Alt-rock music has been around since the beginning of the 1980s and gained massive popularity during the 90s. Some artists have been together for decades while others were born only in the past few years, with new artists popping up daily.
There’s something about the energy of pop-rock that makes it especially fun to listen to. You can hear the joy in the voices of these artists as they sing about their lives, and you get swept up in their enthusiasm for living.
In this playlist, we’ve included ten independent artists creating some of the best pop-rock music out there. These are new releases from fresh musical minds who are just getting started on their journey through life as musicians—and they’re ready to share them with you!
This playlist is perfect for when you’re looking for something new and exciting to listen to while driving or working out. It’s also a great way to discover contemporary artists before they hit it big (like some of these will), so check out these fantastic songs now before everyone else does!
You can listen to our full playlist which contains the artists’ music, and know more about their work by scrolling down the page.
1) HOLLY WILD – Inside My Head
With her latest album, Holly Wild has taken a courageous approach to confessional music, filled with reflective folk-pop, moody electro-pop, gritty electric guitars and invigorating pop hooks.
Holly Wild’s voice has that timelessly rare quality of being pristine, dynamic, and nuanced, yet also displaying a pure, expressive quality at the same time. This is a voice that speaks directly to the heart of the listener.
”Inside My Head is a song about the negative dialogue that goes around in my head, the endless loop telling me that I’m the jack of all trades, but the master of none. Chipping away at my self-confidence every day…”
”Do you know that feeling where someone can inspire you and shrink you down to nothing all at the same time? It’s through that comparison, and that pressure I put on myself to be successful, that the voice inside my head gets really loud.” – Holly Wild
The single is a rock-pop anthem that will get stuck in your head. It has catchy lyrics and great guitar riffs, and it’s a banger. Holly Wild’s voice is amazing and she has an incredible range for an indie artist.
2) OLLIE TWOHILL – Washed Away
OLLIE TWOHILL‘s new single, Washed Away, is a hard one to ignore. It’s got all the elements of an anthem: The verses are crisp, the chorus is catchy, and the guitar riffs are so good you’ll want to learn them by heart.
“Washed Away” was written in response to the catastrophic floods in Australia in 2022, which affected Ollie’s hometown of Murwillumbah and progressively spread across the whole of Australia in the past 12 months.
”During the cleanup phase, I was working in a local bottle shop (liquor store) which was one of the few shops open in town. For seven days, there was limited power, no internet, no access to banks and limited food supplies. At night after cleaning up all day, people would meet up at the hotel to have a feed and drink and share their stories and experiences.”
It’s got a lot of power—the vocals are strong and clear, and the instrumentals are well-balanced between guitars, bass and drums. The track also has a great tempo that keeps things moving along nicely throughout the whole song.
If you’re looking for some music that’ll stick with you for days after listening—and if you want a taste of what’s coming next from this talented artist—check out Washed Away on Spotify or visit OLLIE TWOHILL’S website!
3) POLSKY – Song For The Silver Surfer
POLSKY is a singer-songwriter from the UK who creates a unique sound that is at once classic and modern. His music is inspired by his native culture, and it perfectly captures the nostalgia of the music of his youth.
This song reflects on the pain of losing love as you reach your autumnal years, and more specifically; how will we end up dating when we are older, and where will we go from here? The song ‘Song for the Silver Surfer’ laments the ageing process whilst offering optimism about the future of love still to come.
The song is influenced by orchestral downtempo pop of the early 00s, with forlorn indolence as PolSky sings “These are the silver surfer days, I’ll silver surf my winter days away”.
Imagine a room full of hungover Blur, Jarvis Cocker and Divine Comedy reminiscing about their glory days over tepid cups of tea in a seaside greasy spoon café owned by the London Symphony Orchestra, reminiscing about days gone by
The official video for the song for the Silver Surfer was directed by Grammy Award-winning music video director Jamie Thraves
4) SAIL CASSADY – Hiding In Vancouver
Sexuality. Mental Health. Consciousness. Aside from these themes, there are many others that run through the music of flamboyant indie-rock artist ‘Sail Cassady‘, who hails from Victoria, British Columbia. He is like a queer-friendly version of U2 tinged with a touch of The Pogues.
”Hiding in Vancouver”, a song that is equally romantic and poetic as Leonard Cohen’s Suzanne is the first in a series of powerful LGBTQ2S-centric singles that will be released throughout this year.
This is a song from the past, about two lovers who were in love in Vancouver. Discreetly walking down the streets of the city, as if they were in a dream, they seek out a place to belong. It is a sensual and wildly erotic song that is alive with passion.
“..Lie in the forest, steam starts forming like ribbons, apparitions of flames, envelop..”
