Local Current Blog

Tickle Torture, Maria Isa, Suzie, and more Minnesota record releases this week

Tickle Torture: Spectrophilia

Your new favorite dance-pop pants-dropper, Elliott Kozel a.k.a. Tickle Torture, is at it again. Spectrophilia is being released online today. Standout track “She’s In My Blood” has the heavy groove you would expect, but sprinkles in psychedelic oddities for good measure. The 8.5-minute track builds to some intense screaming above the incessant guitar work only to pause for a repulsive puking sample. Kozel seems to like this repulsiveness, and it’s working. “Would I Love You” was also recently the Current’s Song of the Day. Kozel brought his crazy stagecraft to Tickle Torture’s release show at the 7th St. Entry last Saturday.

Maria Isa: Valley of the Dolls

Maria Isa returns with Valley of the Dolls—an album fusing elements of pop, Latin, and hip-hop—today. Single “Sabotage” explores Isa’s more sensitive side, sung by a character who’s longing for a working relationship. The new record will be released on Sotarico Records, the company Isa and her mother started in celebration of their Puerto-Rican/Minnesotan roots.

Suzie: Born Single

Mark Ritsema of Night Moves is releasing his side project album today through No Problem Records. He is known as Suzie and is taking a more reverberant approach to Night Moves twang. On Sept. 20, Suzie will be at Bedlam Lowertown with the irrepressible Tickle Torture as well as Garrison Grouse (Black Diet, What Tyrants).

The Ocean Blue: Waterworks

Today, Pennsylvania transplants the Ocean Blue are expanding their 2004 Waterworks release from an EP to an LP: following up on last year’s Ultramarine—their first full-length in ten years—by adding 3 tracks to the Waterworks EP. One of their new additions to the record is “Can’t Let Go.” David Schelzel’s airy vocals float to the forefront, over a guitar riff echoing the band’s 80s indie roots.

Hammerhead: Global Depression

After a three-year hiatus, local legends Hammerhead are back with a new EP. Global Depression is officially out today on Learning Curve Records. The lyrical themes are as darkly sinister as the EP’s title suggests, and the rumbling soundscape underscores those themes. Hammerhead recently had their release show at the newly renovated Turf Club.

Aaron Bolton is a senior at the University of Minnesota. Currently he writes for growyourflow.com and is the music reporter at Radio K. He hopes to continue a career in music journalism.