December’s a funny month for people who write about new music, mainly because there’s not too much of it about. Release schedules are bare, with the exception of big name acts cashing in with Greatest Hits or maybe the odd novelty record, and there aren’t so many gigs because of the bad weather and clashes with Christmas parties, so people like me sit at home reflecting on the past year and pontificating about the year ahead.
Towards the end of last year Robin from Breaking More Waves got in touch with us and 48 other blogs to continue what Breaking More Waves and the Von Pip Musical had started in 2012. The Blog Sound of 2013 poll is a bit of an alternative to the BBC’s own Sound of 2013 – not meant as a criticism of what the BBC are doing, just a different viewpoint. Interestingly, last year’s Mercury Prize winners Alt-J featured on the Blog Sound of 2012 poll, but we’re on BBC’s Sound of 2012.
We were asked to nominate five artists that represented the best in emerging music. At first glance it sounded nice and easy, but was it really that simple? Should I just be nominating bands from Brighton? Most of the other blogs involved weren’t so geographical. And should I be nominating my favourite bands, or the ones who were doing best at “emerging”? And what does emerging really mean anyway?
In the end, I nominated two Brighton bands, one band who are half Brighton / half London, and two bands with no links to Brighton. Sadly none of my nominations made it to the final longlist, but Curxes did appear giving a bit of local representation. Subsequently one of the acts I nominated – Anna Meredith – got awarded Drowned in Sound’s single of the year, which gave me a bit of reassurance that I don’t have cloth ears thankfully.
The longlist announced in December comprised of AlunaGeorge, Curxes, Chvrches, Daughter, Haim, Laura Mvula, MØ, Palma Violets, Pins, Randolph’s Leap, Rhye, Savages, Seasfire, The Neighbourhood, Tom Odell. Seven of these ended up on the BBC’s Sound of 2013 list. This morning, the winner of the crown of Blog Sound of 2013, was announced, alongside the the final top five :
If you want to get your ears around these bands – which doesn’t seem like such a bad idea considering these are the acts which have been voted for by people passionate enough about music to devote their spare time to writing about them – then Breaking More Waves have put together a handy Soundcloud playlist :