In March, we went on the lookout for the best unsigned talent in the local area. The quality of the entrants was high across the board, but we had to whittle them down to our ten favourite unsigned artists.
Without further ado and in no particular order, here is some of the best unsigned talent in Southampton.
A frighteningly young two-piece rock/blues band who have already headlined The Joiners, The Talking Heads and Guava. They recently impressed at the Talking Heads Battle of the Bands competition. See them at one of their many gigs in and around Portsmouth over the coming months.
England Road play the kind of testosterone-fuelled rock that fans of both Oasis and Arctic Monkeys will be familiar with. They were also the youngest band in history to headline The Joiners, with an average age of 15. They will be playing the Southern England Area Final of Live and Unsigned UK competition on the 26th May and play The Cellar June 1st.
Dance Barry Dance describe themselves as one of Southampton’s premier”pop-punk-comedy” bands, or what it would sound like “if Frank Turner accidentally picked up Tim Minchin’s sheet music before a gig” and it’s hard to disagree. Here is a jaunty ditty about a nan.
Winchester-based band The Redundants sound like a plugged in version of Ed Sheeran, and far more interesting. They are currently seeking management and are gigging in the local area over the coming months. ‘Time and Money’ is a soulful track, that showcases the band’s musical talent and lyrical ability.
Rob and The Liar is, in fact, composed of two separate and distinct Robs. While which one is the liar remains unclear, there is a charming honesty to their music. The pair will be familiar to frequenters of open mic nights across Southampton.
One of the most recently formed bands on this list, they claim that they formed in November 2011 and spent “a solid 3 months coming up with a decent name”. Since being named, though, they have won a Battle of the Bands competition at the Talking Heads.
Jason Nolan’s music sounds like what would happen if James Blake started playing keys for Patrick Wolf. ‘Shilly-Shallying’ is an engaging and understated modern pop song with its roots planted in hip-hop and dubstep.
The futuristically-named #Tags offer pure, unadulterated pop music, and have been known to cover a few pop classics in their time, such as George Michael’s ‘Careless Whisper’. The band also clearly understand and appreciate the power of facial hair, which is a bonus.