Let’s take a look at some of the most buzz-worthy artists of 2018. All of these artists have the potential to break through and dominate the music conversation, whether they are brand new acts or acts returning with new projects.
Norwegian synth-pop up-and-comer Sigrid (pictured at the end of the article) should release her debut album in 2018. Sigrid has been picking up momentum since February 2017, when the release of single “Don’t Kill My Vibe” electrified pop lovers with its buildup and explosive chorus. After a spectacular festival season with performances at Glastonbury and Roskilde festival and her cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Everybody Knows,” which is featured on the Justice League soundtrack, Sigrid is looking to dominate 2018. She has been named BBC Sound of 2018 and is already scheduled to perform at Coachella, and boasts a sold-out U.K. tour, along with a few U.S. dates (sorry, New York City is already sold out). She has become a voice for teenagers and women and just scored her first U.K. #1 on the iTunes chart with “Strangers.”
This psych-pop duo has been around since 2008 when Oracular Spectacular emerged with hits “Electric Feel” and “Kids.” Layered, unpredictable pop melodies and trippy music videos have become MGMT’s most recognizable trademark, and their style has paved the way for new acts like Tame Impala and Superorganism (mentioned later). They had success with albums that followed but garnered a more mixed critical reception with their most recent album, which was criticized for trying to do too much. However, MGMT has released three exciting singles to precede their new album Little Dark Age, which is scheduled to arrive early this year. These singles are each distinct in their lyrics and sound, and they point to an interesting new album.
After a very promising debut with 2015’s Blue Neighbourhood, Troye Sivan resurfaced last week with pop banger “My My My!” His ubiquity on YouTube and distinct style of alternative electropop have found him a fiercely loyal fanbase, and 2018 should find him greater critical acclaim with the release of his sophomore album. Sivan’s lyrics cover topics of relationships and LGBTQ-activism, and he has been praised for his autobiographical content and for spreading positivity among his fans. He performed on SNL last weekend, singing “My My My!” and atmospheric ballad “The Good Side” (my favorite release of the last six months), and one can only hope that his voice was able to reach new listeners.
Superorganism is an 8-person psych-pop group with a background story just as enthralling as its music. With members hailing from New Zealand, England, Japan, South Korea, and Australia, they now live together in England, but wrote and produced debut single “Something For Your M.I.N.D.” from across the Atlantic, while lead vocalist Orono was studying in Maine. However, Superorganism is not all about Orono’s aloof, mesmerizing lead vocals; each of its songs is an eclectic piece filled with samples and interesting instrumentation. For example, in their first performance on American soil, each band member held an apple, and took a bite in unison to add an effect at the end of the first chorus. With an album coming out on March 2 and growing traction in the U.S. and overseas, Superorganism might make a mark on the 2018 music scene.
We’ve all been waiting to see which huge, established artist would release new music first in 2018. Drake acted first, releasing “God’s Plan” and “Diplomatic Immunity” on Jan. 20. Both songs hint at a return to early Drake’s style, while steering away from the tropical-house direction Drake has been heading in recent years. Whether these two songs will be a part of a larger project is unclear, but these songs are sure to be unavoidable on hip-hop radio.