When my wife and I travel, I often make playlists for us to listen to while we drive to our various destinations. I put on an older playlist the other day, and I was reminded of four great bands. The fifth, of course, is always dedicated to someone on Twitter.
Molly Hamilton and Robert Earl Thomas are the fantastic, indie band known as Widowspeak. Formed in 2010 – although two members have since left, Widowspeak have released 2 LPs and more recently an EP, The Swamps, in their short time together. Thanks to Hamilton’s subtle, whispery voice, Widowspeak are able to produce dreamy, indie pop-rock music. “True Believer” is a perfect example of the type of music Widowspeak specializes and succeeds at.
With Private Airplane, DIY indie rockers Connections released an excellent debut album that is full of short, high-paced, and catchy songs, with most of the tracks coming under three minutes. The Columbus, Ohio band don’t play around with melody shifts – they just want to catch your attention. Even their videos are fairly entertaining. Take a peak at “Miller’s Grove”, but be patient – the actual song starts about a minute into the video.
About a year ago, indie-punk rockers Parquet Courts released their second album, Light Up Gold, which was openly greeted by critics and fans alike. Like Connections, Parquet Courts holds nothing back – they’re here to be heard and to make you want jump, dance, and bang your head. Here are a couple of songs from their performance at this year’s Pitchfork Festival – “Master of My Craft” and “Borrowed Time”, which just resonate with the sounds of the ’70s.
If you like Death Cab for Cutie, then you have to discover Hebronix, which is the solo project of Yuck’s Daniel Blumberg. In July of this year, Blumberg released his first album, Unreal, under the new moniker, and the EP consists of six, indie pop songs that would make Ben Gibbard proud. Some of the songs go beyond 7 and 8 minutes with long interludes of dreamy piano or a hypnotique chord and bassline, akin to Death Cab’s phenomenal “Transatlanticism”. As evidence, I present to you “The Plan” by Hebronix.
No, this isn’t the Chris Robinson of The Black Crowes. Rather, Chris Robinson is a 19-year old blues guitarist from the UK. He’s extremely talented and a young artists on the rise. He doesn’t sing any songs; he just strums his guitar. He’s in the midst of putting an album together, but here’s a video that demonstrates his skills. He just might be attending a blues or jazz festival in your city in the very near future.
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