Did you ever notice how there are some really great bands who come out of the same cities? For instance, Spoon and Explosions in the Sky are both bands from Austin, Texas. Then, you’ve got groups like Camera Obscura and Chvrches from Glasgow. So, just in case you were wondering which of your favorite bands originated in some of the coolest cities in the world, we’ve figured it out for you! Welcome to our new section on nylon.com, City Mixtape, where we feature our favorite bands from some of the world’s best cities.
When people think of awesome music that’s come from Seattle, Washington, they think of legends like Bikini Kill and Nirvana. (Fun fact: Bikini Kill was actually formed in Olympia and Nirvana originated in Aberdeen.) But, there is still tons of seriously good music that actually did come from Seattle, and we’ve got an entire playlist for you to stream, featuring our top 10 below.
There are so many really good bands on the Captured Tracks label that it actually is hard to pick a favorite. But, since dream poppers Craft Spells are one of our favorites, are on the label, and from Seattle, there’s no way we couldn’t include them. The band just dropped their new album Nausea earlier this summer, and seeing as it’s their first release in two years, trust us when we say you won’t stop replaying this one. Oh, and the band is currently on tour, so go scoop up your tickets here!
Even though frontman Christopher Browder of indie rock duo Mansions calls Louisville his own personal hometown, Seattle is officially the home base of his band, according to Facebook. The singer-songwriter brings relatable acoustic tracks to this Seattle playlist, and even though the duo hasn’t had a release since last year (fingers crossed that this will change ASAP), they did just coming off of a tour with Hellogoodbye and Vacationer--so rad.
The Head and The Heart
Music fans who call Seattle home probably already know the story of this indie folk band who have the power to melt the hearts of their listeners--especially during live shows. But just in case you’re not familiar of this six-piece’s history, all it takes is a quick glance on their Facebook page to learn that, “The Head and the Heart came together in the summer of 2009, during frequent visits to the open mic night at Conor Byrne in Seattle’s Ballard neighborhood.” If you ask us, it’s pretty cool to know that musicians can still make it big just by playing open mic nights in a world that feels like it’s powered by YouTube. P.S. If you really feel like melting, check out this video of the band performing “Chasing a Ghost” live in 2011.
Glo-fi chillwave trio Beat Connection makes the kind of music that forces you to bob your head around without even realizing that you’re doing it. Even though the band hasn’t released a record since 2012, we’re just happy to stream tracks like “The Palace Garden, 4am” whenever we feel like getting into a better mood.
Band of Horses
Country music might not be your thing, but alternative country has a totally different sound--especially when it’s fused with indie rock. That’s exactly what you get when you play tracks by Band of Horses. Although the group of dudes with a history of impressive facial hair are now based out of South Carolina, frontman Ben Bridwill started the band in Seattle in 2004. FYI if you haven’t yet checked out the group’s live album, Acoustic at the Ryman, now is definitely when you’ll want to do so.
Listen to psych-rockers Night Beats if you’re down to hear some rad experimental, garage-rock tracks that’ll make you feel like you’re crowdsurfing inside a kaleidoscope. You can also definitely expect some southern soul from this three-piece (who are each originally from Texas).
A Fine Frenzy
Besides the fact that Alison Loren Sudol is a total style and beauty queen, the piano pop musician is also better known as A Fine Frenzy--the name of her band. The four-piece, fronted by Sudol, sites icons like Ella Fitzgerald, Radiohead, and Motown jams as their influences, which you can definitely hear on tracks like “Electric Twist.”
Thanks to social media, it’s pretty easy to remind yourself that your favorite bands are made up of people who are kind of like you. This time, you can thank Facebook, which is where frontman Robin Pecknold posted that he’s taken a break from touring and is going to school at Columbia. So, yes, even the lead vocalists of your favorite indie folk bands can live somewhat normal lives--that is, until someone recognizes him on campus. But don’t worry, because the Facebook status also lets us all know that Pecknold is still working on new tracks between classes. Phew.
Minus The Bear
Indie rockers Minus The Bear are another band that has a seriously good acoustic record--actually, they’ve got two. The first, Acoustics, dropped in 2008 and the second, rightfully named Acoustics II, came out last year. And yes, these two albums are a really awesome alternative if you can’t check out the four-piece IRL--but stay tuned to their Facebook just in case.
Lo-fi singer-songwriter Mike Hadreas, AKA Perfume Genius, just announced yesterday that he’ll be releasing a new album this fall. So mark September 22 in your calendars, which is the day Too Bright will drop. Even better? There’s a tour to go along with it. Get tickets here!
Did we forget some of your favorite Seattle bands? Tell us in the comments below!