Northern Transmissions Weekly Round Up: February 25-29

Northern Transmissions favourite indie songs for the week of February 25-29, include titles by Mannequin Pussy, Mdou Moctar, h.pruz and more
Northern Transmissions favourite indie songs for the week of February 25-29, include titles by Mannequin Pussy, Mdou Moctar, h.pruz and more

When I was a teenager, the music that I gravitated towards was pretty one-dimensional, at least in the way that I was approaching it. I was drawn to loud, discordant, aggressive music with screeching guitars and blow-out-your-subwoofers drums. I needed my music to sound like a riot. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve come to understand that I can still find music that embodies that energy that sounded softer, gentle and even weird. Some of these tracks fit that mold, and some don’t:

Mannequin Pussy – OK? OK! OK? OK!

There is such tenderness on I Got Heaven, Mannequin Pussy’s newest album. There are moments of sweet, soaring melody that feel triumphant and sentimental. And then there are moments like “OK? OK! OK? OK!” that feel raucous and untamed. Overall, the resulting album culminates in an honest, vulnerable record with teeth that aggressively embraces love and the unknown. I Got Heaven is out now.

Mdou Moctar – “Funeral For Justice”

Incendiary and teeming with a riotous fervor, Mdou Moctar makes music that is truly impossible to ignore. This week, the Niger-based guitarist shared Funeral For Justice, the title track from the band’s seventh studio album and follow-up to 2021’s Afrique Victime. “Funeral for Justice” commands attention from the first note, buzzing away in an unrelenting firestorm of frenetic downbeats pockmarked by a psychedelic miasma of swirling melodies on Moctar’s guitar. Shortly after finishing the album last year, the group was unable to return home to Niger due to a violent military coup. Moctar said “… never in my life liked France in my country. I don’t hate France or French people, I don’t hate American people either, but I don’t support their manipulative policies, what they do in Africa.” Funeral For Justice is out on Matador Records May 3rd.

h.pruz – “I Keep Changing”

They’re precious and rare, but when you find those songs that transport wholly to another place and time – you hold onto them. This week, New York City-based songwriter h.pruz has gifted us with another one of those songs. “I Keep Changing” is a breezy acoustic tune with pangs of strings and saccharine melodies that wrap you the cozy blanket of what it feels like to finally feel yourself changing. It feels like the first warm breeze after a long winter; like the first drops of rain after a long drought. There’s a hopefulness intrinsic to the song that keeps you returning again and again.

Tomato Flower – “Harlequin”

Baltimore-baed Tomato Flower makes sweet summery pop jams that stick with you like the way that honey sticks to your fingers after a sweet treat. “Harlequin” is the third single that the band is releasing ahead of their forthcoming album No (out next week! Very soon!). “Harlequin” sees playful melodies dance lazily around twinkling synth lines and a steady backbeat that feel like how the fair must feel like to a child experiencing it for the first time. No is out March 8th via Ramp Local.

Anastasia Coope – “He is On His Way Home, We Don’t Live Together”

Imagine a track that captures that feeling between consciousness and deep sleep; a track that manages to tow the line between tenderness and eeriness perfectly. Anastasia Coope’s “He is On His Way Home, We Don’t Live Together” captures such a feeling, and it’s easy to see how one can get lost in her world of wispy and disjointed choral arrangements, discordant guitar melodies and otherwise dream-like sonic tapestry. Her debut album is out on May 31st via Jagjaguwar.

Words and Thoughts by Conor Rooney


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