Editor’s Picks 98: Superbloom, Nick & June, eundohee, Claud, Arliston, & Kaleah Lee!

Atwood Magazine's Editor's Picks 98
Atwood Magazine's Editor's Picks 98
Atwood Magazine is excited to share our Editor’s Picks column, written and curated by Editor-in-Chief Mitch Mosk. Every week, Mitch will share a collection of songs, albums, and artists who have caught his ears, eyes, and heart. There is so much incredible music out there just waiting to be heard, and all it takes from us is an open mind and a willingness to listen. Through our Editor’s Picks, we hope to shine a light on our own music discoveries and showcase a diverse array of new and recent releases.
This week’s Editor’s Picks features Superbloom, Nick & June, eundohee, Claud, Arliston, and Kaleah Lee!

Atwood Magazine Editor's Picks 2020 Mic Mitch

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“Tiny Bodyguard”

by Superbloom

I‘ve already established myself as a superfan of Superbloom, giving the Brooklyn band’s 2021 debut album a perfect 10/10 rating and praising them for crafting a dynamic outpouring of unapologetic, impassioned grunge: “An enthralling ’90s revival comes to life with cinematic strength and wonder in Pollen, a radiant explosion of overdrive and intimate energies that lights a thrilling, unforgettable fire within.” I recognize my inherent bias here, but Superbloom’s latest single nevertheless hit me like a ton of bricks. A cinematic wave of visceral alternative sound washes over the ears on “Tiny Bodyguard,” a raw reckoning full of aching passion and emotional turmoil.

Life's a Blur - Superbloom
Life’s a Blur – Superbloom
My tiny bodyguard
She fills the emptiness into my arm
Her heart attacking all the pain
I’m feeling swell
But I’m not well
I like to bend the light
Refill to amplify his suicide
Discourse weighs heavy on my brain
Light dynamite so I don’t fight

Released today (May 4), “Tiny Bodyguard” is the second single taken off Superbloom’s forthcoming EP Life’s a Blur, out June 8. The follow-up to Pollen marks an evolution – and an expansion – for the still burgeoning alternative rock band. Lead single “Head First” heralded their 2023 return this March with roaring guitars, heavy drums, and a heated, sonically charged energy throughout. In contrast, “Tiny Bodyguard” is the whisper that fills a room; a gently but mighty giant that channels the specters of Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins into the 2020s with lush, grungy grace.

I’ll never try to breathe out slowly
I’ll never try to talk blindfolded
I reach for my soul
It’s covered in wool
I’ve always been lucky
Trust me I’ll be fine

It’s a personal favorite amongst the band of Dave Hoon (vocals/guitars), Tim Choate (guitars), Brian DiMeglio (bass) and Matteo Dix (drums), who see this song as proof that they are so much more than a monochrome alternative band. “We like pop, and this is kind of the first song where we’ve really mixed things up and just indulged our pop sensibility,” Dix says. “Plus I don’t think Oasis are getting back together anytime soon, so there’s a Wonderwall-shaped hole in people’s hearts and we’re filling it with tiny bodyguard.”

At the core of this hauntingly intimate emo daydream is a yearning toward escape and breaking away from the weight of (a) the world, and (b) our own emotions. “I’m feeling swell, but I’m not well,” vocalist Hoon admits in a husky, hushed, and heavy voice, going on to later ask, “Can I file away the real and dip my toe into the grave? Disarm these vultures in my head… They’re counting down until they’re fed.

The song’s chorus is a moment of catchy, cathartic, and utterly irresistible release. The song’s heavy tension spills out in a subtle, subdued moment of raw exposure. “I’ll never try to breathe out slowly,” Hoon declares, his voice rising and falling in moody, brooding waves alongside Tim Choate’s glistening arpeggiating guitars.

I’ll never try to breathe out slowly
I’ll never try to talk blindfolded
I reach for my soul
It’s covered in wool
I’ve always been lucky
Trust me I’ll be fine
I’ll be fine…

As intimate as it is intense, “Tiny Bodyguard” stands out as another taste of alternative gold ready to win over all who listen. Superbloom’s new song is a nuanced, exposed, and breathtakingly raw; we wouldn’t have them any other way.

