By Kandel Kindred

Basement Revolver – “Words” [Listen]
Words are just words
“‘Words’ was written when I was in my last semester of university. I lived downtown and school was up on the mountain and somewhat inaccessible by bus. I was writing my honours psych thesis at the time, as well as many other papers, when it all began to feel meaningless. No matter what I said, in the end, words are just words, they can be stringed together to form something powerful but without context, they become as mundane and uncontrollable as one’s commute to and from school. Similarly, a paper is just a paper, a degree is just a degree, and there is so much more to life than the plans and the empires that we build for ourselves,” says Chrisy Hurn, vocalist and guitarist.

Basement Revolver
Basement Revolver

The Medicine Hat – “New Survival” [Listen]
You’ve held on for this long
Why lose hold now
Lodged beneath held synths and glistening guitars is the story of a struggle. Going through drastic changes in physical and emotional environments can cause fear. As artists, we tend to hide it behind our art, whether it be muddled into our visuals or melodies, it’s just beneath the surface, for you to discover.

The Medicine Hat
The Medicine Hat

Boy With An Atlas – “Only Heaven Knows” [Listen]
Why it does, only heaven knows
Lead singer Riley Ducharme’s spacey vocals make “Only Heaven Knows” a dreamy listen. Molding together gentle keys and echoing synths make an easy escape for the ear.

Shawn Kerr – “Waves” [Listen]
I’ll spend my days making waves, right back to you
“Waves,” the title track to Shawn Kerr’s debut EP is a fitting choice, with its peacefulness and melodic sways, making it feel like musical ocean waves (hence the name). Kerr intertwines simplistic echos and soft plucks to tell the lonesome little love story of two individuals going through some rough waters. [We also premiered the live video for this track here on I Heart Hamilton]

Arkells – “Drake’s Dad” [Listen]
And then met Drake’s dad
Told him we came from Hamilton
Electric guitars, orchestral strings, and a shout out to Hamilton, what more could you ask for? Arkells bring to the table another chart topper from their newest album. “Drake’s Dad” is humorous and slick; an honest little number to add onto Morning Report.

NLX – “Burn” [Listen]
All the dreams that turned, they disobey me.
A steady bass kick and a lusty hum blasts through your eyes immediately. NLX (once a Hamiltonian, now a NYC Big City livin’ gal), strayed away from a heavier-digital edginess to a softer sound. Incorporating more strings and piano, NLX started her recording in an old Hudson church in NYC to fit her third record.

Lainee – “Rock and Sea” [Listen]
Like a river flowing and the sea
A stone doesn’t leave
Sweet and subtle is Lainee’s voice, as she hums along with the “Rock and Sea.” Lainee represents the familiar defiant voices such as: Lana Del Ray, Kate Tucker, and Stevie Nicks, making the aroma of her tune, natural and breezy.

Photo by Tony Hoang, from official website
Photo by Tony Hoang, from official website

Emay – “Israfil ‘angels trumpet’” [Listen]
It’s my time to shine
It’s my time
Impactful. Important. Impressive. We all need a little pick-me-up here and there, why not get it from Emay? Infusing trumpets and light synths, he creates a catchy reminder that we all need to remember that we are strong, and bright, to shine.

The Ollivanders – “The Dove Song” [Listen]
I’ve been working down the line, I’ve been working to try and survive.
This song is an anthem for the post-secondary students all around. Paying bills, car insurance, book experiences, work, and most of all SCHOOL. It’s a real life reminder that we all have to work hard to try and survive to get down the line.

Math Club – “Good/God” [Listen]
I threw words like a weapon, and pulled back your armor
Smooth like silk yet stiff like sandpaper. Math Club mixes both together perfectly with an almost whisper and an heavy alternative guitar, as they relate a semi-familiar feeling for us all, “Good God what am I supposed to do with you.” Whether it be a thought crossing your mind after a fight with a loved one, or your dog peed on your carpet for the second time this week, take it as you will. 


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