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 return of Red Hot Chili Peppers, the anticipated new album from Mitski, and a return to form for Animal Collective. Check out the rest of the best new indie music below.
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Mitski – Laurel Hell
Mitski was very close to quitting music altogether after the conclusion of the Be The Cowboy tour in 2019. Lucky for us, she has graced us with another new project just three years later, featuring some of her poppiest songs to date created in collaboration with Dan Wilson, one of the top hired guns in the business whose past credits include tracks with Adele and Taylor Swift. Laurel Hell as an album seems to revolve around a central conflict, according to Steven Hyden for Uproxx: “Is this a full-blown bid for pop superstardom? Or is it a subversive spin on the idea of a pop record akin to Mitski’s other work?”
Animal Collective – Time Skiffs
It’s been 13 years since Animal Collective released Merriweather Post Pavilion, and the newly released Time Skiffs might be their best record since. “After two difficult (though in my estimation underrated) records, Time Skiffs is the sequel to Merriweather Post Pavilion that many fans probably would have wanted a decade ago,” Steven Hyden wrote for Uproxx. All told, Time Skiffs features some of Animal Collective’s most straightforward music to date, that might allow them to win over new fans while still satisfying the veterans.
Black Country, New Road – Ants From Up There
Despite some release week drama, Black Country, New Road’s hotly anticipated sophomore album Ants From Up Here has finally arrived, and it is a stunner. The album sounds quite unlike anything that has been released in recent memory, and is reminiscent of Arcade Fire’s Funeral in terms of its grand vision and evocative execution that leaves the listener feeling an overwhelming sense of wonder even after the album concludes.
Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Black Summer”
You have to respect Red Hot Chili Peppers’ commitment to the bit. “Black Summer” is the first preview of Unlimited Love, the legendary band’s first new album since 2016’s The Getaway, and their first with guitarist John Frusciante in the fold since 2006’s Stadium Arcadium. But all that being said, is Anthony Kiedis singing in an Irish accent here? Are the Chili Peppers trying to capitalize on the TikTok sea shanty trend, more than a year after the fact? It doesn’t matter either way, it’s just great to hear the band back in action again with slick riffs and Flea’s signature funky bass lines.
Lucy Dacus – “Kissing Lessons”
Lucy Dacus took an innovative approach to releasing her new single, “Kissing Lessons,” opting to make the song only available via phone call before sharing it widely on streaming services. The songs is what Derrick Rossignol calls for Uproxx “a brief one, clocking in at under two minutes, and Dacus uses that time to tell a story about learning the ins and outs of smooching from a childhood friend.”
Illuminati Hotties – “Sandwich Sharer”
Illuminati Hotties released one of 2021’s best albums with Let Me Do One More. Now, ahead of the band’s anticipated headlining tour in support of the album, Sarah Tudzin has released another new song to celebrate the tour’s kick-off. “Sandwich Sharer” tells the story of Tudzin searching for someone to match her chaotic energy, and fittingly “teeters between slow and sparse and quick-tempoed and bombastic,” writes Carolyn Droke for Uproxx.
Arlo Parks – “Softly”
After her debut album, Collapsed In Sunbeams was awarded a Mercury Prize and nominated for a Grammy, Arlo Parks has returned with her first new music of 2022. “Softly” is “about how it feels to brace yourself before the blow of a break up and reminisce about the days where it all felt luminous,” Parks explained in a statement. Despite the tentative subject matter, the track unfolds in an upbeat fashion with gorgeous production flourishes and pristine storytelling.
Sasami – “Call Me Home”
Sasami’s self-titled 2019 debut was marked the Los Angeles singer-songwriter as a force to be reckoned with, and she is now ready to follow it up with Squeeze. “Call Me Home,” the latest offering from the LP, is what Derrick Rossignol calls for Uproxx “a perfect blend of folk-rock serenity and shoegazing heaviness.” It’s a song about the tendency to blow one’s life up just to trick their brain into feeling something after a long period of emotional vacancy.
Young Guv – “Good Time”
Despite making a name in the pummeling hardcore punk scene, Ben Cook’s music released under the name Young Guv is nothing but pleasant. The forthcoming Guv III is comprised of driving power-pop numbers that will surely be great soundtracks for spring drives when the weather starts to warm up. “Good Time” is a beautiful love song that features instantly enveloping vocal harmonies reminiscent of classic Laurel Canyon artists of the ’70s.
Glacier Veins – “Autonomy”
Portland, Oregon dream punk outfit Glacier Veins have announced their sophomore album, Lunar Reflection, which is due out in March. Over a wall of guitars (and an eventual guitar solo! Nice!), the album’s single “Autonomy” illustrates the band’s pristine production and the power of Malia Endres’ vocals, firmly establishing Glacier Veins as a band to watch in 2022.
Some artists covered here are Warner Music artists. Uproxx is an independent subsidiary of Warner Music Group.