Reading time: 5min.

by Graham Peters

Virgin Virtuosos #3: The Lonely Together, Lianne La Havas and Twenty-One Pilots

We bring you three underheard artists who we think have the potential to make it big. For everything from the complete unknowns to the just-about-to-blows, take note.

The unknown: The Lonely Together

This dreampop indie band from Scotland came onto the scene in 2013 with their self-titled debut album. The group’s electronic rock single ‘A Million Summers’ fits neatly into the niche Gary Lightbuddy and Co. carved for themselves a number of years back. With breathy vocals and intricately layered instrumentation they manage to create a dense, broad soundscape that makes for quality listening. If you’re a Snow Patrol fan, you’ll love these guys.

A Million Summers captures feel over function perfectly. The lyrics might leave a little to be desired, but it’s not really about the lyrics. Just enjoy the sensation.

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The criminally underheard: Lianne La Havas

The twenty-six year old songstress from London released her debut studio album ‘Is Your Love Big Enough?’ with the title track of the same name, in July 2012, to much fanfare from critics, but surprisingly the public hasn’t taken similar notice. Her quirky writing style shows a flair for the original, while her soulful, playful voice, showcased below in her live performance of ‘Age’, on Jools Holland, juxtaposes lyrical maturity that songwriters twice her age might be jealous of. A total gem.

La Havas’ cheeky tune takes a twangy guitar track and a flawless voice, to do minimalism right. It’s subtle, sharp and original, and the live performance sounds every bit as good as the album version.

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The just about to blow: Twenty-One Pilots

The electronic duo from Columbus Ohio recently managed to get themselves on the scoresheet for the movie Suicide Squad, with their dark, bassy track ‘Heathens’, but that’s only one side of their multifaceted image. ‘Judge’, by comparison, drops the gritty tone and instead takes a ukelele intro in the style of Jason Mraz, then breaks it into a rolling summer chorus with something for every taste from ska to hip-hop. It’s definitely been done before, but the fact that these guys can create so many different flavours gives us hope that they have the skill to grow into something really great.

This track should be feel good in every sense of the word: it’s upbeat, it’s rhythmic and it ebbs and flows with all the finesse dancing music requires. But listen harder. The lyrics tell a different story.

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We’ll be back in two weeks time with more tracks. In the meantime, subscribe to our newsletter for all the latest.