This week in the Midweek Music Mix we look at the latest releases from Sonic Hz, Spoutnique and Electric Lawnmower.
Sonic Hz – Resurgence
Is it possible for an artist to be considered ahead of their time if that time was more than 30 years ago? That’s the first question that popped into my head while listening to Resurgence, the second full-length album from the Moncton-based retro synth project Sonic Hz. With all the throwbacks we’re seeing in movies and streaming programs paying skillful respect to the looks, the sounds and the styles of the 1970s and 1980s – a movement defined largely by the Duffer Brother’s Netflix blockbuster Stranger Things – Sonic Hz appear to have got in on the ground floor of this latest audio/visual trend. Their self-titled debut release arrived less than a month after ST premiered in 2016 and captured the era’s sonic esthetic perfectly. So well in fact, that it would be hard to believe the album was simply thrown together following a week of binge-watching. But Stranger Things have happened.
As the title may suggest, Resurgence could be a nod to this current wave of nostalgia or a tongue-in-cheek confirmation of Sonic Hz’s pole position in this race back in time. Either way, it’s another strong collection of retro sounds made even stronger by guest appearances from Allumette, Ryan Hillier and Ashley McNally.
Spoutnique – Solace
A new release from Spoutnique is always worth your attention. Tucked away in the upper north-west corner of the province, the Edmundston-based ensemble began turning heads back in 2017 with the release of their debut full-length My Blue Sky Turns Teal Vol. 1. Since then, Spoutnique have surfaced occasionally to play shows in Moncton, Saint John and Fredericton but have managed to remain a bit of a mystery due to their infrequent treks around the province.
But a band doesn’t have to be road hungry to write and release good music. Solace, the group’s second full-length release is just as adventurous as their debut, gliding effortlessly between R&B, disco, dreamy folk and progressive rock influences with a rare sense of continuity. It’s also the band’s first album sung almost completely in French. With too many standout tracks to mention, all I can really say about Solace is that it’s an album you need to hear and one of the province’s strongest releases of 2019. Give it a listen. Avoir une écoute.
Electric Lawnmower – Charmed
Saint John’s self-proclaimed “experimental as fuck” sound project Electric Lawnmower has a new single out. Charmed is power in simplicity. Composed as three movements, Charmed begins with a free flowing melody line that shifts into a repetitive phrase before breaking apart into a structureless passage. Birth, monotony and death? Did they just sum up human existence? Power in simplicity.
Send us your Music!
If you are a New Brunswick artist or group, have new music on the way and would like to be considered for a future edition of Midweek Music Mix, send us the details at gridcitymagazine(at)gmail.com