Predictions, they have a nasty habit of backstabbing you. After declaring your faith in a dead cert winner, they go and produce an album that sends everyone awkwardly distancing themselves (see Black Kids, Temper Trap, etc.).
So consider this column future-proofed with a disclaimer that it really isn’t our fault if said bands disappear off the face of the earth post-recommendation. That said, if we call a winner, it was definitely us first. Being the end of the year, it seems like an appropriate time to place our bets for 2010, so in no particular order here goes:
Delphic are a Manchester four piece that pay homage to their Hacienda dance roots but revitalise them with a modern, electronic sheen. It’s only a matter of time before some music journalist labels them un-Manchester and they go huge.
Debut album, Acolyte is released in January via Polydor. They’ve also been supporting techno godfathers Orbital, co-headlining the perma-chic French indie label Kitsune’s UK tour and appearing on everyone’s favourite goblin Jools Holland’s TV show.
Next up are Copy Haho, definitely the most exciting thing to come from Stonehaven, a small town near Aberdeen, Scotland. They sound a bit like Pavement and make catchy indie pop – so really something you’ve never heard before. But what makes them so endearing is the hapless uncertainty in songs like ‘Wrong Direction’ and ‘You Are My Coal Mine’, which don’t seem to deter them at all from bursting out with happy melodic choruses. They’re also playing Leeds’ mighty Brudenell Social Club tonight. Hurry up and grab a ticket.
If you’re looking for something more laid back, it doesn’t get more chilled than Washed Out. Ernest Greene’s bedroom synth-pop sounds like a Beach Boys cassette smeared with Vaseline and then played through cheap speakers. Think of blurry, sun-bleached surfer photos, and you’re not far from what Washed Out captures. Greene’s EP, appropriately called High Times, is on the shelves now.
The Drums might well be another indie band from New York, if it wasn’t for their weirdly dislocated Manchurian miserabilia, of the likes of the Smiths, that they combine with fun, energetic LA pop. What follows should have been a disaster, but instead they’ve created straightforward but infectious melodies, despite being about frustration, longing and rejection.
Their EP is called Summertime, rather inappropriate looking at the bleak grey Yorkshire landscape, but let it take you to a happy place far away, preferably somewhere with palm trees. They’re coming to the O2 Academy in Leeds next February.
Finally, Gold Panda is not the idol of a lost Chinese religion, but it is a 28-year-old London fellow named Derwin. What’s startling is the sheer range of his music. His latest EP Before has everything from sombre floating piano, glitchy techno loops and even a hip-hop style ‘aiiiright’ sample. He’s playing Fabric in London with Four Tet in January, so get on down. You got that? Now go make us proud, class of 2010.