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 the first taste of a new Foo Fighters album, a Goo Goo Dolls cover from Phoebe Bridgers with an assist from Maggie Rogers, and a barn-burning pure rock and roll LP from The Bluechips. Check out the rest of the best new indie music below.
Chris Stapleton – Starting Over
Believe it or not, Chris Stapleton is one of the biggest songwriters in the country these days. He doesn’t reinvent the wheel on his latest album Starting Over, opting for his tried and true formula of exceptional heartland rock, as described by Steven Hyden for Uproxx: “Take the soulful bar-band raspiness of Bob Seger, meld it with the simple yet catchy homespun melodies of John Mellencamp, sprinkle in some Tom Petty guitars and add the smallest pinch of Waylon and Willie.”
Told Slant – Point The Flashlight And Walk
Told Slant took an extended hiatus after the release of 2016’s Going By, quietly working on and refining the follow up. Point The Flashlight And Walk delicately balances influences of experimental folk and indie-pop, “examining psychic pain and searching for transcendence,” according to Steven Hyden in the latest Indie Mixtape newsletter.
William Basinski – Lamentations
You might know the name William Basinski from his lauded four-volume 2002 album The Disintegration Loops. The avant-garde composer and multi-instrumentalist’s latest effort Lamentations is his second release of 2020, but Basinski doesn’t sacrifice quality for quantity, with each release pushing the boundaries of the previous.
The Bluechips – Say Goodbye
Hailing from Westchester County, New York, The Bluechips have cut their teeth over the last few years as a bar band, perfecting covers from classic rock greats. On Say Goodbye, they incorporate all of these influences into a concept album, which examines the state of the world from a birds eye view on an airplane, taking sequencing inspiration from Pink Floyd’s Animals. If you’ve read this column in the past, you probably know I am a sucker for big hooks and guitar solos… This album is chock full of both.
Foo Fighters – “Shame Shame”
Shortly debuting the track live on Saturday Night Live‘s post-election episode, Foo Fighters shared the studio version of “Shame Shame,” the first single from their tenth album Medicine At Midnight. It’s a different sound than we’re used to hearing from Dave Grohl and co., incorporating a groovy sensibility more akin to David Bowie than Motörhead. Nonetheless, it certainly sets the bar high for the forthcoming LP.
Phoebe Bridgers – “Iris” (Goo Goo Dolls cover ft. Maggie Rogers)
On election day, Phoebe Bridgers tweeted a promise that she would cover “Iris” by Goo Goo Dolls “if Trump loses.” Well, Phoebe is nothing if not true to her word, and she has shared the promised cover, enlisting help from none other than Maggie Rogers on backing vocals. The track was only available on Bandcamp for 24 hours, but it’s out there if you can find it.
The Antlers – “It Is What It Is”
While they haven’t announced a new album just yet, The Antlers are setting the stage for a comeback after six years out of the spotlight. Peter Silberman calls the relaxing new single “It Is What It Is” a “song about hindsight,” and it reminds us what we were missing in the years since 2014’s Familiars.
Chloe Moriondo – “Girl On TV”
The latest track from 18-year-old Chloe Moriondo perfectly combines bedroom pop sensibilities with arena rock grandeur, making for a more aggressive approach than we have heard from Moriondo previously. In a statement, the songwriter said that the song is “about the sort of underlying superficial jealousy that comes along with the usual disdain myself and I think a lot of others feel when looking at rich influencers with seemingly perfect faces and bodies and lives!!!!”
Kali Masi – “The Stray”
It’s tracks like “The Stray” that make me really miss shows — it just seems like a song that would take on a completely new life in the live setting. A heavy and raucous punk number, it’s the first taste of the band’s forthcoming LP [laughs].
Teddy Grossman – “What I Owe”
Teddy Grossman recorded his debut single to a tape machine, teaming up with Ryan Pollie for a lo-fi number that takes inspiration from the heartland folk feel of Neil Young’s Harvest for an intimate look at Grossman’s joy in finally feeling settled after a cross-country move.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.