Your new Dutch Playlist


This band of four is seen by many as the biggest Dutch rock band of the moment. Kensington’s lyrics are written in English, making them accessible for non-Dutch speakers, and as a result, the band is currently playing shows in other countries outside the Netherlands. Kensington’s lyrics are successful in representing life in an honest and direct way, by looking at love, anger, and everything in between. During the summer, you will be able to see them at quite some well-attended, popular festivals, including the non-Dutch Sziget. If you are more the concert-type of person, then you can try in November, when they will play five shows in the Ziggodome in Amsterdam, which can host 14,000 people per evening. Unfortunately, all five shows are already sold out.

Son Mieux

This band from the Hague is difficult to pin down. Generally, it could be classified as pop, but this hardly describes their creations well enough. Son Mieux brings together aspects of the pop, indie, and electric genres. Lead singer Camiel Meiresonne is said to write his songs late at night, which makes sense considering the band’s interest in depicting the struggles of early adulthood. Do not let the different mood of their intros in comparison to the rest of their songs scare you away. The end result of Son Mieux’s music is one of an immediate summer-vibe, and the band plans to bring this is to numerous small-scale venues during the upcoming festival season.

Lucas Hamming

This hippie-lookalike started making music at a very young age. Although the group’s name suggests it’s only its lead singer Hamming, he in fact has an entire instrumental band supporting him. Hamming can best be classified as pop rock with a darker, more serious undertone. His songs cover modern love (think Tinder dates), but also about more serious topics, such as illness and disease. Hamming’s song on lung cancer was announced to be the 2016 theme song of radio station 3FM’s serious request fundraising and his single Mojo Mischief has also been highly praised. Hamming is now doing touring to promote his new album, called Luck is For Suckers.

The Brahms

You may already know this band because of their single Golden, which was in the top charts during summer 2015. The four members, David, Tobias, Thomas, and Martin, came together at the Herman Brood Academy, a leading musical school in the Netherlands. Their musical education can be heard in their live performances: although The Brahms may still be young and inexperienced, they know their craft. Their genre can best be described as pop, indie, but also touches upon electric sometimes. The Brahms are often associated with Son Mieux, and both “summer music” bands know each other quite well and often perform at the same venues. Nevertheless, do give both bands a listen – they are remarkably different. Make sure to check out The Brahms at Bevrijdingsfestival Zeeland (Vlissingen, May 5th)!

Saving the best for last, Chef’Special can be considered as some of the biggest talents walking around the little piece of Earth that is the Netherlands. While it took them a while to get settled within the Dutch music charts, these five guys have found their place. Chef’Special has melted many hearts in 2015, with their single “In Your Arms”. Since then, they have grown enormously, and so has their fan base. Last summer, Chef’Special went on tour in the US alongside Twenty-One Pilots. Their music contains aspects of pop, but also the occasional rap, allowing them to tackle both intimate and more pumped-up songs. For example, where “In Your Arms” is more personal, “Because I Love You” is bold and exciting. Last month, Chef’Special released their new album Amigo in their hometown of Haarlem, proving that this band is well on their way to continued success.

Nienke Raaijmakers, Class of 2018, is a psychology and anthropology major from Tilburg, the Netherlands.

Featured image: Loburg

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