‘Nightmare’is the first synthesis of acoustic indie and alt-rock to spill from the debut EP, Aren’t You Proud?, from Denver Colorado’s most nostalgically euphonic drop-dead stunning duo, Culture Bloom.
If Placebo penned bitter-sweet symphonies in the same vein as The Verve and mainlined a little Death Cab for Cutie into that vein, the alt-90s melodiousness would hit with exactly the same force of impact as Nightmare.
The emotional weight carried within the harrowed and haunted layers of vocal harmonies as they collide with the stabbing guitar lines resonates as infinitely more than the sum of all parts, allowing Nightmare to stand as a testament to the song-crafting capacities of the duo that should be on every alt indie fan’s radar.
Stream Nightmare on Spotify and stay tuned for the EP release on October 20th.
Lost Foxes elevated South Carolina’s indie scene with their poetically plaintive latest single, Petrichor. Hearing it, you’d be forgiven for thinking the past two decades have been erased by the echoes of the early 00s in the melodies that haven’t lost their ability to wrap a noose-like grip around the rhythmic pulses and pluck the heartstrings in time with the angular guitar notes.
The intimate lo-fi touches to the chamber string-accentuated release make it effortless to lock into the resonance that is strewn across the verses which reminisces on darkly mundane days as the instrumental effervescence lets the sun shine through the salvation of escapism.
The four-piece has come an illustriously long way since their early days of playing with loops on Logic Pro and singing about beans in 2020. Following the inspiration of Twenty One Pilots, AJR and COIN, they got to work on their debut album, Welcome to Kiff, which debuted in 2022 to tell the tale of three protagonists escaping totalitarianism. Petrichor is the latest chapter in the outfit’s legacy, and it is one you’re going to want to read time and time again.
Petrichor was officially released on September 29: Stream it on Spotify.
Garage rock and 00s indie converged in the latest radio-ready single from the breakthrough artist Jake Kulak & the Modern Vandals, who will undoubtedly reach even greater heights in their already accoladed career when this riff-soaked euphonic masterpiece hits the airwaves.
Attaching the word masterpiece to a review may sound like a hyperbolic stretch, but there’s no exaggerating the infectious energy in the vintage angular guitar melodies that pop even harder than when the Strokes hit the fretboard.
Caution Tape is the perfect introduction to Kulak’s signature stadium-filling guitar chops, which flood the track around the lyrics that lick resonance into the mix by alluding to the lengths we go to in a bid to evade stagnation.
So far in his career, the Connecticut-hailing artist has toured across the states and beyond, tearing up stages in Norway and Sydney, and picked up multiple awards and nominations along the way. On the basis of Caution Tape, it is all too easy to see why.
Caution Tape will officially release on February 24th. Hear it on SoundCloud.
Alt-rock nomad Charlson bravely extended his synth-dripping single, Night Sounds IV, across an epic 7-minute duration. While that track length may make Gen Z recoil in fear, this 00s indie-loving millennial was absorbed by every dark synth-dripping progression.
With a similar vibe to Johnny Marr’s debut album, Night Sounds IV from the independent artist’s forthcoming album, Night Sounds. It’s an energetic introduction to Charlon’s new venture into indie rock territory. One which pays a nuanced ode to Poison Ivy’s decadence and the Generation Terrorists era of the Manic Street Preachers in the crunchy guitars in the second segment of the enduring cry in the dark before it breaks into an orchestral laced outro.
The high energy of the release that comes complete with synthy blues motifs is an apt sonic reflection of those feelings that plague us when our heads hit the pillow. It certainly won’t help you sleep, but it’s a gregarious extension of solidarity for anyone with haunted self-awareness. Jack Kerouac’s quote of ‘the only people for me are the mad ones’ certainly springs to mind.
Night Sounds is due for release on October 14th. Hear it on SoundCloud.
Taken from his sophomore album, Unfinished Art, Go Go Gadget Pink Packet’s standout single, Sno Globe, is an emotion-driven hit of alt-indie, which throws back to the 00s while simultaneously embracing autonomously expressive melodic innovation.
Starting with an almost outtake-y prelude, the zealous lo-fi indie single breathes bedroom pop intimacy, with an extra flavour of sticky-sweet power-pop in the overdriven guitars, which carry as much emotion as the raw yet sugared vocal harmonies.