You say I’ll be here tomorrow
Another dollar borrowed
To make it go away
You say I’ll be here tomorrow
Another pill to swallow
To make it go away



“Hugh Grant & His Consequence”

by Nick & June

With a line “you don’t need an umbrella to know where the rain is coming from,” “Hugh Grant & His Consequence” was always destined to be my new favorite song. Is it a bit kitschy? Sure, but in the context of Nick & June’s music, it’s absolutely gut-wrenching. The latest single taken off the indie duo’s forthcoming EP Beach Baby, Baby (out May 12 via Monty People) is hushed and hypnotic: A raw, cinematic upheaval of the heart spilled out in hauntingly emotive alternative sound. Landing somewhere halfway between the indie folk, indie rock, and indie pop, the duo of Nick Wolf and Suzie-Lou Kraft demand our undivided attention in a song that aches with a subtle, seductive intensity.

Hugh Grant & His Consequence - Nick & June
Hugh Grant & His Consequence – Nick & June
Can you remember when
we had this secret party in my cage?

This is not an adult’s advice:
‘Give me your worst fake name’

This is water, this is peace.
Meet me in my kitchen brain

We’re not a nuanced portrait,
just a sketch for holidays
My mental health is a campaign
of an ’80s documentary

But you don’t need an umbrella
to know where the rain is coming from

“When ‘Hugh Grant & His Consequence’ was written, we had just finished reading some David Foster Wallace stuff, including his essay ‘This Is Water,'” Nick Wolf tells Atwood Magazine. “Also, the movie Call Me by Your Name plays a role, and of course the classic ‘Hugh Grant’ trope. From these approaches about growing up and finding oneself, we wrote a story about this person who writes a letter to an alternative, former version to him/herself and the question on why, after all, melancholy always returns. We love to play this game with different points of contact – especially if they are perhaps a little misleading at first.”

“We have always been inspired by various things like books, movies or music itself of course,” he adds. “But this time it was even more special. We came out of a long break, suddenly we were in the middle of a pandemic. We watched, read, and listened to a lot… of many classics, all-time favorites or hidden treasures we’ve stumbled about. That’s how it all flowed into the EP. Maybe that’s why the overall concept of the EP has a cinematic touch.”

Nick & June shine a warm light through the haze, coming to an emotional climax in their track’s captivating, cathartic chorus:

This time we break promises
This time we spell emptiness
This time when we’re lost and dance
With Hugh Grant and his consequence
This time we sell loneliness
We’ve been made, I’d never guess
This time when we’re lost and dance
With Hugh Grant and his consequence

This music hurts in all the right ways. Cinematic and soul-stirring, “Hugh Grant & His Consequence” holds nothing back in reckoning with oneself and one’s world. It’s poetic, unfiltered, and uncompromisingly graceful through and through. If ever we were to dub a song an “indie anthem,” this song is the benchmark – capturing the emotion, the energy, and the intimacy we look for from our favorite music.

I wrote a letter to a smoked suburban version of ourself
I really fit in an empty script, let’s cut our hair in silence
And if you lose? Change the rules
Just keep smiling with an abstract elation, a lazy ‚die, future, die’
In the first two-thirds a collage
of my walls of enthusiasm
Take your radical self-assessment
to know where the days are coming from
This time we break promises
This time we spell emptiness
This time when we’re lost and dance
With Hugh Grant and his consequence
This time we sell loneliness
We’ve been made, I’d never guess
This time when we’re lost and dance
With Hugh Grant and his consequence
I stare at us from 10 degrees, we sell our NY mysteries



“Hummingbird”

by eundohee

There’s a gentle beauty about “Hummingbird“: eundohee’s first song of the year glows with lilting light and gorgeous melodic warmth as she observes one of nature’s oddities. I imagine that the inspiration for this track may have struck from learning that hummingbirds are the only species that can fly backwards; in many ways, the poetry writes itself.

