Sounds like: Joyous and saucy Latin pop from Colombia.
For fans of: Shakira, Katy B, MO
Need to know: Lao Ra might make sugar-sweet tropical pop, but underneath she’s a fearless competitor. ‘Bang Boom’ features the lyrics ‘like a shark, I’m going to eat you’, which make perfect sense when you learn that to prove her toughness at her Bogota school, she ate a live worm on the first day in front of her classmates.
What’s next: A new single is due in January and frequent releases throughout the year are being lined up.
See them live: She recently played a headline show in London and new shows are likely just around the corner.
Essential track: ‘Bang Boom’
From: Billericay, Essex
Sounds like: Funky guitar riffs are complemented by vocals that are often rapped more than sung. If Jamie T was starting out in 2016, imagine he’d sound a little like this.
For fans of: Jamie T, Skepta, Kano
Need to know: Having been tipped by Elton John and Julie Adenuga already, the Essex lads whipped up serious interest with their electrifying and dizzying festival performances over the Summer and have been picked up by Kitsune since.
What’s next: They’ve retreated into their self-described bunker to bash out some more tunes that will doubt light up summer 2017.
See them live: The boys will no doubt hit festivals hard next summer.
Essential track: ‘No Lie’
From: Chipstead, Surrey
Sounds like: Jilted, doomy and forward-thinking pop.
For fans of: Grimes, FKA Twigs, St Vincent
Need to know: Pixx aka Hannah Rogers was born in the suburbs and grew up not far from the BRIT School, where she eventually spent her formative years as a musician. Now, she’s graduated, signed to legendary label 4AD and is readying a collection of mind-melting and dizzying indie-pop.
What’s next: Her debut album is due in May and a new single will be dropped early next year
See them live: London Birthdays (February 28)
Essential track: ‘Grip’
Sounds like: Brooding ruminations on life’s less brilliant parts set to dark, howling garage-rock.
For fans of: Parquet Courts, Iceage, Merchandise
Need to know: The Peckham five-piece take the mundane and make it sound like a never-ending thrill, like when they narrate the weary life of the nine-to-fiver on ‘Saturday Drag’.
What’s next: Recent gigs have proven Yowl to be a band who seem to get better with every show so we’re anticipating a lot of touring and subsequent cult favourites status.
See them live: Watch out for new gigs to be announced in the new year.
Essential track: ‘Saturday Drag’
From: New York City
Sounds like: All the best bits of NYC’s illustrious musical history combined with a fizzing excitement and innate sense of cool. Magical, in short.
For fans of: The Velvet Underground, Public Access TV, Interpol
Need to know: Dan Lardner and Alex Niemetz met on the streets of the city aged 17 and bonded over their shared musical obsessions. Later, they formed a band, signed to Dirty Hit (The 1975, Wolf Alice) and unveiled themselves to the world as a revelatory new group capable of transforming your world in just two minutes and 30 seconds.
What’s next: They’ve already recorded their debut album, which will be unleashed next year. If it’s even half as perfect as debut single ‘Rodeo’ it should be one of the year’s finest first records.
See them live: Expect them to make their first UK appearances early next year.
Essential track: ‘Rodeo’