BBC Sound of 2013 – Longlist


sound of 2013

Image: BBC Sound of 2013

“The best way to predict the future is to create it.”

The highly anticipated BBC Sound of 2013 longlist has been announced. Marking its 10th anniversary, The Sound of 2013 showcases the rising stars for the year ahead. Previous winners have included 50 Cent, Adele, Ellie Goulding, and last year’s overall winner, Michael Kiwanuka.

The longlist is compiled by over 200 influential music experts, including broadcasters, producers & music journalists. The panel of taste makers submit their top 3 acts, before being whittled down to the top 15 longlist, and later followed by the top 5 shortlist. Last year’s top 5 included Frank Ocean, Azealia Banks,  Skrillex and Niki & the Dove and judging by the success they’ve had this year,  the ‘BBC Sound Of”  can been a catalyst for success.

So, who are the artists set to make a big impression for 2013?

        1. First up is London based duo AlunaGeorge (Aluna Francis and George Reid), who have put their own stamp on electronic music. Their debut single, ‘You Know You Like It’ and their follow-up EP ‘Your Drums, Your Love‘, infuses elements of R&B, bass, garage & electro-pop perfection. Having recently been nominated for the 2013 Brits Critics Choice Award, the duo complement each other so well, with Aluna’s unique vocals and Georges slick production. Except a debut album early next year as well as future headline gigs.
        2. A*M*E is 17 year old Amy Kabba, who over the years, has been greatly influenced by K-Pop and 90’s pop artists such as Nysnc and Backstreet Boys. Currently signed to Gary Barlow’s label Future Records, A*M*E has  toured with Olly Murs, JLS, Jessie J and The Wanted. A*M*E has co-written with the likes of Emelie Sande and Naughty Boy on her track ‘Found A Boy‘. Her latest single ”Play The Game Boy‘ was released in November.
        3. Rising US rapper Angel Haze, known for her rapid rap skills and raw honest lyrics, has already released a string of successful mixtapes, including the 14 track EP ’Reservation’ in July and 6 track mixtape ‘Classick’ in November. Her most notable tracks include ‘Werkin Girls’ and ‘New York’. Currently working on her debut album with Paul Epworth, the album will feature a collaboration with Rita Ora as well as her most recent collaboration with drum n bass quartet ‘Rudimental’ on their new single ‘Hell Could Freeze’.
        4. Arlissa, 19 year old singer/songwriter from South London, caught the attention of US hip hop sensation NAS, who featured on the track ”Hard To Love Somebody‘.  Arlissa brings a unique ethnic vibe to her music and her debut single proper ‘Sticks and Stones’, is set for release  in February 2013.
        5. Glasgow based trio Chvrches, made up of Lauren Mayberry (lead vocals), Ian Cook (synths/vocals) and Martin Doherty (synths/vocals), first made an impression online with their track ‘Lies’. The group received great support from BBC Introducing Scotland, followed by further live sessions with Huw Stephens. Their debut single ‘The Mother We Share’, combines elements of post punk and electronica, to create a dark synth-pop vibe. Having supported Passion Pit on tour, the trio have a busy year ahead, including performance at SXSW and a debut album due out next year.
        6. Californian sister act ‘Haim’ (Danielle, Alana and Este,) released their debut EP ‘Forever’ in February, featuring the tracks ‘Better Off’, ‘Forever’ and ‘Go Slow‘. Heavily influenced by 90′s R&B, the sisters cite their influences as EN Vogue & TLC. Originally part of a family band called ‘Rockinhaim’ covering classic rock songs, the girls have developed their sound into a more modern RnB folksy vibe that celebrates the simplicity of percussion and beautiful harmonies. Having received rave reviews after their SXSW performance, followed by a headline gig in the UK, the sisters have gone on to support Florence + The Machine on their UK and Ireland Tour. Their debut album, produced by James Ford (Florence + The Machine – Ceremonials, Arctic Monkeys – Suck It And See), is expected early next year.
        7. King Krule, AKA 18 year old Archy Marshall from London, released his self titled EP in November, featuring his debut track ‘The Noose of Jah City‘.  His latest single ‘Rock Bottom‘ sees Marshall produce his own instrumentals while highlighting his edgy, blues style vocals.