But it takes a delicate touch to evoke the sense of wonder, vulnerability, and longing that radiates throughout eundohee’s music. The South Korean singer/songwriter aches with raw, heartfelt, and exposed emotion as she compares herself to these finger-sized flying phenomena, asking, “Can I be a hummingbird? I’ll do my best anyway,” in a chorus that feels as soft as it is stunning.

Hummingbird - eundohee
Hummingbird – eundohee
They can fly backwards and upside-down
Spreading the lightness of life
Their scattered feathers are transparent
Without any regret
Can I be a hummingbird
I’ll do my best anyway
Can I be a hummingbird
I’ll do my best anyway

The lead single off eundohee’s forthcoming EP Kookaburra (out May 19, 2023 via Beeline Records), “Hummingbird” is a personal favorite as well as an enchanting, entrancing introduction for those unfamiliar with the South Korean artist, whose music bridges indie folk / indie rock divide.

eundohee debuted in 2018 with the three-track EP Weak, and has been spellbinding audiences ever since; she released her sophomore EP All in 2019, followed by the three-track My Neighborhood in 2020 and her debut album, Unforeseen, in 2021. Arriving two long years later, Kookaburra highlights an artistic evolution and expansion that delves deeper into the trip-hop and post-punk worlds than ever before.

That said, “Hummingbird” is a moody indie folk whisper that fills the room with the weight of a shout. It’s a personal highlight for eundohee, and for good reason.

“‘Hummingbird’ symbolizes the enjoyment of life and the lightness of being,” she tells Atwood Magazine. “For me, a hummingbird was what I wanted to be. I often say that ‘Hummingbird’ is my favorite song from my new EP, because the lyrics are hopeful and convey the fact that there should be no pressure to become something. Of course, I’d be happy to become something I want to become and achieve the things I want to achieve, but I have realized that these things are not all that important. I was aiming to make something with a lighter, happier, and calmer sound overall.”

Tender, delicate, and altogether mesmerizing, “Hummingbird” is as beautiful a performance as it is a breathtaking display of eundohee’s talent.

They can fly backwards and upside-down
Spreading the lightness of life
Their scattered feathers are transparent
Without any regret
Can I be a hummingbird
I’ll do my best anyway
Can I be a hummingbird
I’ll do my best anyway



“Every F*cking Time”

by Claud

Claud Mintz is back in a big way.

From a “Wonderwall”-esque guitar sequence to a spirited, emotionally-charged chorus, the Chicago-born singer/songwriter’s first song of the year, “Every F*cking Time” is a raw indie anthem for all those who’ve felt let down by their loved one; who keep hoping they’ll change for the better, but are beginning to suspect they’re never going to change at all.

And it all opens with a late-night argument over Regina Spektor, with Claud pivoting their conversation and putting their partner on the defense.

Supermodels - Claud
Supermodels – Claud
They kept the bar open just for us
so we could talk without being interrupted
And we argued about Regina Spektor
I said I loved her but you think she could be better
Anyways stop changing the subject
I don’t need small talk now I’m upset
Thought we’re past the point of talking
about nothing just to talk

Released May 2, 2023 via Saddest Factory Records, “Every F*cking Time” is Claud’s first song since last summer’s bustling, buoyant standalone single, “Go Home!” – and the lead single off their forthcoming sophomore album, Supermodels (due out July 14). Intimate and honest, “Every F*cking Time” is a visceral distillation of a relationship’s breakdown as it happens in real time. Trust dissipates, leaving in its place a creeping sense of disillusionment and doubt, insecurity and heartache.

Claud’s chorus hits the nail on the head:

‘Cause I can’t believe it
when you say you love me
I just can’t believe it
cause with you there’s always something
In the back of your mind
are you done rehearsing lines?
I just can’t believe it
but I believe it every f*cking time

“‘I wrote ‘Every F*cking Time’ two summers ago,” the singer/songwriter tells Atwood Magazine. “It was hot and sticky in New York, so naturally I was spending a lot of time at home, overthinking everything… and this song was born.”

