5 songs you must hear this week: 14 February 2022

If winter has you down, take heart. We’re already at the point when we’ve begun talking about the new music that will be out this spring.

1. Dear Rouge, Small Talk
Spirit (Phermone Recordings)
Recommended If You Like: Canadian husband-and-wife teams

Danielle and Drew McTaggert will soon be back with a new Dear Rouge album for the first time in almost four years when Phases, Spirit (their third) arrives on April 8. There’s a stripped-back feel to this second single (the follow-up to Fake Fame) with an often acoustic arrangement. The twelve-track album will feature contributes from Lights and Brendan Canning from Broken Social Scene.

2. Charming Disaster, Radium Girls
Our Lady of Radium (Independent)
RIYL: The history of physics

This song grabbed my attention for two reasons. First, the band is being promoted as a “Goth folk” duo, a genre that I’d never heard of before. And second, this is a concept album exploring the life and times of Marie Curie, the Polish Nobel Prize-winning scientist who made some incredible contributions to physics in the early 1900s, including the discovery of the elements polonium and radium. Interesting idea for an album, no?

3. Wallows, Especially You
Tell Me That It’s Over (Atlantic)
RIYL: Twee-ish pop

Out of LA comes this trio with a single about the stresses that come in the early days of any relationship. They’ve had a couple of viral hits on Spotify, which was enough to get Ariel Rechtshaid (he’s worked with Adele, Vampire Weekend, and HAIM) to produce this album. It’ll be here on March 25.

4. Elephant Stone, M. Lonely
Le voyage de M. Lonley dans la lune (Independent)
RIYL: Psych-y stuff

I’ve been a fan of Rishi Dhir’s Montreal band for what seems like forever. For 13 years, they’ve always sung in English. This record, however, is a departure from that with everything being done in French. The first single is based around a fictional hermit whose lifestyle comes into vogue when something happens to the planet that forces everyone else to be hermits, too. I get that.

5. Common Deer, 90 Days
Maximalist (Independent)
RIYL: Pleasant Canadian alt-pop

Common Deer has its roots in Guelph dating back to 2013. They slowly and methodically worked on their indie-folk sound, spending three years on their first EP. Fast-forward to 2022 and we have an altered lineup with a more synth-driven approach. Their first full-length album will be here on April 1. Fun fact: They’re managed by the same people as The Tragically Hip.

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