In his own words, the Sherrill, NY-based solo artist, writes common man blues records, perfectly encapsulating the immediate resonance you find in the dejection.
Alt-indie-rock rarely falls into the swoon-worthy category, but when it packs as much soul as an Amy Winehouse record along with stormy melodic instrumentals, it is impossible not to be overcome by the level of feverish alchemy. Lewis Shepperd’s latest single, Follow You, is the perfect example.
With a curveball of a breakdown, the track briefly evolves into a feat of alt-hip-hop before the dreamy indie vocals breathe more expressive soul into the timeless single as they find synergy with the guitars that carry hints of blues. After honing in on their talent in function bands, it is safe to say that Lewis Shepperd’s place is well and truly in the original music scene. The individuality and gravitas that he brings to the airwaves are practically unparalleled.
Ins Kino is the recording project of Raleigh, North Carolina, based singer-songwriter Evan Farkas, and ‘Coming Around’ is the first single from his forthcoming debut EP. There’s a melancholic-yet-upbeat feel to the track, reminiscent of The Divine Comedy, early Smiths, or My Life Story. That could be down to Farkas’ use of strings and woodwind over a pushy, bouncy rhythm section, rather than simply relying on the more usual ‘indie’ guitar, bass, and keyboards approach.
It’s a nice mix of cynical and optimistic, chilled-and-mellow yet somehow bouncy-and-upbeat all at once, hooky melodies and a catchy pop chorus coupled with orchestral, cinematic sweeps and swooshes from the off-beat instrumentation, Farkas’ vocal beautifully delivered in that sort of almost-distracted, sardonic Neil Hannon, Ed Harcourt kind of way. It’s undeniably chamber pop, but with an eye to lazy, witty lyrics and deep, crooning vocals.
Before singer-songwriter and instrumentalist Peter Horton’s relocation from NYC to Tokyo, he performed with artists such as El Niño. After putting down roots in Japan and being inspired by the culture, he was ready to make his debut as a solo artist.
His debut album, Spirit of Inquiry, released in 2020, containing 20 tracks that meld elements of 00s alt-rock with 80s synth-pop. The lead track, Out of My Head, kicks off with angular indie jangle-pop riffs before the synths start to do the heavy lifting with the melodies while the guitars lace the soundscape with effervescently brash garage rock tones.
The eccentricity, combined with the sonic innovation, which Peter Horton brought to Out of My Head, will be a fresh experience for even the most discerning indie-pop fan. The lyrics are sure to resonate with anyone struggling to get back on track and feeling on top. Given that we have all just collectively endured a global pandemic, Peter Horton’s intended audience will have expanded exponentially.
You can check out Peter Horton’s debut album by heading over to Spotify.
‘Better Off Alone’ is the latest feat of pop punk from Las Vegas artist, Cxldface, which will throw you right back to the 00s era of alt-rock while implanting a viscerally modernistic perennial earworm which ensures that there’s little chance of forgetting the infectiously hyped melodies.
Considering we’re all spending a little more time alone than usual, it’s easy to see how Better Off Alone could be a sanity-saving playlist staple for many. With reminders that there’s plenty of worse things than solidarity, euphorically sonic synth lines and the punchy hook-laden guitars, Better Off Alone practically spoon feeds serotonin.
At just 18 years old, Cxldface, is able to boast a maturity to his sound and a potent enough amount of distinction through his tendency to meld elements of electronica, hip hop and indie into his empoweringly scathing anthems. Get him on your radar.
Better Off Alone is now available to stream via Spotify
Brisbane-based singer-songwriter, Litters, has unleashed their fiery New Wave Indie track ‘Diamond Eyes’. If you could imagine what it would sound like if Arcade Fire and Jack Johnson collaborated, you’ll get an idea of how Litters pulled off the perfect balance of sonic energy and tender intricacy.
With an enticing rhythmic command complete with angularly hypnotic guitar, a smorgasbord of influences stylistically banded together and a significant serving of authentic aural ingenuity, Diamond Eyes is about as efficacious as a blackhole when it comes to pulling you in.
Diamond Eyes isn’t just radio-ready, it should be topping the Indie charts.
You can check out Diamond Eyes for yourselves by heading over to SoundCloud.