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***"THE SMASHING TIMES, psychedelic twee freakbeat from a Baltimore basement, are back with Bloom their sophomore album, where they explode with a sound that’s pulling from ‘60s jangly guitars, kiwi poppers and paisley underground revivalists all at once. Instruments played by humans, bare feet touching the ground. Wrinkled button downs, sweaters filled with holes, music audibly and sometimes visibly made by humans. Can you change the strings on your guitar? Maybe, can you buy me dinner? Lock up your Rickenbackers, Thee Jasmine Monk is coming to town, can they stay on your couch?."—Ferd Merkin, Summer 2022. Released by Spain's Meritorio and pressed on green vinyl.

LP $19.95

12/02/2022  

MER 039 


Love Interest by Model Shop

Model Shop

Love Interest
Meritorio

***Rising from Seattle's indie pop and rock scenes in 2019, Model Shop was the natural next step for longtime friends and bandmates Kevin Emerson and Ethan Jones, who played together in indie pop darlings Math and Physics Club. Over the years, they had crossed paths with bassist Jen Fox, and bonded over their love of melodic, effervescent pop music. After playing their first shows just before the pandemic, the band tracked their debut LP, Love Interest, mostly in their separate rooms, before coming together to finish vocals and mix with Martin Feveyear in the fall of 2021. Combining sparkling melodies, iridescent harmonies, and breezy, wistful guitars, Model Shop’s tightly crafted pop songs frame modern stories of love and longing through a nostalgic lens, evoking lush summer drives and luminous city nights.

LP $19.95

12/02/2022 0794020126399 

MER 040 


In The Marigolds by Jim Nothing

Jim Nothing

In The Marigolds
Meritorio

***Christchurch/Auckland DIYers JIM NOTHING are back with their debut album In The Marigolds. The sound of the album has strong roots in the classic '80s and '90s indie rock of the land it was born in, but other influences can be heard—especially the likes of The Go-Betweens, Breeders and Guided by Voices. It’s a varied, but cohesive album that brims with pleasantly scuffed, quietly considered charm: slightly-delic, all-out-rockers, reflective numbers and quirky perspectives, pitting JAMES SULLIVAN's salty vocals and jangling guitar against ANITA CLARK's candied vocals and violin. But also this album has at its core a feeling of homeliness, an understated dedication to DIY music making and the kiwi tradition of tinkering away in the garage. Songs nod openly to the South Island sounds-of-yesteryear without feeling hamstrung by nostalgic whiff. Rather Jim Nothing implement the rickety gallop of The Bats (Seahorse Kingdom) or chug-a-chug moves of 3D's (Yellow House) as a bed to bud their own groggy-headed guitar-steez. "Never Come Down" sports the kind of spring-loaded chorus Tamaki Makaurau futurist P.H.F. might mess around with, while "Borrowed Time" pits power-pop urgency against the easy thrum of Melted Ice Cream alumni, Salad Boys. Released by Spain's Meritorio and pressed on white vinyl.

LP $19.95

10/21/2022  

MER 038 


On An Unhistoric Night by Best Bets

Best Bets

On An Unhistoric Night
Meritorio

***BEST BETS are a power pop band from Aotearoa, New Zealand. Formed by OLLY CRAWFORD ELLIS and JAMES HARDING (TRANSITORS), they released their first EP, Life Under the Big Top, in 2018, with James’ brother LUKE and MATT PHIMMAVANH rounding out the lineup. JOE SAMPSON (SALAD BOYS, T54) joined afterwards. Their debut album, On An Unhistoric Night, could perhaps be described as a series of homages; a bunch of ballads, some tearjerkers, with a few earworms thrown in. On An Unhistoric Night talks about New Jack Swing artists who were formerly Olympic athletes; 11th century monarchs; Italian sports cars (and car salesmen); Open Polytechnic ads of the late 90s; Whose Line is it Anyway?; Subbuteo champions and Elvis impersonators. It explores hubris, hopelessness and purpose in life, pop culture detritus and everyday ennui underpinned by humour, guitar heroics and catchy bloody hooks. The album is a hi-fi effort by producer BRIAN FEARY, who notably has worked with a number of excellent Christchurch bands—Wurld Series, Salad Boys and The Dance Asthmatics to name a few. You might like this album if you appreciate bands like The Replacements, Teenage Fanclub, Buzzcocks, Big Star and The Go-Betweens. Pressed on orange vinyl.

LP $19.95

07/15/2022 0719243892340 

MER 033 


All The Rest Of My Heads by Capitol

Capitol

All The Rest Of My Heads
Meritorio

***Proudly part of Hamilton, Ontario’s rising indie music scene, CAPITOL's eclectic sound fuses '80s New Wave with modern alternative and dream pop. The follow-up to their debut 2019 LP Dream Noise is an upcoming 4-song EP, All the Rest of My Heads. Pressed on milky clear vinyl.

