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Category: pop music

A Venomously Delicious Blast of Dark Retro Powerpop From Cinema Hearts

If the idea of noir-tinged powerpop makes your pulse race, look no further than Cinema Hearts‘ debut short album Your Ideal, streaming at Bandcamp. Frontwoman Caroline Weinroth packs a ton of counterintuitive chord changes and impact into very compact spaces, typically under three minutes. Likewise, the rest of her band – guitarist Bartees Strange, bassist Max Nichols and drummer Nicholas King – keep things dead on target. Brevity notwithstanding, this is one of the best rock records of the year.

Weinroth gets off to a good start with the first track, Mirror, a roaring little anthem in 6/8 time which will resonate with anyone who’s ever dealt with a narcissist. Sarcasm reaches redline in the album’s title track, extending to the retro 60s soul melody and those goofy handclaps.

Weinroth goes back to 6/8 for Everyday Is a Day Without You: if Amy Allison had a thing for Lynchian pop ballads, she would have written this offhandedly slashing gem. Likewise, Can I Tell You I Love You has an Orbisonian Tex-Mex bittersweetness, complete with a surreal, icy baritone guitar solo.

The final cut is Sister, a starry, drifting Twin Peaks tableau. Let’s hope this band stays together and gives us more of the same.

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Robin Holcomb Brings Her Loaded Imagery and Tersely Crystallized Songcraft to Roulette

Few songwriters have the ability to crystallize a troubling image and build a tableau around it as memorably or tersely as pianist Robin Holcomb. She’s enjoyed a cult following since the 90s; she has an environmentalist streak and prefers shadowy melodies that draw as deeply on 19th century American front-porch folk and balladry as Charles Ives.

She had to go to the free state of Montana to find a studio to record her new solo album One Way or Another, streaming at Bandcamp. She’s playing the album release show on Nov 10 at around 9 at Roulette. Her husband, keyboardist Wayne Horvitz (of Presidents of the United States of America fame) opens the night at 8 in a duo performance with the brilliantly thoughtful bassoonist Sara Schoenbeck. You can get in for $25 in advance.

Holcomb’s new record is a mix of intimate versions of older songs, material from a couple of theatrical projects and a couple of covers. If anything, the songs are crystallized to a finer diamond finish than before: most of them clock in at under three minutes, some considerably less.

She opens with the title track (an original, not the Blondie hit), a spare spacious, gospel-tinged reflection. “Remember learning to crawl as you stagger out under the weight of the world, one foot it starts to fall,” Holcomb intones with her usual graceful understatement.

Track two is simply titled Waltz, Holcomb building a a distant sense of foreboding with her sparse, modal melody and imagery to match, a big-sky tableau with “nary a place to bury the bones.” Holcomb reinvents Stephen Foster’s Hard Times Come Again No More with tightly clustering phrases that bring to mind Dawn Oberg.

Doc Pomus’ I’ve Got That Feeling comes across as minimalist Carole King, at least until Holcomb really pounces on it after the second chorus. She shifts between gospel resonance and Carol Lipnik phantasmagoria in Once: the Steely Dan references and the trick ending are spot-on.

Likewise, Holcomb works uneasy Carla Bley harmonies over a jaunty Appalachian dance beat in A Lazy Farmer Boy, playing up the underlying grimness in the rustic tale. She builds the album’s most hauntingly allusive narrative in I’m Gonna Lose Again: the way she brings the story full circle will give you chills. It’s one of the best songs of the year.

“Don’t confuse me with my laughter, I won’t return the morning after,” Holcomb reminds in Copper Bottom, a key track from her Utopia Project about early 20th century cults.

“The mirror allows what the darkness divides,” she reveals in Rockabye, a subtly venomous, Tom Waits-ish lullaby for a drunken abuser. The darkness and regret is buried much deeper in the hypnotic circles of Shining.

Holcomb goes back to waltz time for Electrical Storm: the devil’s also in the details for that one. She mutes the absence and sense of sheer abandonment in the light-fingered Britfolk cadences of another Foster song, Old Dog Tray. The final cut, The Point of it All provides a wary, broodingly detailed coda for this inviting and often haunting record.

A Deliciously Irreverent Plandemic-Era Update on a Long-Lost Song Cycle

Johannes Muhlberg was a talented South African pianist and songwriter. His specialty was clever jazz-inflected cabaret. Beginning in 1968, he began work on a musical theatre project, but abandoned it and never completed it before his tragic death in 1982. He never released a recording.

