Best Local Rock Bands In Seattle

August 8, 2013 5:00 AM

File photo of a person playing a guitar. (Photo credit: DAVID GANNON/AFP/Getty Images)

File photo of a person playing a guitar. (Photo credit: DAVID GANNON/AFP/Getty Images)

Seattle has given birth to its fair share of famous musicians and bands, including Jimi Hendrix, Heart, Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden. Each is still considered a local band even though they no longer frequent the dive bars around the Seattle area as they once did. Seattle is always brimming with new rock music talent, and according to the consensus of numerous Seattleites, these are your top picks for best local rock bands.

The Refusers

The Refusers are considered an indie rock band, having an alternative rock sound that incorporates some funk and reggae into the mix. The Refusers are rated as the No. 1 band in the rock genre on the Reverb Nation website and recently got to open at a music festival in Napa, California, for bands like The Black Keys, Jane’s Addiction, Kings of Leon and the Violent Femmes. The Refusers has a sound that has been compared to bands such as Rage Against The Machine, Soundgarden, Foo Fighters and The Black Keys. The band’s latest album, “First Do No Harm,” is now available and contains a variety of songs that bring awareness about medical system mistakes being one of the largest causes of death in the U.S.

Death Cab For Cutie

Formed in 1997, Death Cab for Cutie is another local indie rock band originally from Bellingham, Washington. In 2008 and 2012, Death Cab for Cutie was the voted the No. 2 Seattle band out of hundreds of nominees provided by Evening Magazine’s “The Best of Western Washington” poll. In all, Death Cab for Cutie has released seven albums consisting of alternative rock music, blended with indie rock and pop. The latest album, “Codes and Keys,” came out in 2011. For those wondering, the band got its name from The Beatles movie, “Magical Mystery Tour.”


Witchburn is a sultry mix of southern rock music that has been compared to the sounds of Janis Joplin, Heart, Black Sabbath and Ronnie James Dio. Lead singer Jamie Nova, who also fronts the local, all-female AC/DC tribute band, Hell’s Belles, gives an on-stage energy that is beyond compare and one you won’t find in any other female front woman in the Seattle area. The band primarily has metal roots and has great admiration for acts like Black Label Society, Down and Kyuss Lives. Each Witchburn performance will have fans grooving, head banging and raising their horns in triumph.

Related: Amateur Night: Best Places To Take The Stage In Seattle

Falling Blind

Formed in 2006 in the heart of Seattle, Falling Blind encompasses a rock-music sound that will remind you of popular bands like Breaking Benjamin, Chevelle and Hoobastank. This four-man Seattle rock band has had its music featured on TV shows and advertisements for “American Chopper,” “Auction Hunters,” “Vampire Diaries” and “Game of Thrones Poland.” Falling Blind’s energizing music can also be heard in the video game Saints Row the Third. Catch the group live around the Seattle area promoting its latest album “Comets,” released in 2011.

Klover Jane

Klover Jane is a band that Seattle is proud to call its own and its popularity has risen quickly over the last couple of years. Reminiscent of other Seattle bands like Alice in Chains and Mother Love Bone, Klover Jane has been called the “love child of Axl Rose and Andrew Wood” and is said to be the “greatest thing to come out of Seattle in a decade,” according to King 5’s Evening Magazine. The band has been nominated as one of Seattle’s best local bands and its passion and love for its music is evident in every mesmerizing guitar riff, body-invading drum beat and distinctly haunting vocal style.

Related: Best Places To Discover New Music In Seattle

Sue Gabel has been writing entertainment and travel-related articles in the greater Puget Sound/Seattle area since 1999. She writes about music, the Seattle scene and more. Her work can be found on