Hardly Art

Watch Marinero’s official video for “Through the Fog,” a new offering from Hella Love

TUE, MAR 30, 2021

On May 21st, Hardly Art will release Hella Love, the label debut from Marinero (aka Jess Sylvester), and an album about closing a chapter, with care and presence. It is a love letter to the Bay Area, where he grew up before relocating to Los Angeles. Directed by Holden Boyles, “Through the Fog,” finds Sylvester floating through San Francisco, repeatedly visited by a mysterious foggy dancer, and a writer who’s documenting his every movement. 
 
Sylvester says, “‘Through the Fog’ represents a few of the overarching themes from the record. It is about my home, but it’s also a reflection from the other side of addiction, now being sober, and how my loved ones helped me through some dark times. I also think with the pandemic in mind, this song also speaks to how the love from friends and family has gotten me through all of this. I hope my listeners feel the same support.” 


 

Pulling sonic influences from classic Latin American groups and International composers: Los Terricolas, Ennio Morricone, Perez Prado, Agustín Lara, Burt Bacharach, and Giorgio Moroder, Hella Love finds Sylvester fusing classical arrangements with a variety of different genres, evoking a sonic nostalgia. The album was written, performed, and produced by Jess Sylvester with the help of Jason Kick (Mile High Club) at Vintage Synthesizer Museum in Oakland, CA, Lolipop Records in Los Angeles, CA, Jess’s bedroom in San Francisco, CA, and the homes of Bambi and Cole Browning, and Vicco Gonzalez in Portland, OR.
 
Preorders of Hella Love are now available from Hardly Art. LP preorders through Hardly Art and select independent retailers in North Americain the U.K, and in Europe will receive the limited orange pan dulce (colored) vinyl. 


Marinero
Hella Love

Tracklisting:
Fanfare
Through the Fog
Minuet for the Mission
Nuestra Victoria
Luz del Faro
Hella Love
Outerlands
Beyond the Rainbow Tunnel
Hella Love
Maritime
Isle of Alcatraz
Frisco Ball

Hardly Art signs Marinero! Watch his debut video for “Nuestra Victoria” off Hella Love available worldwide on May 21st

TUE, MAR 2, 2021

On May 21st, newly-inked Hardly Art artist Marinero will release Hella Love. Using the moniker Marinero (which means “sailor” in Spanish), Jess Sylvester was drawn to this name as a means to honor his parent’s stories; his father a sailor, and his mother, a Mexican-American who grew up in San Francisco. Hella Love is an album about closing a chapter, with care and presence. It is a love letter to the city that he grew up in before relocating to Los Angeles after finishing Hella Love. This record blends many worlds from beginning to end, and as you go deeper it hits harder. It’s his goodbye to The Bay. 
 
On the new single, “Nuestra Victoria,” Sylvester shares that it is his way of “talking about gentrification in SF, or specifically the Mission where my mom and family grew up. This bakery was called La Victoria and was a place I used to go to and is no longer there”. It was one of the oldest Mexican-American businesses in SF and I wanted to honor it”. The video was directed by Cody Updegrave and captures Sylvester roller skating through the Mission District of SF, where his family grew up. You can watch this video by clicking here.





Pulling sonic influences from classic Latin American groups and International composers: Los Terricolas, Ennio Morricone, Perez Prado, Agustín Lara, Burt Bacharach, and Giorgio Moroder, Hella Love finds Sylvester fusing classical arrangements with a variety of different genres, evoking a sonic nostalgia. The album was written, performed, and produced by Jess Sylvester with the help of Jason Kick (Mile Highclub) at Vintage Synthesizer Museum in Oakland, CA, Lolipop Records in Los Angeles, CA, Jess’s bedroom in San Francisco, CA, and the homes of Bambi and Cole Browning and Vicco Gonzalez in Portland, OR.
 
Preorders of Hella Love are now available from Hardly Art. LP preorders through Hardly Art and select independent retailers in North Americain the U.K, and in Europe will receive the limited Orange pan dulce (colored) vinyl. 


