best music projects led by women, against the current, teddy
[Photos by: Against The Current/Spotify, teddy<3/Spotify, The Pretty Reckless, Stand Atlantic/Spotify, YONAKA/Spotify]

Women in rock, from Against Me! and Evanescence to Paramore and Tonight Alive, are larger than life. While shaping the alternative music world as we know it, they also proved that women belong in rock ‘n’ roll. They all continue to inspire other young women to push against the status quo of the male-dominated music industry.

While Hayley Williams is still working on music with Paramore and other major scene legends are working hard behind the scenes, we decided to shed light on pop-punk, indie-rock and other acts led by women who recently put out music this past year and definitely need to be on your playlist if they aren’t already.

Read more: 10 modern musicians keeping the political conversation alive

Check out these 12 projects fronted by women below who have new music to share and are leaders and up-and-comers in the alternative space.

Stand Atlantic

Stand Atlantic are growing their fanbase day by day with their authentic pop-punk sounds, from “Lavender Bones” off their 2018 album, Skinny Dipping, to their most recent release “I’m Sorry” featuring Mokita. Lead vocalist Bonnie Fraser always brings high energy and powerful vocals to each set, and you won’t want to miss Stand Atlantic when they go out on tour again. They released their sophomore album, Pink Elephant, in 2020, which contains incredible tracks such as “Hate Me (Sometimes),” “Jurassic Park” and more.

New Dialogue

New Dialogue have cranked out several bright indie-pop tracks that are sure to bring a little light to your day no matter the weather outside your window. Their most recent song “Flesh & Blood” is a banger and features fellow pop ensemble Smallpools. Previous tracks that are sung by Ela Kitapci such as “Fake Smile” and “Pilgrims” are also major pick-me-ups for pop fans.

YONAKA

YONAKA are burning up the alternative scene with their new track “Seize The Power.” All of their creations, especially this recent release, are dark, sexy and unlike any other pop song you’ve heard. They combine elements of hardcore with bubbly pop, soul and a bit of hip-hop. It’s truly the best of all of your favorite genres. Theresa Jarvis is a dynamic and well-rounded vocalist who will inspire the next generation of musicians to experiment with sounds and share exactly what’s on their minds. This song proves that women aren’t here to ask for power—we’re here to “take it.”

teddy<3

Teddy Geiger, aka teddy<3, is one of the best songwriters in the biz who you may have not known about. She’s crafted chart-topping singles for Shawn Mendes as well as writing with P!nk, Niall Horan and more. Her influence is unmatched, and now she’s ready to share her own project. Her most recent release, “Sharkbait,” is an absolute indie dream, with a groovy bassline perfect for your beach playlist this summer. You can also check out LillyAnna, the full-length debut from this project with such favorites as “Get Me High” and “Under The Blue.”

Hot Milk

Hot Milk are a band you need to add to your Spotify playlist ASAP, fronted by duo Jim Shaw and Han Mee. Mee is a woman with major pipes. Their latest release, “Glass Spiders,” is one hell of an emotional roller coaster. Mark Hoppus and Mitchy Collins even did a remix of their single “Candy Coated Lie$.” If you’re looking for a solid heartbreak song, that’s definitely the one you need to hear. As of now, they already have dates lined up for shows in Europe. If you’re lucky enough to live in a country with safe concerts, check them out.

Yours Truly

Yours Truly hail from Australia and are rising straight to the top of your pop-punk playlists with their debut album. Lead vocalist Mikaila Delgado projects urgency and passion in each note she sings and will make you both nostalgic and stoked for the future of pop punk. By streaming their debut record, Self Care, you’re actually practicing just that.

Against The Current

Against The Current are coming into their own as a scene staple. Lead singer Chrissy Costanza, in all of her back-bending glory, fronts the band and has toured around the world. Her insane range and incredible collaborations with the likes of the Ready Set and Dashboard Confessional is truly something to behold. Even when discussing major issues such as heartbreak and mental health problems, Costanza makes each lyric relatable and each sound impossible to click away from. You’ll certainly lean into their new single “that won’t save us” and their 2018 LP, Past Lives.

Pale Waves

Heather Baron-Gracie, lead singer and rhythm guitarist of Pale Waves, chatted with Alternative Press about the band’s brand-new album, Who Am I?, and how the group have advanced since their 2018 LP debut. Baron-Gracie’s haunting vocals are unique and will surely capture your attention, no matter what genre you might think is your favorite. Additionally, Baron-Gracie is incredibly inspired by Hole‘s Courtney Love (another woman who broke stigmas in music), and we may hear some grunge in Pale Waves‘ next release. Fingers crossed.

Pleasure Venom

Pleasure Venom are a riotgrrrl act that is ready to have necessary political conversations. At the beginning of this year, lead singer Audrey Campbell offered her amazing screams, and yearning vocals on their track “Fascist,” marking the end of a reign of terror from the previous administration. You should also check out the band’s self-titled EP featuring such energetic punk tracks such as “Hive” and “Deth.”

Cherry Glazerr

Cherry Glazerr are a blooming experimental indie-rock band who explore a myriad of themes that are inherently feminist. Lead singer Clementine Creevy shares tracks about the patriarchy (and how to tear it down), embracing female sexuality and being true to yourself in a world that wants to keep women in a box. Their most recent release, “Big Bang,” is a must-listen for fans of Phoebe Bridgers, Soccer Mommy and other artists who encompass that raw, unapologetic indie vibe.

The Pretty Reckless

If you haven’t been paying attention to the Pretty Reckless, now is a perfect time. The Taylor Momsen-led hard-rock band just shared their new album, Death By Rock And Roll, and Momsen really shines with low growling vocals all the way to high screams and yells perfect for headbanging and letting loose. The band even worked with Tom Morello and Soundgarden‘s Matt Cameron and Kim Thayil on the new record.

PVRIS and REZZ

PVRIS‘ own Lynn Gunn teamed up with REZZ to create their cryptic EDM collab “Sacrificial” that’ll transport you through a twisted, raw atmosphere. Truly, PVRIS have been busy, having dropped the deluxe edition of Use Me in October 2020, which includes a bright synth-pop track called “Thank You” featuring RAYE. Then in December 2020, PVRIS collaborated with New York indie rockers Joywave for their Coming Apart (Remixes). Needless to say, PVRIS have been cranking out some incredible content that you have to check out for your remix fix.