Samia

November 18, 2020

Samia treats fans to “Waverly” video & Anjimile cover

Today Samia shares a music video for Baby-standout “Waverly.”  Directed by frequent visual collaborator Matt Hixon, the clip eschews the urban vignettes of the song’s lyrics for a woozy backwoods trip that may or may not end in the den of a low-grade cult. In what has slowly become Samia’s signature visual style, the video is a surrealist, dream-like trek through the absurd. Watch it above.

The release of the video arrives alongside a re-imagining of “Waverly” courtesy of indie folk artist Anjimile (Giver Taker is one of our favorite records of the year!), who spins the song’s buoyant, piano-led energy into a hushed ballad that wouldn’t sound out of place on an early Sufjan Stevens album. The rendition serves as the first in a series of collaborations, reworks and re-imaginings set for release over the coming months. We’ll have more details there soon. In the meantime, listen to the cover below or wherever you stream music


dad sports

November 16, 2020

dad sports’ “gf haircut” single is out now

Back in August we announced the signing of Ottawa sweethearts dad sports with a pair of perfectly-crafted dream pop tunes “name & place” and “out 4 a breather.”  Today the boys returns with a song that commands you to feel things about that haircut your ex gave you a few months back. “Alex and I were hanging in our basement while rocking haircuts that our exes gave us when we came up with the idea for the song,” says dad sports’ Miguel Plante. “It’s about how those haircuts outlasted the relationships.”

On “gf haircut” they run through several minutes of brightly-lit guitar pop before arriving at our favorite coda of 2020: a wistful wash of DIY Death Cab and twinkly bedroom emo catharsis. The video is exactly what you’d expect: fucking adorable, tracking the theme of the song with a lighthearted energy. “The original plan was to cut our actual hair in the vid,” says Plante. “But we all shaved our heads during the summer so we just got some funny wigs instead.”

Stream “gf haircut” here, and stay tuned for more from dad sports soon.

Jordana

October 27, 2020

Jordana releases “I Guess This Is Life” single & music video, announces Something To Say To You LP

“I Guess This Is Life” is the latest single from Jordana. While recent releases flexed either heavier or poppier muscles, this tune sounds like a panoramic take on the indie-folk bedroom sound of her debut Classical Notions Of Happiness. With the aid of Jordana’s now-regular collaborator MELVV, the track brings together his incredibly precise production and Jordana’s sweetly sung, crystal clear vocals. Like much of her recent output, this is a coming-of-age song; grappling with what faith is, perceiving and being perceived, being attuned to how the most seemingly innocuous experiences in your life can give you pause and affect you deeply. The music video, shot in Wichita, KS, was produced by another of Jordana’s close collaborators, Mel Mercer, who is also responsible for all of her recent press photos.

Of the song, Jordana says, “it’s about the motions of everyday life and how experiences, no matter big or small, make up the person that you are and how you both perceive and are perceived by the world”

Jordana previously announced the release of the …To You EP. The six-song collection is the completion of a two-part series she kicked off with July’s Something To Say EP. The two EPs will be compiled together to make up Something To Say To You LP, the full-length follow up to the aforementioned Classical Notions.

The 12″ LP is available for pre-order and is set for release on January 22nd. The compilation will be available digitally on December 4th, alongside the …To You EP. Pre-save or pre-order here.

Native Sun

October 21, 2020

Native Sun release 90 second blast of punk rock angst, “Government Shutdown”

Doesn’t take 90 seconds to get the point across in this raucous punk rock scream-along from Native Sun. The band we miss seeing live the most reminds us why with their new one, “Government Shutdown.” The Brooklyn-based trio’s new single is  full of righteous anger and frenetic rage. The video, produced by POND Creative, intersperses “patriotic” images with news clippings, visuals of capitalist excess and striking historical footage, both skewering and lamenting the American experiment. As frontman Danny Gomez says, “What’s more American than a band of immigrants?”, and who better to see both the depths of pain and beauty that America holds.

“Government Shutdown” began conception a year ago to this month on a cold, rainy evening while passing through Chicago’s Treehouse Studios,” says Gomez. “Disenchantment, exhaustion, and numbness permeated. Our goal was to implement a lyrical structure where LESS is MORE (deviating from anything else we’d done in the past). Wordplay Economy — instead presenting a chant that could be sung anywhere, anytime, and collectively to represent unison in the frustration experienced by our current state of affairs. How can anger be used to uphold the government’s inability to serve the individuals that put them in power?”

Pre-COVID, the band was touring the west coast with White Reaper, on their way to SXSW, and had just celebrated their first release with us here at GJ (“Juarez”) selling out back-to-back shows in New York. While touring plans were scrapped, the band has stayed busy during quarantine releasing a covers EP benefitting The Okra Project, Border Angels, RAINN, Bushwick Ayuda Mutua, and the National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network. They’ve also been involved in the photo and poster fundraising effort “Bring Music Home” to benefit the National Independent Venue Association. The “Bring Music Home” initiative has been supported by and featured in Variety and Pitchfork. The band will also be featured in the upcoming documentary film Brooklyn is Burning, showcasing the Brooklyn music scene at its peak pre-COVID, how artists are coping during this time of crisis, and how the scene will be impacted in the aftermath.

