Weezer. Yes, that’s Weezer, back from Africa with a new single, “Can’t Knock The Hustle,” debuting at #1 this week! And with that, we shall commence another weekly SubModern Report.

Over on the album chart, it’s Tom Morello of Rage Against The Machine and Audioslave fame, teaming up with many different musicians and vocalists on his new album The Atlas Underground, which also makes a #1 debut. One of the most notable team-ups on that album is with Portugal. The Man on the song “Every Step That I Take,” which jumps up the chart to #2. It’s another good week for Metric with “Now or Never Now” at #4 and Art of Doubt tied for #3. That tie is with another album debuting this week – Darkness Rains from Death Valley Girls, whose single “Disaster (Is What We’re After) shows up in a three-way tie for #5 with Muse‘s “Pressure” and Sharon Van Etten‘s “Comeback Kid.” The top ten of the singles chart wraps up with a four-way tie (bringing it to a top eleven). Broncho‘s “Keep It In Line” and Death Cab For Cutie‘s “Northern Lights” are both included in that tie, and both artists also appear in the top ten albums (DCFC at #6t and Broncho at #7t). The last two singles in that four way tie are “Light On” from Maggie Rogers and last week’s #1, “Oh No” from Lion.

Taking a quick look back over at the album chart, Hippo Campus is also tied for #6t and J. Mascis for #7t. That leaves four more, all tied at #9 – Big Mother Gig, Cat Power, Kurt Vile, and Minus The Bear. You can sort that all out on the charts below and find what comes after the top ten at FMQB.com/SubModern.

I caught some more great shows last weekend from The Beths and Django Django. Now after a few days of rest, I’m looking forward to seeing Kero Kero Bonito for the first time tomorrow and CHVRCHES for not the first time on Friday. Gosh, I think I have shows almost every night next week as well. Must be Rocktober! I hope you’re taking full advantage of it too.

~ Josh Landow
Twitter: @JoshTLandow
 

Updated 10/17/18

#ArtistTrackLabel
1WEEZERCAN’T KNOCK THE HUSTLECRUSH
2TOM MORELLO [FT. PORTUGAL. THE MAN & WHETHAN]EVERY STEP THAT I TAKEMOM + POP / RED
3KT TUNSTALLHUMAN BEINGROSTRUM / INGROOVES
4METRICNOW OR NEVER NOW  MMI
5tDEATH VALLEY GIRLSDISASTER (IS WHAT WE’RE AFTER)SUICIDE SQUEEZE
 MUSEPRESSUREWARNER BROS.
 SHARON VAN ETTENCOMEBACK KIDJAGJAGUWAR
8tBRONCHOKEEP IT IN LINEPARK THE VAN
 DEATH CAB FOR CUTIENORTHERN LIGHTSATLANTIC
 LIONOH NOFICTION / WE ARE HEAR
 MAGGIE ROGERSLIGHT ONCAPITOL
12tCLOUD NOTHINGSLEAVE HIM NOWCARPARK
 J. MASCISEVERYTHING SHE SAIDSUB POP
 JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTSFRESH STARTBLACKHEART
 JUST LOUD [FT. DEBBIE HARRY]SOUL TRAINFIVE SEVEN
 MINUS THE BEARVIADUCTSUICIDE SQUEEZE
17tHIPPO CAMPUSBAMBIGRAND JURY
 INDOOR PETSHIWICHITA
 MORGXN [FT. WALK THE MOON]HOMEWXNDERLOST
20tBIG MOTHER GIG [FT. DICKY BARRETT]LOW PAYOUTSWEET SWEET
 GANG OF YOUTHSLET ME DOWN EASYRED
 LITTLE DRAGONLOVER CHANTINGNINJA TUNE
 MINI MANSIONSMIDNIGHT IN TOKYOFICTION
 MOTH & FLAMETHE NEW GREAT DEPRESSIONTHIRTY TIGERS / RED
25tHOZIERNINA CRIED POWERCOLUMBIA
 NIGHT LIGHTSTALK TO ME3AM
 POP NOIRWHITE JAZZFANTASTIC HEAT

