Top DIY Singles from Rare Monk, Suzerain, The Rosy Shades, Action Jets, Moths & Locusts, Silicon, Unknown Components

It never ceases to amaze us. That is, the number of DIY singles and albums that are dropped each month by unsigned artists and bands that get little to no coverage on popular indie rock blogs and music sites. As our long-time readers and listeners know well, IRC constantly publishes impressive music from talented musicians and bands that even die-hard fans of indie rock have never heard before. The past week’s DIY releases are a clear example of that.

Even though they’ve opened for bands like Yeasayer, Starfucker and Mt. St. Helens Vietnam Band, and been featured in a number of publications and blogs, mainly in Oregon, Portland psych pop quintet Rare Monk remain an unsigned, and largely under the radar, band since starting out in 2009. Their eclectic style of music, covering genres such as indie, rock, pop, and psych, is experimental and compelling, adding violins to the forefront of their songs surrounded by swirling guitars and a solid rhythm section. This week the band dropped their new EP, Death By Proxy, which they’ll be going on the road to promote in a couple of weeks. Rare Monk plans to drop a full length release in February, followed by a nationwide tour. Their major musical influences include Modest Mouse, Phoenix, Of Montreal, Bjork, Sigur Ros, and Bosnian Rainbows.

“Death By Proxy”Rare Monk from Death By Proxy EP

“Underground”Rare Monk from Death By Proxy EP

London Band Suzerain Record with Grammy-Winning Producer on New EP

Suzerain is a five-piece London alternative rock band formed in 2004. Earlier this year, Suzerain entered the studio to record new material under the keen direction of Grammy-winning producer Steve Lyon (The Cure, Depeche Mode). The result is the impressive five-track EP, A Mirror Now, released earlier this week. The EP includes the standout single, “Frenzy,” a song that exemplifies the band’s well-honed blend of electro, indie and punk music. The release of their critically-acclaimed 2008 debut LP, Midnight In The Drawn City, received significant airplay in the U.K., which led to the band winning the Indie Award for Best Alternative Act. Even though the band have yet to make waves in the U.S., we predict it’s only a matter of time before they do, and cross the pond to tour across America. The band’s musical influences include Gary Numan, Franz Ferdinand, The Alarm, Hadouken, David Bowie, Placebo, Muse, and Bloc Party.

“Frenzy”Suzerain from A Mirror Now

“Down To The Sea”Suzerain from A Mirror Now


Tallahassee Band The Rosy Shades Premiere on Indie Rock Cafe

The members of the unsigned indie rock band, The Rosy Shades, originally met at an open mic night Tallahassee, Florida. For many weeks, all four members of the newly formed band performed individually until last year when two of the members, Tim Rock (vocals/guitar) and Nathan Louis (drums), decided to jam together in a local park. The chemistry between the two musicians was so strong that they set out to recruit two additional open mic performers, Jon Little (lead guitar) and Jason Borntreger (bass), and The Rosy Shades was born. Louis told IRC that he would go to open mic night ever week and play a drum solo, Rock would play guitar and sing a few songs, and Borntreger “angrily stomped the stage while strumming a ukelele.” Little was recruited later on from his home in nearby Jacksonville.

For a band that is only a year in the making, The Rosy Shades, sound like they’ve been playing together for much longer, and we believe demonstrate great potential. They’ve made a splash in the Tallahassee/Jacksonville alternative rock scene thanks to their unique, tight knit, energetic songs featuring Little’s electrifying guitar riffs, the perfectly fitting lead vocals and rhythm guitar of Rock, impressive drumming by Louis and precise timing of Borntreger’s bass playing. As we were reviewing DIY releases dropped in the past week, it became apparent to us, after listening a number of times to the two tracks they sent in, that this was more than just a new rock band on our admittedly gigantic radar of artists, but rather a band that is poised to break out nationally. Both songs featured below are from the band’s self-released EP, Morning Spirit, that officially dropped last week. The band’s major musical influences include Led Zeppelin, Kings of Leon, The Beatles, The Allman Brothers, and The Ataris.

“The Existentialist”The Rosy Shades from Morning Spirit EP

“Melissa”The Rosy Shades from Morning Spirit EP

Listen to other songs from the EP, like “Supersonic” and “High Again” via The Rosy Shades Soundcloud page

Action Jets is a garage rock/power pop band from Phoenix, Arizona. We really dig their new single, “Rock Like Rollard,” which pays homage to the frontman of the popular indie rock band Guided By Voices. The AZ trio claims to “exploit weaknesses in its rivals, spews energy, spit and vigor and renounces cool, detached irony all in one go.” Dani Molino is an Spanish born alternative americana, folk, rock singer/songwriter based in London who, along with his band, has performed at some of the most legendary venues in London, and placed second at the 2012 International Emergenza Festival. If you enjoy, long psychedelic jams, Immerse yourself in Moths and Locusts‘ 8-minute sprawling, guitar rock epic, “Nero’s Eulogy.”

Silicon is an 18-year-old Ottawa resident who has been experimenting with genre-blending electronic, dance, hip hop, house and chillwave music for a couple of years now, and he, Landan Brawley, sent us in a couple of tracks from his latest EP. Silicon is known for his remix work for major artists’ tracks such as SBTRKT, Justice, Grizzly Bear and Skrillex. Below is his track for “Lush” from Relax. You can also check out some of his other work via the Silicon Soundcloud. Plus, listen to new singles from new releases out in the past week by Eden Warsaw and Unknown Component.

“Rock Like Pollard”Action Jets from Make Time for the Action Jets

“Ain’t Got No Home”Dani Molino from Ain’t Got No Home

“Nero’s Surgery”Moths and Locusts from Escape from Sector C

“Lush”Silicon from Relax EP

“Diamonds”Eden Warsaw from Diamonds EP

“The Invisible Line”Unknown Components from Blood vs. Electricity

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