Posts by Emma May

Miles Francis is Making Music on His Own Terms

Miles Francis is Making Music on His Own Terms Photography by Charles Billot

New York City-based singer and multi-instrumentalist Miles Francis has collaborated with the likes of Sharon Jones and Tunde Adebimpe. Now, he's branching out on his own, filtering his training as an Afrobeat percussionist into his electropop-leaning debut album, Swimmers. To celebrate his recent three-date residency at C’mon Everybody, we talked about mentorship, David Bowie, and the responsibilities that come with being an artist.
AdHoc: How did Miles Francis come about? 
Miles Francis: It's something that I've done my whole life. Most young musicians get swept up in whatever opportunities come to them. And I was very fortunate to be swept up with Antibalas and Will Butler and a bunch of artists I've collaborated with over the years. 
[Miles Francis] came about as a result of the different collaborations and phases of my career so far all sort of coming to a head. At a certain point, I had to basically get all these ideas out. It just made sense for me to do it alone, because that's sort of where I'm most at home. It was just time for me to pursue myself.


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Brooklyn-based Barrie Found Their Bassist on Tinder

Brooklyn-based Barrie Found Their Bassist on Tinder Photography by Daniel Topete

The members of Brooklyn-based indie outfit Barrie hail, variously, from Baltimore, Boston, São Paulo, London, and Upstate New York, but they met at Greenpoint's The Lot Radio, where half of the band worked. Despite their geographical differences, they create a cohesive sound on "Canyons," their psychedelic, bass-heavy new single. On the heels of the release of "Canyons," we caught up with the band and discussed Tinder, their writing process, and their upcoming show at Baby's All Right on February 8 with NADINE and Lexie. You can listen to their new single, "Canyons," below. 

AdHoc: You’re all from very different places: England, Brazil, and the East Coast. How did you all meet?

Barrie: We all met though the Lot Radio in Greenpoint, through our friend Joe Van Moyland. He actually had the idea for the band and connected us all.

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Haley Heynderickx Finds Confidence on "Worth It"

Haley Heynderickx Finds Confidence on Photograph by Alessandra Leimer

Portland-based Haley Heynderickx has been making waves with her spirited musings on self reflection, religion, and growth. Her new single, "Worth It," explores the difficulties of defining oneself in the shadow of other's expectations. The ways in which the song unwinds itself, with a faster tempo in a dramatic buildup, is reminiscent of the triumphant feeling of overcoming those anxieties. Over winding guitar riffs, she sings, "Maybe I've, maybe I've been selfish/ Or maybe I've, maybe I've been selfless / Maybe I've, maybe I've been worthless, or / Maybe I've, maybe I've been worth it."

Over email, she told AdHoc a little bit about the song's origin story. "I was living in a house with six women at the time and attempting to pursue music as more than a bedroom act," she wrote. "In this, I was struggling to find confidence and purpose in it. Writing 'Worth It' was a cathartic release at the time, just allowing myself to take up space and make as much noise as I could in our basement without driving my roommates too crazy. After several weeks, this song got carved out. It has been through a lot and it means something new to me each time I hear it. (Unfortunately, not a Missy Elliot cover.)"

Listen to "Worth It" below, and catch her 2/9 show at Berlin.


Pow Pow Family Band's All Right is a Psychedelic Indie Pop Trip

Pow Pow Family Band's All Right is a Psychedelic Indie Pop Trip Photography by Jordan Corso.

Pow Pow Family Band draws on a variety of influences. Frontman Miles Robbins grew up with the constant hum of folk music, and told i-D that he initially bonded with bandmate Nara Shin because of their mutual admiration for LCD Soundsystem’s This Is Happening. Penned during his time as a student at Brown University, their debut record is a psychedelic reflection on the confusing period of your early 20s, blending keyboards, echoing guitar, and french horn into an album that makes the disparate feel coherent and shows us that things are, in fact, all right.

"All Right is a collection of stories about the space I found myself occupying in my early twenties," Robbins told AdHoc via email. "It was a period of discovery that contained a myriad of wonderful fleeting moments. Optimism, cynicism, love, and heartbreak took turns sleeping under my pillow. 'All Right' is a phrase which expresses to me in two words a part of the natural order that I find comforting—that energy is conserved, and that with every loss there is a relative gain. The Family Band is a spectacular group of friends and collaborators who I have worked with since that time to translate these stories and provide additional instrumental accompaniment to the narrative."

All Right is out via Modern Sky USA on 2/9. You can catch Pow Pow Family Band perform with Cotillon and Navy Gangs at Park Church Co-op on Feburary 10

Eli Sundae Premieres Glitter-Fueled Video for "Bite My Tongue"

Eli Sundae Premieres Glitter-Fueled Video for Photography by Katherine Solomon

New York-based Eli Sundae, né Eli Dreyfus, creates upbeat music infused with humor and wit, which he appropriately has dubbed “idiot rock.” His new video for “Bite My Tongue” reflects this ethos, taking a seeming jab at a genre that can sometimes be unbearably pretentious (indie rock). The video, directed by Carlen May-Mann, is an absurdist and colorful trip. Flanked by muscular sidekicks sporting hair wreaths that harken back to ancient Greek gods, he sings over a contagious bass line. At one point in the video, the song explodes into synths, and confetti pours down onto Dreyfus, who lays motionless, bathed by multicolored lights. Afterwards, the video abruptly cuts to Dreyfus, seemingly unfazed with his Greek goddess sidekick sprawled across his lap. 

Via email, Dreyfus informed AdHoc that the video takes inspiration from the "emotional beat of romantic competition, drawing in equal part from Ancient Greek Olympics and Apple's '1984' commercial."

"This video explores the pain of looking your rival in the eye," he wrote. "You hate them, because they stand between you and everything you want, and yet they are your closest equal. In that moment they understand you with more clarity and empathy than anyone."

Watch "Bite My Tongue" and listen to Eli Sundae's new EP, Eli Bloody Eli, below. 

Behind The Cover: Wax Idols Frontwoman Hether Fortune Discusses Her Portrait of Anaïs Nin

Behind The Cover: Wax Idols Frontwoman Hether Fortune Discusses Her Portrait of Anaïs Nin Artwork by Hether Fortune

This piece appears in AdHoc Issue 24.

Hether Fortune is drawn to the darker things in life. It’s a fascination you can trace to her teenage years as a self-described “angry punk,” or her work with her lovably gloomy rock band Wax Idols. Recently, she’s ventured into painting portraits, rendering friends, historical figures, and her fellow artists in pale and deep hues. Her paintings grapple with the moments of grief and joy in life, as well as the notion that the ghosts that haunt you can also provide inspiration. Ahead of her book release party on January 11 at Union Pool, where Fortune will read from her first collection of poetry, Waiting in Various Lines (2013-2017), she spoke to us about her portrait of Anaïs Nin, which appears on the cover of this month’s zine, and the therapeutic possibilities of painting. Fortune and her band Wax Idols will also perform with Future Punx and Desert Sharks on January 12 at Elsewhere.


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