Fed up with turning on the radio and hearing the same four or five songs, over and over again? Or do you just want to impress your mates by introducing them to artists they’ve never heard of? Regardless, we’ve got you covered. Here are 12 acts we think will be huge in 2017. But even if they’re not, at least you’ve got some great new tunes to crank up…
1 Avante Black
The alt-pop band made up of Swedish singer Ottilia Kjulsten, Swedish guitarist Emil Lloyd, Italian bassist Gabriele Acciardi and British drummer Dean Valentine Smith stormed the UK indie scene last year with their self-released anthem Imaginary Love. The band have since been signed by Different Recordings and they released a new single, Money, in November this year. Their sound is a powerful mixture of styles – cool pop vocals and flawless bass and drum grooves, all sewn together by siren-like synth melodies. Kjulsten describes it as “A Scandinavian siren in the dark,” music that’s “for everyone, dreamers especially.” It’s a sound you need to hear.
2 Billie Eilish
Billie Eilish is only 14 years old, but sounds wise beyond her years, with minimalist songs about the unfairness of love. She put her first track, Ocean Eyes, up on SoundCloud earlier this year, just for fun, after recording it with her older brother. Even though it’s been online for less than a year, it’s now been listened to more than two million times. Zane Lowe has called her “absolutely incredible,” and she’s been compared to Lana Del Rey.
3 Dua Lipa
The pop singer, songwriter and model comes from a very musical background – her dad is Kosovar-Albanian rock star Dukagjin Lipa. She has just been nominated for a Critics’ Choice at the next BRIT Awards and even though her self-titled debut album isn’t due out until next February, you’ve probably already heard some of her tracks (such as Be The One), which have been top ten hits worldwide.
Singer-songwriter Sophie Frances Cooke (she prefers to go solely by her middle name) was nominated for a Critics’ Choice award at this year’s BRITs. She has opened for Sam Smith and James Bay on tour and says her biggest influences are Carole King and Coldplay. Her debut album, Things I’ve Never Said, will be out in March, and one of the producers she worked with to make it is Howard Lawrence, one half of dance act Disclosure.
5 JP Cooper
The self-taught British singer-songwriter has released five EPs since 2012, but had his first big hit earlier this year, when he featured on Jonas Blue’s track Perfect Strangers, which reached No.2 in the UK charts and went platinum. He has since released a track of his own, September Song, and is currently busy working on his debut album.
6 Maggie Rogers
Maggie Rogers’ single Alaska went viral earlier this year, when she attended a masterclass at New York University with Pharrell Williams. It only took her 15 minutes to make the track, but she managed to bring Williams to tears with it. He said: “I’ve never heard anything that sounds like that.” She’s spending a lot longer on her debut album, out next year, though. Who knows what Williams will do when he hears that.
This indie band from Reading in the UK are on the rise at the moment. They played Glastonbury and Reading and Leeds festivals earlier this year, and they’ve supported indie bands including The Wombats and Circa Waves. Their debut album, Youth Is Only Ever Fun In Retrospect, is due to be released on Friday January 6.
Despite their name, this duo don’t make tender love songs. They make dark, brooding music and are influenced by acts like Tame Impala and The National. They first got together last year and have released three EPs, with a full-length album expected out later in 2017.
9 The Big Moon
This is a girl band with a difference, specialising in grungey songs about love and alternate dimensions. Their debut album, Love in the 4th Dimension, is out in April. They recorded it in just 12 days earlier this year with help from producer Catherine Marks, who has worked with the likes of Wolf Alice and Foals.
10 The Hunna
The four-piece rock band got together back in 2011, but only just released their debut album in August this year, having spent all that time touring and writing. Their name comes from the fact they give “100 percent” in their music, and they cite bands including Queen, and Kings of Leon as their inspirations. One of their latest singles, You and Me, was a hit in the US, and they’ve spent the last few months supporting American rock band Jimmy Eat World on tour.
11 The Japanese House
Twenty-one-year-old Amber Bain is the brains behind The Japanese House and she specialises in dreamy electro-pop. Bain counts rock band The 1975 among her biggest fans – she supported them on tour earlier this year. She took the name The Japanese House from a house she once stayed in, which was owned by Kate Winslet.
12 Will Joseph Cook
The industry took note of singer-songwriter Will Joseph Cook when he put his synth-infused indie pop songs up on YouTube. He was quickly signed up by Atlantic Records. The 19-year-old counts Radiohead and Joni Mitchell among his biggest musical influences and his music has been played on both BBC Radio 1 and BBC 6 Music. Spotify has also named him as one to watch.