At the turn of the year, we like to make a big list of our favourite ‘name your price’ / free music on Bandcamp, in part because it helps us mention albums we didn’t get a chance to write about, but also because such releases are prone to flying under the radar and the process of scouring Bandcamp for new music is always fun and fruitful.
However, as always, we want to point out that ‘free’ does not have to mean pay nothing in this context. Indeed, the title of the post says ‘free’ music because it’s snappier than ‘name your price’ music, but really that’s a convenient/attention-grabbing misnomer. Last year we spoke about how paying artists makes for the best soil in which to sow creative seeds, and things are no different now. Indeed, with the dawn of Spotify and the all-powerful algorithms, it is more important than ever to support independent artists and labels, and in reality there are already enough free ways to consume music that we don’t need to encourage another.
So please delve into the below list, curated entirely by humans, and spend whatever is left of your Christmas money when you stumble across something you like. We can vouch for the quality of everything here, so don’t be afraid to judge a record by its cover to begin with.
Here’s a handy mix featuring one song from each of the free / ‘name your price’ albums featured: