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Tender Fits

by Lightleak

  • Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Limited edition 160-gram 12" LP on "natural" clear white vinyl. Pressed in Chicago at Smashed Plastic. Comes with a 10-page zine which includes lyrics + a self-to-self interview + original collages by Dustin Currier and photography by DC and Emily Dupree. This item will ship early 2022.

    Includes unlimited streaming of Tender Fits via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    ships out within 3 days
    edition of 200 
    Purchasable with gift card

      $15 USD or more 


  • Streaming + Download

    Includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.
    Purchasable with gift card

      $7 USD  or more


B.I.D.S.I.U. 03:57
The red light’s divine, the red light defines you Traffic in lost time, the all-seeing eye reminds you The ID assigned obscures the light inside you Chroma shy to shine—cut the cards, run the light and find you Burn it down, smash it up Dreaming of radical love Started with a statue—now do the system The brass in the back room are shaking hips to the cataclysm Started in the classroom, punks laughing too loud to listen Their mirror never matched you—taxed to free yourself from the fiction Oh, to be an extra in your own picture Oh, another lecture Shine a light, define, refine
“We all know that adderall makes you talk your head right off, and as the night gets on we all get tired of nodding right along. Left to your devices, you divide up your selves, loathing the alone time of a life upon a shelf. “Did you really quit smoking again? What’s next, drinking? Everyone’s a bore by forty, you’re thirty-one years young. Left with no excuses, so you excused yourself. History repeats until you nurse it back to health” Out of sight, out of my mind I alight, I lie in light “Sure, you never asked for my advice—here’s my two cents: get your shit together, reckless never pays the rent. Left with due decisions, so you can suit yourself. Indulge in your compulsions or commit to be compelled.”
Mmm Hmm Om 02:23
I didn’t see you coming through my grayscale hell & honey, but these Capra-colored lenses have me tasting 20/20 Your hands on my guitar nimbly danced on my black heart; as I process this procession, I’ll try to play my part You’re speaking my language to me “This isn’t normal, is it?” “No,” you said, “it’s really not”, and we intertwined our digits, investigating what we’ve got You spun The Order of Time, and the stars got re-aligned; it was a breathless intercession, a high tide for a tired mind Is anything really so strange? When all we touch we name
No Icon 03:37
All of your heroes are assholes now They’re deadbeats and sellouts anyhow Let go the tether, stake your claim Go brave the weather and make your name Is it so hard to do no harm? Is it so hard? I don’t know Today’s flames and darlings and deathless stars outed tomorrow for their fouls in the dark It’s just paper crowns on golden calves We don’t deign to take a dirty hand No one needs and icon to justly be Level-headed hearts and hands kept clean It’s no time for icons No time now
Pardoners 04:14
A warm day in May of ‘99 my mother bought me my first suit at a discount store They sat me next to a friend of mine We laughed upon the poplar pew ‘til our guts were sore or until I caught my mother’s eye It was fixed upon the pinewood casket her dad, the baneful drunk No one could figure why but she forgave him when he asked it He died with daughter’s love There’s no rest for the wicked or the regulars The best gift that he was given was a pardoner We drink to forgiveness and dream of forgetting and sipping, I the witness find humors in bloodletting A warm day in May, 2013 my wife, she bought me a new shirt at a smart boutique The priest spoke just like an auctioneer as granddad’s ashes hung above the dirt The wind wore all his sheets It’s just another Bacchanalian wake, a parade pedestrian sons in tow The bastard left again I didn’t know what my old man would say when he eulogized that late lush, oh but he absolved the man
Every family has its secrets, little myths inherited We’re tangled messes on a grapevine, huddled close to keep ‘em in You are the spit You are the image Blood pulses in sympathetic vibration Were you burdened by a bloodline? Are your conclusions all foregone? Are you mired in expectation? And will you sing a different song?
I was reared to wield a rifle at first loaded with caps Hands fated to cradle power, head fit for a cowboy hat Her mother made her trade blue jeans for a pretty little dress of pink Tommy’s little tomboy can’t believe what she’s being brought to think The boys cannot be boys The boys must not be boys Now, I have watched a million movies I’ve read a bunch of books based on blancos just like me who ruled the worlds they took Born to another universe, her options are dame or damsel They say I earn what I deserve and boys deprived are Roman candles
Scared So 01:33
Salty Tongue 03:49
We walk around in tandem parallel universes Love in fear, feeling batshit Salty tongue, satisfaction I am your companion and you will never be certain if I’m coming back Oh please, please sleep next to me so I can feel your heat Sweet grief, just lie here in peace Your racing blood beats me I’m sound and sight—music and beauty You’re smell and taste—piss and red meat So speak your mind, I will listen but won’t understand unless it’s written You are my companion and I will never be certain if your love is real
Try and think of two words The first word is for each inhalation, the second is for every exhalation Something you might say: “cedar and cerulean”


