Is new music the best way to end summer vacay? Yes.
1. THE WEEKND – The Hills
“The Hills” is the badass hit single by Scarborough’s PBR&B artist The Weeknd (Abel Tesfaye). It’s off his upcoming second album Beauty Behind The Madness that was released just this weekend. But he wasn’t always huge – he started off his career by mysteriously and anonymously dropping tracks on YouTube. This songs got everyone playing it on repeat due to its powerful drop. But why “half past five”? Abel is known for his avid drug use, in fact, for being under the influence more than he is sober. “Half past five” is from Alan Jackson’s song “It’s five o’clock somewhere”, meaning getting high or drunk no matter what time of day.
2. ROYAL BLOOD – Ten Tonne Skeleton
Based on the full and rich sound of Royal Blood, you’d be surprised to know that it’s just comprised of two guys – Mike Kerr on bass and vocals, and drummer Ben Thatcher. Royal Blood are from the UK and have just finished up touring with the Foo Fighters (no big deal). “Ten Tonne Skeleton” is the latest single off the band’s debut, self-titled album, which was released last year.
3. TWENTY ONE PILOTS – Stressed Out
Peter Pan Blurryface and I care what you think”
These two dudes from Ohio reminisce their childhood in “Stressed Out”, wishing this whole adult thing was easier. “Wish we could turn back time, to the good ol’ days, When our momma sang us to sleep but now we’re stressed out”. The song is from Twenty One Pilot’s fourth album Blurryface. They gained wide popularity after the release of their 2013 breakthrough album Vessel.
4. THE ELWINS – Show Me How To Move
More Canadian talent! The Elwins, originally a duo who started off performing at talent shows in Ontario, have evolved into a 4-piece band who have made a mark int he Canadian independent music scene, even before the release of their debut album And I Thank You. They are known for their high-energy performances with tons of audience participation and sing-alongs.. So if you’re looking to dance it out this fall, see them live in Toronto on September 18th and 19th!
5. COURTNEY BARNETT – No One Really Cares If You Don’t Go To The Party*
This track is off Barnett’s 2015 debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think and Sometimes I Just Sit (she seems to likes long names!). This Australian indie rocker is known as “the new bard of rock” and has been turning heads in the industry, getting mentions by both Rolling Stone and The New York Times as a standout performer.
6. HEALTH – Stonefist
The latest single shared by noise-rockers HEALTH is a roller coaster for your ears. From the loud and intense intro, to the calm vocal entry, electronic chorus, and then heavy but dance-able buildup. Like it? ‘Stonefist’ is from the band’s new album Death Magic, out now.
7. LOWELL – Ride ft. Icona Pop
Get it, girl – this song’s an ode to Augusta and Adeline Van Buren. They were the first women to ride motorcycles across the states, at the age of 22 and 24. They did this to prove that women could ride motorcycles just as well as men can, and that they should therefore be able to serve as dispatch riders during World War I. Though it happened in 1916, the idea behind the story is timeless, which is why Lowell brings it up and delivers a song that’s about female empowerment, youth, rebellion and keeping a happy-go-lucky state of mind.
8. NEW ORDER – Restless
This tune is off New Order’s impressive TENTH album, Music Complete, which will be released on September 25th. This will be their first full length album in 10 years. In ‘Restless’, the band contemplates life in the modern world, and instead of leaning towards one sound as they tended to do, it’s a blend of rock and electronic. Catch them playing at the Sony Centre in Toronto on October 23 or 24th!
9. THE STRUMBELLAS – Spirits
I could totally see this song being sung around a campfire. This youth-themed summer anthem is the first single off Strumbella’s new album out February 2016 on Six Shooter Records. There isn’t any info out about the album, except for this single, but it’s clear they’ve stuck with their sing-able and dance-able melodies that has allowed them to connect with their audience. Something else that we know? This new album is going to be “Bigger. Bolder. Beckoning”. The Strumbellas are a Juno-award winning band from Lindsey, Ontario. Alright, this song is totally in my head..
10. FRATELLIS – Baby Don’t You Lie To Me
Cover your ears and you’d think this was from Fratellis’ first album Costello Music (2006), which included their hit “Flathead”! This new single is from their upcoming fourth album Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied, that’s just been released. Their plan was actually to revisit the fun, live and raw atmosphere of Costello Music.
11. JARRYD JAMES – Do You Remember
Jarryd James is new to the North American scene, but isn’t a stranger to Australia’s. “Do You Remember” was co-written with Joel Little, the producer behind Lorde’s breakout hit “Royals”. In April, it reached #2 on the Australian charts, became the #1 song on the Australian iTunes singles chart, Shazam charts and Australian radio.. phew. He achieved this independently and was then signed to Interscope. Jarryd is considered one of the most honest songwriters, writing deep and unpretentious lyrics, lullabying audiences with his croon. He’s also said to be gentle and even shy in person. In describing his music, he said “It’s all about what a song can make you feel […] If you want to get away from the here and now, you can put a song on and do that. I want to write music that does that. I think that’s really beautiful”.
12. IVORY HOURS – I Won’t
Congrats to our Edge Next Big Thing 2015 winners Ivory Hours!!! They’re an alt-pop band from London, Ontario, who have been killing it over the past couple years: From winning radio contests (they won a cover contest with 98.1 Free FM too), to opening for big names like Sam Roberts, to playing big festivals during their promotional tour to the west coast in 2014. Their songs are colorful, upbeat and feel-good. If this doesn’t make you want to dance, I don’t know what will! However, even though this song follows that sound, the dark lyrics contrast against it. “I won’t” is featured in their full-length debut album Morning Light, which was released this summer.