BEST NEW INDIE POP RELEASES TO KICK OFF THE NEW YEAR
Image by Ibrahim Boran on Unsplash
Happy New Year everyone, and what a year it is already cracking up to be. With the Georgia Runoff election, rioters raging in DC as I type this, and COVID-19 spinning out of control in LA, and the start of the distribution of the vaccine, we’ve already faced extreme highs and lows.
It’s in times like these that we turn to music for support and guidance. For this week’s indie pop round up, we’ve picked songs with themes of excitement, hope, and honesty surrounding a new stage of life. From favorites like SZA and Lauv, to newcomers like redveil, there’s lots to listen to and lots to learn in this week’s post.
SZA - “GOOD DAYS”
On the first day of Christmas, SZA brought us “Good Days,” which has been heavily requested by fans since it’s preview at the end of the “Hit Different” music video. The song is lush, honest, and shares a sense of optimism in the face of darkness. No matter what’s going on, “Good Days” reminds us of the power in believing that better times are on the horizon. With Jacob Collier’s vocals, stunning instrumentals, and SZA’s clear and skilled vocals, the poetic lyrics are supported through and through. Here’s to hoping 2021 is filled with good days.
REYKO - “SATURDAY”
At the top of the year, REYKO shared “Saturday.” Synth and bass driven with infectious melodies, the London-based electropop duo does not disappoint. “Saturday” features whispery vocals, poetic lyrics, and this feeling of potential energy- like a rollercoaster about to fly down a hill. “Saturday” is equal parts excitement and nervousness, reflective of the feelings many of us hold towards 2021.
REDVEIL - “HOW 2 FIND HOPE”
At just 16, redveil had a big 2020 and is poised to continue that trend into 2021. Named one of Tyler the Creators’ new favorites, he released “how 2 find hope” on the 30th and caught the attention of Spotify’s New Music Friday playlist. With horns, vocal samples, and introspective lyrics, the self-produced track further affirms that he’s one to watch.
R3HAB FT. NINA NESBITT - “FAMILY VALUES - ACOUSTIC”
Indie-pop singer-songwriter, Nina Nesbitt and DJ/producer R3HAB collaborated on “Family Values,” a while back. January 1st, the two shared an acoustic version of the pop/house track. Stripped back, the acoustic version allows Nesbitt’s vocals and songwriting to shine.
LAUV - “2021”
On New Years eve, Lauv gave us one last holiday gift with the release of “2021.” The song’s optimistic lyrics sit over a chill track. While the vocals are auto-tuned, the song features Lauv’s signature strengths in the melodic intricacies.
GABRIELLE APLIN - “WHEN THE LIGHTS GO OUT”
Singer-songwriter Gabrielle Aplin brings us a positive jam about being seen for who you really are. Pulsing keys support the verse, and the chorus introduces a danceable beat. Her gentle vocals and lyrics sit at the forefront. “When The Lights Go Out” serves as a great reminder of the kind of people we should surround ourselves with and appreciate.
JORDY, OSTON - “TOMORROW (ACOUSTIC)”
JORDY and OSTON shared “Tomorrow” a little bit ago, and on Christmas eve the two shared a stunning acoustic version. “Tomorrow” is about a feeling I think we all know pretty well at this point in the pandemic. There’s this feeling of waiting on things to get better in the future, while losing track of the present. The last few months have felt like just going through the motions, so it feels quite fitting that this acoustic version came right before the new year. 2021 has served as the metaphorical “tomorrow” for a lot of us, so our fingers and toes are crossed in hopes that the year actually is better!
Looking for more new music to take into 2021? Check out our Weekly Chart playlist!
Arielle Tindel is from Cleveland, Ohio. She recently graduated from Berklee College of Music with degrees in Music Business Marketing and Songwriting. In her free time, Arielle can be found gardening or playing bass.