Bandcamp: A DIY Music Paradise

The fact that Bandcamp basically helped a 24-year-old get signed to a major indie label is making me wonder why it took me so long to pursue their talented offerings. And what a plethora there is.

My recent finds are those of the lo-fi/indie pop/bedroom pop variety (which I feel matches quite well with the do-it-yourself attitude of  Bandcamp itself) and come from all over the globe. That may be one of my favourite things about Bandcamp-you’re getting direct access and a chance to support worldwide creations that aren’t getting played on your typical, local alternative radio stations.

Here are a few highlights I’ve found in the past few days:

1.) “We’re Not Just Friends” by Parks, Squares and Alleys

Already I love this artist for not using the Oxford comma in their name, but besides my AP Style preferences this track is more like a dream sequence of walking around New York City at 3 a.m. with an excellent soundtrack of New Order’s demo tapes and a collaboration of Wild Nothing and Washed Out. If any of that sounds like it would tickle your fancy, add some strangely danceable beats, a sweet bass riff and some altered vocal layering and you’ve got your new jam of the week. Any questions?

2.) “weird around you” by Eerie Summer

This duo from Helsinki shocked me with a guitar-heavy track that’s got a plodding, heavy drumbeat that drives the track along like lonely, sad footsteps. Which is a bit what the entire song feels like: a hymn to unrequited love that rages and chimes with distorted guitars and sweet, tender lyrical performances (I especially love how well the harmonizing flows). I read it’s a tribute to “Daria,” and if that’s true, I’ve got all the more reason to love it.

3.) “So Sad, So Sad” by VARSITY

And following in our unrequited love theme is a more upbeat, bouncy track with a lovely female vocalist that will remind you of a breezy, carefree Best Coast vocal performance. How the band manages to create something so cheerful that you could sing along to on the first day of summer with wonderfully self-aware lyrics that are literally about not being able to win over the object of your affections is beyond me. I just know it’s a fun little slice of indie pop that deserves a spot on your “Summer Jams” playlist.

4.) “You’re Not That Nice Anyways” by Mio

On the rare occasaion I judge a song based almost entirely on the technical aspect of the vocals, and this song passes with flying chord progressions. It relies on somewhat dissonant, clanging guitar riffs as its main center of musical accompaniment, and other than that, it’s focus is backing vocals and exchanges of the lead vocals. The amount of precision it took to get each singer in at a certain time, and to make them able to keep time and pitch with each other, is what hooks me.

Have you given any of these tunes a listen? What’s your thoughts? Any recommendations/comments of what to look for on Bandcamp next?

As always, thank you so much for reading, and God bless.

-A.L.D.

 

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