Haulm

October 20, 2020

Haulm return with new single “Call The Waves”

After a nearly two year hiatus, Haulm are back with their new single “Call The Waves,” premiered earlier today at Billboard. The duo’s new track is a prescient downtempo-pop song written for, and about, our dystopic times. Songwriter JT Norton wrote “Call The Waves” in March in reaction to the early non-action the Trump administration was taking around the pandemic and the news that Trump had a meeting with a possibly Covid-positive Bolsonaro. The beautiful song, and music video, belie the pain and anger at the heart of their new single, watching the callous response by those in power and the complete disregard for human life result in our current national mass tragedy and the powerlessness we have all felt as it unfolds. Norton explains the impetus behind the song saying;

“Call The Waves” was written the night of March 12, after the news that President Trump met with a potentially Covid Positive President Bolsonaro. The idea that these two world leaders, who both downplayed the virus to the detriment of their people could potentially become victims of it smacked of a kind of poetic justice. But what the song is really trying to channel is the sadness of the impending loss of life and the utter powerlessness we feel as citizens of a collapsing democracy.”

Samia

October 18, 2020

Samia releases full band version of “Is There Something in the Movies?”

Today Samia shares a new full band version of “Is There Something in the Movies?,” the album closing number from her debut, The Baby.  Available wherever you stream music, this new take is much more faithful to the sonics of the live version, which anyone who has seen Samia over the past two years will recognize. Alongside the single comes a live studio music video, filmed, directed and edited by Matthew Hixon captured at Red Convertible Recording in Brooklyn, NY.

We’ve been playing this version of ‘movies’ live for a couple years but opted to put a more stripped down version that’s centered around the vocals on the record.” Samia shares, adding, “Making this video was the first time we got to hang as a band since quarantine started, so it was a special moment for all of us! I love to rock with my band.”

Snag your copy of The Baby over in our shop right now.

Lupin

October 8, 2020

Lupin celebrates release of debut album with music video for “KO Kid”

Today, our very own Jake Luppen celebrates the release of his debut solo album, Lupin. We’ve known Jake for years, and we’ve had plenty of opportunities to beam with pride as he’s grown into one of the most impressive songwriters and musicians we know. But today we beam the brightest. Lupin is a fully actualized vision, an exploration of ideas that sound both at home and totally foreign to the worlds of Hippo Campus and Baby Boys. It’s part futuristic funk-infused R&B, part maximalist mutant pop, part art-damaged indie rock. 

 

Earlier this week, Jake offered up KO Kid,” a sonic fever dream bolstered by a thunderously sluggish beat and Luppen’s trademark falsetto, coyly dipping in and out of the proceedings. Like the rest of the album, the production here from longtime Luppen collaborator BJ Burton somehow manages to be both understated and bold, replete with keys from Frank Ocean keyboardist Buddy Ross and drums from JT Bates, whose most recent credit includes the new Taylor Swift album. The song is accompanied by a fittingly surreal claymation acid trip, embedded above, that perfectly conveys the anxious energy of the song, directed by Karla Mellett. Of the song, Luppen explains:

“I had the KO Kid guitar progression for a long time before I eventually worked it into a finished track. I was having a really difficult time trying to write a melody over it, so one day I decided to just improvise the vocals for the verses, which is why the melody feels more off the cuff than the other songs. The lyrics allude to the night I told my girlfriend at the time about my attraction to a non-binary friend. I’ve spent most of my life repressing my attraction to people that didn’t identify as women, so I wrote the idea of the KO KID-character as a way to fight those inhibitive and self-imposed judgments.” 

Written mainly in breaks during a sprawl of 112 shows for Hippo Campus’ Bambi from 2018-2019, Lupin was an unexpected path to confidence. It also offered an escape from the grind of endless touring and a way for Luppen to process major and stressful life events directly through songwriting. Like “Vampire,” which, despite its lilting undulating synths, was written by Luppen after a CT scan revealed an abnormal mass on his brain, leaving him under the impression he was dying. Or “Lazy,” one of the first major break-throughs of the record, which deals with depression destroying self-image and struggling to build a new support system in the wake of a break-up. It’s a record that opens up both lyrically and musically and reaps the benefits of that candor over and over.

Get your copy in our shop now or wherever you stream music.

Lupin

September 16, 2020

Lupin drops double single/video for “Vampire / Murderer”

Although Jake Luppen rose to prominence as a vocalist and guitarist in our very own Hippo Campus, the songs of his debut solo album Lupin feel like meeting him for the first time. Today he proves that with two brand new songs and videos — both directed by frequent Bon Iver collaborator Aaron Anderson — giving fans a more in-depth look at the complexities of his debut album. Both tracks deal with some heavy emotional liftings and reveal a new depth to Luppen not only as a musician but a songwriter. 

