“I am embarrassed to be here,” sings Wild Pink singer, guitarist, and songwriter John Ross on “I Used to Be Small.” The “here,” in this case, is the United States.

On the New York-based indie-rock band’s self-titled debut album, Ross explores getting older through the people and places around him. The past is at the forefront, with Ross recalling looking through the window at the Hudson Valley, being told that “if you never stop moving, then you’ll never feel bad” in “Broke on,” a journey through memory. He sings about being a passenger in a parent’s car, riding bikes, “hearing about the war, and knowing it’s not yours.” The listener gets access to moments that shaped whom he became.

When Owen Ashworth dissolved his solo project Casiotone for the Painfully Alone after more than 10 years, he set out to start anew.

“I liked the challenge of starting over and just writing a whole new set of songs and seeing what a blank slate would feel like,” he said in a recent phone interview.

Norwegian garage rockers Death by Unga Bunga, playing at the Village Theatre on February 28, buzzed through the writing, recording, and mastering of Fight! in just six weeks. Released in September, the four-song EP is over in a flash – 12 minutes of ragged indie garage rock infused with power-pop riffs that could have come straight out of a Cheap Trick song.

Sam Vicari isn’t always as direct as the title of his fourth album – Blunt – might imply.

Vicari, who will play a February 17 solo show at Rozz-Tox, kept gravitating toward the theme of aging while writing his 2016 album. But he taps into the emotions and realizations that come with getting older, and they’re often complicated.

“I want to barf on you,” sings Arin Eaton on “Sad,” the most stripped-down song on the 2016 Karen Meat EP She’s Drunk Like the Rest of Us. “I hate what you’ve put me through.”

While vomit is nowhere near unexpected from a Karen Meat & the Computer track (see puking references in songs such as “I Wrote You a Card” and “Pizza & Beer”), Eaton is coming from a more-personal place on this solo EP.

When writing and recording Sleeping Jesus’ debut EP, Perennial, Nick Elstad took the opportunity to explore his life through songwriting like never before.

“I’ve always had this dream of pop music that’s a Trojan horse for radical ideas,” said Keith Brown – songwriter, vocalist, guitarist, bassist, and keyboardist for Trails & Ways – in a recent phone interview.

After making music for the better part of a decade, change was bound to happen for Chicago-based soul band JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound – starting with an alteration to its name.

John Darnielle specializes in bringing the humanity out of unexpected places, from professional wrestling to nearby Midwestern towns.

During the process of writing and recording their 2015 album Dealer, two members of Foxing shared experiences that would shape the direction of the music.

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