You Should Know: David Bronson


From:  New York City, NY

For People Who Like: Cat Stevens’s voice, The Mountain Goats, Jethro Tull (without the flute), soulful and energetic songwriting.

Check Him Out At:

David Bronson joins a list of modern singer-songwriters that aren’t afraid to add a little bite to their songwriting, and he’s all the more better for that. Bronson is a singer-songwriter and producer based out of NYC who grew up on classic rock albums and tries to translate, both as a musician and producer, the sonic power of a whole rock album into his songs.

And yes, his beard is awesome.

David’s current project is a 22-song cycle broken up into two separate albums forming The Long Lost Story, a chronicle of a young man’s recent lost of a love and his search for a meaning in its end and how to move on. The Story is available now, and its prequel, The Long Lost, will be released soon.

Click here to stream his debut album Story.

Here’s the music video for “Times”.

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You Should Know: Monks of Mellonwah, EndAnd, and Willie Ames

Alright I’m cheating a little bit today. I have multiple artist that you should know about, and I’m putting them all together in one glorious post. All these bands are from independent music promotions, and you can go there to check out these bands along with plenty of other great talents.

Monks of Mellonwah

From: Sydney, Australia

For People Who Like: Incubus, good indie rock from the late 90s/early 2000s.



From: Brooklyn, NY

For People Who Like: Cloud Nothings, The Pixies, The Melvins, a lot of head-banging with their noise-rock.


Willie Ames

From: San Diego, CA

For People Who Like: Mark Knopfler, Lindsey Buckingham, Tom Petty, old time country n roots (banjo included)


You can find out more about these and other great bands via Independent Music Promotions. Its creator, James Moore, is also the author of a book of how to survive being an DIY artist in the 21st century. For more information on the book click here.

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You Should Know: The Sorry Shop

From: Rio Grande, Brazil

For People Who Like: The War On Drugs, Yuck, bands that sound like the 90s

Don’t You Love It When Bands Put Their Music Out For Free? – These guys think so – you can snag their entire album for free here!

With the new Smashing Pumpkins album out this week, I’ve been going all nostalgic on great 90s guitar rock. Luckily for me, and for you, The Sorry Shop satisfies this craving for great noisy guitar rock. They balance the pop-smarts of Pavement with the all out rock sound of Guided By Voices (with better production). There’s even a bit of britpop that I can hear within such songs as “Go On”, but sounding more like The Stones Roses over Oasis. On some songs they even sound like Explosions In The Sky with nice dreamy guitar work with plenty of space (“Cinderblocks” is a great example). A very likable young band that’s well on its way.

Like I said before, download their debut album for free here.

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You Should Know: Jeffers Win

From: New York City, New York

For People Who Like: The Magnetic Fields, Vampire Weekend, preppy college music made by college kids.

Coincidence? I Think Not: There is one other awesome band that is made up of Columbia college kids – they’re called Vampire Weekend.

My buddy up in Columbia has a band that you should know about.  Jeffers Win is made up of Columbia students who sound like the east coast scholars you would expect, which is a great thing.  A smart blend of clever lyrics and instrumentation is what you’ll get from this band that has a very appealing sound.

Download their debut EP here and check out “Budapest Princess” below.

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You Should Know: Ed Sheeran

From: West Yorkshire, England

For People Who Like: Matt Nathanson, Jason Mraz, good heartfelt and funny lyrics

Recommended Listen: + (not avaliable on American iTunes)

Ed Sheeran might not sound familiar here in the US, but over in the UK he has made a name for himself.  His breezy singing and witty songwriting is easy to like, and his music videos are especially good.  Make sure to check out Ed when he makes an appearance at SXSW, and hopefully he’ll come to America more often!

Enjoy this funny video for “Drunk”, and see what can happen when your wingman is a cat.

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You Should Know: Mr. Dream

Mr. Dream is: Adam Moerder (guitar, singer) Matt Morello (bass) and Nick Sylvester (drums)

From: Brooklyn, New York

For People Who Like: Pixies, Nirvana, anything Lo-Fi, a little weirdness to some solid rock n roll.

Recommended Listen: Trash Hit

Fun Fact: Moerder and Sylvester are former Pitchfork writers.

Is Their Name Taken From The Character From Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out?: No idea, but I would love the band more if that was true.

With the release of Cloud Nothing’s latest album giving off good vibrations, it’s only fitting that their supporting band for their upcoming tour is just as exciting.  The band is Mr. Dream, a Brooklyn trio whose aggressive yet tuneful sound will feel like a good and much needed kick in the ass (you don’t hear that about a lot of rock bands lately do you?).  While Cloud Nothings carries on the tradition of Lo-Fi 90s greats such as Pavement and Guided By Voices, Mr. Dream’s sound is a near perfect blend of the weirdness of the Pixies and the hidden pop-smarts of Nirvana, all while sounding gloriously raw and Lo-Fi.

Make sure to pick up the band’s next release Fatherland EP when it comes out later this month.  Mr. Dream will also be touring with Cloud Nothings and will be at South By Southwest this year.  If you can, go check out these guys.

“What A Mess”

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You Should Know: The War on Drugs

Band Name – The War on Drugs

For People Who Like – My Bloody Valentine, Bruce Springsteen, Blonde On Blonde-era Bob Dylan

Recommended Listen – Slave Ambient

Interesting Fact – Kurt Vile was one of its founding members, playing guitar until 2008.  This band is also signed to Secret Canadian label, which is located out of Bloomington!

If Jack Kerouac were still alive, he would of loved The War on Drugs.  This is American road music for the 21st century hippie – trippy guitars with a steady beat with tales that have an American overtone.  If the band took away all its psychedelics, they would sound like The Band or Bruce Springsteen, but the acid guitars and the layers of sound works for the band.  So the next time you and your cool indie friends road trip cross-country, The War on Drugs should be on your playlist.

Their latest album, last year’s Slave Ambient, was a huge success, so expect more to come from these guys.  Here’s my favorite track off that album.

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You Should Know: Lana Del Rey

Real Name – Elizabeth “Lizzy” Grant

For People Who Like – The National, The Velvet Underground when they had Nico, mysterious sexy women who like to play video games.

Recommended Listen – Video Games EP

Interesting Fact – Her stage name is a combination of the old Hollywood actress Lana Turner and the Ford Del Rey car.

It’s not even 2012 yet, but I think I already know who we’ll be talking about for most of next year.  Her name is Elizabeth Grant aka Lana Del Rey, and she’s made a name for herself in the indie world with her single “Video Games”.  Del Rey, a self-described “gangsta Nancy Sinatra”, has the kind of look and power in her voice to demand your full attention.  When I think of the Velvet Underground song “Female Fatale”, I’m convinced Lou Reed was singing about this girl – she’s mysterious and beautiful, but she could probably kick your ass and tear out your heart.

Below is the music video for the song “Video Games”, one of my favorite songs from 2011.  She plans to release a new album in late January titled Born to Die, and you can check out the first single here.  If Born to Die is as good as I think It’ll be from its first single, then we should be hearing a lot about Del Rey in 2012.

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You Should Know: Delta Spirit

Band Name- Delta Spirit

Location- Long Beach, California

Years Active- 2005-present

For People Who Like- My Morning Jacket, Dawes, The Avett Brothers, Simple Americana-music with great lyrics.

Recommended Listen – Ode To Sunshine

What do you get if My Morning Jacket wasn’t so weird and listened to more of The Band?  You get Delta Spirit.  This California five-piece band is from the west coast, but they sound like they’re from America’s heartland.  The songs sound like they could have been written decades ago, but the band’s creative blend of tradition songwriting and indie attitude makes the songs sound fresh and new.  What really stands out with this band are the lyrics.  All the songs have good stories and really make you think, something that is missing from a lot of popular songs these days.

With good storytelling and great energy, these guys strike me as a modern day incarnation of The Band (they even have a drummer that sings!).  My current favorite song of theirs is The Waits Room EP version of “The Devil Knows You’re Dead”, but there wasn’t a video of it on youtube 🙁 However, check out “Streetwalker” below, from their fantastic 2008 album Ode To Sunshine.

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You Should Know: Free Energy

Band Name – Free Energy

Location – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Years Active – Since 2008

For People Who Like – Cheap Trick, The Hold Steady, positive Rock N Roll

Recommended Listen – Stuck On Nothing

If anyone questions whether Rock N Roll is dead or not, listen to this band and you’ll know it’s alive and well.  This Philadelphia band has a classic sound reminding me of classic 70s guitar rock, but it doesn’t sound old.  This band has loud guitars and positive energy, and in a time when most rock bands follow the moody indie sound this is refreshing to hear.

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