Alternative rock band Keep It a Secret returns with their new single “Middle with My Thumbs Up”, as catharsis for listeners. With its mix of soul-piercing screams and whisper-esque vocals over a bombastic guitar-laden instrumental, the band captures the feeling of an emotional roller coaster as they lament over heartbreak and loves that were never quite meant to be. Over a chorus of “Left for dead, it takes time to get away”, the band reluctantly accepts a withdrawal from romance to escape a self-destructive cycle that could claim their sanity and any hope of starting anew. The opening line “I’ve been watching you destroy me” is a sign of infatuation morphing into a ticking time bomb of dependence. The band describes:
‘Middle with my Thumbs Up’ is a dichotic look back on the melancholy of lost love. Although seemingly separate emotions, anger and sadness are often a self-destructive loop that many people experience from heartbreak in all its forms. This song incorporates both intimate, almost whispered vocals and cathartic gritty yells to illustrate these feelings.
The video shows a masked couple in separate colors attempting to embrace within a decrepit household, which captures the realization of disconnect and blindness clouding a relationship. It’s as if one’s own love can end up haunting them and living inside as an unwanted guest for some time.
Check out the video for “Middle with my Thumbs Up” and be on the lookout for Keep It a Secret’s next project.
Bo Armstrong was just as captivated as the rest of us when he viewed the Billie Eilish documentary earlier this year. So much so, that he chose to cover “When the Party’s Over,” an already devastatingly beautiful and heartbreaking song. His version of the song takes a more delicate hold than even Eilish’s, building slowly with the introduction of each new instrument. The sadness is palpable in his vocals, as he reflects on the subject matter and its devastating impact.
I lost someone else to suicide a few years prior, and my response was somewhat similar —it’s just hard to feel anything but helpless. But after watching the movie —and hearing those first few notes of “when the party’s over” over and over again in my head —I had the idea to record a version of the song and use it as a tool to help me raise money for organizations that are working to promote mental health awareness and prevent suicide. It felt like it could be a way for me to not do nothing.
We are going to be sitting in the corner with our goosebumps, surrounded by his gorgeous voice.
Talented pop-tinted duo Flora Cash recently announced the upcoming release of their album, our generation, in late October of this year. Along with that announcement comes the premiere of their latest single, a haunting track titled “We Use to Laugh/9 to 9”.
The pair is privy to the overarchingly sad effect the song has on people. After all, this single has a bit of a melancholic subject matter to it, outlining the heartbreak that Shpresa has experienced. “That moment you realize everything you thought you knew about somebody was a lie. Sadly, it’s a feeling a lot of us have experienced. In many ways this song describes a sober, honest reflection on a relationship defined by narcissism and manipulation.”
Reflecting back on memories within an unhealthy relationship can be a difficult thing to do, however much easier when you find people who can relate and survive their own memories alongside you. Check out the new single below.
Have you ever had a case of massive bitterness over love lost or heartbreak in general? Glittering synth-pop project This Coast Bias really wades through it with new track “Waste of Time.” Despite the danceable pop composition, the song itself does not waste any time in dissecting that past love. The music is like candy to your ears, almost detracting from the reality of it all. Even so, it gets to the point, expressing the worthless nature of the relationship, and then cuts out clean. Explains the artist of the new track:
The ‘Waste of Time’ chorus kinda popped into my head when I was brushing my teeth one night. I wanted a hook that was unquestionably directed at the listener; one that didn’t dance around the issue. It’s kind of a brutal verbal dagger. The instrumentation also harkens back to a more indie sound that I’m steeped in usually, with minimalistic percussion and a little lofi synth solo in there.
“The Crazing of Polymers” is the newest single from twin sisters Claire and Sarah Bowman. The two recently reunited after quarantining in two different countries for the past year. The Bowmans continued to write and record from their respective homes, building an album that is due to come out this fall. In the meantime, we are fortunate to get “The Crazing of Polymers”.
The lyrics in “The Crazing of Polymers” seem to suggest the existence of an ordinary life in which we can all relate, a life that ebbs and flows through the good and bad. The two choruses, while sounding alike, follow a timeline of a life spent together:
Chorus 1: I don’t know if it matters, how we got here anyway, I don’t think it makes a difference, if the kids played well today.
Chorus 2: I don’t know if it matters, how we fought again today I don’t think it makes a difference, how many cracks are patched up through our little earthquakes.
