We’re in an age where music blogs and streaming sites have a huge influence on which artists become breakout acts. For emerging artists, a commanding online presence, word of mouth and a little bit of luck is sometimes all they need to be the next “it” band. On the flip side, there’s an over-saturation of bands with similar sounds all trying to get noticed — so where does one start to discover new music?
As someone who is constantly searching out interesting music, I often turn to the bigger and more influential music websites for recommendations, assuming they’ve already weeded out acts. However, I find it difficult to listen to everything and still have time for things like, ahem, homework. Still, there’s always that gem you discover that makes all the time spent worth it.
As such, I’ve compiled a handful of new bands that have caught my attention and who I think could become the next hot thing in 2013.
Haim, also the last name of the band’s three sisters, has been generating a huge amount of buzz in anticipation for their first full-length out later this year. Their sound is bold and confident, with all three girls singing and playing off of each other’s distinct voices while sharp percussion and jumpy guitar licks are at the forefront. Any of the songs they’ve released so far will have you hand clapping and bobbing along to their infectious pop-rock.
Similar to: Twin Shadow, Fleetwood Mac
Half Moon Run’s debut album actually came out last March, but they’re only starting to make their mark this year. The moody Canadian three-piece focuses on the multi-part vocal harmonies paired with softly strummed guitar and intricate drumming. They toured with Wintersleep last year and are opening for Mumford & Sons in their European tour, so that’s got to mean something.
Similar to: Local Natives, Patrick Watson
Right in line with the current electro-pop trend, Glasgow band Chvrches makes emotional, glitchy dance anthems that are heavy on the layered synthesizers. Singer Lauren Mayberry has an adorable but surprisingly powerful voice that fits perfectly with the group’s affinity towards big pop choruses. Even though their first EP doesn’t drop until next month, Chvrches is my early pick for a surprise set at Sasquatch this year.
Similar to: Purity Ring, Grimes
“The Mother We Share”
Singer-songwriter Winston Yellen, otherwise known as Night Beds, makes the sort of sensitive acoustic guitar folk tunes that only bearded dudes are allowed to make. Even sans the clichéd facial hair, Night Beds debut album, Country Sleep, wrings out pools of emotion with his falsetto and tender lyrics.
Similar to: Bon Iver, Fleet Foxes
“Even If We Try”
Gold & Youth
Influential Canadian music label Arts and Crafts continues to branch out from their Broken Social Scene days with one of their latest signings, Gold & Youth. Melancholy guy-and-girl vocals overlap pulsing synth and subdued dance rhythms in the two songs the band has so far released. I’m hoping the same slow burn is featured on their first full-length album, which is set to be released sometime this summer.
Similar to: Stars, Diamond Rings
“Time to Kill”
The remnants of chivalry still linger today, especially in the dating world.