ANCHR Magazine

Holding you down with the best new music

PREMIERE: "Crowd" by The Golden Fleece

Album Artwork by Pete Gowdy // @arcticsun_collageartist

Album Artwork by Pete Gowdy // @arcticsun_collageartist

The Golden Fleece are back with new music, and we’ve got the exclusive first listen of their new single “Crowd" below.

The track marks the debut single from the band’s upcoming album, announced today. Out April 5th, the band teased their new full length, saying, “Mind Mirror is the kind of album you listen to once, then throw on a pile of fire.”

Mind Mirror was recorded to tape at Future Apple Tree Studio and engineered by Pat Stolley, original Daytrotter engineer. You can pre-order the album here, and celebrate with the band at one of their release shows:

QC Release April 5th @ Rozz-Tox w/ Condor & Jaybird and Faintlife
Peoria Release April 6th @ Pizza Works w/ Condor & Jaybird and Faintlife

If you’re going to SXSW, you can also catch The Golden Fleece at our showcase on March 14th at Shiner’s Saloon.

Keep up with The Golden Fleece on Facebook + Instagram

PREMIERE: "Stage Fright" By Pool Holograph

Ahead of the official release tomorrow, March 5th, we’re giving you an exclusive first listen to Pool Holograph’s new single “Stage Fright.”

Pool Holograph is Wyatt Grant, Zach Stuckman, Jake Stolz, and Paul Stolz

Pool Holograph is Wyatt Grant, Zach Stuckman, Jake Stolz, and Paul Stolz

Pool Holograph’s lead singer and songwriter Wyatt Grant said the new single was written shortly after the release of their last album Transparent World. “With ‘Stage Fright’ particularly we wanted to focus on making a narrative separate from the supernatural themes of Transparent World. The imagery is that of a drama production (curtains, backdrops, decoys, etc.) in which a character experiences both sides of the fourth wall. The instrumentation was a departure from what we had used in the recent past, using a piano, xylophone, sounds of paper, and some layered acoustics,” Grant adds.

“Stage Fright” will officially be released alongside another single on a 7” split later this Spring through Land and Sea Dept.'s Audial LSD imprint, but take your first listen of the track below!


You can catch Pool Holograph at SXSW this year, including the ANCHR Showcase on March 14th at Shiner’s Saloon— full dates below. They’ll also be preforming at the next ANCHR Chicago showcase at Thalia Hall on March 22nd, tickets and information here.

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PREMIERE: "Oh! Sweet Nuthin'" By Thompson Springs

In honor of Lou Reed’s birthday today, Thompson Springs has recorded a cover of The Velvet Underground’s “Oh! Sweet Nuthin’” — and we’ve got the exclusive premiere!

Thompson Springs is Matt Smith, Andy Goitia, Jacob Bicknase // Photo by Jake Hanson

Thompson Springs is Matt Smith, Andy Goitia, Jacob Bicknase // Photo by Jake Hanson

Recorded, mixed, and mastered at Treehouse Records by Barrett Guzaldo straight to analog tape, this single comes ahead of Thompson Springs’ debut full length album, to be released later in 2019.

Take a listen to the new single below, and if you’re heading to SXSW this year, don’t miss Thompson Springs at our ANCHR SXSW Showcase at Shiner’s Saloon on March 14th.

Keep up with Thompson Springs on Facebook and Instagram.


Feature: Hard Times With Niiice.

