An advent calendar of best new bands of 2018
24 days, 24 great songs by Milly Whyles – our, now 15 year old writer! (happy birthday Milly). A great list of some of the many young bands who have made 2018 one of the great breakthrough years for new music.
Merry Christmas! I put together this list of songs as a sort of advent calendar for the countdown to Christmas, so I hope you like what I’ve chosen:
1~ Estrons – Glasgow Kisses
Really catchy and cool female fronted passionate and nostalgic punk at its best -full of shoutable and creative lyrics and a repeated spoken line that’s pretty much guaranteed to get stuck in your head.
2~Dish Pit – 1000 Ways To Die
Grunge tinged punk – the vocal tones are somewhat Joan Jett-esque in parts of the song whilst the guitar is muffled but clear in its tune.
3~Yak – Bellyache
Funk infused beats, whimsical lyrics with a morbid but childish and whimsical tone to them along with the shouted vocals delivers a delightfully unsettling effect. This song really stands out – it’s really musically creative
4~Great Grandpa – Teen Challenge
Slightly disorienting but melodic vocals, making use of a strong guitar base. This is just overall a really fun song to listen to, especially the chorus.
5~Together PANGEA – Hi Fi Television
Fast paced, really enjoyable melody to listen to – the replay button is easily exhausted. Angry lyrics and agitated vocals to match, overriding tones of frustration. It’s a short burst of energy you wish was a bit longer – together PANGEA are a fantastic band!
6~FAVX – Vanilla
An odd little delight of a song starting with some deadpan spoken vocals, followed by a synthy, messy but awesome tune. It’s an attack on the ears full of strange white noise but equally a very enjoyable one. It’s nonsensical and fundamentally just weird, but that’s clear to be a good thing in this case.
7- pigs pigs pigs pigs pigs pigs pigs – GNT
With a strong attitude, this song is very very noisy, but very very cool. Rhythmic bass, some odd sort of sci-fi noises and hard rocking guitar marry together into a loud piece of ear candy. There’s not an awful lot to say but plug your earphones in and prepare for the bursting of your unsuspecting eardrums.
8~ Goat Girl – Creep
This is my personal favourite song from Goat Girl’s debut which came out in April (if you haven’t, give it a listen!!!). It’s a swinging sludgy alt rock song with folk tinged violins running through it. The song is a scathing ode to creepy men, and as well as delivering a message it’s a fantastic listen.
9~The Blinders – Hate Song
Ominous and creepy, this is a great song from a great band. The vocals are somewhat echoey, singing disturbing lyrics. It’s not short of meaning either, speaking of a “fascist police”, and everybody dancing to the same “hate song”. The music itself is cleverly written, the song speeds up in build ups, and breaks down a good few times, building up unease and tension – whilst it still manages to be catchy and enjoyable to listen to.
10~Gender Roles – About Her
Upbeat indie punk, some real good mood music – the guitar tone is pleasant and mellow whilst retaining that hard edge. It’s overall just a joy to listen to from start to finish. This is one for the sunny days
11~ Animal House – My Head Ain’t Right
Messy, spontaneous and fast paced punk. This song reminds me of Violent Femmes, and also Pixies (especially Surfer Rosa) in its vocal style and general tone.
12~Kid Kapichi – Revolver
Rhythm heavy, funk driven tune with clever lyrics. The vocal style is monotonous, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s used to convey nonchalance and gives a really cool effect along with the relatively heavy guitars throughout the song.
13~ Cabbage – Subhuman 2.0
The closing track to “nihilistic glamour shots” this song comes to about 6 minutes, and includes a fairly simple guitar to begin with, followed by some electronic sounds blending in, and after a while it builds up in volume and depth to become a swaying mass of sound that climaxes, then suddenly shrinks back to simplicity with very little warning. It’s a chilling closer to a chilling album
14~Black Honey – Hello Today
Melodic and pop tinged punk makes for a bubblegum listen with attitude. With an angry but sparky teenage attitude, the melody matches with it. The guitar is somewhat grungy but paired with a slick vocal it sounds clean and fresh. All round a feel good song
15-Grey Existence ~ Sweaty Palms
Swinging but upbeat rhythm paired with a strong guitar riff and minimalist tones toward the start of the song (especially before vocals kick in). The vocals are partly said (and shouted) and partly sung, which gives off this sense of unbotheredness. The chorus is a fun touch, background vocals sing ‘na na na’ like kids in a playground, and it’s fully enjoyable to listen to
16- Slurrin ~ Pleasure Heads
Grungy and fast paced, this is a little punk gem. A chorus that can only be described as thrashing sits between verses full of a fun melody. I could play this song on repeat all day for its loud and passionate vocals and catchy melody. Their latest ep is really great and if you haven’t, listen to it!
17- My Time Is Now ~ Shambolics
This is a strongly percussive number, involving a fun guitar riff and a vocal style drawing heavily on angsty tones, whilst still sounding upbeat and avoiding that emo whine. It’s optimistic despite this angsty vocal style, and the lyrics focus on opportunity which is nice to hear
18- Insecure Men ~ Mysterious Girl
It isn’t really punk (it’s literally a Peter Andre cover), but I love this too much not to include it on the list. With an elevator music esque tune played with sounds straight out of a children’s television show, the vocals are disassociated and distant but tuneful and pretty. It’s wistful and nostalgic in melody, but a little creepy with the echo of the vocal track and the whole tone of the song itself. A weird one but a good one.
19- Animals ~ Strange Bones
This isn’t all that new, and probably familiar to quite a lot of people, but I thought this was perfect for this list. Come to think of it, the whole “we the rats” ep (January 2017) is really good. This song has a ridiculously chantable chorus and heavy, solid rock guitars. It’s overall just a catchy hard rock song to headbang aggressively to. It’s the kind of song you can just let go and scream to, much like most other things strange bones do.
20- Romeo ~ Dumb
Pretty minimal, toned down punk with mostly spoken vocals – this song is kind of similar in tone to Violent Femmes’ first album (just a bit less acoustic) – the guitar work is clever but the song is really short, leaving the replay button temptingly on your screen. It’s scathing and sarcastic but great all the same
21-luvin u ~ Soft Girls And Boys Club
An absolutely adorable indie tinged love song full of bubblegum lyrics and a pretty melody (not very punk at all I know, but it’s a lovely song!). It’s acoustic and calm with slightly slurred vocals and a simple rhythm. It’s faded and a bit distant, definitely one for those evenings on the road when the sun’s setting and all is well
22- No Remark ~ Duds
Fast paced, a bit discordant with unbothered and monotonous spoken vocals. Sounds slightly unpleasant in theory but this is a really nice song, without a hugely thick texture and layers and layers of guitar tracks it is simple but it definitely works
23 – Lazy Anarchy ~ Cold Meat
Punk spirit shown off at its best – packed with anger and attitude, messy in a good way, and insanely catchy. It’s energetic and loud, and probably a complete riot to hear live. Lyrically it combats a false and put-on attitude of anarchy just for the sake of it, speaking of “useless noise” and “useless boys” to match.
24- Anarchy In The U.K. – Sex Pistols
What can I say? It’s a classic. Merry Christmas!