5) SAGE WESLEY – Rock (Right Now)
Sage Wesley is a pop artist from Columbia, SC. His latest single, “Rock (Right Now),” is a perfect example of his musical style: electronic pop with a commercial vocal dance vibe.
He has a unique sound that blends electronic pop with commercial vocal dance music, with a dash of R&B and soul for good measure. His single “Rock (Right Now)” is an upbeat track that will have you dancing to the beat in no time.
In honour of Valentine’s Day, Gemnïy, an electro-pop R&B artist, released his latest single in February 14th called “Rock (Right Now).” The track is a prelude to Gemïny’s upcoming EP My Dark Twisted Valentine, which is due for release at the beginning of September.
6) BAAJ & BAAJ – I Can’t Think
BAAJ & BAAJ is a French musician who is currently based in Cognac. He released his latest single I Can’t Think, which is an indie pop track that is sure to get you in the mood for some good old-fashioned fun.
The artist’s sound has been described as an indie pop/rock hybrid with tons of synths and a commercial appeal. Their music has been compared to that of The Bird and the Bee and Lily Allen, but BAAJ & BAAJ have a more polished sound than either of those artists, with a more modern flair.
I think this track would be great on any summer playlist or even just as background music at a hangout. It has all the elements of what makes good pop music: catchy melodies, an upbeat rhythm, and memorable lyrics
BAAJ & BAAJ’s single “I Can’t Think” is one of the best songs out there right now if you’re looking for something new and different, yet still accessible to everyone. If you’re looking for some new music, check out his website or Spotify page!
7) AKALESHNUS – Drugs Riddim
AKALESHNUS is an artist from Florida, who makes a unique blend of rap rock and hip-hop. His debut single, Drugs Riddim shows off his skills as a rapper and songwriter.
The hip-hop artist Akaleshnus has released a brand new song called “Drugs Riddim” which features the hip-hop artists Juggernaut and Catalyst. It has a really great rap vibe and lyrics that make it a great listen.
The beat has a very catchy rhythm that will have you bobbing your head along with it before long. It’s also very reminiscent of rap-rock from the early 2000s, which is sure to appeal to fans of that genre. Even if you aren’t particularly into rap rock, this song will still get stuck in your head for days!
If you’re looking for some new music that combines rap rock with hip-hop beats then AKALESHNUS should be one of your top choices! Check out “Drugs Riddim” on Spotify now! And don’t forget to visit his website!
8) J. MATTHEWS – For You
J. MATTHEWS is a pop artist from North Haven, CT who has been creating music for some time now. His new single, “For You,” is an indie pop love song that will have you dancing in your bedroom with the lights turned off.
‘For You’ is the third song on his upcoming EP Courage, a collection of four songs that explores the idea of finding love even when you least expect it.
He wrote the song after he met a girl and felt an instant connection with her, which led him to get the ideas for the song. During that period of time, Matthews had given up on finding love, and that is when he met the love of his life.
Matthews explains: “Everyone has an image in their heads of what their ideal partner would be, and we hope and pray that we find that person someday. We’ve already fallen for them, but we don’t always get the chance to meet them in real life.”
9) GARY LIVERAKOS – Gary
Greek-American singer, songwriter, and composer Gary Liverakos bring you some blues rock!
Having formed a band at the age of sixteen, Gary began playing in bars and clubs around the area. During his twenties, he moved to the U.S. and joined multiple bands, touring extensively across the country. It has taken Gary years to hone his craft, and now he wants to share it with the world.
But it’s the classic sound of Gary’s voice that really stands out—a warm baritone that combines power with just the right amount of grit. The album features 10 tracks of classic hard rock and blues-infused rock ‘n roll, each one bursting with the energy that made these genres so popular in the first place.
With his debut album, Gary, he offers a candid look at his life that is sure to resonate with anyone who has ever felt lost in their search for identity or who has ever tried to find it through a variety of means.
The lyrics of this song are thoughtful and relatable, and Gary’s powerful voice will captivate viewers from all walks of life. There are ten songs on this album that mix different genres, from blues to pop to rock, so you’re sure to find something to your taste in this album!
10) HERDS – Station Of The Cross
From the ashes of an alt-rock band called ‘the amber herd’ came HERDS, a group of musicians who have honed the sound of yesteryear into a forward-thinking instrument of the future.
In this single, the post-punk/prog/psych band HERDS from Nottingham (UK) is introducing you to what is to come in their forthcoming album.
With swirling layers of synth sounds and reverberant guitars, this upbeat bouncy song is the perfect blend of catchy guitars and relentless drums and bass to set the mood.
It’s not hard to imagine being at a festival with this track playing over the loudspeakers—it’s got all the energy of good old-fashioned rock ‘n roll!
The track is the part new wave, part classic rock, and part psychedelic pop; it’s got a unique sound that’s sure to keep you coming back for more.