Photo Courtesy of Niiice

Photo Courtesy of Niiice

Niiice. walks into our place of meeting, a 24hr vegan restaurant owned by ex-punks, grinning and scraggly. Which is not out of character for their sound: emo with a kick of power. I would be lying if I said I wasn’t hesitant of sitting down with a three piece band comprised of all white dudes, but the more we talk the more they grow on me. And obviously, I’ve already listened to their forthcoming EP Never Better, out today, March 1st on Brave Cove Records, which has given me high expectations. Never Better actually jumps off 2018 LP, Try to Stay Positive. Whereas “try to stay positive” sounds like measly advice, “never better” sounds like the sarcastic retort to “how are you?” The titles work as a musical “two steps forward, one step back”. Never Better is more concise and collaborative than previous releases, which is ironic considering that it’s hinged around instability. The catalyst being the ass-kicking summer of 2018 where singer and guitarist Roddie Gadeberg and drummer Sage Livergood shared an apartment with rats and mold. Which is probably why there’s a certain need for comfort on this EP. But as Gadeberg tells me about his love for the first two Slipknot albums, Livergood tells me he’s been listening to Lil Peep lately, and bassist Abe Anderson sits quietly, I see the full picture of Niiice. come into focus. Their lovable burnout trope is self aware, not a hint of irony on them.

Never Better opens with the more pop-influenced track, “Snowbored,” which gleefully delves into Midwestern loneliness and the season of snow that interconnects our sadness. On it, Gadeberg mutters “the weather’s fucked, life fuckin’ sucks/but what’s new with you?” Niiice. takes themselves lightly and their music seriously, leaving the emotions to fall somewhere in between, coming in waves of goofy twists on a more classic emo sound. On ‘Love Handlez’ a chipper cartoon voice chimes in “wait, let’s always be stupid. Forever!”, giving us the idea that Niiice is in on the joke: another band crammed with longing, broke, and coming up with track titles in their free time. But Niiice. is reflective, with Never Better being a product of spending a lot of time with yourself- for better or for worse. On the jangly ‘Blunt Force Marijuana’ Gadeberg bemoans “it’s like my father told me, I’ve got no direction/I hate the way I look like him when I’m staring at the mirror.” But the pitfalls of trying to be more doesn’t stop the EP from having a good time: It’s persistent with dynamic riffs. Livergood tells me “we don’t just play emo,” meaning that there’s more to Niiice. than scraping vocals and hating your hometown. The most aching part of Never Better is that the “you” that Gadeberg sings about isn’t some woman-shaped space in his life. “You” is rarely even a person. It’s nostalgia. It refers to a better state of mind, a better time and place. When things were just a bit easier. Never Better doesn’t point to past romantic relationships, but contentious family ones, typically with father figures (Gadeberg calls Emo Boy breakup songs “misogynistic” and “annoying”). Don’t conflate Niiice.’s stoner jokes with their ability to feel deeply. Niiice. is fluent in puns and memes, but isolation undercuts the melodic humor with the shiftlessness that comes from being lonely even when you’re not alone. The cover art for Never Better features a gap-toothed kid smudged with a sinking black eye, giving you a thumbs up. At one point Roddie adds that sometimes he feels like the kid on the cover. Or maybe the cover art feels like him. A kid still standing with a goofy smile after a smack. When it comes down to it, maybe Never Better can best be surmised as a trampled on thumb still pointed upwards.


Never Better is out now on Brave Cove Records. Niiice. will be touring March 8th-17th with a release show at the Garage in Burnsville, MN on March 17th.


Keep up with Niiice. on Facebook + Instagram





PREMIERE: "Feed The Pile" EP by Chromagnus

Photo Credit: Kelly Ngo

Photo Credit: Kelly Ngo

Today we have an exclusive sneak peek of Chromagnus’ brand new EP Feed The Pile, ahead of the project’s wide release tomorrow, March 1st.

Feed The Pile marks the Austin band’s first release as a four piece, with guitarist Max Prudhomme and bassist John “Hutch” Hutchinson joining founding members Will Grover and Ronnie Sokol. The tracking for the latest EP was done live to 1/2" tape in the band’s living room over the course of a week in early 2018, with band member John Hutchinson stepping into the producer role. The band says this recording process gave them full creative control, adding “We wanted the limitations and ‘vibe’ of analog recording to accurately convey the energy of the music, and we learned a lot in the process.”

Get your first listen of the four-track EP below, and keep up with Chromagnus on Facebook + Instagram.


