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The eight best indie songs of June 2023

My favourite tracks from the month of June 2023, featuring: STONE, Foo Fighters, Slowdive and more.

Welcome to the second edition of a blog which counts down the best new songs from the month that's just been.

In this article, we count down eight indie tracks worthy of attention from June 2023...

9. Zivi - 'Move Along'

(While this article is supposed to be eight songs, here's a last-minute entry we couldn't ignore!).

First up is the latest release from singer-songwriter Zivi, a man who splits his time between Los Angeles and Sante Fe. On Tuesday (27 June), Zivi shared ‘Move Along’, the third preview single from new album Lost In Love which is set to be released on 15 September on Numbered Recordings/Mama Mañana Records. The track itself is wonderfully dreamy and 70s soft rock inspired – you can just imagine it soundtracking a late-night drive through Los Angeles. Described by the singer as containing “lethargy while still being upbeat”, it was a track I kept hitting repeat on after my first listen!


8. Christine and the Queens - 'Big Eye'

French indie singer Christine and the Queens did something very brave in 2023: release a triple album. Despite the 96-minute run time and need for serious investment from the listen, Paranoia, Angels, True Love has been universally well-received across the board. Her fourth record finishes on the epic 7-minute closer 'Big eye' which would later close her Saturday night Glastonbury Woodies Stage headline set to spine-tingling effect.


7. Grian Chatten – 'Last Time Every Time Forever'

I write this just as the Fontaines D.C frontman is about to release his debut solo album Chaos For The Fly and its one which appears to be receiving a lot of high praise from the critics. Third preview single ‘Last Time Every Time Forever’, which features backing vocals from his fiancé Georgie Jesson, opens with an ominous bassline before moving into something altogether brighter and luscious. Chatten describes the track as “a weak knee’d 99th lap around a hellscape town of your own making…haunted by seagulls and hoarse-throated slot machines from the 1980s and it breaks its own promise on every listen.”


6. Squid – 'Swing (In A Dream)'

Brighton-based Squid released their sophomore album O Monolith this month and it's quite the listening experience. Occasionally haunting and always unpredictable, Squid’s second album isn’t for the faint-hearted. A challenging and rewarding listen for those brave enough to handle it. Opening track ‘Swing (In A Dream)’ came from an anxious dream of frontman Ollie Judge about being stuck in Jean-Honoré Fragonard’s painting The Swing. There’s so much going on here the listener is never able to get too comfortable. And this sets us up nicely for what is to come later on this excellent record.


5. Foo Fighters – 'Teacher'

Can we call this band "indie"? Definitely not. But Foo Fighters gifted us with their latest album in June, one many of us were intrigued to hear following the death of drummer Taylor Hawkins and Dave Grohl’s mum, Virginia (who was a teacher). But Here We Are’s penultimate track has Dave Grohl and co in adventurous terrain. This is quite the feat considering they’ve long been written off as rock’s most formulaic band. ‘Teacher’ is a rollercoaster of emotion, swirling through heavy guitars to tenderness as Grohl deals with the loss of two important figures to him. “You showed me how to breath, never showed me how to say goodbye” poignantly sings Grohl, inspiring us to cherish every last breath.


4. Ben Howard – 'Walking Backwards'

When many music fans hear the name Ben Howard they think of his successful indie folk debut Every Kingdom (2011) which spawned big singles ‘Only Love’ and ‘The Fear’. It wasn’t exactly an album I rated or enjoyed, but over the years he’s an artist I’ve come to appreciate. His new album Is It? will surprise those who wrote him off all those years ago, winning us over with its delicacy, electronic experimentalism and depth. Second single ‘Walking Backwards’ is positivity personified, described by Howard as “a song to remind ourselves you are doing just fine… small, personal resistance to the growing pressure to conform".


3. Slowdive – 'kisses'

Shoegaze legends Slowdive dropped ‘kisses’ this month as the lead single to their upcoming new album Everything Is Alive. The Reading band’s new track is their first new music since their highly acclaimed 2017 self-titled fourth studio album, which, at the time, marked an excellent return to form following a 22-year absence. ‘Kisses’ is far more delicate and intricate than anything else off their last record. A hazy and dreamy comeback track which just gets better with every listen.


2. Sigur Ros – 'Klettur'

Who doesn’t love a sudden album release? Even better when it’s a band as celebrated and unique as post-rock icons Sigur Ros. On Friday 16 June, the Icelandic band dropped ATTA with less than 24-hour notice – their first record in a decade. Multi-instrumentalist Kjartan Sveinsson was back in the fold joining singer Jónsi and bassist Georg Holm for a truly stunning collection of songs. It gave us this overwhelming feeling which is hard to place, sitting somewhere between sadness and hope. Any number of tracks could be picked here, but lets go for ‘Klettur’ – the thumping drums, strings and Jónsi's airy vocals combining for something quite beautiful.


1. STONE – 'I Gotta Feeling'

Liverpool four-piece STONE delivered an absolute belter of a track earlier in June with ‘I Gotta Feeling’. Written about a night out on the evening of the Grand National, the punchy song takes aim at “wannabe gangsters” and berates the TV show Peaky Blinders for inspiring “a new age of w***ers”. Vocalist Fin Power even reflects on how he escaped a culture of toxic masculinity in his youth. I heard this one on Radio 1 a couple of weeks back and it’s been on a constant loop since!


You can hear the above songs and more on our regularly updated Blinded By The Floodlights 2023 indie recommends playlist.


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