Indie Pop

Artist: 
Belle and Sebastian
Label: 
Matador Records

Whoa Belle and Sebastian! So you're probably thinking, "Aww yeah some good ol' classic, soothing, chill, indie pop that'll makes you wanna close your eyes and drift off into dreamland" right? Wrong! Wel.l not completely but I'll get to that.

Sounds Like: 
The Delgados
Sounds Like: 
Sufjan Stevens (The slower tracks like "Perfect Couples"
Name: 
Ali Shareef
Date Reviewed: 
02/04/2015
Artist: 
Light Club
Label: 
Self-released

Self-described as "soulful indie pop," Light Club's debut EP is full of catchy songs and wistful lyrics. Gabe Mouer, who based his newest solo project Light Club in Oregon, has the ability to become as big as The 1975 based on the few songs I've heard from this record. I can see the opening track, "What We Found", garnering as much popularity as its contempory standouts in the same genre. It reminds me of recently popular indie pop tracks such as "Cardiac Arrest" by Bad Suns and "Girls" by The 1975.

Sounds Like: 
The 1975
Sounds Like: 
Walk the Moon
Sounds Like: 
Bad Suns
Name: 
Emily Beiser
Date Reviewed: 
02/01/2015
Artist: 
Coasts
Label: 
Capitol Records

The first time I listened to this album, I thought it sounded a lot like Bad Suns. A further Google search of the band Coasts revealed that they are currently on tour with Bad Suns. Conclusion: if you like Bad Suns, you’ll probably also enjoy this album. That being said, this album is straight up indie-alt-pop. While the sound is decent, and well-produced, I wish there was something more that set it apart from every other indie-pop album out there.

Sounds Like: 
Bad Suns
Sounds Like: 
Bastille
Name: 
Samantha Fung
Date Reviewed: 
02/01/2015
Artist: 
Is Tropical
Label: 
Axis Mundi Records

This two-track single from Is Tropical is exactly what I would expect from a smaller indie pop group in 2014, which doesn't mean its a bad thing. "Crawl" is almost jazzy, with a really dirty beat, some experimental synth, and smooth female vocals. "On My Way" belongs on the soundtrack for Drive--kind of new wave, atmospheric, and dreamy. The collection is small but potent. It's brooding but not necessarily melancholy, technically proficient, and highly recommended.

Sounds Like: 
Lykke Li
Sounds Like: 
"Real Hero" by College
Name: 
Tatum Schranz
Date Reviewed: 
12/10/2014
Artist: 
Frontier Ruckus
Label: 
Quite Scientific Records

Two thumbs up from DJ Kira Kat here! Michigan folk-rock band, Frontier Ruckus, has delivered us a dynamic album that is somehow both simple and exciting at the same time, and has the potential to compliment any alt or variety show that is looking for a unique musical experience. With its experimental melodies and compelling lyrics, Sitcom Afterlife is an incredibly strong, influential album. The record is mostly upbeat but seems to slow things down or turn things a bit darker at the perfect moments.

Sounds Like: 
GROUPLOVE, if lead singer Christian didn't scream as much and made softer music
Name: 
Kira Baum
Date Reviewed: 
12/01/2014
Artist: 
Laura Welsh
Label: 
Island Records

For such an adorable, small woman, Laura Welsh has a powerful voice that will blow your mind. The talented singer/songwriter, who is mostly known for her featured vocals on Gorgon City's track, "Here For You," released this incredibly creative EP that utilizes complex sounds to complement her beautiful, booming voice. Each song is very slow, solumn, and carries a lot of heavy feelings that will leave you deep in thought for a while.

Sounds Like: 
Adele
Sounds Like: 
Florence + the Machine
Name: 
Kira Baum
Date Reviewed: 
11/24/2014
Artist: 
Elisa Ambrogio
Label: 
Drag City

The Immortalist is the album debut of Magik Markers' vocalist Elisa Ambrogio. On this CD you'll find a lot of variety: there are some sweeter, simpler pop tunes but also some darker, wandering, noisey gestures. Overall, I'd call this album weird (and not in a bad way.) If you've ever listened to Magik Markers, then you'll know what I mean, but I'll try to make it make sense.

Sounds Like: 
The Casket Girls
Sounds Like: 
Mazzy Star
Sounds Like: 
Karen O
Sounds Like: 
Damon & Naomi
Name: 
Jakub Safar
Date Reviewed: 
11/17/2014
Artist: 
Various
Label: 
Topshelf Records

Topshelf Records is here with its 2014 label sampler, and with it comes a whole lotta sweet alt tunes. From emo-revival bands like Empire! Empire! (I Was a Lonely Estate) and The World is a Beautiful Place and I am No Longer Afraid to Die, to more indie pop groups and solo artists like Wild Ones and Tancred, this sampler has 25 songs to please the alt music palate. 

Sounds Like: 
Topshelf Records
Name: 
Katie Fapp
Date Reviewed: 
11/14/2014
Artist: 
Rocket 3
Label: 
NONE

Rocket 3's sound is definitely appealing to teenage girls, which is weird because the band is 2/3 male and 3/3 middle-aged. If I were just looking at a picture of them, I would not have expected them to sound like La Sera and the Dum Dum Girls, but they do. They encapsulate that sound of a cutesy girl who just wants to hang out by the pool and soak up the rays while gossiping with her girlfriends about boys. This album is just the right combination of aggressive and poppy, with bouncy yet grungy chord progressions and alternatingly dark and bubbly female vocals.

Sounds Like: 
La Sera
Sounds Like: 
Dum Dum Girls
Name: 
Molly Ragan
Date Reviewed: 
11/12/2014
Artist: 
Stone Cold Fox
Label: 
Self-released

From the first note, I was intrigued by this album. The vocals and some of the guitars reminded me of the 1975, but Stone Cold Fox are definitely more like the cooler, wiser older brother to the 1975.

Sounds Like: 
The 1975
Sounds Like: 
The National
Name: 
Katie Fapp
Date Reviewed: 
11/10/2014