 

Updated 10/17/18

#ArtistAlbumLabel
1TOM MORELLOTHE ATLAS UNDERGROUNDMOM + POP
2KT TUNSTALLWAXROSTRUM / INGROOVES
3tDEATH VALLEY GIRLSDARKNESS RAINSSUICIDE SQUEEZE
 METRICART OF DOUBTMMI
6tDEATH CAB FOR CUTIETHANK YOU FOR TODAYATLANTIC
 HIPPO CAMPUSBAMBIGRAND JURY
7tBRONCHOBAD BEHAVIORPARK THE VAN
 J. MASCISELASTIC DAYSSUB POP
9tBIG MOTHER GIGNO MORE QUESTIONSSWEET SWEET
 CAT POWERWANDERERDOMINO
 KURT VILEBOTTLE IT INMATADOR
 MINUS THE BEARFAIR ENOUGHSUICIDE SQUEEZE
13MAGGIE ROGERSHEARD IT IN A PAST LIFECAPITOL
14CLOUD NOTHINGSLAST BUILDING BURNINGCARPARK
15tGANG OF YOUTHSGO FARTHER IN LIGHTNESSRED
 MINI MANSIONSWORKS EVERY TIMEFICTION
 THOM YORKESUSPIRIA SOUNDTRACKXL
 YOUNG THE GIANTMIRROR MASTERELEKTRA
19tCURSIVEVITRIOLA15 PASSENGER
 ELVIS COSTELLO & THE IMPOSTERSLOOK NOWCONCORD
 HOZIERNINA CRIED POWERCOLUMBIA
22tADRIANNE LENKERABYSSKISSSADDLE CREEK
 BOY PABLOSOY PABLOU OK? / 777
 BROKEN BABYBROKEN BABYPALO SANTO
 CASTLECOMERCASTLECOMERCONCORD
 THE DIRTY NILMASTER VOLUMEDINE ALONE
 MATTHEW DEARBUNNYGHOSTLY INTERNATIONAL
 PALE WAVESMY MIND MAKES NOISEDIRTY HIT
 SLOTHRUSTTHE PACTDANGERBIRD
 ST. VINCENTMASSEDUCATIONLOMA VISTA / CONCORD
 SWEARIN’FALL INTO THE SUNMERGE
 THRILL YOU KILL YOUTHRILL YOU KILL YOUSELF-RELEASED
 TOKYO POLICE CLUBTPCDINE ALONE

 

SUBMODERN SESSION: SPEEDY ORTIZ

Speedy Ortiz
Twerp Verse
(Carpark)

Indie rockers Speedy Ortiz released their third full-length album Twerp Verse earlier this year. Singer/guitarist Sadie Dupuis and the band’s current lineup of guitarist Andy Molholt, drummer Mike Falcone and touring bassist Audrey Zee, recently recorded a live SubModern Session and interview for FMQB, chatting with Josh T. Landow & Joey Odorisio about their new music, video style, keeping venues safe for fans, and of course, their love of Riverdale.

QB: The band is more geographically spread apart than it’s ever been, with Sadie living in Philadelphia. How did that affect working on this new record?

Sadie Dupuis: We have a touring bassist with us today instead of recording bassist Darl Ferm. So that’s the answer.

QB: "Lean In When I Suffer" I assume was partly inspired by the "lean in" movement and slogan…

SD: Sure, I wouldn’t say ‘inspired by,’ more like ‘riffing on.’ I don’t have a Sheryl Sandberg framed portrait above my bedpost. [laughs]

QB: All the videos for Twerp Verse, despite being shot by different directors, have a surreal, colorful, cartoonish aesthetic to them. Was that an intentional not-quite-theme?

SD: We shot "Lean In When I Suffer" here in Philly. "Lucky 88" in New York in a photo studio space that gets rented out for stuff like that. And the other one, "Villain," was shot all over the place. I shot my parts in LA and these guys shot in Austin and Darl filmed his in Boston.