More on Hella Love from Marinero:

Hella Love, the Hardly Art debut from Marinero, is an album about closing a chapter. It’s Jess Sylvester’s grand farewell, and love letter to his hometown and the place he grew up, The San Francisco Bay Area, before relocating to Los Angeles after finishing his debut release. Using the moniker Marinero (which means “sailor” in Spanish), Jess Sylvester was drawn to this name as a means to honor his parent’s stories – his father, a sailor, and mother, a Mexican-American who grew up in San Francisco. This record blends many worlds from beginning to end, and as you go deeper it hits harder. It’s his goodbye to The Bay.

Pulling sonic influences from classic Latin American groups and international composers from the 60’s & 70’s: Los Terricolas, Ennio Morricone, Esquivel, Carole King and, Serge Gainsbourg Hella Love finds Sylvester fusing classical arrangements with a variety of different genres, evoking a sonic nostalgia blended with other contemporary artists like Chicano Batman, Connan Mockasin, and Chris Cohen. The album was written, played, and produced by Jess Sylvester with help from Bay Area engineer Jason Kick (Mild High Club’s Skiptracing) at Tunnel Vision and Santo Recording in Oakland, California. 

On the standout single “Nuestra Victoria,” Sylvester shares “It’s my way of talking about gentrification in SF, or specifically the Mission where my mom and family grew up. The song is about a bakery, or panaderia called La Victoria, and was a place where my mother and tias went growing up, a place I also went to that is no longer there.” It was one of the oldest Mexican-American businesses in SF and I wanted to honor it”. “Through the Fog” highlights Sylvester’s exploration of his influences from the Tropicalia movement, weaving samba rhythms with lush percussion and orchestration. Using SF’s infamous fog as a metaphor for “tough times”, Sylvester expands that it is a dedication to his friends and family who have helped him get through substance abuse issues, heartbreak, and other painful experiences. “There are a few easter eggs in the lyrics for Bay area folks or people who have followed my music in the past but it’s mostly about getting through something difficult with the love and support from the homies and fam.” The album’s self-titled track, “Hella Love” summarizes both of his parent’s stories of how they ended up in the bay. The first verse is about his father’s voyage out west as a sailor during the late ’60s while the second verse follows his mother’s experience moving to The Mission District when she was a young girl.

It’s difficult to classify or generalize about Marinero’s music or identity. To him, it’s important to let his music do the talking. “I’m chicanx, a bay native, biracial, and I’ve luckily gotten to travel and spend time in Mexico and I feel like my personality and specific musical tastes come through on this album. More than these generalizations we often make, I’m just a human who can both fear and love, and I’m just hoping to connect with others to share optimism and experience joy and laughter, even if for just a moment.”  Lean your ear to the ground because Jess Sylvester has been many things and will continue to share his journey. It is clear this gifted creator has more to say.


Marinero
Hella Love

Tracklisting:
Fanfare
Through the Fog
Minuet for the Mission
Nuestra Victoria
Luz del Faro
Hella Love
Outerlands
Beyond the Rainbow Tunnel
Hella Love
Maritime
Isle of Alcatraz
Frisco Ball

Watch Girl Friday’s official video for “Earthquake” from Androgynous Mary, their acclaimed album of 2020, available worldwide from Hardly Art

WED, JAN 27, 2021

Today, Girl Friday has delivered a surrealistic visual for “Earthquake,” the powerhouse lead single from Androgynous Mary, their acclaimed album of 2020 out now on Hardly Art.

Girl Friday’s Vera Ellen, who directed the video, offers this, “The greatest love story is between a song and a video. I wanted to deconstruct the creative process. How do ideas find each other? What happens when the artist lets outside forces get in the way of an idea? How is an idea affected by us, the audience and our expectations? What does an idea have to do to become it’s complete, purest, self. Beyond anything, it’s a story of fighting for true liberation. This will look different for everyone but I hope people can project their own struggle onto the story, and relish in the freedom experienced by the characters (if only for a moment).”




Androgynous Mary is the debut full-length release from Girl Friday. Burning deep in their music is an unquenchable will to survive. The LA-based band don’t blunt the impact of the themes they work through in their ferocious, knotty rock songs, but they don’t let the more harrowing aspects of being alive and young in the 21st century daunt them, either. Taking full advantage of the dystopian shades of post-punk and noise rock palettes on their arresting Androgynous Mary, Girl Friday nevertheless suffuse their music with abundant optimism. The world is a hellscape, but the four of them are in it together.
 
