40 new artists you need to hear in May
Everyone loves to jam out to their favorite artists and classic hits, but let’s not forget about all the fresh talent constantly popping up around the world. From pop and indie to punk and post-hardcore, there’s always a new name in music waiting to be heard.
We know there are a lot of tracks to sift through, so we’re here to help. Each month, we gather the best new releases from the past month by artists you may not know and put them all in one place. Check out what music you might have missed in April below to stay up to date on new music. Who knows? You just may find your next favorite band.
Band Of Silver – “Looking For A Friend”
For fans of: Panic! At The Disco, Lesibu Grand, littleDNGR
Band Of Silver share an “autobiographical” piece with “Looking For A Friend.” The trio mix synth waves with hopeful lyrics to create a cheery sound. Singer Avery Silvernagel says the song’s lyrics are inspired by the times when she would go out to clubs to meet new people. “I thought I would be the outsider with everyone having their social circles already established and all around more put together than I was,” Silvernagel says. “Instead I realized most of the people I met felt the same way I did." The track follows “Are We Are We Not” and is the band’s second single since the 2020 release of their debut EP, Always.
Blossom Reynolds – “The Feelin’’
For fans of: Neck Deep, Real Friends, Trash Boat
Blossom Reynolds draws from the history of classic emo for “The Feelin.” Inspired by bands such as blink-182 and the Wonder Years and taking cues from modern artists such as lil aaron and MOD SUN, Reynolds combines elements from different pop-punk eras to channel his thoughts using energetic guitars and cheery chords. “It honestly feels therapeutic to me in a sense,” he says. “It's one of my favorite songs I've ever written because I really feel like it describes exactly how I feel when I start overthinking too much and anxiety starts getting the best of me. I get that ‘feeling.’” The track is Reynold’s fourth release this year and follows previous singles “The High Life” featuring Curtains and “Killin Time.”
boyband – “fooly cooly”
For fans of: LiL Lotus, POORSTACY, dying in designer
Inspired by Mamimi Samejima from Kazuya Tsurumaki’s FLCL, boyband shares his second anime-inspired track with “fooly cooly.” He first explored using anime storylines with the release of his debut single “death note,” featuring Good Charlotte’s Billy Martin, in 2020. Guitar-driven choruses propel each verse and tell the character’s story arc through intricate lines and soft beats. “fooly cooly” is boyband’s first track since the release of the deluxe edition of his debut album, alone in a boyband.
Cake Pop – “Black Rum”
For fans of: girl_irl, six impala, Fraxiom
Cake Pop share their first single since 2016’ “Sticky Fingers” with the electro-pop groove “Black Rum.” Led by 100 gecs’ Dylan Brady, the eclectic eight-piece use pop experimentation to create bright tunes. Synth beats provide the foundation for “Black Rum” as Brady, Ravenna Golden and Lewis Grant sing their respective verses. The track will be featured on the band’s upcoming release, Cake Pop 2, out April 30 via Mad Decent.
Chiiild – “Awake” (feat. Mahalia)
For fans of: Dijon, LOONY, Emotional Oranges
With the second single off his upcoming album, Chiiild (Yonatan “Yoni” Ayal) settles into a slow-moving groove. As relaxing as it is sensual, “Awake” features alluring vocals from Ayal and Jamaican-British singer Mahalia. Sweet violins decorate the track alongside steady beats and airy vocalizations. The track follows Ayal’s earlier release “Sleepwalking” and will be featured on his forthcoming debut LP, Hope For Sale.
CRYPTA – “From The Ashes”
For fans of: Chelsea Grin, Suicide Silence, Thy Art Is Murder
Deathcore quartet CRYPTA tell the tale of the phoenix and how it rises “From The Ashes” with hard-hitting screams and lyrics. “[‘From The Ashes’] talks about the ever-changing cycles of life, the many endings and beginnings we have to go through,” lead singer/bassist Fernanda Lira says. “[The song is] about how many old versions of ourselves need to figuratively die in order for us to keep growing and evolving as human beings and, finally, about building resilience to endure all these rebirths." The Brazilian/Dutch outfit rip through each chorus with fervor via quick-moving drums and intricate riffs. Echoes Of The Soul drops June 11 and is available to preorder via Napalm Records.
