Introducing Our MTV Brand New For 2018 Shortlist…
We’ve picked out the ten artists we think are set for big things over the next 12 months…
2017 has been an incredible year for new music and we reckon 2018 is going to top it. There’s never been so much promise in the industry and today we’re SO excited to reveal our MTV Brand New For 2018 nominees who we think you should keep an eye on over the next year.
Selected by MTV officials, key music influencers and industry representatives, these acts join the MTV Brand New school of fame which features the likes of Adele, Justin Bieber, Anne-Marie, Florence + The Machine, AJ Tracey, Krept & Konan, Years & Years and more.
In January you’ll decide our winner with a public vote, but for now get to know our 10 acts here...
Who?: Brainchild of brothers Ewan and Callum, the pair grew up on a separate diet of hip hop and R&B before the film Scott Pilgrim vs The World convinced them they were destined to start a band. Now a five piece and despite their name, this indie-funk, hip-rock group are determined to lift your spirits with their conversational lyrics and exuberant live shows.
Listen To: ‘Wages’, ‘Living Alone’, ‘Are You High?’
Fun Fact: Their first ever gig involved a home-made glitter cannon fashioned from a leaf blower!
They say: “We've pretty much just made videos ourselves with friends, we never wanted to do the moody cool band thing so we'd just come up with stupid ideas for videos and stuff we thought was funny. We’re surprised that MTV even show them, let alone put us in their Brand New Top 10 for 2018. Thanks MTV”
Who?: Despite his Top 20 smash with Camelphat, ‘Cola’, it would be lazy to label Elderbrook as just an electronic artist. A triple threat of singer-songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist, Alexander Kotz’s one-man live show setup has left him the talk of the town both sides of the Atlantic so it’s no wonder Gorgon City invited him on the road with them.
Listen To: ‘Cola’, ‘Talking’, ‘Closer’.
Fun Fact: Kotz has been known to sample the sound of breaking reading glasses and crackling ice in coffee in his productions.
He says: “Really honoured to be picked for MTV's Brand New. I grew up watching MTV so it’s a big honour to be included in this.”
Who?: Describing her sound as “Quentin Tarantino music,” Canadian-born Jessie Reyez’s genreless music is cathartic, rebellious and vulnerable all at once. Her ‘Figures’ track catapulted her into the spotlight and soon after ‘Gatekeeper’ called out her experience of music industry sexism, garnering widespread acclaim. Unafraid to be herself, 2018 is hers for the taking.
Listen To: ‘Shutter Island’, ‘Gatekeeper’, ‘Figures’.
Fun Fact: Her emotional performance in her 'Figures' video was so raw they decided to keep it as one full take.
Who?: One of the leading names in the UK’s firing Afrobashment scene, Lotto Boyzz are the hottest thing in Birmingham right now. With millions of YouTube views notched up in just a few months, Ash and Lucas are well worth keeping your eye on this year.
Listen To: ‘No Don’, ‘Birmingham (Anthem)’, ‘FaceTime Me’.
Fun Fact: The Lotto in their name stands for ‘Last Of The True Ones’.
They say: “Knowing that such a large and influential platform like MTV has acknowledged our sound is extremely humbling. The team at Lotto Boyzz Records are very grateful for the opportunity that MTV have provided us with, especially considering that we have been placed alongside other great talents in the category. Many Thanks. Love Lotto”
Who?: Music runs through the veins of Mabel McVey, daughter of producer Cameron McVey (Massive Attack, Sugababes) and singer Neneh Cherry. Influenced by the golden age of 00s R&B, Mabel, is fast-becoming one of the UK’s breakout pop stars. With ‘Finders Keepers’ already at Top 10 hit, expect big things for her in 2018.
Listen To: ‘Finders Keepers’, ‘Bedroom’, ‘Begging’.
Fun Fact: Her brother is Marlon Roudette.
She says: "I'm so excited to be in the top ten for MTVs Brand New for 2018! There's always such an amazing list of nominees and to be a part of it this year is a dream come true”!
Who?: Shooting to notoriety last year with his viral single ‘Addison Lee’, Hackney’s Not3s is just getting started. Nominated for two MOBO awards this year, Not3s’ music sits somewhere between dancehall, rap and R&B and his latest EP attracted features from Tinie Tempah, Shakka and MoStack. Take not3.