Almost thirty years later, his son Victor and his family were able to locate the original cassette tapes and sketches for the musical. Victor, a songwriter himself, decided to pick up where his father had left off. When South Africa was locked down in the 2020 plandemic, he decided to change the plotline to a series of reflections on alienation, atomization and loss, told from several points of view.

The new project began to take shape when he teamed up with guitarist Clive Ridgway, who pulled together a diversely talented cast of singers and musicians to bring it to life. The result is Twelve Days of Song, which Victor Muhlberg considers a work in progress rather than a finished album. Fortunately for us, he’s put the songs up as a youtube playlist. With dad’s music and son’s words, it’s a witheringly funny, deliciously transgressive portrait of the here and now. This is not a depressing collection: Muhlberg’s characters stand their ground, resist and have a good laugh in the process.

Roger Maitland sings Valentines Ballad, a chilling chessgame parable set to a slinky noir cabaret backdrop, “On a board captured by silent coup…resistance from those you revile.” Tony Drake swing the piano line; Ridgway adds spare, distantly Romany-flavored guitar.

Bev Scott-Brown takes over the mic with a resolute bittersweetness in I Say Goodbye, a calm broadside against the hated Green Pass vaxxport: “The state will not impose on me its arbitrary goal, nor take me down the wretched road of segregation and control.”

Who Wants to Work, with Godfrey Johnson on vocals, is a slyly amusing, ragtime-tinged look at universal basic income and its sinister implications. Ridgway sings Pipers Tune, a savagely satirical view of “The covidian cult on standby to feed the beast of the noble lie.”

Johnson returns for a duet with Regina Malan in The Circus Show, an irresistibly over-the-top, brassy, Broadway-esque capsule of the clowns orchestrating the lockdown drama. Next, he takes up The Fictional Tale of Mr. Barb, a spot-on, amusing, waltzing portrait of oligarchical greed and technocratic hubris: “I’ve a soft spot for control…as I herd the population, to the cusp of my creation.”

Scott-Brown takes the mic again in I Wonder Why, an understatedly plaintive portrait that anyone who searched for other noncompliant voices over the last 31 months can relate to. Ridgway picks up his acoustic guitar for It’s Just Not ‘Just,’ bringing to mind Phil Ochs with a litany of curfews and mandates and Trojan horses, trace-and-track and endless divide-and-conquer schemes. “Once the prey has made its way inside the trap, it’s unlikely it’s ever coming back.”

Selim Kagee lends his operatic pipes to A Requiem, a sober, baroque-tinged hymn of sorts, reflecting on the victims of the first bioweapon and then the lockdowns. Johnson channels a calm defiance in The Freedom in Me, “A season distorted by digital chime” where “A city so smart has the soul of a robot with steel in its heart.”

Undeniably Mine was inspired by the scientists and doctors who brought their science and sanity to the Better Way conference in the UK. Ridgway builds a spiky blend of guitars and mandolin in Colourful Day, a celebration of the diversity in the freedom movement

Scott-Brown channels hope against hope in Midnight & Moonlight, a gorgeous, starkly fingerpicked guitar waltz in a Cry Me a River vein:

It’s stranger than fiction with danger so grave
Leading the way to the new world so brave
Lies and illusions, perceptions untrue
Breaking the faith of the things you once knew

Muhlberg offers guarded optimism at the end. The playlist concludes with the wedding song When Two People Fall in Love, sung by Penny Radsma. Even more than the music, what’s most inspiring about these songs is that Muhlberg found a talented cast with an equal commitment to freedom to bring them to life.

Thanks to Mark Crispin Miller, whose must-read daily news feed is basically the other New York Music Daily.

Stealing a Halloween Playlist From a Reliably Hilarious Source Here in Town

Thanks to Daisy Moses for making New York Music Daily’s job a lot easier today. Her Substack page is one of the most entertaining places on the web. She’s a native New Yorker who writes in a faux Minnie Pearl vernacular, but beneath the cornpone persona is a ferocious intellect. Her crime scene analysis of the mysterious death of Anne Heche went viral a couple of months ago. And she’s funny beyond belief.

