Ones to Watch: Adjacent Music Festival 2023


New Jersey’s inaugural Adjacent Festival will take place Memorial Day Weekend on May 27th & 28th in Atlantic City. In anticipation of the festival, we picked 6 up-and-coming acts that you need to see. With a lineup of almost 50 artists, we had a hard time choosing our Ones to Watch and wish we could feature each one. That being said, use this as a guide to plan out your weekend at Adjacent. If you are not attending, use this guide as a reference for new artists to add to your playlists.


Listen: “Hit Like A Girl,” “Beyond My Control,” “Say It (To My Face).”
Similar Artists: Stand Atlantic, Magnolia Park, Doll Skin

Pop-punk trio Meet Me @ The Altar are queer women of color who are rising stars in a scene still largely dominated by cis white males. Challenging the status-quo by recently completed their first headlining tour and releasing their debut album Past // Present // Future in March, the band comprised of vocalist Edith Johnson, guitarist/bassist Téa Campbell, and drummer Ada Juarez are quickly gaining fans with their refreshing take on the genre and are an act not to miss.

Listen: “So Alright, Cool, Whatever,” “She Wants Me (To Be Loved),” “Best Tears”
Similar Artists: The Greeting Committee, Jukebox The Ghost, Arlie

New Jersey natives The Happy Fits are changing pop-rock with their innovative use of electric cello, guitar riffs and creative melodies. The trio consisting of Calvin Langman on vocals and electric cello, Ross Monteith on guitar, and Luke Davis on drums first met in high school before forming the band. A decade later, The Happy Fits have established their bubbly yet electrifying sound; and as soon as the bow hits the cello we are sure you will become a fan.

Listen: “Rebel Girl,” “Growing Up,” “Oh!”
Similar Artists: Bikini Kill, illuminati hotties, Horsegirl

The Linda Lindas prove that age is just a number. Comprised of sisters Mila de la Garza (drums, age 11) and Lucia de la Garza (guitar, age 14), their cousin Eloise Wong (bass, age 13), and long-time family friend Bela Salazar (guitar, age 17), The Linda Lindas are the new generation of riot grrrl. The L.A. band is garage punk at its finest and teach us that we can do whatever we want at any age. 

Listen: “Good Girls (Don’t Get Used),” “Cloud 9,” “Painkiller”
Similar Artists: chloe moriondo, mxmtoon, Remember Sports

Starting as a solo singer/songwriter project for Chicago native Lili Trifilio, the now four-piece Beach Bunny skews the line between indie and pop-punk. Backed by Aiden Cada on bass, Jon Alvarado on drums, and Matt Henkels on guitar, Beach Bunny is still a band under the radar (but not for long) as the band has almost 7 million monthly listeners on Spotify. Now is the time to catch the band before they soon become festival headliners.



Listen: “Candy Coated Lie$,” “Glass Spiders,” “Wide Awake”
Similar Artists: Stand Atlantic, Yours Truly, AS IT IS

Manchester, England duo Hot Milk are emo power-pop at its finest. Already a massive success in the UK, Hot Milk are primed to take over the U.S. with their catchy choruses. Hannah “Han” Mee and Jim Shaw have yet to release a debut album (their first is scheduled for release in August) but have quickly gained fans by being unapologetic in who they are and invite fans to do the same.

Listen: “FUCK ABOUT IT,” “Stupid For You,” “Turbulent”
Similar Artists: State Champs, Point North, Real Friends

Waterparks is a band with a highly-dedicated fanbase, and rightfully so. The Houston trio of vocalist and guitarist Awsten Knight, guitarist Geoff Wigington, and drummer Otto Woods are the new generation of rock. Expanding their established rock & pop-punk sound into electro pop territory, Waterparks latest album INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY released earlier this April takes the band to a new level. 

Listen: “overwhelmed,” “GO F*CK URSELF,” “Love Abuser (Save Me)”
Similar Artists: poutyface, girli, MOTHICA

Royal & the Serpent (also known as RATS) is Ryan Santiago whose mix of hyperpop and experimental alt-rock have quickly gained her a following. Her electrifying performances and personal lyrics teach us to celebrate our messy emotions and know that its okay to feel that way. Artistic to the core, Royal & The Serpent is a visionary that you need to see.

Listen: “help_urself 2,” “TOO BIZARRE (juked),” “Dopamine”
Similar Artists: Grimes, tiLLie, Maggie Lindemann

Another artist embracing emotions and bringing awareness to mental health is Siiickbrain, the project of Caroline Miner Smith. Ranging from screamo-electro to raw acoustic tracks, Siiickbrain is not one to be put in a box. Hailing from North Carolina and currently residing in Los Angeles, Siiickbrain has already released four singles this year and we can’t wait to see what will come next. 

Tickets are still available for Adjacent Festival here.

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