Austin- make sure you don’t miss the band’s EP release show tomorrow at Hotel Vegas, presented by Howdy Gals- details here.

PREMIERE: "We're All Gunna Die" by Waltzer

Photos courtesy of Waltzer

Photos courtesy of Waltzer

Today we’re giving you the first listen to the new single “We’re All Gunna Die” by Waltzer, the brainchild of singer-songwriter and recent Chicago transplant Sophie Sputnik.

The well-traveled track was written when Sputnik lived in Florida and recorded with Felix Fung at Little Red Sounds studio in Vancouver. Now, it’s finally getting its release in Chicago. “I like to think this song reminds me of Little Shop of Horrors, but instead [it stars] Roy Orbison and The Supremes,” Sputnik says, describing the existential crisis-inspired song.  “It's a pretty dramatic show-tune, but it leaves room for sarcasm. There's no doubt I've had some long nights obsessing over my mortality and the next morning dealing with my emotional hang over,” she adds.

Reminiscing on the recording process, Sputnik says, “We used an electro-voice re15 mic, a lot of reverb and compression for the vocals, the drum machine on an old Lowery Orchestral Holiday organ, and my buddy Rob (Fuzzbaby Records) as the Zombie Elvis voice in the end. Recording this song was one of the best last minute decisions I've ever made, and I've made a lot of those.”

To follow up this first release of 2019, Sputnik says she’s already working on new material. “I'm currently in the process of recording more songs with Chris Kulwin, who does about a million incredible things (Rookie, Luke Henry, and The Trinity Irish Dance Company) as the producer in his studio, The Workshop.”



Now that you know the backstory, take a listen to “We’re All Gunna Die” below! You can also catch Waltzer live at Burlington Bar on February 22nd with Elk Walking, Aunt Kelly, and Captain UFO.

Flyer for Waltzer’s Chicago Debut Show

Flyer for Waltzer’s Chicago Debut Show


Keep up with Waltzer on Facebook & Instagram

 

PREMIERE: "Something Teenage" Video by Dream Version

Today we’re bringing you the first look at the video for Dream Version’s latest single “Something Teenage.” The trio from Chicago has an unwavering knack for crafting fun and catchy tunes that are guaranteed to get stuck in your head or get you dancing, and “Something Teenage” achieves both.

Dream Version performing at ANCHR’s September Showcase

Dream Version performing at ANCHR’s September Showcase

Although the lyrics read as a love letter, lead singer and guitarist Alec Jensen says it was not written for a romantic interest. “It's a love song for Iggy Pop, and references some things he said in this John Peel lecture,” Jensen clarifies. “In general it's supposed to be about the way I listened to music in high school, and how exciting it is now when something hits me that viscerally. Usually, it's nothing particularly smart or highbrow. Blah Blah Blah is a super glossy, plastic 80s record Iggy made with Bowie, and it's singing in the shower music.  ‘Something Teenage’ sounds more like Yo La Tengo than Iggy, but it's our little love letter,” he adds.

The video, shot and directed by local musician Emily Jane Powers, captures the buoyant energy of the track as it cuts back and forth between the band members enjoying a carefree, summer day at Montrose Beach and performing the track. Talking about the inspiration behind the video, Jensen says, “I came to Emily with the idea of basically doing the ‘Can't Buy Me Love’ sequence from Hard Day's Night,” adding that they wanted the video to focus in on the friendship between himself and bandmates Eric Brummitt and Michael Kunik. “Emily did a great job. She made us seem really funny, which is good, because we, like, are.”

Now that you know the backstory, get your first look at the video below!

Keep up with Dream Version on Facebook + Twitter + Instagram

PREMIERE: "Apple Tree" by Dreamboats Music Video

Photo Credit:  Reilly Drew

Photo Credit: Reilly Drew

Today we’re sharing the first look at Dreamboats’ debut single and video for “Apple Tree.” Dreamboats’ current line up recently came together when siblings Jeremy and Maddy Marsan and bandmate Dave Hubbell (formerly known as Maddy, Dave & Jerry) joined forces with John Duray.

The new four-piece blends together influences of country and shoegaze music to create a unique sound that they dub as “dream pop western.” The track “Apple Tree” gives listeners a sneak preview of what is to come on Dreamboats’ upcoming debut album. With the help of filmmaker Reilly Drew, the accompanying video for “Apple Tree” shows a juxtaposition of real life and daydreams, cutting back and forth between dreamy scenes and clips that showcase a mundane reality. Check out the finished product below, starring Dreamboats, Kubrick the dog, and Sheila the cat.


Keep up with Dreamboats on Facebook and Instagram

PREMIERE: "Daylight" by Capital Soirée

Today we’re giving you the first listen of Capital Soirée’s new single “Daylight,” a track that the band says is a conversation between lovers in a digital age.

Capiral Soirée is James Kourafas, Max Romero, and Steven Rejdukowski // Photo by Kate Liddy

Capiral Soirée is James Kourafas, Max Romero, and Steven Rejdukowski // Photo by Kate Liddy

“The song questions the honesty and authenticity of modern love where, with technology, dishonesty seems more prevalent than ever. Lines like ‘hold my hand as I hold my phone, we both pretend that we don't feel alone’ capture the struggle of wanting to experience something real with someone— being in the same room, yet feeling so disconnected,” they say, adding that they wanted to convey the feeling of being stuck in this place of constant struggle, uncertainty, paranoia, as well as love.

To juxtapose the melancholy and emotional sentiment of the lyrics, the group paired them with a more upbeat rhythm featuring drum machines and synths. This single marks the first of a group of singles that the band will be releasing in the coming months, and the track was written, recorded, and produced collectively by the band, with mixing done by James Kourafas of the group.

Now that you know the song’s backstory, take a listen to “Daylight” below!



Grab tickets to see Capital Soirée at Schubas on January 31st with Ember Oceans, August Hotel, and Friday Pilots Club here, and keep up with the band on Facebook + Instagram.

PREMIERE: Milk-Based Religion EP by Deep Sea Peach Tree

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Following the release of their debut album Vaguely Navy in 2017, NYC sleepy surf rockers Deep Sea Peach Tree are back with their new EP Milk-Based Religion. The 4-song release officially comes out tomorrow, but we have your first listen of the EP below.

Talking about the creative process behind these songs, lead vocalist and guitarist of the band, Kristof Denis, says, “I wanted this release to move our sound in a more vibey direction. I utilized keys more than in the past and with the help of John Colapinto's hot bass-lines, I think we achieved a new sound.” The songs were then recorded in a secret studio space provided by friends of the band, Jack Staffen and Eliza Callahan of Jack and Eliza and Purr. “This is the last release to feature original drummer Adam Wanetik and original bassist John Colapinto. They have since been replaced by new members Wiley Watson, Andrew Pesce and we've added a fourth member Andrew Dell Isola,” Denis adds.

Take a listen to the full EP now, and if you’re in New York, make sure you snag tickets to Deep Sea Peach Tree’s release show on December 2nd here.


Keep up with Deep Sea Peach Tree on Instagram + Facebook

PREMIERE: Rookie "I Can't Have You But I Want You" Music Video

Earlier this year, Chicago music scene veterans Joe Bordenaro and Max Loebman decided to put aside their separate musical projects and join forces to form ROOKIE, along with musicians Dimitri Panoutsos and Kevin Decker. The new group quickly took the city by storm, performing everywhere from house shows and dive bars to The Empty Bottle, Lincoln Hall, and Thalia Hall. Chances are, if you’ve caught one of ROOKIE’s live shows around Chicago this year, you’ll remember them performing “I Can’t Have You But I Want You”— with its belt-along chorus and relatable sentiment, it’s hard to forget. Today, the setlist staple finally gets a proper release with a music video and a physical release from Treehouse Records.

Recorded live to tape at the Treehouse Records studio by engineer Barrett Guzaldo, with assists from Elan Frankel on Rhodes, Steve Kostakes on organ and Chris Kulwin playing a Les Paul, the track keeps all its same character as when it’s performed at a ROOKIE show. The video for the song, filmed and directed by Tim Nagle, gives a behind-the-scenes look at the recording process. Check out the premiere of the music video below, and if you like what you hear, pre-order the record from Treehouse here— which includes a B Side of “The Move.”


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You can also snag your copy of “"I Can't Have You But I Want You"/ “The Move” at Virgin Hotels for a release show on December 1st with Ovef Ow, Glyders, and Knox Fortune & Friends. 


Keep up with ROOKIE on Facebook + Twitter + Instagram

Front Cover acknowledgements: Photography by Alec Basse and design by Yasmine Sayre

PREMIERE: "Northern States" By The Edwards

The Edwards are Kyle Maurisak (Nativity Beds), Chris DePorter (Torres), Emma McCall (Moonrise Nation), Stuart MacFadyen (Strange Foliage), and Chris Murphy.

The Edwards are Kyle Maurisak (Nativity Beds), Chris DePorter (Torres), Emma McCall (Moonrise Nation), Stuart MacFadyen (Strange Foliage), and Chris Murphy.

Ahead of the next ANCHR Showcase on November 27th featuring The Edwards, we’re premiering their first single “Northern States.”

The song stands today as a reimagined idea that was originally conceived for a scrapped 2014 solo project of Kyle Maurisak. Brought to life by the launch of The Edwards as a full band, the song highlights the creative interpretations and contributions of each band member. Maurisak leaves the songwriting open to interpretation, but nods to the overarching theme of being about comfortable love and the desire to adventure alongside another person—something, for better or worse, we all find ourselves needing in 2018. That theme coupled with the patient guitar melodies and warm tones unfolds like a daydream.

The band recorded the single at Chicago’s Experimental Sound Studio, with Maurisak taking on the role of engineer and producer. Doug Saltzman (Gia Margaret, Denmark Vessey, Mos Def) mixed and mastered the track.



Take your first listen to “Northern States” before the official release on Friday, November 23rd.


You can catch The Edwards performing the song live at Sleeping Village, along with Pooky, Sun Cop, Thee Casual Hex, plus a DJ set from Cadien Lake James on Tuesday, November 27th. Tickets are only $5 and proceeds go to
Our Music, My Body- more info here.

Keep up with The Edwards on Bandcamp and Instagram.

PREMIERE: "American Trap" by Those Far Out Arrows

Those Far Out Arrows

Those Far Out Arrows

This Friday, Omaha’s Those Far Out Arrows will release their second album via High Dive Records. Ahead of the November 2nd release of Part Time Lizards we’re sharing the band’s next single “American Trap,” which you can stream below.

Talking about the song, guitarist and vocalist Evan Keelan-White says, “‘American Trap’ sends a clear message about what's happening in our world today. There's no hiding the content and the intentionality of the lyrics. We encourage everyone to avoid the American trap, which can manifest in unique ways from person to person. The ‘American dream’ has failed so many generations of Americans...lies, deceit, and broken promises.”

Keep up with Those Far Out Arrows on Facebook and pre-order the album here.

PREMIERE: “FUTURE.SUPER.SAVIORS" by The Bombats

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Ahead of this year’s official Halloween Bomb Bash, The Bombats are releasing not one, but three songs: “FUTURE,” “SUPER,” and “SAVIORS.”

Lead vocalist and guitarist of The Bombats, Josh Boyer, says the title for this three-part single came to mind shortly after the group had finished the last record. “I got really into this idea of the triptych and wanted to challenge myself to write something based around three parts: exposition, climax, and resolution. I was also reading a lot about The Hero’s Journey wanted to make something that played out like a movie,” he says.

After he had the concept in mind, Boyer set out to figure out how to manifest the concepts both musically and thematically, while staying true to the three parts. “It became a whole page of these word associations: Future-Super-Saviors, Bubblegum-Frantic-Epic, Dracula-Wolfman-Frankenstein, Me-Mike-Doug.” Once the writing process had begun with the brainstorm of different word associations, Boyer says a lot of the initial concepts stayed intact for the remainder of the recording process. “‘Future’ became a guitar riffy, pop punk song with a rigid structure. ‘Super’ became a loose, drum heavy, noise monster. And ‘Saviors’ became this bolted together, bass led, finale,” he adds.

Throughout this process, the group says they were still working out what kind of band they wanted to be, but by recording this single trilogy themselves, that gave them the chance to continuously explore their sound and vision. “We recorded it ourselves which gave us a lot of opportunity (maybe too much) to go back and change things constantly. We took a long time making this because we were always trying new things and figuring out what we didn’t want to do,” Boyer says. “Sonically, it’s this exploration of us trying to become a better band and lyrically I was taking all these things I didn’t like about myself and kind of shutting the door on them. It’s pretty cathartic to yell and stomp around about that sort of thing,” he adds.

Now that you have the inside scoop on the new single, take your first listen to the three songs below, and grab your tickets to the Bomb Bash on 10/30 here.


Keep up with The Bombats on Facebook // Instagram // Bandcamp

PREMIERE: “Asleep On The Floor" By Momma's Boy

Today we’re sharing an exclusive first listen to “Asleep On The Floor” from Kansas City’s Momma’s Boy.

Artwork: Jared Bajkowski, @abeardedbassist Photography: Skylar Jaynes Cowdry @skylarcowdry

Artwork: Jared Bajkowski, @abeardedbassist
Photography: Skylar Jaynes Cowdry @skylarcowdry

The self-produced track was recorded and mixed in the band’s attic rehearsal space by bassist Jared Bajkowski and mastered by Shy Boys member Ross Brown. Talking about the song, the band says, “At its core, ‘Asleep On The Floor’ explores the exasperation and pain that comes with having said ‘sorry’ so many times that it’s lost all meaning — even if you still mean it.”

The single reflects the band’s rough-around-the-edges, made-in-the-midwest ethos via its lo-fi production style and western-flavored arrangement. Combining the raspy croon of singer Shaun Crowley with acoustic guitars and distant, dive bar guitars, the track conjures an atmosphere scattered with empty bottles and the perfume of regret, giving listeners a glimpse at the pain and futility of the worn out apology.

Now that you know the backstory, take your first listen of the song below!


Catch Momma’s Boy on tour this month in a city near you (dates here) and keep up with them on Facebook + Instagram + Twitter

PREMIERE: Chameleon Treat "Honey Bee" Music Video

Today we have your first look at Chameleon Treat’s video for “Honey Bee,” which is the first song off the duo’s upcoming album BASKETPUSHER.

Chameleon Treat is Andrew Kruske and Jake Edwards

Chameleon Treat is Andrew Kruske and Jake Edwards

Andrew Kruske, who makes up one half of Chameleon Treat, says that he and his counterpart Jake Edwards were influenced by bands like Slowdive, Cocteau Twins, and Spiritualized for this album. “I really just wanted to make a solid set of straight up ‘dream pop’ songs. This song in particular is about avoiding a bee that was trapped in my house…it’s about me going way out of my way for an insect, essentially. Through that lonely bug, the song broadly explores empathy (for bugs and/or human beings), stress, and avoidance,” Kruske says.

After writing the song, Kruske and Edwards were tasked with the challenge of making a visual accompaniment to the track on a very low budget. “We were faced with the struggle many independent bands are faced with: how can we make an interesting video with a budget of 0 dollars?” In order to do so, the band had to get resourceful and put in some remarkable DIY effort into the project. The answer involved a “rickety-yet-stylish” tandem bicycle, an oversized stuffed animal, and a lot of patience. “Aside from a few bad snowboarding videos in high school, this video was my first attempt at filming or editing something. It took a lot of planning, guessing, and tinkering, but I’m definitely happy with the end result,” Kruske says.

