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Highlighting Black Alternative Artists and Bands

With everything going on in the world, I felt it best to point out some amazing Black Alternative and Indie artists. There were a few names that I knew like Kevin Abstract and Santigold, but I decided to hop deeper into discovering new artists that I had not heard before. If you feel inclined to support black artists, but you would still like to listen to your favorite kind of Alternative and Indie that you hear on 95.7 The Spin, then this list is for you.


Our local music director, Kasey, introduced me to his song “Heybb!” which sent me into a deep spiral into his discography. His music sounds a lot like boy pablo and dayglow, so the genre is like Indie Rock. I would spice it up enough to say it is party, Indie Rock. There is just enough fast pace and upbeat sound to take it out of just your basic Indie Rock. His music even has some funk influence which according to his lyrics in “Wiggle,” funks me up! If you aren’t already vibing out to his unique music, add “Marco” to your playlists, and I promise you will not regret it!

Blood Orange

Dev Hynes, also known as Blood Orange, is a multi-instrumentalist record producer who makes some of the most relaxing lo-fi indie music I have heard. The English singer has worked with popular bands like Haim, A$AP Rocky, Mac Miller, and Blondie. His music displays as much diversity as the different bands he has worked with. Most of it would fit under Indie Rock and Funk, but there’s a variety to his music. I recommend listening to “Dark & Handsome” and “Charcoal Baby.”

Arlo Parks

The beautiful voice of Arlo Parks had been putting me to sleep with her relaxing song “Black Dog” since it hit my ears. It wasn’t until recently when I looked into more of her music and discovered she is from London. The BBC predicted she would be a breakthrough artist in 2020 with her song “Cola.” Her genre is definitely Indie and her soft voice fits her genre PERFECTLY. At only 19 years old, she is new to the music scene and on the rise, so look out for more incredible music by her. 


If you are more of an Alternative Rock fan, M.A.G.S. is the closest band on this list to your favorite 2000s Alternative. He even has a song with light screamo. That is not typically my kind of music, but the way he flushes the rest of the song with an excess of alternative rock makes it worth it! The band is made up of multi-instrumentalist Elliott Douglas. While typing this out I listened to the entirety of his self-titled album, the garage rock influences make this album such a fun experience and hard to pick one song as a recommendation. I will, however, say the song that introduced me was “Mvp.”

Sudan Archives

The song that brought me to the creative beauty of Sudan Archives was the orchestral influenced “Confessions.” I loved the incorporation of a violin into alternative music and that is basically all of her discographies. Drawing inspiration from Sundanese Fiddlers, She just says how can I add my violin into all of my music. Like Blood Orange, she is also a record producer. I would say her genre is all over the place, but mostly qualifies under Indie. Along with “Confessions,” I recommend giving “Limitless” and “Did You Know” a listen. 

Written by Haley Isom

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