Tipped for the Top; up and coming artists destined for Brit Award success

After another award ceremony in which Adele stole the spotlight for a second time, following her recent raid at the Grammys, we look at some of the up and coming artists predicted to compete for next year’s crown.   This year’s Brit Awards left a sour taste in many people’s mouths after Adele’s final speech was rudely interrupted due to an overlap in the running time. This may have been the major talking point of the event, but it certainly didn’t overshadow the talent on offer, with live performances from the likes of Rihanna, Coldplay, Florence, Blur and many more.

Adele was not the only British artist to shine, as Ed Sheeran also bagged himself two awards, including Best British Breakthrough artist.  Here at Sounds from the Steel we’ve put our thinking caps on and come up with a shortlist of contenders for next year’s award.

At 5 is folk and soul singer Ben Howard. Often compared to Ed Sheeran because of his fan base, Ben has earned himself a cult following over the past two years, and left his mark on the British music scene with the release of his debut album ‘Every Kingdom’. The album peaked at number 7 in the UK charts and is scheduled to be released in America later this year. His acoustic style and soothing vocals create one of the most relaxing, must listen to songs of the year and undeniably warrants his inclusion on this list.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dnxCxHLAqn8&ob=av2e

At 4 is the ever cool Azelia Banks. Topping NME’s cool list for 2011 just ahead of Sheffield’s very own, Jarvis Cocker, she has burst onto the scene with a real flourish, finishing third in the BBC Sound Award’s 2012. Her care free attitude and controversial lyrics means she has accumulated a bad girl image, one that the Harlem born rapper is sure to build on. She puts the word rude into rudimentary with her latest song ‘212’ featuring lazy Jay, which reached number 75 in the UK charts. Currently touring Britain as part of her NME Awards tour, Azelia is definitely one to watch.

At 3 is Essex band, The Milk. A mixture of soul, motown and jazz all combined into one has helped create one of the most exciting debut EP’s of 2011. The band has recently signed a contract with Sony and was nominated for ‘Best Breakthrough Artist’ at the UK festival awards alongside the likes of Jessie J and Bruno Mars. As part of their UK tour the boys will soon be stopping off in Sheffield, hosting a free gig at the SOYO on Monday the 19th of March. Don’t forget to follow the band and witness their inevitable rise to success in 2012. For further ticket information visit http://www.the-plug.com/events-and-tickets/live/milk-soyo

At 2 is American singer-songwriter Frank Ocean. Set to release his debut album sometime early this year, he’s got all the critics waiting in anticipation for what could be the next big thing. His self-released EP last year got everyone talking and received great feedback throughout the music industry. Since then Frank has gone onto feature in two tracks from Jay-Z and Kanye West’s album ‘Watch the Throne’ and signed a recording deal with Def Jam records. Coming runner up in this year’s BBC Sound Award’s, we very much expect him to be charting around the world in 2012.

At 1 is British soul singer, and man of the moment, Michael Kiwanuka. Coming off the back of winning the BBC Sound Award, he is set to release his debut album ‘Home Again’ next month. Spending most of 2011 supporting Adele on both her Adele Live and I-tunes festival tour, Michael released the first single of his up and coming Album on the 1st of January 2012. It reached number 29 in the UK charts and is expected to rise further still with the release of his album. His soulful voice and soft melodies make comparisons to Jack Johnson inevitable, but he’s arguably the most promising talent to come out of Britain this year. More excitingly is the recent announcement that Michael himself will be coming to Sheffield to play live at the Leadmill on the 21st of May. Be sure to be there as this is the man I’m backing to win next year’s British Breakthrough act.

For further information and tickets visit http://michaelkiwanuka.com/

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