AP&R Playlist: ’80s-inspired indie rock, punchy pop and gut-wrenching djent
Here are 10 brand-new releases to put on your radar.May 23, 2020
You’re welcome: We’ve made finding new songs by rising bands easy. Each week, we’re gathering the best from the underground and offering it to you in one concise list. Scroll below and check out our Spotify Discover playlist, featuring these tracks and more!
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1. jxdn – “Angels & Demons”
For fans of: Machine Gun Kelly, Cameron Dallas and the Vamps
Travis Barker’s DTA Records anounced its first signing jxdn, who recently shared his single “Angels & Demons” via the label. The 19-year-old genre-bender and TikTok star Jaden Hossler unleashed his powerful vocals infused with emo-rap influences and rock star energy in the new track featuring Barker’s production and drums. “Angels & Demons” serves as the follow-up to his well-loved single “Comatose.” “I just wanted to change the world with my music. No better person to do that with than Travis,” jxdn says of his signing.
2. Lights Over Bridgeport – “Morning In Chicago”
For fans of: The Menzingers, Face To Face and Masked Intruder
Chicago punk quartet Lights Over Bridgeport shared their nostalgia-inducing track “Morning In Chicago” along with its music video. The pop-punk song will send you back to the ’90s with urgent vocals, undeniably catchy choruses and headbanging riffs. The band released their new album, Better This Way, featuring 11 original tracks, including “Morning In Chicago.” They even recorded with Nick Diener of the Swellers for their record, marking a perfect collaboration of Midwestern pop punk.
3. Inhaler – “Falling In”
For fans of: The Fratellis, Sports Team and Larkins
Dublin rock outfit Inhaler released their new single “Falling In” via Interscope Records. The dynamic song is a testament to the band’s creativity, combining eccentric vocals and energetic ’80s-styled synths with airy instrumentals in varying parts. The band noted how this track reflects their rise in popularity in the indie-rock community. “Your ego can be your friend, but you need your mates to make sure it doesn’t boss you around,” frontman Elijah Hewson says of the song.
4. Lost In Japan – “Ego”
For fans of: DREAMERS, cleopatrick and Cemetery Sun
Modern rock quartet Lost In Japan shared their most recent single “Ego,” their first release since their 2018 debut self-titled album. “Ego” features driving guitars, urgent vocals and lyrics brimming with questions for all listeners to ponder. “Playing show after show, you start to get this sense of disassociation from your onstage persona and offstage self,” the band say of the track. “We saw this happen to ourselves and many fellow musicians too.” This single serves as the first track for their forthcoming EP.
5. Currents – “Monsters”
For fans of: Dayseeker, Loathe and As I Lay Dying
Connecticut metalcore, djent-tinged five-piece Currents shared their single “Monsters” ahead of their sophomore album release. “Monsters” is characterized by catchy choruses, gut-wrenching screams and breakdowns perfect for opening up the pit. The track “is about taking responsibility for the toxic relationships in your life and using past failures as fuel for the future,” singer Brian Wille says. Currents’ sophomore LP, The Way It Ends, will be available June 5. Preorders are available here.
6. Dream Wife – “So When You Gonna…”
For fans of: Fontaines D.C., Starcrawler and Hotel Lux
Hailing from London, Dream Wife are pulling no punches in their fierce new song “So When You Gonna…” accompanied by its quirky, electric new music video. The trio defy both genre and gender constraints with their glittery yet edgy sound, combining modern pop and classic-rock influences to deliver a catchy, defiant song sure to make you scream along. “It’s about communicating your desires, wholehearted consent and the point where talking is no longer enough,” Dream Wife say of the track. “It promotes body autonomy and self-empowerment through grabbing the moment.” “So When You Gonna…” serves as the title track to the group’s forthcoming album due out July 3. Preorders are available here. The trio also announced 2021 tour dates. Check out the full list of shows here.
7. Corey Harper – “Fade To Black”
For fans of: Nightly, Valley and Jake Scott
Los Angeles singer-songwriter Corey Harper proves himself to be an amazing storyteller in his melancholy and intimate new song, “Fade To Black.” Harper’s subtle acoustic instrumentals and deep vocals tackle the hard-hitting subject of addiction, something he experienced by watching his brother struggle with drug misuse. “This music is about confusion and sadness and hope,” Harper says. “It’s about what happens before the storm arrives, when you’re trying to find your direction through the fog.” “Fade To Black” will appear on Harper’s forthcoming Overcast EP, along with five other tracks, due out June 5. You can presave the EP here.
8. JJ Wilde – “Cold Shoulder”
For fans of: The Struts, Amy Winehouse and YONAKA
JJ Wilde is kicking ass and taking names in her single “Cold Shoulder,” the first release since “Funeral For A Lover” earlier this year. Wilde uniquely blends hard-rock instrumentals with her bluesy, raw voice and has toured with the likes of the Struts and the Glorious Sons. “Cold Shoulder” is one of four powerful alt-rock singles to appear on her forthcoming debut album, Ruthless, available June 12. Preorders are available here.
9. Amarionette – “Golden Without You”
For fans of: Anberlin, Hail The Sun and Emarosa
Las Vegas alt-rock outfit Amarionette released their nostalgic track “Golden Without You.” Full of bright melodies, catchy hooks, relatable lyrics and a colorful aesthetic, “Golden Without You” sets an example for other modern rock projects to follow. The song will be available on the group’s forthcoming debut LP, Sunset On This Generation, available July 10. Preorders are available here.
10. Best Ex – “Good At Feeling Bad”
For fans of: Cavetown, lovelytheband and chloe moriondo
NYC-based indie-pop project Best Ex released their brand-new EP, Good At Feeling Bad, via No Sleep Records featuring their vibrant title track. Vocalist Mariel Loveland formerly of Candy Hearts pairs airy pop vocals with her deepest thoughts to create the energy of Best Ex. “To me, this EP is a middle finger from a woman who’s over it and finds happiness regardless of the things that constantly try to knock us down,” Loveland says.