Next Up: 10 exciting new artists to watch in 2023
16 January 2023, 17:17 | Updated: 17 January 2023, 17:06
New year, new music!
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Every year the music gods bless us with us new artists to obsess over. Over the past few years alone, we've seen musicians like Olivia Rodrigo and Lil Nas X take over the industry and become household names. Not to mention, stars like Ashnikko and PinkPantheress have captured the world's attention with their own boundary-pushing pop. Who's next though?
2023 may have only just begun but there are already new artists who are making waves and releasing songs that suggest that they will be music's next big thing. With that in mind, we wanted to shine a light on 10 artists who we think you should be keeping an eye on and adding to your playlists. These are the artists who are set to release great music in 2023 and who will undoubtedly be popping up in our Spotify Wrapped lists at the end of the year.
So, without further ado, here are PopBuzz's Next Up artists for 2023 in alphabetical order.
Who? 17-year-old singer-songwriter who started making music to avoid copyright strikes on his Fortnite videos and now has everyone’s FYP in a chokehold.
Standout track? 'Romantic Homicide'
Sounds like? Your favourite indie film soundtrack.
For fans of? King Krule, Beach Fossils, Mac DeMarco
In their own words: Speaking to NME about being a Black artist navigating the indie-sphere, d4vd said: "The amount of DMs I get from people saying, ‘I thought you were white’… it’s so funny to me! And I like it, because it’s like I’m taking a spin on the stigma about what African-American creators’ music should be, and how it should be perceived, and what they should be making." (NME)
Who? World-class girl group who've only just scratched the surface of what they're capable of as a band.
Standout track? 'Cardboard Box'
Sounds like? Exquisite harmony-led R&B pop that combines US perfectionism with a UK edge.
For fans of? Destiny's Child, Sugababes, Brandy
In their own words: Discussing the message behind FLO's music, Renée said: "I’m a very firm believer in like, ‘Yes, I love you, but if you leave me tomorrow I’m gonna find a way to pick myself up.’ I hope anybody who hears our music gets that message, especially young Black girls like us. Whatever you’re going through, you’re going to get through it, you’re going to slay it, you’re gonna be a bad bitch. Period!" (NME)
Who? Scottish-born former paralegal turned musician who is also heading off to clown school. Make of that what you will.
Standout track? ‘Good Morning’
Sounds like? Unlike any other pop artist out there right now.
For fans of? Prince, Talking Heads, Janelle Monáe
In their own words: Speaking about the inspiration behind ‘Good Morning’, Kaeto says: "This song, in particular, stemmed from feeling ridiculously uncomfortable in myself and my attempts to record music. I often feel quite embarrassed just to exist, so any position of responsibility or creativity can make my most uncertain inner voice come to life. I’ve often been told to give these negative assertions a name and so the song felt as though it was a manifestation of this process. In order to do this, and address some of those ill feelings about myself, I developed a character that I felt personified them. I hoped that in doing so, and seeing how ridiculous these things sounded out loud might enable me to dispel them.."
Who? Australian singer-songwriter writing off-kilter pop rock anthems for the next generation.
Standout track? 'Do It'
Sounds like? Exactly what you’d want to hear on a sunny afternoon at Reading Festival.
For fans of? Olivia Rodrigo, Halsey, The Veronicas
In their own words: Speaking about their debut EP, Hallie said: "'This is Love' touches on being in love, falling out of love, feeling heartbreak and then finding yourself again and exploring connections, specifically queer ones, with a newfound perspective. It’s basically a condensed journal entry from a year of my life." (Notion)
Who? Five girls who are already dominating the charts and changing the sound and aesthetic of K-Pop one song and video at a time.
Standout track? 'Ditto'
Sounds like? Irresistible Y2K-inspired pop songs that you won't be able to get out of your head.
For fans of? LE SSERAFIM, Britney Spears, Hikaru Utada
In their own words: Explaining what they want NewJeans to be known as, Danielle said: "A group that is always honest, and, always putting in effort. I hope people can think of us as their friends. Someone close who you can relate to." (Rolling Stone)
6) Olivia Dean
Who? London-born singer and musician who is putting soul back into pop music.
Standout track? ‘Be My Own Boyfriend’
Sounds like? An escape from *gestures at everything*.
For fans of? Jorja Smith, Erykah Badu, Arlo Parks
In their own words: Speaking about her songwriting process, Olivia said: "I think of myself as a songwriter, because I see the world from the view of a songwriter. The other day, someone said to me it’s like my brain’s a sieve and the world’s going in. I’m the sieve that’s like: ‘That’s a song and that’s a lyric’. So that’s how I think of myself, just waddling through life as a little songwriting sieve." (NME)
7) piri & tommy
Who? Gen-Z duo combining blunt lyrics and nonchalant vocals with forward-thinking production.
Standout track? 'on & on'
Sounds like? Everything you want garage music to sound like in 2023 and more.
For fans of? PinkPantheress, Charli XCX, Shygirl
In their own words: Discussing their first writing session, Tommy said: "It was definitely that dance vibe straightaway. I was like, ‘Man, this is straight up the most ethereal vibes’. It sounded like Fleetwood Mac house!" Piri then added: "Yeah, it just kind of worked, literally from the go." (DIY)
8) Rachel Chinouriri
Who? British singer-songwriter with the ability to capture a million emotions in a single lyric.
Standout track? 'All I Ever Asked'
Sounds like? A bittersweet supercut in a coming-of-age movie.
For fans of? Regina Spektor, Arlo Parks, Phoebe Bridgers
In their own words: Discussing her goals with her debut album, Rachel said: "I want my first album to be the most honest thing about me, and to showcase my songwriting, because my priority is being a great writer." (Rolling Stone UK)
9) Rose Gray
Who? Charismatic rising star who mixes the spirit of rave culture with big pop hooks and buckets of personality.
Standout track? 'Cupid'
Sounds like? If Dusty Springfield had an underground era in the 90s.
For fans of? Saint Etienne, The Cardigans, Kylie Minogue
In their own words: Explaining the inspiration behind her music, Rose said: "I have this one friend who, honestly, I believe she’s like the gatekeeper to like the queer underground scene, she hosts these amazing parties. I feel really lucky that she’s my friend because I’ve learned so much from her about what’s happening in London, what people are musically listening to and loving. I feel quite informed, and I feel like I’ve captured stuff that is happening – not necessarily in commercial clubs, but the underground fun parties and stuff – in my music." (The Face)
Who? 21-year-old star whose unique fusion of pop, R&B and South African amapiano music has got everyone talking.
Standout track? 'To Last'
Sounds like? A global superstar-in-waiting.
For fans of? Jorja Smith, FKA Twigs, SZA
In their own words: Speaking about how they write songs, Tyla revealed: "I write based on personal experiences, but also how I imagine I would be feeling if I was in different situations and a different type of person. I enjoy putting myself in other people’s shoes and writing deep songs in a more fun and light-hearted way…I find it easier to play a character than actually let out what's going on." (i-D)
Tyla will release her new single 'Been Thinkin'' on January 27th. Produced by Tricky Stewart, who has previously worked with the likes of Beyoncé ('Break My Soul') and Rihanna ('Umbrella'), 'Been Thinkin'' is an instant classic and it looks set to take Tyla's career to a whole new level.