Her taste in music runs toward the retro. Since she loves Halloween as much as this blog does, today’s next-to-last installment in the annual, October-long celebration here is the playlist she just put up today, which you can spin here. She’s got something for everybody: 50s cartoon stuff like the Zanies’ Mad Scientist and Nervus Norvus’ novelty hit, Transfusion; Zombie Walk, the Magics’ alternative to the 60s dance crazes; a Scottish murder ballad, and punk era favorites by the Cramps and Siouxsie & the Banshees.

And the obscure songs are killer. Check out Sheldon Allman’s lounge lizard parody Children’s Day At the Morgue; folksinger Oscar Brand doing The Hearse Song; The Cannibal Song, by franken-crooner Thurl Ravenscroft, and Stinky Picnic‘s If You’re Dead, a folk noir counterpart to Maria Gallagher’s version of the Clash classic The Guns of Brixton.

Three Powerful Women From Heavy Rock Join Forces in a Surprisingly Subtle, Poignant Project

One of the strangest and most distantly haunting albums of the year is the debut album by the Erinyes. Not to be confused with the punkish Berlin trio, this is a new group. Their debut album – streaming at Spotify – is a concept record of songs that look at pain from a distance. You could call this the heavy record the Motels never made.

Three strong, individualistic frontwomen from the world of heavy rock – Justine Daaé, from French death metal-lite band Elyose; Mizuho Lin of Brazilian group Semblant, and Italian band Kalidia‘s Nicoletta Rosellini – blend and contrast their voices in a collection that transcends stadium rock.

The central theme is angst, more or less: a love rivalry is involved, although it’s hardly over-the-top. While all the singers have versatile chops, their voices are distinctive. Daaé brings the fullscale plaintiveness, Lin edges toward grit and Rosellini is the big belter.

The three women join in a brief, icy chorale in the brief opening theme, Life Needs Love, rising to full-blown High Romantic angst. The second track is Drown the Flame. Keyboardist Antonio Agate’s brooding, purposeful suspense film orchestration anchors the music in reality as guitarist Aldo Lonobile goes tapping up into the stratosphere over Andrea Buratto’s methodical bass and Michele Sanna’s drums. Daaé sings what’s basically a catchy early 80s minor-key new wave pop hit in heavy disguise.

Lin, who has a grittier delivery, sings On My Way to Love, a stormy, hauntingly allusive ballad with a momentary operatic break from the women. Rosellini takes over lead vocals in Betrayed, a similarly bittersweet, enigmatic, early 80s-flavored number, Lonobile adding ornate bagpipe-like riffage.

Guitar crunch contrasts with swirly organ and blustery synth as the women blend voices in Death By a Broken Heart, the energy climbing toward fullscale angst but never quite getting there.

Where Do We Go is a gorgeous vintage 70s soul ballad subsumed in the flames of a sunset going down on a churning ocean. The band go back to four-on-the-floor new wave era anthem territory with It’s Time, then the intensity rises again in Someday, the album’s most darkly turbulent number.

They could have left the hip-hop influences out of My Kiss Goodbye and it would have been a lot stronger as a stomping power ballad. The group shift between dissociative, trickily rhythmic verse and big hooky chorus in Paradise and follow with Take Me, an unlikely successful blend of Asbury Park piano rock and moody European stadium bombast.

They close with the album’s most towering, majestic, art-rock oriented cut, You And Me Against the World, which despite all the heroic overtones seems like a pyrrhic victory. May these chthonic deities stick together and put out another record as good as this one.

Fans of the Dark Stray Far Enough From the Expected to Disturb You

The reason why caricatures aren’t frightening is that they’re too obvious. Other than extreme cases like Hitler and Klaus Schwab, genuinely evil people tend to be as multi-dimensional as everyone else. What we perceive as most troubling is when something is just a little off.

Fans of the Dark play crunchy pop music with loud guitars and macabre themes. Powerpop as invented by Americans and Brits doesn’t sound anything like this, and the metal edge doesn’t fit the mold. That’s why the Swedish band’s new album Suburbia – streaming at Spotify – is today’s installment in the ongoing, monthlong Halloween celebration here. To their credit, they’ve taken a bunch of well-worn ideas and twisted them into a strange and original sound that shouldn’t work at all, but somehow they make it happen.

The first track, Night of the Living Dead, actually doesn’t reference the movie. Switch out Oscar Bromvall’s distorted guitars and the crazed volleys of tapping for synths, and you’d have Blondie or Donna Summer. And it’s not a stupid song: frontman Alex Falk channels smalltown alienation as metaphor for something more sinister.

