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The Crowleys – “Sewer Drain” [Listen]
Down the sewer drain
Fall my tears like rain
Down the lonely path
I will go at last

Hamilton’s psych-rock group The Crowleys give us another taste of what we can expect from their upcoming debut full-length album. Released with local label Wel-Pel Records, it’s one of my most anticipated local albums this year. The band shares that this new track “covers similar dystopian themes explored on previous singles, ‘Lampshade’ and ‘Somnia’ by touching on the feeling of futility that is born from living in a capitalist society.”

The Crowleys. Photo by Rachel Connell.

Delta Days – “Graveyard Party” [Listen]
So here we are now
I’m losing my mind

Hamilton rockers Delta Days have matured and evolved as a band, and just dropped Fast Forward, their follow-up to the 2018 album, A Round Town. Released as part of the Wel-Pel Records roster, the record was produced by Wayne Petti and Michael Keire, recorded at Threshold Studio, and engineered by Michael Keire and Cohen Wylie, with additional recording at Fort Rose. A real Hamilton rock & roll dream team! A long time in the making, the band shares, “These songs [have] been with us for so long. To hell and back. We’re happy to finally set them free into the world.”

Delta Days

Ellis In Transit – “Crashing” [Listen]
‘Cause I’m crashing
Lying on a hotel floor
I’m counting the waves

Canadian-British band now based in Hamilton, Ellis In Transit, shows another side of themselves with new single, “Crashing.” It’s a dreamier, gentler sound than some of their other tracks, but still maintaining the core strength of their signature sound. There are so many emerging local bands that I haven’t got the chance to see live yet due to the pandemic, and Ellis In Transit is one I’m looking forward to experiencing. Catch the band locally at The Corktown on August 5 and as part of the free Eclectic Local concert series outside The Gasworks on August 13.

Ellis In Transit

Ten Minute Detour – “On We Go” [Listen]
On we go
Fading slow
Getting lost
In songs we know

Another local band on my radar since the pandemic – arriving via Calgary, Ten Minute Detour has made Hamilton their home for a few years now. Getting back into the groove of live shows, their BEACHES & BOLOS tour is afoot, and they just took the stage locally at Mills Hardware for the first time, followed by a trip back to Calgary and then onto BC. Check out the live-off-the-floor session for “On We Go.”

Ten Minute Detour

Melissa Marchese – “Sunshine” [Listen]
And I let it all in
Like sunshine

Hamilton-based singer-songwriter Melissa Marchese shares her second solo single, “Sunshine.” Her positivity radiates through the track and it’s a laid back summer vibe to kick back and enjoy. Melissa has traveled to India to practice Ashtanga Yoga, and shares about the song’s inspiration: “In a sense, India and my time practicing at the shala has saved my life over and over again, and I will be forever grateful. This song is dedicated to my Ashtangis around the world.”

Melissa Marchese. Photo by Brent Perniac.

Ariana Fig – “Guilty Pleasure” [Listen]
Catch my breath
But I still took the fall
‘Cause you made me feel like I was worth it all

Local singer-songwriter Ariana Fig continues to level up with each new release. After a strong start to the year with “Maroon,” which launched into her next era, Ariana shares “Guilty Pleasure.” She shares that it’s her favourite song that she has written so far, and it’s definitely mine too. It’s like the score to the opening credits to a feel-good indie movie. Ariana shares that the song “is about not sugar coating what you really want even when you know it’s bad for you. People, places, memories. We all like to ponder on these thoughts for some time and beat ourselves up over the ‘one that got away’. I think there’s something beautiful about accepting your flaws and desires, which is what I wanted to emulate with this song.”

Ariana Fig. Photo by Steph Montani.

Andrea Arthur – “Made For Love” [Listen]
We’ll go and paint the town
I don’t care who sees

I love a good pop jam! Hamilton-based musician Andrea Arthur delivered her latest track, a bop for your summer playlists. The artist shares that for her, “music serves as a tool for her to process, grow and learn as an individual whilst simultaneously connecting with her listeners on a similar path.”

Andrea Arthur. Photo by Steph Montani.

Isabella Chiarini – “The Way Out” [Listen]
So I’m gonna let you go
Don’t let the door hit you on the way out

18-year-old, emerging pop singer-songwriter on the local scene, Isabella Chiarini, shares new single, “The Way Out,” which she describes as “about finally leaving a toxic relationship.” IsabelIa continues to put herself out there as she pursues her passion for music. She shares, “I love to continuously learn and grow within my music.”

Isabella Chiarini

LTtheMonk – “UK Rappers” [Listen]
Hard with the banter
Soft with the candour

London-born, Hamilton-based MC LTtheMonk continues to deliver excellent tracks to keep his momentum going following the release of his third album, On The Wall, released last summer. The beats always go hard, but it’s LT’s passion and precision for his lyricism and delivery that are always front and centre. This track especially shows that off, along with his signature confidence.

LTtheMonk. Photo by @becausedesignmatters.

S.O.A.P. – “Rome” [Listen]
The first five years was just practice
Raise the bar, batting average

Toronto rapper Scribe and Hamilton-based producer Onglish are S.O.A.P. (Scribe & Onglish Aren’t Perfect). This has been a really exciting musical partnership to watch – from Scribe’s great feature on Onglish’s 2019 album Wav Pocket, to their debut release, S.O.A.P., in 2020. Describing their process, the musicians say that over the years they have “developed a culture of risk & trust, allowing their music to become a single-minded effort, rather than just matching bars to beats.”

S.O.A.P. – “Rome”

The Strongman Blues Remedy – “I Like To Ride” [Listen]
Some people run
Some people walk
Some people fly just to get by
I like to ride

Conceived by Hamilton-based blues musician Steve Strongman, the brand new blues collective, The Strongman Blues Remedy, features Steve Strongman, Harrison Kennedy, Dawn Tyler Watson, Steve Marriner, and Crystal Shawanda. Describing the process of a gathering together this top tier crop of talent, Steve says he “developed an album that touches on a wide cross-section of experiences and viewpoints. The result is an expansive 10-track album with one overarching message within: the best remedy for the world we’re living in right now is to fill it with music that celebrates life and focuses on the joys of being on the other side.” The collective gears up to release Volume 1 on June 17 with Stony Plain Records. Watch the official music video for “I Like To Ride.”

The Strongman Blues Remedy

kristin
ihearthamiltontour@gmail.com
Kristin Archer is the creator of I Heart Hamilton (www.ihearthamilton.ca), where she has blogged about experiences around her hometown since 2011, growing a social media presence along the way. Encouraging locals to “be a tourist in your own city,” she promotes arts and culture across her various social media platforms, blog, and weekly radio show on 93.3 CFMU.

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