As a music fan I can speak for everyone when I say there is absolutely nothing better than discovering a new band or artist from the fringes of the industry, someone that sound so fresh and different as well as exciting. 2019 is going to be a big year for many of the music business’ big stars, but these are my ones to watch that you may not have heard before:
A band well and truly on the rise, Sheffield based post-punk rockers SHEAFS had a coming-of-age 2018 with surely more excitement to come this year. They supported Greta Van Fleet on a European tour, sold out their first ever headline tour, performed huge sets at festivals such as YNOT and Kendall Calling, and even got airway play from Radio X and BBC Radio 1. More singles could be about to follow as they bring the carnage time and time again at their shows.
Listen to This Is Not a Protest here:
Dream-pop, indie-synth, whatever you may call it, China Lane have it. The Manchester born and bred outfit have been a close connection of mine through my family connections with producer Jack Candela, and seeing them blossom into what they have is mesmerising. They sold out shows across the nation, got a million streams on a song and performed at a unique Ben Sherman show last year; with 2019 looking like the year the hard work finally pays off. Don’t miss out on these guys, they could soon be absolute staples on everyone’s summer playlists.
Listen to latest single Feel Good here:
BBC Introducing, Radio X, BBC Radio 6 Music and more have supported these guys’ major rise, and they could be about to breakout into the mainstream very very soon. Highly reminiscent of the dance-infused indie rock of the likes of Vampire Weekend and Bombay Bicycle Club, Cassia have put a smile back on the face of indie music; while also nodding to early influences of the likes of Talking Heads. Greg James loves them, I love them, and you should too. Get on board and join their rise to fame in 2019.
Listen to Paradise Beach here:
Birmingham indie rockers The Clause have a raw sound that has been bled dry from the current music industry. The chemistry of the band is apparent as they combine groovy bass riffs with catchy vocal melody and slick guitar licks. When I first heard them I described the sound as similar to that of The Cribs, so if that’s your sound then you’re sure to absolutely love these guys. They’re about to set off on their first headline tour across the UK, including a 500 capacity homecoming gig in Birmingham. After speaking to Liam Deakin, the band’s lead guitarist, he told me they wanted to be “the biggest unsigned band in Birmingham”, a target I feel very confident they can reach. New material is on the way so keep your ears peeled, this could be the moment they blow up.
Listen to Sixteen here:
Our close friends at Viberant, Whale Hill are a Middlesbrough based alt-rock three piece band who possess unruly levels of live energy and a load of fun in their music. Vocalist Reece Mallett has soft tones to balance the lively riffs and enigmatic drums of their tunes. With just two songs released so far, the only way is up from here for the boys as they will look to build on their early success; probably with an EP later in this year. Watch this space.
Listen to debut single Broken Rose here:
An obscure listen of course, but audiobooks create such an intriguing sound that it becomes rather hard to ignore. Lead singer Evangaline Ling’s star power on the microphone is there for all to see and the production is rich and ready to break through to the commercial ear. Their debut album is mega and has gained serious praise from Radio 6 Music DJ Lauren Laverne, who described the group as “so exciting” before stating they were “going to have a great 2019”. We agree with Lauren, and you should check them out right now.
Listen to their brilliant debut album Now! (in a minute) here: