Blimey. Festival season’s virtually here – and with it comes loads of opportunities to see all manner of new bands. To get a head start on who’s worth seeing this summer, here’s our pick of the up-and-coming acts playing London this May.
If you haven’t heard Darwin Deez‘s catchy scratchy lo-fi song Radar Detector, you soon will. It’s got summer festival hit written all over it. And Deez – the man behind this earworm of a track – is an intriguing character. Hailing from New York, he’s brought his straggly hair and a bunch of apparently interchangeable band members to the UK to play their minimum effort, ever-so-slightly twangy brand of indie pop. Lightweight? Perhaps. But it’s also bright, refreshing and worthy of further investigation.
See Darwin Deez at Koko on 10 May, as part of the NME Radar Tour.
The first track we heard from Chapel Club (pictured) was the uninspiring, depressing, droning Surfacing. It didn’t do them any favours when it stumbled onto the scene last year. But don’t judge this five-piece too hastily – they might be playing the long game. Witness their more recent single, O Maybe I. About 100 times better, it’s vaguely reminiscent of 90s indie-rock quartet Gene, but with darker undertones and more than a dash of Editors-like menace. If they keep moving in the right direction, they could turn into something brooding, layered and really quite special.
Catch their intriguing lyrics and full sound at The Village Underground on 27 May.
Hailing from London, Goldheart Assembly are one of those bands blessed with a surfeit of singing ability – resulting in uplifting, folky, sunshine-packed harmonies. Judging from what we’ve heard, they have a surfeit of ideas too, which they’ve thankfully resisted cramming into every song. They’re probably sick of the comparison, but think Fleet Foxes with a bit more substance down at the lower end. Check out King of Rome on their MySpace for a three-minute introduction.
Get over to King’s College on 28 May to hear these bearded wonders for yourself.
There’s a great selection of music tickets available on lastminute.com too, whether you are looking for a festival experience or a gig.