19
Sep
08

Music You Haven’t Heard of But Need To Check Out

I have discovered some new indie/semi-independent bands that I want to share. A big issue for independent acts or those on relatively small labels is that they have limited exposure. News about them spreads by word of mouth and the internet. This creates a unique relationship between the bands and their fans and the fans really become a part of the band’s success in a great way than usual because the fans become part of the marketing. Also indie bands enjoy much more creative freedom and can release music that is much more appealing to the attentive listener who is not content to just casually listen to the radio. I am one such listener and this quality is what attracts me to independent artists.

Creative independence however also means financial independence in a lot of ways. This can cause bands to have to limit their recording, their touring and can some times mean curtains for independent acts. This is why I am writing this article. I want you to find a group here that you may enjoy and I want you to go over to iTunes or the bands’ respective websites and purchase some of their music. For each group I have suggested a “starter tune(s)”. So for those who just want to buy a song or two will know where to start in order to get a good taste if what the band is about. By the way members of all of these bands are Christians.

And awaaaaay we go:

Ever Stays Red

This is true 80’s pop revival at its best. Modern guitar rock with plenty of new wave groove. This music is meant to put you in a good mood and while listening you may find yourself saying “ya know, everything’s alright with the world.”

If their song “On the Brink of It All” had come out about twenty years ago it would have found its way onto “The Breakfast Club” soundtrack without a doubt.

“We love God with all of our hearts. We also love to play music.

So we play and write music to worship God. Our inspiration.”

These guys are true indie–no record label and the great thing is they have been going strong now for years. I only discovered them this year.

Starter tunes: “Explain”, “On the Brink of It All”  Hear them at http://www.purevolume.com/everstaysred

Seabird
I discovered this Credential Recordings act a few months ago but did not actually listen to any of their music until yesterday. The thought that came to mind was “what in the world have I been waiting for??” Their music is just so different. Seabird is among the few acts where piano is the lead instrument. Now don’t worry, they are not yet another Coldplay rip off. These guys do their own thing. And just because it’s piano-driven doesn’t mean every song is a ballad. They bring some great rock and beat without being cheesy or pretentious. It’s music you can think about.

Starter tunes: “Black & Blue”, “Rescue”  Hear them at http://www.purevolume.com/seabird

Future of Forestry
I have talked about this band before on The Smoak House. They are label-mates with Seabird (Credential Recordings). They’re music is ethereal with swirling guitar effects, soaring vocal melodies and high-and-lofty lyrical content. But the underlying, relentless beat that is written into each of their tracks makes for an upbeat sound.

Starter tunes:”Open Wide”, “Sunrising”, “Thinking of You”   Hear them at http://www.purevolume.com/futureofforestry

A Rotterdam November
ARN is one of the most unique bands I have come across in some time. It’s not just their sound though, it’s their biography. They have taken their name from a city who’s heart and center was bombed out and destroyed during WWII and was dubbed “the city without a heart”. Later some designers and architects were charged with rebuilding the heart of the city. “As it stands today, Rotterdam is an old city with a
new heart. This is the analogy for Christians.”

Their sound is a unique strain of alternative that uses guitars, piano, and occasional electronic effects along with World War lyrical imagery to express the ideas driving their songs.

Starter tunes:”Trainwreck”, “Crippling Machine”  Hear them at http://www.purevolume.com/ARNmusic

Project 86
Okay so these guys don’t exactly fit the description of “indie”. They are on the Tooth and Nail label which has become a force to be reckoned with in the music industry. However P86 still has a sound that you won’t hear anywhere else. They began as a typical post-hardcore, but on their latest record, Rival Factions they have morphed into a group that simply writes music that sounds good and lets that take them where it may even if it runs contrary to their previous hardcore work. Just good, straight, loud hard rock.

Starter tune:”Put Your Lips to the TV”  Hear them at http://www.purevolume.com/project86

Verra Cruz
Hailing from the UK, these Brits aren’t quite as stripped down as the Elms, but they are pretty bare-bones. Distorted guitar, bass and drums. What else does a band need to rock? Their style is very American with a dirty blues vintage sound. The singer’s smokey low voice reminds me alot of ZZ Top (ok, I promised I wouldn’t make comparisons). Verra Cruz has a raw, back-to-basics sound. And the lyrics are good too.

Starter tunes: “Not In the Fire”, “How Long for This World?”  Hear them at http://www.verracruz.com/

Edison Glass
I have spoken of Edison Glass before and I just can’t get enough of this band. They are just so dang unique. The lyrical tone is serious yet the music is driving and fun. They have few equals. I couldn’t even make comparisons if I wanted to. Just check them out.

Starter tunes: “Cold Condition”, “Let Go” (this one has a great guitar riff)  Hear them at http://www.purevolume.com/edisonglass

Josh H.

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