May Recap // New Releases and a Healthy Handful of Summer Tours

We recently announced two incredibly unique records, both of which will be out in the first week of June. Learn a little more about the records below and make sure to pre-save and pre-order if you like what you hear!

As well, a healthy handful of Topshelf artists will be on tour this summer. From Ratboys to the legendary toe, there will be loads of shows you won't want to sleep on! Check out dates and other info below.

Alfred. photo by Ethan Hickerson / LITE photo by Riki Yamada

Recently announced albums

Alfred. - LIKE YOU!!

release: June 7, 2019

LIKE YOU!! is the deeply multifaceted debut album by Richmond, VA's Alfred. Its warbly bell tones, expertly chopped melodic samples, and slow-mo hip-hop grooves form the instrumental base for the "darkgospel" singer/rapper Aaron Brown. Jazzy yet supple Dilla-reminiscent cuts contrast starkly with songs that boast Alfred.'s signature darkgospel stylings, the juxtaposition of which makes for a compelling, spectrum-crossing album.

listen to the whole album ahead of its official release

watch the double video for "Tales of a Queer Rapscallion" and "Like You! (Yes, You)"

learn more about Alfred.

pre-order LIKE YOU!!

LITE - Multiple

release: June 5, 2019

Multiple is the sixth full length record by the prolific maximalists known as LITE. Over the past 16 years, the Japanese quartet has established itself as one of the most influential groups across a host of subgenres. Though usually referred to by touchstones such as "math-rock" or "post-rock," LITE has developed an uncanny ability to fuse their influences into their own unmistakable dialect that defies generic genre classification.

listen to the latest single, "Double"

listen to the lead single, "Temple"

learn more about LITE

pre-order Multiple

Tours

Don't you love when tons of great gigs underscore the vibrance of summer? Check out our tour playlist to get a sampling of the Topshelf artists and their tourmates who are currently on the road, and read on for the full scoop on all the tours going down.

listen on spotify

listen on apple music

toe just announced two US shows in August

toe tour info

No Vacation began their full US tour this week, and will fly out to Europe for an extended tour in July

No Vacation tour info

Bellows will be on tour with Gabby's World in July, with a slew of west coast dates

Bellows tour info

Alfred. will be doing a short run of shows in July

Alfred. tour info

Queen of Jeans will hit the road with The Menzingers and The Sidekicks in July

Queen of Jeans tour info

Ratboys will begin the second leg of their tour with PUP in June

Ratboys tour info

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Ratboys // Music Video for "Figure"

This new video for "Figure" by Ratboys features a claymation project that took artist Bayley White 6 months to complete and tells a story of Julia, the band's lead singer, embarking on an array of exciting adventures. The video premiered on NPR Music, who chatted with the band on all the details what went into the song and video.


"Figure" is off of Ratboys' recent EP, GL, which you can purchase here.

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Ratboys // European Tour Dates

This May, our dear Ratboys are joining up with Wild Pink for a co-headlining tour of Europe!

  • 5/3 - Vienna, AT @ Venster
  • 5/4 - Zagreb, HR @ Močvara
  • 5/5 - Verona, IT @ REDZONE
  • 5/6 - Perugia, IT @ Chupito
  • 5/9 - Lucerne, SWI @ Sedel
  • 5/10 - Freiburg, GER @ Slow Club
  • 5/11- Darmstadt, GER @ Oettinger Villa
  • 5/12 - Münster, GER @ Gleis22
  • 5/13 – Brighton, UK - The Hope and Ruin
  • 5/14 - Bristol, UK @ The Exchange
  • 5/16 - Glasgow, UK @ Broadcast
  • 5/17 - Nottingham, UK @ JT Soar
  • 5/18 - Manchester, UK @ The Whiskey Jar
  • 5/19 - London, UK @ The Lexington
  • 5/23 - Gothenburg, SWE @ Sekten
  • 5/24 - Oslo, NO @ Venue TBA
  • 5/25 - Stockholm, SWE @ Lava

Make sure to catch these shows to hear songs from their new EP GL!

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Ratboys // New EP 'GL'

Surprise! We are so excited to finally announce Ratboys' new EP GL. Available both in our store and on Bandcamp, this digital release is comprised of four new songs that Ratboys recorded around the same time they made their 2017 full-length GN. According to the band, "these songs sort of stood out as misfits throughout the writing and recording process," but are united by certain themes, such as "loss and loneliness and self-deprecation." Stream all four tracks and read more of what the band had to say about GL here.

"Not content with releasing one of 2017’s best records, Ratboys are bestowing more scuzzy loveliness upon the world with the surprise-release of a brand new EP. Offering four new tracks, ‘GL‘ is as formidable as we’ve come to expect from the pair, melding bright, buzzy moments of escape with a gnarly edge that always finding a way of slicing through and shaping the whole thing." - Gold Flake Paint

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End of Year Sale!

