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Indie/Alternative Music

Frightened Rabbit “Pedestrian Verse” – Album Review

Canvasback/Atlantic (2013)

Let me start by saying that in my humble opinion, Frightened Rabbit are one of indie-rock’s best-kept secrets, in that those of us who are fans know they should be reaching a much wider audience. It’s also my humble opinion that their fourth album Pedestrian Verse is set to change all that. At the very least, these Scottish rockers have carved out a solid niche for themselves, with a fan […]

The MIMO Interview: Shout Out Louds

Stockholm-based indie-rock band Shout Out Louds have been steadily building a following across the world over the past decade, touring with such acts as Kings of Leon and The Strokes, and having key song placements in popular films and television shows such as How I Met Your Mother, One Tree Hill and Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist. They are currently preparing to release their fourth full-length album, Optica, due to […]

Tegan and Sara’s “Heartthrob”: Masterful Pop (Album Review)

Warner Bros (2013)

We’ve seen this coming for the past few of Tegan and Sara’s albums—an edging ever closer from coffeehouse indie to electro-pop. With their seventh full-length release Heartthrob, the twins’ transition is complete as they jump with all four feet into accessible, radio-friendly pop. For some fans (and certainly by formula), this move has all the earmarks of a total sellout. But I suppose that depends on perspective. As a Tegan […]

Ra Ra Riot Jumps into Synth-Pop with “Beta Love”: Album Review

Barsuk Records (2013)

For a band that has been around for less than five years, it might seem a bit early to think about reinventing. Ra Ra Riot started their journey solidly in the chamber-pop vein, combining indie rock with lush orchestrations—but for their new album Beta Love, they have jumped forward (backward?) with both feet into a modern-framed synth-pop with obvious 80’s New Wave influences. I happen to think it works; others […]

The MIMO Interview: Mindy Smith [2012 In Review]

Here’s another gem from the 2012 archives at MIMO–an interview with veteran Americana singer/songwriter Mindy Smith. For her new album released last year, Smith became one of a growing number of label artists to go indie, and during her interview she gave some interesting insights on that dynamic, which is why we’ve included this piece in our “2012 In Review” series. –Ed.   Mindy Smith began making waves in the […]

Up-And-Comers: Little Green Cars

Apparently there’s something about Dublin (the water, perhaps?) that tends to spawn international acts. (Anyone heard of Thin Lizzy? The Script? U2?) And as UK’s Mumford & Sons have proven, there also seems to be something about folk music from that part of the world that we Americans dig even more than our own folk music nowadays. (Maybe we’re just suckers for the accent—or maybe it reminds us of our […]

The MIMO Interview: ON AN ON

Last year, when established indie rock act Scattered Trees lost two of its key members (brothers Jason and Baron Harper), the remaining three band mates—frontman Nate Eisland, his wife Alissa Eisland, and Ryne Estwing—made a rather dramatic decision to lay down their decade-long moniker and sound, and start an all-new band. The new act ON AN ON has already been making waves in the blogosphere with the advance release of […]

The Lumineers “The Lumineers” –Album Review [2012 In Review]

Continuing our review of some of MIMO’s more interesting posts of 2012…last year was definitely a banner year for The Lumineers, coming out of nowhere to have a top charting hit song and two Grammy nominations. When the band first came on the radar of our indie correspondent Kim Phelps back in April, no one could have predicted they would have gone as far as they have. Looks like Kim […]

Indie Music Must-Listens of 2012

It’s that time of year again, when we look back at the past year and prepare for the coming one. 2012 was an inspiring year for indie/alternative acts; I don’t know about you, but I found personal favorites in many different musical styles and genres. The thing about indie music is that it’s nearly impossible to make a claim as to who is the best act, for the simple reason […]

Up-And-Comers: Unknown Mortal Orchestra

When punk/post hardcore outfit The Mint Chicks went into, um, retirement, guitarist Ruban Nielson thought he was pretty much done with music. I’m so glad he wasn’t. His dabblings in basement psych rock have created what we now know as Unknown Mortal Orchestra. Since their self-titled release last year, UMO has been building a solid following, not just in the U.S. but internationally as well (Nielson is from Portland, but […]

Solange “True”: Out Of the Shadows

Sharing a family bond/last name with a superstar can be a double-edged sword: it can provide instant exposure, but it can also cast a huge shadow that may never be dodged. Such has been the dilemma of pop songstress Solange (Knowles). Being Beyoncé’s younger sister definitely has its perks, but it also has the downside that everything Solange has done up to now has instantly been held for comparison against […]

Up-And-Comers: Guards

Since forming a couple of years ago in New York City, indie-rock outfit Guards has been getting a lot of attention in the blogosphere, garnering positive reviews from such outlets as Pitchfork and getting onto Spin Magazine’s “can’t miss” list for last year’s CMJ Music Festival after the release of their debut EP (available for free download here). Now, with a full-length release titled In Guards We Trust due out […]

Kate Nash Takes a Turn Toward Punk with “Death Proof” EP

Have 10p Records (2012)

Death Proof, the 5-song EP released this week by Kate Nash as a teaser for her upcoming album Girl Talk, is bound to raise a few eyebrows with at least some of her fans. While the British alternative singer-songwriter’s last album My Best Friend Is You took a turn from her original coffeehouse vibe toward more of a Motown/surf rock blend, Death Proof takes an even sharper turn into an […]

Up-and Comers: Alt-J

While UK-based act Alt-J is not actually a “new” band (they used to go by the moniker “Films”), they have recently been generating a lot of buzz worldwide over their unique combination of folk, alternative and electronic elements—a sound some are referring to as “folk-step.” Whatever you call it, I think it’s a highly catchy sound—and apparently a lot of other people do, too. The band’s debut album An Awesome Wave, […]

The MIMO Interview: Rachael Yamagata

Over the past decade, singer/songwriter Rachael Yamagata has become a well-known name in the indie/adult alternative scene with a slew of recognizable tunes like “Elephants” and “Starlight.” Her songs have appeared on many popular television shows such as The O.C. 30 Rock, How I Met Your Mother and Smallville, as well as films like Elizabethtown and Definitely, Maybe. She’s also collaborated with many other well-known artists such as Ray Lamontagne, […]