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Saturday, February 4, 2023

New indie music by John Lewitt, Softlung, Faded Paper Figures, Lucy Bell, The Hourglass Effect

John Lewitt: Aim High

This is the title track from a new EP by a Toronto singer-songwriter who's been in our big mix for several years. His music ranges from acoustic folk to driving rock, and this track starts out with gentle strumming before building to an electrified finish. He's teamed up again with Jeff Allen (aka Piewackit), a New Jersey-based songwriter and multi-instrumentalist; a few years back, they released an album as The Allen Lewitt Project. The lyric to this upbeat rocker encourages us to pursue our aspirations: "You never know until you try ... so take the shot, aim high."

Softlung: Don't Say No

From the flatlands of Saskatchewan comes this new single from the alt-rock project of S.J. Kardash. Written about "keeping an open mind in the face of change," it's billed as "featuring surfy-wet guitar riffs and lo-fi boot-stomping drums." Maybe it's just us, but we hear a touch of Beatles/Wings influence in the distorted bridge and in the refrain "Say maybe / But don't say no" (remember "say anything, but don't say goodnight tonight"?).

Faded Paper Figures: New City

This indie pop-rock trio is a collaboration among Kael and Heather Alden and R. John Williams. They began releasing music in 2008 when they were all in Los Angeles. Before long, Williams relocated to Connecticut, where he's an associate professor at Yale; more recently, the Aldens moved to Salt Lake City, where Heather is a family physician, while Kael writes music for film and TV. Working either remotely or in person, they've continued to produce their unique blend of electronic and acoustic instruments, literate lyrics, and John and Heather's overlapping vocals. Here they sing of someone who moved to New York "to find me."   

Lucy Bell: Love Me The Most

Photo by Abbie Wilmott
Back in 2019, we featured a couple of singles ("Lost on the Line," "Fools") by this then-19-year-old singer-songwriter from County Down in Northern Ireland. She's now preparing to release an EP, Emotion Pending, and this is the first taste. It's the song of a woman's frustration with a supposed partner who professes love but does things like standing her up at a restaurant ("The waiters are talking behind my back / They said they wanna go home and relax"). 

The Hourglass Effect: But Anyways

Full disclosure, this track is a over a year old, but just reached our ears via a fresh publicity push - and we're willing to bet it's new to most listeners. It's from the self-titled debut album by a Charlotte, North Carolina-based group consisting of songwriter-musician Drew Brashear, multi-instrumentalist Dave Hardman and vocalist Erin Fox-Clough. They describe themselves as combining "Southern roots with rock to create unforgettable feel-good tunes, underpinned by a bluesy soul."

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