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Baltimore indie group Lower Dens use synths to navigate a complex world on The Competition

Lower Dens emerged out of Baltimore’s fertile underground music scene in 2010, and they’ve since built a catalog of immersive, slow-boiling indie rock elevated by Jana Hunter’s inviting, resonant vocals. During the first half of the 2010s, they dropped three albums, which makes the four-year gap between 2015’s Escape From Evil and last year’s The […]

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Chicago’s Ratboys become the toast of the national indie scene with Printer’s Devil

Guitarist-vocalist Julia Steiner and guitarist David Sagan met as first-year students at the University of Notre Dame in 2010, and they’ve since become ingrained in Chicago underground rock. Under the name Ratboys, they made themselves a home in the emo scene in the mid-2010s, playing country-flecked indie songs and drawing in a couple prolific collaborators […]

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On Beware of the Dogs, Australian singer-songwriter Stella Donnelly bridges the gap between debatable and relatable

UPDATE: Tuesday, January 14, 12:50 PM:: Stella Donnelly has canceled her U.S. tour for health reasons. Paul Cherry has replaced her as the headliner of this show. Stella Donnelly’s truth creeps up on you. The sound of her voice over her gentle, electrified folk-rock guitar is like a chill that runs up your spine to […]

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Las Cafeteras don’t believe in borders, musical or otherwise

Chicano indie-folk band Las Cafeteras formed in 2005, after their members forged friendships while taking classes in traditional music, dance, and art at Los Angeles Mexican American cultural center the Eastside Cafe. The six-piece have built a signature hybrid sound rooted in the Afro-Mexican genre son jarocho, which employs a rich mixture of indigenous themes […]