Single Reviews: April 10th 2022: Skinny Dippers, Courting, Joe Holt, Flagman, The Heart Attack-Acks

Photo by Armin

Wedding Ring by Skinny Dippers

indie rock

"Wedding Ring" is a peachy slice of innocent indie rock from New York via Skinny Dippers. The single uses the melodic elements and sentimentality of Midwestern emo rock a la American Football and strips them back to a more straightforward folk-rock number in the vein of the underrated North Carolina band The Connells. There are some nice lyrics ("Can't say I love you, so I'm looking for a synonym") and a killer melody in the chorus that is really quite sweet. Its weather references and chilled vibes make for an excellent addition to your spring playlist. 

Tennis by Courting


What's the cost of love? Not only do we invest our time and emotional energy into the people who capture our hearts, but we also end up shelling out hard-earned cash for necessary birthday presents and obligatory Valentine's Day dinners. It's enough to make one see the whole rigmarole of romance through Schopenhauer's lens; "In our monogamous part of the world, to marry means to halve one's rights and double one's duties." That's the topic of discussion on Courting's recent single "Tennis", a quirky and exciting serving (pun intended) of post-punk-cum-indie rock. And what's their anti-dote to the chaos of modern relationships? "Just playin' Tennis," a fantastic chorus; as simple as it is odd. With hammering bass, steady and vintage drum sounds, jangly guitars, surrealist lyrics, and an intense vocal delivery, Courting have created a killer track.  

Not Satisfying by Joe Holt


"I feel lost, I feel lonely, I'm tired of trying," is not an easy confession to make. We all feel hopeless sometimes, but rarely do we allow ourselves to be vulnerable enough to let others know. On "Not Satisfying", Joe Holt lays all his private struggles out on the table, for better or worse. This track is up close and personal; you can hear the slight nuances of the acoustic guitar strings tinker as they are plucked in the intro. Holt delivers his words earnestly, choosing every note carefully. The second verse introduces a nice piano, an electronic drum pattern, and lush textures to bring the track towards folktronica, though a middle-eight based on swells of strings brings Holt's quiet folk to cinematic levels.  

Sniff by Flagman


On "Sniff", Orlando, Florida's "Flagman" start right off the bat with their aggressive, strange, and ultimately spectacular brand of alt-rock metal. There are some sinister sounds here. Between the chugging bass, unfiltered distortion, bizarre singing, and overall goofy darkness, Flagman would feel right at home on a compilation with System of A Down and Primus. In just under two minutes, the song goes from wild assault to a quiet-as-a-whisper ride cymbal before bringing the energy back up to peak tension, like a kettle boiling, the singers chiming the eldritch line. "I don't think you want to know." Top.

Never​-​Ending Shitshow by The Heart Attack-Acks


Life sucks. Between brighter epochs of summer strawberries and rock concert bliss, bills, social expectations, and panic attacks ruin things." "It's always one thing after another," offers the vocalist of this duo, who are from Queens, NY, but provide little other info on themselves. Arpeggiated synths, solid drums, and ascending, sometimes dodgy vocals feature on this vintage 80's throwback that sounds like Visage in places. The song reaches the five-minute mark. This length would be ok if the word 'sh*t' weren't repeated so many times. Unfortunately, Sh*it is just one of those unpleasant words that isn't nice to hear more than once in a while; it conjures images of brown sludge and putrid smells. That makes the radio edit (generously provided with the release on Bandcamp), much more of an enjoyable listen.