Here’s our latest playlist, full of the best new indie tunes from the last month:
Here’s our latest playlist, full of the best new indie tunes from the last month:
Tyne, the latest project of 19-year-old Grace Shelley, brings the horrors, charms, and pleasures of youth to the forefront of the chill pop scene.
Hailing from Cambridge, England, Tyne has become the newest cool girl of pop. Her intoxicating balance of confidence, detachment, and vulnerability make her a perfect breakout star that listeners can both admire and relate to. Despite only being in the music scene for a relatively short amount of time, Tyne is making an incredible impact on chill pop at a young age, with her few singles very quickly growing in popularity.
Formerly known as Grace Sarah, the singer made herself known with the delicate, electro-pop tune “Underwater.” At the end of 2016, Tyne was born and made her debut with “Somebodies Something,” an ambient ballad about yearning for love. This lead single is filled with an earnestness and innocence that tugs on the heartstrings, while marimba supplies a charming and simple accompaniment. Tyne has already reached a mature, signature sound from her past experiences with music, and certainly knows how to utilize synths, snaps, and drum beats while never overwhelming the delicate vocals. “Somebodies Something” signals that to establish herself as a developed artist.
“Crawl,” the singer’s latest release, begins as a stripped piano ballad and maintains bare emotion as more stylized synths and breathy harmonies come into play. We thankfully never lose the piano throughout the song– the instrument plays back and forth with synth and drum machine in an interesting but refreshing fusion. Her vocals draw inevitable comparisons to other female indie pop artists such as breakout stars Halsey and Lorde, but her unique balance of vocal raspiness and clarity sets herself and the single apart as something special and new. The lyrics tell a story of finding empowerment through heartbreak and are explicit enough to make the listener feel that bittersweet pain and acceptance. The single has been well received, with over 250,000 plays on Spotify and counting as her haunting crooning has caught the attention of many interested in the chill pop scene.
Tyne’s other 2017 single, “Girly,” shows both a coherence and great range for the up-and-coming artist. “Girly” is a delightfully upbeat celebration of the young party scene. Despite the tone change from her other two songs, Tyne never loses her cool, maintaining her reserved and chillingly monotonous tone that seems to give the poppy melody added meaning.
While Tyne is just getting started as a new artist, she is certainly a powerhouse and a star in the making.
It’s only been four months since Wallows dropped their debut single, but the fact that every show they’ve played has been sold-out might make you think otherwise.
Few bands can boast having garnered such a strong fanbase after only releasing two singles, but Wallows is one of the select few. The LA-based alternative band have been releasing music since April of this year, and have only released two singles as of August.
For a new band, I wondered how they could sound so cohesive in their first few releases. It turns out the members of Wallows, Dylan Minnette, Cole Preston, and Braeden Lemasters, have been in multiple bands together before, including The Narwhals and The Feaver. Those groups never took off, but Wallows has seen unprecedented success in their first few months. How does a group that has only been around for a few months manage to sell out The Troubadour, a venue that most artists dream of being able to play and fill during their career?
Part of their recognition can be accredited to their lead singer and guitarist, Minnette, who played Clay in Thirteen Reasons Why on Netflix. Shortly after the series aired, Wallows announced their first single “Pleaser,” which now has over 2 million plays on Spotify. The band then began playing shows, all of which quickly sold out, at venues in California including The Roxy, The Constellation Room, The Troubadour, and Slim’s.
However, to attribute all of the band’s success to Minnette and his fame from the show discredits the incredible talent of each musician in Wallows. The two songs that they have released so far are catchy, well-crafted, and lyrically polished.
While listening to their second single, “Sun Tan,” my mind drifts from driving down PCH with the windows down, to watching a sunset slowly fall below the horizon, to sitting in a jazz bar when the trumpet kicks in during the bridge. The witty change of asking “why does the sun set baby?” when the protagonist is first trying to get his tan, to questioning “why does the sun shine baby?” after he gets burned, tells a story in itself through just a few lyric changes. The range of scenes and emotions that Wallows can elicit within a short, three-minute time frame is truly rare to find.