Claud’s second verse builds musical and emotional tension as they weave listeners through a story of giving, giving, giving, without a reciprocal returns. Relationships are a give and take, but the way they tell it, this one’s all one-sided:

You loved playing drums
in your high school band
God I saw so many shows
I can’t count them on two hands
By the way I’m playing next Friday
I want you there but I know you’ll miss the train
And you’ll show up
at the last song
but tell me you were there all along

The track’s music video – Claud’s directorial debut – enhances the song’s already compelling, deeply emotional experience, elevating “Every F*cking Time” to new heights. “Even as I was writing ‘Every F*cking Time’ I had flashes of what I wanted the music video to look like,” Claud says. “The songs details and specificity came straight from me, so it only felt natural to write and direct the music video too.”

“This was my first time directing, which was scary, but came easily because my vision for this song was so strong. The video wouldn’t have been the same without my co-star, Grace Kuhlenschmidt. We met on the internet early in the pandemic. I was a big fan of her comedy, and I watched every single video she posted. We quickly became friends and have been wanting to collaborate for a while, and I wrote this video concept with her in mind. Being on set with Grace was a dream come true because I got to work with my favorite comedian and a good friend all at once.'”

And I can’t believe it
when you say you love me
I just can’t believe it
cause with you there’s always something
In the back of your mind
are you done rehearsing lines?
I just can’t believe it
but I believe it every f*cking time

Claud’s music video seems to give this story a happy ending, but it doesn’t always work out that way; that friction between expectation and reality can quickly reach a boiling point and spill out not just in fights and nights full of tears, but in full-scale breakdowns – and, of course, breakups. Relationships are strong, but they’re also fragile; they need nurturing, and Claud reminds us of that timeless truth with this unfiltered, intimate anthem.

Every f*cking time
maybe it’s all sincere and I can’t hold back
From running when I
hear it
taking steps with a caution sign
Maybe it’s all sincere and I can’t hold back
from running when I
hear it
Taking steps with a caution sign
’cause I believe it every f*cking time



“Pisco Sours”

by Arliston

A beautifully brooding, smoldering reverie, Arliston’s second song of the year is a hushed, heartfelt song born from warm, distant memories and intimate, vulnerable emotions. “I am thinking it through,” vocalist Jack Ratcliffe sings, starting the song midway through a conversation with himself. A heavy cloud seems to fall around the ears as Ratcliffe teases out feelings of distress, anxiety, and yearning. “‘I’m living in my head more than I live in the room,” he confesses. “I was thinking of you peeling lemons for Pisco Sours, and how I never follow through.” This is more than being lost in thought; Arliston are closer to drowning in an emotional pool of their own creation. Achingly introspective, “Pisco Sours” is a catchy, cathartic, and confessional fever dream burning bright with feeling and memories from a past we just can’t shake.

Pisco Sours - Arliston
Pisco Sours – Arliston
I am thinking it through
‘Cause I’m living in my head
more than I live in the room

I was thinking of you
Peeling lemons for Pisco Sours
and how I never follow through
So what do you think,
Is it too early in the evening,
Too early in the evening
To escape?
So what do you think,
Is it too early in the evening,
Too early in the evening
To escape?

Released April 21 via Sob Story Records, “Pisco Sours” is the second song of the year from South London indie pop duo, following March’s dazzling “How in Heaven.” Taken off their forthcoming fourth EP (out this summer), Arliston’s latest presents them at their moodiest – and hence, their best.

Jack Ratcliffe (vocalist & instrumentalist) and George Hasbury (instrumentalist & producer) have made a name for themselves in recent years thanks to their cinematic and tender music that often glows with an ambient warmth. I previously called their song “Hold My Wine” a “bold, dramatic outpouring of cathartic introspection come to life,” and the honest truth is that “Pisco Sours” is ten times heavier, ten times more intense, and ten times more nuanced.

