Is there a hack to restart 2018 while I'm reinstalling the previous version of Snapchat (because honestly, this is the worst technological update since Apple replaced their headphone jacks)? Despite this being a monumentally terrible year thus far, there are fantastic things happening in the music industry. And while I support most of these bands by seeing their shows and buying vinyls, you can start by showing them some love on Spotify. If you aren't using Spotify, we can't be friends, but thank you for reading my blog. I think iTunes is still a thing, if you want to go that route? Let me know in the comments.
I've compiled my top three artists for 2018, and I'm stoked to see these acts live. Before we start, here are my qualifications. The artists must:
- be touring in 2018
- have a 2018 album release
- not be widely played on the radio
Why: Riah sings for the Christian band Mosaic and is married to the drummer in Lany, another one of my favorite lesser-known bands. Not to be defined by association, she's a fantastic vocalist with a 90s vibe that's not overdone or annoying -- She's basically the millennial's dream Spotify artist.
The Sound: Though she doesn't have a full album, several singles have been released this year that offer familiarly fresh beats that transition well into the secular music world. She's definitely a songwriter first, but I think we will see some intriguing music as she grows artistically.
My Pick: Lie -- just listen. I need not explain.
Why: Everyone around me has been listening to this band by association -- Flor is playing in my house, in my office, in the car, blared with the windows down. It's CREATIVE music that fits every mood. I could see them touring with Vance Joy or Paramore with their ability to transcend genre, and I predict they'll be garnering a lot more attention this year.
The Sound: If Halsey was an indie boy band... Flor is indie pop without being overproduced and has a contagious happiness that I've only experienced with one other band (see Lewis Del Mar). Flor is interesting in lyric and hooky in sound -- what more could you want?
My Pick: Spoiled, which has the sickest instrumental halfway through the song. I'm also embarrassingly obsessed with their cover of Post Malone here.
Why: I admit I was only familiar with a few songs randomly added to my Spotify playlists until I clicked on EDEN's artist profile late in 2017. After I listened to his entire discography, there is no contest -- give him 2018 artist of the year. Vertigo (2018) has nostalgia like The Neighborhood and awe inspiring riffs reminiscent of The 1975 instrumental Matt Healey performs live. In other words, it's perfection I didn't know we needed. But we do -- we really do.
The Sound: GAHHHHHHHHHHHHH. EDEN is moody, he's refreshing, he's original. I'm utterly impressed and hooked on everything he's put out to date. It's dark enough to satisfy the emo-music lover inside of me, especially since Fall Out Boy's new album fell flat (in my opinion). It also contains the secret sauce -- enough cursing to evoke emotion without sounding unnecessary or vulgar. (Should I write a blog on this? I really think this sauce is real and should be acknowledged.)
My Pick: Take Care, which has the greatest buildup around the 3 minute mark with the most mesmerizing falsetto. Take care, you'll be hooked.
I smashed my phone, but honestly I feel relieved
You can't reach me, now I can exhale on my own
PS -- I'm open to being endorsed by Spotify -- call me.