Introducing… the music you'll be hearing on your radio next year

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

 

An Irish country-rock band and a Native American rapper are among 15 acts vying for the title of the BBC's Sound of 2013 – the annual award which attempts to predict which musicians are due to hit the big time next year.

Indie, synth-pop and hip-hop are all represented, as well as the usual array of pop acts. It may not be an exact science, but inclusion on the annual list often heralds coming stardom.

However, it is not always the eventual winner who goes on to dominate the nation's airwaves and iPods. Adele won in 2008 and went on to find global success, but Florence + the Machine finished third the following year and are now arguably more famous than winner Little Boots.

Votes from 213 "influential UK tastemakers" were counted to compile the list, which this year includes 17-year-old pop act A*M*E, 20-year old south Londoner Arlissa – who has already recorded a single with US hip-hop star Nas – and classically trained soul singer Laura Mvula from Birmingham.

Also included is Angel Haze, a Native American rapper, alongside 17-year-old British singer King Krule. They join Glasgow band Chvrches, Dublin four-piece Kodaline, and Palma Violets. As well as indie band Peace, Irish country-rock band Little Green Cars and 22-year-old singer-songwriter Tom Odell are included. AlunaGeorge, Haim and Savages complete the longlist.

The first award was handed out in 2003, to US rapper 50 Cent. Since then, the list has been topped by Keane, The Bravery and Corinne Bailey Rae. Singer Mika won in 2007 and was followed by Adele, Little Boots and Ellie Goulding. The two most recent winners were Jessie J and Michael Kiwanuka.

Most of the artists included on past lists have gone on to have successful careers. But sometimes, it underestimates the star quality of certain acts: Lady Gaga came only sixth in 2009, but has now sold an estimated 23 million albums and has almost 32 million Twitter followers.

BBC Radio 1 DJ Huw Stephens, who will announce the final three acts in the new year, said: "This year's Sound of 2013 longlist is an exciting and vibrant one, which I think bodes well for the year ahead. It's always a varied list that surprises people, causes debate and speculation about the state of the music scene.

"For me, it's an exciting time of year, where we don't really know what the year will bring with new music, but this helps give people an indication of what might sound good."

The top five acts will be announced simultaneously on the BBC News website and Sound of 2013 website. Stephens will announce the winner live on BBC Radio 1 on 4 January.

Sound of 2013: the 15 contenders

AlunaGeorge

It's pretty much perfect modern pop. Aluna Francis is a really fascinating frontwoman and it's nicely produced by bandmate George Reid.

A*M*E

With the backing of a major label behind her, you'd be a fool to bet against this 17-year-old. I can't see what the fuss is about, though; it's a bit style over substance.

Angel Haze

The best female rapper to emerge in the past five years. Her flow is incredible and she's making better music than her rival Azealia Banks.

Arlissa

I find her music a bit naff but, again, people seem confident she's going to be huge.

Chvrches

This Scottish electropop band make pleasant enough music but I can't see them becoming all that big.

Haim

These LA-based sisters have drawn comparisons to Fleetwood Mac with their modern blending of folk and R&B. 2013 will be their year.

King Krule

Formerly known as Zoo Kid. Don't let the fact he went to the Brit School put you off; he's really rather special. He'll do very well next year.

Kodaline

Dull, dull band from Dublin. For fans of Coldplay, moaning, and maudlin guitar tracks.

Laura Mvula

She certainly has an incredible voice. Mvula has been nominated for the Brits Critics' Choice Award and seems destined for stardom.

Little Green Cars

Absolutely nothing new; unsure how anyone can really get excited about them.

Palma Violets

It will be great to see what these guys do next year; everything this indie band has put out so far has been cracking. Their track "Best of Friends" was voted song of 2012 by NME.

Peace

This Birmingham band (along with Palma Violets) should assure anyone that there's still plenty of excitement in guitar music.

Savages

This all-female post-punk band are fantastic but I can't see them setting the charts on fire. Try to see them live – that's when they're at their best.

The Weeknd

Twenty-two-year-old Canadian Abel Tesfaye has been making waves for quite some time. Last year's mix tape House of Balloons was deservedly considered as among the finest outputs of 2011. Hopefully he'll really break through next year.

Tom Odell

The Jeff Buckley comparisons are premature but he's certainly a singer-songwriter with a little bit of bite.

