We are very pleased to announce the 120 acts who make up the longlist for our 2014 Emerging Talent Competition. These acts were all chosen by our judging panel, made up of the UK’s finest online music writers. We’d like to say a massive thank you to the many thousands of acts who entered the contest, and the judges for helping to whittle them down to these 120 acts.
Each of the bloggers has chosen their favourite three acts. They’re listed below. You can – and really should! – listen to a playlist of the acts here (apart from a couple who chose to enter with private SoundCloud links).
These acts will be narrowed down to a shortlist of just 8 acts who will compete at April’s live finals for a slot on one of the main stages at this year’s Festival.
But, for now, they can all bask in the glory of making it this far!
2 U I Bestow
1. Connor Linnie
"Wonderful guitar driven folk"
2. Zoe Schwarz Blue Commotion
"This track could make a bond movie soundtrack"
3. Ailie Blunnie
"Love song that has some beautifuly descriptive lyrics"
1. Arthur Rigby & the Baskervylles
"Lush orchestration and multi-layered vocals to tell a tale of loneliness and heartbreak"
2. Alev Lenz
"Her swooping vocals carry a beautiful melody of heartbreak and dreams across softly twinkling keys"
3. George Boomsma
"A simple slice of folk which showcases swoonsome vocals from North Yorkshire’s George Boomsma"
1. Ella On The Run
"Shimmering, effortless dark pop with whooshes and drum machines all over the shop"
"Delightfully wonky guitars open up a well-measured indie racket that’s way ahead of what most boys with guitars are doing these days"
3. Ben Cipolla
"One of the most interesting voices I’ve heard in a long time"
1. Benin City
"They sound like London’s equivalent of TV On The Radio, which is saying a lot."
"Brolin’s sound feels very contemporary, melding his R&B sound with an exposed male sensitivity and indie production"
3. Aztec Doll
"Aztec Doll have a seriously deep sound – inky dark pop-punk jams"
Breaking More waves
1. Gibson Bull
"An acoustic based singer songwriter with sweet and gentle melodies, but on the song Skin & Bones he adds a modern twist by adding soft beats"
2. Cosmo Sheldrake
"Quite simply the most absurdly innovative and eccentric artist
3. Wednesday’s Wolves
"Graceful female harmonies that float into the ears like a tender kiss"
Brixton via Anywhere
"The inventiveness isn’t at the expense of commercial potential, as this is warm, hum-able music"
"Dark electro-gothy outfit. They’d They’d make people’s night on a late-night stage."
3. Amy Dearlove
Cats band crushes
"Capturing delayed guitars, clever vocals layered with rhythms and syncopated electronics up the tempo to an uplighting end product"
2. Crooked Hands
"Stunning harmonies and rewarding songwriting showcase quiet detail that triumphs into cascading joy."
3. Darktown Jubilee
"Polished sounds flavoured with a distinctly UK feel"
"Bloom are as laid back as they are urgent. Ready To Run might begin patient and stylish but it climaxes in a release of thrashing guitars"
2. Hero Fisher
"Murky, dark and compelling"
"Upbeat, sharp and most certainly festival friendly"
Consequence of Sound
1. Big Tent & The Gypsy Lantern
"Unexpected twists and turns in melody and tempo are bridged by sharp harmonies"
2. Echo Raptors
"Echo Raptors delivers a clean, positive sound that bridges that of the great guitar bands of early West Coast and classic 90s Britpop yet with a fresh, contemporary spin"
3. Eyes For Gertrude
"Reaches determinedly for higher ground, illuminated by delicious vocal flourishes and rousing bluegrass accompaniment"
Crack in the Road
"Bold, energetic and really well written"
"If we (fingers crossed) get sun at Glastonbury this year, I can’t imagine many better songs to go crazy to."
3. GO WOLF
"Perfectly pop, I’m a sucker for this sound and these guys nail it."
1. Hot Feet
"Hot Feet’s languid folk stylings feel as effortless as they do warming"
2. Umbrella Assassins
"Umbrella Assassins are gnarling, heavy, guitar-laden fuzz-rockers with a punk-rock sensibility"
3. TEEM TEEM TEEM TEEM
"Teem Teem Teem Teem’s melodic alt rock isn’t far removed from established bands like Yuck and Dinsoaur Jr… A perfect festival draw for a hot afternoon."
Devil has the best tuna
1. Lili Dulcie
"Sounds like Suzanne Vega at her mournful best"
2. Johnny Parry chamber Orchestra
"Sounds like Sufjan Stevens and Nick Cave joining forces with a host of angels to perform the soundtrack to the life of Edgar Allen Poe"
3. Lara Smiles
"London singer Lara has dropped a pop bomb on the world"
Don’t Watch Me Dancing
1. Liza Flume
"A strange, pretty and entrancing take on the more traditional singer-songwriter model"
"Immersive, ambient music with lovely, weird electronic harmonies in the vocals"
3. London Afrobeat Collective
"Delightful, uplifting Afrobeat that packs a punch with soulful vocals and funky guitar grooves"
Dots and dashes
1. Nadine Carina
"Liverpool-based, but Swiss-born and bred songstress with a keen ear for the eccentric"
"A beyond versatile singer-songwriter with the voice of a precocious Sarah McLachlan"
3. Nick Edward Harris
"Redolent of a more raggedy, musically exploratory Nick Mulvey"
Drowned in Sound
1. OLD MAN DIODE
"Old Man Diode’s innovative palette transgresses endless boundaries."
2. PATCHWORK NATIVES
"Fusing influences as far and wide as abstract jazz, post-rock and traditional Japanese math time signatures they’re one of the most unique outfits treading the boards at the minute"
3. PANDR EYEZ
"A richly textured variant of soulful R&B that works just as well live as in the recording room"
1. Louis Barabbas
"Together with his band, The Bedlam Six, the charismatic Louis Barabbas delivers an all-consuming live spectacle."
2. Fickle Friends
"The Brighton quintet burst with an infectious energy, suitably displayed on standout track ‘Swim’."
3. Lily & Meg
"The duo’s charming folk offerings are likely to warm the heart of any audience."
Fear of Fiction
"Euphoric and orchestral, Halves create a reverb drenched soundscapes somewhere between the lofi charm of Youth Lagoon and Broken Social Scene"
2. Tessera Skies
"Piano led pop comes in many forms, but none more sincere than Tessera Skies"
3. The Mono LPs
"With vocals overflowing with Alex Turner-esque swagger, The Mono LPs combine a unique variety of influences, from floor stomping country to garage punk"
Flying with Anna
1. Fifi Rong
"Sublime vocals over interesting Massive Attack influenced beats."
2. Corey Fox-Fardell
"Great mix of acoustic guitar and electronic sounds. Love when the beat drops on the chorus."
"Great soul voice from a young artist."
Gold Flake Paint
"Gorgeous, intricate guitar loops and an over-bearing sense of warmth that constantly radiates."
2. Grandfather Birds
"Impassioned indie rock; all quiet tension set against big hooks."
"Pretty damn infectious pop music with an understated electronic edge."
1. Loved Ones
"A very immediate track with a catchy, albeit melancholic, chorus that will get stuck in your head"
"The male / female duet that kicks in after about a minute is superb"
"Atmospheric and dynamic, layers upon layers build throughout as the track goes on to reach a really satisfying crescendo"
It’s All Indie
1. The New Union
"Their sound is reminiscent of early Bloc Party and new Maccabees. "Now" is easily the best track I’ve heard this year!"
2. The Old Silent
"With gorgeous harmonies and big guitars they remind me of Blur crossed with Crowded House."
3. The Ratells
"With big and bold choruses and lovely guitar tones they’re certainly an exciting prospect!"
Judges Utd 1
1= The Little Unsaid
"Singular, minimal acoustic mastery openly capable of inflicting a fully maximised emotive feel"
1= Only Girl
""Bittersweet" swoons around your heart with sparse, early 90′s r&b grooves and a ghostly sweet vocal"
1= The Merrylees
"A cosmic and nostalgic sound full of enjoyable guitar chops, trumpet swoons and melody."
Judges Utd 2
1= Empress Nights
"Otherworldly, haunting soundscapes with passionate vocals against a backdrop of shimmering guitars and soft, restrained piano twinkles, the result is as bold as it is beautiful."
1= The Ragamuffins
"Purveyors of brassy chest-thumping and organ swirling mayhem"
"Jess Bartlet’s deadpan vocal brims with typically British reserve"
Just Music That I Like
1. Cadbury Sisters
"The trio blend their vocals around exquisite fingerplucked acoustic melodies and the result is simply beautiful."
"Sexy-smooth electro-pop rhythms which stand out thanks to a super slick melody and a deviliously gorgeous 90′s inspired soul vocal"
3. Georgia and the Dales
"Traditional folk harmonies set amongst rich, quick-paced instrumentation"
1. The Wax Collection
"Great melodies – especially the interplay between the two guitarists"
2. Deep Throat
"The strength of all their voices in harmony is great. Very raw energy"
3. Danny Toeman
"Great voice, good range, very tight backing tracks & a charismatic stage presence."
