A Deeper Dive Into “-ing”-core

Identifying, dissociating, and defining 30 more artists who’ve embraced the gerund.
A Deeper Dive Into “-ing”-core

Identifying, dissociating, and defining 30 more artists who’ve embraced the gerund.

Words: Mike LeSuer

April 19, 2021

A few years ago I suffered the public shame of confessing to never having listened to clipping., Moaning, Crying, and a number of other prominent artists with one-word, active-verb names, and the even greater public shame of being reminded what a gerund is by about half of them on social media. After familiarizing myself with most of these artists (and refamiliarizing myself with a sixth grade language arts curriculum) and publishing an earnest notes app apology, I don’t think I’ll ever confuse the Afrofuturist pop of SPELLLING with emo heavyweights Snowing or Dowsing (though I’m sure I’ll continue to confuse those two, much to the chagrin of a very specific type of guy)—sometimes it’s best to open up about your ignorance and allow others to lambast you for your opinion that, say, Foxing sounds like M83 based on listening to a single song. (I absolutely still stand by my opinion that Running is the #1 gerund band—R.I.P. Alejandro.)

The problem is that my work is far from done. I noticed shortly after publishing the piece that I kept stumbling upon these “-ing” artists beyond the 15 I listed, which not only made me think I published the piece too soon, but also that my attachment to this very specific project will never be done. I don’t know how many of these artist names are copycat crimes or if they were floating around undetected while I penned a quick list of 15 items in order to wash my hands of this subject, but you can read on for an exhaustive—yet by no means complete—list of artists who are perpetually [reading from Google] deriving from a verb yet functioning as a noun. Some names I jotted down after discovering their music via press releases and recommendations, though let it be known that you can Google just about any gerund plus “Bandcamp” and you’ll find a cool new obsession.

For the record, I dropped a couple of the names I’d come across (such as the defunct Finnish doom metal band Yearning) to condense the piece (and also because their lack of Bandcamp presence would’ve ruined the flow of the article). Also, weirdly, I found two Scandinavian groups called “Ingenting” (one stylized as “[ingenting],” though they seem to have pivoted to selling wine), which I removed when I realized it was merely the Swedish word for “nothing” (that said, “nothing” is not a gerund. Sorry, Nothing.)

Also, please note that these names are listed alphabetically—we didn’t want another internal rift at Sub Pop HQ.

Blessing (blackened hardcore from London, Ontario)

Probably would’ve been terrified of this my first time ranking the -ings, but spending time with doom-y powerviolence stuff made it much more palatable. [Peeks head out from behind a protective shield] Can I call this…grindcore?

Blushing (dream pop from Austin, TX)

The kind of band that’ll make your editor tell you to stop using the world “ethereal.” Confusingly, sounds a bit like Kindling.

Bobbing (electropop from Berkeley, CA)

Very funky, very vibey. Probably the only artist on this list named after a band member.

Coasting (formerly surf rock from Brooklyn, NY; presently emo-punk from Madison, WI)

Might be tough to track down their music, but a decade ago Coasting was on the same lo-fi circuit as Reading Rainbow and Dum Dum Girls (they shared a drummer with Vivian Girls)—since then seems like a Midwest pop-punk quartet’s taken over the moniker (they even sing about “coasting” on their track “Boofing”). 

Convulsing (death metal from Adelaide, Australia)

I mean, yeah, they’re called “Convulsing,” I think you get the picture. Growly, anti-fascist death metal solo appendage to the dark instrumental post-rock group Dumbsaint. Surely music to convulse to.

Coping (emo from Chicago, IL)

Ah shit, another group I’m about to get mixed up with Snowing and Dowsing. Sorry, specific type of guy.

Courting (post-punk from Liverpool, UK)

Cheeky, talky, upbeat Brits with songs about not wanting to get on David Byrne’s bad side. Self-proclaimed Take That cover band. Puts Shame to shame.

