An alliance of underrated artists
Indeed, it’s flipping a coin, but we don’t mind, we asked reliable sources. 10 promoters selected 1 promising artist for 2019. So here you have a list to look forward to, because we prefer to face the future than to look back too much. Do you have more tips? Share them with us, who knows they might appear in your favourite calendar sometime soon!
Thomas Konings – Botanique
There isn’t a lot of music out there that sounds like Laura Les’ playful, eclectic and very 2010 take on pop. The Chicago producer and songwriter, formerly called Osno1, mixes in a messy yet effortless way every SoundCloud genre you know — from bubbly PC Music inspired trash pop to trappy auto-tuned emo rap.
Gilke Vanuytsel – Beursschouwburg
I bet on Bad Woman Céline Gillain to make it in 2019. She’s a true performer, her live shows are a one-woman show with catchy pop songs, leftfield techno and spoken word in a non-conformist way. With smart lyrics, Céline doesn’t seem to care about hype nor image.
Wouter Vanhaelemeesch – Vooruit
Forecasts are a tricky bunch. It’s near impossible to predict who’s gonna be picked up by the fickle masses and who will get wrongfully ignored, so I’ll cheat and pick someone who just SHOULD be on everybody’s radar as far as I’m concerned. I know very little about Céline Gillain, just that she’s Brussels based and works as a visual & performance artist next to making music. A friend tipped me to check out her recent album ‘Bad Woman’, which is a near perfect slab of experimental pop electronic music. Channeling proto-house melodies and weirdo, abstract lyrics into something remarkably fresh and current, I’ve been spinning this non-stop the last month and hope to be able and catch her live somewhere soon.
Gilles Helsen – STUK
Congo-born, Louvain-raised, London-based: the versatile producer, DJ and NON-founder NKISI is no longer a stranger to the Subba public. Her up-tempo afro-doom is laced with Congolese rhythms and redefines the position of the black artist on the dance floor. Looking forward to her first full album 7 Directions that will appear on UIQ on January 18, 2019.
Otis Dehaes – Slagwerk
djb is the alter-ego of Thomas De Rijk, a producer and graphic designer from Amsterdam. We met Thomas few years ago when he played at Slagwerk under his former alias Halp. While working on commissions (for Adult Swim etc.), he didn’t release much music over the past years. Until last month when he uploaded a new single, announcing his first album coming out in 2019 (on a very exciting label).
David Tricot Mizero – curator dj under the alias DTM FUNK
I have been a fan of him since 2014 but only now do I dare to bet my money on Vincent Paolo, an Amsterdam producer, DJ, sound designer and Red Light Radio resident who really surprised me last year with his track ‘Dogtooth’. I have known Vincent for several years but 2019 is his year. Not only is he moving to Antwerp in the middle of January, he’s also releasing his first official debut EP Glow / Guidance on Carista’s United Identities label. It’ll be a mix of film music & club music. Let’s call it cinematic club music.
LaBoK – Lait de Coco Music
I was 25 years old when I moved to Belgium, bitterly leaving behind an irrelevant cultural landscape I couldn’t change. Meeting JeuneClyde was a wake-up call for me and when MIMI entered our lives, that was the first step towards what we are today: a family, a club night, a music label. Every day I’m grateful to be here with them, watching how we support each other’s sounds or how we evolve as one straightforward spirit. Welcome 2019, we are Lait de Coco. You will hear from us soon.
Rrita Jashari – VK Concerts
I stumbled upon Kelman Duran playing at Boiler Room LA a couple of months ago. I didn’t save the video and I totally forgot about him. A couple of weeks ago I was looking for new songs while preparing a DJ-set, and found this raw, crazy reggaeton song. It was the kind of song that you play on repeat for days. When I found out it was the same guy from the Boiler Room set, I started digging deeper into the artist and his universe. Kelman decomposes Afro-Caribbean rhythms and genres like reggaeton and dancehall, but also hip hop and trap. He adds his own space, time and atmosphere to those genres, through ambient, dramatical soundscapes, raw drum loops, great vocal samples and acapellas, political quotes, … I mostly love the way he uses references from club and dance floor bangers and manages to deconstruct, cut-and-paste and rearrange them into personal, textured, dreamy and emotional pieces – all this while adding metaphors and messages about social issues today or daily human emotions like love and loneliness. I’m definitely waiting to hear more of his music and hope he blows up in 2019!
Souria Cheurfi – Psst Mademoiselle
I discovered Martha Da’Ro thanks to her acoustic performance on Tarmac and I was immediately moved by her pure, fragile voice. Then she surprised me again by reaching super low notes like a deep soul singer. I have no doubt we will hear a lot about her in 2019, as soon as she releases her first ep.
Astrid Desterck – AB
Her sound is reminiscent of Lotic, Coucou Chloe and Laurel Halo. Lafawndah will release her debut album Ancestor Boy in 2019. Expectations are high, since she immediately caught eye with her first EP Tan. Her songs were used in advertisements for Kenzo. Last year she made the beautiful ‘Le Renard Bleu’ together with Midori Takada.