More than just the background soundtrack at a great party or additions to your workout mixtape, great music can transport you to new realms of the imagination.

You may not be able to visit our sunny island right now, but having a dedicated playlist of Singaporean musicians to listen to is the next best thing.

Whether you’re in the mood for chill beats or dynamic rock music, these local bands are bound to deliver.

Of course, nothing beats listening to these performers live, so don’t forget to check them out at our world-class performance venues—like Esplanade -Theatres on the Bay and the Star Theatre—the next time you’re in town.

Marc Gabriel Loh / .gif Photo by Marc Gabriel Loh / .gif

Genre: Indie-electro

Pairing yearning vocals with mesmerising beats and surreal electronic instrumentation, [.GIF]’s music is at turns lulling, surprising and inspiring.

The brainchild of vocalist Weish and instrumentalist Din, this indie-electro duo has been creating their hypnotic brand of music since their formation in 2013. Formerly teachers, the duo left the world of academia to pursue their passions in music.

The band’s debut full-length album soma was released in 2015, and was influenced by a diverse range of literature and movies (the album’s name is a nod to Aldous Huxley’s dystopian novel Brave New World).

Tracks like juvenile, song six and disquiet are bound to have you feeling pensive, nostalgic and hungry for more.

Music available on: Spotify and the band’s official website.


Genre: Rock/Metalcore

If crushing guitar riffs, relentless double bass drum work and complex rock harmonies are your jam, be sure to check this band out.

A legend in Singapore’s underground rock scene, Caracal has been pumping out hard-hitting riffs and frenetic post-hardcore numbers since its formation in 2008.

Lead vocalist Rachel Lu’s vocal range, gritty timbre and blues-tinged delivery is on full display on headbanging tracks like Hook Line Sinker and Mouth of Madness, from their 2018 EP Take It Apart And Put It Back Together.

Music available on: Spotify and Bandcamp.

Charlie Lim
Image of Charlie Lim, a Singaporean singer-songwriter Photo by Lee Chang Ming / Charlie Lim Music

Genre: Pop

Local singer-songwriter Charlie Lim’s music has evolved over the years into a mix of acoustic melancholia, neo-soul, post-rock and electronic pop.

This gifted musician has been composing heartfelt electro-pop tunes for decades, drawing inspiration from music legends like Jeff Buckley and John Mayer. Funk and R&B-inspired tracks like Pedestal and the mellow electro beats of Circles show off these eclectic influences.

He launched his debut self-titled EP in 2011, and has been making waves across the island and the region since, with sold-out performances at the Mosaic Music Festival and #1 spots on Singapore’s iTunes with two albums, Time/Space and Check-Hook.

Music available on: Spotify, iTunes and the artiste’s official website.

Gentle Bones
 Image of Joel Tan (also known as Gentle Bones), a Singaporean singer-songwriter

Genre: Pop

With his youthful voice, catchy melodies and pensive lyrics, it’s no wonder that Joel Tan—who goes by the stage name Gentle Bones— is one of our island’s most popular artists.

His debut, self-titled EP hit number #1 on the iTunes chart when it was first released in 2013, and the young artiste made waves by becoming the first Singaporean artiste to sign with Universal Music Singapore two years later.

Ideal for fans of bands like Coldplay, this talented artiste’s songwriting talents are on full display on tracks like Settle Down (you’re bound to find yourself humming the chorus after just one listen).

Music available on: Spotify, iTunes and various other platforms.

Hanging Up The Moon
Digital illustration of Hanging Up the Moon band

Genre: Acoustic

The brainchild of Sean Lam—one of the founders of the now defunct but still legendary local band Concave Scream—Hanging Up The Moon pens meditative, complex acoustic tracks that make for the perfect accompaniment to a rainy day.

Despite having a day job as an award-winning interactive designer, Sean’s output in the realm of music has been prodigious, with four full release albums under his stage name.

The artiste’s latest EP—For The Time Being— comprises four plaintive tracks that feature his trademark dreamy vocals, plaintive lyrics and subtle instrumentation. New tunes like For The Time Being and Sunrise To Sunset make worthy additions to any acoustic music aficionado’s playlist.

Music available on: Spotify and iTunes.

Wicked Aura

Genre: Instrumental

While the term ‘instrumental’ may sound all-encompassing, Wicked Aura’s music is anything but generic.

Fusing genres as diverse as samba, afrobeat, punk and reggae, the band truly epitomises Singapore’s status as a global city. The band first started out performing as energetic street performers in 2003, and have since shared the stage with music industry luminaries like Hoobastank, The Black Eyed Peas and rock legend Robert Plant of Led Zeppelin.

From the wah pedal-infused guitar line of Brothers Gonna Work It Out to the syncopated, metal-inspired beats of Louder Than Light, this band’s musical mastery is something to behold.

Music available on: Spotify and the band’s official website.