Food & Drink

The 50 Bands Rocking Seattle Music Right Now

Are you up on Seattle's music scene? Test your knowledge with these local bands

By Brangien Davis & Jake Uitti September 8, 2014

0914musicmain

This article originally appeared in the September 2014 issue of Seattle magazine.

What’s your favorite current Seattle band? If you have trouble answering (or if you draw a blank after Macklemore), we’re not going to judge. But we are going to suggest it’s time to check in with the city’s thriving indie music scene. New local bands are exploring sounds, blurring genre boundaries (though we’ve wrestled them into categories here) and playing vibrant live shows all over town (see our Live Music Venue guide). Even with this sampler of 50 bands, we haven’t scratched the surface of Seattle music. Listen right here—where you can stream songs from all 50 bands—and also try tuning in to KEXP (the city’s unsurpassed discovery engine for local music) for a whole week. Soon enough, you’ll have an answer to the above question—and you might just go on and on.

Peruse our list of local bands below, divided up by genre. Plus the Best Live Music Venues in Seattle where you can rock out and throw your hands up in the air.

AMERICANA/ALT-COUNTRY
AKA indie folk, y’allternative, roots music, chamber folk, neo-folk, country rock, outlaw rock, alt-folk, twang, blues, haunted boogie, folk rock, blues rock, swing, honky-tonk, swamp stomp…

INDIE ROCK
AKA garage rock, roots rock, blues rock, alt-rock, alt-blues, hard rock, riot grrrl, post-punk, doom pop, fuzzy, shoegaze, pop rock, blues rock, ambient rock…

INDIE POP
AKA chamber pop, dream pop, power pop, pop punk, cosmic folk rock, eclectic, retro, lounge, girl group, avant-garde, electro-acoustic, orchestral pop, ambient rock…

SOUL
AKA R&B, gospel, Afro-soul, hip-hop, funk, electro-soul, neo-soul, raw soul, world fusion, post-jazz, soul hip-hop…

 

ELECTRONIC/DANCE
AKA electro-pop, synthpop, ambient, indie pop, DJ, electro-ambient, electronica, techno, dubstep, house, chillwave, synthwave, new wave, electro-house, folktronica…

HIP-HOP/RAP
AKA beats, R&B, pop, funk, trip hop, dub, bass, experimental hip-hop, hip-hop soul, Afrobeat, underground hip-hop, alt-rap, abstract hip-hop…

PSYCHEDELIC
AKA drone, trippy, trance, trip hop, chillout, ambient, doom, space rock, gothic, sci-fi, psych rock, dream rock, ’60s rock, experimental hip-hop, darkwave…

INSTRUMENTAL GROOVE
AKA funk, soul, Afrobeat, progressive, ambient, world, cinematic, funk orchestral, deep funk, rare groove, world fusion, free jazz, jam, improvisation, post-jazz…

Follow Us

Dark Emotions, Lighthearted Interactions

Dark Emotions, Lighthearted Interactions

Whim W’Him presents two emotion-inducing premieres to close out the season

Last weekend, choreographer Olivier Wevers stood on the stage at Cornish Playhouse, asking the audience to drop their preconceived notions and open their hearts to art...

Abrupt Write Turn

Abrupt Write Turn

Zachary Kellian’s decision to pursue a new career nets him recognition

Zachary Kellian ditched a career he loved, as he puts it, “to live out a dream.”

Finding Place in Pictures

Finding Place in Pictures

Artist Sky Hopinka’s first solo museum exhibit in the northwest showcases his creative approach to language and identity

“I had cassette tapes and workbooks, but it was hard because I was living in Washington, and my tribal language has roots in Wisconsin,” Sky Hopinka says. Learning alone, he could listen to prerecorded Hocak phrases and practice writing letters and words, but an essential component was missing — another person to speak with. Photo

Feeding Ghosts to Free Them

Feeding Ghosts to Free Them

Artist Tessa Hulls creates a revealing graphic novel to help her deal with childhood trauma

Seattle artist Tessa Hulls’ new graphic novel Feeding Ghosts is a deeply stirring narrative of loss, mental illness, and intergenerational trauma. She says that she wrote it to answer this question: What broke my family? Much of the book is about repetition, and how three generations of women in Hulls’ family were emotionally crippled by