Amsterdam Sound

20 Amsterdam bands you need to hear now

Thursday 19th October 2017

Amsterdam based artist, Pip Blom

Despite producing bands such as late '70s underground punks, The Ex, to the opinion-splitting yet undeniably influential, 2 Unlimited and their commercial success, Amsterdam is perhaps better known for its contributions to dance music, so we take a look at modern-day Amsterdam to ask which Amsterdam bands you need to hear now.

Pip Blom
An artist who already enjoys the beginnings of indie success in the UK and US, as well as her native Amsterdam, Pip Blom has toured the UK twice, counts Huw Stephens and Steve Lamacq among her champions and releases via indie label Nice Swan Records. Watch the video for Pip Blom's latest 'Babies Are A Lie' below.

Bram Wesdrop, aka AVI ON FIRE, has already amassed 750 thousand Spotify plays with his debut single 'Pearls' with an unconventional and distinctly European approach to making up-beat pop music. 

Steffen Morrison
With a modern update of the classic soul sound, Steffen Morrison's music also makes nods to the songs of The Rolling Stones and Lou Reed. Morrison's soul credentials have seen him perform as part of 'I'm A Soulman' the show based on the story of STAX Records.

Singer/songwriter Midas has been making music since the age of 12, attending The Conservatory of Amsterdam from age 16. In 2015 he appeared as a guest with Amsterdam country-rock band The Common Linnets on their Winter tour of that year, leading to further exposure, which brings us to 2017 when in April he released his debut album 'Heavy Moon'. Check out his latest single 'Caroline' below.

An indie-rock outfit hailing from Haarlem (just outside Amsterdam), PALMSY's upcoming outings include support slots with the likes of Royal Blood.

Youthful, fun, irreverent and lo-fi indie pop, EUT have a sound and ethos that will appeal to a good number of UK listeners with moments of early Blur. EUT's debut LP is expected in 2018. Watch the video for their latest 'Supplies'. 

Tape Toy
It's early days for Tape Toy, but initial demos are very promising. '90s indie rock influences and a punky DIY energy mix to create a band that would fit right into the current London scene. Check out their demo for 'Farmville' below.

Equal parts Madchester and 'Revolver' era Beatles, Yasmine are proud of the fact that they hurt their listeners' ears by playing pop songs too loud. To see how loud, listen to their debut EP 'Honey' and the sticky lead track 'Chocolate Fingers'.

Oh Thunder
An experimental arthouse electro-pop band who integrate harps and trombones into their recordings and live formation. Recommended for fans of Roisin Murphy and Little Dragon. Check out their latest 'WHO R U'.

Canshaker Pi
Tipped to break the UK very soon with their export-friendly alt-rock. Their authentic sound is perhaps owed at least in part to production skills from Steven Malkmus of Pavement. Watch their somewhat gory video lesson in garden maintenance 'Over' below.

In contrast to the dark grungey sound of Canshaker Pi, Phoam's approach to rock is a dreamier and much less distorted interpretation of the genre. With their crisp, airy sound you can almost hear the North Sea coast.

Silent War
Fast-paced, energetic indie rock that should please fans of the noughties indie revival. Silent War will release their 'ECHO' EP in 2018, but for now, listen to their latest track 'Nightfall'.

Describing themselves as an electronic vocoder duo, Jeroen Slutter and WJ have a Daft Punk-esque ambition to their dancefloor orientated tunes. The video for their debut single 'Heartbeats' conveys their live set-up of synths and liberal vocoder use.

Another Amsterdam band to impress critics and audiences beyond The Netherlands after only a couple of early releases, Dakota have a clean floating indie sound that will sit well alongside bands such as Goat Girl and The Big Moon, despite being less punk/distortion led. Watch the video for their wonderful song 'Icon'.

Try Acrobatics
Self-proclaimed 'synth vs guitar pop' band Try Acrobatics share their synth player Jeroen with the 8Pop lineup. For fans of Hot Chip and Hot Hot Heat. Listen to 'RSVP' below.

Keys & Copper
Chilled, poppy deep house augmented by impossibly smooth live sax and piano. Keys & Copper are a definite add for fans of Clean Bandit and the like. Listen to their recent track 'Come Back To Me!' to see what we mean.

Speeding garage/fuzz-rock from this Amsterdam three-piece that echo the lineage of The Stooges, Nirvana and similar low-tech noisemakers. Practise your dance moves against some Dutch scenery with their video for their song '22'.

Taking their name from the notorious night spot in Anthony Burgess/Stanley Kubrick's 'Clockwork Orange', thankfully Milkbar don't display any ultraviolent tendency in their upbeat indie rock songs such as 'The King', and 'Accident'.

Laid back feel-good guitar pop from this Dutch three-piece. Another band to boast musicians who have passed through The Amsterdam Conservatory of Music, Julius' exploits have included a tour of China undertaking live shows as well as guitar lessons for schools along the route, singing Chinese pop songs in Chinese and English.

An electronic duo who started out as a live reggae band before finding themselves more drawn to the EDM world, Cut_ make slick electro-vocal pop. Check out their track 'Tune In Tune Out' below.


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