Tuesday Tracklist: Green Day, yeule, Bat for Lashes, and More (3/5)

Mar 5, 2024 at 12:16 pm
Bat For Lashes
Bat For Lashes Michal Pudelka

In this weekly feature, a different LEO staff member will share 7–10 of the songs they've got on repeat right now. (Songs by Louisville artists are marked with an asterisk.) Got a track that you think we'd like? Let us know at [email protected] or at the author's email below.

Green Day — "Bobby Sox"
Punk purists—or more accurately, 1990s Punk Revival purists—will claim that Green Day reached their zenith with Kerplunk. Or Dookie. Or maybe American Idiot, depending on their first exposure to the always-poppy trio who were banned from their hometown venue when they first signed a contract with a major label. But are purists ever truly satisfied? Green Day's recently released Saviors is their 14th studio album in their 37-year career and it rips from start to finish. Released as the fifth single from the album, "Bobby Sox" is the bisexual anthem pop punk has always needed. Despite Mike Dirnt's reference (in a behind the scenes video) to the band having more than 150 years of combined experience, the screaming refrain "Do you wanna be my girlfriend? Do you wanna be my boyfriend?" backed by singsong "ooh, ooh-ooh, ooh, ooh-ooh, ooh, ooh" will transport you back to the kinds of house party shows your friends had when their parents were out of town.

White Wooly — "Freak Show" *
Although they describe themselves in their Bandcamp profile as "the soundtrack to your blood-soaked, tequila-fueled bar fight, and the sound you hear as you ride your horse into the sunset with nothing but your name," Louisville three-piece White Wooly might also be described as haunting and cinematic. A highlight of their 2022 full-length Drop Dead, Gorgeous is "Freak Show," a song too lush in its production to be garage rock and too menacing in its mood to be surf rock. At moments reminiscent of Khruangbin in a pensive mood, or Broken Bells (but less concerned about being charming), White Wooly is a standout in Louisville's current rock scene.

Bat For Lashes — "The Dream of Delphi"
Bat for Lashes recently announced a new album, The Dream of Delphi, which will be her sixth album and her first for the label Mercury KX. The 11-track release is scheduled for May 31, so until then, singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Natasha Khan has blessed her listeners with the title track. Khan describes the album as a folkloric account of the conception, birth, and early stages of her daughter Delphi's life, as well as her own experience of early motherhood. The lyrical narrative is told partly through a character named the Motherwitch, but it's Khan's dreamlike contralto and elegant use of synthesizers that tell listeners all we need to know: Motherhood is a journey, fairy tales are full of wisdom, and spiritual experiences need soundtracks.

Mod Kiddo — "Scintillation" *
Mod Kiddo is a washed-out, lo-fi, dream pop delight. Singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist Michaela McKiernan has been working in the music industry since she was 14 years old, when she designed tour merchandise for fellow Kentuckians Cage the Elephant. The title track for Mod Kiddo's debut album, "Scintillation" is majestic in its sonic posture while still being immediately accessible. Comparisons to Mazzy Star or Beach House (or Air, whose song "Playground Love" Mode Kiddo covers live) are almost accurate but also oversimple. The studio band on the album includes Tom Blankenship from My Morning Jacket on bass guitar, and Van Campbell from Black Diamond Heavies and Bonnie "Prince" Billy on drums. The emotional effect of their combined musicianship supporting McKiernan's ethereal vocal style is mesmerizing.

yeule — "sulky baby"
Singaporean songwriter and producer Nat Ćmiel has been making the avant-garde approachable since 2012. The first single from her third album is both a slowcore confessional and a twinkling example of East Asian post-pop. Her confectionery vocals are layered over guitar and synthesizers in a way that creates a hazy hybrid of ambient, synth, glitch, and shoegaze—with occasional shards of noise. The swaying rhythm of "sulk baby" is visualized perfectly in the blurry-lens video that follows their path to meeting their younger self. It's a loving satire of the experience of reconciling with their younger self (the literal sulky baby) and their current self, who is well on the way to healing.

Ahc — "freeze" *
Seeing Louisville-based producer, singer, and rapper Ahc perform at PORTAL after the opening reception of the Girl Crush art exhibition at ARTPORTAL was a whole moment. Her stage presence was confident yet playful. Her flow was effervescent. Her house-informed hyperpop sounds bring to mind a pastel neon video game environment as much as they do a real-life rooftop pool party. Annahelen Croce began recording music under the name Ahc in 2020 and her single "freeze," released in November 2023, was her 53rd release. This highly repeatable bop will appeal to fans of dance/electronic artists like Jessy Lanza as it brings a cascading feminine vocal style to the foreground of a bouncy rhythm. Prolific and approachable, Ahc is a real one to start following. Immediately.

Four Tet — "Daydream Repeat"
Released on Valentine's Day, "Daydream Repeat" is a propulsive dance track unashamed to be beautiful. It begins with a bouncy techno beat under a blanket of distortion before that blanket unfurls to make space for a coruscating autoharp melody. This hypnotic instrumental track is the third single released from what will become Four Tet's 12th album. British electronic musician Kieran Hebden has been producing music as Four Tet since 1999, and with each release, has taken us closer to musical enlightenment. The full-length Three is scheduled to arrive March 15 from Text Records.