2017 has brought many musical surprises to the ears of fans across the globe. One of which is the huge surge in soloist musicians creating great names for themselves and releasing their creative musical endeavours into the world. We felt it was only right to add a BRAND NEW award category to the ICM Awards to showcase some of their remarkable achievements.
Rhys Lewis has provided his fans with a genuine personality. One that carries within his musical output. He comes across as a ‘real’ artist. It’s this edge that has allowed him to gain such great reception among his 5 release this year. Kicking off the year with ‘Living In The City’ and ending the year on a high with ‘Reason To Hate You’, Rhys has taken his fans on an epic journey spamming across the nation and parts of Europe! Spreading his infectious soulful voice right across the continent is only the start for Rhys Lewis.
Where, oh where do we start. Louis F****** Berry. His style, energy, passion, attitude, aurora. It provokes curiosity and thats what’s led to his success within 2017. He comes across as this serious, do-what-he-wants kind of guy, yet in reality at his live events, he is this cheeky chappy who is just living in the moment. He’s forming an army. An army of collective minds who love nothing more than to jump up and down to high tempo catchy pure indie riffs. So, watch out!
Portsmouth gal Jerry Williams has been working non-stop this year and it is all paying off. Her single ‘Mother’, released last year, was the starting point and since then has been featured on Radio 1, and numerous festival slots in the UK and Europe such as CloseUp Promotions and Bilboloop. Her new single ‘Grab Life’ brings out the raw vocals in her voice and sounds so sweet and innocent. Her songwriting is flawless, there’s so much potential locked inside she just needs more time to blossom.
We absolutely love Scott Verrill, the man behind KYKO. His music career has gone from strength to strength since the release of his ‘Animals’ EP in 2015. His current EP ‘Wildlife’ is outstanding, HIS indie-pop has a distinct tropical edge, fusing melodic guitar rhythms with a soulful vocal tone and a whole lot of spirit, KYKO is creating something special. And let’s not forget that his live performances are out of this world too! They’re so punchy and powerful you’ll be dancing in no time. Be prepared for his new track coming out in the next couple of months.
Welsh singer and songwriter Sarah Howells aka Bryde is a girl armed with an electric guitar playing fierce and fragile songs. New single ‘Desire’ was mixed by CJ Marks, (St Vincent, Wolf Alice and PJ Harvey) so she’s not messing about. With an ever growing fan-base, Bryde is expected to release her debut album in Spring 2018. We cannot wait!
Willie J Healy
Willie J Healy took us by surprise when he was featured at Flying Vinyl Festival 2. His scuzzy rock takes us back to a more simpler time when the likes of Weezer and Wheatus ruled the earth with classic riffs and meaning vocals about teenage angst and the effervescent complicated feelings of life. WJH is an indie dreamboat in the making. Coming off the back of a tour with Sundara Karma will only catapult this young mans destiny in the right direction. WJH is not one to miss.
Tom Walker as been storming his way through the industry since the release of his hit single ‘Just You and I’, driven by delicate acoustic guitars, immersive production, soulful delivery making it a beautifully written song that has reached over 15 million plays on Spotify. Tom Walker’s intense soul-stirring lyrics in ‘Leave A Light On’ we’re hoping there will be plenty more like it!
Soulful, intricate, inspiring and truly innovative. Rationale brings this fresh, enlightening self-entitled album to us all in 2017 and to our dismay, it is slightly overlooked. For an artist with such stage presence and confidence, Rationale should have been a highlight to many this year, but as his album drops we see it drift into the shadows even more than his artist imagery portrays. We’ve been following Rationale ever since he released his initial EP and singles, then when he supported Bastille on their Wild World Tour he cemented himself as an artist to watch out for. Here is our homage to Rationale, an artist highly underrated!
Have you ever come across a more talented young individual in the music world? Possibly, but they are in no way on Declan McKenna’s level. This young lad is extraordinary in the way he composes himself in the studio and on stage. Performing for the masses at multiple UK festivals whilst also travelling the states and gracing more with his musical presence, Declan McKenna has certainly grabbed life with a tight grip and taken 2017 as his own. Deservedly so too, his debut album, ‘What Do You Think About The Car?’, dropped earlier this year and proved to one of the many highlights of the year.
London artist Cape Cub has been dropping the hook-ridden and lyrically-fuelled tracks this year in ‘Flowers’, featured as Song Of The Week and ‘Searchlight’. Being locked away writing and recording music under new label Lab Records has given Cape Cub time to grow and blossom into an artist that is clearly prepared for 2018.