Spring, spring, spring. For us lucky folk, it’s here. And for the not so lucky folk, we’re so very sorry. So, we made you this indie dojo full of sunshine and rainbows (or what we think could replace the real thing). We hope it makes up for the lack there of.
Nothing Means Nothing
We Moved (ft. Benja Lyman)
Pigpen Theatre Co.
Sound Of Money
It’s Tunesday AND St. Paddy’s Day! 2 great excuses for a celebration. And what is a celebration without a playlist!? Nothing…a celebration is nothing without a playlist. So cheers to free playlists and copious amounts of green everything.
Running (Prod. Helping Hands)
Nine Matches (prod. by Noise Club)
If You Dont Love Her
Portable charger? Check. Craftily packed suitcases? Check. Showcase RSVPs sent? Check. Yep, ninjas. We’re ready to head out to SXSW next week. We can’t believe it’s finally here, but it is. It’s time to charge down to Austin to wander the streets seeing band after band, DJ after DJ. As you’ve come to know from following this site for so many years, each of our editors has a unique set of musical tastes. Sometimes we all have picks in the middle of our colective Venn Diagrams, but, for the most part, we all lean our different ways. With that in mind, we wanted to highlight the must-see acts from each ninja. So, bust out your pen and notepad. You’ll want to write these down.
This artist popped onto our radar with the undeniable charm of “If You Went Away.” His vocals are somewhat unrefined, which definitely adds to the appeal. We’ve only heard a few tunes, and the whole time, we’ve been wondering – what does his live show sound like? We’ll find out soon.
If you’re looking for a raucous indie rock show that’s sure to be full of energy, catchy pop hooks, and the unavoidable need to dance, then CRUISR will be a show not to miss. These cats have a knack for engaging pop-driven indie, and we’re positive it will translate into a live performance with ease.
This eclectic Nashville act promises to deliver plenty of on-stage intrigue, given the amount of instrumentation that goes into their “world pop” arrangements. Their vocal arrangements are extremely original as well, which should be interesting when translated into a live show.
This has got to be one of our favorite artists as of late. Undeniably unique, unpredictable, and unconventional, this vocalist always dazzles with his impeccable range, and intricate soundscapes. If there is one artist that I personally “can’t miss,” it’s Jack Garratt.
What would Texas be without some beer-drinkin’, whiskey-shootin’, shit-kickin’, dusty-floor-dancin’ tunes? This infectious folk artist embodies those long-lasting memorable moments with a few friends, some cold drinks, and some frivolous dancing. He encapsulates Americana in pop-centric folk rock, and he does so from all the way down in South Africa.
We had the pleasure of interviewing this young Manchester-based vocalist a few months back, and we have to say, we’re overwhelmingly excited to catch his live show. In fact, if there’s a “must see” show based on vocal finesse, it would be this one. His tone, range, and dexterity is something that we just can’t pass up.
We’ve been hip to this act for quite some time, falling enamored with their highly contagious tune, “Drinking Games.” Part of our adoration came some of their projects with Red Brick Song’s Casablanca sessions, which our the best collaborations the indie scene has seen in the past few years.
If Raymond Carver Were Born In The 90s
After playing our raucous ‘TMN PResents’ party in Denver in late 2014, ASTR has continually set the bar higher on already engaging live sets. After 2014’s incredible ‘Varsity’ EP, we’re hoping 2015 sees a proper album from the New York alt-poppers.
A man within the confines of dance music needing no real introduction, Fred Falke’s ‘French-Touch’ and disco inflected house records have been a staple of countless critics, artists and fans alike for nearly two decades. Any chance to see The Fred at such an incredible festival is a must.
Bad Blood (Fred Falke Remix)
The only non-dance affiliated act on Skrillex’s OWSLA Records, Hundred Waters crafts a stripped down brand of avant-garde pop stylings. Their live sets are as engaging as they are melodic and tasteful. If you haven’t yet, pick up their sophomore LP, ‘The Moon Rang Like a Bell’.
George Maple is an iconic vocalist reining from none other than the homeland of pure talent – Australia. After having collaborated with the likes of Flume, the Future Classic artist is well on her way of becoming a global sensation. George Maple, the harmonious goddess, is making her way out to this years SXSW and we guarantee she is one not to miss.
The big name at Numbers never fails to impress with his tunes. Having been involved with Yeezus, being half of the former power duo TNGHT with Lunice, and just killing it all around, HudMo’s influence and discography knows no bounds. He continues to tear it up with every release and always puts on a great show.
Leon is the second coming of 50’s soul. His style is a mix of Marvin Gaye and Sam Cooke that epitomizes emotion in the always growing realm of singer-songwriters. “Coming Home” is a landmark single and his album is on the way. If you’re looking for an old school vibe, Leon is your man.
Here’s someone muddying the lines between electronic rock and folk in his own unique and refreshing fashion. His recent EP, Candy, is a must hear if you haven’t caught it already. This LA native is poised for a strong rest of the year and will be a perfect fit for the SXSW community.
HW&W & Symbol’s very own Sweater Beats is making his SXSW appearance this year and needless to say, this is a monumental step for the young producer. The forward-thinking artist has been soaring over the industry and this year will only be more promising for his career. If you’re headed to SXSW this year, make sure to catch Sweater Beats – but leave your sweater at home because it’ll be too hot to handle.
