2018: Ones to Watch
In celebration of the New Year, we have compiled our top 10 artists and bands to look out for over the next twelve months.
Everybody’s favourite Scandipop sensation Sigrid is practically guaranteed to make waves this year after her well-deserved triumph in BBC Music’s prestigious Sound of 2018 poll. Since the release of the wonderfully anthemic “Don’t Kill My Vibe”, she has been stealing the spotlight both in her native Norway and across the world with her minimalistic production, heartfelt lyricism and rousing choruses. Pair that with her fresh-faced charm and effortlessly cool style and you have a starlet that’s set to dominate the industry.
Nilüfer Yanya holds the power to glide into your ears and reside in the pleasure centre. The 22-year-old West Londoner blends minimal yet rich percussion seamlessly with earworm hooks and her hypnotically husky vocals. Her recent EP Plant Feed flaunts her effortless charm and perfectly encapsulates the beautifully raw quality of her lo-fi sound; flourishes of jazz and trip-hop glide and stutter under muted guitar tics, creating the perfect canvas for Yanya’s smoky vocals. Hailed by NME as ‘one of Britain’s best young talents’ and recognised as “one to watch” by The Guardian, Nilüfer Yanya is certainly someone to feature heavily in your playlists this year.
Brockhampton is the ‘boyband’ you need to get listening to. Unlike anything that you’re used to, the 14-piece alternative hip-hop collective have released 3 albums in the last year and don’t seem to be showing any signs of slowing down. Their vocalists, producers, writers, graphic designers and creative directors are all included as band members, creating an unstoppable passion that comes through in every track. For intensely honest lyrics and irresistible, rock-hard beats, Brockhampton are one to get listening to for 2018.
With honey soaked vocals, Moses Sumney is the contemporary soul singer who after a number of EPs released his debut album Aromanticism at the tail end of 2017. The album is a series of melancholic tracks filled with lofty vocals that transport you into this space of heart-ache and loneliness whilst still being painstakingly beautiful. Highlight tracks include ‘Plastic’, ‘Don’t Bother Calling’ and ‘Quarrel’, but it’s difficult not to lose yourself to the album in its entirety. After touring with Solange and James Blake, Moses Sumney has managed to secure himself a spot at Coachella this year which will surely be the platform to catapult him to the fame he deserves.
Step into the kaleidoscopic world of psychedelic indie pop collective Superorganism and you senses will be assaulted by a many-hued, surreal, eclectic vision of delight. Originally shrouded in a cloak of mystery during the release of their bonkers debut ‘Something For Your M.I.N.D., the quirky eight-piece hail from all corners of the globe and have already turned heads with their zany performance on the series finale of Later… with Jools Holland. Their sample-heavy sound will flip your ears and turn them inside-out and you will be all the better for it.
George Van Den Broek aka Yellow Days, first turned heads in 2016 with his soul soothing Indie EP, ‘Harmless Melodies’. Gritty vocals lamenting lost lovers are eased with lazy melodies and slacking guitars, characteristic of his woozy lo-fi sound. At the astonishing age of only 18 and with his debut album ‘Is Everything Okay In Your World?’ just released, featuring the likes of Rejjie Snow, 2018 is sure to see more Yellow Days.
47SOUL are looking to reach new heights with their exhilarating electro Arab Dabke sound. Following their 2015 debut release, Shamstep, the Palestinian-Jordanian quartet are back with their follow-up, Balfron Promise, on 2 February. If their single release, ‘Mo Light’, is anything to go by, the album will prove to strengthen not only their impelling beats and frantic synth riffs, but also their pressing political lyricism. The release of Balfron Promise will be accompanied by several album launch shows throughout February across the UK, including Manchester, Birmingham and Liverpool.
2018 looks to be a promising year for Nils Frahm. Having had an extended break throughout 2017, the German pianist and composer returns with his new album, All Melody, on 26 January, expected to be full of stringed and synthesised soundscapes. The release is followed with a UK tour in February and March, which includes several nights at London’s Barbican Centre, before passing through Manchester and Glasgow.
Rival Consoles has been teasing his fans by posting a blurred 12-track folder on his Facebook page, strongly hinting at a new album in 2018. In accompanying this excitement, he has also posted some sketches and improvisations on Soundcloud over the last few months – when this new release finally surfaces, expected a great blend of soothing tones and juicy pulsations!
The Rhythm Method
The Rhythm Method’s mission is to conquer the middle ground between today’s mainstream pop and the supposedly more serious (read: pretentious) ‘alternative’ offerings. After a few years of well-received singles, 2018 is the year they’re set to release their debut album. Newcomers to the duo may find themselves a bit disconcerted: their kitschier stuff could be ripped straight from the theme of a bad TV show, and lyrical references to Cherie Blair, salad cream, and Princess Diana’s butler aren’t exactly pedestrian. But it works. Good pop songs that find humour in the banal could well be the light relief we need from the awaiting doomsdayism of 2018.
2018 Look Out Playlist
201847soulAlex Cooganalex gibbonbrockamptonDan Kinggrace barkerinthemiddleKieran BlythMatt Portmoses sumneymusicnew for 2018new musicnew music 2018nils frahmnilufer yanyaones to watchplaylistRival ConsolessigridSuperorganismthe rhythm methodyellow days