GIHE: Ones To Watch 2022

It’s safe to say 2021 has been a tough one… But if there’s one positive to take away from this year, it’s the immense amount of incredible new music that’s been released, and the hope of even more sublime offerings from some wonderful new bands in 2022.

For our final annual end of year round-up, we’re sharing our ‘Ones To Watch’ for 2022… Just a few of the amazing bands and artists who have impressed us throughout 2021, and that we predict will be reaching ears far and wide next year… Have a read of our choices, and make sure you give them all a follow to keep track of their unmissable achievements over the next 12 months.

Cherym
Derry trio Cherym are one of my favourite discoveries of the year. Having had their EP Hey Tori pretty much on repeat over the last few months, seeing their gig at Paper Dress Vintage in October left me buzzing with a joyous sense of nostalgic euphoria – not only because it was my first gig since Covid, but because of the band’s unmatched exuberant energy and fiery spirit. Each of their songs is a perfect ​​master class in pure, perfect punk-pop – instant singalong anthems. I just can’t get enough of their empowering energy and bubbling, sugar-coated scuzz. And, having now been featured in Kerrang!, and with plans to play at SXSW this Spring, it seems they’re definitely ones to keep your eyes and ears out for in 2022! 
(Mari Lane – Co-Founder)


Pretty Happy 
I still crack up when I think of Pretty Happy guitarist Abbey Blake commenting “you’re the first person to say we have genuine talent” when I told them how great I thought their music was back in September. Together, Pretty Happy – aka art-punk trio Abbey, Arann Blake and Andy Killian – create riotous, tongue-in-cheek offerings often centred around their observations and experiences of living in their home county of Cork, Ireland. I had their EP Sluggers Bridge on heavy rotation during 2021, chanting along to ‘Sea Sea Sea’ and ‘Sudocrem’ as loudly and obnoxious-ly as possible. The band should hopefully be supporting Gilla Band on NYE if restrictions in Ireland allow, and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that they’ll make it over to the UK in 2022 so I can see them live for the first time.
(Kate Crudgington – Co-Founder)


BAXTR
Blasting out the pink, fuzzy energy we’ve so needed this year, and having received acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing, London trio Floss, Bash and Keiko – aka BAXTR – have fast become one of my favourite bands of 2021. With sunny, uplifting singles such as ‘In Pop We Trust’ and ‘Grace On Fire’, the band showcase their knack for combining a kitsch, honey-sweet pop allure with a fierce, frenzied rock spirit, consistently delivering an effervescent, euphoric power with each frenzied, fun-filled floor-filler. A band on the rise for sure, I can’t wait to host BAXTR playing live for us at The Shacklewell Arms on 24th February, along with headliners Jenny Moore’s Mystic Business and Sheffield band Potpourri. Get your tickets on DICE now. 
(ML)


Grandmas House
Since I heard the opening riff of ‘Always Happy’ by Bristol trio Grandmas House, I have been hooked on their sardonic, thumping post-punk sounds. Formed of Yasmin Berndt, Poppy Dodgson and Zoë Zinsmeister, the band combine gritty guitars, powerhouse percussion and visceral vocals to create intensely relatable anthems. Watching them live at The WIndmill in Brixton was a real joy this year and I look forward to insisting Mari buy their last tote bag at the merch stand at more of their gigs in the future.
(KC)


Queen Cult
Following acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing for their debut single ‘Shindigger‘, and support for explosive recent offerings ‘Show & Tell’ and ‘A Song About Consent’ from big names such as Bang Bang Romeo, Cheshire band Queen Cult have been fast making a name for themselves this year. Consisting of front person Maisie Johnson and bassist Leila Jacklin, as well as Brodie Carson on drums and Piers Jarvis on guitar, the band pride themselves on their LGBTQ+ identity and sharing their queer, politically-charged messages with the masses, and I cannot get enough of their seething, gritty energy and riotous, angst-driven power. And, with a tour with GIHE faves LibraLibra set for January, it seems as though many more people will be being lured to the band’s fierce colossal spirit and instantly catchy musicality very soon. 
(ML)


Brimheim
I have Mari to thank for bringing Danish artist Brimheim to my attention this year, after she played her shadowy, sublime single ‘poison fizzing on a tongue’ on our radio show. Brimheim’s buoyant second single ‘hey amanda’ is a gentler, but equally as emotive track that showcases her talent for capturing a moment in its purest form. I’m so excited to hear her new album, the magnificently titled can’t hate myself into a different shape, when it’s released in January 2022.
(KC)


45ACIDBABIES
Dutch garage-pop punks 45ACIDBABIES have been providing a welcome quirky, fizzing soundtrack throughout 2021. Having previously shared stages with the likes of Sleigh Bells and Blood Red Shoes, with singles such as ‘Mommy’s Favourite 1’ and ‘Only Class6 From Now On’, they have showcased their ability to create perfectly catchy, danceable anthems. With each single offering a wonderfully obscure cacophony propelled by a swirling energy and vibrant honey-sweet allure, the band have already gathered a huge fan-base in their native Holland (with over 685k streams of their music on Spotify this year), but I predict that 2022 sees them headed for world domination… Watch this space! 
(ML)

Lilith Ai
Self-described as “a singer-songwriter who performs poignant tales of modern city life,” Lilith Ai writes relatable guitar tunes exploring turbulent emotions in a humble and engaging way. She was modest, self-deprecating but incredibly warm and open to talking about all aspects of her life and art when I spoke to her about her album, Folk You Hard, earlier in the year. Loud Women also awarded her their prestigious Hercury Prize Award for the record, which is further proof she’s definitely one to watch in 2022.
(KC)


The Menstrual Cramps
Having been massive fans of raging queer punks The Menstrual Cramps since 2017’s debut album We’re Not Ovaryacting, and had the honour of hosting an epic night of them playing live for us at The Finsbury back in 2018 as well as having them as guests on our radio show, we have been wallowing in a Menstrual Cramps-less void for the last couple of years as the band were on a little hiatus. But, at the beginning of this week, just when we thought all was lost and we’d given up any hope of 2022 being better than the last two years… The Menstrual Cramps announced their return! Joining front person Emilia and drummer AJ, the band introduced two new members, Abi and Zam, and have promised new music for us. I cannot wait for more of their politically-charged, immensely empowering anthems! 
(ML)

Check out our Tracks Of 2021, Albums & EPs of 2021 and Personal Highlights now. Massive thanks to all who’ve supported GIHE this year, it really means the world. And huge thanks too to all the amazing bands and artists who’ve soundtracked it, and who will continue to soundtrack 2022!

Track Of The Day: Queen Cult – ‘A Song About Consent’

Following acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing for their debut single ‘Shindigger‘, and support for explosive recent offering ‘Show & Tell‘, Cheshire band Queen Cult have been fast making a name for themselves. Consisting of front person Maisie Johnson and bassist Leila Jacklin, as well as Brodie Carson on drums and Piers Jarvis on guitar, the band pride themselves on their LGBTQ+ identity and sharing their queer, politically-charged messages with the masses; and, having recently pulled out of Hit The North festival due to allegations against promoter SSD Concerts, their dedication to smashing the patriarchy and standing up for what’s right remains steadfast and unwavering.

With a gritty, seething energy, brand new single ‘A Song About Consent‘ offers an all-too-resonant message about the challenges women and girls have to face every day in the face of the male gaze. With an impassioned, angst-driven power, it’s a swirling statement of intent, raging with a poignant fervour against men’s entitlement over our bodies. As front person Maisie fiercely proclaims that “consensuality is a thing”, she assures us that our voices should be heard; that we are entitled to have control over own bodies, and should feel safe in this knowledge. With a blazing grit, the track pulls no punches as it rages against the culture of victim blaming and society’s expectation that we are responsible for changing ourselves to protect us from harm, rather than holding the perpetrators of abuse to account. Of the meaning behind track, Maisie comments:

Watching the news about the murder of Sarah Everard by a policeman hit us immensely. Seeing it unfold into what didn’t seem real. We questioned our upbringings, what our mothers told us whilst growing up. Things to remember to keep safe. And realising just how messed up that is. We wrote this song because we were shook by the idea of having to change anything about simply existing as a woman in this world. We do not stand for inequality. We do not stand for abuse. We stand for consent, decency and respect.” 

Another immense slice of pop-infused rock ‘n’ roll from Queen Cult, ‘A Song About Consent’ builds with a stirring tension and soulful raw emotion, alongside sweeping fizzing riffs, to offer a completely necessary and ferociously poignant listen, fuelled by a colossal, and instantly catchy, musicality. So, blast it into your ears, immerse yourself in its riotous catharsis, and stand up and join the fight against the patriarchy now!

