Features

Start Your March with Bandcamp Friday and Pick Up Some Local Music!

DEHD – photo by Julian Ramirez

Bandcamp Fridays have been helping bands during the pandemic by waiving their usual fees on the very first Friday of the month. This fantastic monthly event has allowed more money to reach the artists and their labels, especially since tons of fans have flooded the website to support their favorites and keep great music going during these hard times. We’re rapidly approaching the year anniversary of the first Bandcamp Friday, which is unfortunate, but thankfully this tradition of purchasing music from artists will be continuing through May. So let’s get our fill of music this month with some great local artists!

Bandcamp Friday will be happening all day until midnight PDT tonight. If you’re unsure what time it all ends in your timezone, check isitbandcampfriday.com for exactly how much time you have left to jump in on the sales effort.

As with every edition of this feature, we’ve added a few more local acts that we highly suggest you check out. And don’t forget to head over to your favorite artists’ Bandcamp pages and see what they’ll be doing for today’s push to support quality music! And for those of you who have meticulously curated Spotify playlists, we suggest using Merch Table to see what artists are on Bandcamp so you can support directly.

Below is our running list of Chicago-based acts we definitely think you should check out if you haven’t already! We also recommend you check out some of the great compilations that help support various causes.  The SituationChicago compilation benefits 25 venues in the city and has tracks for the likes of Jeff Tweedy, Ric Wilson, Girl K, Rich Jones, Ovef Ow, The Curls, and tons more! Warm Violet is a 46 (!) song comp that benefits Chicago Community Jail Support and features a plethora of artists you should be listening to anyway!

Divino Nino – photo by Julian Ramirez

  • Divino Niño – Need some smooth and delectable tunes to soundtrack your evenings, then look no further than these amazing songs! Check out our review of their album Foam. They also just released a new single “Made Up My Mind” that really shows off the band’s sound, from the psychedelic instrumentation to their bilingual lyricism.
  • Dos Santos
  • drea the vibe dealer
  • Emily Blue
  • Ester has been incredibly prolific this year having released a full length album Turn Around in March, a four-song EP entitled weak that she recorded in seven days, a new track “Only Mine” out today, and quite a few tracks in between! Go listen to this incredible artist.
  • .ethos
  • ÉSSO
  • Fay Ray
  • Fieldmates
  • The Flat Five are a Chicago supergroup that we absolutely adore. Kelly Hogan, Nora O’Connor, Scott Ligon, Casey McDonough, and Alex Hall make up the band with decades worth of their musical expertise! Their slightly twisted dulcet tones are a sure fire way to make these trying times feel a little better. Check out their debut album It’s a World of Love and Hope (with songs written by fellow Chicago mainstay Chris Ligon) and their recently released Another World!

