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NT Artist Series: 7 Bands To Follow This Fall

Maya Richard-Craven |
October 9, 2014 | 6:14 p.m. PDT

Staff Reporter

Members of Pentatonix pose as dolls in "Papaoutai" music video (Facebook/Pentatonix).
Members of Pentatonix pose as dolls in "Papaoutai" music video (Facebook/Pentatonix).

It was about a movement, not about making money. I think we’re moving back into that again. There’s still an importance in actually writing songs again. People are interested in hearing things that make sense.” 

-Nathaniel Rateliff 

It's that time of the year. The time when summer tracks of June and July (that were once so catchy) kind of make you want to light your car radio on fire. The tunes about missing lovers and partying all night long just aren't good anymore.

Maybe it's that you are single, or maybe it's the fact that the same five love songs were played on repeat on every local station. If you are in desperate need of a new obsession, take a look at these musicians who are on the rise. 


Pentatonix is an acapella group that has recently become popular for singing renditions of other artists songs - and actually making them sound better. Their Holiday Album was released on October 21, including heartwarming tunes like Fleet Foxes' "White Winter Hymnal" and "Let It Go" from Disney's "Frozen."  

Members: Mitch Grassi, Scott Hoying, Avi Kaplan, Kirstin Maldonado, Kevin Olusola.

Social Media: Check them out on Facebook and Twitter

General Manager: Jonathan Kalter.

Press Contact: Ken Phillips.

READ MORE: Pentatonix Humbly Harmonize At The Fonda Theatre


These three college students make their music independently (for now). The harmony in MUNA's vocals makes audiences close their eyes, because you can't help but get lost in it. When speaking with MUNA's leader singer, Katie Gavin, she expressed that she wants the audience to feel as good as she does when she creates music. And while listening to MUNA it is clear these ladies want to connect with the audience. So much of live performance is lost in pleasing viewers for superficial reasons, but MUNA brings raw emotion and passion to the table for a (real) engaging experience. 

Members: Katie Gavin, Naomi McPherson, Josette Maskni. 

Social Media: Check them out on Facebook.

Contact: MUNA.


This Danish indie rock duo quickly gained popularity when their songs "Young and Cold" and "Suicide" were featured on the popular CW series "Gossip Girl." The Raveonettes' latest album, PE'AHI, was released on July 22. Pitchfork's Jamieson Cox noted: "the greater range of tones and textures is coupled with lyrical material that skews uncomfortably personal. The large evolutionary leap the Raveonettes have made on Pe’ahi raises an important question: Does stepping away from sonic simplicity compromise the core of the band’s appeal?" Find out for yourself here

Members: Sune Rose Wagner & Sharin Foo.

Social Media: Check them out on Facebook and Twitter

General Manager: Scott Cohen.


Rolling Stone's Chuck Eddy wrote: "This New York band's brash second album rages with the upbeat, beat-wise humor that hard rock has suppressed ever since grunge." If you're looking to experience confessional (without walking into a church), you might want to download The Pretty Reckless' album "Going To Hell."

The lyrics in the track "Heaven Knows" express the complexity of grappling with one's own coming to consciousness. And for listeners who were raised in a specific sect of Christianity but chose to "leave the Church," Momsen's references to "belonging down below" might sound all too familiar. This singer songwriter has definitely broken out of her gossip girl "pretty-a-poor jay" fascade by writing music that seeks to ask the following questions: Who are you and where are you going? 

Members: Taylor Momsen, Ben Phillips, Mark Damon, Jamie Perkins. 

Social Media: Check them out on Facebook and Twitter

General Manager: Erica Ramon.

READ MORE: The Pretty Reckless At The Wiltern: Review


Alec Benjamin may have just started his third year in college, but that hasn't stopped him from getting signed by Columbia Records. At a first glance Alec looks like your typical college student, but then he opens his mouth to sing. "He must be signed" is probably something that will pop into your head after hearing this kid play. His songwriting, vocals and guitar are all just that good. His summer hit "Paper Crown" is one of those songs you just have to play on repeat. So it might be a little lovey dovey and mainstream, but there is nothing like singing along to a song that addresses universal truths (and helps to mend a broken heart). 

Members: Alec Benjamin. 

Social Media: Check him out on Facebook and Twitter

Press Contact: Alec Benjamin


Nathaniel Rateliff's sound has been described as both Folk and Indie, and is heavily influenced by Bon Iver, Delta Spirit, Leonard Cohen, etc. Rateliff, the lead singer of the group, has admitted that he originally began writing and playing music  "to get the same feeling" that it gave him when he listened to it. "Like having an anxiety attack—where you almost start to weep, at the same time feel a strange pressure in your chest." And clearly they've done something right - The New York Times even referred to Nathaniel Rateliff's sound as "stark, eloquent Johnny Cash echoes." Listen to "Still Trying" by Nathaniel Rateliff below. 

Members: Nathaniel Rateliff, Julie Davis, Joseph Pope III, James Han, Patrick Meese.

Social Media: Check him out on Facebook and Twitter.

General Manager: Chris Tetzeli.

Press Contact: Jennifer Sacca.


You might remember Dana Wiliams from her breakout guitar performance with actress Leighton Meester. The duo covered Fleetwood Mac's "Dreams" and the video went viral in a matter of hours. But Ms. Williams does not need to rely on Meester to help continue her career, and has managed to gain quite the following. Her raspy, soulful voice, along with her natural grace on the acoustic guitar make for a great solo performer. Make sure to check out Williams' YouTube channel, along with her other social media. 

Members: Dana Williams. 

Social Media: Check her out on Facebook and Twitter.

Contact Staff Reporter Maya Richard-Craven here



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