It’s 2023, and we’re previewing all of the music, movies and television that we’re excited about this year with a series of lists. So far, we’ve also published our Most Anticipated TV Shows list — and look out for more roundups this week.
There are rising artists, and then there are rising artists that we can’t get enough of, to the point that we wonder, “Where have you been all our lives?” Each year, a handful of musicians become deserving household names — last year, we placed bets on artists who continue to swirl around 2023 festival lineups, like Wet Leg, Yard Act, and PinkPantheress.
The road to becoming a top-tier artist is more complicated than ever, but here are 15 artists, listed in alphabetical order, that we feel are poised to make that jump. Remember these names — they’ll likely be headlining festivals and tours left and right someday soon.
Canadian indie pop duo Babygirl are in search of classics. Their stellar 2021 EP Losers Weepers featured some undeniable sad bangers, especially focus track “Nevermind.” Where they usually turn inward and mine their most introspective feelings for moody tracks, “Nevermind” brought a much needed dose of fuzz and energy, and the EP’s corresponding songs followed suit. Vocalist Kiki Frances has a knack for writing powerful, resonant, and occasionally funny lyrics, always carefully composed and wistfully sung. With new music on the way, Babygirl are ready for their biggest year yet. — Paolo Ragusa
Biig Piig’s strengths show in her evolution as an artist. The Irish singer and songwriter juxtaposed her delicate voice with a funky, rousing groove on 2020’s “Feels Right,” but on her 2021 EP The Sky Is Bleeding, she twisted her sound into something more unpredictable and stylized. With multiple impressive collaborations now under her belt and her tendency to swap back and forth between English and Spanish, Biig Piig’s debut mixtape Bubblegum (arriving this Friday, January 20th) is sure to be yet another expansive and infectious statement from Biig Piig. — P.R.
Last year, singer-songwriter Sabrina Teitelbaum dropped her first four singles as Blondshell. With replayable songs like the low-key, hypnotic “Olympus” and the thrilling “Veronica Mars,” her strong voice and engaging writing were immediately apparent and very, very welcome. Luckily, she’s not planning on keeping fans waiting too long for more of her story-driven, expertly crafted indie rock. Her debut album is slotted for this year, and it won’t be one to miss. — Jonah Krueger
Oozing with charisma, British R&B trio FLO is putting a modern spin on the pop-oriented perfection of groups like Destiny’s Child. Breaking out in 2022 with their debut single “Cardboard Box,” FLO burst onto the scene with attitude, tight harmonies, and irresistible hooks (“I’ma put your shit in a cardboard box”). Members Jorja Douglas, Stella Quaresma, and Renée Downer now have an EP’s worth under their belt, and with BBC Radio 1 crowning them “The Sound of 2023,” there’s no indication they’ll slow down any time soon. — J.K.
Following a stellar run opening for Harry Styles in Austin in fall 2022, Gabriels frontman Jacob Lusk told Consequence, “I felt so lucky to be there. When I came out during ‘Cinema,’ you would’ve thought a real star was coming out.” Lusk is, in fact, well on his way to inhabiting the title of a “real star” who can step onto the stage with Styles — a fantastic 2022 album, Angels & Queens – Part 1, is a great starting point for anyone curious about the three-piece act. Lusk’s voice is rich and timeless, and the band’s sound feels like a bridge between nostalgic and modern sounds. — Mary Siroky
After going viral in Spring 2022 with the subsequently Grammy-nominated “F.N.F. (Let’s Go),” GloRilla’s Cardi B-assisted “Tomorrow 2” earned the rapper her first Top 10 hit. However, Big Glo’s star is still rising: the Memphis breakout’s infectious energy will be put on display during her first headlining tour and she still hasn’t released a full-length album yet. — Eddie Fu
With a viral hit in tow, Hemlocke Springs is already enjoying a dream start to 2023. The North Carolina-based singer and songwriter burst on the scene late last year with “girlfriend,” a synth pop gem that found fans in Grimes, Remi Wolf, Steve Lacy, and thousands of TikTok scrollers. With only three songs out, she’s incited a major bidding war from multiple labels, and though a formal release isn’t confirmed, the singer mentioned she’d like to have an album (or an EP) out by April. Time will tell, but for now, it’s safe to say that many of us still have “girlfriend” playing on repeat. — P.R.
Singer-songwriter Holly Humberstone earned herself an enormous new audience of fans as an opener for Olivia Rodrigo’s sold-out “SOUR Tour.” Toss in a tender, evocative fall EP (Can You Afford to Lose Me?) and a grounded persona and it becomes very easy to envision Humberstone stepping into the role of headliner in 2023. — M. Siroky
This 23-year-old Bronx rapper seemed like the next breakout star of New York drill when “Munch (Feelin’ You)” went viral, but with her follow-up hit, “Bikini Bottom,” the artist born Isis Gaston showed that drill is too narrow to contain her ambitions. If 2023 goes according to plan — and that’s no small if — you might be hearing her name in the same breath as Nicki, Cardi, and Meg. — Wren Graves
Scottish singer and songwriter Joesef has been steadily building his catalog for a few years now, but the release of his debut album Permanent Damage (out now) is his biggest showcase yet. Joesef’s music lives in a fascinating grey area between R&B, soul, indie pop, and alternative rock — but at the center of it all is his rich, versatile tenor. There’s simply no one that sounds like Joesef, and his songs are tailor made for both a rainy Sunday morning and a groovy night out. His 2020 single “Does It Make You Feel Good?” as well as Permanent Damage single “Just Come Home With Me Tonight” are perfect places to start for a Joesef sampler. — P.R.
Viral hit “Don’t Play with It” made Lola Brooke a name to watch in the New York drill scene, but check out her Fire in the Booth and Funkmaster Flex freestyles to get a better understanding of the fiery flow and attitude that make her such a force to be reckoned with. Now signed to Arista Records, the diminutive dynamo is poised to take over 2023. — E.F.
Meet Me @ the Altar
Pop punk trio and former Consequence Artist of the Month Meet Me @ the Altar signed to Fueled By Ramen in 2020 and broke out in 2021 with their Model Citizen EP. That’s steps one and two on their four-step plan, and now all that’s left is 3) a debut album and 4) global domination. With hooks this catchy and an attitude this funky and fun, they won’t accept anything less. Look out for their debut full-length this year. — W.G.
If we had to put our money on one K-pop group poised to break into the global market next, we’d bet on NewJeans. The refreshing young act out of ADOR and HYBE have a small but currently skipless discography, and are rounding out their brand with addictive choreography and an easygoing team dynamic. The hype around the “Hype Boy” singers only continues to grow with each new release. — M. Siroky
Nigerian singer Tems grabbed the attention of movie fans everywhere when her stunning cover of “No Woman, No Cry” soundtracked the Black Panther: Wakanda Forever trailer. The newfound recognition helped fuel the popularity of her slow-burning hit “Free Mind,” giving her much-deserved spotlight after lending her voice — and pen — to big names like Drake, Beyoncé, and Rihanna. — E.F.
Fronted by former Joanna Gruesome members Owen ‘O’ Williams and George ‘GN’ Nicholls, The Tubs offer up jangle, pop sensibilities, and quite a bit of fun with their brand of British post-punk. Their full-length debut Dead Meat is mere weeks away (out Friday, January 27th), and if singles “Sniveller” and “Dead Meat” are anything to go by, indie rock fans have quite a bit to look forward to. — J.K.
This was originally published on “consequence.net”