Browsing Tag

Alt Indie Rock

The 60s and 70s have swung back with riotous force in At the Arcade’s scuzzed-up slice of garagey alt-rock, With You

At the Arcade served up a sleazily scuzzed slice of garagey alt-rock for their latest single, With You, which puts the emotion into as much overdrive as the riffs. Somewhere between the 60s and the 80s, the riotously eclectic outfit finds its distinctive-by-design prodigal edge that will leave you ricocheting between past eras while affirming that THIS is the sound of the future.

Ensuring that the bouncy and brashy chorus guitars are just as infectious as the salaciously sweet vocals, With You is a track you definitely won’t mind tattooed across your temporal lobe. The Rotherham indie rock aficionados have been revered for their superlatively high-energy shows since 2017. It is about time the airwaves got a taste of their harmony-heavy fervour.

With You was officially released on March 24th. Check it out on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Alt-rock thespian Lucifers Beard worked his histrionic magic in the conceptual sequel single, Lady Loser

After we rolled with the punches in Lucifers Beard’s single, The Guy with a Black Eye, we’re stoked to sink our teeth into the conceptual follow-up, Lady Loser, which takes place years after the antihero’s skirmish, where the arrogance has subsided to themes of loss, regret, forgiveness, and hope.

Until the outro, the brashy tumultuousness has been dialled back to give way to the crooned vocals that envelop you over the theatrically psychedelic rock opera-Esque score that still emits electrifying energy, but there’s a remorsefulness spilling from the thespian rock arrangement, mastered by Ed Ripley (NOFX, Frank Turner, Goat Girl).

As the song concludes, after the swan song-ish ensemble, we hear Lucifers Beard’s maniacal charisma get a last burst of juggernautical creativity. It is enough to make you desperate for the story to become a trilogy.

Lady Loser will officially release on December 15th. Hear it on SoundCloud.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Deadpan indie rock icons in the making, Hairpin, walk ‘The Line’ in their latest earworm

Fans of deadpan indie in the same vein as John Grant, Spector and Jack Ladder will be just as hooked on the sardonic candour in Hairpin’s earworm of a sophomore single, The Line.

With a funk-riding indie disco beat as the backbone to the track that allows angular guitar melodies and gravelly post-punk-Esque basslines to form arrestive progressions under the magnetic indie drawling vocals as they lament the frustrations of contemporary connections, it is all too easy to succumb to the grip of the snappy, swanky hit.

The NYC independent five-piece, fronted by Nate Pozin, self-produces all their material, allowing it to retain its autonomy, which has seen the up-and-coming outfit make short work out of making their mark in the industry.

So far, they have sold out every show in New York by word of mouth alone. In a time where alt-indie rock success stories are tragically few and far between, it speaks volumes of their revolutionary capacity to win over a crowd and forge playlist staples from their home studio.

The Line is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Desperate Times Call for Damning Juggernautical Anthems, Cardiff’s Columbia Answered That Call with Their Dark Psych Rock Hit, Disorder

Following the phenomenal success of their 2022 album, Embrace the Chaos, the Cardiff indie alt-rock innovators, Columbia, have unleashed the all-consuming furore of their post-punk-tinged post-Britpop single, Disorder. With the harbingering urgency of the swaggering vocals as they paint a damning depiction of our dystopic bleak modern age against the vortex of psych guitars, Columbia reached the pinnacle of visceral realism with Disorder.

I don’t think I’ve been this excited about a newly discovered band since I tuned into Desert Mountain Tribe for the first time. It comes as no surprise that their producer at Kings Road Studio described Disorder as the biggest sounding track he’s made with a band. It’s a juggernaut that makes no bones about dragging you into the dark disparaging societal view was born from.

Disorder is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Vince Spano tracks cyclical torment in his achingly intimate alt-indie-rock single, Been There Before

Austin Texas-hailing artist Vince Spano left our hearts raw and our ears honeyed with his alt-indie-rock latest single, Been There Before. He’s been on our radar for a while, but with each new release is a new testament to his consistent development as an expressionist and artist.

It is always a pleasure to track the progression of an artist; to bear witness to Spano’s development, which happened in such a short span of time, has only affirmed what we already knew about this inspiringly talented artist. He is an icon in the making, and if anyone can revive the love for rock, it is Spano.

The introspective lyrics are just as intimately vulnerable as the instrumentals, which amp up the wistful melancholy through the gentle tremolo guitars, soft focus and harmonic backing that contrasts his grungy rock vocal timbre.

Here’s what Vince Spano had to say on his latest release:

“Been There Before is a continuation of my last single, conveying a more emotional approach to the same subject. In this track, my sound pays homage to the rock music I grew up with, but it is also fresh and new, entwining nostalgia and innovation.”

Been There Before was officially released on October 7th, ahead of the upcoming EP, The Prescribed Project. Check it out on SoundCloud and Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Kyle Jaymes is a Perennial Millennial in his latest intricately melodious indie rock hit

Kyle Jaymes

New Hampshire indie singer-songwriter, Kyle Jaymes, brought a pioneering sense of melodicism to 00s emo with his latest single, Perennial Millennial. For anyone that grew up with Death Cab for Cutie and is looking for a matured take on sonic nihilism, Perennial Millennial is the finest wine in the metaphorical cellar.

