We continue to shine a spotlight on the biggest and best emerging acts from across the UK. Each Monday, we ask one of our esteemed tippers to select five of their hottest tips to be featured on the site throughout the week.
Next up we have Trellis Records founder (Axel Flovent, Brooke Bentham, Mat Hunsley) and Coffee House Sessions Platform Manager Chris Smith, one of our regular tippers and a focal point in the UK music scene, delivering promo tours for the likes of Izzy Bizu, Seafret and Tom Walker.
Discover some of the best new artists and bands around right now with Chris’ tips below.
I’ve worked with these guys on a few shows now and they always kill it.
The North London duo initially bonded over a shared love for soul, jazz and hip-hop, but whilst their music amalgamates all three genres, their incredibly rich and detailed compositions only tell half the story. Singer Gina Jane has serious pipes, and I’ve seen many a jaw drop when producer Jacob Lobo busts out the sax and these two take things to the next level.
Picking up early support from Earmilk, BBC Radio 1Xtra and Spotify, GeeJay are making friends in all the right places, and I’d implore anyone reading this to check them out live.
It’s coming home.
I’m not a particularly patriotic person but Junodream’s sound is quintessentially British, and as such they’re the sort of band that make me feel like everything’s coming up Milhouse for us as a nation.
Wearing their influences on their sleeve, listening to Junodream feels like a breath of fresh air despite borrowing heavily from the playbook of ‘90s indie. Music built for lazy summer days, the band have a few releases online but new single ‘Fire Doors’ is by far their best track yet. It’s the sort of track you expect to hear from a band at their creative zenith rather than one just starting out so who knows where Junodream will go from here, but on the evidence presented so far they could just be the shot in the arm that guitar music needs right now.
One piano, one mic, one take. That’s all it took for Benedict Cork to blow everyone away with his live recording of original track ‘Ghost’.
It’s a song that anyone who’s suffered heartbreak can resonate with, although those that prefer their music a bit less weepy might want to give this one a miss.
Even so, tracks like ‘Ghost’ quickly find their audience. So although there’s nothing else to go on bar this one live recording, the strength of this one song alone is surely enough to suggest that this lad is a star in the making.
Flying criminally under the radar right now, BRIT school alumni Dayo Bello is surely one of the most exciting new voices emerging out of London right now. One listen to the understated ‘Mine’ or the dreamy ‘You’ is enough to allay all your worries and stresses, such is the quality of Dayo’s vocal, which dovetails beautifully with the deliberately understated instrumentation.
Still only 20, it may be a little while yet before Dayo comes to release an album, but it’s one that I can’t wait to hear.
There are a few singer-songwriters emerging from the north east that I’m pretty excited about right now (Brooke Bentham, IMOGEN, Sam Fender) but none more so than Martha Hill. Originally from a remote Scottish peninsula but now based in Newcastle upon Tyne, Martha’s debut single ‘Spiders’ is picking up a lot of traction right now, with backing from The Line Of Best Fit, BBC Radio 6Music and Spotify only adding to the hype.
You get the feeling that this is one brand new artist who will last the distance. Martha has been touring the UK and Europe pretty much non-stop these past eighteen months – supporting the likes of Let’s Eat Grandma and Mahalia during that time – and the sense of community at her live shows is truly something to behold.
It feels like this is just the start of Martha’s journey, and I’m really excited to see how far it takes her.