As hotly tipped acts such as Haim, Jake Bugg and CHVRCHES dominated our radio stations and Spotify playlists, you could say 2013 has been quite the year for emerging talent. Well, you’ll be pleased to know, it’s that time again. Where we pick out our eclectic mix of the top 5 bands we’ll be watching out for in 2014.
Secrecy is definitely this bands forte, where their unknown identity has enthralled and fascinated listeners since their track Platoon first went viral overnight. With their absorbing urban disco feel and anticipated 2014 tour, we expect to hear a lot more from the West London hailing vigilantes.
Listen to:Platoon, Heat
Spunky enough for the indie crowds and polished enough to appeal to the masses, Chloe Howl certainly seems like she’s got it sussed. With a similar sound and quirky appeal as Kate Nash and Lilly Allen, it’s definitely expected that Howl will be packing a feisty punch to make sure she appears in the 2014 charts.
Listen to: No Strings, Paper Heart
Who said Grunge is dead? Well underground alternative four-piece Wolf Alice don’t seem to think so. Imploding resonances of indie-folk-grunge, pieced together with Ellie Rowsell’s haunting vocals, the band have made way for an enthusing new sound.
Listen to:She, Blush
In 2014 we expect pigtails to have another fashion moment, and why may you ask? Well that’s because there’s a new superstar on the block called Moko. So far her trendy South-London vibe hasn’t gone unnoticed, however we expect much bigger things from the urban/garage/soul singer next year.
Listen to:Hand on Heart, Honey Cocaine
Stunningly simple, yet oh so charming, Wet deserve every accolade they obtain. Not since Daughter have we heard such motivationally pleasant sounds. Where the Brooklyn based three-piece have so far received rave reviews from across the pond. Let’s hope in 2014 they cross international waters and cast the UK under their graceful spell.
Remnant of musicians who have gone before them, Lindsey Troy and Julie Edwards are the Californian natives completing the line-up that is Deap Vally. As a female-fronted thrash rock duo who cites Thelma & Louise as their influences, you may be under the impression that these chicks deviate from your average rockers; you’re spot on.
Band interests have been listed as ‘knitting and crocheting’ although we can confirm things are never this tame on stage, as seen across a number of summer festivals. One track that stands out and packs more of a punch than the rest is ‘Baby I Call Hell’ a statement of intent of sorts for what to expect.
Guitars whirl, drums crash and the instrumentation is paced to a degree that will have you vibing hard in no time. No hints are given to where they’re headed next but one thing’s set in stone; it will undoubtedly be badass.
When it comes to breaking boundaries; Peace are no strangers, which is exactly what they’ve done on their latest release, a cover of Disclosure’s ‘White Noise’. Originally recorded as part of a BBC Radio 1 Live Lounge back in June, Peace’s take on the chart anthem went down a storm at Reading & Leeds Festival in August – as a treat for fans it’s now available on their Soundcloud account.
B-Town’s finest incorporated rip-roaring guitars and subtle, seductive vocals from Harry Koisser, leading listeners to the revelation that their version is far superior to Disclosure’s original cut.
Peace certainly have a natural talent for rescuing floundering sub-standard chart tunes and rustling up unstoppable forces beyond their reckoning. The only question that lingers is: What’s next? By Lauren Wade
Back with a new cut that’s already sent the internet crazy in anticipation for their forthcoming album, Arcade Fire’s ‘Reflektor’ surfaced online a day prior to its planned unveiling in New York. The Canadian band feature backing vocals from David Bowie on the track, however representatives for the band commented stating they can “neither confirm nor deny” the rumours, whilst Bowie’s reps put an end to the debates a day later confirming the news.
The track opens with crackling embers before a disco groove beat kicks in, and we come to the realisation that this track is unlike anything else the group have done before. Their combination of sounds is so strange on this offering, you wouldn’t think it works but oddly it does.
Out on October 29th – this major tune with circling refrains and catchy hooks won’t leave your head for quite some time. Get on it.
Sheffield’s rock four-piece Arctic Monkeys are back with a new album ‘AM’ that shifts perspectives, and introduces us to a different kind of game on their fifth release. However, it’s the B-side to latest track ‘Why’d You Only Call Me When You’re High?’ that boasts a fuller sound and glorious vocal arrangements.
‘Stop The World I Wanna Get Off With You’ sees drummer Matt Helders purring away in smooth falsetto, whilst it’s left to slick frontman Alex Turner to steer the track into sonic territory with his commentary of one very, very lucky girl.
