January gets a bad rap. The received knowledge, of course, is that it sucks; that we’re all thoroughly skint, sober and miserable at the prospect of another six months before we can feel the sun on our faces.
January does have one saving grace, however, and that is the return of music. Gone is the dirge of X Factor detritus and Christmas novelties; in their place comes a torrent of new acts and bands, some of whom may even come to shape our next days, months and seasons.
Many of these will be playing at the Eurosonic Nooderslag festival which goes down next week in Groningen, Holland. It’s kinda like a wintry version of The Great Escape in Brighton or South By Southwest in Texas, and sees the great and good of Europe’s new breed taking the stage in front of a music industry-packed audience.
There’s shitloads of great artists playing, so to help you find your way through the melee here’s a pick of those I’ll definitely be tracking down.
A bunch of my mates have been going hard on Roosevelt's self-titled album since it was released in August. By proxy, I’ve heard the tunes at parties or down the beach and really that’s their spiritual home. Splicing elements of disco, house, yacht rock and basically every fun music genre you want playing on a festival cider bus, the summer beckons large for the man from Cologne.
Honestly I’d never heard of these guys before writing his feature, but they’re from Finland, formed in 2013 and apparently they used to sing in English. They don’t now, and it really doesn’t matter as tunes like ‘sä et tuu enää takaisin koskaan’ and ‘tuhatvuotinen harharetki’ charge out of the speakers in a craze of hooky, lo-fi, toolshed punk.
Áine Cahill shot to fame whilst playing a tiny tent at Glastonbury last summer, when a BBC employee spotted her and asked her to perform on their live TV coverage. She ended up trending on Twitter, and has since totted up a number of shows back home in Ireland and in London. Eurosonic is her first foreign appearance and songs like ‘The 27 Club’ fuse ‘Stay’-era Rihanna with a less histrionic Adele, with smart lyrics that bely her 21 years.
Britain’s urban music scene is arguably in its rudest-ever health, and drill crew 67 are placed to set the wave out of their South London streets. Their mixtapes have been well-received with Youtube views well-settled in the millions, but it was the track ‘Let’s Lurk’, with a guest appearance from grime royalty Giggs, that has helped get the word on every corner.
Youngr is one of those dudes it would be really fun to hate: a disgustingly handsome multi-instrumentalist who’s garnered over a million Youtube views for his frankly brilliant one-take videos. But he plays his rhythm-stacked summer pop with such easygoing élan it’s hard to think he’s anything other than a total dream in person, as well as onscreen. Bastard.
Get all the info on Eurosonic here