The sound of our 2017 has been absolutely insane! Its times like this when we reflect on the year recently passed, remembering some of the astonishing tracks that simply blew our minds on release day, and still continue to now! It makes us so grateful to be around at such an exciting time for the indie music scene so here is our ICM award homage to the amazing musicians who have produced and supplied with us pure beauty and bliss. Details on how to vote are below.
Fickle Friends – Glue
Catchy and upbeat songs are the whole essence of summer and always do well. So when the Brighton five-piece dropped ‘Glue’ back in June it was just the perfect recipe for success. This band love their shimmering vocals and infectious tunes and lyrics, I just suggest you book a gig of theirs so you don’t miss out on a valuable experience!
Tom Grennan – Found What I’ve Been Looking For
The swagger-filled track fuses his classic, singer-songwriter style with elements of funk and soul, his vocals totally impeccable, was BBC Radio 1’s hottest record in the world and our Song Of The Week in July, then to top off his year, the track was included in EA Sports FIFA 18. His slightly rusty vocals are infectious, always wanting more. His cocky aura and outgoing nature only adds to the quality his producing. And when you produce absolute bangers like this, Tom Grennan is onto great things.
Marsicans – Too Good
A charming bunch of lads from Leeds, Marsicans like to keep themselves busy making sweet melodies and great live music vibes and ‘Too Good’ proves just how good they are when they bring it all together in the studio. We’ve also seen the four-piece a few times now and we can tell they’ve been perfecting their live sound too, so if they happen to play a town nearby you then make sure you turn up.
Nothing But Thieves – Amsterdam
The Southend-on-Sea band blew 2017 out of the water with their sophomore album ‘Broken Machine’ and especially with lead single ‘Amsterdam’. With Phil Blake’s pulsating bassline helping steer the track in a solid direction alongside sharp percussive work from James Price before the song launches into a colossal, anthemic chorus. Very few bands can fasten the power of alternative rock with dramatic, soaring vocals and make it sound authentic. Nothing but Thieves do exactly that.
Portugal. The Man – Feel It Still
‘Feel’ It Still’ has become a global sensation that will get you singing along in no time with that dirty bass line add up to a swinging slice of psych-pop. However, the UK public hasn’t connected with Portugal. The Man that the rest of the world has. Which to me is a strange one as alt-pop and hip-hop music combination works so well together, I feel that we’re giving them an injustice.
Circa Waves – Fire That Burns
‘Fire That Burns’ takes on the darker approach to their Young Chasers album with their typical hard-core rock put the band in a great position ahead of the album release. It’s strong and powerful presence from the Liverpudlians produced an outstanding sophomore album which was gripping and thrilling, you can class this track as a ‘banger’.
Hippo Campus – Way It Goes
Minnesota four-piece Hippo Campus have been under our radar since 2015 when they first released their EP ‘Bashful Creatures’ now fast forward to 2017 and the band were hiding their secret weapons ‘boyish’ and ‘way it goes’. ‘way it goes’ reminisces of teenage nostalgia taking us to your typical snowy cabin in the middle of nowhere just chilling in front of an open fire (like in their official music video), even though the track has a summery indie-pop vibe.
The Killers – The Man
The Killers made their ultimate comeback this year with the release of their new album ‘Wonderful Wonderful’. The Man was the first track they released since 2012’s Battle Born and this song still proves they have it after many thought they lost their touch. The funky, bass-driven track packs extra grooves with the addition of a backup choir. This and ‘Run For Cover’ are exceptional tunes of musical talent. Who ever doubted The Killers…
The Wombats – Lemon To A Knife Fight
The Wombats make a magnificent return last month with their new single ‘Lemon To A Knife Fight’. They are one of them bands that will stand the test of time. Their development from their debut album, ‘A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation’ has been incredible. In classic indie pop Wombats style, the band have constantly progressed from upbeat indie pop to a more synth-driven affair. 2018 can only get better for The Wombats so be on the lookout for their next tune.
Bad Sounds – Zacharia
Taken from their Phresssh EP, ‘Zacharia’ is one of the strongest openers we’ve seen this year to an EP. With catchy lyrics in a beautiful rhythm and 70s mixed with 80s feel it’s understandable while this was chosen to open up the five-track EP. I’d recommend checking out one of their live performances, which are just as obscure and inventive as their sound. They don’t just perform a gig for the audience, they throw a party, with one gig seeing them bring a confetti canon that they were shooting into the fans.