Produced by Norm Block, Androgynous Mary sees Girl Friday negotiate the stress and alienation that comes with being sidelined from normative society with bold, dramatic guitar lines and tightly wound vocal harmonies. Alone, we suffer under the weight of everything designed to keep us down. Together, we stand a fighting chance. Girl Friday place their hope squarely on that chance – on what we can do when we show up for each other, where we can go when we’ve got each other’s backs. You can listen to Androgynous Mary in its full glory here.
 
Girl Friday’s Androgynous Mary is available now everywhere from Hardly Art.


What people are saying about Girl Friday’s
Androgynous Mary:

“Los Angeles four-piece Girl Friday have melded elements from various genres into one cohesive, punk-tinged record that’s straight up excellent.” [4/5] BUST
 
“An excellent, excellent debut.” [8/10] - CLASH
 
“Girl Friday have delivered an exceptionally promising debut with Androgynous Mary. The band’s marriage of indie rock and post punk is perhaps not the most novel, but they deploy it with morbid imagery and personal malcontent that make clear their vision and ethos. The final product, like many fantastic albums, is greater than the sum of its parts. The palpable chemistry between the band members creates an album that both voices shared trauma and responds to it with an invigorating collective spirit.” [8/10] - Under the Radar
 
Androgynous Mary is a scuzzy rock album for exorcising demons—both of the internal and the romantic variety—or for when you’re ready to face how ugly life can be when you look too close. Girl Friday sees through the shit, but they’re not afraid to stomp around in it, either. If this album had siblings, they would be these things: Subway rats that steal greasy pizza boxes, Brian de Palma’s Carrie, and the scrappy fight move where you bite someone on the hand, hard, until they bleed.” [Best of 2020] - Bandcamp
 
This debut’s musical landscape happens to cover an emotional vastness that far surpasses simply anger. There’s heartbreak, melancholy, humor, hopefulness, and even victory—so much more than rage. No matter the emotion, Androgynous Mary finds the band united on the same front, firing on all cylinders through its straightforward punk agenda and nuanced sentimentality.” [83/100] -  Beats Per Minute
 
“Like most bands, Girl Friday has never been crazy about genre labels, and if you asked them whether they were pop or punk or indie, they’d very likely just say yes. By sliding continually between categories, though, this band creates a very absorbing tension between what they are right now and what they might become in a measure or two. You have to pay attention. You can’t take these songs for granted.” - Dusted
 
“Girl Friday doesn’t allow you to consume their music conveniently; you have to recognize the group of people who made it. They speak bluntly, demand respect, equity, and play a ton of enjoyable music.” - EXCLAIM
 
“Their debut full-length album, Androgynous Mary (out now via Hardly Art), shows them making genre-defying music on their own terms.” - Melted Magazine
 
“Girl Friday combine the noodling guitar intricacies of Sleater-Kinney (‘Public Bodies’) with the angsty fury of riot grrl (‘Amber’s Knees’) and distorted DIY of Sonic Youth (‘Earthquake’).” -  NME
 
“Girl Friday are quite clearly on their own path, and all the better for it.” [4/5] MusicOMH
 
“Indie rock gem packed with ferocious feminist energy.” - Nothing But Hope & Passion

WATCH WHITMER THOMAS’ NEW MUSIC VIDEO FOR THE FUTURE HOLIDAY CLASSIC “DANCING WITH MY DAD”

WED, DEC 16, 2020

Just in time for the holidays, musician, comedian, and actor Whitmer Thomas has shared a new music video for his single ”Dancing With My Dad” off of Songs from The Golden One, his acclaimed debut album of 2020.

Whitmer, who also directed the “Dancing With My Dad” video, had this to say, “It’s a holiday song about a movie star saving his dad from feeling lonely at a party. It was inspired by my relationship with my dad and his journey to recovery and redemption. When my parents split I didn’t see my dad for a few years. In those years, I’d latch onto whatever semblance of a dad I could in movies and TV. I wasn’t able to film a proper video for Dancing With My Dad due to the pandemic, so instead, I edited together my ideal day of channel surfing in 1999 when the only consistency in my life was the TV Guide channel.”

Songs from The Golden One features music from Whitmer’s HBO Comedy special “Whitmer Thomas: The Golden One,” which premiered in February 2020. It is available now to stream or download, and the CD and LP are available worldwide through the Hardly Art.

