30 Of The Best New Zealand Female Indie Singers & Bands #1

Although New Zealand only has around 5 million inhabitants, the New Zealand indie music scene is internationally renowned far beyond the country's borders.

Some female indie singers from New Zealand, who are of course also listed in our music list here, have achieved international chart success and fame. 

But we also have New Zealand female indie artists in this list who are not so well known internationally, so there is plenty for you to discover here.

1. Fazerdaze - Lucky Girl

I'll start our list with Lucky Girl, a track by New Zealand indie songwriter Amelia Rahayu Murray aka Fazerdaze. Lucky Girl appeared on her 2017 debut album Morningside. The music video is shot in 4:3 format and is artistically sophisticated, reminding me a bit of New Order's Blue Monday music video.

  • Singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, music producer: Amelia Rahayu Murray
  • Song release date for her single Lucky Girl: 07 February 2017
  • Music genres: Dream pop, indie pop, indie rock, shoegaze

2. Lorde - Royals

New Zealand singer-songwriter Lorde hit the big time internationally with her debut single Royals and her debut album Pure Heroine. In 2013, she made it to number 1 with Royals and number 3 with Pure Heroine in both of the important American Billboard music charts - the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart and the Billboard 200 albums chart.[1]
The song Royals was already included on Lorde's 2012 The Love Club EP.

  • Singer-songwriter: Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O'Connor
  • Song release date for her single Royals: 3 June 2013
  • Music genres: Alternative pop, art pop, electropop

3. Princess Chelsea - Monkey Eats Bananas

Princess Chelsea released her first music video for the track Monkey Eats Bananas in 2009. The music video for the song is minimalistic. In addition to Princess Chelsea, a small stuffed monkey plays the leading role in the video. Sequences are shown in between: Among other things, the album cover of Phil Collins' LP No Jacket Required appears for a moment. The song release date for her single Monkey Eats Bananas was: June 2 2009

Princess Chelsea was in the band The Brunettes with Jonathan Bree and the video with him for their song The Cigarette Duet is a YouTube hit with so far over 100 million views.

  • Singer-songwriter: Chelsea Lee Nikkel
  • Music genres: Baroque pop, indie pop, synth-pop
  • Awards: Tate Music Prize for best album from New Zealand (won: 2023, for her album: Everything Is Going To Be Alright)

4. Kimbra - Settle Down

In 2011, a pop song with minimalist music was at the top of the singles charts worldwide: Somebody That I Used to Know by Gotye feat. For the two singer-songwriters Gotye and Kimbra, the single and the corresponding music video meant unprecedented fame and record sales.
Settle Down is Kimbra's debut single, which she released in June 6, 2010, around a year before Somebody That I Used to Know.

About Kimbra

  • Birth name: Kimbra Lee Johnson
  • Occupations as musician: Singer-songwriter
  • Music genres: Art pop, freak folk, indie pop, indie rock, pop, progressive pop, R&B
  • Some of her Awards: ARIA Music Award for Best Female Artist (won: 2011, 2012), Grammy Award for Record of the Year (won: 2013), New Zealand Music Awards for Best Female Solo Artist (won: 2012)

5. Aldous Harding - The Barrel

6. Ladyhawke - My Delirium

7. The Beths - Expert In A Dying Field

8. The Naked And Famous - Young Blood

9. Ruby Frost - Water To Ice

10. Bic Runga - Sway

11. Yumi Zouma - December

12. Bachelorette - Blanket

13. The Gladeyes - One Million Kisses

14. Teresa Bergman - Collateral Damage

15. Flip Grater - I Am Gone

16. Chelsea Jade - Laugh It Off

17. Mel Parsons - Offer Down

18. stellar* - Part Of Me

19. Alisa Xayalith - High Fidelity

20. indi - Demeter

21. Cloudboy - Teaboy

22. Vera Ellen - YOU! 

23. Nadia Reid - Oh Canada

24. Womb - Oceans

25. Anna Coddington - Little Islands

26. The Courtneys - Lost Boys

27. Lydia Cole - Love & Loss & Love

28. Zowie - My Calculator

29. Tiny Ruins - Olympic Girls

30. Tamaryn - Cranekiss


[1] Billboard. (n.d.). Lorde | Biography, Music & News | Billboard. https://www.billboard.com/artist/lorde/chart-history/hsi/

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