UK indie quartet Sundara Karma are all ease and breeze. The band established themselves with a slew of blithe indie pop singles centered around shimmering riffs and sincere lyrics. With plenty of the nonchalance and energy typically associated with indie rock bands, coupled with ambient pop sensibilities, Sundara Karma set themselves up for success. Their debut album “Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect” took all the band’s fun, spirited indie pop-rock and mixed it in with deeper, more enigmatic elements. On tracks like “Happy Family” and “Deep Relief” Sundara Karma try their hand at social commentary, backed by swirling guitars and dark ambience. While “Flame” may still be the band’s stand-out track, on their debut album they show an ability to mix things up topically and musically that will serve them well.
Favorites: “Flame,” “She Said,” “Deep Relief”
Similar to: The Night Café, Coasts, Blossoms
These UK pop-punkers got together in 2012 and released their debut album “All We’ve Ever Known” in 2015. Gravelly vocals give their sound a grittier edge than most pop-punk bands, which has the effect of making their lyrics sound darker than they actually are. Their lyrics deal with everything from moving on to searching for the light in a situation, and are granted extra weight by the vocal delivery. Because pop-punk instrumentals tend to have a thick, gruff sound, and Light You Up are no exception, the vocals and instrumentals blend into each other. Both are husky and rough, and the vocals act as another instrumental line, creating a mesh of interlocking melodies that complement each other. This causes the listener to get lost in the overall sound of a song, rather than focusing on the lyrics. But that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Light You Up have a rich and resilient pop-punk sound that’s plenty unique enough to be memorable and worth listening to.
Favorites: “All We’ve Ever Known,” “Foxfire,” “Breathe”
Similar to: WSTR, ROAM, Seaway
The album is due for release January 12th, and is available for preorder here. Watch the video for Tonight Alive’s new single “Temple” below.
The Wild Feathers may prefer the term American over “Americana,” but either one is accurate in its description of the band. It is only fitting that The Wild Feathers have participated in tours headlined by Bob Dylan and Willie Nelson. The Nashville group’s sound incorporates the slow-and-steady roll of roots-rock, polished modern-day production elements, a country twang, and strong hints of blues. They bring a new sound to an old genre. It is impossible to listen to The Wild Feathers and not think ‘this is American.’ And while there is something old-fashioned about it, the songs are smooth and clear-cut, with just a touch of grit and gravel to make you want to drive down some dusty back-roads.
Favorites: “Overnight,” “The Ceiling,” “Left My Woman”
Similar to: The Apache Relay, The Shelters, Andrew Combs
1. I can guarantee that you know someone struggling with mental illness: The Lighthouse is a song about pretending to be alright when you’re not and about confronting the dark spaces that exist inside you. If you can’t relate, chances are you know someone who can. Take a moment to try and understand, you won’t regret it!
2. Julie is real and her music is real too: She doesn’t sugarcoat anything and even when she feels like she has no idea what she’s doing, she’ll tell you that. It’s the breath of fresh air in this stuffy industry that you need.
3. She loves New Orleans as much as you do: When she moved here in 2010, Julie knew it was her home. But you won’t see her on Bourbon! Julie’s favorite NOLA spots include The Fly, The BullDog on Magazine, Snake N’ Jakes, Buffa’s and Gasa Gasa.
4. She’s going places: After several years as the lead vocalist of a funk-rock band and one year of a solo career under her belt, Julie has written so many genres of interesting and meaningful music. There’s no doubt this lady-boss will be making waves in no time.
5. I mean, why not? What else are you doing? Tell Netflix you’re ‘not still watching,’ put down the Candy Crush and give it a try. What do you have to lose?
Julie’s single “The Lighthouse” came out yesterday, and the artist had this to say on her new song:
“I think we all have moments where we feel unhinged and The Lighthouse is a song about being okay with being a little broken. My favorite line from the song is “there’s a lighthouse in this room I watched it go dark. But there are matches everywhere what distracting spark.” Even when everything feels like it’s falling apart, there’s always another way. It may not be the healthiest thing to do, but we do what we need to do to survive and sometimes that’s enough.”
WOLFF releases gritty and unapolegetic new single “Freak Like Me.” Listen here.
The Old Pink House release their latest synthed-up alt-rock single “Neck Deep.” Listen here.
Foreign Air release new single “Lying,” full of their signature alt-pop/rock. Listen here.
Alt-pop artist Julie Elody releases her shimmery new single “The Lighthouse.” Listen here.
“Daughter” is taken from the band’s album “Manic Pixie Dream Girl,” released earlier this year.
VISTA’s live music video for “Hellbent” was filmed during the duo’s performances of the song on their recently finished “The Long Live Tour.” VISTA will be headlining “The Oasis Tour” in the US this November.