1. Izzy Bizu
"Izzy’s voice is just insane. It’s the sort of voice that could probably work in any context, but I like how she avoided going with a completely ‘vintage’ or retro feel, which would have been easy to do, instead choosing to make a song that feels fresh"
2. Jamie Jooste
"The incredibly catchy False Alarm constantly walks that fine line between showing strength and vulnerability, which is sort of the key to all amazing pop songs"
"A really upbeat, carefree song with a catchy melody"
1. Wild Swim
"Wild Swim are a five piece from Oxford who make slow, dark, hypnotic and ethereal pop songs"
2. La Petite Mort
"La Petite Mort blend a hybrid of shoegaze, psychedelia, new wave, and pop into something which somehow comes out sounding fresh, aligned and vibrant"
3. Will Samson
"Fragile, heartfelt vocals wrapped around soft ambient electronic beats, glitches, hisses, and whatever else"
Music like Dirt
"Captivating skills on the piano"
2. Rebecca Vaughan
"Smokey but lovely voice, accomplished guitar playing and crucially a couple of very catchy tune"
"Reid’s warm electronic sounds would have the Glastonbury crowds nodding their heads and waving their glow sticks in equal measure"
1. Letters to Fiesta
"This Manchester-based four piece has a stadium-sized sound with epic indie rock oozing out of every pore… her voice is stunning"
2. Dana Immanuel
"Stellar banjo player Dana Immanuel has an incredible voice that acts as a welcome call to arms for bluegrass and folk music fans everywhere"
3. DB Cohen
"Combines a mix of heartfelt acoustic guitar numbers and the Two Tone-esque bombast of a full brass section"
"Thoroughly zeitgeist-capturing modern electronic R&B music."
2. July Child
"Subtle blend of soul and electronic genres with pleasing vocal."
3. RIME SUSPEX
"Nice mix of modern pop, rap and acoustic instruments."
"In a world where pop – in places – has become a bit of a complicated mess, Ronika offers something brilliant in its simplicity"
2. Muncie Girls
"Like all great pop-punk, the band are indebted to the filth and the fury of the 1970s and the sugarry pop of the 1980s, while making both influences completely their own"
3. Run Tiger Run
"A perfect example of why jittery, edge-of-your-seat guitars and earnest vocals are always going to be winner"
Play Pause Rewind
"If these lads released an album tomorrow I would buy it for sure."
2. Ryan Vail
"Derry electronic whizz kid Ryan Vail really jumped off the page as a perfect festival artist"
3. Ronan Macmanus
"Llyrically very astute and cutting, he delivers songs from the heart and you believe him when he delivers them"
Real horrorshow tunes
1. Sula Bay
"Roving experimentalism tempered by the soulful and downright ethereal touches that this young songwriter and producer brings to the fore"
2. Shannon Wardrop
"Fiery angst folk from Maidenhead that, taking cues from the likes of Sharon Van Etten, delights and galvanises in equal measure"
"Well constructed quirky left of centre pop music from this Dublin trio"
1. Soldier On
"There is a punky rawness to them but crafted with a tidy band unison, leading to an edgy, banterous sound."
2. Sons of Caliber
"Harmonies in this song just had me reaching for that pint of cider and getting comfy in a field for a big afternoon of music"
3. Sebastian Blake
"Music with natural funk and blues, this has summer passion written all over it"
The House of Coxhead
1. Jamie Graham
"Fantastic voice and great live… destined for big things"
2. Jack Durtnall
"Refreshing lyrics and a very cool tone to his voice."
"There aren’t enough House bands out there, so it’s nice to see these guys doing something different. And they have a didgeridoo."
The Line of Best Fit
"London trio FURS embody everything an exciting pop band should"
"Waltzer have something of Smashing Pumpkins about them in that balance between anthemic pop hooks and bitterness"
3. The Blackwhite
"The Blackwhite’s subtle folk sensibilities get underneath your skin immediately with their fragile intimacy but do nothing to prepare you for the pop rush that invariably follows"
1. Sweet Benfica
"A very sweet and tender track"
2. Stevie-Jo Dooley
"Really interesting, especially her voice and vocal approach"
3. Sophia Nicole
"Her voice reminds me of Alessi’s Ark – which is never a bad thing"
The White Noise
1. House of Hats
"Hearty folk grass roots that’s all-round great for the soul, and for fans of The Lumineers and The Civil Wars"
"Takes you on a wondrous adventure; accelerated instrumentally with surprises of string orchestral elements yet still retaining its Indie Folk tale similarly to Fleet Foxes"
"The chorus throws you into a nostalgic wall of Seattle grunge that will have you wall-punching and head-banging for days"
1. The Fauns
"A gorgeously expansive piece of shoegaze"
2. The Black Tambourines
"The Black Tambourines hone in on a certain style 1960s surf motif which I can’t quite put my finger on, and reinvent it with expertise"
3. The Darlingtons
"A vast, echoing sort of alternative rock music"
When you awake
1. Nuala Honan
"An absolutely stunning voice that should be heard. "
"An interesting layered arrangement and harmonies"
3. Two For Joy
"Catchy, stripped back rock and roll."