“Vampire” touches on Jake’s surreal experience when he was told about a lump in his brain. “I was fully under the impression that I was dying when I wrote this – I had gotten a CT scan a couple weeks before that revealed a mass in my brain, which led me to believe that I had brain cancer or some form of parkinsons.”

While “Murder” deals with death of a different kind, the painful ending of a longterm relationship and part of the moving on process. “I had been living alone in a house that I used to share with my ex, so the lyrics were inspired by all of the things she left behind. One day I literally packed everything that reminded me of our relationship into boxes and shoved them in my closet. It felt like a funeral.” 

The two new tracks come off the back of the previously released “May”. The song is a funk-driven, colossal pop gem with crashing drums that digs even deeper into Luppen’s well-documented pop sensibilities and is perfectly complimented by producer BJ Burton’s (Bon Iver, Low, Charli XCX) own sonic palette. 

You can pre-order the album over in our shop now.

Jordana

September 3, 2020

Jordana announces …To You EP & 12″ featuring both of her 2020 EPs, releases “Divine” single & video

Today Jordana has announced the upcoming release of the …To You EP, with the new single & music video for “Divine,” directed by Nick D’Agostino. The six-song collection is the completion of a two-part series the Kansas songwriter kicked off with July’s Something To Say EP. But that’s not it: the two EPs will be compiled together to make up – you guessed it! – Something To Say To You, the full-length follow up to Classical Notions of Happiness, which we reissued back in March. The 12″ LP will be available for pre-order this fall (more details soon!) and is set for release December 4th, same date as this new EP will hit digital shelves.

A lot has happened for the buzzy 20-year-old in the two years since she dropped Classical Notions Of Happiness. And it shows. The new single, “Divine”, traverses Jordana’s trauma from past relationships and the lengthy road to finding her confidence, peace and strength. The chorus acts as a mantra of sorts with Jordana repeating “Some day I’ll find / Somewhere divine”. About the song, Jordana says: “Divine is a song I wrote that speaks on the exhausting cycle of emotional battles and mental recovery that I’ve endured from past relationships.” 


 With Jordana’s impeccable guitar work front and center, and the expansive production of NYC’s MELVV, both collections of songs convey the, rather incredibly fast, growth from the stripped down bedroom pop of her debut. Jordana continues to write immediately compelling, relatably raw, personal songs about her struggles with emotional duress; whether about toxic relationships on first single “Divine”, calling out abusers in her scene with the rage filled, yet incredibly catchy, “F**k You,” or the deeply honest relationship struggles of “Decline.”

Samia

August 27, 2020

Samia celebrates release of The Baby with “Triptych” music video

 

Today marks the release of Samia’s debut album, The Baby. She celebrated its impending release earlier this week with the final teaser from the record, “Tiptych.” This is a song that Samia herself calls “a pretty blatant cry for help and an opportunity to confess my fear of being misunderstood.” So it’s no wonder that the video for The Baby-standout is about a relationship with a ventriloquist dummy. Communication seems nearly impossible in the codependent relationship at the core of the video, directed by Samia’s longtime friend Fred Hechinger. The Samia of “Triptych” embraces and teases her helpless partner at whim. Her conflicting emotions match the dichotomy of the song, a peaceful, indie rock track belied by taunting, aggressive sentiments. Somehow even though we’ve yet to release her debut, it’s accurate to say this is classic Samia.

“I wrote ‘Triptych’ sobbing in a green room in Denver,” she shares. “I’d just read the story of Francis Bacon and his lover/muse, George Dyer, whose chaotic lifestyle served as Bacon’s artistic inspiration. George Dyer overdosed in the bathroom of a hotel room paid for by Bacon, who famously painted a triptych of his lover’s final moments. I had just been through a pretty tough breakup and felt I might be purposefully getting myself into dicey situations to justify my big feelings and write about them.”

It’s a fitting song to celebrate the release of, The Baby, available here. The album is a big, soaring, ambitious collection of bouncey indie folk, artful pop and bouyant rock. Contemporary ideals about romantice (“Is There Something in the Movies?”) or supposed parallels between fitness and happiness (“Fit N Full”), tying each to her own personal experiences. The insightful wordplay showcases the voice of an emerging lyricist with their pulse on the modern condition. 

While these songs explore Samia’s fear of being alone, they were lovingly brought to life with the help of her community. Many of her tourmates eventually became collaborators as she prioritized working with old friends and kindred spirits. Early demos of The Baby were workshopped with members of the band Active Bird Community, and the album was produced by Jake Luppen, Nathan Stocker & Caleb Hinz, the former two best known as members of indie-pop rebels Hippo Campus. Along with studio whiz Lars Stalfors (Foster the People, Soccer Mommy), Samia assembled a seemingly disparate crew, stretching from Los Angeles to Minnesota to New York, connected only by her trust and vision.