CVLT OV THE SVN – “Hellbound”
For fans of: Lord Of The Lost, Raven Black, Belzebubs
Delivering melodic stylings paired with gritty harmonies, CVLT OV THE SVN creates captivating hooks and riffs with “Hellbound.” Choosing to remain anonymous, the Finnish artist is inspired by horror films such as The Exorcist and takes listeners to dark corners that capture the deepest parts of his mind. “Hellbound” will be featured on CVLT OV THE SVN’s debut LP, We Are The Dragon, out May 7 and available to preorder via Napalm Records.
Das Beat – “Bubble”
For fans of: Small Black, Blackbird Blackbird, Les Sins
Composed of Eddie Rabenberger and Blue Hawaii’s Alex “Agor” Kerby, Das Beat shared their debut single, “Bubble.” With strong ’80s synths, the upbeat dance track features vintage drum machines, which drive the track through each airy verse. Trance-like waves flow between each lyric toward an energetic, and fittingly bubbly, finale. The song will be included on the duo’s upcoming EP, Identität, due out June 4 via Arbutus Records.
Don’t Believe In Ghosts – “Put Your Head Back”
For fans of: Friday Pilots Club, Deal Casino, Alke
Don’t Believe In Ghosts share an optimistic view on life with their latest release, “Put Your Head Back.” Intent on making others feel hopeful, the band deliver head-swaying rhythms and drum hits packaged into a sweet pop tune. The track was written during the pandemic as hardship and tragedy seemed to take over vocalist Steven Nathan’s life. “There were a few months there where I couldn’t even lift myself up anymore,” he says. “It became very hard to focus. ‘Put Your Head Back’ is a defiant statement about no longer going down that path and realigning who you are and where you are going.” The track will be featured on the group’s second LP, Solutions, which drops May 14 via Imagen Records/ADA Warner.
Felicity – “Hit And Run”
For fans of: Brave New World, DAMN NATION, Arrows In Action
Rock quinet Felicity make their Adventure Cat Records debut with a hardcore anthem, “Hit And Run.” Featuring raging screams and memorable choruses, the band rip through each chord and cadence with fervor. Directed by Sean Maple, the track’s accompanying music video features lead vocalist Damien Fagiolino kicking it with a ghost between shots of the entire band as they tear through the song. “Hit And Run” is the band’s second release since their Old Habits EP dropped in 2020 and follows a cover of Harry Styles’ “Watermelon Sugar.”
Forever X2 – “Tape Deck”
For fans of: Third Eye Blind, Pavement, Beck
Channeling ’90s synthwave, Forever X2 (Peter Verdell) shares his third single of 2021 with “Tape Deck.” Utilizing electronic beats, the singer delivers gritty synths alongside polished vocals to create a memorable sound fitting for all of your summer playlists. The track follows “Everyone Is Famous,” which was co-written alongside drummer Nate Lotz (Halsey, All American Rejects). “Tape Deck” will also be featured on his forthcoming, self-produced album, Teen Adjacent.
Glaare – “For Sale”
For fans of: Death Bells, Fearing, Black Mare
Glaare share dark vibes accompanied by hypnotic vocals in “For Sale.” Featured on the quartet's latest LP, Your Hellbound Heart, the track’s upbeat rhythms and synths complement the accompanying grunge vibes. “The narrative is essentially a conversation with your shadow, where you’re ridiculing your actions and mutilating yourself by failing to understand the nature of your ego,” drummer Brandon Pierce says. “Having a rigid core of beliefs that you take as doctrine and what happens when you break them. The judgment and lack of ability to reconcile with yourself.” Your Hellbound Heart dropped April 30 and can be streamed and bought via Weyrd Son Records (Europe) and Dune Altar (U.S.).
Greentea Peng – “Kali V2”
Inspired by the Hindu goddess Kali Ma, Greentea Peng takes listeners to a wonderland of mesmerizing beats with her latest single, “Kali V2.” She delivers each line with sincerity, the repeating backbeat accenting her words. Alongside the song, the visual takes viewers through a city drowned in red, with the occasional white light highlighting the singer. The track will be featured on her upcoming LP, MAN MADE, due June 4 via AMF RECORDS and available for preorder here.