Fran – photo by Julian Ramirez

  • Fran‘s guitar-driven songs with extraordinary vocals are perfect for these physical distancing times
  • Fauvely makes some incredible dreamy tunes that will certainly hook you the second you give them a listen. Led by Sophie Brochu, the band has a have a new album coming out next Bandcamp Friday, so now’s the perfect time to pre-order it!
  • Gal Gun – I first saw Gal Gun perform at a living room show four years ago and their latest album Critical Hit is fantastic! Pick up their deluxe vinyl of the album which includes ton of fun extras for only $20!
  • Ganser – Need some downright incredible rock music to pulse through your veins? Look no further than Ganser’s exhilarating sound, especially right now since their newest album Just Look at That Sky is out now! Let yourself melt into Alicia Gaines’ range of confident vocals and snarls and the band’s raw post-punk surge. The first pressing of their album is sold out, but the second pressing (on an even cooler color vinyl) is available now! Plus the band is offering up some incredible prints this time around with $1 from each print sale going towards The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
  • Girl K – You can’t get much better than Katherine Patino’s excellent project! Check out our review of their set with Charly Bliss from TNK!
  • Good Fuck is experimental madness from Tim Kinsella and Jenny Pulse. To put it simple, it’s fucking good.
  • The Glow Ups Chicago-based, punk rock trio features Mike Licari (Bass/Vocals), Kevin De Leon (Drums), and Brian Perfect (Guitar/Vocals). After a series of three separately released singles, the band officially released its debut album, Take Your Tapas Off, on April 27, 2020. Accompanied by the band’s “down to earth” nature, their songs take you on a voyage of pop-punk nostalgia. They hold the central theme of “not having to impress anybody” and you witness this in their lyrical storytelling—comprising real-life stories and experiences.
  • Glitter Moneyyy – Catch up on this duo’s sexy sound before their new single “Peggy Sue” drops next week!
  • Half Gringa has a new album out right now! Force to Reckon is exactly that, giving you some much needed new tunes from Isabel Olive!
  • The Hecks – Great local band balancing angular post-punk and catchy synth rock, with an awesome live show to boot.
  • Honey Cellar
  • Hushdrops
  • Impulsive Hearts makes sun-soaked tunes that will make staying at home way better. Her latest album Cry All The Time is a perfect example of her sound and another great record for summer (or whenever!). She also recently released “Dearie” and all proceeds of “Dearie” will be donated to Chicago’s Brave Space Alliance.
  • Jeremy Cunningham’s latest album The Weather Up There is one to behold. Written in response to the loss of his brother, the jazz album is a powerful listen as it ruminates on its heavy themes perfectly. It’s a must-listen-to album. This album was featured on our list of albums we enjoyed in 2020.
  • Jessica Risker – psychedelic folk musician and sound designer making some excellent tunes to chill out to.
  • Joan of Arc is coming to end and recently released their final album Tim Melina Theo Bobby. This genre hopping band has been going two and a half decades with a rotating lineup always lead by the formidable Tim Kinsella. Check out this amazing local act as they call it a legacy.

Jordanna – Photo by Geoff Stellfox

Lala Lala – Photo by Julian Ramirez

Miranda Winters – Photo by Julian Ramirez

  • Melkbelly delivers some noise rock that will surely get you hooked on Miranda Winters (see below) excellent voice! Their most recent album Pith was featured on our list of albums we enjoyed in 2020
  • Mia Joy recently announced her new album Spirit Tamer and is set to release on May 7th (which happens to be the last Bancdcamp Friday currently scheduled)
  • Miranda Winters recently ventured out from Melkbelly (see Above) for a pair of great singles! Check out our thoughts on them here!
  • Monobody has a new album coming out in April! Today’s the perfect day to preorder it!
  • Mooner delivers some straight up rock and roll jams and their latest collection of songs The Alternate Universe of Love is out next week. So head over to their Bandcamp page and support this excellent band!
  • Mother Nature
  • Mukqs creates these experimental collages of sounds and noises that will leave you in awe. His latest release My Most Personal Album to Date came out last Bandcamp Friday, so don’t wait any longer to get this album.

NNAMDÏ – photo by Julian Ramirez

Ovef Ow – Photo By Julian Ramirez

Ratboys – photo by Julian Ramirez

Sen Morimoto – photo by Julian Ramirez

  • Sen Morimoto not only makes incredibly catchy tunes and is about to release what’s sure to be another banger of an album, he is also now a part of the Hideout team!
  • Serengeti is technically on the list twice, but with good reason. The man makes some of the weirdest hip hop and is prolific. A Couple months ago he dropped a new album, the gentle fall, so what better time to pick it up than on a Bandcamp Friday!
  • ShowYouSuck
  • Slow Pulp just released a new album and we’re big fans of it! Check out our thoughts here!
  • Spun Out was birthed from the ashes of NE-HI. Members of that incredible band found renewed interest in other projects (we’ve already mentioned DEHD) but also gave birth to Spun Out’s alluring synths and undeniable grooves. Their debut album is a must listen affair that will help pass the nights away in the best way possible.
  • TALSounds
  • Tara Terra

Tasha – photo by Julian Ramirez

V.V. Lightbody – photo by Julian Ramirez

Also let’s not forget these incredible local labels.

There are plenty of other great bands on Bandcamp, so take a look around and discover something new! If you have any recommendations, comment below and spread the love because everybody needs it right now.

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