10 indie jams for your summer playlist

crowd holds up drummer of twenty one pilots on a platform

Did you catch twenty one pilots at UIC’s Spark in the Park music festival in September? They were great and their new song is on my summer playlist.


I love making playlists. Just check my Spotify account and you’ll see that it’s overflowing with them. The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of summer is driving down Lake Shore Drive with my windows down and my music on full blast.

Here are 10 songs that must make their way on your summer playlist if you are a fan of indie/alternative music. You’d better believe they’re already on mine!

  1. Young the Giant — “Amerika”
    Ok, so this is the song that inspired me to write this blog post. After two years of silence from the band, they finally released a new single and announced an album. What a perfect kickoff to summer.
  2. M83 — “Midnight City”
    A summer classic. As simple as that. Just imagine how powerful this song will sound performed in front of thousands of fans at Lollapalooza.

  3. Broods — “Free”
    With a beat that you simply cannot ignore, “Free” is a must on my list. Catch them perform June 18 at 101WKQX’s annual music festival PIQNIQ.

  4. Foals — “Mountain at My Gates”
    You’ve probably heard this one playing lately on the radio — I just can’t seem to get enough of it! Don’t miss Foals perform this terrific song at Lollapalooza in July. Hopefully you were one of the lucky ones who snagged a ticket in the few minutes before they sold out.

  5. Two Door Cinema Club — “Next Year” 
    This is another one I couldn’t ignore. Two Door Cinema Club, also performing at Lollapalooza, is coming off a three-year hiatus and will be releasing new music soon. This Irish indie rock band has music that makes you want to do nothing but dance your worries away.

  6. Kavinsky — “Nightcall”
    Has anyone seen the 2011 movie “Drive” starring Ryan Gosling? If you haven’t, you should. I’m a big fan of film and I’m always seeking out movies with terrific soundtracks. This song is pure bliss. If you don’t feel completely invincible while driving down the road with this blasting in your car, I don’t know what to tell you.

  7. Chvrches — “High Enough to Carry You Over”
    The group is back and even better than before. I couldn’t get enough of this track when I first heard it, and I’m still obsessing over it months later. Learn the lyrics and sing your heart out.

  8. The Strokes — “Someday” 
    Another oldie, but a classic. This song is the epitome of feel-good.

  9. twenty one pilots — “Ride”
    Hopefully you had the chance to catch twenty one pilots at UIC’s annual Spark in the Park music festival last September. I still can’t believe how terrific they were live! I also can’t help but think that their follow-up single to “Stressed Out” is about 100 times better. This song just makes me want to lay outside in the sun and relax for hours.

  10. Lucius — “Turn it Around” 
    You’ve probably heard this one while watching TV — it’s featured on a commercial for the Samsung Galaxy. Lucius is another band playing at 101WKQX’s summer music festival. Don’t miss it. I’m sure this song will sound great live.

Honorable mentions:

  • Bombay Bicycle Club — “Feel”
  • Meg Myers — “Lemon Eyes” 
  • Bad Suns — “Transpose”
  • Metric — “Clone”
  • Catfish and the Bottlemen — “Homesick”


Almasa PecaninAlmasa Pecanin is a senior majoring in the teaching of mathematics with a minor in moving image arts. She is working on making her lifelong hope to become a high school teacher a reality. Almasa is a lover of many things, including but not limited to coffee, “The Office,” indie music, the Chicago Blackhawks, red lipstick and anything lavender scented. She is also an avid film watcher — if you can’t find her at any given moment, she’s probably at the movies, off trying to find movies to add to her Blu-Ray collection, or listening to her 80+ hour playlist of film scores.​




, , ,