Crate Digging is Uproxx Music’s monthly exploration of the depths of DIY music distribution platform Bandcamp, in an effort to unearth some hidden gem albums that just might find their spot among your favorites.
There’s a reason that certain artists define our culture: Their work is exciting, thought-provoking, fascinating, or just flat-out fun. It’s important to recognize those who have risen to the top and appreciate what it is that got them there and how they manage to stay there. At the same time, however, it’s also valuable to understand the broader musical context. There’s a lot going on beyond the chart-toppers, and sometimes, some truly great work goes under-appreciated. That’s why every month, I dig through DIY music distribution platform Bandcamp and share my favorite albums that hit the service over the past few weeks.
The best Bandcamp albums from this month include EVA and Stillhungry, so check them out below.
The Reds, Pinks & Purples — Anxiety Art
The latest effort from San Francisco project The Reds, Pinks & Purples is breezy indie comfort food. That’s an extremely appropriate (and not pre-ordained, I promise) descriptor, as Glenn Donaldson recorded the album in his kitchen. It’s not music to think about necessarily, but music to let yourself stop thinking about anything else. It’s easy to listen to, it’s relaxing, and after a stressful day, it could be just what you need.
Xela Edna et Eius Echo — Ultraviolet
Contemporary hip-hop is full of experimenters, and among those is Montreal duo Xela Edna et Eius Echo. Over the course of four tracks, the two test the limits of the genre, and the results are sonically thought-provoking. “Va te faire foutre” (“Kiss My Ass”) has huge underwater-sounding synths and big bass underscoring rhythmic French rapping, while the title track is akin to warped alt-R&B from outer space. It’s not a conventional collection of tunes, and that’s what makes it fascinating.
Kid Advay — Krooked
This North Carolina artist describes their music as “lakewater rock,” and at different times on Krooked, that can sound like different things. “Phony” has a synthier-and-more-ambient-Mac-DeMarco feel, “Sun Is Out” is bright and reverb-drenched, and there’s plenty of lo-fi to go around throughout the record. While Kid Advay isn’t necessarily doing anything novel on his latest album, he has put out a collection of tunes that should find a spot in the hearts of chilled-out-indie fans all over.
Stillhungry — Stillhungry
If summer is peak country music season, then fall is ripe for post-country: The genre’s folky vibes and slight twang are the perfect soundtrack for watching the leaves turn warm-colored. That’s true of New Jersey trio Stillhungry, whose new self-titled album features songs like album opener “Sunco,” which wouldn’t sound out of place on Better Oblivion Community Center’s new album, and the epically climactic “Get Well.” Ultimately, it’s a triumph that incorporates elements of country, folk, and alternative rock in a myriad of delightful ways.
EVA — Truthfully
Brooklyn electropop act EVA brings some real pedigree to the table: She contributed to Blood Orange’s revered Negro Swan album. As one might expect, then, she’s adept at making tunes that are both adventurous and catchy. “Truthfully,” for instance, is pure pop, albeit a slightly more dense version that delivered by most Top 40 hits. She’s a talented experimenter beyond that as well, showing her ability to explore varying genres like R&B on “Honeycomb” and electro-funk on “Lazy.”