HIRAES – “Under Fire”
For fans of: Arch Enemy, Amon Amarth, In Flames
With the first single off their upcoming LP, HIRAES introduce themselves with hardcore riffs and screams in “Under Fire.” Utilizing contrasting breaks and deep lyrics, the German quintet’s new track sets the stage for their upcoming releases. “Our debut album, Solitary, is the result of the collaboration of five musicians who burn with passion for melodic death metal,” the band say. “Rounded off by stunning sound, refined at Fascination Street Studios under the direction of Jens Bogren and [with] strong artwork by Costin Chioreanu, we are really more than satisfied with our first album.” Solitary drops June 25 via Napalm Records.
Holy Wars – “TV Dinner”
For fans of: The Haunt, Troi Irons, BONES UK
Dropping a music video inspired by a 1950s Swanson commercial, Holy Wars deliver a feminist punk-rock anthem that employs raging guitar riffs and attitude. With “TV Dinner,” the duo fight back against the misogyny that still plagues society by utilizing in-your-face lyrics that linger in your mind long after the last note. The track follows “Little Godz” as the second single off their upcoming debut album, Eat It Up/Spit It Out.
KiNG MALA – “She Calls Me Daddy”
For fans of: Vesperteen, Clover The Girl, the Millennial Club
KiNG MALA shares her own experiences of men trying to steal her partner from her with “She Calls Me Daddy.” Prior to its release, the track went viral on TikTok, garnering hundreds of thousands of views when she introduced it on the app. The track begins with a lone guitar, building to the chorus with percussive instruments and the occasional trumpet blare. The alt-pop singer says she hopes the track will help others obtain self-acceptance. “The whole ‘I’m gonna steal your girlfriend’ vibe was so cool to play around with,” she says. “But in all seriousness, I really just want to normalize queer relationships and empower womxn and nonbinary folks and make them feel badass.”
Laraw – “This Is How I Lost My Friends”
Influenced by the past year of isolation due to the pandemic, Montreal’s Laraw shares a self-reflective track composed of vibrant harmonies and honesty. With uptempo grooves, “This Is How I Lost My Friends” relays the singer's thoughts on loneliness by using reverberating bass hits accompanied by bright synths. “‘What the fuck is wrong with me?’ is a question I ask myself a lot, but the answer is simple: nothing,” she says. “I’m just one of those people who don’t talk when they don’t know what to say. It doesn’t mean I don't care. I care a lot. I'm just afraid to say the wrong thing or stress others out.” The track is Laraw’s first release of the year and follows her 2020 single, “Breakup Tutorial_V2.”
Lecx Stacy – “Papaya”
For fans of: Donnie Dawson, DEAR-GOD, THE BLOSSOM
Lecx Stacy shares an intense short film about some of his own personal experiences with “Papaya.” Directed by Timmy Harn, the artist focuses on how Filipino Americans have been pressured to assimilate to American culture, even if it meant trying to lighten their skin using papaya soaps. The film’s backtrack features dark synths and guitars, highlighting the desperation of Stacy’s words alongside the imagery itself. The track will be included on his forthcoming album, Bundok, release date to be announced.
LoveLeo – “BUZZCUT” (feat. blackwinterwells)
For fans of: I DONT KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME, mxmtoon, Wallows
LoveLeo (Leo Reilly) teamed up with blackwinterwells for a trip of wavy rhythms. Simple in its composition, “BUZZCUT” doesn’t need extravagant instrumental backings to stand out. With looping synth riffs and light vocals, the track captivates listeners with each verse and chorus. “BUZZCUT” is Reilly’s first release since his 2020 EP, LOOK AT THIS MESS IVE MADE, dropped last summer.
