Peanut’s Playground: What The Hell Is Going On – What’s Up With Dutch Music

Peanut’s Playground is my bi-weekly verbal diarrhea. Every other Wednesday I plan to ramble about stuff I like (in my typically screwed up version of English) and hope you will like too. And in case you don’t… mweh.

The general consensus about Dutch music is that it sucks. Ok maybe not the general consensus, since there are a lot of people who don’t give a crap about Dutch music in general!

Whatever the public might thin,k my own opinion on Dutch music is well known. With the exception of a few great artists (most of which don’t record anymore) the majority of the tunes from the Nether regions sucks balls. I’ve always looked somewhat envious to our Belgian neighbors. The complete opposite of what is going in Holland is what’s normal over there. They have more great artists than sucky ones. At least it certainly seems that way.

Even though I think Dutch music sucks I’m still going to yabber a bit about it in this article. The reason for this is that somehow a bunch of very good artists have surfaced these past months, four of which I would like to introduce to you. All of them have ‘break-out’ potential and are definitely worthy of your attention.

First up are Amsterdam-based alternative rock band Alamo Race Track

I’ve written about them before, when they made my year-end list (top 5) with their second album Black Cat John Brown. They’ve just released their third long player called Unicorn Loves Deer on Excelsior Recordings, and although it’s completely different from their previous work, it’s an absolute winner! The melodies and instrumentation are both original and haunting. They might take some time to sink in, but when they do, they’re hard to get out of your head.

Alamo Race Track – Shake The Leaves

You can download their album here

Next up: Dazzled Kid

Dazzled Kid is the solo project of Voicst (alumnus of my 2009′ year-end list) singer Tjeerd Bomhof. Where his main band Voicst make fast paced rocking guitar pop, Tjeerd choose to tone it down a bit for this project, giving it a relaxed but still poppy singer-songwriter feel. Yes No Maybe is the lead-off single of his 2011′ debut album Fire Needs Air.

Dazzled Kid – Yes No Maybe

You can download the album here

Number three: De Staat

How does one describe a band that is totally indescribable? Because that’s exactly what the Nijmegen outfit De Staat are, utterly and completely unique and thus indescribable (to me at least). They call themselves ‘Musical Chameleons’ which sounds about right to me. You can stick any of a hundred genre labels on them and be right. There’s really only option left, and that’s to check out their second album Machinery asap.

De Staat – I’ll Never Marry You

You can download their album here

Last, but certainly not least. Dutch beauty Marike Jager

I’ve been in love with Marike Jager’s music ever since first seeing her play live back in 2007 (which feels like ages ago). Her somewhat quirky stage presence combined with a great voice and fine songwriting captured my interest from the start. Since then I’ve seen Marike progress into an artist Holland has not seen many of over the years. With each album and each performance she fine tuned here craft, resulting in her finest effort yet, this year’s Here Comes The Night. You really really should give that album some well deserved attention!

Marike Jager – Break The Law

You can download her album here

See you in two weeks!

– Martin

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