(link above)

Picking up where he left off with 2020’s buoyant Lower Powers EP (Landland Colportage) under the D.H. Currier moniker, Chicago indie whiz Dustin Currier makes use of a signature sonic palette to expand that genre-agnostic pomp and circumstance (and personnel) on the debut Lightleak LP, Tender Fits. In between facilitating remote music classes as a public school teacher and working on his other projects Ands and Cut Teeth, Currier utilized time in quarantine to self-produce this remarkable collection—arranging an exuberant brass section atop a bed of wiry, interlocking guitars, dizzying keyboards, and a nimble rhythm section. But according to Currier, “bringing other people in was paramount to making something that is three-dimensional and really worth listening to,” so he enlisted the art-punk audio ace Chad Clark (Beauty Pill, Dismemberment Plan) to mix the album; Sadie Dupuis (Speedy Ortiz, Sad13), Vivian McConnell (V.V. Lightbody), and Krystal Rosenbrock on additional vocals; Seth Engel (Options) on drums; Ben Grigg (Geronimo!) on trumpet; and Logan Bloom on trombone.

Across Tender Fits’ eleven tracks, Currier & Co. demonstrate a Goldilocksian knack for mining seemingly disparate aural elements to craft something anomalous and somehow just-right. On a song like the cleverly playful “Asking For a Friend”, densely orchestrated grooves pair soul-tinged horns with dissonant, call-and-reponse guitars that build up to a spacious, euphoric chorus where Currier seems to find stasis in quarter-life crisis as he bellows, “Out of sight, out of my mind / I alight, I lie in light”. Whether confronting patriarchy ("No Icon", "(Boys) Must Not Be"), crooning an offbeat ode to a beloved dog ("Salty Tongue"), or processing collective generational grief ("Pardoners", "Sympathetic Vibration"), the songs on Tender Fits emanate from a core of pursuing radical love in its many forms.

Lightleak’s triumphant debut is sure to resonate with fans of forward-thinking indie and punk-adjacent acts as much as connoisseurs of classic songwriting and other genre-bending pioneers. From the album’s opening moments, the band welcomes the listener into its own little singular world via intermittent laughter-laden practice clips, stick clicks, and field recordings. While Currier’s fervent yet frank vocals provide an anchor to Tender Fits’ sonic explorations, the well-placed pair of instrumental tracks “Mmm Hmm Om” and “Scared So” showcase a rare knack for composition and arrangement that goes beyond your typical indie rock intermission. What is clear upon even a first listen is that every note and musical choice throughout this album was made with great care and intention.

Tender Fits will be the inaugural release for Currier’s new record label, Model Love Songs. In addition to a full digital release, the limited edition 160-gram LP contains a 10-page DIY “zine” insert featuring original artwork and photography by Currier and Emily Dupree. Lightleak looks forward to performing this music—both solo and as a full band—everywhere from select local shows to international tours when possible in support of the record.


released November 12, 2021

Mixing & treatments: Chad Clark
Mastering: Greg Obis @ Chicago Mastering Service
Engineering: Seth Engel & Russell Harrison @ Pallet Sound; DHC @
Superior Street & Rice Street; Sadie Dupuis, Vivian McConnell, Krystal
Rosenbrock & Ben Grigg @ respective home studios
Photography: Cover photo, zine cover photo by Emily Dupree; other photos by ED & DHC
Art: Collages by DHC; layout by DHC & Bob Adams

2021, Model Love Songs


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