Baker's Dozen: Foxes, Caroline Polachek, and Kim Petras' Perpetual Ascension

Baker's Dozen: Foxes, Caroline Polachek, and Kim Petras' Perpetual Ascension

Baker's Dozen is a regular thing I, Larry Fitzmaurice, do for paid subscribers—but today it's free because I yet again have a huge backlog I'm trying to get ahead of. (I mentioned my name here because a recent subscriber recently pointed out that there's sometimes no way to tell who actually writes this newsletter. It's me, Larry Fitzmaurice! I'll be doing this regularly, sorry.)

Anyway, there'll still be a paid Baker's Dozen coming on Friday too—and some great news, as of today my paid subscribers have raised over $3,000 to the National Network of Abortion Funds.($3,160.13, to be exact.) I will continue to donate all newsletter revenue as long as I can, I'd love to get to $5,000 at the very least.

Hovvdy, "Cathedral"

Hovvdy are probably the most underrated indie band at this point? At least top three or five? What they do is extremely nourishing and straightforward but they've really established their sound too while being undeniably influenced by Alex G, who obviously looms large over indie in general. Longtime subscribers will remember when I shared their cover of Coldplay's "Warning Sign" a while back too. Great band.

Meat Wave, "Cosmic Zoo"

My wife sent this to me after having it pop up on a Protomartyr-generated Spotify playlist (we are a Protomartyr household). I know these guys are beloved by garage rock types, they didn't really stick with me in the past but I do enjoy this song. They just put out a new album recently, I'll get around to it.

GRAACE, "Sentimental"

Phoebe Bridgers in 2022 is basically James Blake in 2011: Every third or fourth new artist is about to try to sound like her, which makes sense since she is the rare "indie" artist who's reasonably real-deal famous at this point. So yeah, here's a huge pivot from Australian singer-songwriter Grace Pitts, who now goes by GRAACE. GRAACE? Alvvays? Hovvdy? All these extra letters lying around during a time of inflation? Unconscionable.

Joywave, "Goodbye Tommy"

Of course, here you have the other side of major-label indie trends, in which bands like Joywave endlessly regurgitate the same synth-pop signifiers that actual indies like Terrible and Kanine were associated with in the early 2010s. You have to imagine there's a hat-tip of sorts here to the long-lost Chromatics album Dear Tommy, since this song is kind of a head-empty take on the Johnny Jewel aesthetic in general.‎

Slikback, "Ascension"

Slikback is so good, making the kind of hypnotic tunnel-vision dance music that feels so cavernous ‎that it knocks you on your ass. Here's a track from one of his pair of 2019 EPs, I'll share another one next week—if you are of the uninitiated, go forth to his Bandcamp.

Foxes, "Two Kinds of Silence"

The Kick almost feels a little dated, not that I am holding that against Foxes. She executes what is a solidly mid-2010s electro-pop sound (dig the "Midnight City"-ish saxes all over the album) in a way that's very capable. Call it comfort food, she's not reinventing the wheel at all but it's extremely satisfying if you're even mildly interested in music that sounds like this.

Kim Petras, "Treat Me Like a Slut"

Longtime readers know Kim Petras is a problematic fave, the "problematic" part specifically referring to her decision to continue working with an alleged rapist. The Slut Pop EP is on the whole a lot better than her awful, chart-topping, and history-making Sam Smith collab "Unholy," and it's 100% produced by Dr. Luke, whose involvement in music that sounds and lyrically resembles what's going on here is, well, certainly suspect! Interesting that Dr. Luke is nowhere near "Unholy," assuming that Petras is still locked into a deal with him a la Doja Cat, all eyes will be on what she decides to do when that deal is up.

Wilkinson, "No One Else" [ft. Kanine and Clementine Douglas]

I am such a sucker for this type of drum'n'bass, the stuff that sounds neon and electric and maybe even a little weirdly slowed-down even though the BPM is obviously bumping. Almost creates a trop-house effect? Anyway, sick drop, there's also a very goofy Childish Gambino interpolation on the Wilkinson album that is embarrassing, what else do you expect from this corner of dance music?

22nd Jim, "Steppin on Ni**as" ‎[ft. ALLBLACK]

"Well, well, welllllllllll."‎ Amazing ad-lib, great beat too.

Fire-Toolz, "Where on EARTH Is My Sacchidananda?"

Fire-Toolz' Eternal Home features all of the Weather Channel-meets-Darkthrone intensity that we've come to expect and cherish from Angel Marcloid, but she also goes deep into post-hardcore and shoegaze textures that serve as a reminder of her impressive and seemingly boundless versatility. I interviewed Angel last year for the newsletter, you can check that one out here.

Candace, "Great Basin"

Huge "Just Like Honey" vibes here, to the point where it could be considered plagarism...there's been worse crimes committed, though. G‎ood record here overall, the weirder corners of it make you want something even weirder from Candace, but there's always time to explore the great unknown.

Caroline Polachek, "Ocean of Tears"

Caroline Polachek's bound to drop soon-ish, right? Like, Q1 2023? Anyway. Finally dug into Pang recently and it's excellent, of course you knew that, in the three years since it came out she became both cultishly beloved and someone who is also definitely (apologies for this) for basics as well. I love the big drop-out drop on this, when she does the wind-tunnel Coors-y thing she's really on one.

PinkPantheress, "All my friends know"

Maybe the only PinkPantheress song I haven't committed to memory at this point, although I'm well on my way...feels like her music has been in the universe for forever now, and not just because her whole "deal" has a little bit of baked-in nostalgia. Not enough people draw the comparison to Saint Etienne but it's definitely there, can't wait to hear where she goes next obviously just like everyone else.‎‎

Subscribe to Last Donut of the Night

Sign up now to get access to the library of members-only issues.
Jamie Larson