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 new music from The National, Manchester Orchestra, Gorillaz, Wednesday, and more.
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Shame — Food For Worms
On “Yankees,” Eddie Green deadpans: “When you’re down / You bring me down / And that is love, so you say.” The song is a cathartic whirlwind of poignant post-punk. It’s a vulnerable moment, followed by the explosive, abstract “Alibis.” Food For Worms takes the listener’s hand, dragging them through the highs and the lows with no choice but to be sucked in.
Miss Grit — Follow The Cyborg
It’s hard to describe the music of Miss Grit, but she did it pretty well in our interview with her about her new album Follow The Cyborg: “Calculated, reserved, droplet, butterfly.” On the jittery “Lain (phone clone)”, she sings: “And what’s the point of being so profound / When all I’ll be is contained in this so vague membrane.” Casual revelations are scattered across the ten songs against sprawling sonic backgrounds.
Gorillaz — Cracker Island
Cracker Island, the highly anticipated new album by Gorillaz, is finally out. The record is packed with highlights, such as a posthumous feature from the late Trugoy of De La Soul on “Crocadillaz” as well as the Bad Bunny collaboration on “Tormenta.” From Snapchat lenses to immersive city experiences, Cracker Island is an extravagant release.
Webbed Wing — Right After I Smoke This…
Right After I Smoke This… is a surprise EP from Webbed Wing, the project of Taylor Madison from cult-followed band Superheaven. The three songs are an endearing dose of vulnerable alt-rock. It tracks the intense swings of existence, contemplating pain and isolation on the twangy “Sure Could Use A Friend” and exploding with temporary energy on the grunge supernova “I’m Feelin Alive.”
Wednesday — “Bath County”
“I can walk on water / I can raise the dead,” Karly Hartzman sings, opening the haunting new Wednesday track “Bath County.” It builds quickly into a hypnotizing, heavy whirlwind of heady guitars while Hartzman’s refrain resonates: “Every daughter of God / Has a little bad luck sometimes.” One second, she’s watching an overdose in a parking lot; the next, she’s listening to Drive-By Truckers on the radio. Life is just scraps of weirdness collaged together.
Slow Pulp — “Cramps”
Slow Pulp’s brand of indie rock is inexplicably nostalgic and familiar, making their 2020 album Moveys a memorable collection of songs. Off the bat, “Cramps” is louder than they usually get; the guitars lurch forward with untrammeled force and Emily Massey’s vocals elevate the song into a meaningful place: “I’ll take anything / That you wanna give / But I want everything.”
Feeble Little Horse — “Tin Man”
Along with the release of their new single “Tin Man,” Feeble Little Horse have announced their highly anticipated debut Girl With Fish. This follows the scattering of idiosyncratic songs, hooking listeners in with loads of distortion and unpredictability. “Tin Man” continues this theme, rocking back and forth on playful riffs, bursting with ardently weird noise. They cite both A Country Western and Slint as influences, of course.
The National — “New Order T-Shirt”
The National have shared another taste of their new album First Two Pages Of Frankenstein. “New Order T-Shirt” is a portrait of a person from the past: “I keep what I can of you / Split second glimpses and snapshots and sounds / You in my New Order t-shirt / Holding a cat and a glass of beer,” Matt Berninger recollects, a vivid image in a sea of memories, flowing through this song beautifully.
Chvrches — “Over”
Chvrches made their grand comeback with the infectious “Over,” an ’80s-influenced anthem that grapples with sexism: “I try my best to turn down the noise / And I tell myself that boys will be boys / It’s getting harder to breathe / So, baby, put me to sleep / Till it gets better.” It’s a blazing return.
Manchester Orchestra — “Capital Karma”
The Valley Of Vision is the newest project of Manchester Orchestra. Not only is it their next album, but it’s their virtual reality short film that will be accompanying the music. “Capital Karma” is the first taste of it, and it’s an evocative, poignant piano ballad. Andy Hull’s vocals are gut-wrenching as he sings, “All I wanna do is wait / For you.”
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.