Indie music has grown to include so many things. It’s not just music that comes out on independent labels, but speaks to an aesthetic that deviates from the norm and follows its own quirky heart. This can take the form of rock, pop or folk music. In a way, that says as much about the people who are drawn to it as it is about the people who make it.
Every week, Uproxx rounds up the best new indie music from the past seven days. This week we received Gang Of Youths’ new album, the start of a new era for Florence + The Machine, and Sasami’s long-awaited second album.
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Youth Gang — real time angel
Australian five-piece band Gang Of Youths have been gaining traction in the US for several years, but their latest LP real time angel is sure to be their most talked about release to date. Lead singer David Le’aupepe infuses witty lyrics and self-effacing jabs over cascading chords and luminous melodies for an outing that Uproxx’s Steven Hyden calls a “true achievement.”
Sasami first hit the indie scene with her sweet, acoustic, guitar-driven self-titled debut album. But for his second album Squeeze, released this week, Sasami shows a tougher side. Throughout eleven tracks, the singer absolutely rips on electric guitar and distinguishes between metal and EDM with tracks like “Say It” and the raucous “Sorry Entertainer.”
Bakar — no one is home
British musician Bakar has been buzzing around his name since his debut in 2018. With this week’s album no one is home, Bakar asserts himself as an independent star. The release oscillates between its playful side and its vulnerable side, criticizing people’s prejudices on the track “Not From Here” while showing off its catchy songwriting on “NW3”.
Black Country fans, New Road are likely still reeling from the departure of the lead singer and the band’s canceled North American tour. Luckily, British band Caroline’s self-titled LP is similar enough to BCNR to keep fans entertained. The eight-piece London-based collective shared their haunting debut this week, an album that occasionally gains momentum through a multitude of instruments while appreciating the importance of a silent string ballad.
Florence + The Machine – “King”
It’s been several years since Florence + The Machine last released an album, but that’s all about to change as this week the band returned to kick off a new musical era with the track ‘King’. . Not only does the song provide space for Welch to show off her incredibly powerful voice, but it’s also a compelling commentary on gender roles in the music industry, as Welch herself reflects on how she feels about herself. modeled on male artists early in his career. .
Toro Y Moi – “The Loop”
Toro Y Moi’s Chaz Bear has been churning out music under the moniker for nearly 12 years, and it doesn’t look like he’s slowing down any time soon. Continue to prepare his eighth studio album mahal, slated for release in late April, the musician drops groovy number “The Loop.” The track is driven by a funky bass line and dynamic keys and features lighthearted lyrics about keeping up to date with friends in different time zones.
Mdou Moctar — Africa Victim (Deluxe)
Niger-based Mdou Moctar gained huge success in the US last year with the release of the delightful album Africa Victim Last year. After touring the world behind the release, the band returns to bolster the LP with a deluxe release. The neo-psychedelic rock project adds some demos and live tracks dating back to the release of the original album, showing Mdou Moctar’s ability to create captivating and intoxicating tunes.
Girlpool – “Dragging My Life in a Dream”
The Girlpool duo continue to tease the sequel to their 2019 album with “Dragging My Life Into A Dream”, another single from their upcoming fifth studio album. Forgiveness. The dark, melodic track explores themes of insecurity and isolation, as singer Avery Tucker confronts his tendency to romanticize the past.
Jean Dawson – “PORN ACTOR*”
After making countless year-end lists in 2020 for his Pixel Bath album, Jean Dawson shares the polished track “PORN ACTING*” as her first release of the year. With the new single, Dawson once again proves he’s a relentlessly innovative songwriter, combining confidence with a chaotic mix of heavy melodies and piercing guitars. About the song, Dawson explains, “We’re all the same, we’re all sacks of flesh, trying to prove we’re not as bad as we know we are.”
Talker – “My Medicines”
Los Angeles-based musician Talker has shared a number of playful tunes ahead of her upcoming In fear of insignificance EP, but with his latest track “My Meds”, Talker shows a more intimate side to his songwriting. The bliss track is a way to understand the ups and downs of mental health and the fact that while getting medicated is sometimes necessary, it can still be hard to accept.
Giant Waste of Man – “Swimming”
Following their release in 2019 The politics of loneliness, Los Angeles-based band Giant Waste Of Man, shares the gripping ballad “Swim.” The song features the singer’s textured lyrical delivery, which is very reminiscent of The National’s Matt Berninger.
Cola – “So Excited”
Cola, the new group formed by some members of the recently separated group Ought, officially announced their first album In depth view this week with the random song “So Excited”. The single is a more detached look at their songwriting, combining drowned vocals with urgent instrumentation to create a song the band considers a “cornerstone” of their upcoming debut.
Washington band Enumclaw have quickly positioned themselves as ones to watch with a handful of songs released in 2021. Now armed with a new label and new material, the group shares the distant single “2002”. As the self-proclaimed “best band since Oasis,” Enumclaw certainly has a lot going for it. But if their upcoming music sounds like “2002,” their claims don’t sound so lofty.