3 new indie-pop bands to blow your mind (and soul)
Phoenix, Bastille, Beach House, Metronomy, The Xx… These are just some of the contemporary names that knows, like no one else, how to combine pop, electronic and indie-rock in an irresistible way, attracting an audience that, above all, knows how to recognize a well-written song.
And the reason to make music for music’s sake is what motivates other dozens of new bands, which, with their talent for songwriting and the ability to deal with technological tools, continue to gather new fans, also passionate about music.
In this post, we are going to mention 3 very different, but great bands that have everything they need to hit the charts worldwide. Check it out.
Don’t be surprised if the word PIXIES comes to your mind as soon as you play any song by this band. After all, these Oakland mates harkens back to the best line ups of the 4AD era, a label that had the merit of releasing bands like Kim Deal’s Breeders and, of course, the Pixies classics.
About the band: Like a rainbow captured in shades of gray, Oakland’s PARALLEL draws on the post-punk psychedelia of bands like The Chameleons, Sad Lovers and Giants and the 4AD pantheon as well as the minimalist atmospherics of Slowdive, Wire, and Low to craft dream pop that is both lush and austere, sparse and overflowing. Parallel started playing together in the fall of 2019, writing the bulk of their first album while masked and distanced in their drummer Maria’s basement.
Making their live debut in July 2021, the band released their debut mini-album on Cherub Dream Records in April 2022, and will be going on a West Coast tour from Vancouver to Tijuana in May 2022. In addition to Parallel, members are also involved with a wide variety of other projects, including Ragana, Nothing Natural, Entrapment, and Lizard Bitch, and have also played in Negative Standards, Romantic Feelings, and nasty.dilemma.
The biggest challenge with Pretty Bitter is listening to any of their songs without becoming a fan right away. Like Parallel, this DC-based band makes music at its best: guided by the heart and love of indie-rock. They are currently releasing a string of singles month after month and it goes without saying that each one manages to surpass the other in terms of quality, like this “She’s pure astral light (or so she says)”, a little pop gem.
About the band: Pretty Bitter is Emma Bleker, Brendan Ra Tyler, Zack Be, Stephen Rodriguez and Chris Smith from Washington DC, indie dreamgaze. The group were featured in The Washington Post print and digital mediums speaking on the true meanings in depth of their debut full length album Patchwork. The next single, “The Damn Thing Is Cursed” will be release in june.
Jungle, Chet Faker, GOTYE, Gorillaz, MGMT, Big Wild: STRVCK is a new band that’s on the same level as all of them. After all, here we have everything needed for a hit: synths, a catchy chorus, a sensual vocals, and, of course, the backing vocals full of oh oh oh ohs… The only difficulty with Strvck is staying still while listening .
About the band: The band STRVCK derives its name from a nearly fatal accident in which singer Chelsea Seth Woodward was struck by a bolt of lightning as he inserted his key to unlock the driver-side door of his vehicle. He was subsequently rushed to the hospital, suffering a large cut on the back of his head, a concussion, and some short term memory loss. Miraculously he emerged from the event with no long term injuries.
In early 2020, Chelsea and fellow Austin, TX musician, Drew Walker joined forces, creating what is now the songwriting/ performing duo STRVCK. Their sound bounces between guitar driven indie rock and dreamy synth pop. Together with help from producer (and sometimes co-writer) Max Frost, they created their debut Album, “Day One.”
2 Things about Strvck
RC – Your music uses and abuses technological tools. Do you think that, today, this is the best way to make indie pop or is the whole process still based on writing a good song on the guitar?
S – While we can appreciate the purest approach some people take, limiting their musical palette to traditional guitar, piano, drums, and bass, and perhaps recording with analog gear and tape. I’d say we are a lot less precious about what tools we use and more concerned with the musical outcome. I don’t think there is a best way to get there. You gotta use what tools inspire you. It’s a constant balance of what you’re comfortable with and trying things that challenge you. Sometimes a song idea blooms from a single guitar part, sometimes from a simple synth chord progression, other times it’s a nearly complete digital opus Drew creates before I even begin to add lyrics. We love the process and want to keep our writing ever changing and fresh. We fear no collaboration. Once Drew and I have contributed all that we can, we work with other producers and engineers to add more facets and greater dimensions to the work.
RC – You use V instead of U like Chvrches. Is there any symbolism in the band’s name?
S – We’re fans of Chvrches but that wasn’t the inspiration behind the spelling. It was more out of necessity because so many band names had been taken. We were aiming for it to be “struck” but settled for STRVCK.
Bonus: Taylor Henry
Anyone who has followed me here for a long time knows that I have a serious relapse towards young singers who sing their disappointments. And one of the ones that surprised me the most – even because they only released one single so far – was Taylor, no Swift, but Henry.
2 Things about Taylor Henry
RC – “That’s Alright” is your first single and it’s also a hit (in my opinion). The next singles that are coming will also have this pop-sentimental vibe?
TH – Thank you so much for saying that it really means a lot. All of my songs are originally written acoustically and the next song shows this off.
RC – Your first single is very well produced, with all the string sections and stuff….When you write your songs you think about all the background sound or your process is more simple, like you and your guitar?
TH – Not particularly, I mainly just write them on acoustic and try to get the melody and chords really strong. Then I bring the sketch of the song to my producer Matteo Russo and work on the lyrics together . After a few voice memos, and we feel like we have it in a good spot we do a demo with him and our other collaborator Cody Christain. After we feel like its in a good spot we will rerecord all the instruments. Its really a studio project how the songs are arranged.
So, speaking about indie-pop, which one is your favorite artist or band?