Watching the lyric video for “Pleaser” and the music video for “Sun Tan,” it is obvious that Wallows are genuine, humble, and just want to have fun with their music. Even if the concept of a man walking around town in a giant baby mask does not precisely match the song behind it for a music video, it’s quite entertaining to watch.
Given the amount of success Wallows has seen in such a short time, they will likely continue to thrive and grow as they put out more music. For now, if you need to find me, I’ll be in Malibu blasting “Sun Tan” while I watch the waves crash onto the shore.
Find Wallows at:
New York duo Secret Weapons’ music is the last minute addition you need to make to all of your summer playlists. Their infectious blend of indie-pop, electronic and funk is fun, fresh, and powerful.
It’s obvious that Secret Weapons has an enormous amount of talent, but what’s THEIR secret weapon? Something that sets the pair apart is their remarkable versatility. The band’s forte is electro-pop music, but the unexpected flares of funk and soul elevate their music to the next level. Members Gerry Lange and Danny Rocco joined forces in 2015, also the year they released their biggest single, “Something New.”
Though they’ve been together for about two years, Secret Weapons finally released their debut album last month. Entitled ‘As the setting sun comes crashing down on me,’ the 13 tracks on this record all radiate positivity and create an atmosphere of warmth and intrigue. The album features the smash hit “Something New” as well as other infectious tunes such as “My Blue Heaven” and “konichiwild.”
Secret Weapons’ second single, “Ghost,” is a standout from the album. It exemplifies the genre-bending and ridiculously catchy melodies that the group produces. The track begins with a muffled, funky saxophone riff. From there, simple yet creative lyrics and soulful vocals are layered over a brooding synth beat that transitions into a stripped down, seductive chorus. “Ghost” harbors a darker mood than the upbeat “Something New,” but it’s a new sound that works wondrously for Secret Weapons.
With “Play God”, Sam Fender proves he’s the divine storyteller the music world needs.
The 21-year-old Newcastle native began playing in pubs when he was just 13, and it was one of these performances a few years later that caught the attention of Ben Howard’s manager. He was soon offered the chance to open for Willy Mason, which lead to opening for Ben Howard, Hozier, Catfish and the Bottlemen and more.
If Sam’s stunning first two singles are any indication, he’s soon to be a headliner himself. His first single “Play God” reached number one on the iTunes singer-songwriter charts shortly after its March release, and its follow-up “Greasy Spoon” has been getting major radio play (like, Elton John’s Beats 1 show major). Their appeal is clear upon first listen – Sam’s soulful vocals combined with indie rock melodies creates something unique, catchy and emotional.
The video for “Play God” is all those things and more, highlighting the storytelling aspects of Sam’s lyrical style. Lyrics like “sewer rats will shower the underground in a race to make ends meet” and “no matter who you are or where you been, he is watching from the screen” are reflected in the video’s ominous tone. With imagery reminiscent of The 1975’s “Settle Down”, “Play God” paints a similar picture of a grey, seaside English town that’s not-quite-right. Both videos center on young boys learning to fight, but only one features a sick dance routine, so Sam’s should go straight to the top of your watchlist.
While Sam hasn’t revealed exactly when new music is coming, I think it’s safe to say we’ll be hearing much more of him soon. If you’re not prepared to wait, though, you can see Sam at festivals across the U.K. this fall and supporting Bear’s Den on their European tour.
Adrian Galvin played drums for Walk The Moon in 2011 and released a couple of tracks under the alias of Yellerkin. Now, Galvin is back and better than ever as Yoke Lore, an indie pop powerhouse with a bright future ahead of him.
You know that little band from Ohio called Walk The Moon? Of course you do. Let’s flashback to 2011, before “Shut Up And Dance” was even an idea. Several years ago, the group’s makeup was completely different than what it is today. Every member besides lead singer Nicholas Petricca had not come into the picture yet, leaving Walk The Moon’s lineup missing 75% of the guys that we know and love today. After the independent release of their first album ‘I Want, I Want’, the guitarist, drummer and bassist of the band were all replaced. So, what happened to the previous members?
Well, we can attest to the whereabouts of one of the ex-members, namely the drummer. His name is Adrian Galvin, and yes folks, he has been making music for a while! In 2013, the New York native released a few singles and a four-song EP under the name Yellerkin, which featured dreamy, electronic accents swirling around melancholy beats. A few years later, Galvin reinvented his image from Yellerkin into who he resides as now: Yoke Lore.
Yoke Lore is rather new, having released just two EPs within the past two years. Though he doesn’t have too many songs available to the public, it’s incredibly easy to get immersed in what Yoke Lore currently has to offer. Featuring fluttering synths, booming drums, and the occasional metallic banjo twang, Galvin flawlessly infuses several different genres into one bold overall sound. “Hold Me Down,” a track from his first EP, quickly became his most popular, racking up over 4 million streams on Spotify.
Following the success of “Hold Me Down,” Yoke Lore came through with another fantastic release, this being another EP entitled ‘Goodpain’. There are five songs on this release, and each of them is just as fascinating as the rest. Galvin’s natural ability to express emotion through his voice and descriptive lyrics is extremely rare and impressive. On his song “Goodpain,” Yoke Lore presents the same features that everybody loved about his first EP. His unique vocals blend beautifully with a prominent bass line, enrapturing harmonies and some funky guitar work. The result is an infectious and airy tune that makes you feel as though you’re floating through time and space.
If you can’t get enough of Yoke Lore’s music, you may have the opportunity to see him live in the next few months! Galvin is embarking on a fall tour with Overcoats and Aquilo this fall, and may just be coming to a city near you.
Find Yoke Lore on the Internet:
If Sorority Noise and PVRIS had a love child, it would be Daddy Issues.
If you ever questioned if three feminists can rock, Daddy Issues is here to prove not only do they rock, but they rock harder than you. The Nashville based trio showcases the perfect blend between brooding lyrics, heavy guitar based rhythms, and a badass band name (sorry Dad). Their mix of punk, grunge, and pop creates an effortlessly smooth and infectious sound I can’t get enough of.
In May of this year, Daddy Issues released their second album, ‘Deep Dream.’ The record features head banging worthy songs “Boys of Summer”, “In Your Head,” and “Locked Out.” “Boys of Summer” is a jam all about getting involved in that last minute summer fling with the bad boy down the street. “In Your Head,” relays the story of developing an obsession with someone to the point of constantly wondering if they’re thinking of you. (Do you think he likes me? But does he like like me??)
My favorite song on the album, “Locked Out,” brings to mind the summer after my freshman year of college, a sweltering summer filled with memories of That 70’s Show-style hangouts in the suburbs of Dallas, bickering with my parents, getting my first tattoo, and ending my teenage years as rebelliously as possible. The lyrics tell the story of realizing you’re not enough for someone and the ways we cope with the subsequent feeling of emptiness. Daddy Issues’ grunge inspired tune takes me back to a simpler time I’d give anything to go back to.Catch Daddy Issues on tour through October 14 and feel free to relay the whole experience because I’ve got a case of FOMO.
Get Your own dose of Daddy Issues here:
The Night Game’s reminiscent sound and effervescent vocals transport listeners into a 1980s dream.
Martin Johnson has returned with a new project that is likely to make him well-known again in the alternative music scene. This name might sound extremely familiar if you grew up in the early 2000s. Johnson was the frontman of the once-chart topping pop-punk band, Boys Like Girls. While the iconic emo kid staple takes a hiatus, The Night Game continues to find success and gain more and more fans each night as they open for John Mayer on The Search for Everything Tour.
