2011 has been a good year for music, but as we look ahead we can’t help but feel excited about the new talent that lies ahead. Week to week we’ve been sharing new artists with you through our BeatCrave Fav series, and now is our chance to predict their future. We’ve compiled a list of Top Bands To Look Out For in 2012. Some of them, we’ve been lucky enough to feature in our series; the others were just too hard to ignore. Take a look at the list of artists and bands who we believe are the bands to look out for in 2012 below!
10. Those Darlins
Background: Rooted in the South, Those Darlins started off as a trio of sassy gals. First Nikki and Jessi met at a Rock ‘n Roll Camp, and soon became roommates. Their intention was never to start a band, but once Kelley joined the mix the three started jamming together and all took off from there. After some time, the girls decided to add one gentleman to play the drums – enter Linwood Regensburg.
Sounds Like: It’s a sort of Southern rockability meets 60s pop meets grunge punk.
Songs to Check Out: Those Darlins love to talk about food, so don’t be surprised if you’ve worked up an appetite after listening to their sophomore album Screws Get Loose. For that effect listen to “Fatty Needs A Fix” and “The Whole Damn Thing.” There’s also songs about relationships like “Be Your Bro” (listen below).
What’s Next: In 2012, this Southern quartet will be touring the U.S. and Europe to support their 2011 album Screw Gets Loose. To catch a show, go to www.thosedalins.com.
Listen Now: “Be Your Bro”
Background: Songwriter, vocalist and guitarist of A House For Lions, Daniel Norman moved to Los Angeles four years ago to become a star. The road to stardom proved to be very hard, as it often is, and Norman began to write. Early in 2012, he found guitarist Mike Nissen and bassist Eric McCann. The three became A House For Lions and started playing in venues around Los Angeles. Local Natives’ producer Raymond Richards helped them with their first EP I Want Us To Be Remembered.
Sounds Like: It’s a blend of pop and Americana.
Songs to Check Out: Their debut EP, I Want Us To Be Remembered shines with tracks such as “Ease My Mind” and “Evolution Calls” – both are a blend of Americana and 60s rock.
What’s Next: They’ve got a few shows lined up, check those out at www.ahouseforlions.com
Listen Now: “Let Back”
Background: Husband and wife Patrick Riley and Alaina Moore bought a sailboat and embarked on an eight-month voyage alone the Atlantic coastline. Little did they know that that trip would turn into a music career. The duo took the inspiration from the journey and put into a Cape Dory.
Songs to Check Out: A great track by Tennis “Marathon.”
What’s Next: Tennis recently announced that they will release their sophomore album Young and Old on Valentines Day in 2012. Their new single “Origins” was out December 6th, and was produced by The Black Keys producer Patrick Carney.
Listen Now: “Take Me Somewhere”
Background: Much of Rubblebucket met at an art opening in Burlington, VT in 2007. The large group is led by the vocals and saxophone of Kalmia Traver and Alex Toth‘s energetic trumpet. Together they brought together an eight-piece band with the hopes of creating pop-friendly music.
Sounds Like: With as many as ten people on stage, Rubblebucket will reminds you Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, but their sound is powered by a dance pop aesthetic.
Songs to Check Out: Rubblebucket’s music is very friendly, flooded with instruments and harmony. “Silly Fathers” is easily the most catchy tune in their new album Omega La La.
What’s Next: They are touring the U.S. to support their latest album. To catch a show go to www.rubblebucket.com
Listen Now: “Silly Fathers”
6. The Staves
Background: The Staves are formed by a band of sisters Emily, Jessica and Camilla for Watford, England. A couple of years ago they decided to get serious and write some songs, then they started playing shows.
Songs to Check Out: Their craft is something to admire. You’ll be blown away by the gentle sounds of their music. Listen to their new song “Mexico.”
What’s Next: The Staves released their new EP, Mexico on December 12, and will be supporting it with a U.S. tour in 2012.