I wouldn’t say that we pushed that theme on the directors. I think they were all working simultaneously without knowing what the other was working on but I think that some previous Speedy Ortiz videos kinda have that aesthetic. And certainly I think I’m a little notorious for liking rainbow stuff, so maybe they just picked up on some other things we’ve done. I think it fits well with our aesthetic and it also fits well with the sound of the record, which is very bright to me and colorful in its production.

Mike Falcone: A lot of directors pitch us two or three or more ideas and the one we end up choosing is the one that looks like that. [laughs] So that also might have something to do with it.

QB: And the "Lucky 88" video is the one that’s basically The Blob!

SD: Yeah that was so fun to work on. And I think maybe I did give the director Emily a little bit of color references just in the aesthetic in what we were going for in that song. I think we mentioned Black Mirror to her and I think I mentioned Riverdale. So that would certainly produce an aesthetic a little bit like what she dreamt up.

Audrey Zee: Riverdale‘s the greatest show ever filmed.

SD: When I made "Lucky 88," I was really deep into the first season of Riverdale. I think it had ended, but I was listening to the soundtrack a lot and so I thought, "I’m gonna make a song that sounds like it could be on a CW show." And that’s "Lucky 88."

QB: Have you had any songs on CW shows?

SD: No! Where are they? I keep trying, I bring it up in interviews and people are like, "We’re gonna make it happen!" So don’t let me down.

QB: You were in The Archies comic though.

SD: We were in The Archies! Speedy Ortiz judged a battle of the bands between The Archies and Josie & The Pussycats. The Pussycats won but we invited Archie to come on tour with us as our third guitarist.

QB: They had a great lineup of bands in that comic, I know CHVRCHES was in it…Tegan & Sara did one.

SD: CHVRCHES was in it and they had lots of little shout-outs to bands. Like in the same issue we’re in, after The Archies lose the battle of the bands, and I’m just spoiling this whole issue, so please go buy it after you hear this entire plot… In the hotel after the battle of the bands, I go to Archie’s room and invite him to tour and come play with us. The Pussycats invite Veronica I think to join and then Betty plays an open mic solo wearing a Waxahatchee t-shirt. So that was a good cameo, and I think there was a Hop Along poster in a store.

The writers really like cool music and have had tons of cool little references…I think they did a playlist of all the bands.

QB: There was actually a previous version of the record that didn’t come out and you recorded it twice basically. How’d that work out and why did that happen?

SD: We did the record and felt there could be some stronger songs or songs that we felt more connected to, so we took some time, wrote some more songs and went back into the studio.

QB: And some of the newer songs are a little more politically charged? Which are new and which are old?

SD: Yeah and we kept some of the old ones too that fit along that description. "Villain" is an old one…"Sport Death" is an old one… I first did "Alone with Girls" as a flexi-disc for Father/Daughter Records for the "Keep In Touch" flexi-disc postcard series, so I had a demo of that a long time ago that I did solo and then we did a full band version for this record.

QB: You set up your hotline for concertgoers who feel unsafe if something is going down at a show that they’re uncomfortable with. How does it actually work?

SD: It’s a text hotline so that someone can discretely get help if they need to. It forwards to anyone on the tour…a merch person or a sound person or all of us. So we started that a few years ago, along with posting safer space policies and more recently, we’ve also incorporated distributing bystander intervention and de-escalation tactics.

We started this hotline because it’s not always clear how to get help or who to get help from when you’re at a venue, especially when you’re at a festival or outdoor venue. Our thought was, "We know who to get help from. If they contact us, we trust ourselves." But what I think has been more helpful is having the safer space guidelines up and the bystander intervention stuff up, because people have texted the hotline but it’s never been for anything where we can directly go and intervene. For example, "I want to walk to the subway but I don’t feel safe doing that." Or "this person is using bigoted language." So it hasn’t been for drastic emergencies, which is great.