Claire Bowman opened up about the song title:
Crazing is a process where you take something porous and delicate and make it strong and solid (and attractive), like the way we harden from the layers of pain life dishes out daily. One of my favorite lyrics is, “there’s only so many little breaks a heart can take.” This would seem to imply that these fissures would lead to heartbreak, but instead, her response to them is to accept these as part of life, staying rooted in the good that comes along with the difficult.
The Bowman’s vocals, however, are what really tell the story. Their voices harmonize, seemingly effortlessly, and run the gamut from simple to soaring in phrasing. “The Crazing of Polymers” defies genre – The Bowman’s have created a song that is both lively in its’ tempo and aching in some of the vocals.
The sisters had toured extensively throughout the United States and internationally from 2005 – 2011. By 2013, they had released four full-length albums.
As much as we love covering music on an international scale, we see the value in (and need for) local artist spotlights. Since Imperfect Fifth is based in Kansas City, we have teamed up with the Kansas City Women’s Music Network to bring you artist highlights about twice per month.
About Ro Myra: “I grew up in a small, dried-up oil and farming town in the middle of nowhere Nebraska,” says Ro Myra. “I spent most of my life running away from it, and now I’m right back where I started.”
‘Nowhere, Nebraska,’ Myra’s extraordinary debut, is more than just a musical homecoming, though. Recorded in Denver, Nashville, and Austin, the self-produced collection is a complex reckoning with the past, a nuanced, literate reexamination of small-town life in the shadow of heartbreak, self-destruction, and second chances. While the arrangements here are broad and sweeping, Myra’s storytelling is sharply focused and firmly rooted. She writes with a novelist’s eye and sings with the kind of weathered grace that makes even hard truths go down easy, calling to mind everything from Kathleen Edwards to Lucinda Williams as she makes peace with the past in order to more fully inhabit the present.
Though her path seemed anything but obvious, Myra knew from an early age that her future lay beyond the endless cropland that surrounded her growing up. She taught herself piano as a child, studied classical composition in college, and spent her post-grad years working with international non-profits before returning to music at the urging of her mentor, renowned composer Dr. Eric Funk. The result is a captivating debut all about memory and forgiveness, a warm embrace of an album as raw and windswept as the landscape that inspired it.
Ro Myra may have left home, but home, it seems, never left her.
If it’s been a second since you let yourself get totally wrapped up in melancholy, Zoe Wees’ single “Girls Like Us” is the perfect opportunity to get all up in your feels. The woman’s insanely rich vocals glide across a dance beat, as her heartbreak is laid out for all to witness.
The accompanying music video? Even more intense and dramatic. Gorgeous jewel tones inform the visuals, as Wees can be seen singing, crying, having makeup removed, and singing her lungs out over a variety of striking backdrops.
It moved me to tears.
“It’s not always good to think about how you look to the rest of the world,” shares Weed. “It’s much more important to think about how you feel inside. It is not easy to call yourself beautiful but being confident helps you to accept and love yourself.”
The video for Ane Brun’s track “Crumbs”, from one of her two newly released albums “After The Great Storm” (the other is How Beauty Holds the Hand of Sorrow), is a brilliant showcase of emotions. Each scene is a carefully woven story of pain and love and the lessons that come along with both. While some scenes show us the seemingly picture-perfect life of a happy family enjoying the company of one another, the heartbreaking truths are revealed beyond the smiles and the laughs. Various cuts to the picture of unhappiness and yearning create a sobering reminder that there is more than meets the eye. The very last shot offers a glimpse of hope that we can still find our way to feeling content and filled with joy somewhere down the line.
Brun says of the new albums:
Even though I wrote most of them before this whole pandemic started, I feel they all have a message that fits the situation we’re in: frustration over the state of the world, how to grieve for a loved one, existentialism, love, relationships, loneliness, inner struggles, sleepless nights…I guess they’re just about being human.
With a powerful yet heartbreaking dance tune like “Blame”, it makes sense as to why duo Yardhaus was successful in opening for superstars like Marshmello and Zedd. They are superstars themselves. The infectious production of the tune by itself proves why they are a force to be reckoned with. But beyond this groove, there is a story being told. The lyrics speak of the ability to foreshadow that a relationship is going to end pretty much before it even got started. This crash course in understanding toxic relationships could have become the next heart shattering breakup ballad, and we would have loved that, too. But the combination of catchy electronic beats and a sobering story of lost love is what makes Yardhaus the superstars they are. By marrying the two ingredients that many look for, they prove that they want to bring everybody on their journey, and we all want to join.
The duo says of the track: “‘Blame’ is a hybrid between dance, pop, and electronic. The song is about knowing how a relationship will end, even from the start. It speaks to the toxicity and short-sighted nature of transactional relationships.”