Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

14 acts for 2014

Read about and hear the 14 acts we reckon you should keep an eye on for 2014

Yes for 2014: NoNoNo

Fri, Dec 27, 2013, 13:15


You’ll find my piece on the acts to watch out for in 2014 from today’s Ticket here. For those of you who want to check out the acts right away, you’ll find the acts listed below together with some music from each.

Ian Ring

Hugely talented Cork producer and member of Young Wonder (“Time” below), Ian Ring has shown his smarts on new material from Daithi and some other as-yet-unreleased projects. One to definitely watch out for in the future.

Schoolboy Q

It’s time for Schoolboy Q’s close-up. The Los Angeles rapper and Black Hippy collective dude (alongside Kendrick Lamar) releases his major label debut album “Oxymoron” in February. We’re expecting fireworks from the man born Quincy Hanley, if album teasers “Banger”, “Man of the Year” and “Collard Greens” are anything to go by.

Kids of The Apocalypse

There will always be at least one act in these lists trying to stay in the shadows. In this case, Kids of The Apocalypse are the ones trying to stay mysterious and enigmatic. Tracks to date like “Empire” and “Masters of the Sun” indicate a crew very much at home pushing the envelope when it comes to widescreen electropop.


The shorthand here could be “if you like Disclosure, you’ll dig Bondax”. We’re talking another pair of kids – Adam Kaye and George Townsend – who have been producing smashing house cuts and low-slung electropop sweetness to get the connoisseurs swooning. They tour with London Grammar in 2014.

Josef Salvat

Anyone who saw him at Other Voices went home singing the Australian’s praises. We’re longtime fans of the man in the blue suit, someone who has a great ear for glitzy pop heartbreakers full of sophisticated heart and soul.


You’ve probably not realised it, but you’ve heard this Swedish trio already thanks to their hands-in-the-air pop belter “Pumpin’ Blood” being used to soundtrack TV sporting highlights in the last few months. There’s much more where that comes from too. One for fans of The Knife and Oh Land.

Bipolar Sunshine

Manchester-based Adio Marchant got a good run going in 2013 with mesmeric, enchanting tracks like “Fire” and “Rivers”, which were chockablock with early potential. The last track we heard from him, “Love More Worry Less”, had radio airplay written all over it.

George Ezra

The Bristol-based singer-songwriter with the soulful, sand-blasted, blues voice and sparse, spine-tingling, elegant songs to match has been on our radar since 2012. Now, thanks to the BBC Sound Of poll, everyone else has cottoned on to his appeals and charm.

Chloe Howl

One of the acts who really impressed us with her tunes and chutzpah at last spring’s Great Escape, Chloe Howl is a teenager on a mission. Tunes like “No Strings” were strong and bold and showed that she was capable to penning and performing bright, sassy earworms.


New York trio by way of Los Angeles, Wet received a lot of attention in and around last year’s CMJ festival. Their four track EP is one which gets better and better with every listen, a collection of hushed, minimal, tender tunes which really get under your skin.


Highlighted in On the Record elsewhere in The Ticket this week, Broods are New Zealand brother and sister Georgia and Caleb Nott who are sure to receive all the “new Lorde” noise in the months ahead. We like what we’ve heard from to far, especially the broody (sorry) “Bridge”.

The Academic

Mullingar teens making bright, radio-friendly alternative pop with plenty of hooks and bubbly tunes in the mix. Very early days but there’s a lot of potential here so expect a lot of A&R trips to the Midlands in 2014.


French producer Mie Levy was in the spotlight in 2013 thanks to his “Aleph” debut album and work for Kanye West on “Yeezus”. The Lyon native has a great ability to create intense, infectious techno-noir. Expect him to be producing tracks full of grandstanding and pomp for some years to come.


One of the big stories to watch in 2014 will be the return of Neneh Cherry to the pop fray. Her daughter Tyson McVey is also worth noting, as she makes moves with producer Shaun Savage under the PANES moniker. Expect dark, dramatic r’n’b from the pair.

Twenty One Pilots

The Columbus, Ohio duo have several things going for them: a superb live reputation, some brilliant mesmeric tunes like “Car Radio” (and a fantastic video to go with it) and a slow, steady build in the United States. Expect many over here to go nuts for their crunchy, idiosyncratic, full-bodied sound in 2014.