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 very best of the indie releases from the past seven days. This week saw (Sandy) Alex G return with new music that’s like, “we get it, you worked with Frank Ocean” (in a good way), Japanese Breakfast unveil a beautifully intimate ’80s cover, and Bon Iver share their first new music since 2016’s 22, A Million in the form of a pair of super collaborative songs. Lots of indie darlings sharing new music this week!
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(Sandy) Alex G — “Gretel”
Unstoppably prolific for the better part of the 2010s, (Sandy) Alex G’s first new music in two years isn’t unexpected, but it is certainly exciting. From the first moments of “Gretel,” the first single of Alex’s ninth(!!!) album, it clear that his time in the studio with Frank Ocean working on Blonde served his songwriting style as much as it did Frank’s. With a sharp sense of melody and the signature pitched-up vocals, “Gretel” is yet another impressive entry to (Sandy) Alex G’s increasingly massive catalogue.
Japanese Breakfast — “Head Over Heels”
We’ve heard Japanese Breakfast take on this ’80s classic in the live setting before, but the official studio version of this Tears For Fears hit takes on a little bit of a different feel. “The recorded rendition is more intimate, as it’s pretty much just Michelle Zauner and a keyboard,” writes Derrick Rossignol for Uproxx. I probably don’t even have to say it, but Zauner’s version is hauntingly beautiful, and was released only a few weeks after “Essentially,” the cover of “Head Over Heels” is Zauner’s second partnership with W Hotel’s W Records, and all of the proceeds from both tracks will benefit the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).