The 1975’s ‘People’ is a snarling, rallying cry for change. Sure, rock bands have always encouraged people to “fight the power” and “know your enemy” but right now, we know we should be angry. We’ve seen the news, we’ve been online, we live in a world where outrage is everywhere and it’s exhausting.
‘People’ is the sort of political anthem for a generation of kids who are so informed, it’s crippling. It’s a much-needed shock to the system, designed to wake people up from feeling helpless. The 1975 aren’t the only band who have found their voice though. There’s a whole wave of young, fearless, energetic bands who want to soundtrack the fight back. Stop fucking with the kids and start listening to them instead.
Who are they? SWMRS are a four-piece, Californian punk band who used to be cutesy pop-punkers Emily’s Army until they ditched the sugar and safety of the major label and started following movement. Two albums in, Main Stage sets at Reading & Leeds and support slots alongside The 1975 and Muse, the band just keep getting louder, prouder and more dangerously brilliant.
What are they angry about? Loads of stuff, from sexual assault at gigs to the state of American politics but it all comes under the umbrella of people not questioning the lies that are being masqueraded as news.
Listen to: The title track to second album ‘Berkley’s On Fire’
What can I do about it? Find voices to trust, question everything and get involved with The SWMRS Fund. (https://www.swmrs.com/swmrsfund/)
Who are they? Yungblud, AKA Dominic Harrison, is living venn diagram of 70’s punk, 00’s emo and millennial rage. Working with everyone from Travis Barker and Halsey to Machine Gun Kelly, he’s a loud and brash burst of truth from Northern England
What are they angry about? That people still don’t take his generation seriously.
Listen to: ‘Hope For The Underrated Youth’
What can I do about it? Don’t be afraid of your own voice and listen to the kids, man.
Who are they? Nervus are a Watford indie-punk band who, alongside the likes of Milk Teeth, Cultdreams and Koji, are building a community of likeminded individuals who are frustrated at the state of the government and the society they inspire.
What are they angry about? After tackling Gender Dysphoria and identity on their debut album ‘Permanent Rainbow’, the band started looking at the human impact on their environment for its follow-up ‘Everything Dies’ while third album ‘Tough Crowd’ tackles fascism, austerity and The Tories’ love of putting profit over people.
Listen to: ‘They Don’t’, a track designed “to highlight injustice and directly rebuke the claims of Boris Johnson that increasing numbers of police keeps society safer.”
What can I do about it? Read their ‘They Don’t Keep Us Safe’ zine: https://www.nogodsnobinaries.com/product/they-don-t-keep-you-safe
What are they angry about? Mass shootings, gun control, corporate greed, political corruption, poverty, the opioid crisis… the list goes on.
Listen to: ‘A Modern Tragedy Vol. 1’ EP which features the viral sensation of ‘Blood//Water’
What can I do about it? Get involved with his XX Resistance, “a movement that serves to empower youth and connect passionate people with ways to get involved in the progressive causes they care about.”
Who are they? Exeter based Muncie Girls are smart, savage and surprisingly optimistic. Full of heart, their indie-punk songs sound like a birthday party but deal with the dark corners of British society.
What are they angry about? Latest album ‘Fixed Ideals’ starts with a song about toxic masculinity and covers everything from the failings of the welfare state to mental health and the complete lack of government support in that area.
Listen to: ‘Clinic’
What can I do about it? Support Mind.
Who are they? Punk pop superstars Dream Wife charge headfirst into everything they do. Their song ‘Somebody’ became an anthem of the #MeToo Movement, with the line “I am not my body, I am somebody” scrawled across placards and notebooks. When they wanted a more inclusive tour lineup they teamed up with Girls Rock London and Girls Rock Camp Alliance and put a call out for more women and non-binary artists, which resulted in 433 submissions in a week.
What are they angry about? Society’s objectification of women and non-binary people.
Listen to: ‘Somebody’ from their self-titled debut
Who are they? Emo collective IToldYouIWouldEatYou talk identity, anxiety and uncertainty amidst a blitz of post-hardcore, math rock and pop-punk. Always shifting, always searching, it’s a ramshackle gang that feels like it’s held together with duct tape but there’s resilience in everything they do.
What are they angry about? The state’s vested interest in the anxiety of the young and the everyday struggles that members of the LGBTQ+ community still face
Listen to: ‘Almost Zero’ from debut album ‘Oh Dearism’
What can I do about it? Support Mermaids.