Rock is not fashionable, it’s a fact. Of course, in recent years the prominence of trap, R&B, rap, and especially reggaetón have dominated the market. And among them, Rosalía’s very personal neo-Flemish proposal, which brings everything together. There is no shortage of pessimists who claim that rock is dead. There are those who call it indie, those who reject the new proposals and those who do not know very well what they are facing given the tendency towards a mix of genres.
There are proposals that always work because they have a loyal audience that support them regardless of the media interest they attract. We are talking about Extremoduro, Fito & Fitipaldis, Leiva, Vetusta Morla or Izal among others, artists and groups with a very strong fan base. Here the hype is irrelevant and the engagement is everything. For this reason, your events are completely without risk. A safe bet.
But what about the new energy? The multitude of new proposals and the forms of consumption have greatly diversified the market. It is very difficult, if not impossible, to find best sellers in this regard. There are no longer figures that move masses like in the past, but the genre continues constantly renewing. Knowing that this is still an important market, we ask ourselves: What are the most relevant rock proposals of the last decade? With this question in mind we dive into the ocean of Big Data to locate the 5 most relevant young rock groups on the current Spanish music scene. We talk about rock in its broadest sense. We are not looking for proposals with strong punctual growth or audience peaks, but rather artists with the largest number of stable listeners and followers whose first work is not before 2015.
They debuted in 2015 in the midst of a great media commotion. The band of Willy Bárcenas and Antón Carreño, yes, the son and grandson of the ex-treasurer of the Popular Party (in Spain) and former president of the CEOE, Gerardo Díaz Ferrán, respectively, garnered followers and detractors at an unusually fast pace. On the one hand, the young public enjoyed their music without prejudice; on the other, those who saw in the proposal the whim of an affluent elite preceded by their last name without problems to pay for a recording studio and timely publicity.
“Posh Pop”, many labeled it and there was no shortage of comparisons with Hombres G. In fact, both groups ended up embarking on a joint mini-tour at the end of 2017. Regardless of these positions, the truth is that with a five-year career and three Studio albums behind them, the band has the backing of more than 1,700,000 monthly listeners, enjoying great stability in this regard since they released Madame Ayahuasca, their last LP to date, in September 2018.
The Madrid Hinds are another of the groups that raise sympathy and roughness in equal parts. From the first moment they had the support of the English-speaking public and press, which is why expectations soared for Leave Me Alone (2016), which was their debut album. They did not have the same luck in Spain, where they received quite a lot of criticism alluding to a scarce instrumental domain and to their overvalued proposal by the international media. The truth is that they have a great pull in many cities in the United States, London and Mexico, but in the city where they are most listened to is, paradoxically, in Madrid, where they have 13,000 monthly followers. Since the beginning of the year they have maintained a good average of listeners, around 220,000 in the global count. However, the recent release of The Prettiest Curse, their third studio album, has increased their listener numbers to over 320,000.
With two studio albums they are one of the most solid bands on the national scene. They released their first work in 2016, North, which took them on a successful tour of nearly fifty days. Given the good reception of the proposal they chose to reissue the album, opening a gap among the best sellers of 2017 and pushing them to start a new tour reaching almost one hundred live performances. They did not take long to enter to record a second album, and in 2018 they already had on Air Street, awarded as the best rock album in the 2019 edition of the Independent Music Awards (MIN). It was not the only award, that night they received four other recognitions: Eventbrite award for best live performance, Sae Institute award for best production, AIE award for best artist and The Orchard award for album of the year. They haven’t released a song for 2 years, and yet their popularity has not stopped growing throughout 2019 and, particularly, in 2020. Especially since last May 18.
The last big hype to date. Children spoiled by music critics. In March 2018 they released their hit “Cayetano” and caused an earthquake on the underground scene. That mocking anthem against the posh Spaniard, followed by the opportunistic “El himno titular” (“The Titular Hymn”), released as the World Cup in Russia unfolded, made them worthy heirs to the Nikis. Simplicity, sarcasm and self-confidence that they captured in their first studio album, released in April 2019. Interest in them has not waned in the least. His fans maintain an admirably stable trend of around 300,000 listeners per month and there are no signs of exhaustion. On the contrary, just a month ago they released “El parque de las balas” (“bullet park”), a second outpost of an EP that is yet to come and that will surely help strengthen their presence on the scene.
They arrived overnight, without warning, in February 2016 with Force Majeure, and since then their popularity has been constantly rising. Tireless workers, in the middle of the presentation tour of their first album, took time to compose and record Other fundamental principles. A second LP with which they revalidated success and took them to Mexico. With El milagro (“the miracle”), their third record reference, they have reached a new peak, maintaining since then a base of 200,000 monthly listeners that remains unchanged. Before declaring the state of alarm as a result of the health crisis caused by the coronavirus, the Murcian band had already hung the “sold out” poster for the two days they had planned in the mythical Madrid Riviera. A frustrated tour of presentation that presupposes great desire among his followers to see the band back on stage.