Crobot “Low Life”
Self-described as “dirty groove rock,” Crobot is that and much more. The band’s sound is an amalgam of their influences, everything from classic rock to funk to Motown, with some stoner rock thrown in for good measure. Their latest track, “Low Life,” has earned the Pennsylvania-based rockers well over two million streams on Spotify alone, while the song’s hilarious video has over 500,000 views on YouTube. This just might be the track that brings them into the collective consciousness of the rock community, and for good reason. It’s catchy, it has a thick, head-bobbing groove and a memorable chorus. Rock. Is. Not. Dead.
DeWolff “Nothing’s Changing”
There is something pure and nostalgic about DeWolff’s “Nothing’s Changing.” From the caught-off-guard synth to open the track to the vocals, which are more soulful than what I was expecting from a psychedelic Southern rock band. At this point, it bears mentioning that this song doesn’t necessarily mesh with the view of Southern rock, but that’s assuming that South is the Southern US, versus the south of Norway, which is where the band hails from. Featuring brothers Pablo van de Poel and Luka van de Poel, and Robin Piso, DeWolff has been around for more than a decade, racking up considerable acclaim in Europe. Although, in 2014, they traveled to Valdosta, Georgia to record an album with Grammy award-winning producer Mark Neill. Whether you’re in Valdosta, Oslo or somewhere in between—DeWolff is a worthwhile listen—think Portugal. The. Man. meets Led Zeppelin with a touch of Neil Young.

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Otherwise “Lifted”
Few acts manage to blend rock and rap—akin to oil and water—as seamlessly as Otherwise manages it in its first 30 seconds. Otherwise, which has been around since 2003 and has witnessed a revolving door of members, is now headed by Adrian and Ryan Patrick and Brian Medeiros. While the band is described as hard rock, the opening to “Lifted” suggests, ahem, otherwise, although the track quickly crescendos to the band’s signature hard rock roots. While some rock songs channel anger into a symphonic masterpiece, don’t mix Otherwise’s amplitude for aggression. What you have with “Lifted” is the product of a band having fun with a keen sense of self-awareness.
BRKN LOVE “Flies in the Honey”
A four-piece band hailing from Toronto, BRNK Love is out with “Flies in the Honey” off their eponymous debut album, which has an early 2000s punk rock sound to it. The song title is an allusion to the Aesop fable, “The Flies & the Honey.” With comparisons to Soundgarden, among others, BRKN LOVE truly is establishing itself as a band for the punks, as he states on the band’s website. Sounds pretty sweet.

Ashnikko “Working Bitch”
Ashnikko is an example that talent—like life—finds a way. A shining example of the powers of social media and content-sharing platforms (YouTube and Tik Tok), Ashnikko has scored tens of millions of views with her music and “Working Bitch” is no exception. With lines like ‘I’m working, bitch/Ain’t got no time for dick” and “Now he look stressed, now he know I don’t need him”, this song serves as a head-bopping 2020 female anthem.

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