It seems 2016 has been memorable for so many reasons. While the losses of David Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen and Glenn Frey (to name but a few) will no doubt be at the forefront of mosts memories there were highlights that extinguished the aforementioned losses – if only temporarily.
The festival season was as popular as it’s ever been, the Stone Roses and Radiohead released new music and the music scene in general introduced us to a plethora of artists who look certain to carry their success through to 2017.
At GIGsoup we champion new music and with this in mind it’s time for our yearly feature on who we think will be on everyones radar in 2017…
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1. THE BIG MOON : A band that won’t be eclipsed in 2017
The Big Moon are rising. We’re pretty sure no-one will eclipse them in 2017. Juliet Jackson’s smart, funny, catchy and memorable songs appeal to the key youth market, but the London four-piece also enchant a wider audience.
BBC Radio One loves them and so do we. They have fun onstage and in their videos, and it’s contagious. Soph Nathan is a powerful guitarist, more than matching Jackson’s playing, and the rhythm section of Celia Archer (bass) and Fern Ford (drums and keyboards) is central to the group’s stirring post-indie sound. After a string of singles, their eagerly awaited album ‘Love In The 4th Dimension’ will be released on 7th April on Fiction.
2. BIG SPRING : The next big arena band the British public have been waiting for
Big Spring are on to something. Big riffs, hyper vocals coated in distortion and metal tendencies, there’s only one way up this progressive quartet and that’s the adjective that informs their title – ‘Big’! This year, saw them release two tracks-‘ Buzzards Leave The Bones’ a Queens of Stone Age, metal tinged riff saga and the more acute sounding and named- ‘On a Bamboo Sleeping Mat’. It’s the latter track where vocalist, Ollie Loring, comes alive with his distorted delivery in unison with the high-pitched wailing guitars- “I can tell when I’m on my own”- breathe the agony.
Big Spring’s job will be now to distance themselves from their contemporaries riff driven voltage- The Family Rain and Royal Blood. The summer circuit saw probably their biggest concert to date when they played at Reading festival and since have been touring with the Black Foxxes, another power trio. 2017 will be more touring, more music and more – as they said in an interview- “big fun songs”…and riffs please!
3. DUA LIPA : Sultry vocals, club beats and massive hooks
You probably already know Dua Lipa from her massive track ‘Hotter Than Hell’, but if that was a big song, her self-titled debut album, due for release in 2017, is going to tip her over the edge of pop stardom.
The artist was featured by many on their ‘Ones to Watch in 2016’ lists but the attention to detail and intricate drip-fed PR has enabled the London based artist to make sure her house is well and truly in order before certain success arrives in 2017. With sultry vocals, club beats and massive hooks, Dua Lipa has all the makings of pop’s next big thing, and you’re going to be glad you can say you caught her before she was a megastar.
4. KADHJA BONET : Queen of the L.A. underground will shine to a wider audience in 2017
One of six talented siblings raised in the San Francisco Bay Area by an opera singer father and a cellist mother, Kadhja Bonet was born to make music. A multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter, arranger and producer who’s also classically trained in violin, her collaborations with Itaj Shapira have been causing a stir on the L.A. underground scene since the release of her debut single ‘Tears for Lamont’in 2014. Subsequent singles released via Bandcamp throughout 2015 saw her sound expand into a cosmic blend of classic soul, jazz, R&B, folk, chamber pop and electronica, all revolving around her stunning and sophisticated vocals.
Despite her debut EP coming out last September, it’s the recently re-released version of The Visitor which is beginning to gain the attention of a wider audience. With a full-length album scheduled for spring next year, there’s a very good chance that Kadhja Bonet could be one of the stars of 2017.
5. TOM MISCH : Sold out shows both over the pond and in Europe – and all at the age of 21A neo-soul, jazz, hip-hop influenced master of arts is the only viable description to behold ‘Tom Misch.’ A guitarist turned singer and producer from London, Misch’s mix-up of influences combined with an eye for fresh new collaborators is a clear step up onto the forefront of fresh new music.
His 2015 release ‘Beat Tape 2’ showed a transition from bedroom beat artistry to fully fledged producer and reinforced by his recent release ‘Reverie’ in July he really is shifting gears. He’s just polishing off is 1st tour, returning from sold out shows both over the pond and in Europe this guy is setting up for a blinding 2017 all at the age of 21.
