For the last few years, the genre/format known as “Alternative” or “Alternative Rock” has been going through major changes, the biggest is disappearance of traditional “rock” elements from it. As someone who grew up listening to Los Angeles’ KROQ, the sound of alternative music was always a mix of guitars and melody. Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sublime, Nirvana and blink-182 dominated the airwaves of Southern California. There was some diversity, with the occasional rap (Eminem, Outkast), Reggae (Damian Marley) or pop (Katy Perry, Tov Lo) track making an appearance, but nothing like how it is today.
All things change, and fans of the genre in the 90’s and early 00’s may not recognize it today, but that doesn’t mean it’s going away. In fact, it’s thriving more than ever, with a slew of new and rising stars, who feel both familiar and strange for genre, but all somehow fit.
Our Next Wave Alternative Playlist is here to launch the new face of alternative music, and the artists that will take the format into the new decade. Some are already established mega-stars (Billie Eilish, Twenty One Pilots), some are critically-acclaimed rising acts (Koffee, Sam Fender, Hobo Johnson), and others are ones we feel could be the next big things.
All you got to do is follow and listen to the playlist below, and prepare for what’s to come.