5 DIY Bands to Watch, Vol. V – Copies, Plastic Animals, Carson, Monkeybird, Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs

copies-band-brazil During the past few months, IRC has published dozens of posts that highlight promising DIY and small label indie bands to watch, including the 5 DIY Bands to Watch series. For the fifth installment of this popular series, the focus turns to highlighting overseas unsigned bands like Copies (Brazil), Plastic Animals (Scotland); Carson (Switzerland); Monkeybird (Norway); and Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs (Spain).

Copies – Sao Paulo, Brazil

Copies is a DIY garage rock/punk trio from São Paulo, Brazil, consisting of Christian Fontana on drums, Thiago Carvalho on vocals and guitars, and João Caetano on bass. On February 4th, the band released their debut EP, All The Clichés You Can Eat, that was mixed and mastered by legendary producer Ed Stasium (The Ramones, Mick Jagger, Talking Heads, The Misfits). When any band has someone of Stasium’s caliber at the helm, that’s a good indication of a band’s talent and promise, and one can only imagine that they will continue to get better with such valuable, expert input that someone like Stasium offers. There are not many bands that can say they recorded their debut EP with the former producer of The Ramones and Mick Jagger.

“Dial M For Motherfu*ker”Copies from All The Clichés You Can Eat – Feb. 4th

“One Together” Copies from All The Clichés You Can Eat

Copies’ Official Website
Copies on Facebook


Plastic Animals – Edinburgh, Scotland

Plastic Animals is an alternative punk band from Scotland. Formed in Edinburgh in 2006, the band began to play local gigs and soon established a name for themselves in the local scene and eventually throughout the U.K. Their sound is heavy, melodic and atmospheric. Plastic Animals has previously opened for bands like P.S. I Love You, Milk Maid, The Scottish Enlightenment, Molly Wagger, PAWS, and The Douglas Firs, and consider among their top musical Influences artists like Grandaddy, Dinosaur Jr, Yo La Tengo, Sonic Youth, Kurt Vile, My Bloody Valentine, Guided By Voices and Deerhunter.

“Ghosts”Plastic Animals from Automaton EP – June 6th

“Yellowcraig”Plastic Animals from Automaton EP

Plastic Animals Official Website


Carson – Luzern, Switzerland

Carson is an alternative stoner rock trio based in Luzern, Switzerland, but originally hails from Auckland, New Zealand, where it was founded by frontman Kieran Mortimer-Jones in 2009. The line-up was tweaked a few times before the then four-piece band went on tour throughout the small island nation. Throughout 2010, they built a reputation as a buzz band across New Zealand. But it was in 2011, when Carson released a seven-track EP, that they began to receive extensive national radio exposure.

Without explanation, Jones suddenly moved to Switzerland at the height of the band’s popularity, where he constructed a completely new trio of musicians, and kept the band name Carson, which is an unusual move since the original band was fairly popular in New Zealand, only includes the founding member and they’re based in Europe. Plus, it makes it that much harder to search for information online about the band. Nevertheless, the new Carson has found some success in Switzerland, an endeavor that was recently enhanced with the release of their self-titled album last December. The band’s influences include Truckfighters, Queens of the Stone Age, Led Zepplin, Kyuss, and Soundgarden.

“Come”Carson from Carson

“I Guess”Carson from Carson

Triple-shot: “Chlorine Boogie”Carson from Carson

Monkeybird – Harstad, Norway

From northern Norway comes the indie folk rock duo, Monkeybird, who are surprisingly practically unknown to even hard-core DIY indie music listeners. Formed in late 2011, the duo features Polarfox Records‘ founder Dan Slettevolden, along with his long-time creative cohort, producer and multi-instrumentalist Paal André Brekkaas. Their debut album, Born to Roam, was released on September 21, 2012 in the Europe.   We got a hold of two of the tracks from the album, which you can stream below. Monkeybird has real potential and is now a bright blip on our indie music radar. The duo list among their main musical influences as Neil Young, Bob Dylan, The Kinks, Fleetwood Mac, Sparklehorse, The Beatles and Daniel Johnston. That’s a solid and diverse compendium of artists and bands to draw inspiration from for any musician, and you can hear hints of some of those influences in “Born to Roam” and “Release.”

“Born to Roam” – Monkeybird from Born to Roam – Sept. 21st

“Release” – Monkeybird from Born to Roam

Monkeybird on Facebook


Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs – Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona DIY lo-fi band Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs deliver their unique brand of genre mixing by blending indie rock, chill wave, folk, punk and garage on their sophomore album II, creating spacious, dynamic, enthralling and rhythmic music on studio recordings and during live performances. Síctor Valdaña and The Check This Outs was born in January 2010 as a one-man project that soon evolved into a trio. Only months after forming, the band was tapped to perform at the A Viva Veu showcase (Primavera Sound) and were even featured in the Festival Hoteler’s promotional video. True to form, the band embraces DIY ethos, recording tracks in their basement with clunky gear, shoe-string budgets and endless hours of rehearsals. One clear indication of their independent status is the unconventional duration of their songs, ranging from 20 seconds to six minutes. The band listed their top musical influences as The Replacements, Jawbreaker, NOFX, The Who, Bauhaus, and Eels.

“I’m Drying Up”Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs from II

“Spark”Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs from II

Sictor Valdana and The Check This Outs on Last FM

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