Listen Now: “Mexico”
Background: Austra is the work of 26-year-old Toronto native Katie Stelmanis. She started taking music lessons at the tender age of 10. She was trained by the Canadian Children’s Opera and would spend hours and hours practicing. From 2005 through 2008, she played with a band called Galaxy. In 2009, she released a solo album titled Join Us. She decided to turn her solo act into a trio with Maya Postepski on drums and Dorian Wolf on bass, and called it Austra.
Songs to Check Out: There’s something confusing about Austra’s sound. For one, Katie’s voice is slow and haunting, but the beats behind her voice are resonant of a day at the beach. Listen to “Lose It” and “Energy” (below).
What’s Next: The trio is currently on tour, supporting their debut album Feel It Break, which was released earlier this year.
Listen Now: “Energy”
Background: Grouplove has a very interesting history, set in Greece. A few years ago keyboardist Hannah Hooper and singer/guitarist Christian Zucconi left to Europe. During their traveling, the duo met their future drummer Ryan Rabin, bassist Andrew Wessen, and guitarist Sean Gadd. All of them regrouped in Los Angeles and started playing with instruments. Soon they got a manager and started booking shows. Now they are part of an even bigger machine, CAA. Their debut album Never Trust a Happy Song was released in September.
Sounds Like: As NME put it, Grouplove is a cross between “National Lampoon’s European vacation, Summer Lovers and your favorite Yankee mall rat flick from the John Major years.”
Songs to Check Out: If you’re a KROQ listener, you’ve definitely heard Grouplove’s “Colours.” It’s an amazing track that will make you infatuated.
What’s Next: After finishing their tour in Australia, Grouplove will play shows in Europe and the United States.
Listen Now: “Colours”
Background: Keaton Henson never intended for his music to be heard by anyone. He’s from the suburbs of London and works as an illustrator and visual artist. He’s also a published poet. What started off as a gift for his best friend, became Henson’s debut album. Alone with no manager or label, he sold over 4000 copies.
Songs to Check Out: His tracks, “You Don’t Know How Lucky You Are” caught the ear of many.
What’s Next: Henson is partnering with ATC and Motive Sounds for his sophomore album Dear… which will released in February of 2012.
Listen Now: “You Don’t Know How Lucky You Are”
Background: Hailing from New Zealand, Kimbra has been making music for a long time. She’s only 21-years-old but she’s been playing live shows since she was a teenager. Her debut record Vows was released earlier this year, a project that took Kimbra four years to make.
Songs to Check Out: Kimbra’s songs tell a story. She’s got an amazing imagination and her music videos are full of creativity. Listen to “Settle Down” and “Cameo Lover.”
What’s Next: This year, Kimbra won the New Zealand Critics’ Choice award. She recently signed an international deal with Warner Bros. Records. America has yet to discover this talented gem.
Listen Now: “Settle Down”
1. Lana Del Rey
Background: Born Elizabeth Grant, Lana Del Rey is the daughter of millionaire domain-inventor Rob Grant. She grew up in New York, singing in choirs. Her music career started years before her “Video Games” YouTube video went viral. In 2010, she released an Kill Kill, an EP, under a different stage name Lizzy Grant. When that didn’t work, Del Rey got help from her father and created a new imagine.
Sounds Like: She’s been described as the ‘gangsta Nancy Sinatra.’
Songs to Check Out: “Video Games” became a sensation on YouTube. The music video is a series of vintage vignettes with Lana Del Rey’s deep voice poured over. It’s definitely worth a listen, especially since it’s the song that put this pop singer on the map. Also check out her new single “Born to Die” from her debut album.
What’s Next: Lana Del Rey is going to be the next big thing. Her debut album, Born to Die is set to come out January 31st. Del Rey will be promoting her album two weeks early (January 14) on none other than “Saturday Night Live.”
Listen Now: “Video Games”
What band or act do you think belongs up here?