Top 5 Nashville Bands Right Now
They don’t call it Music City for nothing. Nashville, Tennessee is hot on the heels of places like New York, London and Berlin to become one of the world’s capitals for breakout music. The wealth of bands itching to be discovered makes it an epicenter for talent in 2013--and it’s not just about big budget Country Music anymore. With a laidback attitude, tons of small, private venues and a built-in infrastructure of recording studios, Nashville is the perfect setting for groundbreaking bands looking to live cheap and cash in on big opportunities.
Former White Stripes frontman, Jack White has set up shop there, indicating that it’s not just small town up-and-comers who are paying attention to all the city has to offer. Nashville is next, and these are the bands that are really putting the city on the map. Here are the Top 5 Nashville Bands right now.
1. Kings of Leon
The Kings of Leon might as well be called the Kings of Southern Rock ‘n’ Roll. With a grammy, a handful of world tours, five successful studio albums under their belt and a sixth on the way, they’ve set the bar pretty high by settling in Nashville. Only time will tell how relocating to Tennessee will affect the three brothers, Jared, Caleb and Nathan, and their cousin Matthew Followill’s sound. Check out a live performance of “It Don’t Matter,” the first song from their upcoming album for a preview.
2. The Kingston Springs
The Kingston Springs are a four-piece band with a lead singer who sounds like he took a page or two out of Jack White’s book. They’ve got a brassy, rounded-out garage sound with heavy bass and a kick of youthful personality. Heavier rock songs like, “Sa Betise,” balance out sweeter, more romantic bluegrass jams like, “Lover.”Check out their sounds on Soundcloud and head to Dancin’ in the District in Nashville on July 18 for a live show.
3. Nikki Lane
Nikki Lane is like the modern-day version of Loretta Lynn, maybe with a little extra eye liner. Her old time country drawl and smoky voice make her lyrics about heartbreak, loneliness and desperation sound timeless. Her debut EP Walk of Shame has the structure of a retro rock ‘n’ roll album that would have sounded just as good in 1960 as it does now. It helps that the South Carolina native has the life experience of moving from New York to LA, and back to Nashville, giving her a vast range of influences and styles to blend into one perfect, bee hive-topped package.Pick up Walk of Shame on iTunes and check out her latest songs on Daytrotter.
4. Black Keys
After relocating from Akron, Ohio, to Nashville a few years ago, Grammy-award winning rockers, The Black Keys have become one of the city’s biggest rock ‘n’ roll claims to fame. Drawn to the city for its grit and authenticity, the band filmed their video for “Little Black Submarine,” in one of the most iconic venues in town--The Springwater Supper Club. While the modest, rundown venue is where many bands play shows early in their career, its a far cry from the Bridgestone Arena where the Keys will played a sold out show early in May.Catch the Black Keys on tour through mid-July.
5. Penicillin Baby
Self-described psych-rock band, Penicillin Baby offers up a guitar-heavy and reverb-drenched version of what surf rockers and new age jam bands like Neon Indian and Animal Collective have made popular over the course of the last few years. Backed by heavier guitars and more traditional rock and roll progressions, its easy to draw comparisons to legendary bands like The Doors and the Yardbirds who made the sound popular in the ‘60s. It’s clear that these guys can wield their instruments like pros, but their carefree vibe makes for easy listening and makes them sounds like the kind of people you’d want to spend a weekend in Nashville with.Pick up Penicillin Baby’s latest 3-track album Jams: Volume III on bandcamp for free!