Watch the new video for ‘A Song About Consent’ now:


‘A Song About Consent’ is out now. Catch Queen Cult live in Manchester at The Castle Hotel on 18th November – tickets here.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Debbie Ellis / A Supreme Shot

PLAYLIST: October 2021

The GIHE team have unearthed more new music gems for you to listen to on our October Playlist! There’s an eclectic mix of indie anthems, gritty guitar tunes, alt-pop tracks & immersive electronic sounds. Take some time to scroll through our track choices below and make sure you hit play on the Spotify playlist at the end of this post.

Follow GIHE on Spotify to hear all of our previous playlists too.

Boy Harsher – ‘Tower’
It’s almost Halloween (aka Goth Christmas) so this shadowy electronic tune is a great way to kick off our October Playlist. Boy Harsher are fully leaning in to their cinematic tendencies on ‘Tower’ which is taken from their upcoming album The Runner. Set for release on 21st January, the record will be a “musical counterpart” to an accompanying short film written, produced & directed by the talented duo. (Kate Crudgington)

Brimheim – ‘poison fizzing on a tongue’
The recent single from Danish alt-pop artist Brimheim, ‘poison fizzing on a tongue’ oozes a glitchy, ethereal splendour. With its soaring, other-wordly allure, it reminds me of the dark majesty of Massive Attack, which is no bad thing! Brimheim releases her debut album Can’t Help Myself Into A Different Shape in January next year. (Mari Lane)

deep tan – ‘Tamu’s Yiffing Refuge’
Following the recent release of their stirring, and utterly unique EP creeping speedwells, East London trio deep tan return with a special one-off single, taken from the label Speedy Wunderground’s new compilation. As strangely kinky as the name would suggest, ‘tamu’s yiffing refuge’ is an explicit tale of furry hedonism. Maintaining all the immersive, seductive allure that we’ve come to know and love from the band, this latest offering oozes an added dark, psychedelic haze and frenzied post-punk drive reminiscent of the likes of legends The Slits. A truly mystical, compelling soundscape that’ll peculiarly entice you into its swirling, fur-filled cacophony. (ML)

New Pagans – ‘Find Fault With Me’
I am thrilled that Belfast’s New Pagans are BACK with this brilliant new single after the release of their debut album, The Seed, The Vessel, The Roots And All earlier this year. Vocalist Lyndsey McDougall says this track is about “checking in with each other and recognising when someone around you needs support.” (KC)

Death Valley Girls – ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing’
A stand alone single from LA dystopian punk band Death Valley Girls, ‘It’s All Really Kind Of Amazing‘ offers a swift glimpse of positivity. As the raw, impassioned splendour of Bonnie Bloomgarden’s vocals soar throughout, it seems to be slightly less doom-laden in tone than previous offerings, but is no less stirring. Oozing a shimmering, trippy allure and swirling, vibrant energy reminiscent of The Kinks’ ‘Sunny Afternoon’, ‘it immerses the listener in its glistening euphoric haze, reminding us to relish those rare moments of beauty that can keep us going through challenging times. A mystically captivating retreat for the ears and mind. (ML)

Laura Lee & The Jettes – ‘Craigslist Boy’
I have drummer Eilis Frawley to thank for introducing me to this BANGER from German-based band Laura Lee & The Jettes. Eilis provides the beats for this playful anthem about vocalist Laura Lee’s experience of being pursued romantically by random men on the German version of eBay. Its relatability will make you laugh and eye roll in equal measure. Check out the accompanying video here. (KC)

Wet Leg – ‘Wet Dream’
Like everyone else with ears, I am OBSESSED with Isle of Wight duo Wet Leg. I caught them at their debut London show at Omeara last week and it was a JOY to listen to their infectious indie anthems. They also walked on stage to ‘Concerning Hobbits’ from The Lord Of The Rings soundtrack, which is an iconic move in itself. (KC)

Queen Cult – ‘Show & Tell’
The latest single from Cheshire band Queen Cult, ‘Show & Tell’ builds with a gritty, swirling energy to an empowered call to arms. I just can’t get enough of its relentless, searing force. (ML)

