Zoe of Elevator Fight
Credit: HippieCouture (Fair Use)

Shame on the suits that're hiding indie gems from you. You will not be dumbed down. You crave artists that incarnated in the 3rd dimension to uplift the masses. How did the same wack tracks get constant radio rotation? Where's the stuff corporations haven't ripped the soul out of?

Relax. They're right here.

And there's more where the top songs of these indie bands come from:


1. His Volatile Nature – Galaxy of Tar

His Volatile Nature is a fierce, jagged-edged kaliedoscopic masterpiece from the pixie hearts of Galaxy Of Tar's Naima Mora and Elias Diaz (another pair of afro punk indie band titans). In reality, this is but a splendored glimpse. You should add the entirety of their EP to your personal soundtrack, if only for a brief moment of off-planetary solace that can only lead to higher frequency brain-waves.


2. Anna Mae - Dragons of Zynth

The muted, pastel meets white-noise elegance of this song is sweet surrender. Play this when you're lazing. Play it when you're tired of this dimension. Don't be surprised if it induces lucid dreaming. The Dragons are sonic masters of the etheric. Every little bit of their energy helps raise planetary consciousness.


3. Anything – No Surrender

Anything is the punk-profound equivalent of a paper heart received by the object of high affection from her perfectly matched admiring genius: preserved and revisited for years with a heartlight-flickering grin. No Surrender is another one of those afro punk indie bands rewriting musical convention.


4. Fall of The Western world – Dwarfstarr

It's dismal-ish, but what isn't in the current era? At least Dwarfstarr is telling it like it is. If you're one of those irritated green-boned do-gooders needing help with your patience as the destructive societal patterns of a consumerist world come grinding to a halt, Dwarfstarr's got your back (if only for a few minutes of a sonically-lensed view of the future-now).


5. Lost In The Yukon – Eagle and Talon

I so admire the oddball wit of these anti-cookie-cutter guitar strummers. Lyrics like: “ you're a devil in a waterbed,” and “your eyeliner is frostbite,” counter the hidden daggers of the player viewable through one's spyglass. Coupled with delightfully strange background vocals, this is a track you'll want to play just because, even if your romantic life is a completely happy one.


6. White Rabbit – Honeychild Coleman

Honeychild Coleman is one of the most interesting creatures Brooklyn has to offer (no understatement- look for her appearance in the afropunk documentary). Delightfully quirky and monotone all in the same turn of a wise and lion-lazy, twinkling of the eye, Honeychild delivers magik with this track. Her wonderland cover of pointed vocals, that're too cute and lull-edged to be cutting, engages in a strange symmetry with White Rabbit's slight island undertones. This is absinthe-toasting music if ever there was.


7. The Hard Way-The Dolldaze

The Dolldaze drops sonic gems regularly, but The Hard Way is an anthem for the unapologetically non-combative rebel whose constant bumping of the head upon closed doors or uncomfortable social moments abounds (definitely one of her top songs).

For the nonconformist being whose unusually content with who they are despite the societal frowns gazing 'pon dem, The Dolldaze raises a strawberry moonshine toast that celebrates who-you-be, mistakes and other identity-carving experiences included.


8. Little Ghost - Elevator Fight

If you're still frowning over the fact that the producers of X-men: First Class (shame on them) reduced our dear Zoe to a role far unbefitting her stature (surely she deserved better), take solace in the exquisite ethereal beauty of music that hasn't been tainted by the racially-biased hands of outdated Hollywood execs we're better off without. Little Ghost is a masterpiece. It's dusky melancholy center dwells the mental roads of bittersweet “what if” lyrics rising to periodic climax with a poignant pejorative or two sung through raspy, sweet vocals. Press play and swing on your porch hammock in mid-summer just before or after a rain with a candle burning for the one who got (or is trying) to get away. Elevator Fight is another of the legendary afro punk bands to grace the annual festival.


9. I Love Your Hair – Imani Coppola

Imani's sometimes prickly, othertimes rainbow-colored aura (she announced she re-hijacked the rainbow for non-specific use back somewhere in '06 or maybe it was '05?) emerges from a quick-wit and disregard for the stuffy uselessness of convention. Love this girl. It is nearly impossible not to if your heart's still got a little warmth. 'I Love Your Hair' is a cute, subtly messaged anthem emerged from a black chick with “mixed” ancestry to a world that won't likely ever understand her for a long list of genius-level reasons. Imani is a quirky, flower-headed gem and another of genius among afropunk alumni.


10. Oil- Hoonose

A green anthem of subtle and razor-edged sarcasm, “Oil” is the quintessential track for the mp3 players of all eyes-wide-open global citizens that remain horrified and pissed at the abysmally slow actions the West is “taking” to “rectify” the environmental and societal problems it's singlehandedly seeded with little help from other parts of the world. Of Hoonose's top songs, this is a classic in indie books.