Kruske even got creative and crafty enough to add some special effects to the video. “The visual effects for the bridge section of the song were produced with an overhead projector and a variety of dyes. I attempted to give a visual indicator of a 60’s psychedelic feeling, in order to enhance the Beatles-sque vibe of the instrumentation of this section of the song. I’ve been consistently drawn to ‘liquid light’ as an art form, and I definitely want to work with it more in the future,” they say.

Although Kruske really spearheaded the efforts behind this video, he also had some help from his friends he says. “I’d also like to give a few shout outs really quick: first, to Emily Henley for playing the harp on this song. My good friend Susie helped me out while filming wherever I needed it. Jake [Edwards] was also there to help out and play the drums in a few of the shots near the middle.”

Now that you have the background story, check out the finished product for yourself with the exclusive premiere of “Honey Bee” below!

Keep up with Chameleon Treat on Facebook


PREMIERE: "Knockout" by Seasaw Music Video

We’re bringing you the first look at Seasaw’s brand new music video for “Knock Out,” just in time for the ANCHR Showcase this Friday.

Meg Golz and her photo-collaged twin

Meg Golz and her photo-collaged twin

The video stars Seasaw’s Meg Golz and Eve Wilczewski, and the duo describes the video as a visual examination of a battle taking place within one’s psyche. “The song is an arresting narrative of a person dealing with depression and the video that accompanies the song brings the reality of that fight to life,” they say. In the video, Golz is seen boxing a life-sized, photo-collage replica of herself, fighting to reveal the beauty within. Eve Wilczewski sculpted the replica herself, and was able to make the collage using large format newsprints printed by Parabo Press. Leading up to the filming of the video, Golz was kept in the dark about what the finished project would look like, and the fight scene with the replica was all shot in one take.

Talking about her experience filming the video, Golz says, “In order to prepare for this role, I took an hour long one-on-one boxing lesson (at Canvas Club Boxing in Madison - where we shot this video), where I did high intensity training, along with learning the correct form and pattern for boxing sequences. I'm not an athlete, so it was truly one of the hardest athletic experiences I've had. At one point in the class, I was running back and forth across the gym with a medicine ball and my coach shouted ‘I know you can do better than this! GO! GO! GO! GO!’ He told me after the fact, that he wanted me to have this experience to really understand how hard a boxer trains every day. It was seriously so intense, but definitely made me feel ready and comfortable to box in the ring!”


Now that you know the background, check out the music video below, which was filmed by Mike Palzkill and directed and edited by Nate Chappell.

Get your tickets to see Seasaw in Chicago this Friday, along with Dream Version and Uma Bloo here.

Seasaw Facebook // Twitter // Instagram

PREMIERE: "Don't Wanna Hurt Anymore" by Anthony Worden Music Video

Photo by Joshua De Lanoit

Photo by Joshua De Lanoit

Today we have your first look at the brand new video for Anthony Worden’s song “Don't Wanna Hurt Anymore.” The single comes from Worden’s sophomore album, Slouching Towards Tomorrow, out September 21st.

Talking about the video, Worden says, “The concept for the video was primarily based upon 70s late night talk show appearances because the tune sort of has that same vibe. Shows like the 'Midnight Special' and the 'Old Grey Whistle Test' were the main inspiration but there are so many other wacky shows (especially German ones) that featured some of the biggest pop acts of the times that also inspired the video. We were able to work with a local vintage stylist, hair dresser, and theatre to pull this off and I think we're all happy with the end result. Its fun to play a little dress up and make-believe that we are in another time." 

Check out the exclusive premiere of “Don’t Wanna Hurt Anymore” below!