The second track, The Pirates of Maine is even weirder despite its catchiness. Drummer Freddie Allen and bassist Rickard Gramfors shift imperceptibly from a muted slink to a harder drive in what seems to be a shot at a doomed seafaring anthem that has absolutely nothing to to with the time-honored Maine maritime song tradition.

From there they move to a surreal mashup of brisk new wave pop, soccer stadium stomp and a little spacerock in Fantasia. Sick! Sick Sick! is a linguistic joke: the number of the beast in this song is just about up, although you wouldn’t necessarily know that until the lively, bagpipe-ish twin guitars back away and then the band hit a relentless viking gallop. Fright Night also does not reference a film (the cheesy 80s flick actually had a memorable Brad Fiedel soundtrack). But it does quote from a certain iconic Iron Maiden tune, if only lyrically.

In yet another strange stroke of fate, the band’s theme song is a breakup anthem, with a punk rock strut beneath the big heavy riffs. The band charge through the wide-angle chords of The Goblin King and wind up the album with Restless Soul, the album’s second big epic, which seems to be a medieval murder mystery. Diehard metal fans may well dismiss this as lightweight; likewise, some pop people won’t be able to handle the volume. Their loss.

More Savagely Funny Protest Songs, Plandemic Parodies and New Videos From Turfseer

In the spring of 2020, it didn’t take long for songwriter Lewis Papier to get wise to the plandemic. He was outraged – as more artists should have been. So he and a rotating cast of hired guns – who were no doubt overjoyed to play his savagely satirical, often ridiculously funny songs – worked steadily on a series of singles. Recording under the name Turfseer, he would eventually put them up at Soundcloud as a whole album, Scamdemic Songs, in the fall of 2021.

This blog discovered them through Mark Crispin Miller’s invaluable News From Underground feed this past February, when there were a grand total of 33 songs on the playlist. It has since grown to 44! What’s more, there’s a growing collection of videos at Turfseer’s youtube channel, which mysteriously has not been censored. There’s at least one seriously LOL moment in all of them. If you’re bummed out by the prospect of more restrictions and endless doom porn, do yourself a favor and clipgrab these gems before they disappear. Watching the playlist for the first time, there was already a Youtube lethal injection propaganda pop-up ad in place by the third video. Then it disappeared…but sure enough, it was back for the song 1984 Is Here.

As a songwriter, Papier has an erudite grasp on a ton of styles: ornate art-rock, classic country, Beatlesque pop and more. The first of the videos is the Trust the Science Rag. ‘”You must refute and persecute all those who disagree,” Papier insists, over a rollicking piano tune. The video is a particularly apt Fatty Arbuckle/Buster Keaton silent film edit.

Is that one of the Chinese “big whites” spraying an empty bedroom with nameless toxic dust in the video for the darkly orchestrated, ELO-tinged Church of the Pandemic Mind?

The Virus Is My God, a southwestern gothic spoof of Covid true believers, has an irresistibly funny faux spaghetti western plotline: the devil is in the details!

The juxtaposition of the Salem Witch Trials and plandemic imagery in 1692 Was a Very Good Year, another ELO-esque gem, is spot-on. Sheeple University is a doctrinaire, churchy faux-Christian pop parody of wokester extremism: “Learn to bully, throw a fit, just obey and submit.”

The Commandant is one of the most chilling of the big art-rock numbers, with visuals to match: “We invented a monster that you’ll never see, how do you like that you’ll never be free?” O Holy Roman, another art-rock anthem, is just as metaphorically loaded. Turfseer’s insight into historical basis of plandemic brainwashing runs deep, underscored by the eerie folk-pop of The Ballad of Typhoid Mary.

Just Too Good to Be True, a country song, reflects the wave of deaths that followed the 2021 kill shot rollout. Another one from this past summer, You Didn’t Recognize Me, is a gorgeously bittersweet Amy Rigby soundalike, but with one of the most sinister undercurrents in the playlist

The most inspiring number on the original playlist, Forever Freedom Brigade, pops up in the middle of the videos. The Emperor’s New Clothes reflects the despondency that swept over the world before the freedom movement started growing toward critical mass.

