Cheat sheet for new music

Alex Ebert of Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Z...
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We understand that it’s hard to keep up with all of the new music put out these days. Don’t worry, we are here to help you sort through the clutter. Based on your current musical tastes, we offer up some suggestions on which new artists are worth checking out.

If you like Passion Pit….Check out Naked and Famous. New Zealand band Naked and Famous could easily be mistaken for Passion Pit, with the high pitched vocals and electro-pop beats. The song “Young Blood” has reached #1 in their native country and the band was listed as one to watch in 2011 by BBC News, a distinction that went to Passion Pit themselves in 2009.

If you like Oracular Spectacular era MGMT….Check out Foster the People. The LA band’s “Pumped Up Kicks” was a perfect summer jam that carried me right through fall in 2010. And with hints of a full album to come, we finally have a few new tracks from Foster the People. Songs “Helena Beat” and “Houdini” both evoke the danceable, psychedelic pop of MGMT’s first album (and the side I miss most from Congratulations).

If you like Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros….Check out Alexander. Even if you don’t know the name Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros , you’ve surely heard their hit song “Home” dozens of times. The lead singer of the hippie collective band, Alex Ebert, has a solo album due out March 1st under the moniker Alexander. The laidback, folky “Truth” offers us a glimpse at what’s to come. Don’t worry, all you fans of “Home” – he hasn’t ditched the whistling.


Young the Giant
Young the Giant

If you like Kings of Leon….Check out Young the Giant. This So-Cal band created buzz when they (then called the Jakes) won an online contest in 2009 to open for Kings of Leon at the House of Blues in Chicago. The renamed Young the Giant is less Southern-rock influenced than KoL, but they have an arena rock ambition about them that could put them into the same category. Lead single “My Body” is a fun, high energy example of their sound. Added bonus – they don’t seem like as big of tools as the Followill’s.

If you like Coldplay….Check out A Silent Film. Though they already have some notoriety overseas, A Silent Film are just now starting to get attention in the US. With the earnest nature of the songwriting and the texture of the songs’ production, fans of Coldplay are sure to appreciate what this band has to offer. Singles “You Will Leave a Mark” and “Driven by Their Beating Hearts” are both worth a listen.

If you like pop music with neo-soul influence….Check out Graffiti6 and Fitz and the Tantrums. If there’s anyone out there still holding their breath waiting for the return of Amy Winehouse, then Fitz and the Tantrums just may give you a reason to exhale. Songs “Moneygrabber” and “Breakin’ the Chains of Love” would be right at home in Motown of the 60s, yet still sound relevant on the charts today. And with their electro-soul sound, duo Graffiti6 are nipping on Cee-Lo’s heels with songs like “Stare Into the Sun” and “Stop Mary”.

Graffiti6 and Fitz and the Tantrums
Graffiti6 and Fitz and the Tantrums
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