But what I think has been really cool about it is that some other bands who draw bigger crowds than we do have started using it and have more of an infrastructure. I think that every band and every venue should have something like this. It would be great to know that venues have some kind of protocol and some kind of guidelines of what they won’t tolerate but until then it’s cool that more bands are doing it. Modern Baseball did it a little bit after us and they had their phone number projected on the stage behind them so anyone can text it. I think Marissa Paternoster [of Screaming Females] did an animation that was projected behind them. And more recently I’ve been talking to Dispatch…they’ve been doing a lot of work trying to push back against harassment and assault at gigs.

So there’s a lot of work people are doing. Lots of different pockets of different ideas and it’s cool that lots of everyone’s focused on this and trying to make it better.

QB: Finally, we wanted to ask you about your "You Ate the Title" food tour.

SD: We did this thing where we collaborated with a lot of different vegan and vegan-friendly restaurants around the country. We would pick a local charity together and name a menu item or come up with a special and they would donate a percentage of the proceeds to that charity. We would get to go to the restaurant and eat a food special that we would very hokily name with a pun related to one of our songs.

QB: What was the best one?

SD: "Bánh Mì Off" which our friend Lucy Stone named, which had Bánh mì ingredients on a pizza crust, so we had pickled carrots, cilantro, some tofu, an aioli Sriracha …after our song "Buck Me Off."

Find out more of what’s going on with Speedy Ortiz at SpeedyOrtiz.com.  Twerp Verse is out now on Carpark Records.  Listen to their SubModern Session performances of songs from the album here.

By Joey Odorisio & Josh T. Landow

Kate Nash (photo: Kate Bellm)

Kate Nash (photo: Kate Bellm)

IN THE RING WITH KATE NASH

By Josh T. Landow & Joey Odorisio

British singer-songwriter Kate Nash made a splash back in 2007 with her debut album Made of Bricks, showcasing her sharp songwriting and witty lyrics. Since then, her sound has expanded and gotten more eclectic over the course of the past decade. The past year has seen her profile skyrocket, as she used Kickstarter to fund the release of her fourth album Yesterday Was Forever while also co-starring on the smash Netflix series GLOW. Recently, Kate sat down with Josh T. Landow & Joey Odorisio of FMQB to discuss her new record, feminism, mental health and pro wrestling.

 

How was your experience of working with Kickstarter?
I feel like it still is the experience because it’s still figuring it out as you go along. It was nerve-wracking doing the Kickstarter. I didn’t want to do it at first because I thought it might fail and I was nervous the entire time. But I was also pretty excited. The more time went on, I realized it made more sense for me to be doing that. I had terrible meetings with record labels that made me feel like crap.

You already had three albums out through bigger labels and that helped you build enough of a fan base that when you go off on your own with something like Kickstarter, they’ll follow you.
It was so stressful. You have to brace yourself for failure or you have to change how you measure success. It’s really easy to feel like “I’m falling because everything’s hard” or “Should it be easier? Should I keep going because it’s so hard?” But actually, we’re having amazing experiences on tour that are a constant reminder.

I met a girl the other night who was crying through “Nicest Thing,” so much so that Emma in my band wanted to run down and hug her during the show. We met her afterward and she said her and her sister had listened to my music together and they’d always talked about going to a show. Her sister died, and that was her sister’s favorite song. And she was from Alaska and we were in Denver, and her grandparents lived in Denver, so she decided it was a sign and came to the show on her own. That is so amazing and that’s how I want to measure success – just having a connection with people through music.

You can’t take it for granted. It’s easy to get caught up in that fast-paced lifestyle and what boxes you need to tick, but I’ll remember that for the rest of my life. When I look back on Made of Bricks and being on the charts and played on the radio, that’s not something I look back on and think, “Oh it was so moving being played on Radio 1, wow.” It was fine but I wasn’t happy then and I’m happier now as an artist and I still get to have these amazing, emotional moments with fans.

[CLICK HERE TO READ MORE…]