Arts and Entertainment
Will there ever be a Friends reunion?
TV
News
Harry Hill plays the Professor in the show and hopes it will help boost interest in science among young people
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
A Van Gogh sold at Sotheby’s earlier this month
art
Arts and Entertainment

MusicThe band accidentally called Londoners the C-word

Arts and Entertainment
'Africa' will be Angelina Jolie's fifth film as a director

Film 'I've never been comfortable on-screen', she says

PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment

books
Arts and Entertainment
One Direction go Fourth: The boys pose on the cover of their new album Four

Review: One Direction, Four

music
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
'Game of Thrones' writer George RR Martin

Review: The World of Ice and Fire

books
Arts and Entertainment
Sean Bean will play 'extraordinary hero' Inspector John Marlott in The Frankenstein Chronicles
tvHow long before he gets killed off?
Arts and Entertainment
Some like it hot: Blaise Bellville

music
Arts and Entertainment
A costume worn by model Kate Moss for the 2013 photograph

art
Arts and Entertainment

music
Arts and Entertainment
Len Goodman appeared to mutter the F-word after Simon Webbe's Strictly performance

Strictly
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie T makes his long-awaited return to the London stage
musicReview: Alexandra Palace, London
Arts and Entertainment
S Club 7 back in 2001 when they also supported 'Children in Need'
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Bruce Forsyth rejoins Tess Daly to host the Strictly Come Dancing Children in Need special
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Dornan plays Christian Grey getting ready for work

Film More romcom than S&M

Arts and Entertainment
Keira Knightley and Benedict Cumberbatch star in the Alan Turing biopic The Imitation Game

Review: The Imitation Game

film
Arts and Entertainment
The comedian Daniel O'Reilly appeared contrite on BBC Newsnight last night

comedy
Arts and Entertainment
The American stand-up Tig Notaro, who performed topless this week

Comedy...to show her mastectomy scars

Arts and Entertainment

TVNetflix gets cryptic

Arts and Entertainment
Claudia Winkleman is having another week off Strictly to care for her daughter
TV
Arts and Entertainment
BBC Children in Need is the BBC's UK charity. Since 1980 it has raised over £600 million to change the lives of disabled children and young people in the UK

TV review A moving film showing kids too busy to enjoy their youth

Arts and Entertainment
Richard Flanagan with his winning novel

Books Not even a Man Booker prize could save Richard Flanagan from a nomination

Arts and Entertainment
Bryan Cranston will play federal agent Robert Mazur in The Infiltrator

Books
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    US immigration: President Obama ready to press ahead with long-promised plan to overhaul 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?

    Immigration: Obama's final frontier

    The President is ready to press ahead with the long-promised plan to overhaul America's 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?
    Bill Cosby rape allegations explained: Why are these allegations coming out now? Why didn’t these women come forward earlier? And why has nobody taken legal action?

    Bill Cosby rape allegations explained

    Why are these allegations coming out now? Why has nobody taken legal action? And what happens next for the man once thought of as 'America's Dad'
    Four years of excruciating seizures caused by the 1cm tapeworm found burrowing through a man's brain

    You know that headache you’ve got?

    Four years of excruciating seizures caused by the 1cm tapeworm found burrowing through a man's brain
    Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?

    Scoot commute

    Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?
    Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film

    The Paul Robeson story

    How an American icon was driven to death to be told in film
    10 best satellite navigation systems

    Never get lost again: 10 best satellite navigation systems

    Keep your vehicle going in the right direction with a clever device
    Paul Scholes column: England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil

    Paul Scholes column

    England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil
    Michael Dawson: I’ll thank Spurs after we win says defender as he prepares to return with Hull

    Michael Dawson: I’ll thank Spurs after we win

    Hull defender faces his struggling former club on Sunday ready to show what they are missing. But he says he will always be grateful to Tottenham
    Frank Warren column: Dr Wu has big plans for the professionals yet he should stick to the amateur game

    Frank Warren column

    Dr Wu has big plans for the professionals yet he should stick to the amateur game
    Synagogue attack: Fear unites both sides of Jerusalem as minister warns restoring quiet could take 'months'

    Terror unites Jerusalem after synagogue attack

    Rising violence and increased police patrols have left residents of all faiths looking over their shoulders
    Medecins sans Frontieres: The Ebola crisis has them in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa

    'How do you carry on? You have to...'

    The Ebola crisis has Medecins sans Frontieres in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa
    Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

    Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

    Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks, reports Patrick Cockburn
    Underwater photography competition winners 2014 - in pictures

    'Mysterious and inviting' shot of diver wins photography competition

    Stunning image of cenote in Mexico takes top prize
    Sir John Major: Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting

    Sir John Major hits out at theatres

    Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting
    Kicking Barbie's butt: How the growth of 3D printing enabled me to make an army of custom-made figurines

    Kicking Barbie's butt

    How the growth of 3D printing enabled toy-designer to make an army of custom-made figurines