6. BLACK PEAKS : It’s safe to say 2017 is in the palm of their hands
In the whispers of alternative prog-rock, the legendary Black Peaks have had a massive 2016 – dotting around the UK on several headline tours, to festivals all over, and supporting the massive Deftones at Wembley Arena. Though not entirely new to the game, the Brighton 4-piece don’t have the vastest discography – but all of it is of an absolute unique quality. From the days where they went by the name of Shrine, to their debut album Statues released in April this year, the sound of Black Peaks truly is one to marvel at.
Vocalist Will Gardner’s voice is like no other, blending soft singing with almost glass-breaking vocals in an excellent balance, meaning no song released by the band is too heavy with either. The band have definitely worked incredibly hard this year, so its safe to say 2017 is in the palm of their hands – they’ve even already announced another headline tour for the start of the year.
7. CATTLE & CANE : Siblings Helen and Joe Hammill finally look primed for their big break-through
Led by siblings Helen and Joe Hammill, Cattle & Cane’s recent single 7 Hours provided a taste of what’s to come from their brand new album ‘Mirrors’ (expected Spring 2017) and picked up support from the likes of Clash, Dermot O’Leary and BBC Introducing in the process. ‘Mirrors’ marks a huge step up for the band and brings to mind the anthemic autumnal vibe of Bastille while nodding heads to more classic artists like Fleetwood Mac.
In between studio sessions, Thornaby group Cattle & Cane spent 2016 performing at acclaimed tastemaker events such as Reeperbahn Festival, Live At Leeds and Evolution Emerging, as well as shows in Germany, Belgium and Malta. With a 1,100 capacity headline show in their hometown of Middlesbrough on course to sell-out this Christmas, C&C look primed and ready for a breakthrough 2017.
8. NONAME : Personal, honest and intelligent rhymes about everyday realities
Slam poet-turned-rapper Fatimah Warner has arguably been hip hop’s breakout star of 2016, standing out among a number of up-and-coming MC’s from the Chicago area in recent years. Making her first appearance in 2013 with a verse on the ‘Acid Rap’ mixtape of fellow Chicagoan Chance the Rapper, it opened the door to further guest slots in the years that followed.
Her long-awaited debut mixtape ‘Telefone’ was self-released via Soundcloud at the end of July, with her personal, honest and intelligent rhymes about everyday realities over a blend of jazz-tinged neo-soul and R&B-flavoured beats have been met with nothing but praise. Dates opening for Lauryn Hill and a short European tour have capped off a very successful few months for the 25-year-old. With a fast expanding U.S. tour scheduled for early next year and the physical release of ‘Telefone’ also being planned, the future looks very bright for Noname and hip hop as a whole.
9. SAVANNAH DUMETZ : Superstardom beckons for fresh faced Londoner
Think Beyoncé at her most vulnerable. Think Lauren Hill at her most feisty. Now, blend those together and you’ve got Savannah Dumetz – a fresh-faced London soul singer with incredible vocal control and an instant appeal. A songwriter who’s been lyrically active since the early age of nine, this girl’s not only got talent, but the raw and real appeal of her R&B predecessors. Dumetz’s debut single ‘Naked’ succumbs to the fragility of a girl in love, yet endures with the tenacity of a woman unafraid to bare all – emotionally.
In November 2016, her acoustic performance at the BBC’s ‘Women 100’ commanded immediate attention – loud applause and roaring cheers bringing the theatre down with each song. And it was well deserved. Dumetz is a face to watch in 2017 as her artist profile grows in popularity and is inevitably embraced by a much wider audience. Girl, you know you’d better watch out… you’re gonna be a superstar some day.
10. HARRI GEORGIO : The UK Garage scene has a rising star
2016 has been a promising year for Leicester based artist, producer and DJ Harri Georgio, after receiving support from the likes of BBC Introducing, Kiss FM, EDM.com and Certified. The artists latest release ‘From Creation’ with Scrivs was championed by Ultra Bass Records and got to number 1 for track sales in the UK Garage chart in August this year. Georgio is working on various projects for 2017, showing his versatility as a producer, including working with and developing his cousin Charlie Georgio, production for up and coming singer and rapper Elona Jeta as well as collaborating with Leicester MC SunSun, of Grime collective SDR.
As an artist, Georgio is taking a fresh approach by using his own vocals on his fourth coming material, and claims not be focusing on specific genres moving forward. The artist has a lot to offer both as a producer and artist, and will definitely make his mark on the music scene in 2017 both behind the scenes and at the forefront.