Songs from The Golden One features two exclusive tracks not included in his HBO special (“The Codependent Enabler” and the aforementioned “Dancing With My Dad”) and was recorded in Los Angeles with production by Jona Bechtolt and Rob Kieswetter of electro-pop band YACHT. Whitmer was recently named one of the “Best New Up-and-coming Comedians to Watch” by Vulture and has previously appeared in GLOW, The Good Place, and more.  


What critics are saying about Whitmer Thomas:

“The Year’s Funniest Album [Songs from The Golden One] - The FADER

“The comedian and musician’s breakthrough HBO special is full of songs about familial trauma that work just as well in an album format.” [Songs from The Golden One] - Pitchfork

“Thomas’s music … is good enough to play on its own, and leans more Tears for Fears than Weird Al” [Songs from The Golden One] - PAPER

“Thomas channels all of his feelings through a charming hybrid of highly self-aware comedic storytelling and arch original songs that can only be described as “’darkwave comedy bangers.’” [“…The Golden One”] -  The AV Club

“Thomas presents as a unique talent and storyteller.” [“…The Golden One”] - Uproxx

“The Los Angeles-based comedian, actor and musician Whitmer Thomas keeps audiences guessing with his unusual, deeply personal sets.”[“…The Golden One”] - The New York Times

“The most impressive part of Thomas’s music-comedy fusion is how skilled he is at both.” ”[“…The Golden One”] - The Ringer

2020, We Hardly Knew Ye: Hardly Art in Retrospect

TUE, DEC 15, 2020

2020 was a dumpster fire of a year aside from some kind flames that keep us sane through it all here at Hardly Art.  Wake up to our Twitter and Instagram stories for the rest of 2020 as we reminisce about this past year’s releases. Here’s the full run-down if you want to dig in earlier:

- Lala Lala “Legs, Run” 
- Chastity Belt/Loose Tooth Split SIngle - “The Process” b/w “Lonely”
- Lala Lala & Grapetooth “Fantasy Movie” (co-release w/ Polyvinyl)
- Whitmer Thomas Songs From The Golden One
Whitmer Thomas “Partied to Death” Video
- Whitmer Thomas “Big Baby” 
- Girl Friday “Public Bodies” Video
- Protomartyr “Old Spool and Gurges 1” SIngle Release: “Born To Be Wine” (2016) b/w “French Poet” (2013)
- Girl Friday Androgynous Mary

Hardly Art’s Secular Sales Jamboree 2020: 20% Off Orders Totaling $25, Free Domestic Shipping on Orders Over $50

FRI, NOV 27, 2020


What a year, huh? Let’s end it on a high note! Here at Hardly Art we’re (figuratively) kissing this year goodbye with our 2020 Secular Sales Jamboree! Starting Friday, November 27th through January 3rd we’re offering 20% off of orders totaling $25 or more PLUS free domestic shipping on orders over $50. Whoa!

In desperate need of a laugh? Whitmer Thomas’ Songs from The Golden One will have you splitting at the seams. Looking to rock? Girl Friday’s Androgynous Mary is a force to be reckoned with. Wondering wtf a flexi disc is? Order your copy of Lala Lala and Baths’ € € € €^^%%!!!!!heaven!!!!!! to see for yourself. And, of course, we have an assortment of apparel and “other stuff” available for your consideration.

All orders placed by December 13th are guaranteed to ship out before we close up shop for the year, so get your orders in early and often.  Related to this impending warehouse closure, any orders placed between December 14th and January 3rd will not ship out until after we are back in operation on January 4th.

Thank you for your continued support, now get shopping!

With love,
Hardly Art


Girl Friday’s debut album ‘Androgynous Mary’ is out today, August 21st on Hardly Art

FRI, AUG 21, 2020

Credit: Photo Credit: Al Kalyk
Girl Friday’s debut album 'Androgynous Mary' is out today, August 21st on Hardly Art

Listen to Androgynous Mary in all her full glory here: Smarturl.it/girlfriday_AM.

Today marks the debut full-length release of Androgynous Mary from Girl Friday. Burning deep in Girl Friday’s music is an unquenchable will to survive. The LA-based band don’t blunt the impact of the themes they work through in their ferocious, knotty rock songs, but they don’t let the more harrowing aspects of being alive and young in the 21st century daunt them, either. Taking full advantage of the dystopian shades of post-punk and noise rock palettes on their arresting debut LP, Androgynous Mary, Girl Friday nevertheless suffuse their music with abundant optimism. The world is a hellscape, but the four of them are in it together.

