Manager and booker of the Cameo Gallery music venue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Jify Shah, shares his Top Ten Indie Bands on the Rise!
1. The London Souls (above): One of the tightest rock bands out there, The London Souls are a three piece powerhouse. I’ve seen these guys perform dozens of times and they never fail to deliver.
2. Deadbeat Darling:
Reminiscent of the power and energy of bands like the Police and U2, Deadbeat Darling boasts a strong front man with excellent vocals and a unique vibe.
3. Asa Ransom:
These guys are something special! Hands down the most innovative and edgy band out there right now, Asa Ransom is a true wonder and puts on a must-see show. Their style is indefinable, so keep track of them and try to catch a show when they’re in town.
4. Mon Khmer:
Reminiscent of Interpol, Secret Machines, and early Coldplay, Mon Khmer’s mixture of moody, groovy, and melancholic rock consistently makes me think of the word “effervescent.”
5. Drew Nix:
Not to be a snob, but I don’t have the time or the patience to listen to singer/songwriters sing about their life stories and emotions. (And there are way too many out there who do.) So it’s refreshing to see Drew Nix live because he simply, “gets it.” His music is evocative, with excellent lyrics and vocals, and sweet guitar rhythms — full of charisma.
6. Beach Fossils:
Happy, catchy, dance-y and bouncy. The first time they played at Cameo, we had them play their whole set over again.
7. Hank & Cupcakes:
Musically, Hank & Cupcakes sound like The Kills meets Madonna. Everytime I hang out with this band, some random person comes up to them and freaks out from the excitement of seeing them in person. I never see people today respond to musicians like the Hank & Cupcakes audience does.
8. The Albertans:
Their music is like a landscape. Imagine you’re on a train and you’re staring outside your window looking out; everything moves in this up and down theatrical way with a constant flow.
9. Bizi Gara:
Bizi Gara’s nomadic folk beats embody a peaceful soul that reminds me of Bob Marley. Tribal, seductive, roots inspired, and rhythmic, Bizi Gara’s show is a liberating experience — you’ll walk away from it feeling as if you’ve just finished a yoga session.
To those who want to get down and funky, Turkuaz are explosive. Think Talking Heads meet P-Funk.
Bonus Band: Mystery Roar
This band’s ’80s-influenced electro-synth pop transforms any space into a dance party. If you get to catch any of their shows, bring your dancing shoes. You’ll need them!
Jify Shah is the manager and booker of the music venue Cameo Gallery in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. He is also the owner of Revtone Recording Studios and Label. Shah currently resides in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.