Have a listen to a couple of jams from well-known artists, and a few from ones you've likely never heard of before:
1. The Pressure Kids -- Catherine In Moonlight
Based in Nashville, The Pressure Kids formed during their college years. They've since become a fixture in the Southeast -- touring at numerous venues throughout the region. The five-person group (Nick Johnson, Allan Cuva, Justin Bavier, Zach Bodman, and the wickedly talented Katy Carmichael) offers the track "Catherine in Moonlight" -- a tune demonstrating the band's ability to develop a wonderfully melodic and harmonious concept.
In a city known for the country genre, The Pressure Kids are bucking the trend -- as they figure to be a rising giant in the burgeoning Nashville indie scene. Stay tuned...you will be hearing from them in the future.
2. Alvvays -- In Undertow
After over a year of consternation from the fan base, Alvvays announced that it will release their second album entitled Antisocialites this upcoming September. The Toronto-based group had been playing what we all presumed to be tracks from their upcoming album. They've given us a sneak peak with "In Undertow." In classic Alvvays fashion, it lived up to the hype as a brilliantly constructed example of dream pop.
3. MC Lyte -- Cha Cha Cha
The late 1980's/early 1990's music scene in Brooklyn was legit. Rappers from all throughout the city were popping up in rapid succession. At the time, MC Lyte rose to stardom within an industry largely dominated by men. In fact, she was the first female rapper to have released a full album (Lyte As a Rock).
"Cha Cha Cha" is quick, clever, highly catchy, and speaks to the immense talent MC Lyte possesses.
4. Mac DeMarco -- Freaking Out The Neighborhood
"Freaking Out The Neighborhood" appeared on DeMarco's first album entitled 2. DeMarco's music encompasses elements from numerous genres -- including lo-fi, jangle pop, psychedelic rock, and the broad base of indie rock. These components are plainly clear in this track, as the Canadian artist conjures up a 'beachy feel' with this jam. It's utterly perfect for those lazy days basking in the encapsulating warmth of the sun.
DeMarco's latest album This Old Dog dropped this past April.
5. Arcade Fire -- Sprawl II (Mountains Beyond Mountains)
The grandiose group Arcade Fire provided the audience with the triumphant track "Sprawl II: Mountains Beyond Mountains." Vocalist Regine Chassagne took the lead on this piece of art. Her airy voice paired beautifully with the exuberant and often powerful beats of the song. Duly, the art and creativity for this music video is certainly something to appreciate.
Chassagne isn't often the lead vocalist for the band. However, her commanding of certain tracks is both nostalgic and haunting in the best way possible. Examples of this would include "Haiti" and "In The Backseat."
6. Arctic Monkeys -- A Certain Romance
The Arctic Monkeys have been together since 2002 -- a rather fascinating feat considering lead singer Alex Turner is only 31 years of age. On their hit debut album, "A Certain Romance" delighted the audience with fast-paced drumming and elongated guitar strumming courtesy of bassist Nick O'Malley. This song is simply excellent when in need of a jump-start during any sort of physical activity.
7. The Last Shadow Puppets -- Standing Next To Me
During a hiatus with the Arctic Monkeys, Turner paired with Miles Kane and James Ford to form this side-project group called The Last Shadow Puppets. The music is certainly darker than what we've been accustomed to hearing from the Arctic Monkeys. As opposed to aggressive hits from both the guitar and drums, The Last Shadow Puppets has more of a concentration of intertwining indie rock with classical elements. "Standing Next To Me" is an example of this premise.
8. Arcade Fire -- Song On The Beach/Photograph
There isn't a single person on Earth without some sort of stress. We all deal with it in certain ways, and it may be more crippling to someone than another. It's often easy to get overwhelmed in certain situations. For that moment when one feels as if life is compressing them into a small box, have a listen to this tremendous score by Arcade Fire members William Butler and Owen Pallett. It was featured in the 2013 Academy Award-winning film Her.
9. HOLYCHILD -- Best Friends (DADO Remix)
Known for operating in the newly popular Brat Pop genre, Los Angeles band HOLYCHILD is a master at accurately tackling social commentary within its content. Lead singer Liz Nistico often delves deep artistically when trying to convey both emotion and tangible feeling. This remix of the original "Best Friends" is complemented by Nistico's organic production of the video. It's shot throughout an incredibly diverse neighborhood of Atwater Village in Los Angeles.
10. Blu -- ChangeYaWorld
Much like Nistico, Blu is incredibly personal within his powerful and reflective lyrics. He isn't bashful when it comes to fully exploring the human psyche through his art. A native of Los Angeles, Blu might not be a well-known commodity when it comes to mainstream music, but he certainly has a hardcore following of loyal supporters beneath the surface.
Main Image Source: Katy Carmichael