Produced by Norm Block, Androgynous Mary sees Girl Friday negotiate the stress and alienation that comes with being sidelined from normative society with bold, dramatic guitar lines and tightly wound vocal harmonies. Alone, we suffer under the weight of everything designed to keep us down. Together, we stand a fighting chance. Girl Friday place their hope squarely on that chance – on what we can do when we show up for each other, where we can go when we’ve got each other’s backs. 


Limited orders for Androgynous Mary on translucent purple vinyl are still available. In the UK, exclusive LP versions of the record will be available on pink marbled vinyl with an obi strip and autographed photos of the band at select retailers via Dink’d. 


[Photo Credit: Al Kalyk]

What people are saying about Girl Friday:

“Los Angeles four-piece Girl Friday have melded elements from various genres into one cohesive, punk-tinged record that’s straight up excellent.” [Album Review] - BUST 

“With a fun punk beat, angsty shouted lyrics, and energetic guitar riffs that evoke a feeling of mischief, the single is intended to sound like “an explosion of energy” - [Earthquake] Under the Radar

Girl Friday boast sweet harmonies and tight rhythms…“ - [“This Is Not The Indie Rock I Signed Up For.”] Alternative Press

Girl Friday Share ferocious new single “Earthquake” - Debut album ‘Androgynous Mary’ is out August 21st

TUE, AUG 11, 2020

Ahead of the release of their debut full-length Androgynous Mary on, August 21st via Hardly Art, LA band Girl Friday have shared a final pre-release single.
 
Entitled “Earthquake”, the latest track is one of the band’s most gloriously raging moments and sees the group power through three and a half minutes of unadulterated catharsis, chanting the refrain “I just wanna feel like an earthquake / Everything is boring for f*cks sake.” The band comment: “’Earthquake’ is a moment of complete catharsis. From four people who have been repeatedly told to be careful not to hurt themselves, not to disturb the peace, not to get too angry, we deliver this message from our hearts to yours: break anything that’s holding you back. Break free from the chains of patriarchy. Break free from ALL chains and scream.”

Pre-orders for “Androgynous Mary’” on lavender vinyl are available now. In the UK, exclusive LP versions of the record will be available on pink marbled vinyl with an obi strip and autographed photos of the band at select retailers via Dinked.

Burning deep in Girl Friday’s music is an unquenchable will to survive. The LA-based band don’t blunt the impact of the themes they work through in their ferocious, knotty rock songs, but they don’t let the more harrowing aspects of being alive and young in the 21st century daunt them, either. Taking full advantage of the dystopian shades of post-punk and noise rock palettes on their arresting debut LP, ‘Androgynous Mary’, Girl Friday nevertheless suffuse their music with abundant optimism. The world is a hellscape, but the four of them are in it together.


Produced by Norm Block, ‘Androgynous Mary’ sees Girl Friday negotiate the stress and alienation that comes with being sidelined from normative society with bold, dramatic guitar lines and tightly wound vocal harmonies “Does the average man feel like he’s on the outside?” goes the beginning of “Public Bodies,” a wistful jangle-pop gem that shudders open into a snarling punk coda. Taking cues from longtime boundary-pushers Sonic Youth, Girl Friday depart from traditional song structures, favoring the rush of jarring turns over the safety of well-defined pop taxonomy. Looking to queer provocateurs like Placebo, they cherish the frisson of incongruous musical elements soldered together: “really dark, heavy things mashed up with quite beautiful things, whether that be a distorted guitar line and a sentimental vocal or vice versa,” as Ellen puts it.

That duality dovetails with the thematic friction running through the album, the alternating despair and hope that intertwine in the fight to stay alive as any kind of unfairly disenfranchised person in the US. Written during a year of personal struggle for all four band members, ‘Androgynous Mary’ reflects the solace they took in each other – as a band, but also as a micro-community and a chosen family. “It feels so rejuvenating to be there for each other and protect each other,” says Hsieh. Ellen adds, “We’ve definitely been through a lot together, but we’ve come through it by sticking together and loving each other regardless.”