I was scanning the room
Seeing a catflap or open window
And wondering if I could struggle through
I was thinking of you
Waking up in the early hours
and how I never follow through

“I’m often eyeing up exits at parties, and have a general inclination towards the anti-social, so this one felt like an opportunity to get all of my grievances out on the page,” Ratcliffe tells Atwood Magazine. “I suffer from ‘the grass-is-greener-itis.’ Usually, I will wind up thinking of someone or someplace that isn’t there and deifying it/them to an unhealthy point. For example, I actually hate Pisco Sours, they’re a horrible, horrible drink made from battery acid and evil. But, somehow, in the context of a party I don’t want to be at, the memory of them is transformed into some delicious, glowing nectar and I find myself wanting to be back there, drinking them with the person in the memory more than anything else.”

“Pisco Sours” hits hard with raw lyrics and powerful vocal performance by Ratcliffe, but it’s the song’s overall production – at once intimate and cinematic – that ultimately sends shivers down the spine, making it such an undeniable winner.

“I love the combination of the ’80s toms and the soft Juno synth in the verses,” George Hasbury says. “It felt like we’d really tapped into something special when we listened back to the first bounce. There’s something so evocative and nostalgic about the soundscape in this one, it really takes you somewhere. We actually had a different chorus for this one for a long time, and it never quite felt right. Months and months later, I came into the studio and Jack had re-written it completely, and it just fit more than the original chorus ever did.”

So what do you think,
Is it too early in the evening,
Too early in the evening
To escape?
I’m under the fence
Either side is unappealing
Staying under here just feels like
Common sense

You don’t have to be a fan of the drink to be a fan of “Pisco Sours.” This is a heartbreaker for romantics and empaths everywhere.

Get up get up out of it,
You’re a rock, you’re a stone
Caught on your heels,
Well you should have known,
Were I, were I part of it, I’d deny it I’d withhold
Until it felt like home



“Out of Body”

by Kaleah Lee

Kaleah Lee’s “Out of Body” is my kind of lullaby: Released this past January, the Vancouver-based singer/songwriter’s third career single is heavy, yet light, ethereal yet grounded, and absolutely enchanting through and through. Kaleah evokes the beauty of life’s quiet moments in a softly stirring song full of warmth. The magnificence of a fleeting moment of zen is magnified for two beautifully breathtaking minutes, and for a short time, we float together with Lee on her ambient bed of indie folk and introspection.

Out of Body - Kaleah Lee
Out of Body – Kaleah Lee
Confiding in rivers
Telling my secrets to the moon
What does that make me

And what I believe in, is it true?
Feels out of body
When it’s quiet after 2
I steady my breathing
‘Cause it’s all that I can do

“‘Out of Body’ is, I think, the closest I’ve gotten to replicating how my most quiet, and some of my most valuable, moments feel,” Lee tells Atwood Magazine. “There is something special about being alone and getting that time to yourself to think and become almost hyper-aware of every thought and movement and breath you take. Those moments when you just start to think about everything.”

“I’m learning not to react to the thoughts that can, a lot of the time, be scary or super existential, instead searching for and sitting in some kind of peace buried within them, and I truly hope that ‘Out of Body’ brings that same sense of peace to anyone who might be feeling the same way that I often do.”

Upon first hearing the line, “One day I’ll wither and regrow to something new,” I jumped out of my skin; my reaction was intense and immediate. Now having sat with that line through twenty or thirty-some-odd listens, I find it almost comforting – especially as Lee continues, “For now I make notes of the greenest greens and bluest hues.” For now, she’s soaking up as much of life’s magic and wonder as she possibly can.

One day I’ll wither
And regrow to something new
For now I make notes of
The greenest greens and bluest hues
Feels out of body
When even the quiet gets loud too
But I’m breathing

‘Cause it’s all that I can do
And there’s no control to lose

“Out of Body” is a haunting experience; as she sends shivers down the spine, Kaleah Lee inspires us to soar. Her second song of the year, “All At Once” (released in late March) continues to showcase her talents as a thought-provoking lyricist and deeply expressive vocalist, setting the scene for what I can only hope is a summertime debut EP. Nonetheless, Lee has all but ensured her place as an artist to watch.



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Editor’s Picks

Atwood Magazine Editor's Picks 2020 Mic Mitch

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