Right after Boys Like Girls said goodbye for a short while, Johnson’s contemporary new wave indie band released their first song, “The Outfield,” in April 2017. Even though they only have one song officially released, we had the opportunity to see them open for John Mayer, and the rest of the band’s material is very promising.
When listeners first hear The Night Game, comparisons to iconic ‘80s synth bands can easily be made. Sounding similar to anthemic bands such as Tears for Fears and Simple Minds, The Night Game have huge potential to make it big.
In case you didn’t know, John Mayer always hand selects his openers and continued that tradition for this tour. He discovered The Night Game in a way many of us find new music: from Spotify Discover Weekly! If The Night Game have the power to convince guitar legend John Mayer that they’re a dedicated band, they have the power to become your new favorite.
While embarking on their first tour as an opener, The Night Game will also be incorporating some solo dates as well. For the duration of August and September, they will be on their first solo tour playing intimate venues. Since The Night Game are currently on tour, new music is expected to be released from the band very soon.
With their powerful vocals, reminiscent sound, and catchy lyrics, The Night Game has the potential to become the next big alternative band. In a time when indie bands are continuously popping onto the scene, some go unnoticed and don’t end up gaining as much recognition they truly receive. However, we believe that The Night Game could very well gain the same craze that Boys Like Girls did ten years ago.
This is what breaking out of a musical category is.
In a state so highly stereotyped for producing country music and songs that bring out an artist’s true southern accent this band breaks this stereotype. Hailing from Texas, The Unlikely Candidates are a 5-piece indie rock band. Having formed in 2008, they have and always will be breaking an old cliche.
Since breaking out into the American music scene, the band has released EPs ‘Follow My Feet’ and ‘Bed Of Liars’ which were released in 2013 and 2017, respectively. During this, the band released their debut single “Follow In My Feet” which hit No.1 in the Adult Alternative Songs chart and peaked at No.9 in the Alternative Songs Chart. This single was followed up by two singles from their sophomore EP. “Your Love Could Start A War” peaked at No.36 in the Alternative Songs Chart and “Ringers” peaked at No.38 in the Alternative Songs Chart.
“Your Love Could Start A War” proved to have a popular opinion from the world, currently holding the highest-streamed song on their Spotify page with over 3.4 million streams. The song has an Arctic Monkeys-turned-U.S. feel to it. With strong guitar riffs and continuous piano rhythm, the song is quite fast-paced, but don’t let that misinterpret the words of the song. My advice is to forget the tempo, forget the guitar riffs and focus on the lyrics. This is a song you MUST check out, no ifs or buts. You’d be missing out.
Future Generations sounds like summer in New York. Riding in the back of cabs, reading in Washington Square Park and then driving out to Montauk when you get tired of sticking to the sidewalk.
The five-piece indie pop band got their start in the city, on the Bronx campus of Fordham University. They’ve come a long way from producing EPs in their dorm room, however. They signed to NYC label Frenchkiss Records and put out their debut album in 2016. The self-titled record was full of pulsing synths, shiny melodies and existential lyrics – the type not always expected in pop songs. It’s this combination that allows their sound to feel as much like a drive to the beach as it does a nostalgia you can’t quite place.
Their single “Stars” particularly has that effect, evidentially because the same song exists in an 8tracks playlist under a band called The Suits. Before preparing to crack open the indie-est plagiarism scandal of all time though, an intense sleuthing session (err, quick Google search) revealed that The Suits were, in fact, an early line-up of Future Generations. Conflict avoided.
Conflict, however, is the theme of their latest single “One More Problem” – a guitar-heavy track whose chorus asks “don’t you remember who you are?” According to a press release, it’s the first song collectively written by all five members of the band and a step towards more of a rock-driven sound that we will hopefully hear more of very soon. If you want more Future Generations right now though, you can see them at Welcome Campers 2017 festival in Springfield, MA.