Terror/Cactus, “Despierta La Selva”
The masked solo artist known as Terror/Cactus traces his Argentina > Miami > Seattle trajectory on his album Cerro Invisible, a spliffed-out swirl of traditional Latin cumbia, slinky digital beats and Jamaican-style studio magic. So far all we know is the music—and it’s rad. Viva la mystery!
The Sons of Rainier, “Big Clouds”
RIP old-timey music made by trend-humping hipsters (2008–2014), hello timeless roots music made by dedicated craftspeople. This new band of Seattle-music veterans is all easy melodies, impeccable harmonies and wry, evocative lyrics. Their album Down In Pancake Valley is a master class in how to rightly render open-sky cowboy folk.
La Luz, “Cicada”
They still rep their hometown in their BandCamp bio, but these days the women of La Luz wear Los Angeles well. The lead single from their upcoming Floating Features LP explores bigger, broader production than the surfy noir-pop we’re used to—not surprising given the ambition that drove the band south.
Chong the Nomad, “in conclusion”
Built around a vulnerable, sweetly cooed mantra—”I fucked up/I’m in love”—this unconventional banger by the singer/producer born Alda Agustiano gains loping momentum via chugging guitar, chain-rattle percussion and a toy box-worth of inscrutable sounds. Agustiano’s recently dropped debut EP, Love Memo, is full of similarly compelling cloud-funk oddities.
CUFF LYNX, “Believing in the Fantasy (ft. VAENS)”
CUFF LYNX might be the heirs apparent to Odesza. Here the Bellingham-born live-electronica duo enlists vocalist/family member VAENS, who makes groovy throwback R&B jams on his own, for a laser-polished anachronism that tethers ’80s electro boogie to melodramatic contemporary EDM. In a perfect world, this song’s a hit.