Purple Sneakers’ Guide to BIGSOUND’s Must-See Artists for 2018
BIGSOUND is once again upon us, with 2018’s festival line up boasting over 100 emerging artists all ready to show what they’re made of. From future popstars to genre-bending rappers; experimental dance music to the next generation in rock and indie bands, BIGSOUND will unleash the next crop of acts over the next three nights and it’s up to punters to try and see as many as they can to catch a glimpse of the next big thing.
Of course, with a line up that big, knowing who to see can be a bit overwhelming, so we’ve put our heads together to lock down our must-see acts for this year’s festival. Check it all out below!
Sydney singer songwriter KOTA BANKS is one of the newest signees to Nina Las Vegas’ forward thinking dance label NLV Records and has already dropped one of the best mixtapes of the year Prize. Her bright pop tracks blend a club sensibility and forward thinking production with smart lyricism and melodic earworms. The result is some seriously empowered pop and proof that BANKS is one of the genre’s brightest local stars, make sure you’re one of the few who knew about her before she blows up by checking out her showcases over the week.
Whimsical, grand and brimming with feeling, JEFFE’s electro-pop will fill you with all kinds of brooding emotion. With only a few singles under her belt the Sydneysider managed to catch the attention of No Mono and supported them on their national tour, as well as a gain the support of Triple J, landing a spot as their Unearthed Feature Artist. Her ear for left of centre arrangement, spacious exploration of emotion and live performance that may even include a saxophone, JEFFE’s Bigsound sets are not to be missed.
KIRARA may have multiple award winning albums and EPs under her belt, but her live performances are where she truly shines. Inspired by the sounds of house, EDM, footwork and chiptune from a Korean club perspective, the producer and visual artist creates an intricate feast for the eyes as well as the ears in each live performance. Stuttering samples, infinite loops and bright graphics all come to life with the help of drum machines and launch pads, with her enthusiasm and optimism being the cherry on top of KIRARA audiovisual showcases.
In a year that has been overflowing with bright, fresh and intriguing new hip-hop acts, KWAME is already preparing to top the throne. Ever since ‘WOW’ dropped earlier this year, Kwame has been relentless in giving us diverse flows that truly demonstrate every facet of his talent. He has the energy of Andre 3000, the versatility of Azealia Banks and the conviction of A$AP Rocky, but Kwame wraps it all up in a package that is bursting with fun.
The future is here, and it sounds like EILISH GILLIGAN. Not only is her songwriting flowing with wonder and anchored in vulnerability, but also her angelic voice is one that runs through your very being. Her lyrics are undeniably honest yet vivid, as she takes even our smallest, deep-seeded emotions and projects them back at us beautifully.
CXLOE is one of those artists that completely captivate you on first listen. With a voice that she uses to waltz elegantly around brooding synths and ominous beats, CXLOE pulls you in and doesn’t let you go. But that’s okay – by the time you’re enveloped in her stunning wonderland of dark alt-pop, you won’t want to let go either.
Self-expression has always been a centre-piece of pop music, but never quite in the same vein as what Sydney artist HANDSOME is working in. Complete and utter acceptance and love is her message, not only for herself but for you as well, and her music is some of the most genuine and authentic pop to come out of Australia in recent memory. From ‘Late Night Ball Game’ to more recently, ‘No Cowards’, its all about unashamed self-acceptance and self-love for exactly as you are, with particular emphasis on the greater LGBTIQ+ community. HANDSOME is like a warm hug telling you everything’s going to be alright, and if that doesn’t sound like the most wholesome and feel-good showcase of the week, I don’t know what is.
Coming into BIGSOUND, there’s been one name that continues to bust through the noise with a quality over quantity approach and an undeniable knack to make your soul feel good, and that name is KAIIT. The Melbourne artist has to be one of this year’s most hyped acts, and for very good reason. Her songs make you feel like you’re home, and even if she’s rapping about a break up, she still remains grounded, honest and soulful, giving you a chance to step into her world. Tipped to make 2018 her own, she’s making serious waves by being herself and in a time where rappers are all vying for the spotlight, her approach makes her stand out in a refreshing and brilliant way. We can’t wait!
If you’re like me, after a day of meetings, coffees and schmoozing, you probably will feel like really letting go and diving deep into another world. You’ll really want a fresh experience, all-encompassing and hypnotising, almost hedonistic and definitely intoxicating. You’ll want a wall of sound to wash over you to completely let yourself go to “the other side”, ritualistic in its chants and propulsive, thumping beats, experimental and enthralling all at once. Well, if this sounds like you, you’ll be wanting to catch Kult Kyss, who are seriously on the verge of breaking through and doing something entirely their own.
Atlas Franklin Alexander
Bell City Square
Between You & Me
Divide and Dissolve
East Brunswick All Girls Choir
Eliza And The Delusionals
EWAH & The Vision of Paradise
imbi the girl
Not A Boys Name
Psychedelic Porn Crumpets
The Beautiful Monument
The Little Lord Street Band
The Moving Stills
A. Swayze & The Ghosts
Eat Your Heart Out
Hobsons Bay Coast Guard
James Wright Trio
Rachel Maria Cox
4-7 SEPTEMBER, 2018
FORTITUDE VALLEY, BRISBANE