Nghtfall – ‘Evil Eye’
Following the heartfelt release of ‘I’ll Be Fine’ earlier this year, Toronto based non-binary artist Bradley Milosevic-Hill aka Nghtfall has recently shared ‘Evil Eye’. A sweeping slice of catchy anthemic pop, it oozes swirling feelings of anticipation and desire, creating a twinkling, emotion-strewn ballad. (ML)

girlhouse – ‘boundary issues’
I love this latest track from indie artist girlhouse, taken from her recent EP which is aptly titled, the second EP, quite simply lovely stuff. (Tash Walker)

HAVVK – ‘Halfway Out’
Taken from total faves HAVVK’s epic new album Levelling, stirring single ‘Halfway Out’ oozes an ethereal splendour as the haunting, celestial power of Julie’s vocals immerses the listener instantly. The whole album intertwines this captivating, twinkling majesty with a grunge-tinged grit throughout, and I can’t stop listening to it. I had the pleasure of chatting to front person Julie about the album and more last week – have a read of the interview here. (ML)

Sprints – ‘Modern Job’
I first heard Dublin’s Sprints on The Irish Jam radio show and I’m super grateful to them for the introduction. ‘Modern Job’, which is also the title track on the band’s upcoming EP (due on 11th March) is a scathing “critique of modern existence” and “an exploration of growing up queer” according to vocalist Karla Chubb. I can’t wait to hear the record in full. (KC)

Nova Twins – ‘Antagonist’
GIHE faves Nova Twins have shared this MASSIVE anthem about believing in yourself, full of their trademark lethal riffs and powerhouse vocals. (KC)

Tiger Mimic – ‘Silence Of The Night’
Propelled by an eerie energy, ‘Silence Of The Night’ reflects on the grim reality that women have to navigate on a daily basis. As the rich, sleek vocals of front woman Jess soar with a soulful power, it builds with a stirring tension to an impassioned statement of intent. A poignant call for justice and accountability at a time when we so desperately need it. You can catch the band live at The Victoria in Dalston on 9th December. (ML)

Sister Lucy – ‘Big Kid’
The second single from her upcoming EP Big Girl Pants, Sister Lucy aka Abi Sinclair’s single ‘Big Kid’ is a lush, grunge-tinged reflection on growth and womanhood. She’ll be playing a gig at The Shacklewell Arms on the 10th November to celebrate the EP’s release. (KC)

Elodie Gervaise – ‘Free Babe’
I am so into this song! All its mixed beats, intricate synths and electronics, it’s such a visually evocative track, you can just imagine the light show watching this being performed live. French-Australian artist, Elodie Gervaise’s new EP, Syzygy – which just feels oh so good to say – is out now. (TW)

Errunhrd – ‘Ruminate (Meditate)’
Niagra Falls based artist Errunhrd has penned this buoyant new track which shifts away from her previously more melancholic sounds. ‘Ruminate (Meditate)’ is taken from her debut album You Can Be You, I Can Be Me, which is set for release on 19th November. (KC)

Blonde Maze – ‘One House’
The latest single from New York artist Blonde Maze, ‘One House’ revolves around the comfort of finding a home in someone, especially after a long time of feeling misplaced. Oozing a blissful, soulful splendour, it flows with an utterly dreamy allure as Amanda’s soothing vocals ripple alongside twinkling electro hooks. Lately, as I’ve been going through a bit of a tough time, I’ve had this pretty much on a loop, and its sweeping euphoric energy helps to calm my mind instantly. Thank you Blonde Maze for another perfectly cathartic creation. And I’m SO excited that Blonde Maze’s debut album Something Familiar is set for release next week, 3rd November – haven’t looked forward to an album this much for a long time! (ML)

Mai – ‘Control’
An evocative electronic gem that urges listeners to surrender to the inevitability of change, I love Essex-based musician & vocalist Mai’s has debut single ‘Control’. Released via Cool Thing Records, the track is a collaboration between Mai aka Rosie Gulliver of Petty Phase, and songwriter and producer Liam Watkins from A Cause In Distress. (KC)

BISHI ft. Nikesh Shukla – ‘Language Is an Ocean’
Multi-instrumentalist and GIHE fave BISHI released her third album Let My Country Awake earlier this month, which this single is taken from. The record explores dual identities and urges listeners to lean into compassion and empathy in a chaotic and disconnected world. (KC)

Desire Marea – ‘You Think I’m Horny’ (Planningtorock’s ‘Planningtobehorny’ Version)
Tash & I are still on a high after seeing Planningtorock at Scala earlier this month, so when their remix of Desire Marea’s track ‘You Think I’m Horny’ dropped into my inbox I knew it was going straight on to our playlist! A great collaboration from two fantastic, unique artists. (KC)

