocals creates a teleportation effect for the listener to feel like they are listening live.  

The Simplicity will perform on the Charleston Pour House deck with Hollifield on November 18th, supporting Mo Lowda & The Humble and Illiterate Light!

Contributed by Sarah Grace Sherbondy

“SMOKIN'” on Spotify

#GxldApproved: CrucialBGR – “MR AMAZING”

CrucialBGR continues to his ‘flawless quotes’ with his new single release “MR AMAZING”. Chock-full of his cryptic lyricism and signature voluble delivery full of realism and self-assertions based on his overcoming and triumph against all odds. Dark synths and sinister piano loops creep throughout the beat and add a menacing feel to Crucial’s high energy, off-center, conversational flows. Stay tuned, I recently talked to the man himself and he’s assured that much more is in the works, from visuals to more projects!

Contributed by Thaddeus Adams

“Mr Amazing” on Spotify

Sufjan Stevens – Javelin

Folk singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens released his highly-anticipated new album, Javelin, on Friday, and it delivers everything that longtime fans of the artist could hope for: sweeping, otherworldly soundscapes, tender instrumentation, and thoroughly poetic lyrics. All this is rendered even more poignant with the knowledge that the album represents a tribute to Stevens’ partner, who passed away this year. While many of the tracks could have made it onto this playlist, I chose “So You Are Tired,” a piano ballad that builds into an emotive, atmospheric lament for the loss of a relationship.

On the playlist: “So You Are Tired”

Contributed by Kate Bryan

Javelin on Spotify

Young Mister – “Get Me”

One of the Carolinas’ most under-the-radar songwriters, Young Mister, dropped a new single last week called “Get Me”. Showcasing the artist’s knack for light, gentle songs that touch a nostalgic, emotional nerve, “Get Me” highlights having the strength, or stubbornness, to overcome trouble within a long-term relationship. The hook, “Who’s gonna get me if you don’t?”, serves as a reminder of the value of a deep connection during a difficult time, when one might consider throwing the whole thing away.

Contributed by Chris Huber

“Get Me” on Spotify

#GxldApproved: LGP Ammon – “Underground (TMNT)”

“Underground (TMNT)” by LGP Ammon is TNT…explosive! I’ve recently been introduced to LGP Ammon and realized he is a part of Holy City Records, which houses FIRE artists such as King Cutler, so I wasn’t surprised to hear some GAS from LGP.  Everything from his ferocious flow and expert delivery to the subtle references to Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles in parallel to the power of the underground. Astounding. This song belongs in the next TMNT movie in a fight scene or ending credits. LGP Ammon gives me feels of Logic, Big Sean, and Dax and “Underground (TMNT)” has officially got me excited to continue to dig into his catalog and get familiar!

Contributed by Thaddeus Adams

“Underground (TMNT)” on Spotify

Crisis Actress – The Bag

Crisis Actress, the Los Angeles-formed group with members all hailing from Charleston, SC, just released their latest EP The Bag on October 6th. Guitarist Brooks Hannon mentioned that the record was especially different because of the band’s original concept to exist only as a “recording-based project” and that all of the songs on the EP were documentation of what they wrote live. The Bag was recorded in downtown LA at a DIY studio the group built themselves. Everything about this record accentuates its noise pop-new wave core from the cover art to the use of time signature changes, modulation effects, and synth exploration. 

Following the run of their West Coast tour this fall, Crisis Actress will be in Charleston for their first hometown show at The Royal American on December 30th with Art Star and Show Me Mary!

On the playlist: “the bag”

Contributed by Sarah Grace Sherbondy

The Bag on Spotify

#GxldApproved: Lou Algiedi – Legacy Loading…

One of Melloe Soule’s most recent additions, Lou Algiedi, has dropped a handful of vibes in 2023. Joining the catalog is his Legacy Loading… EP. Lou always provides an almost ominous, wavy bounce to all of his music and this 3-pack falls right in order. Fun hooks, atmospheric instrumentals, and experimental tone switches with his vocals and the overall soundscape. Lou’s amusing vocal fluctuations-from whisper to punchy rhymes to slight harmonies-reminds me of artists like Famous Dex and Rich The Kid and add another enjoyable feature to his music.

On the playlist: “SoHigh (Holy City, Holy Child)”

Contributed by Thaddeus Adams

Legacy Loading… on Spotify

Palace – “Rabid Dog”

Palace released their new single “Rabid Dog” and it projects the childhood friends and London-based group into an even more remarkable space of the hypnotic alternative-indie genre. The single was recorded at Unwound Studios in the heart of Southeast London and submerges ears deep into a fervent universe of emotions, through enthralling yet languorous lyricism. The new single will serve as the opening track on the EP, Part II– Nightmares & Ice Cream. According to an NME review, frontman Leo Wyndham described the track as “realizing that our inner child is always present and part of us. In fact, we are still that person, we’re all just older and the vulnerable child is very much still there.”

Contributed by Sarah Grace Sherbondy

“Rabid Dog” on Spotify

Argot – “Nancy”

Charleston, SC-based indie rock group Argot hit us with their first song of the year, “Nancy,” last week. The track opens in layers, beginning with an alluring thump of bass. Cymbals, pattering drums, keyboard and guitar then file in one by one. “Nancy” harkens back to 90s/2000s indie rock, presenting a sound that feels both jaded and energetic. Bold guitar and expansive, yet measured vocals shine in the chorus. “Sometimes we all need things,” Argot reminds us. 

Contributed by Kate Bryan

“Nancy” on Spotify

Late Night Special – “Summer Nights”

Charlotte rock group Late Night Special’s “Summer Nights” is a laid-back ode to the end of summer and the onset of fall. It embraces the changing seasons with open arms, but also notes the lonesome quality of wintertime, and how many are looking for someone to keep them warm. The track was recorded and produced here in Charleston at Matt Zutell’s Coast Records, with mastering from Matthew Garber of For The Record.

Contributed by Chris Huber

“Summer Nights” on Spotify

Whitehall – “Lost and Found”

Former Charleston, current NYC-based rock band Whitehall releases the second of three bonus tracks from their 2023 album Maizy, “Lost and Found”. Paddy McKiernan’s vocals are moody and disillusioned, as he sings about going nowhere in his relationship or in life. But not really trying to go anywhere, due to what seems to be an underlying depression. The track takes its time drawing out the sonic layers, with lots of reverb on the electric guitar serving as the main decorative element.

Contributed by Chris Huber

“Lost and Found” on Spotify

Droze & the Drift – “Mimosas”

Charleston reggae-rock band Droze & the Drift released a new single called “Mimosas”, which is all about the breakfast cocktail featuring an infusion of champagne and orange juice. Apparently, this is the only way these guys like their orange juice, and they drink them all day. While I can’t say this song is groundbreaking from a musical or emotional standpoint, it sure is fun, and these guys have some buzz around town.

Contributed by Chris Huber

“Mimosas” on Spotify