The Round-Up (31/05/24)

The newest development in my life is that there’s an infestation of bamboo sprouting up across my yard. Any landscaping tips, or info. on pandas for hire, would be appreciated. In the meantime, here’s some tunes we’ve enjoyed this week.

TRACK OF THE WEEK: Abbie Ozard feat. Pixey – miss american dream

Abbie Ozard teams up with Pixey for anthemic new single ‘miss american dream’ – an arms-aloft ode to best friend crushes, accompanied by an instantly-iconic video inspired by female friendships. Having always looked up to girls and women for her whole life, due to “how we do things, how strong we are as individuals and how powerful the energy can be when they’re in a room together,” these feelings of awe come to fruition on this track, which celebrates girlhood, friendship, and romance. Abbie and Pixey’s bond began virtually with the two mutual fans exchanging DM compliments over Instagram before meeting in Pixey’s home studio, and it’s evident the chemistry these two have, resulting in a heartfelt and meaningful collaboration between two artists who sound like kindred spirits. [GC]

Also new this week…

Ain’t – Oar
The band may be describing staying afloat through their lyrics, but this song is consistent with its style. Ain’t definitely are ones to watch and with five members it’s hard to miss them. Although lyrically the words were written during the pandemic, they are quite versatile, applicable to any tricky situation. So catch this London group while you can and listen to their debut single , because not only can you hear the passion in the track, but the band are also ‘left to steady the oar’ and they’ll need all our support to do it. [TM]

Magdalena Bay – Death and Romance
A sweet slice of synth and keyboard magic are what US-based duo Magdalena Bay are giving us with their new track, ‘Death and Romance.’ This five minute tune bases itself in an upbeat, dance sound that complements Mica’s soft, high vocals, granting the whole track a sense of lightness. Perhaps it’s the exploding UFO in the cover art that brings the connection to mind, but the synth gives a space-like texture in the chorus that elevates the song to a whole other level of lovely complexity. Especially with what seems to be a transition into a different song at the tail end of this one, we’re anxiously awaiting the next drop from these two. [RG]

The Rills – I Don’t Wanna Be
Rife with a bold, choppy and fiery indie-rock swagger that’s become heavily synonymous with the band, and accompanied by a gritty and aggressive music video, The Rills’ ‘I Don’t Wanna Be’ tells a tale of unapologetic self-affirmation and outgrowing the limited mentality of small town living. A defiantly brazen anthem, about not allowing anyone to hold you down or paint you as anybody but yourself, The Rills sound confident and assured, an infectious feeling which transcends to the listener, too. [GC]

Dolores Forever – Go Fast Go Slow
Finally, the news we’ve been waiting for here at The Rodeo fell into our inboxes this week: Dolores Forever has a proper album due later this year. ‘Go Fast Go Slow’ is our first taste of that record, which sees the duo wearing their hearts on their sleeve in a spectacularly dancey fashion. It’s basically ‘Dancing On My Own’ for the summer of 2024: simply wonderful. [TJ]

Kassi Ashton – I Don’t Wanna Dance
I’ve only had one drink but if I have one more I might get up…’ Ashton’s lyrics have a narrative to them, one where you can imagine yourself in her situation. ‘I Don’t Wanna Dance’ sets the scene vivdly: you’re sat drinking at the bar, the glow of the LED signs dwelling on your face and this song is the soundtrack of your night. The reverb-style guitars mixed with the twang of Kassi’s voice makes this single so addictive. Now you’ve heard my thoughts on it, let the Californian native transport you to her world and take a listen for yourself. [TM]

Charly Bliss – Calling You Out
This wicked fun track from Charly Bliss is going to be bouncing around your noggin for the next week, no doubt. While it feels like pure pop at the outset, both the guitars and vocals ramp up to gain a bit of edge throughout the song, ending in a place that showcases the band’s ability to get a bit harder, which is where they really shine here. As their first record in five years is on the horizon, we’re intrigued and eager to see where they take their sound this time around. [RG]

Annie-Dog – Fish
Dublin newcomer Annie-Dog has announced her self-titled debut EP, set for release July 3rd via Dance To The Radio, with latest single ‘Fish’. ‘Fish’ sees Annie-Dog capitalise further on her early promise and shapeshifting pop sensibilities. “Being told that there are plenty of fish in the sea when going through a breakup or whatever always feels so ridiculous. I’m sure it is the case, but what has that got to do with me? Maybe I liked that one fish in particular,” she says of the track, and with as much character as sonic ability, Annie-Dog is surely one to watch. [GC]

Winona Fighter – Subaru
‘Subaru’ is rife with early 2000s, pop-punk adjacent influences, delivering something that would have fit right in on the seriously underrated Josie and the Pussycats soundtrack. It’s a resurgence we’ve been witnessing for some time now, and Winona Fighter make a great case for why they’re worthy of carrying on the torch. [TJ]

Vacant Weekend – Funny Dad
With bright indie guitar, and a unique and captivating vocal style, Manchester trio Vacant Weekend’s latest offering ‘Funny Dad’ is the perfect song to kick off the summer, conjuring images of sunlit road trips and carefree drives. Set to feature on their upcoming EP releasing this summer, ‘Funny Dad’ explores themes of loss and indifference through a stream-of-consciousness lyrical style, reflecting its organic creation process and adding depth beyond its vibrant surface. The closest thing the band have released to a ballad, if you like emotive indie songs which resonate deeply in the soul, this is one for you. [GC]

Carpool Tunnel – The Risk
This song is love at first riff: it’s classic indie rock vibes all around, from easing in with the simple, melancholic guitar to the crowd vocals in the chorus. The lyrics also lend themselves to the indie aesthetic, short and not too detailed, but comforting all the same as they plead ‘Please don’t slow me down.’ This is a great track if you’re looking to find some chill new rock to spice up your playlist…and who isn’t? [RG]

Contributor Key:
[TM] Thomas Melia, [CC] Cat Campbell, [GC] Gemma Cockrell, [TJ] TJ Foster, [RG] Rory Graham

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