M.Byrd – “Morning Sun”
For fans of: Dekker, Emil Landman, AVEC
M.Byrd melds swaying instrumentals with relaxing melodies to craft “MORNING SUN.” Beginning with soft guitar pickings, the track slowly rises into choruses filled with light drum hits and echoing vocals. "‘Morning Sun’ has become a kind of morning mantra for me,” the artist says. “The idea came to me a few years ago in the morning right after I got up, and it came back to me subsequently over and over again, like an entry into meditation, until I finally recorded it and arranged it into form." The song is his second single and follows his 2020 debut hit, “Mountain.”
Marzz – “Cleopatra”
For fans of: VanJess, Alycia Bella, Dee Gatti
Marzz drops hip-hop beats engulfed in emotion with her latest single, “Cleopatra.” Produced by Timbaland, the song’s backtrack loops through each verse until a dramatic time and rhythm change completely moves the listener into a smooth R&B sound. The accompanying music video shows Marzz in a graffitied skatepark, recalling a relationship she once held dear. “Cleopatra” is the latest in a string of singles following “So Frequently” and “Feelin’ Me.”
Monument Of A Memory – “Seeking Somewhere”
For fans of: Thousand Below, If I Were You, Alazka
Produced with Ice Nine Kills guitarist Ricky Armellino (VEIL OF MAYA, Currents), Monument Of A Memory’s “Seeking Somewhere” shows what it feels like to be in a toxic relationship. The track provides hardcore riffage and palpable emotion as the band play through each deep progression and deliver each scream. Lead vocalist/drummer Dylan Newhouse says the music video is a direct representation of the meaning behind the track. “It shows the toxicity of the relationship, and as the song progresses, we continue to see how the protagonist cannot seem to move on no matter how much this person is hurting them,” he says. “It’s supposed to be a metaphor to show that no matter how much she seems to hurt him, she’ll always be the one that’s too hard to walk away from.” “Seeking Somewhere” is the group's third single since their 2018 EP, Ex-Mortis, and follows 2019’s acoustic rendition of “Elizabeth.”
Mustafa – “Ali”
For fans of: Q, Pip Millett, Joesef
Mustafa (Ahmed)’s second single of the year is a touching song about loss and remembrance. Also going by Mustafa The Poet, Ahmed has worked with artists like The Weeknd (“Attention”) and Camila Cabello (“She Loves Control.”) Opening with light strings, “Ali” takes listeners on a journey made up of soft vocals and emotional lyrics. With the track, the singer also released a self-directed visual that shares views of his neighborhood, friends and life. It follows Ahmed's previous releases “Stay Alive” and “Air Forces.” “Ali” will be featured on his upcoming debut, When Smoke Rises, out May 28 via Regent Park Songs.
Never Enough – “Into The Blur”
For fans of: Dayseeker, Too Close To Touch, Makari
Post-hardcore soloist Never Enough (Nick Bailey) released his debut single with a personal track, “Into The Blur.” Completely self-produced and mastered by the Browning’s Austin Coupe, the track reflects on how relationships change throughout our lives through intense chord progressions and relatable choruses. “Life and relationships can change in ways we may not expect or even want, but it is inevitable,” he says. “'Into The Blur' deals with the distance we often feel from those we love or people who were once a larger part of our lives.”
Never Loved – “On & On It Goes”
For fans of: Super Whatevr, Makeout, Broadside
Alongside the announcement of their upcoming record, Never Loved dropped a new single and music video, “On & On It Goes.” With upbeat riffs and occasional synths, the pop-punk trio build energetic choruses on top of tight progressions and gang vocals. The track will be featured on the band’s upcoming full-length, Over It, which drops May 14 via Equal Vision Records. The LP follows their 2019 self-titled EP and was created with multi-platinum producer Matt Squire (Against The Current, Underoath) in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
Noah Cunane – “F*CK ABOUT IT”
For fans of: Machine Gun Kelly, contradash, No Love For The Middle Child
Noah Cunane shares a new pop-punk breakup anthem with “F*CK ABOUT IT.” With lively beats backing him up, the singer delivers an honest track about unhealthy relationships. “We just wanted to make a toxic song for when you're in a super-toxic relationship, where whenever you have problems, you know that you're toxic and just accept that it's messed up,” Cunane says. “This is probably one of the most punk songs I made. It feels so good to completely just let loose and pull out all my punk roots and put it into a song.” The track will be featured on his upcoming EP with previous singles “BOY WITH A BROKEN HEART” featuring Lonr. and Jutes and “Vampire.”
oogie – “try”
oogie introduces himself with smooth rhythms and quick lines in his first single, “try.” With a steady beat behind him, the South London artist touches on friendships and how they change from childhood to adulthood. Directed by Henry Croston, the music video gives listeners a deeper look into oogie’s inspirations for the track. “try” is featured on his debut project, somehow it makes sense, which is meant to provide a look at the rapper’s life growing up and his personal experiences. The LP is available now via Trapdoor Records.
