Saturday, September 19, 2009

5 More Indie Artists You've Never Heard Of

Once again it’s time for me to carefully select a few musical acts that are relatively unknown to the majority of the public, and then chastise you for not listening to them. If you are interested in any of the artists than just click on their name and it will link you to their website. So dust off your iPod’s and start up your LimeWire while I inform you of five more indie artists you have never heard of.

California born rock quartet Aushua are a band who were well on their way to recognition when they hit a stroke of bad luck. After they had booked an appearance on Last Call with Carson Daly, lead singer Nathan Gammill was jumped and severely beaten by two men outside of a bar in Orange County. Due to Gammill’s injuries the band was forced to cancel their appearance on Daly’s late night show.

Wait, not being on Last Call is a bad thing?

Since then they have been touring consistently, trying to get their music out to a wider audience. Their most recent tour with Nightmare of You brought the band much critical praise for their varied style and gave them some much needed exposure.
Who Do They Sound Like?
Aushua credit both Bob Dylan and The Talking Heads as their influences, but to be honest they don’t sound as folk as I’m sure they want to. They have more of an pop rock sound, similar to a young U2.
Songs to Download:
Since they only have a few EP’s out right now it’s hard to find them in stores, but they are on iTunes (and LimeWire). “Sister Saves,” “In A Way,” and “Tuck” are all good jams, but the best song they have right now is called “Hiding Place.” Download it… I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.

Abandon are a Christian rock band from Texas, a place where most Christians feel more comfortable condemning anything resembling rock music and forming lynch mobs.

The band formed in 2002 by playing worship music at their church, (hiding their love for rock to avoid said lynching). They recently released their first album Searchlights to mostly positive reviews. Unlike most Christian music acts, Abandon have been able to sneak into mainstream radio play by subtly displaying their faith in their work instead of jamming it down our throats.

Unlike SOME people.
Who Do They Sound Like?
Their music and lead singer’s voice sound eerily similar to The Killers, but one song sounds like it was written after listening to a Boyz II Men record. Mostly Killers clones though, only Christian instead of Mormon.
Songs to Download:
“Hold On,” is a great song if you really like The Killers, and would be a great introduction to who Abandon are and how they differ from their mainstream counterparts. But, for the Christian music fans I suggest downloading “Hero.” It’s a strong ballad that cements that they are writing their music for a higher power.

This is one band I can almost guarantee you have never heard of. Why? Consisting of three college kids from West Liberty State University, Chaos Killed’s exposure has been limited at best. Their main source of publicity has been playing local clubs, MySpace, and the occasional air play on The X radio station. But, they have a small, loyal fan base and its growing. Regardless of how you feel about their music, you have to give these guys credit for pursuing their goals. College is a notorious killer of dreams, and many have let their aspirations die for more financially secure careers.

Hitler, for example.
Who Do They Sound Like?
At this point in their careers they are still trying out different styles, so it’s not really fair to pigeon-hole them into any particular sound. If I had to compare them to another act, I’d say they reminded me of early Ataris, Bush, and Green Day minus the liberal propaganda. You can tell that they were influenced by 90’s alternative rock, which makes them unique in today’s market.
Songs to Download:
The song they have been marketing lately is called “Baltimore,” and I have to say that it’s much better than most of the other stuff out there today. The best part is that you can get this song from their MySpace page free of charge, so downloading it won’t send the FBI crashing through your front window.

New Jersey has a habit of churning out great musical acts, and The Gaslight Anthem is no exception. Active since 2005, the made a huge splash on the indie scene in 2007 with their debut album Sink or Swim. Since then they have toured constantly, and even released a second album, The ’59 Sound, to huge critical acclaim. These guys are on the verge of stardom, but something is holding them back. Many speculate that an aged and bitter Bruce Springsteen is keeping these New Jersey natives from breaking through the glass ceiling, but nothing has been confirmed.

*Whimper*…Working on a Dream suuucked…*whimper*
Who Do They Sound Like?
The Gaslight Anthem strongly embraces the Jersey Shore sound, so Bon Jovi, Springsteen, Astronaut Jones, and John Eddie have all influenced them in one way or another, and it shows in their style.
Songs to Download:
Pretty much anything from The ’59 Sound is worth listening to, but if you’re strapped for cash or unable to find all the songs in less reputable ways, download “Great Expectations,” “Casanova, Baby!” and “Old White Lincoln.”

New wave/synth-pop music was thought to have died in the 90’s, but it’s been given an adrenaline shot and kept out of the grave thanks to a new generation of artists who love to experiment with electronic sound. Out of all of these acts, none have embraced the synth-pop scene quite like Plushgun. Utilizing shimmering keyboard sounds with rock and roll guitar licks and sweet drum beats, these Brooklyn natives have taken the internet by storm. The gained prominence when their music was featured on episodes of the web series We Need Girlfriends, and they quickly gained cult status. Since then they have been touring regularly and their music has been featured on MTV’s The Real World.
Who Do They Sound Like?
If The Postal Service had not been created to appease Ben Gibbard’s electronic indie phase, than Plushgun would not exist. While they embody the spirit of Postal Service, most of there songs are upbeat dance tunes as apposed to Gibbard’s electric/emo tracks.
Songs to Download:
Their debut album Pins and Panzers is great, but if you need to sample before committing to a whole record than download “Dancing in a Minefield,” “Union Pool,” and “Just Impolite.” If electric indie isn’t for you, than try their song “Let Me Kiss You Now, (And I’ll Fade Away)” for a song that’s nostalgic, poppy, dance-able, and surprisingly deep.

If you liked these artists, check out a some more indie acts here.

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