“If I wanted to, I will never be the same.”

“I’ll Be Fine” by the World Is Not Round | Back to the inbox – and local music in the inbox, yay! Here’s a band I imagine would be picked up by the Manila crowd but, for some reason, haven’t been, at least to my knowledge. (Disclaimer: my knowledge is incredibly bad.) The World Is Not Round is a band from Iligan, and last month they released their second album, Oblate Spheroid. (That supports their assertion.) It’s an interesting creature, although it’s partly because prior to listening to it I was listening to some 8-bit renditions of new K-pop songs. I thought I heard 8-bit at the beginning. And then it proved to be a meld of a lot of things: fuzzy guitars that drive north, synths that are more Kavinsky than the Bangles – but it does not sound like some 80s throwback. It’s hard to describe, but it’s a nice, varied record. Whatever. Listen to it. It’s on the usual places. I think you’ll get why I’m surprised the tastemakers, to my knowledge, haven’t picked them up. Or they have. I suck at this. [NB] (Have things I should hear? Drop me a line here.)

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“I got this feeling that I can’t shake no matter what they say.”

“Better Days” by the Classic Kids | It seems I left the inbox with a queue of optimistic songs. Yesterday had one; today has one, too. It’s another outfit from New York, so there’s another similarity. Formed in 2013, the Classic Kids is a four-piece that specialize in pleasant indie pop that’s not too hard to get into. “Better Days” starts nicely, continues nicely, ends nicely. All right, that sounds snarky, but you know what I mean: songs don’t really have to be groundbreaking to be interesting, and while listening to this one I couldn’t help but tap my feet. And then I thought, “this sounds a lot like American Authors” – remember that band, remember that unavoidable song? Turns out the band’s enlisted one of the producers for that band. So that makes sense… [NB] (Have things I should hear? Drop me a line here.)

“We’re gonna turn this nightmare inside out.”

“Pennies” by Erin Pellnat | More Monday morning music? I swear, this theme is accidental. But this is a different sort of Monday morning music – not as much chilled as it is cheery. Considering I’ve just come from a busy weekend and, for some reason, didn’t get enough rest over Sunday, this works very well for me. We’ve written twice about Christopher Pellnat early this year, and here’s another one, although he just does the guitar here, and his sister (I think?) daughter Erin does the singing, lending the whole song that scratchy 60s country vibe that our brains tell us should mean good things. And the sentiment of this song is cheerful, too. Have at it. [NB] (Have things I should hear? Drop me a line here.)

“I need a Saturday. I need it every day.”

“Holiday” by Gloo | This song is just under two and a half minutes. That was going to be my angle – that I’m so busy that I can only write about a song this short, and the fact that it screams the thing I’ve been thinking of lately is a plus. But then this song is so packed it doesn’t feel like it’s that short. That, or I can really feel the sentiment. Here’s a trio from Sussex called Gloo (nice name) and they released this video last week to kick off promos for their debut album, A Pathetic Youth, which drops on 6 July. The band “provide a sense of relief from modern life’s struggles” – well, that’s what the PR copy says, and yes, it sounds lofty, because you just don’t know how stressed I am right now, but, hey, this song is a surprising jolt of catharsis with a bit of caffeine mixed in. Just what I need for today. And tomorrow. And Saturday. I am at work on Saturday… [NB] (Have things I should hear? Drop me a line here.)

“You can forget every ounce of shame.”

“Overthrown” by Zosia | Here’s one from Zosia, real name Anneke Lada – she takes her stage name from her grandmother – based in Los Angeles and just dropping this new single. Opening segment: “this reminds me a bit of Imogen Heap, in a good way.” Middle segment: “wait, this is a different song now; I feel a little disappointed.” And suddenly: “the song is over?” This does just clock in at a little over two minutes, ending when things get really interesting. It’s a classic case of wanting more just as your expectations are defied. And then I read the press release, and listen to the song again, and realize it’s all deliberate. “Overthrown” is Zosia’s take on how sexual assault victims are treated: “I was depressed and angry for ever other victim who has faced and will face this sort of dismissal of their pain,” she said, herself a victim. I see how the slow build, the sudden swell, and the even more sudden end connects, how there’s a moment of mass indignation that fails toassess everything in the long run. Or am I supposed to be analyzing this? Me? [NB] (Have things I should hear? Drop me a line here.)