by EJ Coleman
Everyone loves a sequel, right? That’s right, campers, we’re back for another stay at Bandcamp Camp. Don’t forget to bring your blank CDs and sleeping bags, remember to leave the wasp nest outside the showers alone, and keep track of your headphones, because you’re gonna want them.
I hope you kept your fingers nimble. We’re making a hell of alot of friendship bracelets this year.
Track: “San Cristobal” (Jul. 2010)
Artist: Mal Blum
Tags: punk, alternative, folk, grunge, indie, singer-songwriter
Favorite Lyric: “You have not been writing / me as often as I wished / and sometimes I think I left you / just to see if I’d be missed”
If I lived in an alternate universe where there were robotically enhanced humans in my western frontier town, this would be the song that plays as every loose-ended plot suddenly connects itself in my mind. The song is not about anything like that, but that’s the image it brings to mind. Otherwise, it is another good example of the dexterity of Mal Blum’s discography and, to be more specific, Every Time You Go Somewhere, which spans from introverted Juno soundtrack b-sides to plucky western circuses that are only missing the whistle sting.
Track: “let’s walk across this forest, i can feel that everything is real again” (Mar. 2017)
Artist: In Love With A Ghost
Tags: chillwave, electronic, ambiant, chillout, dream, electronica
Favorite Lyric: N/A
It’s a song about two witch sisters? What more could you want? A friend of mine sent me this in our joint search for more queer musicians and found Maël, aka In Love With A Ghost. All of their music feels like walking through the background of someone’s travel vlog in a really pleasant and unassuming way. This song in particular lets you sink into the atmosphere and really become one with this enchanting world they’ve created. (They also have a pretty big back catalogue, which is always a plus.)
Track: “The Ocean” (Mar. 2013)
Artist: The Exploration
Tags: experimental, indie, spoken word
Favorite Lyric: “Melted together, stronger than ever, our love is like glue to the floor.”
Not to self-promo, but eighty percent of the new music I listen to regularly I first hear of from my wonderful and talented peers. This band, like many, comes at the recommendation of Sarah Bel. If I had to trust my public consumption of music and internal choices to one person it would be her. Sarah Bel could dictate and direct the soundtrack of my life and I would thank her. (Of course, in this case, I do hate her a little bit for getting me to like a dead band.)
Of course, for all that I disparage the way men are allowed to have “interesting” (i.e. bad) singing voices but women are criticized for having even a slightly imperfect tone, I do have to admit I like the weird ones. Not the grating, or the screechy, or the rough speaking tone that betrays the lack of talent behind it, but the distinctive few that you hear and know immediately because there’s no one quite like it. The Exploration is one such act, as seen here in this La Dispute-esque spoken word journey. I don’t always like the hoarse shouting, or the harsh and loud, but here it works.
Track: “Trans Day of Revenge” (Jun. 2016)
Artist: G.L.O.S.S. (Girls Living Outside Society’s Shit)
Tags: punk, badgirlcore, d-beat, hardcore punk, transbitcheswithproblems
Favorite Lyric: “UNTAMED WOMEN / SCARRED BY MEN / WE BREAK THE CYCLE WITH REVENGE”
The most heartbreaking part of writing these is the moment when you find something really cool and then immediately are struck down by the first page of Google results being the band’s breakup. If only I had cleared out my bookmarks sooner! I could’ve better supported these kick-ass ladies! That being said, this track (still available on Bandcamp, where proceeds are donated to a homeless shelter in Olympia, where they are from) is still awesome.
Tomorrow: a catchy commercial you wish you could hate, an indie fan favorite, and a song I definitely didn’t hear of from a cartoon.