The U.K. music scene is in rude health when it comes to new artists. The BRITs Critic's Choice award for 2018 has been won by Drake collaborator Jorja Smith, who also made the BBC Sound of 2018 shortlist, alongside singer-songwriter Rex Orange County, and MCs Not3s and Yxng Bane. Here at The FADER, we wanted to shine a spotlight on some of the even fresher, under-the-radar names who deserve your love. Here are the artists we discovered and loved this year, and whose 2018 projects we are dying to get our hands on.
2. Coucou Chloé
6. Big Joanie
London’s most formidable new guitar band write hooky, shrapnel-tough punk anthems that rage against inequality, and have already found fans in Downtown Boys and sad13. Their 2018 debut album will win them a whole lot more. Read their Gen F profile.
This Manchester-based rapper and singer is carving out a niche all her own: jazz-influenced trap, drawing on her Angolan and Portuguese heritage, with a very British voice.
"Girl, I didn’t know you could get down like that!" Sawayama’s overhaul of millennium-era Top 40 sounds crystallized in the year’s most solid (and slept-on) pop EP, with intricate production and thoughtful lyrics that reward close listening.
Miink’s queasy take on R&B is reminiscent of what FKA twigs does so well: taking a familiar sound then turning it inside out and making something special. His debut single “Who Are You” is sparse and ominous.
11. Biig Piig
The sweetest voice in south London makes stoned-out jazzy songs that would sit perfectly on a playlist with Nilüfer Yanya and Jamie Isaac.
Sorry are a rock band formed by childhood best friends Asha Lorenz and Louis O'Bryen. Their slacker sound takes in elements of noise, blurry hip-hop beats, and folk, while their recent visual mixtape reveals a bold, distinctive vision.