These days, we’re all looking forward to summer and needing a little sunshine in our lives. Lucky for us, then, the Sunshine Boys are releasing “Summertime Kids” tomorrow. The Sunshine Boys are Dag Juhlin (Poi Dog Pondering, Slugs), Freda Love Smith (Blake Babies, Mysteries Of Life) and Jacqueline Schimmel (Big Hello, Justin Roberts), and “Summertime Kids” is the second single off the Chicago trio’s sophomore album, Work And Love (Room F/Pravda), out May 1.
“Summertime Kids” is a timeless indie-pop confection, instantly catchy, melodic and infectious. But listen closer to the lyrics, and you’ll realize that Juhlin isn’t singing about beach boys and girls having fun on school break.
“While this song wheels around the perimeter of the circle of life, it joins the action as we wonder, ‘Have we fallen short in our efforts to prepare our fast-growing kids for The Big Bad World?'” says Juhlin. “Regardless, they’re headed out into it, and so ‘Summertime Kids’ admits, ‘We did what we did, knowing they could never stay.’ Amidst all the inherent worry of parenthood is the realization that ‘there are so many things that we will never understand.’ As I get older, I empathize with my parents and the choices they made, the unresolved issues they lived with, the ‘unfinished paintings’ they left behind. The kids are ultimately on the same path that we’ve been on, facing the same challenges we inherited from generations before, all of us doing our heartfelt and imperfect best.”
If intelligent pop is your thing, “Summertime Kids” is a must hear. Fortunately for you, we have it a day early for your listening pleasure. We’re proud to premiere “Summertime Kids” today on magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now.
While Zoom’s stock price continues to soar as most of the world is stuck at home, Zoon’s stock should being rising soon as well. On June 19, the Paper Bag label will release Bleached Wavves, the debut album from Zoon. For the uninitiated, Zoon is Daniel Monkman, an indigenous Canadian musician who describes his output as “moccasin gaze” (a mixture of shoegaze and traditional First Nations music, obviously).
Monkman named his musical project after the Ojibway word “zoongide’ewin,” which means bravery and courage. He did so to recognize his ongoing journey back from his active drug and alcohol addiction. Aside from its gorgeously ethereal washes of sound, the 10-track Bleached Wavves is also powerful in the hope it inspires in its listeners. The album-closing “Help Me Understand” is one of many standout tracks that does just that.
“‘Help Me Understand’ is from a short story/poem I wrote about an unknown First Nations protagonist who lives homeless on Vancouver Island,” says Monkman. “While homeless, they become very ill. While no help is to be found, they accept death, and while on their last moments, they’re greeted by the creator, who welcomes them into the heart of the sun.”
Monkman enlisted Justis Krar (IMMV Productions) to direct the trippy video for “Help Me Understand” as well as the clip for fellow Bleached Wavves track “BrokenHead.”
“Making the videos challenged me to create visuals that both conveyed the intent of the song as well as facilitating an abstract narrative,” says Krar. “Daniel was integral to the process as he guided me toward visuals that represented indigenous concepts or stories that I had not had the chance to work with before. I love these songs dearly and am happy that Daniel choose to work with me.”
“I gave a little direction for the video but mostly left it up to Justis,” says Monkman. “I explained to him the story behind the song and where the lyrics come from.”
Whatever Monkman’s contributions to Krar’s video for “Help Me Understand” were, the end result is one you won’t want to miss. To that end, MAGNET is proud to premiere it today for your eyes only. Check it out right here, right now, and read our Q&A with Monkman after the jump.
Dead Don Henley and David Geffen. Pregnant Debbie Gibson with a two-headed love child. Fast-food-eating Jesus. Stuffed-muffin Martha Quinn. These are the characters who inhabit the songs created by the mighty Mojo Nixon. These folks rub elbows with the likes of vibrator-dependent women, rampaging rednecks, comatose girlfriends, country dicks, rabies-ridden babies, exhumed blues legends and, of course, Elvis.
On March 27, they’ll all be together for the very first time. The 10-CD/DVD The Mojo Manifesto: The Original Album Collection boxed set (Manifesto) collects all of Nixon’s studio albums (that’s 147 songs, kids!) plus full-length documentary The Mojo Manifesto: The Life And Times Of Mojo Nixon.
Nixon—now a DJ/host on SiriusXM—decided not to include any bonus tracks on The Original Album Collection, but he did dig around his Cheez-It-crusted archives and found this track for MAGNET to premiere today. It’s called “Occupy.”
“This song was written and recorded in the fall of 2011,” says Nixon. “I borrowed Woody Guthrie’s ‘You can’t scare me, I’m sticking to the union’ for the chorus. The second verse is, ‘Gonna occupy the bars, fill up all the jails/Eat so many mushrooms that we grow tails/Gonna occupy an eightball and yer pepper spray/Gonna make my stand, stay right here today.'”
Classic Mojo and a Mojo classic! We’re proud to premiere “Occupy” today on magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now, kings and queens of the couch.
Your Favorite Enemies frontman Alex Henry Foster launches his solo career in the U.S. on May 1 with the release of Windows In The Sky. (The LP came out in his native Canada the end of last year.) “The Hunter (By The Seaside Window),” the album’s first single, is Windows In The Sky‘s 15-minute centerpiece. Cinematic in scope, the track has an accompanying short film directed by Jessie Nottola that will premiere tomorrow in Paris at Quebecium with a Q&A with Foster and Nottola to follow.
“It emerged from a 30-minute jam that would later be released as 15 minutes of a noisy, out-of-breath and tortured kind of dark, spiritual, emotive and redemptive sonic journey,” says Foster of the song. “The lyrics are part of a series of texts that I wrote in my new home in the middle of the Virginia Highlands after completing a two-year exile in the city of Tangier. The symbolistic elements are numerous but are fundamentally the most honest I’ve been able to be regarding my lifelong struggles with depression and anxiety.”
Today, we’re proud to premiere the radio edit of “The Hunter (By The Seaside Window)” on magnetmagazine.com. Check it out now, and read our Q&A with Foster (after the jump) while you listen.
S.G. Goodman is all about celebrating her humble roots. Goodman’s first single, “Way I Talk,” is a menacingly honest declaration of who she is, where she’s from and the music that moves her—all of it summed up nicely in the pivotal line, “Sharecropper daughter, she sings the blues of a coal miner’s son.”
“I grew up in a small town on the Mississippi River, where my family still farms,” says the Kentucky native, whose debut album, Old Time Feeling (Verve Forecast), is out May 29. “Even in my short time on earth, I’ve watched how the business of farming has shifted. I’m very proud of my home and what my family does, and it was a real treat to hang out with my niece in the video. I feel like our experience as farmer’s daughters will be more rare as time passes, so it was important for me to tell our story and capture our way of life.”
Old Time Feeling was produced by My Morning Jacket’s Jim James, who shares Goodman’s Kentucky roots. “He was a very encouraging voice throughout the whole process,” she says. “He helped shine a light on what we were doing well and took a strong stance on things he felt diminished what should be the focus of the record.”
Goodman joins Tyler Childers and Ian Noe on a growing list of promising new talent from Kentucky—and she has a theory as to why her home state has become such a hotbed. “I think people are desperate for genuine voices and stories, and that’s a trait Kentuckians have always been known for,” says Goodman. “It would be hard to put a filter over who we are, because where we come from has left too deep of a mark to hide.”
Goodman is also genuine about her struggles with obsessive compulsive disorder, an issue for her, in one form or another, since grade school. “After I moved past my state of denial of having a mental illness, I sought counseling and have undergone cognitive behavioral therapy and EMDR (eye movement desensitization and reprocessing),” says Goodman. “Even when I’m on the road, I have counseling sessions scheduled. For years, I tried everything I could, aside from medication. Diet, essential oils and exercise didn’t touch the severity of my situation, so I’m happily medicated now.”
When asked how OCD plays into her creativity, Goodman demurs. “That would be a long story to tell,” she says, before expanding on that somewhat. “I think OCD makes it hard to let things be. I’ve been told that I have a tendency to over-edit. I’m also very sensitive to when things aren’t played exactly the same way each time. I always want to start the song over, and it’s made practices hell in the past—and it makes playing live an everlasting cognitive behavioral exercise. At least I’m used to it by now.”
Tour Dates 3/17- Austin, TX – SXSW 3/18 – Austin TX – Yeti Party @ SXSW 3/18 – Austin, TX – St. David’s Historic Sanctuary @ SXSW 3/19 – Luck, TX – Luck Reunion 3/20 – Nashville, TN – Basement East 3/21 – Knoxville, TN – Bijou Theatre 3/22 – Asheville, NC – The Grey Eagle 3/24 – Saxapahaw, NC – Haw River Ballroom 3/25 – Washington, DC – Black Cat 3/27 – Brooklyn, NY – Music Hall of Williamsburg 3/28 – Philadelphia, PA – World Cafe Live 3/29 – Boston, MA – The Sinclair 3/31 – Montreal, QC – L’Esco 4/1 – Toronto, ON – Horseshoe Tavern 4/3 – Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall 4/4 – East Moline, IA – The Rust Belt 4/5 – Milwaukee, WI – The Back Room at Colectivo 4/7 – Minneapolis, MN – The Fine Line 4/8 – Omaha, NE – The Waiting Room 4/9 – Wichita, KS – The Wave 4/11 – Oklahoma City, OK – Tower Theatre 4/24 – Decatur, AL Princess Theatre 4/26 – McMinnville, TN – Cumberland Caverns 4/28 – Louisville, KY – Headliners 4/30 – Macon, GA – Cox Capital Theatre 5/1 – Atlanta, GA – Shaky Knees 5/3 – Mobile, AL – Callaghan’s 5/8 – Birmingham, AL – Saturn 5/12-15 – Philadelphia, PA – NON-COMMvention 5/23 – Burlington, VT – Higher Ground 5/24 – Portland, ME – Port City Music Hall 5/26 – Northampton, MA – Iron Horse Music Hall 5/27 – Fairfield, CT – The Warehouse 5/28 – Jersey City, NJ – White Eagle Hall 5/29 – Pittsburgh, PA – Mr. Small’s Theatre 5/30 – Cleveland Heights, OH – Grog Shop 6/2 – St. Louis, MO – Old Rock House 6/3 – Maquoketa, IA – Codfish Hollow Barn 6/4 – Minneapolis, MN – Fine Line $ 6/5 – Chicago, IL – Thalia Hall 6/6 – Grand Rapids, MI – The Pyramid Scheme 6/7 – Ferndale, MI – Magic Bag 8/8 – Waynesville, OH – Bellwether Festival