12" $17.00

07/15/2022  

MER 029 


***RURAL FRANCE—a collaboration between TOM BROWN and ROB FAWKES that began in 2017 as they both adapted to leaving London for the greener climes of Wiltshire, UK. Armed with a bunch of jangly demos, roughly hewn in numerous bedrooms and garages, they made their first album Two Drink Maximum in 2018, released on legendary Australian label Half a Cow. After releasing the follow-up Damp Spirit EP, the duo decided to forgo the studio to make their next record in Rob’s garage. Inspired by the hissy ‘if it sounds good it is good’ aesthetic of Guided By Voices, they set about recording a batch of songs that refracted the Beach Boys, GBV and Teenage Fanclub through the cynical lens of getting older. With its dry lyricism, warped fuzz guitars and buzzing synths, RF is the sound of Rural France distilled; an ode to both the pop nuggets of the 60s and the collective shoulder shrug of the 90s. Tom says: “The songs were mostly written during the heatwave of 2018, spurred on by Beach Boys bootlegs and a World Cup. Half-drunk on the sun and Brian Wilson’s genius, I’d make the short journey from the garden to my guitar to try and get down some vague ideas that were forming in the haze of that sweltering suburban summer.” Pressed on yellow vinyl.

LP $19.95

07/15/2022  

MER 030 


Claudia's Ethereal Weaver by Sad Eyed Beatniks

Sad Eyed Beatniks

Claudia's Ethereal Weaver
Meritorio

***"Claudia's Ethereal Weaver doesn’t have too much of a cohesive story to it, but it encompasses a good amount of my last year and a half: flipping through old Life and National Geographic magazines, taking long walks through San Francisco, and playing SAD EYED BEATNIKS live for the first time. Thanks to MIKE RAMOS, KARINA GILL and KATI MASHIKIAN, we were able to play through a number of these songs before I sat down to record them. Prior to this, most Sad Eyed Beatniks recordings were the first or second attempt at me writing and performing the song. Suddenly, I had to remember both the words and chords and played tracks like 'Hysterical Rooters,' 'Who’s That,' and 'Oh Hallo' well over ten times; which is pretty unheard of in SEBs history. Fortunately, these are paired with impromptu tracks like 'Free Composition Number 6' and 'Ring Around Annie;' as first takes are often the best takes." Pressed on green vinyl.

LP $19.95

07/15/2022  

MER 032 


Vs. California by Semi Trucks

Semi Trucks

Vs. California
Meritorio

***SEMI TRUCKS, created, fronted, and curated by California bred BRENDAN SEPE, are a "magic school bus"-esque escapade on track to bring art pop to the top of the charts. The duality of Sepe’s teenage-esque, yet cosmopolitan song writing charms to the point of blushing all listeners—with me being no exception. You may know Sepe from his prior engagement to the band the PESOS. This led him to get his foot in the door in the dank, dark music scene of Los Angeles. Los Angeles, where dreams are chewed up and spit out. Fortunately, Sepe has no dreams. He tells me all he truly wants is to be heard by kids twenty years from now in hopes to inspire them. He’s a man of the future. Laying tile by day, and laying tile by the next morning, Sepe aches to create and has done so immensely with his debut Vs, California. The Semi Trucks are like eating your favorite American meal laced with sincerity, struggles, love, freedom and euphoria. Semi Trucks, in the words of Brendan Sepe to you, 'thank you, for being there.'”—Noah Nash. Pressed on blue vinyl.

LP $19.95

07/15/2022  

MER 031 


***SLACK TIMES is a Birmingham, AL-based jangle pop band featuring CHRIS MCCAULEY (guitar, vocals), WILL STEWART (guitar, vocals), and STUART NORMAN (guitar). They craft melodic, guitar-driven songs that draw from a range of shared influences including early Athens, Georgia pop. This new release features six brand new songs, along with eight songs from the band's previous EPs from 2021, all released on vinyl (red) for the first time.

LP $19.95

07/15/2022 0729208215206 

MER 036 


***"The five members of STEPHEN'S SHORE (Sweden), arguably one of Europe’s finest janglepop bands of today, share a love for California, skateboarding, moody pop songs and jangly guitars. You can tell from their sound that pop music is in their DNA—kind of a common theme in the country of Sweden. Stephen’s Shore play a special kind of pop though. The band’s newest release is a 4-song EP called Green, which follows the Brisbane Radio EP (2021) and the September Love LP (2018). To be fair, I loved the Brisbane Radio EP and would have been happy if the band had just kind of copied that EP song-for-song. But now that I’ve heard the Green EP, I’m amazed by the growth of the band. Stephen’s Shore sound more confident, patient and in fuller posession of their powers than before. Unafraid to let their strong melodies simmer and their guitars jangle, Stephen’s Shore will slowly break down your defenses and let their songs find a permanent home in the reward centre of your brain. The first song to find its way? Probably Ocean’s Calling, which I think is the best Stephen’s Shore song to date. I could play that one all day, and immediately feel like I’m taking a beach walk during a gorgeous sunset."—Niek, Add To Want List. Pressed on green vinyl.

12" $17.00

07/15/2022  

MER 034