AZADI.mp3 – ‘NAZAR’
I’ve been listening to the We Are Lady Parts playlist on Spotify recently and the algorithms led me to AZADI.mp3 – aka Juliette Motamed who plays drummer Ayesha in the hit Channel 4 show. She has a great set of electronic tunes that I’ve been listening to ever since. (KC)

Atna – ‘Smile’
“Why why why why why” …give me bizarre warped repetitive vocals from German avant-pop duo Atna ANY DAY. (TW)

Little Simz – ‘Speed’
Little Simz has done it again, latest album Sometimes I Might Be Introvert (in my case it’s always) is a total, immense masterpiece. ‘Speed’ is my favourite track on the album, in the same vein as previous faves ‘Boss’ and ‘Offence’, it’s propelled by a gritty, driving energy and Simz’s spot on lyricism, with a touch of orchestral grandeur. The perfect motivational anthem I’ve needed lately to get me through the day. (ML)

Kay Young ft. JNR WILLIAMS – ‘I’ve Got You’
‘I’ve Got You’ by London based artist, rapper and producer Kay Young featuring JNR Williams is such a feel good song! It’s taken from her EP This Here Feels Good, released via Play It Again Sam. (TW)

Duval Timothy ft. Lil Silva & Melanie Faye – ‘Fall Again’
I am totally obsessed and in love with this song. Rhythmic piano to start, before it slowly layers and builds with hazy, gentle vocals sweeping over the top. Such a dreamy sonic soundscape that feels so good in my ears. (TW)

Anna Vincent – ‘Naxos’
Having previously charmed us fronting indie-pop outfit Heavy Heart, and as a touring member of Happyness, after two decades making music London based Anna Vincent has now launched her first solo venture. With her debut album, Under The Glass (out today on Max Bloom of Yuck’s new label Ultimate Blends), she has recently been charming our ears with a number of shimmering singles, like the beautifully heartfelt ‘Naxos’. Exuding a spellbinding majestic grace alongside the stirring heartfelt emotion of Anna’s exquisite sparkling vocals, each track offers a truly blissful, captivating soundscape. (ML)

CMAT -‘No More Virgos’
Born from her desire to “marry her love of 80’s Italo disco with her hatred of Virgos,” Irish pop sensation CMAT’s playful new tune is a wry nod to her compulsive romantic decisions. “My mental health is banking on my chastity / and you’re bad for me” she jests over buoyant melodies, gently resisting the urge to circle back and repeat the same pattern of behaviour in her previous relationships. I’m so excited to hear CMAT’s debut album, If My Wife New I’d Be Dead, which is set for release via AWAL Recordings on 25th February 2022 (KC)

 

Track Of The Day: Queen Cult – ‘Show & Tell’

Following acclaim from the likes of BBC Introducing for their debut single ‘Shindigger‘, Cheshire band Queen Cult have now shared a raging new single. Consisting of front person Maisie Johnson and bassist Leila Jacklin, as well as Brodie Carson on drums and Piers Jarvis on guitar, the band pride themselves on their LGBTQ+ identity and sharing their queer, politically-charged messages with the masses through their riotous pop-rock anthems.

Propelled by the soaring, impassioned power of Johnson’s soulful vocals, ‘Show & Tell‘ builds with a gritty, swirling energy and raw riffs to an empowered call to arms; imploring us not to turn a blind eye to the injustices rife at the hands of our government. With shades of the fierce spirit of Bang Bang Romeo, it races with a relentless, searing force, resulting in a compelling plea to come together against the forces seeking to oppress us.

Of the track, the band explain:

“’Show & Tell’ was written in such unprecedented times during the pandemic, when we were feeling the most physically and mentally tested by the world – not only from our own point of view, but everyone around us too. The song details our struggles and our perspective on the government’s response to the pandemic. Living in a small town, we watched nothing get done by the floppy haired twit. As Mary Antoinette once fed brioche to the poor…we sat hopelessly watching the news and thought, “why don’t we just eat some cake?”

‘Show & Tell’ is out now. Catch Queen Cult live at London’s Queer Off on 29th October, tickets here.

Mari Lane
@marimindles

Photo Credit: Debbie Ellis / A Supreme Shot