Paris Texas – “FORCE OF HABIT”
For fans of: 99 Neighbors, THE BLOSSOM, Jean Dawson
Paris Texas deliver another cinematic music video with “FORCE OF HABIT.” The track follows previous singles “SITUATIONS” and “HEAVY METAL,” which boast vivid storytelling. Easygoing beats lead the duo through each line and progression, interrupted with various breaks and rhythm changes. The accompanying visual shows the two artists as they go about their day, along with some of the situations they experience. The track will be included on Paris Texas’ upcoming album, BOY ANONYMOUS, which drops May 14.
Pom Pom Squad – “Head Cheerleader”
For fans of: Snarls, Ratboys, illuminati hotties
Striving for authenticity and rejecting social expectations, Pom Pom Squad take a step toward finding themselves in “Head Cheerleader.” Using tight riffs, the group deliver a relatable indie-rock track encapsulating the feelings of wanting to fit in but also just be yourself. “[It] was an effort to lean into the overarching trope that makes Pom Pom Squad what it is, almost like parodying myself,” singer Mia Berrin says. “This song feels like a celebration of the discomfort that comes with stepping into your new skin—your own power.” The track will be featured on their upcoming LP, Death Of A Cheerleader, out June 25 via City Slang Records.
Rachel Eckroth – “You’re The Only Thing”
For fans of: Alassane, JZ Replacement, Evan Marien
Written in the midst of the pandemic, Rachel Eckroth’s “You’re The Only Thing” is a sweet tribute to love. “I've spent almost all of the lockdown with my husband, Tim, and this song is just me saying that he's the only one I'd wanna lockdown with,” Eckroth says. “Life is short, and if COVID never ends, we'd be happy just being on this little horse farm in Arizona together.” With a slow-grooving beat and affectionate lyrics, the track breezes by. “You’re The Only Thing” will be included on Eckroth’s upcoming self-titled EP, due out May 21.
ROY3LS – “Destiny”
For fans of: Courtnie Ramirez, LUMINS, Neon Feather
Alt-pop’s ROY3LS share an uplifting anthem encouraging listeners to pursue their own dreams with “Destiny.” Heavy synths are joined by choir vocalizations and a deep bassline. The sister trio hope their music can encourage others to make their own destinies. “After an uncertain year, ‘Destiny’ is our response to how we are going to move forward in 2021,” the band say. “How we are going to stay true to who we are, no matter what the circumstances are around us.” The track is the latest in a series of singles and follows “Diamond Love” featuring Jones and a cover of Justin Bieber’s Christmas anthem “Mistletoe.”
The Sight Of Impact – “Unrealistic”
For fans of: Motionless In White, Bring Me The Horizon, I Prevail
Using heavy breakdowns and relatable lyrics, the Sight Of Impact hope to never forget who they truly are in their latest single, “Unrealistic.” Tearing through each verse with intense progressions, the South Texas quintet encourage their listeners not to mix fantasies with reality and to stay true to themselves. “Unrealistic” is the group’s first release of the year and follows previous singles “Venom” and “My Broken Record.”
The Silk War – “Barcelona”
For fans of: Interpol, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Klaxons
As the third single off their upcoming debut album, the Silk War’s “Barcelona” is a soft swing tune that will have you swaying to each beat. Focusing on how it’s difficult to make a future with someone stuck in the past, the track’s harmonizing strings pair beautifully with the moving guitar progressions and vocals. “Barcelona” follows previous singles “Blue Hour” and “Velvet. ”The group’s debut LP, Come Evening, drops May 14.
