The best, undiscovered, indie bands today

This is my own personal list, shown in preference order, of the best bands out there that are still awaiting to get a good contract. I only include bands that are independent, and have fewer than 50,000 “friends” on their myspace page (if that’s an indication of anything). “Band of Horses” would have been in this list too if their just-last-night appearance on Letterman’s show didn’t skyrocket them on myspace/iTunes. They are stars already with their recent second album. I don’t think that their label, SubPop (49% owned by Warner), has seen such a big hit since the days they signed Nirvana.

1. Drist
Of course, I love the Drist. They truly rock. Tyson’s lovely lyrics and Brian’s amazing music just make me wanna move my head up and down all day. I love most of their songs, but possibly my favorites are their “Stripped” cover and “Surfacing”. Its melody hits a nerve with me. Drist became known after two of their songs were included in the “Guitar Hero” video game and since then their albums sell well via CDBaby too (both albums are on the top-15 of their “hard rock” category for years now). The band has shared with me some samples of their new album, and they sound just amazing!

1b. Dolorata
All-women hard rock band, “The Keys” is one of the coolest songs ever.

2. Rantings of Eva
Aaaah… “Bright Side”. What a killer song that is? It sends shivers up and down my spine, as the lyrics mention. These guys can have a huge future if they get a good contract. Kinda like Coldplay. Their new album will be out soon.

3. Midlake
The most well-known band in this list. This is my favorite kind of music: soothing alt.rock, just like Fleetwood Mac. “Roscoe” and “Head Home” are their best songs.

4. Red Letter Agent
I found out about these guys by following a link from “Rantings of Eva’s” myspace page. They sound pretty similar (separated at birth?), and they are just as good. I am looking forward to listen to more of their work. I think their best so far is “A World Awake”.

5. The Coral Sea
I love this kind of music. Soothing music that is. “In This Moment’s Time” and “Ancient Modern People” are their best songs although “Look at Her Face” is popular too. A new album arrives this coming spring (they said)…

6. Faunts
More soothing alt.rock music. Very atmospheric music, it just carries me away, to another place. All their three best songs are given for free by either their site or their label’s site. “Memories of places we’ve never been” is possibly their best. They have a new EP coming out, their label emailed me the other day.

7. Cold Hot Crash
From the Bay Area, great rock music, the local radio plays them quite a bit. My favorite song of their is “They Keep Calling”, although “Dividing Up Circles” is their most well known song.

8. Asobi Seksu
I absolutely love their psychedelic pop-rock sound. The singer’s voice is amazing too. “Thursday” and “Sooner” are their best songs. Many of their songs can be found for a free, legal, download at their site, their label’s site and eMusic.

9. RadioFix
Good hard rock. If you like a mix of classic, alternative and a pinch of country rock, this is for you. “Dogs of Night” is their best song.

10. Nemesea
Evanescence-like music. Most of the songs on their album are good.

11. Wiretree
Indie Pop at its best. Each one of the album‘s songs are catchy.

12. The A-Sides
Another good group. Best song is “Sidewalk Chalk” in my opinion.

13. Starlight Mints
A group that plays more than one kinds of music. Their best is “Inside of Me” and you can download it legally from their label’s site.

14. We Shot the Moon
From the ashes of “Waking Ashland”, just a few months ago, the “We Shot The Moon” were born. I mostly like “The Water’s Edge” song. They are very new, but they are coming to iTunes in a few days (they said).

15. Black Days Down
Hard rock. Sounds a bit like Nickelback. But just better. Hehehe…

16. The West Exit
If you like a mix of Jamiroquai & Sade-like music, this one is for you. Very good music, great talent. Not the kind of music for everyone, but definitely one of the best groups in that musical area. All their songs are free either via their site or Magnatune.

17. Angie Mattson
Kinda like Fiona Apple, but more approachable. Writes her own music, performs it, and she looks stunning too.

And finally, all six bands from this label. They seem to be having signed up the best of the best — and it’s possibly not a coincidence, as while they classify themselves as indie, they are owned by EMI. Many of these small supposedly indie labels are actually owned by the majors, who wait to see which bands have what it takes before they sign them on with a big contract (kinda like sports teams have sub-teams with younger athletes that they then promote to the pro club)! Anyways, it’s too bad that the best band at this label was recently robbed: “in Orlando FL, On Oct 7th, between 11 and 12pm, the Edison Glass van was broken into. They broke through the window and stole all the money we made for the tour, laptops, i-pods, GPS, bags and other personal items. The total loss EG took is estimated $8,000.” Let me just say this: never leave money in the car.


memsom wrote on October 20th, 2007 at 5:19 PM PST:


Kerbdog Mexican Wave will appeal to you. Dry Riser and Dummy Crusher are from their first record and are heavier. All four songsa were singles.

Therapy? Screamager is the best track they have listed.

Pet Lamb Though, none of the songs they have here are ones I know too well. Their Album “Sweaty Handshake” is really, reaaly cool. Real garage music. “Tenderness” is more accessable and more Indy.

Mexican Pets are really cool.

Wilt are what Kerbdog became after their bass player left. They are more mainstream. Be careful though, Wilt is the name of a few bands. This one is Irish and from Dublin.

Hundred Reasons – I really like their earlier stuff. As such, “Kill your own” is the track to listen to.

The Mars Volta good trippy Psychdelic prog rock.

Gang of Four the band that the early Chilli Peppers stole their sound from. Flea went on record saying as much.

The Pixies who are one of the most ripped off alt-rock bands ever to exist.

Shameless plug – Psyracuse Pyramid my band. We are not togetehr any more. I was never really 100% in to the music, but what the heck, it’ll give you something to tear in to 😉 I think you will like “Connect”. You might like the others, dunno. Yes, the vocals are not right on most of the recordings. I dunno, the singer just never caught his voice well on the recordings.

This is the admin speaking...
Eugenia wrote on October 21st, 2007 at 10:44 AM PST:

Yeah, “Connect” is really nice. That’s the kind of stuff I like indeed.

Tbone wrote on October 29th, 2007 at 8:03 PM PST:

Okkervil River. If you get to see them live the cds just aren’t the same. they’ve been around for a while so they have some great songs- for real, westfall, love to a monster, unless it’s kicks… they’re all good.

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