Tips For 2014 #1 - Alice Boman

Welcome to the start of my 'list' posts. Following from yesterdays Blog Sound shortlist. It's December so I figure I'm allowed... I'm a geek and statto and I bloody love lists even if I know not everyone does, I've read some tips (and albums, which I'll be concentrating on next week) I agree with and some I don't, that's the nature of the beast...

Over the past couple of years I've always featured a recap of the acts I picked the year before but this year I've decided not to do the same. There are a few reasons, duplication, time and a desire to just look forward with my 'tips'. For those of you interested I'll list my thirteen acts for 2013 next. Alice Jemima, Bird, Daughter, Embers, Emily and the Woods, Fear of Men, Haim, Let's Buy Happiness, Novella, Pins, Savages, SeaWitches & September Girls. Altogether a mixed bag of results occurred.

For 2014 I've decided to just do ten tips which is a few less than the previous couple of years. My tips aren't who'll sell the most albums or who'll be Drowned in Sound's favourite act of the year, simply ten acts/artists that I think are likely to produce some of the best music in 2014. To avoid complete duplication with last years acts (I could easily feature the nine artists that never released their debut in 2013 again) I've taken the decision to exclude previous tips rather than simply repeat them again. So of course I still bloody love Embers and think they'll produce an incredible record but they won't feature on this list. The same can be said for September Girls, Novella etc etc.

The only other criteria for inclusion is my own personal taste. Anyway, less waffle, more music and onwards with tip one (the other nine will follow at a rate of two a day in alphabetical order), the incredible Alice Boman...

Alice Boman was a discovery half way through the year just as summer was coming to the boil and I was posting summery, fuzzy indie-pop. Her intimate whispers and delicate piano sparkles are anything but that and perfect to reach for now as we're all wrapped in blankets to keep away the chill.

My introduction to Alice was probably the same as yours, a track so good that it will make you stop what you are doing and give it your full attention, "Waiting". Easily one of the best tracks of the year and one with the most devastating opening line; "I want you more than I need you, I need you so bad"... Taken from Alice's debut EP Skisser, recorded in her Malmö bedroom with the resultant five tracks (six on the following vinyl release) excelling in a natural sense of fragile, stark beauty that shimmer with a frosty chill that touch at emotions seldom touched. "Skiss 8" comes close to matching "Waiting" too with its repeated cries of "I've been looking for you, been looking for you, all over"..

I later caught Alice live at Servants Jazz Quarters where she found the venues piano perfectly suiting to her needs and played a short but spine-tingling performance that made the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end, a few new tracks hinted at future brilliance and I'm sure I'm not alone in the queue to hear more.

Skisser is available now on 10" vinyl via Adrian Recordings.