Livewire's Ones To Watch 2018
Every Sunday, Livewire's Music Team meet to run through some of the best new and emerging artists. In previous years we've discovered Sigrid, Bad Sounds, Black Honey, and loads more. We've gone through some of the most exciting artists featured on our weekly New Music Playlist, and here are our top pics for 2019 stardom.
Livewire's #1 - Fontaines D.C.: During a year in which punk rock has had a notable resurgence in the U.K, Fontaines D.C. have barged their way to the forefront of the movement. The Irish-based band captured a large audience in part due to their high-intensity dark sound and chaotic performances that tore houses down across the country on their recent tour. However, it is hard to argue that the main appeal of Fontaines D.C. is anything other than lead singer Grian Chatten’s distinctive Irish twang that allows him to flow seamlessly between dreamy wanderlust, sneering contempt and snarling anger which has made him one of the most compelling vocalists in recent years. There are exciting prospects on the horizon for Fontaines in 2019 as they plan to release their debut, full-length album which is bound to make waves in the punk scene, but if they are able to live up to their potential and produce a polished album that expands on the fresh and interesting ideas of their singles, then they will surely grab the attention of the wider rock community and achieve the mainstream success they so greatly deserve.
Slowthai: Nobody’s had a busier year than Northampton’s Slowthai, who struggles to fit into any label you give him, at times he embodies UK grime, at others, it would be easy to call him punk, but no matter what title you put him under, he is without a doubt one of the most exciting things about UK music right now. After dropping scattered singles leading up to 2018, Slowthai set himself aside from his competition with distinctive, aggressive delivery and off-the-wall lyrics but nobody was ready for what he had in store for 2018. As the year went on he just seemed to drop single after single after single, culminating in the RUNT EP, which features grime bangers such as ‘Drug Dealer’ alongside some more introspective tracks such ‘Disneyland’. With his latest song ‘Doorman’, Slowthai teams up with esteemed producer Mura Masa for an absolute stonker of a track that blurs the line between modern punk and grime, taking the best aspects of both in a genre-blending, aggressive and political banger. In a lane where everybody is struggling to make themselves seen, Slowthai brings a unique energy to the genre, whatever genre it is he fits into, that is.
Jimothy Lacoste: 18-year old Jimothy Lacoste only began posting music two years ago and is already becoming very successful! Lacoste made his breakthrough when he released the single ‘Getting Busy’ on YouTube in 2017. His iconic style and sharp wit has since won him a series of viral hits. When Jimothy released the video ‘Subway System’ earlier this year it became an internet sensation. The video was later taken down as Transport for London said footage of Lacoste riding his bike along the platform and standing on top of train violated safety regulations. Lacoste is yet to release an EP but has already played a number of festivals including Latitude Festival and Field Day, as well as playing an extensive tour of the UK. His concerts have the same ironic, playful performance style as his videos. He often projects tweets about his music behind him during gigs, which vary from high praise to total confusion. Jimothy Lacoste has emerged onto the new music scene re-creating the bedroom pop genre with absurd observational humour. He is certainly one to watch, whether that’s in the charts or dancing on top of a train!
King Princess: King Princess has her finger on the pulse of new alternative. She’s nonchalant, cool, and slick. And so is her music. Crashing onto the scene with her debut single ‘1950’, released in February, Mikaela Straus is about to explode. With a knack for writing killer pop songs and the industry background to make it big (her dad is a recording engineer), we can only expect her future releases to be just as stratospheric. Her songwriting style is neat and close, with twinges of catchy hooks and gentle melodies, and her tales of modern love touch young hearts across the world. Debut EP Make My Bed, released in May, is a writhing mass of pop grooves and layered lyrics. Latest single ‘Pussy is God’ undoubtedly solidified Mikaela as a soulful pop icon. There’s something of a Christine and the Queens and Lorde feeling in King Princess’ music, so if that’s anything to go by, she’s got a lot of proving herself to do. But she’s going to do it well.
Sorry: South London’s Sorry have only been on the up this year. Going from four kids making wobbly alternative to supporting the likes of Shame and Sunflower Bean, the quartet are on the brink of . The band have a careless, messy approach to their sound and their look--their tracks feel like they’ve been constructed in ten seconds flat, but in the best way possible. Perhaps it’s the lazy vocals or the swirling guitar notes, every sound feeling like a hazy, thick coalescence. Recently released ‘Starstruck’ has everything Sorry have made their sound and more--with every single, they’re building on their brand and they’re doing it well. Sorry have colourings of Let’s Eat Grandma and The Smiths with their laid-back but catchy indie pop sound, and they do it well.
You can catch all of our ones to watch on our official playlist here: