5. Asthmatic Kitty
Started by a group of artists including Sufjan Stevens, who currently holds the position of Minister of Aesthetics at the label, every Asthmatic Kitty release is worth paying attention to.
4. Luaka Bop
A label that started life as David Byrne’s way of bringing world sounds to the masses, reintroducing unforgettable artists such as William Onyeabor, they now represent great producers such as Floating Points. It’s fair to say Luaka Bop knows what’s hot.
3. Sacred Bones
Considering Jenny Hval, Marching Church, David Lynch, Pharmakon, Crystal Stilts, and Zola Jesus are all represented by this Brooklyn-based label, Sacred Bones truly know how to find great musicians.
2. Soundway Records
Reissuing the best music to come out of North Africa in the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s, as well as representing exciting bands like Flamingods, any release by Soundway is definitely worth a listen.
1. Exploding in Sound
Celebrating their fifth year this week, Exploding in Sound are truly one of the most exciting labels around. With Pile, Krill, Palehound, and Ovlov on their roster, as well as alumni like Porches, Lvl Up, and Speedy Ortiz—Exploding in Sound have made a habit of finding the best garage bands on the east coast of America.