Flume & Chet Faker
Drop the Game (Sweater Beats Remix)
Brooklyn duo, Beacon, is undoubtedly one of the most underrated artists in today’s music world. I was foruntate enough to catch them last year on tour with Tycho and words do not do their live set or music any justice. Their eloquent way of storytelling is exemplified in their intricate sound designs along with moving melodies and touching synths. If you want an ambient, yet tranformational experience, Beacon is definitely one not to miss.
Being both a female and a UK native, Little Simz is a minority in the hip-hop realm, but please don’t underestimate her. Able to hold her own with any emcee out there, Simz first impressed us with her E.D.G.E EP last summer. Since then, she’s followed that project with multiple mixtape releas, proving that Simz has an unparalleled work ethic. The girl definitely has bars, and we’re excited to see what she brings to the table when she comes stateside for her performance at SXSW.
A true triple threat, Tory Lanez never ceases to amaze us with his many talents. As one of the brightest acts emerging from the Toronto music scene, Tory made waves with his Lost Cause mixtape last fall. The consummate entertainer, Tory’s show promises to be a memorable one, as the emcee exudes a natural charisma that draws the audience in from start to finish. Expect him to crowd surf a minimum of five times, as the Canadian strives to have as much fun as possible every night.
Snakehips x Tory Lanez
Making a name for himself last year with his quirky, uptempo, R&B insprired remixes, Trippy Turtle has undeniably become the face of Jersey Club music. Armed with an uncanny sense of humor and some high energy, bed-spring infused productions, Trippy’s showcase promises to be a blast, and we expect you’ll be struggling to catch your breath when it’s all said and done. Eee…Err Eee…Err Eee…Err FOFOFADI!
Mick Jenkins is a Chicago emcee who combines some serious jazzy vibes with an intelligent lyricism matched by few other up ‘n coming rapers. In many ways, his style transcends the current trends in hip-hop without sacrificing dope, forward-thinking production. Mick promises to be an enlightening, laid-back and smooth performance–if you haven’t already check out his mixtape The Waters to prepare.
Jay Prince is a UK-based, Soulection-affiliated rapper and vocalist who made waves with his debut project, BeFOR Our Time. Prince’s music has a distinct soulfulness to it that when combined with instrumentals from producers like IAMNOBODI, who will also be at SXSW, creates a sunny, nuanced aesthetic. Jay Prince is definitely an artist on the up ‘n up who will be awesome to see perform this early in his career.
It’s crazy to think that there are people who still question the legitimacy of electronic artists as musicians. Vancouver producer Haywyre is just one of many to disprove the closed-minded with lush, complex sonic arrangements and a clear understanding of musical composition. His performance promises to showcase impressive skills on both the keyboard and controller but, more importantly, should be a huge dance party.
All We Need (Haywyre Remix)
Another member of the Huh, What & Where collective, Kaytranada has been pioneering the future R&B/soul movement for years now and it’s been paying off in big ways. He’s been pictured recently with Rick Rubin and has created countless hits with an array of artists. His live sets are soulful, funky and ubeat making him likely one of the funnest DJ sets you’ll find at SXSW.
Wrote A Song About You (Kaytranada Edition)
No matter how much we try to plan our life or how methodical our daily routine may be, every second of our day can really go any way it damn well chooses. Except for our music. We can always choose our music. Unless the internet goes down, then….well, then, the universe decided to do whatever it damn well pleased. BUT if you are here now, you’re in good shape…..Hit play. HIT PLAY.
Might As Well Swim
It’s March. Holy crap its March! Seriously though. Where does the time go and is there any such thing as a time stopping machine? No. There isn’t. But there is a music playing machine. It’s called the internet and it brings joy into many, many lives in the form of a weekly Indie Dojo. Enjoy.
Make You Mine
Ciaran Lavery & Ryan Vail
The Colour Blue
There are a lots of things that have the power to alter our mood. And for a lot of us, it has been nothing but the weather. Wind chills and super storms and all the things opposite of warm, happy sunshine soaking into our skin. So today, instead of focusing on something we can’t control, unless you are harboring some secret X-Men like power that you should really just share with the world at this point, we should focus on something we can. Play, pause, rewind, fast forward, replay all you want. The power of mood-altering music is in your hands.
The Tallest Tree
Ill Be Your
Joshua Michael Robinson
Well, here we are, thinking we’ve made it all the way through New Music Tuesday, when this fabulous tune hits us like a ton of bricks. Pun slightly intended, we caught this on Red Brick Songs’ soundcloud, and we’ve had it on repeat ever since.
Dropping only a few hours ago, “Sweet Ascension” is an absolutely mesmerizing tune from Joshua Michael Robinson, and it carries complex intricacies of soft, lazy strumming, smokey verses, harmonious choruses, and lasting, afterglow found in only the most enchanting songs.
Written and performed by Joshua Michael Robinson, Jason Haberman and Hayden Bursk of Oh Travioso, this tune is a far departure from JMR’s usual soulful sounds, but we can’t be more grateful he decided to put it out. Simply put, it encapsulates the sheer, stunning beauty that a person’s voice and a few instruments can create. One can’t help but simply sit back and smile, drinking in all that is “Sweet Ascension”.