BEST INDIE SONGS – WEEK 51

12/19/16
“Photo” by Tom Rickhuss

There are six sleeps to go until Christmas, which means that this is my last post before the holidays. I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for joining me in listening to all that indie had to offer us this 2016. It's been a shitty fucking year for the most part, but at least music saved us when the rest of life didn't. On that note, why not enjoy one final dose of Best Indie Songs before the festivities begin from Jarryd James, Two Door Cinema Club, Francis And The Lights and many more? Just don't forget to support the featured bands, artists and producers by liking, sharing and buying their music using those iTunes vouchers that you're inevitably going to receive from your grandma on Sunday.

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JARRYD JAMES (FEAT. BROODS) – 1000X (ALTERNATE VERSION)

Six months after sharing the devastatingly gorgeous Broods collaboration “1000x,” Jarryd James returns with an emotional “alternate version” of the High ballad. No, really – if you thought that the original hit you feels, then wait until you press play on the above video. Just remember to keep a box of tissues nearby, because the music combined with the story told in the Sherry Elbe-directed clip will definitely make you cry.

 

TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB – SOMETHING GOOD CAN WORK (LIVE ON KCRW)

Two Door Cinema Club are sure to have you dancing in your desk chair this Monday morning with this upbeat live rendition of “Something Good Can Work.” The Irish band recently performed the 2010 indie pop classic for KCRW in Los Angeles as part of a four-song set, which also included hits from their third and latest album Gameshow.

 

SILVER ROSE – TAKE ME HOME

Introducing Carla Sariñana, aka Silver Rose, the Mexican singer-songwriter who presents a truly dreamy, larger-than-life sound on her debut single “Take Me Home.” Combining reverb-drenched vocals and big, shoegaze-indebted guitars, and accompanied by an Instagram-friendly video of Silver Rose exploring her adopted city of Los Angeles, “Take Me Home” is certain to appeal to fans of Mazzy Star and Cocteau Twins.

 

FRANCIS AND THE LIGHTS – FRIENDS

New York City crooner Francis Farwell Starlite, who records under the name Francis And The Lights, calls on some of his famous pals for his latest single, the aptly titled “Friends.” Bon Iver and Kanye West contribute vocals, while Rostam Bantmanglij, Ariel Rechtshaid, Benny Blanco and Cashmere Cat lend their production skills to the glimmering, thoughtful synth pop gem, which was originally sampled on Chance The Rapper's “Summer Friends.”

 

YOUNG SUMMER – OLD CHUNK OF COAL (BILLY JOE SHAVER COVER)

Washington, D.C. singer-songwriter Young Summer joins the likes of Johnny Cash and John Anderson in covering Billy Joe Shaver's “Old Chunk Of Coal.” Pairing Young Summer's emotive vocal coos with an ambient electronic production, it's a contemporary rendition of a country classic with a timely sentiment to match. Young Summer: “This song has always meant so much to me. I've been waiting to release it and it being the holidays, with the current political climate it feels more relevant than ever to release a hopeful song about knowing you can be, and having the desire to be, better than you ever imagined.”

 

SHY GIRLS – WHY I LOVE

Having recently unveiled “Trivial Motion,” Portland PBR&B producer Shy Girls returns today with yet another taste of his forthcoming debut album Salt. Like “Trivial Motion,”  “Why I Love” hears Dan Vidmar continue to embrace everything 80s, with the wavy guitars and afflicted falsetto crooning lending the song a power ballad vibe.

 

ECHOS – GOLD

If you're yet to listen to the self-titled debut EP from Portland electronic duo Echos, then a heads up that you're missing out on grandiose masterpieces like “Gold.” The second single to be released from the EP, “Gold” hears lead singer Lexi Norton's impassioned vocal melodies paired with producer Tal Richards' soaring arrangements, resulting in a dramatic outpouring of emotion that's nothing short of soul-stirring.

 

GEMS – BLOW OUT THE LIGHT

Gems returned on Wednesday with details of Every Full Moon – not an album, but a series that'll see the Washington, D.C. duo release a new song every time the full moon rises. Of course, there was a full moon in the sky on Wednesday, which means that Gems got things off the ground there and then with “Blow Out The Light.” A pillowy ballad written after the breakup of band members Lindsay Pitts and Clifford John Usher, “Blow Out The Light” is the definition of bedroom pop perfection.

 

TSÖRF – HOLD ON TO ME

Tsörf is bringing all of my dream pop fantasies to life with her latest single “Hold On To Me.” The follow-up to “Can I Be Close 2U?” and “Know The Light,” “Hold On To Me” is an otherworldly synth-drenched gem that hears the enigmatic New Zealand artist's vaporous vocals paired with what might be her most deeply ethereal production to date.

 

MATING RITUAL – HOW YOU GONNA STOP IT?

Los Angeles artist Ryan Marshall Lawhon, aka Mating Ritual, is getting the party started this December with his latest single “How You Gonna Stop It?” Featured on his upcoming debut album of the same name, “How You Gonna Stop It?” is a high-octane blast of indie pop that hears Lawhon sing-rapping the nihilistic lyrics with reckless abandon: “I hear the graveyard calling/Stop talking 'bout your work you know you're not gonna go/Might as well kick the bucket/Yeah it sucks getting old but how you gonna stop it?”

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Merry Christmas! x

Photo” by Tom Rickhuss is licensed under CC0 1.0 (cropped and resized).

About Jess Grant

When Jess Grant isn't writing on music, she can be found playing it – on her guitar, on her ukulele, and on her recently acquired mandolin. Playing it hideously, she ought to add. Jess also studies. She studies the English language, to be precise. Jess is currently on her way to a degree in the subject, and enjoys starting and never finishing novels, screenplays, and poetry in her spare time. She also likes dogs. Lots of dogs.