There’s a chill in the air, leaves are starting to change and the sun is sinking below the horizon earlier and earlier: fall is here.
While it can be hard to cope with for some, others (like myself) embrace the cozy sweaters, gorgeous foliage and warm comfort foods. Whether you are ready to embrace the imminent change of season, or are still on the fence about this whole “cooler weather thing,” here are some indie songs that will have you longing to brave the chill to explore.
Equipped with the essential thermos of coffee, buffalo-check flannel shirt and this playlist, you are ready for anything the season throws at you.
Jake Bugg – “Hearts That Strain”
The “bad boy of indie” from Nottingham is back again with a brand new album, out Sept.1, with his trademark manipulation of traditional folk.
It is entirely possible you know one of his songs, even if his name doesn’t ring a bell. His reflective love ballad, “Simple As This,” was featured on “The Fault In Our Stars” soundtrack.
“Hearts That Strain” is the title track off of Bugg’s most recent project and has a layered, western guitar beginning that conjures the image of a gunslinging Clint Eastwood about to duel in the middle of a dusty town on an ominously cloudy day. The lyrics tell the tale of a man fighting his thoughts and possible psychosis. Bugg’s voice definitely takes a page from one of his largest influences, Bob Dylan, though his arrangements are flavored more in the style of Eric Clapton.
More by Artist: “Simple As This,” “Lightning Bolt,” “Indigo Blue,” “In the Event of My Demise”
Birdtalker – “Graveclothes”
Originally formed by married couple Dani and Zack Green, Birdtalker has only been on the scene since 2012.
Their six song release, “Just This,” has been around less than a year, and shows promise for the band. For those that are all-too-ready for Halloween, this song should especially tickle your fancy. An energetic song about forgetting your worries and overcoming depression, one can’t help but picture an old skeleton cartoon dancing along.
More by Artist: “Heavy,” “Blue Healer,” “Just This”
Sarah Jarosz – “House of Mercy”
Sarah Jarosz is one of the most prominent and talented women in folk today. Her masterful use of traditional americana instruments, such as banjo, mandolin and acoustic guitar, combined with her airy, softly twainy voice is absolutely addicting. If there remains any doubt about her instrumental prowess, she was jamming onstage with the likes of Rick Scaggs at the age of 12.
“House of Mercy” is off of Jarosz’s latest release from 2016, “Undercurrent,” and has quickly risen to be one of her most popular songs since. The harmonizing and edged voice tells her unfaithful lover to forget trying to change her mind, because she is never going to forgive him: “I can hear you knocking on the door, it won’t ever open for you anymore.”
More by Artist: “Over the Edge,” “Build me Up From Bones,” “Mile On the Moon”
Mykey – “Running with the Wolves”
Very little is known of the band Mykey because their new album, “Faces,” just released in July of this year.
What I can say is, I absolutely adore this song. It has that “let’s take a roadtrip/hike into the mountains” vibe to it. It’s equal parts lively and dreamy, and pairs well with adventures or relaxing at home.
Look out for these guys, and feel free to follow them on Spotify — they are currently at a grand total of 25 subscribers.
More by Artist: “Ups & Downs,” “Maybe I Was the One,” “Monsters In the Dark”
For an extended playlist to improve your fall mood, find the NDSU Indie Songs of Fall playlist on Spotify.