What a year it's been for us all! With releases from Heat, mouse on the keys, Slingshot Dakota, Del Paxton, tricot, Ratboys, Us and Us Only, Colossal, People Like You, Queen Moo, Prawn, Wild Ones, Gingerlys, No Vacation, and one surprise record coming out this Friday, we couldn't be more proud to be a label that represents such talented artists. Through the remainder of the year, all 2017 releases will be 17% off on both US and UK stores.

Want a general recap of what we've put out this year + cassette series + some sneaky hints? Check out these Bandcamp / Apple Music / Spotify playlists we made.

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#del paxton
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#heat
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#no vacation
#prawn
#queen moo
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#tricot
#us and us only
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Ratboys // "GM" Music Video

Get a glimpse of what it's like to hang out with Chicago-based band, Ratboys, in their new "GM" music video. They recap their tour adventures and personal stories in this folksy, sweetly-sung track – shot entirely on a Go-Pro, the band makes it easy for fans to go behind the scenes and get a feel for life on the road.

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Ratboys // Tour Dates with DAGS!

Ratboys are always on tour, and even more so since they've released their second full length, GN. The Chicago-based band will making their way down south this October with DAGS! from Milan, Italy. Tickets go on sale on Friday, August 4th - don't miss seeing them in your city!

  • 10/21 Lexington, KY @ The Burl
  • 10/22 Louisville, KY @ Zanzabar
  • 10/24 Athens, GA @ Caledonia Lounge
  • 10/25 Birmingham, AL @ Syndicate Lounge
  • 10/26 Tallahassee, FL @ Club Downunder
  • 10/28 Greenville, SC @ the Radio Room
  • 10/29 Knoxville, TN @ Open Chord

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Ratboys // "GN" Now Steaming

GN, the long-awaited sophomore album from Ratboys, is now streaming in its entirety for you to listen to to your heart’s desire. Julie Steiner and Dave Sagan draw influence from the likes of Sheryl Crow, Jenny Lewis, and Kim Deal in their marriage of emo and country counterparts, upholding their melodic, intimate sound. Stereogum acclaims the band's writing on the record for its ability to "blur the line between the personal and the conceptual." GN offers a compilation of storytelling in its personal accounts of sorrow, elation, and learning experiences. The duo will kick off their tour with Mother Evergreen, All Get Out, and Diet Cig starting June 30th at their record release show at Schubas in Chicago, IL.

GN will be available this Friday, June 30th, on CD, vinyl, cassette, and digitally.

Dates and info below.

  • 06.30.17 - Chicago, IL @ Schuba's (Record Release Show) *
  • 07.01.17 - Davenport, IA @ Raccoon Motel *
  • 07.02.17 - Champaign, IL @ Memphis on Main *
  • 07.03.17 - Bowling Green, KY @ Sinkhole Sanctuary *
  • 07.05.17 - Detroit, MI @ Pike Room at the Crofoot
  • 07.06.17 - Toronto, ON @ DBeatstro
  • 07.07.17 - Ottawa, ON @ Montgomery Legion Hall
  • 07.08.17 - Burlington, VT @ SideBar
  • 07.09.17 - Montreal, QC @ L'Escogriffe
  • 07.11.17 - Manchester, NH @ Penuche's Music Hall
  • 07.12.17 - Portland, ME @ SPACE Gallery
  • 07.13.17 - Albany, NY @ The Rice House
  • 07.14.17 - Rochester, NY @ Bug Jar
  • 07.15.17 - Bethlehem, PA @ The Blast Furnace Room at ArtsQuest
  • 07.21.17 - Des Moines, IA @ Vaudeville Mews
  • 07.22.17 - Omaha, NE @ Milk Run
  • 07.23.17 - St. Louis, MO @ Blueberry Hill Duck Room
  • 08.01.17 - Kansas City, MO @ The recordBar (w/ Slothrust)
  • 08.02.17 - St. Paul, MN @ Turf Club (w/ Ron Gallo, Slothrust)
  • 08.19.17 - Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Tavern
  • 08.20.17 - Boston, MA @ Middle East Upstairs ^
  • 08.22.17 - Philadelphia, PA @ Kung Fu Necktie ^
  • 08.23.17 - Brooklyn, NY @ Knitting Factory ^
  • 08.24.17 - Washington, DC @ DC9 ^
  • 08.25.17 - Carrboro, NC @ Cat’s Cradle Back Room ^
  • 08.26.17 - Atlanta, GA @ Vinyl ^
  • 08.27.17 - Nashville, TN @ The End
  • 09.07.17 - Hamden, CT @ The Ballroom at The Outer Space #
  • 09.09.17 - Providence, RI @ Columbus Theatre #
  • 09.11.17 - Northampton, MA @ Iron Horse Music Hall #
  • 09.12.17 - Ithaca, NY @ The Haunt #
  • 09.13.17 - Pittsburgh, PA @ The Funhouse at Mr Smalls #
  • 09.15.17 - Bethlehem, PA @ Lehigh University
  • 09.16.17 - Lancaster, PA @ Lizard Lounge #
  • 09.17.17 - Baltimore, MD @ Metro Gallery #
  • 10.27.17 - Gainesville, FL @ FEST

* = w/ Mother Evergreen
^ = w/ All Get Out
# = w/ Diet Cig

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Ratboys // "Westside" Song Premiere

Today, Ratboys' single “Westside” is streaming on The Line of Best Fit, who relate the post-country single’s prominent sun-soaked guitar chords to “a blinding sunset to cap off the musical equivalent of a hazy August afternoon.”

The track from “GN” follows up the Chicago outfit’s “AOID” with a sort of nostalgic emotional hide-and-seek delivered softly by Julia Steiner’s vocals, with lyrics like 'I fall asleep to the memories / Of my dreams," which push through Dave Sagan's swirling guitar crescendos. The track leaves its listeners in a dreamy country-inspired haze reminiscent of past summers. “Westside” reveals Ratboys’ ability to mix their own form of indie rock with undertones of other genres.

Pre-order their upcoming album, “GN."

Tour Dates:

  • 5/26 Chicago, IL - Schuba's~
  • 5/27 Howell, MI - BLED Fest
  • 5/28 Cleveland, OH - Mahall's~
  • 5/30 Boston, MA - Middle East Upstairs~
  • 5/31 Brooklyn, NY - Baby's Alright~
  • 6/1 Philadelphia, PA - Boot & Saddle~
  • 6/2 Pittsburgh, PA - Ba Sing Se
  • 6/3 South Bend, IN - Riverlights Music Festival

~supporting Pet Symmetry

  • 6/5 Chicago, IL - The Gym (stripped down set)
  • 6/30 Chicago, IL - Schuba's*
  • 7/1 Davenport, IA - The Raccoon Motel*
  • 7/2 Champaign, IL - Memphis on Main*
  • 7/3 Bowling Green, KY - Sinkhole Sanctuary*
  • 7/5 Pontiac, MI - The Pike Room
  • 7/6 Toronto, ON - D-Beatstro
  • 7/7 Ottawa - ON - TBA
  • 7/8 Burlington, VT - TBA
  • 7/9 Montreal, QC - L'Escogriffe
  • 7/11 Manchester, NH - Penuches Music Hall
  • 7/12 Portland, ME - Space Gallery
  • 7/13 Albany, NY - Relief Theater
  • 7/14 Rochester, NY - Bug Jar
  • 7/15 Bethlehem, PA - Blast Furnace Room
  • *w/ Mother Evergreen
  • 7/21 Des Moines, IA - Vaudeville Mews
  • 7/22 Omaha, NE - Milk Run
  • 7/24 Laramie, WY - Babe Haus
  • 7/29 Chicago, IL - Wicker Park Fest
  • 8/18 Chicago, IL - Subterranean (upstairs)

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Ratboys // New Single and Video Premiere Via NPR

NPR Music premiered Ratboys' new single, Elvis Is in the Freezer, which they call "just the sweetest story about a dead cat."

It's true, the music video tells the tale (tail?) of two friends and the death of a beloved cat — and it's all in reverse.

"The band's sophomore album GN (short for 'good night') is a significant step-up both in production and songwriting from AOID, something that could've been made in East Nashville, but was recorded right in their Chicago hometown." - NPR Music

We've had it stuck in our heads all day. GN is out on June 30, and it's available for pre-order meow!!!


Tour Dates

05.26.17 - Chicago, IL @ Schubas %

05.27.17 - Howell, MI @ Bled Fest %

05.28.17 - Cleveland, OH @ Mahall’s %

05.30.17 - Boston, MA @ Middle East %

05.31.17 - Brooklyn, NY @ Baby’s All Right %

06.01.17 - Philadelphia, PA @ Boot & Saddle %

06.30.17 - Chicago, IL @ Schubas *

07.01.17 - Davenport, IA @ Raccoon Motel *

07.02.17 - Champaign, IL @ Memphis on Main *

07.03.17 - Bowling Green, KY @ Sinkhole Sanctuary *

07.05.17 - Pontiac, MI @ The Pike Room

07.06.17 - Toronto, ON @ D'Beatstro

07.09.17 - Montreal, QC @ L'Escogriffe

07.11.17 - Manchester, NH @ Penuches Music Hall

07.12.17 - Portland, ME @ Space Gallery

07.13.17 - Albany, NY @ Relief Theater

07.14.17 - Rochester, NY @ Bug Jar

07.15.17 - Bethlehem, PA @ Blast Furnace Room

07.21.17 - Des Moines, IA @ Vaudeville Mews

07.22.17 - Omaha, NE @ Milk Run

07.24.17 - Laramie, WY @ Babe Haus

07.25.17 - Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court #

07.27.17 - Denver, CO @ Bluebird #

07.30.17 - Cleveland, OH @ Mahall's #

% = w/ Pet Symmetry

* = w/ Mother Evergreen

# = w/ PWR BTTM

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