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Local Faves Hot Freaks and KC Rae Return in This Week’s New Music Playlists

5 great new local tracks, 5 great new tracks from everywhere else.

Photos provided|

KC Rae, Nnamdï

Have I mentioned lately how lucky I am that I get to go song-mining every week, and I get to quip about my finds here?

Local Picks

Champagne Confetti, “Sad Delf”

Aby Wolf always has something going on, and Champagne Confetti is quite a something: “a 12-piece progressive chamber ensemble” that showcases melodies that range from accessible avant-garde to abstract pop, vocal timbres that vary from cool keen to drama club gleam, and settings that spike minimalism with more expansive experimentalism. As I get my head around the self-titled full length, let me recommend this track as the easiest way in.  

Derecho Rhythm Section, “Want It Back”

Some easy-rolling funk from the hard-gigging quartet of Als Sparhawk and Church, Izzy Cruz, and Cyrus. There are words (mostly, as you’d guess, “want it back”) chanted, mostly as an excuse for a terrific harmony vocal.

HALEY, “Good Things”

The mononymous singer-songwriter slows this early Sleater-Kinney track to a moody deadpan that fits its lyric just as fully as the original’s aggrieved simmer did. S-K were always craftier writers than some noticed.  

Hot Freaks, “Let’s Start a Country”

These good-natured pop-rockers disbanded in 2015, but the viral TikTok success of “Puppy Princess” gave them second thoughts. Now they have a new album out, the hopefully titled Hot Freaks Forever, highlighted by this hopefully title single on which they discover it’s not just difficult but actually illegal. Hm, is there a plan B? 

KC Rae, “Blockbuster”

Half of former local pop hopefuls Now, Now, Rae has been releasing singles all year, the most recent of which, "Parking Lot," brought me back to my fave of the batch, this nostalgic April release. Her solo full-length debut, Think I'm Gonna Die, is out November 10.

Non-Local Picks

NNAMDÏ (Feat. Big Baby Scumbag), “You Can’t Tell Me Shit” 

With elastic drums bounding about boisterously, this may be about the rappiest this wonderful Chicago pan-genre-ist ever gets. (Proceed to Brat from 2020 if you like this—or even if you don’t.) As for Floridian rapper Big Baby Scumbag, he shouts just as much as you would hope. 

Carly Pearce, “Heels Over Head”
Pearce is better than the good-girl act she puts on here, firing off lines like "you love the way that she blows your... mind" about a woman who honestly sounds like a lot of fun. But as a (mostly) unashamed “Dicked Down in Dallas” fan (sorry), I gotta admit that “You’re head over heels ‘cause she’s heels over head for you” is just good stuff. 

Say Now, “S.I.N.G.L.E.”
Could the success of Kpop spawn a new generation of girl groups worldwide? These three harmonizing Londoners make good on the promise of “(Netflix) Better Now Without You” here, acting independent and proud without getting too nasty about it.

Sleater-Kinney, “Hell”

Look, I miss Janet Weiss as much as anyone (I didn’t see you at the Quasi show) and if you want to put an asterisk next to the band name and consider all subsequent Tucker/Brownstein output non-canon, split any hairs you desire. But art is messy, so are interpersonal band relations, and Sleater-Kinney are moving in directions they couldn't or wouldn't before, at a time in their career when the alternatives were calcification or second retirement.

Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers, “I Used to Be Fun”
A great band name will only get you so far, but the lead track from these Canberra gals’ new album I Love You has a bead on what makes a tuneful neo-indie/not-quite-punk rush work, right down to one of those guitar solos that echoes the melody. I don’t even want to ask how “old” singer Anna Ryan is.

Wanna get a local song considered for the playlist? To make things easy on both of us, email with MONDAY PLAYLIST in the subject header. (Don’t, as in do NOT, DM or text: If I’m in a good mood, I’ll just ask you to send an email; if I’m in a bad mood I’ll just ignore it.)


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