Once in awhile Turfseer’s parody extends to music as well, as with the operatic spoof Vaccine, My Love; One Trick Pony, where he makes fun of lite FM piano pop; and In Toba Tek Singh, a searing Bollywood tale of the ravages of plandemic-induced poverty. The musicianship is strong all the way through: once in awhile there’s a sizzling solo, like the big guitar break in My Way Or the Highway Disease.

The playlist ends – at least at this point – on an optimistic note with a country song, Dawn of a New Day. And that, folks, is today’s installment of this month’s ongoing, daily Halloween celebration, which continues through the end of October. There will be more of the macabre, or at least something like it, here tomorrow.

Rogers & Butler Bring Their Erudite, Classic Riffage and Guitar Anthems to the Chelsea Piers

In terms of purist, catchy rock craftsmanship in 2022, Rogers & Butler’s new vinyl record Brighter Day – streaming at Bandcamp – is as good as it gets. Guitarist Stephen Butler’s American powerpop sensibility makes a good anchor for singer Edward Rogers’ more artsy, psychedelic blend of 70s Brummie rock, Bowie surrealism and more towering European-flavored sounds, from the Church to Oasis. Their six-stringer bandmate Don Piper’s production puts luscious guitar up front with the vocals, bass and drums in the back where they belong. The duo are opening for the brilliantly lyrical Amy Rigby on a killer twinbill on Oct 3 at 7:30 PM at City Winery; you can get in for $15.

Notwithstanding the bright chord changes and singalong melodies, there’s a frequent undercurrent of unease here, echoing Rogers’ work over the past several years. Although it’s likely that a lot of the songs here date from before the plandemic, themes of alienation and despair filter to the surface in places. They open with the title track, which comes across as beefed-up Big Star: “Six feet apart or six feet underground, the choice is yours to make,” Rogers rasps sarcastically.

Where Does the World Hide rises from a skittish midtempo new wave tune to a big nocturnal alienation anthem: “Every second’s a lifetime when no one ever returns your calls,” Butler confides. They follow with Last Reply, a distantly elegaic, Beatlesque piano ballad, Chris Carmichael overdubbing himself into a one-man string orchestra.

Spiced with Joe McGinty’s Fender Rhodes, Learn to Live Again is a more lithe, sparely arranged take on Willie Nile-style powerpop, a cynical chronicle dotted with plandemic imagery, “scarred stale reminders of where we’ve been.” It’s hardly optimistic.

Marmalade Eyes, a cautionary tale about a femme fatale, begins as a wary acoustic-electric waltz, then the band morph it into a steady powerpop update on 60s psych-pop. Over layers of guitar jangle, spare piano and floating mellotron, Rogers chronicles a carefree stroll along a main street of junk shops and t-shirt vendors in A Perfect Market Day. Yet beneath the surface, in the context of the events after March 2020, it’s heartbreaking. Who knew we would ever miss something as mundane as browsing in a vintage store?

The band follow Butler’s burning garage rock-tinged stomp Desire with Cabaret, a wistful Spanish guitar waltz by Rogers that wouldn’t be out of place on an early 70s Al Stewart record. The best song on the album is The Sun Won’t Shine, a haunting, death-fixated backbeat anthem that could be ELO from the latter part of that decade but with harder production values.

The band close the record with Oh Romeo, a Celtic ballad with an elegant interweave of acoustic guitar and mandolin, and then A Brand New Tomorrow, a Daytripper knockoff with extra guitar multitracks. It was fun to watch an early incarnation of the band pulling their show together about three years ago; it’s validating to see how well these two veteran tunesmiths complement each other.

Jessie Kilguss Brings Her Purist Tunesmithing and Subtle Lyrical Power to the Rockwood

Jessie Kilguss wrote Great White Shark in prison. We don’t know if the multi-instrumentalist lit-rock songwriter violated any of ex-Governor Andrew Cuomo’s insane 2020 antisocial distancing regulations, but she wasn’t in the slammer because of that. She actually walked out of jail that day. Full disclosure: she came up with the song while leading a songwriting class for prisoners.

It’s the first single on her new album What Do Whales Dream About at Night?, which is due to hit her Bandcamp page this weekend. It’s got stately, bittersweet ELO major/minor changes, Naren Rauch’s layers of jangly guitars mingling with Kilguss’ harmonium and soaring, subtly mapled vocals.