SK8 – “Caught In The Middle”
For fans of: MOD SUN, Maggie Lindemann, Oliver Francis
Mixing pop-punk riffs with trap lyricism, SK8 (Nathan Maloley) presents his latest anthem, “Caught In The Middle.” Singing of the struggles that come with being in a relationship while trying to advance in his career, Maloley shares his vulnerabilities with memorable choruses and beats. The track is off his upcoming project, Pages, and follows previous singles “Famous” featuring Tyla Yaweh and “Obvious.”
Skiifall – “Ting Tun Up Part II” (feat. Knucks)
For fans of: Gxlden Child, Young Troy, Planet Giza
Skiifall follows up debut single “Ting Tun Up” with his second track, “Ting Tun Up Part II.” Influenced by hip-hop, the artist aims to mix different styles to create unique rhythms and deliveries. The Saint Vincent native inflects his sound with a distinctive global presence. Featuring British rapper Knucks, the track’s steady piano background guides the lyricists through each smooth verse and hook. As the repeated chorus fades to the end, Skiifall’s delivery never falters and leaves listeners grasping for more.
Skofee – “QVC”
For fans of: St. Vincent, Sasha Sloan, BANKS
After being amused by an infomercial while channel-flipping one day, alt-pop singer Skofee (Anna Marie Scholfield) turns what she saw into a comical music video for “QVC.” Comparing her life to the dramatizations onscreen, Scholfield delivers her lines with a deep wispiness. As her harmonies blend together, resounding bass progressions lead each verse, only releasing when spirited synths join in. “QVC” is her second single since the release of her 2020 EP, Polished.
STORMRULER – “Of Hollowed Souls & Distant Flame”
For fans of: Serpents Oath, Grima, Aara
With their second single of the year, STORMRULER unleash intense screams alongside shattering breakdowns. Enthralling progressions lead thundering drums and cadences through each dip of the track. “‘Of Hollowed Souls & Distant Flame’ is the final song we composed for the record, and we felt it was a good second single to represent the band's direction,” the group explain. “Lyrically, it invokes a feeling of being liberated, from both physical and mental shackles.” The track will be included on the band’s upcoming record, Under The Burning Eclipse, out May 28 via Napalm Records.
Vinok – “river”
Vinok share "river," the latest single from their brand new debut record Holy Fool. Echoing vocals give way to searing riffs, speeding up during the bridge before taking it back down to a calmer finale. Hailing from Eastern Europe, the trio use their separate backgrounds in mental health and journalism as well as where they grew up to inspire their writing. Drummer Ilya Timtchenko believes the track isn't what some listeners may translate it as saying. “For some, ‘river’ can be seen as a tragedy, but for us, it is definitely a story of redemption.” “river” is the band’s fourth single this year following “Friends,” “Hold On Me” and “Critical.”
WHIT3 COLLR – “16 Sweet”
For fans of: The Black Keys, KALEO, Greta Van Fleet
Presenting their debut single, WHIT3 COLLR drop classic-rock-inspired grooves lined with neo-’80s metal vibes. Dark progressions lead each beat of “16 Sweet” into raging choruses and breaks, never losing their fierce energy. Influenced by the likes of Van Halen and Mötley Crüe, the group hope they can continue to create music they love. “We are doing it because we love it, and we just want to project that energy onto our fans,” they say. “We are in it to create and put something out we are truly proud of.” The duo plan on dropping their debut album later this year.
Whitehall – “Contingency Plan”
For fans of: Cage The Elephant, Arctic Monkeys, Night Cap
As the leading track on Whitehall’s latest full-length, “Contingency Plan” opens it up with echoing riffs and relatable lyrics. With tight progressions and the occasional guitar break, the band present heavy indie-rock rhythms inside cheery grooves. Speaking about the album, vocalist Paddy McKiernan says the main focus of Swordfish Catcher was self-reflection. “We wrote Swordfish Catcher as a deep dive into everything we were feeling at the time,” he says. “We were excited and optimistic but still wary and anxious. All of those emotions coexisted and combined into the record’s landscape.” The LP dropped April 2 and is available to stream via Common Ground Collective.