(Written by Emma Kelley)
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. – War Zone
Don’t think that Dale Earnhardt Jr. started an indie-pop band – this isn’t the racecar driver. The two gentlemen in Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. have been getting more attention after they released their album The Speed of Things about a year ago this time in 2013. This song embodies their poppy carefree sound that makes you want to ride a bike really fast.
Saint Pepsi – Fall Harder
Still rather new, Saint Pepsi hails from New York and started as a music producer and blogger in 2012. He has released small EPs throughout the year, having a sound described as “liquid disco” and “gibber boogie.” This is a single from his latest EP Fiona Coyne/Fall Harder.
Azealia Banks – Chasing Time
After changing the time of her anticipated comeback roughly twenty times throughout the year- Azaelia is finally back with “Chasing Time.” It has an addictive club beat and shows off not only Banks’s sick rapping skills but her awesome singing skills, too.
Junior Prom – Sheila Put The Knife Down
I heard one second of this song on XRT 93.1 over the summer and immediately typed in whatever lyrics I could recall because it was that good. With electric pop punk sounds, but also a classic rock feel, this song is their most popular single.
KOSMO KAT – An Elegant Punk
KOSMO KAT is a Japanese-American DJ from LA that I found on soundcloud one day. Very mysterious and not much about him/her but “An Elegant Punk” is an electro pop beat with lots of layers that will keep you listening out of sheer interest. Check out their EP on BandCamp for more similar sounds!
Anamanaguchi – Airbrushed
These guys make some serious feel-good happy music. Most of their music is chiptune with an 8bit sound, but also have a garage band nostalgia about them, which probably has to do with the blend of classic electric guitar. “Airbrushed” is purely instrumental and shows off their electric and angsty rocker talents.
Born Ruffians – Hummingbird
In keeping with the theme of songs that make you feel real good, I can’t get the Born Ruffians out of my head. They remind me of being a freshman in high school- ah yes the awkward phases of life. This Canadian rock band released the single “Hummingbird” in 2008 and it’s still a timeless piece.
Stromae – Papaoutai
Shout out to the roomie who went to France over the summer and introduced me to the extremely talented French/Belgian singer and songwriter, Stromae, who makes songs with very powerful messages (once you translate the lyrics into English). This electronic pop song with heavy snare drums gives it an epic sound. He recently showed in Chicago and brought out a huge crowd!
The 1975 – M.O.N.E.Y.
This classic pop-rock boy band from Manchester played at Lollapalooza this year, brought fan girls from around the globe and had every one of those tear-stained fan girls (including myself) raving about the show. “M.O.N.E.Y.” isn’t one of their popular singles but is an addicting song nonetheless. It’s from their first album, The 1975, and what makes it so easy on the ears is the drummer’s intricate rhythms and lead singer’s just-out-of-bed voice.
Weezer – In The Garage
In celebration of their new album coming out, I’m bringing back some old school Weezer. The new album comes out October 7th and these guys just can’t quit. “In The Garage” is a personal favorite that brings me back to the 90s when I was a just a baby rockin’ out in the crib.