Listen To: ‘My Lover’, ‘Addison Lee’, ‘Aladdin’.
He says: “Honoured to have been picked for MTV Brand New. It's been an amazing year in, so this means a lot!”
Fun Fact: Not3s has a fan in famed documentary maker Louis Theroux who once tweeted out the lyrics to ‘Addison Lee’!
Who?: Meet Heather, Ciara, Hugo and Charlie, your Manchester-hailing indie-pop saviours. Mentored by The 1975’s Matt Healy (he co-produced their first two singles ‘There’s A Honey’ and ‘Television Romance’ also directing the video for the latter), and backed by Dirty Hit, the team behind Wolf Alice, The Japanese House), we’ve got a good feeling about this foursome.
Listen To: ‘Television Romance’, ‘There’s A Honey’.
Fun Fact: The set for their 'Television Romance' was shot in a 92-year-old woman's flat, with all her decorations and belongings!
They say: “We're really happy to be part of MTV Brand New 2018. We’re excited about everything we have coming up next year and it’s great to have MTV’s support. Thank you!”
Who?: The term ‘pop sensation’ gets used a lot but it’s none more fitting than to use it to describe Norwegian newcomer Sigrid. After a writing session in which she was downtrodden by a group of men, she wrote ‘Don’t Kill My Vibe’ which became a youth anthem and streamed into the tens of millions. We’re so excited to hear what she brings in 2018.
Listen To: ‘Don’t Kill My Vibe’, ‘Plot Twist’, ‘Strangers’.
Fun Fact: The FIRST song she ever wrote, 'Sun', led to phone calls and managers scrambling to get face time with the rising star.
She says: “Thank you for choosing me! It’s such an honour.”
Who?: Tom Walker may count chef and party photo booth attendant among the jobs on his CV but we’re so glad he stuck with singing and song writing. Glasgow born and Manchester raised, Tom has producers including Naughty Boy and Steve Mac (Ed Sheeran’s ‘Shape Of You’) behind him which spells exciting things for his debut album and the year ahead.
Listen To: ‘Leave A Light On’, ‘Heartland’, ‘Fly Away With Me’.
Fun Fact: Tom is a self-taught drummer, guitarist, pianist and bass player
He says: “Absolutely buzzing that I’ve been chosen by MTV and from the bottom of my heart I’m so thankful. Past artists have gone on to have unbelievable careers so I’m blown away that MTV think I’m up there with people like Anne-Marie and AJ Tracey!”
Who?: In just two years, Yxng Bane has taken the UK rap and grime world by storm. Signed to Disturbing London he’s in good company with Tinie Tempah, Wizkid, Yungen and more plus his remix of ‘Shape Of You’ went so viral Ed Sheeran decided to release it as an official remix!
Listen To: ‘Rihanna’, ‘Froze’, ‘Bestie’.
Fun Fact: 'Fine Wine', his track with Kojo Funds, took the pair just 15 minutes to create.
He says: "It's an absolute pleasure to be recognised as one of MTV's Brand New 2018 acts. I'm so excited to be on this year’s list because it's another reminder that people want to hear more music from me! I think with previous artists like James Bay, Ray Blk and Jack Garrett being recognised I must be doing something right to be on the list for 2018. Thank you so much for all the support MTV!"
Last year AJ Tracey was crowned as MTV Brand New 2017 champion. The grime MC from West London started out his career on pirate radio stations like many artists before him, but really came to attention when he linked up with South London MC Dave, even earning himself a shout out from Drake. Since winning MTV Brand New 2017, the artist has released a new album called ‘Secure The Bag’ with one of his songs even featuring Craig David.
AJ Tracey said: “I can’t thank MTV and my fans enough for crowning me the MTV Brand New 2017 winner. My fans always ride for me and support me and they really came through for me this time. I’ve gained so much from the whole experience and it feels good to know I’ve always got MTV backing me as they influenced me so much growing up. The success I’ve had since winning is unbelievable and I can’t wait to see who wins it this year!”
Get involved with Brand New For 2018 using the hashtag #MTVBrandNew.