The Top 5 Current Alt bands is not a subjective list.    Bands can be rated based on the quality of their output and how receptive the people are to their music.  Plenty of people will say their indie band is the best but they are not being realistic to standards.  These bands rise to the top because of the amount of work and effort that they put into their music.  They are essentially the most talented at producing music that people want to listen to.  It doesn’t have to sound the same, but these bands produce top notch music.


The Top 5 Alt Bands


 5. Bastille

bastille-600x450Dan Smith chose the name Bastille because his birthday is the same as Bastille Day.   The 4 person group formed in London in 2010.  Not much was heard from this band until the release of Pompeii in February 2013.  Pompeii promptly became one of the top songs of the year and has currently over 92 million listens on Spotify.  To give you an idea of how big this is, Roar by Katy Perry has 90 million.    Their first studio album Bad Blood was released in March and it’s safe to say that it was one of the best alternative albums of the year.  Bastille isn’t just a one hit wonder. Songs like Things We Lost In The Fire, Bad Blood, These Streets, and Weight of Living are all awesome tracks.   With 526,804 Spotify followers, this band has too big of a following to overlook for this list.


4. Awolnation

Aaron Bruno of Awolnation

Aaron Bruno of Awolnation

I truly would like to put Awol at #1 but the lack of catalog keeps me holding them back.  Aaron Bruno is intense and the music is even more so.  I’ve seen them twice in concert and both times the music lifts the concert to unforeseen levels.  The music is so in your face, these songs kick ass, I’m feeling pumped listening to them, I think I may have seizure.  It’s a feeling that other bands not only don’t, but can’t generate.  Sail, Awol’s most popular song, currently have over 100 million listens on Spotify and the band has 458k followers.  Megalithic Symphony was released in 2011 and only a few new tracks have been released since then.  The band said that they will release a 2nd studio album “sometime in 2014.”  A tidbit on the band’s name, “In an interview with Kristin Houser of the LA Music Blog, he stated that he “would leave without saying goodbye because it was just easier, so that’s where the name Awol [slang from the military acronym for Absent Without Ordered Leave] came from.”


3. Foster the People

Cover art of Foster the People's new Album Supermodel - Available Mar 18th

Cover art of Foster the People’s new Album Supermodel – Available Mar 18th

A highly anticipated album called Supermodel is being released on March 18th and I’m Pumped (up kicks) for it.   The song Coming of Age has already been released as a single and it was a nice tease to what is going to drop.  Foster the People has released a total of 11 songs currently.  Only 11.  Amazingly all 11 are quality songs which is why this album is so heavily anticipated.  Foster said in November 2013 that the new album is “more organic and more human”.     Foster the People’s following on Spotify has climbed to 865k followers with Pumped Up Kicks getting more than 63 million listens.  If the album doesn’t live up to expectations, Mark Foster will be one sad pup.


2. Young the Giant

young-the-giantI should be most ridiculed for this pick on my list.  Young is the least well known on this list but I’m so floored by their second album that I have to bump them this high.  Anagram is my favorite song of the new year followed by Mind Over Matter.  The pace of the songs are so awesome that I find myself nodding along just feeling the song.  They lyrics are all understandable and mean something which adds to it.  What I’m most excited about is the songs I named aren’t even the most popular on the album.  It’s About Time and Crystalized have already been mentioned on bigger a scale.  I sometimes don’t even get to the later part of the album which sucks for me.   Adding to the their first album which had many hits as well, this band is going to turn into Old the Giant.  To be consistent with this post, they have 284k Spotify followers and Cough Syrup has 17 million listens.


1. Imagine Dragons

Imagine DragonsThis is the easiest #1 there is right now and you should all learn the name Dan Reynolds, the lead singer of Imagine Dragons.  Night Visions was the 4th best selling album of 2013 and Radioactive was the most listened to song of 2013 with 174 million listens on Spotify.    I’m not sure people understand how good Night Visions is.  It could become the 4th best selling album on Radioactive and It’s Time alone.  People don’t even know about the rest of the album.  The deluxe edition of Imagine Dragons has 15 tracks and 15 tracks are wonderful.  I still listen to this album.  I use Imagine Dragons as my Spotify radio.  Did I mention they blew the doors in with this remix of Radioactive with Kendrick Lamar at the Grammy’s?   These guys do it all and are the best band out at the moment.  They plan to hit the studio this year but no date of a new album is announced.  What separates this band is the lyrics to their music.  Some of my most memorable lines from their songs are “the path to heaven run through miles of clouded hell” and “don’t wanna let you down, but I am hell bound.”