Words by Ben Blackburn
So here we are, the climax of Generator’s ‘Top of the Tips 2012’, as voted by our Tipping Point network. With this said, I’d like to thank everyone who has contributed a tip throughout 2012, it is with your insight and enthusiasm that we’re able to uncover and feature new artists, and ultimately share exciting new music to a wider audience. Therefore it is with great pleasure that I am able to reveal that our number 1 tip of 2012 is CHVRCHES.
Serial Tipper Simon Pursehouse first tipped CHVRCHES way back in July, just after they had uploaded their debut track ‘Lies’. Immediately lighting up the blogosphere, little was known about the band as they then revealed their latest offering ‘The Mother We Share’, which has received more than a quarter of a million plays on CHVRCHES’ Soundcloud. After the shroud of mystery was slowly unraveled, with the discovery the band contained former members of Aerogramme and The Twilight Sad, a wider audience quickly settled in to their electro-pop stylings, with fans and critics alike drawing comparisons to the likes of Robyn, M83 and The Knife. Having also made the BBC Sound of 2013 list, CHVRCHES are entirely worthy of their Number 1 spot, and we can only watch with an eager anticipation as we enter the uncharted territory of 2013.
Until then, on behalf of everyone from Generator Tipping Point HQ, we hope you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
THE MOTHER WE SHARE
Words by Toby Rogers
With the clarion call to arms of "music to roll and smoke, music to fuck you in the heart," Birmingham newcomers PEACE aren't the hippy-dippy stoners their name suggests. More hate and war than hashish and love beads, the four-piece aren't averse to the odd bout of fisticuffs with wayward fans.
Long-listed for the BBC's Sound Of 2013, for PEACE the accolade's deserved. They're a band with stadium-sized ambitions; but one far removed from the glut of laddish Kasabian knock-offs clogging up my inbox. Pitching themselves between Primal Scream, Led Zeppelin and The Cure, PEACE are lighting the touchpaper on a revolution.
Formed little more than a year or so ago, PEACE were bubbling under the West Midlands indie radar until the homemade video for 'Bblood' went viral. Made simply to share the song with their mates, it caught the ears of a music press hungry for the next great British guitar band. It scored them a New Band Of The Day article on The Guardian's website and saw them described as "a cross between Wu Lyf and Foals"; a tag that's fits perfectly.
Now signed to Columbia, the band's latest release, EP Delicious, is a startling blend of danceable indie-rock that's firm evidence of why they're so hotly tipped. Influenced in equal measure by acid house and Echo and the Bunnynem, PEACE deliver a dark, citrus shake that's laden with explosive innovation.
WE WILL WAKE
We first featured this 'melancholica' four piece back in June when Ben Blackburn wrote about their second single 'Heartbeat' and it's sonic progression from their first official release alongside a rapid developing fanbase. It seems that this Bristol outfit started as they meant to go on with the release of their 'We Will Wake' EP which brings a more anthemic quality to their sound compared to their early minimal foundations.
The tracks are still underpinned by the bands trademark trappings of melancholic piano and dark electronic beats, layered with soft vocals pouring tales of heartbreak. Seasfire have garnered support from Huw Stephens and Annie Mac as well as being one of the most blogged artists of 2012, they have also played the BBC Introducing stage at the Reading and Leeds Festivals and supported the likes of Bastille and Spector. If they continue you like this then they're set for an even bigger year in 2013.
First tipped by Linn Branson
Words by Grant Brydon
It’s been great to watch the rise of Lulu James since I last wrote about her for The Tipping Point back in May. Having also featured her in my SB.TV ‘Ones To Watch’ column I remember being packed into the Cluny for her EP launch, surprised by how compelling and confident she was as a performer who seemed to pretty much come out of nowhere, splicing up her deep and almost trance inducing performances with doses of her friendly North-East dialect.
Fast forward to now and she’s conquered so much over the past eight months, having performed on the main stage at Evolution in Newcastle, to now being signed to one of the most exciting UK independents Black Butter Records, touring with Rudimental, and just yesterday I opened Dazed & Confused to find her amongst the likes of Darq E Freaker, RoxXxan and Unicorn Kid as Puma’s Class of ’13. She is undoubtedly one of the most exciting artists coming out of the North East’s UK Bass music, Electronic and Urban scenes (choose your own pigeonhole) and we can’t wait to see where next year takes her!
First tipped by Generator's Artist Development Team
SAY TO ME
Words by Linsey Teggert
When it comes to the whole 'women in rock' debate (which shouldn't even be an issue anymore, but sadly there'll always be the meat-headed naysayers) I'm a firm believer that us lasses can do it just as well as the lads, if not better. You just need to glance into musical history to see this is true: Joan Jett, Kim Gordon, Kathleen Hanna, Kim Deal et al - all totally bad-ass with buckets of talent to match the attitude. In recent years we've had the likes of Vivian Girls, Warpaint and Dum Dum Girls showing the boys that girls in bands are way more than just a pretty face.
We first tipped Manchester's PINS back in April when the all-girl four-piece had the bloggers rubbing their hands with glee. Sure they look achingly cool (think Warhol meets the 70s No Wave moment: smoky New York basements and smudged eyeliner), but they're also one of the most exciting bands to emerge from the UK in 2012. Their debut track, 'Eleventh Hour' was very C86; a hypnotic blend of fuzzy shoegaze and jangly indie-pop with dreamy, far-away vocals (they even realeased it on cassette), though PINS tread a much darker path than a lot of the other C86 revivalists. There's a sense of menace in the distorted vocals and a brooding, slightly claustrophobic atmosphere that Manchester bands seem to have a knack of perfecting.
Having recently penned a deal with Bella Union, PINS' latest track, 'Say To Me' sees the band embracing their down-and-dirty side. A much more confident track than 'Eleventh Hour', 'Say To Me' builds on the sense of threat of 'Eleventh Hour' to become downright snarling. Stomping drums and grungy guitars are offset by background coos, creating a disorienting feeling. If this song were a statement, it would basically say 'yeah, we're totally hot and enticing, but we could also chew you up and spit you out.' Take that boys.
First tipped by Shell Zenner