By: Staff –
To celebrate the release of Toronto indie band Tom Boy’s new single “Lowrider”, the duo curated an exclusive Spotify playlist that features songs that inspired “Lowrider”. Check it out below!
Nate Daniels (Lead Vocals/Songwriter)
Radiohead – “Let Down”: I was 16 when I first heard this song and then a year later it became the anthem to my first broken heart. I played it while I walked through my hometowns streets at night, while going on road trips, and while I sparked joints in my basement room while my parents were sleeping. The lyric “don’t get sentimental, it always ends up drivel” was typed to me on MSN Messenger after I expressed my sadness about a breakup.
The Killers – “When You Were Young”: This song probably means more to me now than it did when I was playing it on repeat in my Montreal apartment in 2007. It’s driving guitars always made for good listening while I was on my bike heading to Mont Royal for Tam Tam’s and a nice afternoon drink. The memory it invokes always gives me the feeling of freedom I was enjoying at that time. Anything was possible.
Sam Fender – “Hypersonic Missile”: This song is bitter sweet for me. Sam was playing at the Horseshoe in Toronto and their booking manager asked Tom Boy to open the set. We had to decline because of a Canadian Music Week show clause, and to our dismay, we discovered that Sting had show up to the set. Even thinking about it now I get extreme FOMO. Sam has become a regular on a lot of my playlists because his lyrics are so unapologetically political in a way that doesn’t come off preachy. (And he’s a total babe).
Best Coast – “Feeling OK”: Whenever I am in the mood for 90’s nostalgia (and don’t actually want to listen to bands from the 90’s) I go to Best Coast. Their up-tempo songs, washy instrumentals, and peppy female vocals remind me of the great 90’s female stand-outs like The Cranberries, Hole, and Fiona Apple. I took this song with me on my trip to Central America and had it on repeat while I drove the windy roads of Semuc Champey, Gautemala.
Lana Del Rey – “Love”: This song also had a place on my Central American playlist but it’s memory is much darker. While coming back from a visit to some nearby waterfalls in Lake Attitlan, we were accosted by a caravan of men with machetes. One man sent an American tourist I was travelling with to the hospital with a slice to the arm. I listened to this song to soothe my jitters and soon left the little town out of fear that it might happen again. Lana has a tambour in her voice that almost acts like a meditation tape. I always fall into a trance while listening to her. It has always been a secret little goal of mine to write with her someday.
Josin – “Company (Kiasmos Remix)”: Olafur Arnalds side project Kiasmos is probably one of my all-time favourite bands. I first heard of them while recording a project in Berlin and then became obsessed when I realized I could dance, drive, chill, and fuck to them. It was by chance that I met once of their managers who then introduced me to one of their amazing female artists, Josin, who’s eerie vocal styling, drifting synths, and pulsating guitar lines (all played by Josin) reminded me of Radiohead. Josin stayed at my house while playing a show for NXNE and introduced me to her song “Company” which was remixed by none other than Kiasmos. I died. And so will you.
Dope Lemon – “Best Girl”: In today’s musical age of digital beats, digital instrumentation, and auto-tune, I often find myself being pulled to artists who stick to playing good-old-fashioned instruments and leave the over-polished studio tracking behind. Dope Lemon is shoe-gazey, lazy garage band music at its finest. When I’m feeling a little apathetic, nihilistic, or melancholic I am sure to be seen crying on a couch somewhere with them in my headphones.
The Smashing Pumpkins – “1979”: Billy Corgan’s voice is terrible and beautiful all at once. His softer tracks haunt me, and his angrier songs justify my bouts of depression. The Smashing Pumpkins were one of the first bands I ever got into thanks to my sister. When thinking about road-trip songs, this one is always on the list. This song has so many treats including the warbling of Billy’s voice, the repetitive guitar line, and a chorus that speaks to the restless nature of my generation.
Dante Berardi Jr. (Collaborator)
The War On Drugs – “Under The Pressure”: When I first heard this song I felt like I was in a car driving down the coast of anywhere and that feeling is what I wanted for “Lowrider” except on a bike, in the city at dusk, a little drunk. When I saw them at Massey I cried like a child.
DIIV – “Dopamine”: I was listening to A LOT of DIIV back when “Lowrider” was created and actually got to see them at the OLD Sonic Boom in Kensington Market and it was just magic. So much ambience and reverb. Big inspo.
BANNF – “The Great Unknown”: I love the instrumental counter melodies in this tune and the dreaminess so tried to bring that over to Lowrider. They are just a great band from Australia that are super hooky but still cool.
Junip – “Howl”: Driving, gritty, low-mid rangy. Impossible not to move to. Very different but that pulse definitely made it to Lowrider. Jose Gonzales is the king of everything and Junip is my favorite of his work.
The Neighborhood – “Sweater Weather”: Nothing to do with “Lowrider”, this is just a dope song I wish I wrote haha.
Death Cab For Cutie – “We Laugh Indoors”: I remember driving across Canada In winter many moons ago and Photo Album was on a lot. This just always felt like a great driving song.
Bruce Springsteen – “Dancing In The Dark”: THE BOSSSSSS! Impossible not to dance to. We tried to channel that in Lowrider A LOT. Didn’t do as well as this but we tired.
Metric – “Stadium Love”: FAT ANALOG LOW FI BUT POLISHED. Big time inspo here for lowrider despite being completely different.
Arcade Fire – “Ready to Start”: Big time on-the-road album/song for Nate and I in the beginning days of CAIRO (which became Tom Boy). Great road trip tune.
Decades – “Tonight Again”: Nate and I are BIGGGGGG shoegaze fans and we both fell in love with this band and album and it turned out Crispin Day (who produces Tom Boy) worked on this record. Felt right to include it as we both had many summer days/nights in parks and biking around Toronto with this in our headphones.
Beach House – “Dark Spring”: This came out after Lowrider was written but it felt like it fit. Beach House is a huge influence of mine sonically. When sound people say “That’s too much reverb” I say “Think Beach House and Fleet Foxes”. True Story.