Tag Archives: Sheer Mag

Album of the Day: Sheer Mag, “A Distant Call”

Over the course of three EPs, as well as their 2017 debut LP Need to Feel Your Love, Philadelphia’s Sheer Mag established themselves as both disciples and masters of ‘70s hard rock. And while their latest album, A Distant Call, doesn’t stray from that course, it brings more polish to the proceedings, spiking the songs with a healthy dose of gloss and glam. The band has long eschewed the braggadocio and sleaze associated with the testosterone-heavy titans of hard rock (as well as the goofy revivalism of some of their peers) in favor of social critiques and earnest romanticism. But on A Distant Call, they take their message one step further: these arena-ready anthems are vehicles for the most personal and politically astute songs of their career.

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Big Ups: Hop Along Pick Their Favorite Records on Bandcamp

Hop Along

Photos by Tonje Thilsen

When Hop Along singer-guitarist Frances Quinlan began writing songs for her band’s new record, her main goal was to find something new to say. “As you get older, the risk of repeating yourself just grows ever more,” she says. “I tend to go over childhood and family and those kinds of topics that I just can’t seem to diverge from, so I’m always working on at least finding more creative ways to repeat myself, if nothing else.”

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Sheer Mag Place Their Faith in Love and Dissent

Sheer Mag

Photo by Marie Lin.

It’s been just over 48 years since the Stonewall riots, an event identified as a turning point in the gay rights movement in America. There were subsequent raids and protests during the late ’70s and early ’80s in Canada as well, with Operation Soap and gay rights activists who resisted against their provincial government. As a result, Quebec enacted legislation that protected from discrimination over sexual orientation. Not all movements net tangible results, and neither are those results a fix-all, but what they do demonstrate is that resistance and dissent can bring about change.

Organized, impassioned rebellion against oppression is an act of optimism—a belief that, in time, things can get better. That same spirit of hopeful resistance courses throughout Sheer Mag’s gritty rock ‘n’ roll.

From the first notes of the glam-rock strut “Meet Me In The Street,” which opens their new record Need To Feel Your Love (which, fittingly, contains a song inspired by the Stonewall riots), the Philadelphia band invites unity, dissent, and disorder. “When we walk together, it feels all right! Meet me in the street!” frontwoman Tina Halladay thunders, adding, “Come on down and get in the mix.”

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The Best Albums of 2016 So Far

best of 2016 so far

  A one-stop guide for catching up on the best releases of 2016 to date.

Every year brings with it more music than any one person can possibly consume. Even if you stopped sleeping and eating and did nothing but listen to music all day, every day, you’d only be able to get through roughly 13,000 albums in a year. Given that, we’ve decided to make your search for your next favorite record a little easier. These are the records released so far this year that we just can’t stop playing.

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