Indie music has grown to include so much. It’s not just music that is released on independent labels, but speaks to an aesthetic that deviates from the norm and follows its own weirdo heart. It can come in the form of rock music, pop, or folk. In a sense, it says as much about the people that are drawn to it as it does about the people that make it.
Every week, Uproxx is rounding up the best new indie music from the past seven days. This week we got a new track from Grimes, the latest holiday single from Phoebe Bridgers, and the announcement of the debut Wet Leg record. Check out the rest of the best new indie music below.
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Grimes – “Player Of Games”
Grimes has been slowly but surely rolling out new music over the last few months, including a track called “Love.” Now, it appears that she is launching a new musical era with the release of “Player Of Games,” a club-ready new single that builds to a cathartic chorus. The song arrived along with a cryptic tweet claiming “BOOK 1 era begins,” so expect more new music soon.
Phoebe Bridgers – “Day After Tomorrow” (Tom Waits cover)
In what has become an (almost) annual tradition, Phoebe Bridgers has released a holiday-themed song in the form of a rendition of Tom Waits’ “Day After Tomorrow.” Where the original number was a solo acoustic affair, Bridgers transposed the guitar melodies onto piano and added layers of strings and additional vocals to give the song a whole new dimension. All proceeds from the sale of the track on Bandcamp will go to The International Institute of Los Angeles, providing refugees, immigrants, and survivors of human trafficking with the skills, abilities, and resources they need to become self-sufficient and start their new lives in Southern California.
The National – “Somebody Desperate”
Earlier this year, Aaron and Bryce Dessner announced they were composing the score for the new Peter Dinklage film, Cyrano, and now the duo has tapped in with the remainder of their band The National for a new original song. “Somebody Desperate” opens with a wandering piano line and Matt Berninger’s warm vocals, before layers of strings add more cinematic depth to the track, making for a welcome return for the beloved band that hasn’t released original studio music since 2019’s I Am Easy To Find.
The Regrettes – “You’re So F***ing Pretty”
With their forthcoming third album coming soon, The Regrettes have delivered another new track. “You’re So F***ing Pretty” is a slow, meditative track that serves an unabashed queer anthem about coming to terms with one’s sexuality. Lydia Night said in a statement that the song is “the first time I’ve ever written directly about a girl I had a crush on, and it took me a while for me to even allow my brain to accept the fact that I’m bisexual.”
Wet Leg – “Too Late Now”
After songs like “Wet Dream” and “Chaise Longue” caught the ears of critics and fans this year, Isle Of Wight duo Wet Leg are finally prepping their proper full-length debut, due for release in April of next year. “Too Late Now” is one of two new singles that preview the new self-titled album, which features what Adrian Spinelli described for Uproxx as “a melodious guitar lick running through it, alongside throbbing bass that takes shape like songs from fellow British post-punks Dry Cleaning and Goat Girl.”
Wild Pink – “Florida”
Wild Pink released one of the best albums of the year with A Billion Little Lights, but John Ross isn’t slowing down anytime soon. The new song “Florida” is another beautiful track about the strange juxtaposition of Florida’s natural beauty along with its stigma of human miscreants. It’s what Adrian Spinelli described for Uproxx as “a glistening track with pedal steel, acoustic strums, lovely keys, and a driving thump that flashes the new-age folk that the band has totally nailed.”
Young Guv – “Only Wanna See U Tonight”
After recently announcing his forthcoming double album Guv III & IV, Ben Cook has rolled out another taste of what we can expect from the effort. “Only Wanna See U Tonight” is another ’90s-indebted alt-rocker with a gorgeous chorus that is reminiscent of Gin Blossoms. It’s a song that Cook claims came together in only a few hours, written remotely via WhatsApp with Tommy The Major during the height of the quarantine lockdown last year.
Carly Cosgrove – “Munck”
Quick note before we get into it — the singer of this band is not, in fact, named Carly. Instead, Carly Cosgrove takes its name from a combination of the titular character and actor of the Nickelodeon show iCarly. Ok, now that that’s out of the way, the lead single from this Philadelphia trio’s as-yet-untitled debut album hearkens back to the midwestern emo scene of the early 2010’s with clean open-tuned guitars that incorporate some tapping, and melodic vocals that sometimes break into harsher sections. It evokes bands like Brave Bird and Oliver Houston, which is a real sweet spot for this writer.
String Machine – “Gales Of Worry”
There aren’t enough bands these days with seven members. Lucky for us, Pittsburgh’s String Machine comes to us in full form with seven members that come together to reveal the fullest sounds and fleshed-out songs. The group’s forthcoming album Hallelujah Hell Yeah is due in February, but “Gales Of Worry” is a song that feels like it is continuing to evolve as you continue to listen. Along with the rest of the songs on Hallelujah Hell Yeah, “Gales Of Worry” serves as a snapshot into the lives of its songwriters, allowing listeners to feel like another member of the group.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.