The rest of the record reflects Kilguss’ stature as one of the great tunesmiths to emerge from this city in the past decade. It’s her deepest dive into lush chamber pop, and her most lyrically opaque release to date: her narratives really draw you in. She paints a guardedly hopeful if surreal picture in the first track, House of Rain and Leaves over a distantly bucolic guitar backdrop: “The rules don’t apply to you, at least not mine,” she relates

Rauch teams with bassist Whynot Jansveld and drummer Brian Griffin for a Some Girls-era Stonesy drive in the second track, Outside, Kilguss channeling righteous anger as she reaches for the rafters. The Attacca Quartet‘s Nathan Schram is a one-man string section over increasingly brooding layers of jangle and clang in The Tiger’s Wife, a metaphorically-loaded tale.

Coyote Street is the big anthemic hit here, a vivid LA tableau which could be the Church at their late 80s peak with a woman out front. Kilguss took the inspiration for the elegantly orchestrated, swaying title track from Serhiy Zhadan’s poem Headphones, a reflection on psychologically escaping an earlier Ukrainian conflict. Kilguss finally drops her signature allusiveness for a witheringly direct look at how violence percolates downward.

The album’s longest, most lushly symphonic track is Sleepwalking Heart, a slow, Lou Reed-tinged existential view of the psychology of denial. She picks up the pace with the similarly Velvetsy Roman Candles and closes the record with You Were Never Really Here, a delicate, painterly detailed portrait of a doomed relationship, spiced with wistful glockenspiel. Listeners who’ve been entranced by Kilguss’ earlier and often more overtly dark work are going to love this. It’s one of the best albums of 2022.

Kilguss is playing the album release show with a string section at the downstairs room at the Rockwood on Sept 23 at 8:30 PM for $10. Onstage, she can be outrageously funny: check out her deliciously snarky dismissal of Ted-talk pretense.

Greta Keating Brings Her Catchy, Eclectic Tunesmithing to the Lower East Side

Although there’s a long history of family legacies in folk music around the world, and plenty of cross-generational jazz pollination, rock tends to die with the first generation. The good rock legacies are a very short list: the Dylans (Bob and Jakob), the Rigbys (Amy and Hazel), the Lennons (John and Sean), with the Allisons (Mose and Amy) at the top of the list if you count brilliance that transcends jazz and Americana.

Add the Keatings to that list. Greta Keating is the daughter of Matt Keating – whose prolific and darkly lyrical songwriting career spans janglerock and soul, and goes back to the 90s – and his wife Emily Spray, a somewhat less prolific songwriter but an equally breathtaking singer. In this case, the apple didn’t fall far. Greta Keating has a soaring voice, writes catchy, anthemic songs, has a flair for the mot juste and like her dad plays a number of instruments. She’s bringing those songs to the small room at the Rockwood on Sept 23 at 7 PM.

Also like her dad, she writes a lot of songs. Her Soundcloud page has a bunch, some which could fall into the bedroom-pop category, others which are more fleshed out with acoustic and electric guitars, judicious piano, organ and occasional synthesized strings.

Keating has a thing for starry, drifting Julee Cruise-like tableaux, and there are a bunch here, including It’s a Drug, Ain’t It Strange and Hungry Dog. My Perfect Man is torchier, in waltz time, as is The Cold Makes Me Think, a hazy, spacious piano ballad that brings to mind A. A. Williams.

Keating goes into opaque trip-hop in Betwixt and Between, then reaches for quietly venomous, cynical Lynchian pop vibe with 15-Year-Old Boy. Too Late to Lay could be an early Everything But the Girl song with more delicate vocals, while Head Down to My Toes is a determined adventure into big assertive anthemic stadium rock.

How Could You Be But You Were is a bittersweet, swing-tinged stroll. The best song on the page is Small As I Felt, where she raises the angst to redline over Orbisonian crescendos: it screams out for sweeping orchestral strings and a kettledrum.

A Girl With Cheeks Damp is another stunner, a brooding plunge into jazzy 70s soul. The funniest tune on the page is Adderall Song: crystal meth makes people do the craziest things, huh?

The rest of the many songs in this long playlist range from soul (Hard to Please), to driving, sarcastic rock (My Body Is Allergic); dreamy Stereolab sonics (Out of Nowhere) and fingersnapping Peggy Lee jazz (Shadow Shadow).

There’s even more on Keating’s youtube channel, including a Telecaster-driven powerpop shout-out to girl-bonding empowerment. If the future of New York rock tunesmithing is your thing, Keating’s songs will resonate with you.