Since breaking away from his indie rock band, Call Her Alaska, he’s become a one-man powerhouse, fuelled by his emotionally charged lyricism, intricate acoustic guitar hooks and euphonic production style, which gives all the angst of pop punk and none of the brash overtones.

Perennial Millennial will officially release on August 30th. Check it out here.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Scottish alt-rock pioneers her picture showed us ‘The Nature of It’ with their debut single.

Scotland’s freshest 4-piece alt-rock ensemble, her picture showed us what originality sounds like in 2022 with their debut single, The Nature of It. Their citation of Ben Howard and Pink Floyd as their influences barely scratches the riff-powered surface of their blend of colourful reverb-dripping ambience and intensely overdriven rock.

Just as the records from My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive, and The House of Love demand to be listened to at maximum volume, the hauntedly beckoning vocals over the artfully proggy instrumentals that throw cataclysmic breakdowns at you at the drop of a hat were built for complete audiophilic immersion. I’m yet to hear another more visceral alt rock debut this year.

The Nature of It is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Drift into the ether with KAIS’ latest alt-indie-rock hit, Hot Air Balloon

The Canadian, Cyprus-based singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist, KAIS, has released his metaphorical alt-indie rock masterpiece, Hot Air Balloon, which uses the slightly archaic mode of transport as a parable to reflect the importance of persevering our mental space.

It takes some serious reading between the anthemic uplifting lines to pull out the protestive fire that any establishment would be desperate to put out through fear of it cutting profit margins that are boosted by dull hiveminds. On the flip side of that, texturally, Hot Air Balloon is a dreamy, kaleidoscopic blister of bliss, which is all too welcome in these easy to lament times.

Every time, KAIS breezes back even better than the last time we heard his exploratively introspective tracks, which still come with that A-list radio-ready appeal, despite the seemingly infinite depth.

Here is what he had to say about his latest release

“In some ways, Hot Air Balloon is a metaphor for pregnancy, inspired by the sequence of moving along and the process revealing itself, where a spirit permeates the boundless world, reflecting how a hot air balloon grows and rises into the ether, where our thoughts drift and amalgamate. The ether may be our final escape from those who manipulate us with vested interests in how we think and act.”

Hot Air Balloon will officially drop on June 6th, 2022. Hear it for yourselves on Spotify, SoundCloud and Bandcamp.

Review by Amelia Vandergast

Spotlight Feature: Tim Jackson reached the pinnacle of tender tenacity in his alt-indie single, An Unusual Time

With his standout single, An Unusual Time, taken from his sophomore album, Litter in the Park, the London-based singer-songwriter Tim Jackson, proved that the most consoling tracks don’t evade the grittiest facets of our existence, they encompass them and deliver us from them with pure transcendent panache.

An Unusual Time is so soothing it’s practically medicinal for the way Jackson contends with the unrelenting uncertainty in all of our lives with infectious ease. Sure, there’s been no short supply on exports of lockdown-inspired singles, but Jackson’s Elliott Smith-Esque vocals and tender tenacity are something to behold time and time again. There is as much nuance in the endlessly unravelling lyricism as in the mellifluous complex time signatures that bring an organic dynamic to the indie alt-rock meets jazz sanctum of a soundscape.

Here’s what Tim Jackson had to say about An Unusual Time

“This song is something we can all relate to after several years of once in a lifetime events; it speaks to the sense of bewilderment I was feeling when I wrote it. The title is both lyrically straightforward and cheeky, given the odd 5/8-time signature.”

Litter in the Park is now available to stream in full via Spotify.

Keep up to date with the latest releases from Tim Jackson via Facebook.

Review by Amelia Vandergast


West Ridge Circle – Stuck in This Chair: The Ultimate Off-Kilter Alt-90s Ode to Ennui

Taken from their debut EP, Nobody Home, West Ridge Circle’s standout single, Stuck in This Chair, is an eclectic array of era-spanning rock nuances and modernist lyrical vulnerability.

Fans of Pavement, Pixies and Nirvana will want to drink up the 21st-century melancholy that drips through the lyrics and captures the frustration that lingers in unrelenting ennui. It’s tracks like Stuck in This Chair that prove there’s a beauty in collective misery, that now, we can hear lyrics, and it isn’t an Olympian stretch of the imagination to get on the same level. Granted, that isn’t always a given, but West Ridge Circle are thriving on the funk that is writhing through our existential hive minds.

With the J Mascis-style guitar chops, the despondent Americana blues-rock vocals that come with a tinge of the Seattle alt-90s sound and the eerily relatable lyrics, Stuck in This Chair has all the makings of a melancholy alt-rock playlist staple. We hope there’s another release nestled in the pipeline.

Stuck in This Chair is now available to stream on Spotify.

Review by Amelia Vandergast