IoS Sounds of 2013: Pop


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First, a seasonal recommendation, for though decorations are down and detoxes are underway, blow me down if I haven't found just the thing to soundtrack this bleak midwinter: Pedestrian Verse from Scots rockers Frightened Rabbit. Out in early February, it sees their marriage of grimly poetic lyrics and gustily anthemic choruses more on point than ever.

Less masochistically, I'm also looking forward to a raft of incoming dance-pop LPs, from the debut of It-MC Azealia Banks to new ones from dubstep diva Katy B and Swedish disco chanteuse Sally Shapiro. Staying in Sweden, April sees the return of The Knife, while in March, expect to be entranced by John Grant's stunning second LP, which sees the troubadour adding dark synth-pop textures.

As for newbies, instead of regurgitating the BBC "Sound of …" list, let me flag up three as-yet less-heralded names: dreamy electro-soul crooner Deptford Goth, sonorous electro-country singer Daughn Gibson and noirish Brooklyn duo MS MR, who sound something like Lana Del Rey minus the icky submissiveness. Oh, and then there's the prospect of a new-and-improved Charlotte Church, the ex-voice of an angel reconfiguring herself as the voice of an anguished shaman, judging by her Björk-like makeover on recent single "Glitterbombed".