        8. Irish Band Kodaline, made up of Steve Garrigan (lead vocals), Mark Prendergast (Guitar & Keys), Vinny May Jr, (Drums) and Jason Boland (Bass), released their self titled EP back in September. Their track ‘All I Want’ propelled them into the spotlight, with it’s creative and heartfelt video directed by Stevie Russel, and has since gone on to reach 1 million views on Youtube. The group have recently toured with ‘We Are Augustines’ and ‘The Temper Trap’, with headline dates set for early next year.
        9. 26 year old Laura Mvula from Birmingham, grew up listening to jazz and studied classical music composition. These elements have greatly influenced Lauras style today. Her debut single ‘She‘ gained her great support, with it’s soulful, enchanting vocals and layered style production. Currently working on her debut album, with Tom Elmhurst (Amy Winehouse, Lilly Allen and Adele), Laura is one of 2 acts nominated for the 2013 Brits Critics Choice Award.
        10. Little Green Cars are a 5 piece group from Dublin and the second Irish band to make this year’s longlist. The group include Stevie Appleby (vocals, guitar), Faye O’Rourke (vocals, guitar), Donagh Seaver O’Leary (bass, vocals), Adam O’Regan (guitar, vocals) and Dylan Lynch (drums, vocals). Their debut single ‘The John Wayne‘, was released in November while their upcoming debut album, ‘Absolute Zero’, produced by Markus Dravs (Björk, Arcade Fire, Mumford and Sons) is expected early next year.
        11. Palma Violets are a South London Indie band, made up of Sam Fryer (vocals, guitar), Chilli Jesson (bass, guitar), Pete Mayhew (keyboards) and Will Doyle (drums). Their debut single ‘Best Of Friends’ was recently voted as NME’s track of the year. The group will appear in 2013’s NME Awards Tour, while their debut album is due in February.
        12. Birmingham four-piece band, ‘Peace’, aka  Harrison Koisser (vocals, guitar), Douglas Castle (guitar), Sam Koisser (bass) and Dominic Boyce (drums), released their debut EP ‘Delicious’ in September.  The EP featured the single ‘California Daze‘; a classic Indie anthem, filled with ‘Beach Boys’ style harmonies and resonating guitars. After a busy year of gigging, the group have supported the likes of Mystery Jets and Manic Street Preachers. Their debut album is expected early next year.
        13. Savages, are a 4 piece post-punk group from London (Jehnny Beth (vocals), Ayse Hassan (bass), Fay Milton (drums) and Gemma Thompson (guitar)).  Having performed on the BBC Introducing stage at this year’s Hackney Weekend, the girls are known for their dramatic and intense live shows. In May, they released their double A side featuring the tracks ‘Husbands’ and ‘Flying to Berlin’, while their live EP ‘I Am Here’ was released back in October.
        14. The Weeknd, aka 22 year old Abel Tesfaye from Toronto Canada, released his ‘House of Baloons‘ mixtape in 2011.  Tesfaye has since been nominated for a Polaris Prize, and has gone on to work with Drake on his album ‘Take Care’,  including guest vocals on ‘Crew Love‘.  The Weeknd recently appeared on ‘Later with Jools Holland‘ as well as a live session for Zane Lowe . In November, he released his album ‘Trilogy’, which contained 3 of his previous mixtapes and latest single ”Wicked Games‘.
        15. Tom Odell. 21 singer/songwriter from Sussex, has recently been nominated for the 2013 Brit’s Critics’ Choice Award. Currently signed to Lilly Allens label, Odell released his debut EP ‘Another Love‘ EP in November. Odell recently featured on ‘Later with Jools Holland‘ and has toured with the likes of  Jake Bugg and last years ‘Sound of 2012’ winner, Michael Kiwanuka. His debut album is due for release next year, while his upcoming single, ‘Can’t pretend’ will be released in  January.


Starting Monday 31st Dec, Huw Stephens will take over the Radio 1 Breakfast show as part of the ‘Specialist Takeover’, where he will announce the top 5 acts throughout the week. Be sure to check out all the nominated artists before the winner is announced on Friday January 4th.

*Results Update*


2) AlunaGeorge (Runner Up)

3) Angel Haze

4) Laura Mvula

5) Chvrches

Playlist of nominated artists:


7 thoughts on “BBC Sound of 2013 – Longlist

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