The track is definitely a cousin of its A-side and those borderline Dr. Dre beats are present once more. There’s also one final niggling thought that this tune more than deserves a place on their current album, but all of Arctic Monkeys’ B-sides are excellent so that’s nothing new. If you like killer displays of vocal prowess, you’ll more than enjoy this gem.
Following their storming Reading set over the bank holiday weekend, Foals proved they’ve got what it takes to tackle festivals bigger than Latitude. Although, they were contained to an evening slot on the main stage festival, it wouldn’t come as a surprise if they were to be announced as one of next year’s headliners.
The Oxford quintet released their third studio album ‘Holy Fire’ in February; their stand-out performance made us revisit the album.
With talk of being ‘An animal just like you’, ‘Providence’ is by the far the best track to grace their latest record. They’re looking to go stadium and its tracks like these, with drummer Jack Bevan’s unrelenting assault on the ears that has us believing it won’t be long before they achieve stadium-filling success.
Frontman Yannis Phillipakis sets Foals’ musical bar high with blunt edged and frenzied riffs, which sounded even better live at Reading when Yannis delivered a masterclass in glitzy showmanship and how to wow crowds even when they’re dragging you into their mosh pits. Praise the Lord, Foals have rocketed themselves into another stratosphere and we’re enjoying the fruits of their labour. By Lauren Wade
Serving as one of the stand-out tracks from Irish folk-rock quintet Little Green Cars’ debut album Absolute Zero, current single My Love Took Me Down To The River To Silence Me will find listeners taking full advantage of the repeat button.
The band have previously supported Jake Bugg, and whilst they have stormed their way through a string of impressive festival slots including: SXSW, Coachella and Lollapalooza – their artistic credibility has always remained firmly intact.
Expect killer melodies and a headrush of emotions, as Faye O’Rourke switches to vocal duties and ramps up the grandeur. It’s a track that yields prolific results and will attract a larger crowd to their sinewy indie sounds.
The entirety of their debut release is prematurely polished, but this tune more so. The chart-toppers have conquered Ireland and America but now they’re tackling the UK and are ready to cause an impact. Obey your ears and add this gem to your collection.
Rattling round our skulls this week is Merseyside five-piece The Sundowners new track ‘Move With Time’. After their Glastonbury set on the BBC Introducing stage, the band made up of siblings and friends, begun work on new material. One of these new tracks was performed for the first time during soundcheck for their Queen of Hoxton gig in London last week.
Their latest offering is another sneering number. It’s a slice of howling rock that begs to be heard and is guaranteed to get any crowd bopping along to their old school styled beats and frills. The riffs are gorgeous and there is not a single downbeat moment.
In the same vein as the Fleetwood Mac inspired trio Haim. The Sundowners also contain the same qualities we could liken to the Californian descendants; however they do things a little differently, pursuing a different kind of groove, one that definitely rocks harder. Conditions are ever-changing for this band; it won’t be long before they’re playing much bigger stages at Glastonbury, and headlining venues twice the size of Queen of Hoxton. By Lauren Wade
The Vaccines have risen through the ranks pretty quickly since 2010. Their debut album ‘What Did You Expect from The Vaccines?’ was sealed with the initial charm that attracted fans, but on the follow up they kicked it up a gear, elongating the short, sharp bursts of intense pop rock that appeared on their debut effort. Second album, ‘Come of Age’ disappointed some fans, but you’re never going to please everybody.
The London four-piece announced details of their latest EP ‘Melody Calling’ recently, and the title track from this has been rattling around our minds ever since the first play. Recorded in LA, the American influence is tangible but this is a band who has not allowed themselves to lose their heads in LA.
The track is different from what we’ve heard before, and it certainly boasts palm trees and exotic vibes. The hooks may be more laidback, but still as catchy as The Vaccines never fail to conjure up. Whilst die-hard fans will dig this, others may be quick to dismiss it. Here’s one word of advice; put your doubts to one side, The Vaccines may have taken a more scenic route but they will still reign victorious when they finally release a third album. Mark our words.
Wolf Alice’s smash hit single Fluffy has been floating around for a few months, yet it’s impossible to tear yourself away from their early punk/grunge layered sound for too long. One user on the band’s Soundcloud account commented that they’re happy bands are “still making music like this” and this sums up our feelings about the London four-piece in one.
With talk of “searching for cheap thrills” and selling souls, lead singer Ellie Rowsell paints an apathetic picture, but it’s not all doom’n’gloom. The group’s distinct brand of moody grooves packs a punch with clattering drums, ferocious riffs and searing guitars that save the track from wallowing in its own despair.
North London’s finest will be pitching their tents at End Of The Road Festival in Dorset this August, so if you fancy grooving to their tunes, this festival is the place to be.