Crowning (emoviolence from Chicago, IL)

One of a thousand noteworthy screamo bands putting out music on British Columbia’s Zegema Beach Records at the moment. I’m trying to see how long I can go without Googling “skramz” but it seems to be getting harder every day.

delving (ambient prog from Berlin, Germany)

Kraut-y side project of Elder’s Nick DiSalvo, which he was able to delve (ahaha) into due to time afforded him by the pandemic.

Fawning (dream pop from the Bay Area, CA)

Gothy, Cocteau Twins–y offshoot of Night School draped in just enough spooky sheen to earn a spot within the Graveface discography, if not a spot on the Roadhouse stage.

Fearing (coldwave band from CA)

Most reverent modern homage to The Cure outside of the Felte or Dais discographies.

Freaking (psych-pop from Boston, MA)

I think “art pop” is actually the blanket term for anything lo-fi and slightly left-of-center like this. Like Deerhoof and Empath, only not at all so.

Ghosting (pop-punk from CA)

Punk with alto sax and trumpet that never seems to border on ska (not that there would be anything wrong with that) from some folks who sound like they’ve been ghosted one too many times.

Glassing (blackened shoegaze from Austin, TX)

I promised not to rank these artists, but if I did I think Glassing would be the superior -ing band among this batch of artists. An innovative foil to fellow gnarly Austinites Portrayal of Guilt.

Gnawing (alt-country punk from Richmond, VA)

Punk band that insists they’re a little bit country, never seem to acknowledge that they’re also a little bit Dino Jr.

Growing (drone from New York, NY)

Ah, finally, something fully removed from literally every other artist on this list. Just listen to their new 20-minute single to hear for yourself.

Lacing (dream pop from Chattanooga, TN)

Extremely dreamy punk—sounds like Nothing (again, not a gerund band, but sure looks like one) with all the nihilistic energy sucked out of it.

Lettering (pop-punk from Chicago, IL)

College house show–core…can’t remember which wave of emo that pertains to.

Loving (soft rock from ???)

The type of anxiety-less acoustic rock that permeates the post-Dylan ’60s and also Southern California. Gonna go ahead and say this band is from Southern California. 

Panxing (minimal techno from Copenhagen, Denmark)

Pretty formless electronic stuff mixed with piano. You may play this at your Halloween party.

Seeming (dark electronica from Ithaca, NY)

In turns minimalist and operatic, rock, and electronic; rarely not overtly goth.

Shining (depressive black metal from Halmstad, Sweden)

Pretty polarizing ABM project due to its pro-suicide lyrics and its frontman’s “triggered??” public persona. Also, the music? Not great.  

S H R I E K I N G (black metal from San Diego, CA)

Slightly sludgy, plenty doomy, and, weirdly, wholly extraterrestrial.

Sinking (emo from Pittsfield, MA)

To clarify, this is, like, grungy, post-hardcore “emo,” since at this point I realize half this list could fall under that same blanket term.

Sloping (folk rock from Atlanta, GA)

Only collection of completed songs (called, naturally, Completed Songs) blends traditional folk with ambient sounds, electronic drums, and lightly Auto-Tuned vocals. The real MVP, though, is the banjo.

Smiling (hardcore punk from Seattle, WA)

Demo-grade hardcore fondly recalling raw, late-’00s groups like Twin Stumps and Condominium. Known for snatching up the URL “areyouacop dot bandcamp dot com.”

Snacking (pop-punk from St. Petersburg, FL)

“Emo” in its most up-to-date form, which seems to mean “very melodic rock that acknowledges both pop and punk, but shies away from both.”

Surfing (vaporwave from Melbourne, Australia)

I’m not qualified to differentiate vaporwave from chillwave, but I hope this helps.

Warning (doom metal from Essex, UK)

Extremely doomy side project of 40 Watt Sun’s Patrick Walker. Sounds like Sabbath slowed way down with the intention that you actually hear the devastating lyrics.

Waving (grunge from Melbourne, Australia)

I’m not sure if “Why Go Home?” is actually jangle-pop or if I just think it is because it’s Australian, but it’s a fun opener for a record that sounds more rooted in grunge and dream pop.