8 Artists to Watch in 2018: Samsaruh, Fenne Lily, Willaris. K

As we continue to barrel through the opening month of 2018, so too have come debut singles, EPs, studio record announcements and festival line ups that have boasted some of the country’s best emerging names, not to mention those from abroad.

Our playlists are coming together with a steadfast list of new names, but we’ve picked out just ten that we reckon are in for a good one this year.

SAMSARUH 

First up, Samsurah. This Melbourne-based Indie singer and songwriter took us by storm when she stepped onto the music scene last year in 2017. Her debut releases gained her a No.1 spot on Triple J and her most recent single “Beautiful Killer'”was added on full rotation. Having appeared on New Year’s festival line ups including those of the Falls Festival and NYE on the Hill, Samsaruh’s skills as a live performer have been turning heads.

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SLOWLY SLOWLY

Next up, comes Melbourne based rock band Slowly Slowly. We’ve been champions of these guys for a while now but with the release of their latest single “Aliens”, the title track of their forthcoming sophomore album, we’ve seen a new facet to the band’s sense of songwriting and musicality. Keeping that emotional punch of “Chamomile” and “PMTWGR”, Slowly Slowly are levelling up and “Aliens” displays their penchant for heart-wrenching music, with lyrics worn on sleeve.

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WILLARIS. K

This 23-year-old NSW based producer has a truly unique style unlike anything we’ve heard before. The textures and tempos on tracks such as “Alchemy”  and “Dour Nights” show this up and coming artist has something we want to watch. Willaris. K has been played on Triple J and triple J Unearthed, and is set to perform at multiple gigs including Laneway Festival and Rainbow Serpent Festival.

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BUGS

This trio from Brisbane have been making headlines since 2016 with their happy, pop, punk, indie sound. Following on from sold out East Coast shows, they were featured on Triple J playing buzz-worthy songs such as “Instant Coffee” and “Best Friend”They ended 2017 with a bang by concluding their next six track EP which is set for release this year, not long after a massively successful performance at the Falls Music and Arts Festival on New Year’s Day.

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ANTEROS

This British act have been making considerable waves through 2017; our time spent in the UK during The Great Escape saw us first properly introduced to the group. Their 2017 EP Drunk had Anteros tour consistently and though their support slots alongside the likes of White Lies and Two Door Cinema Club landed the band on larger stages, their finessing of their dreamy pop music in studio is what has been exciting us the most, looking ahead.

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FENNE LILY

The Bristol artist has been on our radar for a few years; her connection with both Marlon Williams and Aldous Harding drawing our attention last year in particular. Consistently releasing music through 2017 independently, while continuing to lock down show after show not only demonstrates Lily’s solid work ethic and formula for getting her craft out to more people, but it’s exciting to see where she’s heading next. The momentum is definitely there for this songwriter and going off what we’ve already seen, she’s got solid musicianship on her side.

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A. SWAYZE & THE GHOSTS.

A. Swayze & the Ghosts are an indie, punk, rock band that are known to give their audiences nothing less than a raw and energetic live experience. It’s been a busy and amazing past year for these guys, playing at massively recognised gigs such as Falls Festival, MONA Faux Mo, Boogie Festival, and By The Meadow. They released their debut single in 2016 and since then have released a stellar EP in late 2017. Big, big year ahead.

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JOE FOX

Another artist we first saw in the UK back in 2017, singer songwriter Joe Fox was an instant winner back then. His collaborations on A$AP Rocky’s At.Long.Last.A$AP album drew many in initially, but Fox’s voice, charm and way of delivering some soulful, rich music brought him out of the ‘guest’ shadow and properly into his own. Having recorded with a slew of impressive names on his own music including the Dap Kings, Fox has had an excellent musical playground to dabble in and though he’s still in the early stages of his career, the moves he’s making are already indicating he’s got a huge year ahead.

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SHAME

These Londoners are soon to be out in Australia, very soon, in fact, as the Laneway Festival will be the entry point for many new Shame fans for sure. Again, another group who made last year their own, Shame’s debut album Songs of Praise firmly established the post punk group as one to keep eyes on this year. Fiery and unashamedly brash in their approach, Shame are set to be the soundtrack of many a thrashing partay this year, no doubt.

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Additional words by Sosefina Fuamoli.

Photo of Samsaruh: Dan Boud.