Worden will be celebrating the new album with a release show on 9/21 in Iowa City- get details here, and catch him on the road in October:

10/10-Columbia, MO

10/11-St. Louis, MO 

10/12-Memphis, TN

10/13-Nashville, TN

10/14-Nashville, TN

10/17-Oxford, MS

10/18-New Orleans, LA

10/19-Jackson, MS 

10/20-Shreveport, LA

10/21-Oklahoma City, OK

10/22-Witchita, KS

10/23-Kansas City, KS

10/24-Lawrence, KS

10/25-Omaha, NE

Follow Worden on Facebook + Instagram + Twitter

PREMIERE: "White Noise" by Martin Van Ruin

Today we have your exclusive first listen of "White Noise" from Chicago's Martin Van Ruin. The track previews the group's upcoming album Current Day, out August 17th.  Frontman Derek Nelson of the band describes the process behind the track below.

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Sometimes, songs can come together in a moment and it’s tough to keep your pen moving as fast as your ideas. “White Noise” wasn’t one of those. The chorus melody came first, and then it was written over a bunch of months, almost passively. I listen to white noise (the real thing, not the song) sometimes to focus — it’s meant to calm you down, but if it’s on full blast, it can actually be hard to hear your own thoughts. That’s how the internet can feel sometimes. I guess that’s what the song’s about.

Once the idea came through, the song came together pretty quickly with the band. I love what Sarah [Goldstein] did vocally; and I love [Brian] Sharpe’s guitar solo on the final recording. As soon as we heard a mix, we knew it’d probably be the first song on the release. 

Tune into the song below, and come celebrate the new album with Martin Van Ruin on August 17th; they'll be performing at Fitzgerald's and you can grab tickets here. 

Keep up with Martin Van Ruin on Facebook 

PREMIERE: "The Wild What" by Oku

Today we have your first listen of "The Wild What" by Oku, the project of songwriter, musician and producer Alex Katsaropoulos. Below, Katsaropoulos vividly describes the winding journey behind his debut single. 

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This song began over 3 years ago when the chord progression to a The War on Drugs song called “An Ocean Between the Waves” really caught my attention. It was a simple back and forth between D major and E minor for the entire song but that feeling of constant flux was something I really enjoyed. It’s funny to look back at the water imagery of the song that inspired “The Wild What” because the subject matter and title of the track came from another source.

Around the same period of time I was reading a book called “Things That Are” by Amy Leach, and in the book there’s an essay and an idea called "The Wild What." Essentially The Wild What embodies possibilities and potential, anything in the ether and the unknown. I thought that this was a perfect metaphor for the start of a relationship when things are fresh and it could be anything. At the time I had just started seeing someone so it felt right. To go deeper, that unknown can be like the ocean: exciting but often terrifying and overwhelming. I for sure was feeling that in the moment so that’s where all of the water imagery came back into play.

Originally the song was a lot happier the way the chords were played but as the rest of the album developed it was clear that it might need a slightly darker tone. So I changed the way the first chord was shaped to give it a tone that wasn’t as bright. It also had a totally different chorus for a while that felt too happy, so I rewrote that in the pre-production stage. We recorded the nylon string guitar and the drums at a studio called the Mixin' Administration in Chicago and then the vocals were tracked at my home studio in Andersonville.

All the pieces were there but something was missing, it didn’t have that THING that made the track stand out. Jonathan Alvin, the producer, suggested a string quartet for the chorus to try to mimic sinking into the waves, almost like drowning. I thought about recording live strings, but felt that I wanted something weirder and slightly more alien than usual. So after I wrote the part I began finding audio online of each note being played by different people and created a strange sample instrument with them that I could play. And that’s where the uncanny nature of the strings comes from.

Another thing that really draws your attention in this song is the distorted and pitched up vocals, which is a consistent theme throughout the rest of the album. Some of the really high parts are me singing the note in falsetto and then adding a higher octave to it. And that’s pretty much how the song came together. It reflects a lot of other ideas on the album as far as production and style goes but it’s unique in that it’s the only track that somewhat resembles a love song.

Now that you've got the backstory, dive into the exclusive premiere of "The Wild What" from Oku's debut album, which is due out this September.

Keep up with Oku on Instagram + Facebook, and grab tickets to see him at Tonic Room on 7/29 here