Alone, we suffer under the weight of everything designed to keep us down. Together, we stand a fighting chance. Girl Friday place their hope squarely on that chance – on what we can do when we show up for each other, where we can go when we’ve got each other’s backs.


‘Androgynous Mary’ will be released on August 21st via Hardly Art. Pre-order: smarturl.it/GirlFriday_AM 


Lala Lala and Baths Release New Collaborative Single “€ € € €^^%%!!!!!heaven!!!!!!”

FRI, JUL 24, 2020

Today, Hardly Art’s Lala Lala and Basement’s Basement’s Baths have released “€ € € €^^%%!!!!!heaven!!!!!!”, a new single they co-wrote and produced. It is available now worldwide on all major streaming platforms, and as a limited edition clear flexi disc on Hardylart.com, Bandcamp, and Lala Lala and Baths’ webstores. Proceeds from their first month of sales will be donated to charity–see below for more specifics.

In a joint statement, Lala Lala’s Lillie West and Baths’ Will Wiesenfeld say, “This song was born of a mutual fandom between both artists. Ideas and responsibilities were evenly split as the production came together.”

“Lillie’s music is great and working together was an instant yes! The process was the most fun I’ve ever had collaborating even though we worked remotely,” added Wiesenfeld. 

Lillie writes, “I am obsessed with Will both professionally and personally. Collaborating was an extreme pleasure.”

100% of artists’ and labels’ share over the first month of sales will be donated between two organizations; Black Aids Institute, “the only premier uniquely and unapologetic-ally Black think and do tank in America powered by two decades of work to end the Black HIV epidemic and led by people who represent the issues we serve,” and Restore Justice Illinois,which  “advocates for fairness, humanity, and compassion throughout the Illinois criminal justice system, with a primary focus on those affected by extreme sentences imposed on our youth.” 

“€ € € €^^%%!!!!!heaven!!!!!!” follows Lala Lala’s 2020 releases “Legs, Run,” “Fantasy Movie” (with Grapetooth), and “Good for You,” a guest appearance on a new song from Porridge Radio. Baths recently released the full length Pop Music / False B-Sides II.  The cover image is by artist Caroline David.

Girl Friday Share Music Video For Latest Single, “Public Bodies”

WED, JUL 22, 2020

LA band Girl Friday’s debut full-length Androgynous Mary will  be out worldwide on LP, CD, digital, and cassette on Friday, August 21st.  Today, they’ve debuted a new music video for their third pre-release single, ”Public Bodies,” from director Gussie Larkin.  Girl Friday have offered the following statement about the song:

“The song reflects an unquenching will to survive. The correlation between caring for our plants and caring for our body/soul is close. We water them, change their soil, put on Plantasia for them, and give them a little nutrients. But sometimes we water them too much. Or we ignore them for weeks. Sometimes we become the thing that destroys us. We are made aware of all the ways in which we are the one causing our own roots to spoil, that we are our own oppressor. We’re made aware that the thing we are supposed to trust deeply has betrayed us. 

In a greater context, it is reflective of the systems that we uphold by being blind to them. In being blind or complacent, we unknowingly ourselves cause harm both invisibly and externally. We have to have an unmistakable commitment to caring for the health of our souls and the souls of others. Sometimes you just gotta get a can of weed-killer to your own face and call it a day!”

Of the video, Larkin says, “All around the world, indoor plants are getting more care and attention than ever before - and for some they might be their only companions in this time. Unfortunately for Girl Friday singer/guitarist Vera, I gave her plant dark intentions and an unflinching desire to ROCK. I wanted to bring some lightness to the song which has themes of isolation, illness and longing. The challenge of including all four band members (who are each in different places all over the world) turned out to fit the concept really well, and in a way they’re united through their interactions with the plants. Director of photography Ezra Simons and I made the video entirely in our small studio above a record store in Auckland. This was our first time working with stop motion animation, and it involved a lot of experimentation, astroturf and plenty of green paint. I was lucky to have Annabel Kean and Callum Devlin (Sports Team) on board, who have made some great videos for The Beths among many others.”

Pre-orders for Androgynous Mary on translucent purple vinyl are available now. In the UK, exclusive LP versions of the record will be available on pink marbled vinyl with an obi strip and autographed photos of the band at select retailers via Dink’d.