New Hampshire Bands to Watch in 2021
New Hampshire isn’t certainly the largest or most prolific state. In fact, it’s apparently not notable enough to even have a Spotify “Sounds Of” playlist for it. This leaves the impression that it’s nothing more than a musical flyover state; even its neighbors have a bit more syndication going on. With that said, we’ve done a bit of research into finding bands from New Hampshire you should keep an eye on.
This self-described “rapabilly” project is one of the few hip-hop acts that still uses a full backing band. This level of energy is welcome, and it allows for a refreshing break from the trope of programmed trap beats. The crew crafts sentimental, smooth songs about life and love. The production is tight, the drums and bass are punchy, but the mix keeps everything balanced fairly well.
Broadwing comfortably straddle the line between the angst of folk-punk and the more commercial side of indie pop. Their most recent release is largely acoustic, but their earlier work is gritty, reminiscent of mid-00s alternative. Imagine a slightly more disillusioned version of Weezer, and you’ll be on the right track of what to expect here.
Any album that opens with a nine-minute track has something to say. Such is the case for Dan Bauer’s 2020 LP, The After Life. The album toys with Chuck Ragan-flavored punk, Bleachers-esque vocals, and the moxie of a rock opera. Indeed, the whole album is in the same key, and flows like one long song. Go give Dan some love.
Perspective… is easily the biggest band on this list, and they’ve been making waves in the indie, punk, and emo communities for years with the new resurgence of melodic punk. Their discography is always growing, so it’s fair to expect more shortly.
Released days before Christmas, Tiny Wine’s first offering is a sort of lofi/DIY folk rock project. And by DIY, I mean you can buy it on cassette. It’s grainy in an endearing way and nostalgic in a playful one. There’s a bit of dream pop mixed in, so it’ll be interesting to see where this new project goes next.
Dungeon Dogs is a dark wave / goth electronic project, and it’s got about everything you’d expect from the genre. I can’t help but immediately draw comparisons to the likes of TR/ST, but that’s a good thing. If you’re a fan of moody electronic songs that the dead might dance to on a full moon, you’re in luck.
Post-metal seems to have had its hay day with bands like Rinoa and Devil Sold His Soul, but it definitely lives on in the shadows. Girih mixes elements of prog rock, black metal, and post-rock ambience for a sound that is frenetic and hard to pin down. Their last project is over two years old now, so it’ll be interesting to see what’s next.
Ezra Cohen pens refreshing alt-country songs, complete with Rhodes and slide guitar. These are upbeat songs that mix the subtly of country life with a fair bit of suburban poetry. Add in a bit of 90s alt rock influence in the mix and you can help but feel a bit nostalgic listening to these songs. Here’s to hoping more is on the way soon.
Footings crafts impressive chamber folk arrangements: dual vocals, harmonic, violin, and more. It’s definitely gritty and honest at times, which is welcome in a world of plastic-perfect presentation. Each emotional nuance is in full display—each voice crack, each buzzing string, each bit of bass feedback. It simply feels immersive and real. Given the band’s latest single, we can expect them to follow things up in 2021.
Check out a playlist of selections from these artists here: