Though Icona Pop was first noticed when their hit single “I Love It” was featured in a wild club scene in the hit HBO dramatic comedy “Girls,” they have since gained widespread popularity. Started in 2009, the Swedish Aino Jawo and Caroline Hjelt have created a unique synthetic pop sound, with a touch of indie tragedy. They are currently touring with Passion Pit and Matt and Kim, and are expecting to pick up more of a following as their EP “Iconic” is spread among music festival audiences. For now, check out “I Love It” for a fun, pulsing dance remix that you will dance your heart out to and “Ready for the Weekend” for a dubstep-infused dance jam.
With their infectious single named after the beautiful city, “San Francisco,” the Mowgli’s are already off to a strong career. The band is made up of Michael Vincze, David Applebaum, Spencer Trent, Matt Di Panni, Josh Hogan, Andy Warren, Colin Dieden and Katie Eary, all hailing from Los Angeles. All eight members contribute to vocals, guitar, drums, bass and keyboard. The Mowgli’s released a five-track EP “Love’s Not Dead” earlier this fall and their single is beginning to get playtime on alternative rock stations, such as Live 105.3. For good, beachy music reminiscent of a fun and simple time, check out “San Francisco” and “The Great Divide.”
The Tallest Man on Earth
Kristian Matsson, who performs under the stage name The Tallest Man on Earth, is a singer and songwriter from Sweden. With a style similar to indie band Bon Iver, but with a more pronounced beats, Matsson has received critical acclaim for the content of songs, garnering several comparisons to rock legend Bob Dylan. Since 2006, he has released three full-length albums and two EP’s, but has yet to get popularity in the United States. For fun, soulful music with intricate guitar work and a quirky sound, check out the singles “The Gardener” and “I Won’t Be Found.”
Jhameel didn’t follow his original path of becoming an officer in the United States Army. Instead, he got a degree in Arabic from UC Berkeley and is now putting out indie-pop tracks that make you want to sing along. Having already self-produced two albums and three EP’s, Jhameel is known for his usage of different classical instruments alongside synthesized beats, lyrics that tackle issues such as domestic violence and his vocals (which are reminiscent of Michael Jackson at one point and then similar to a soft, melodic boy-band at another). Check out “White Lie” and “Shadow of a Man” to see the range of different types of music Jhameel can bring to the table.
Indie-pop and rock are given a new look with this California quintet, known by the logo of an upside down house. Many of their tracks have a mysterious and eerie appeal. They heavy percussion and guitar sounds, with raspy vocals by the lead singer, Jesse Rutherford, who has previously dabbled in hip-hop music. The band only has two EP’s out, “I’m Sorry…” and “Thank You,” but has gained some Internet popularity through their first few tracks. For some slower, almost moody and percussion-filled tracks that make you want to tap your foot to the beat, check out “Sweater Weather” and “Female Robbery.”
Grace Potter and the Nocturnals
With lead singer Grace Potter belting out some powerful notes with a heart-wrenching voice, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals are still going strong since their first album in 2005. This band, comprised of four multi-talented members, is known as an indie-rock and just straight-up rock band but their songs can cover soulful piano and acoustic guitar strumming, to head-banging worthy and in-your-face loud. Check out “Stars” for a softer, mellow piano-based track and “Paris (Ooh La La)” for a change in tempo and emotion when the band heads back to its rock roots.