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I'm from the UK, and a lot of the time I can get really sick of English music, there I said it. These artists have become some of my favourites over the past year, and I think they all have exciting things to come in 2019.
Christine and The Queens
Not only has she taught me more French than I ever learnt in school, she has also inspired me a lot in terms of image and not conforming to norms. Her fashion style is a huge inspiration of mine and if I could pull off that hair let me tell you, I would. A lot of her songs are really chilled but also the kind that make you want to dance as well. The perfect mix. She has performed a few times on some of the late night music shows we have in the UK, and I always fall in love with her performances. The fact that she incorporates dances into them and makes them a full performance over just standing and singing is a real talent. I would be so out of breath and probably forget the routine.
Favourite songs: Tilted/Christine, Five Dollars, Girlfriend.
I only recently got into ASTRO after falling down the rabbit hole that is the K-pop industry. Honestly, once you go there, there's no going back. It is crazy how multi-talented and clear-skinned this industry is. ASTRO is another one of the countless boy groups that train for years in singing and dancing in order to 'debut' in the industry. I came across their stuff through YouTube recommendations, and as soon as I started listening I thought 'Oh god, do I really enjoy this bubblegum pop? Am I really that person now?' Hell yeah I am. In my opinion, the Korean pop industry is the best pop industry out there. Despite it's controversies, it makes good, wholesome music (mostly). A lot of, for example, the American pop industry can be filled with substance-less, repetitive songs without a meaning or message. In our day and age, the music industry is so influential, and artists using it to promote positivity is, frankly, right up my street. In short, ASTRO produce the most harmless pop music ever. It promotes positive attitudes and acknowledges that it is okay not to be okay. It is pure feel good tunes, with the occasional ballad-y love song thrown in for good measure. And let's not act like it doesn't help that they are all pretty damn good looking too.
Favourite songs: Dreams Come True, Fireworks, Innocent Love (풋사랑), All Night (new)
Yes I am one of those people that have been sucked in by BTS's catchy bops and cute faces. I am guilty. But this band is honestly so much more than that. 2018 was a crazy year for them as they made waves not only in Asia, but across the globe as well, particularly in the USA. Honestly, after watching their speech at the UN summit I knew that these guys were genuinely good people, and not just pretty pop faces. They do so much for fans and really treat them like they're a part of them, which of course they are. And honestly, no matter what type of music you're into, I think they have something for everyone. I never even knew I was into rap as much as I am till I started listening to them. I'm excited to see what they do next and can't wait for more people to be shook and blown away by what they are achieving and offering to the music industry.
Favourite songs: Euphoria, Trivia 轉 : Seesaw, Fake Love, Trivia 承 : Love
If anyone ever mentions 'girl boss', this is always the first woman that comes to my mind. Not a Kardasian, this woman right here. I first heard about her when she appeared in the BBC documentary Journey in the Danger Zone: Iraq. Here, she spoke about the on-going conflict between Kurdistan and Iraq, and how she uses her music to promote independence and power to her people. I love her style and how she is using her music for good, also battling the terrorist group ISIS not with weapons, but music, in the hope of bringing people together and showing forces like this that love will not be stamped out. It is artists like this that people need to be more aware of and support, because people like her are the ones putting themselves out there to make great differences in our world through their creativity and passion.
Favourite songs: Guns and Roses, Revolution
I have been a fan of this woman for a while now, and I just love everything about her. Her style, her writing, her energy, her personality. She is setting a good example for the youth of today, and being herself in the process. I was not familiar with any Norwegian singers before I came across her, and despite most of her songs being in English, it made me more interested in the country and it's culture. I heard 'Strangers' first and loved every second, it became the song of my summer and I still think it's an absolute bop. It was when I heard "I Don't Want To Know" that I found I could relate to her more than I thought originally. The song really resonated within me as it was as though it was perfectly describing my situation with someone at that time. The song is beautifully written, and I highly recommend listening to it if you are currently missing someone you shouldn't. I got the chance to see her this summer and she was incredible. To stand up on stage by yourself at 22 and give a crowd so much energy, enthusiasm and happiness to feed off of really shows how talented she is. Also, GIRLS UP!
Favourite songs: Don't Kill My Vibe, Strangers, I Don't Want To Know
Can you tell I have been having a thing for K-pop recently? If you're into K-pop but also love your guitar songs, then this is a band I would highly recommend. Back in the day, I was one of those people who was SO into bands that would play their own instruments, and 15 year old me is devastated that I didn't know about this band back then. My guitar-music-loving heart has been filled by this band as they lay down the traditional styles of a guitar band, but make it modern and electric. I'm so happy that bands like this are still doing well and making their way into the modern music scene. Considering they are a part of the K-pop industry, I love that they are sticking with their style and making themselves unique. They are doing so well, in fact, they recently did a show in London, which I was not aware of, till last minute. Gutted.
Favourite songs: Days Gone By (행복했던 날들이었다), I Smile (반드시 웃는다), Stop The Rain
I think the first time I listened to this band was in 2015 when I found 1901 on something like 8tracks (double points if you remember that). I immediately loved their sound as it reminded me a lot of my favourite band, The 1975. It had that same electric-pop sound mixed with amazing guitar riffs and keyboard. It was a dream for me. Their whole vibe is that classic of feeling vintage but also feeling very modern. Most of their songs are in English, but their influences and culture still interests me and makes me think more when listening to their music. If you are into indie-pop, this is definitely a band for you, even though I can almost guarantee that you will have heard one of their songs before.
Favourite songs: If I Ever Feel Better, J-Boy, 1901, Lisztomania