Len Faki & Juxta Position - 'Superstition' (Azid Mix)

What works so well is the track's care and minimalism; it's quite content driving forward with bare loops before giving way to fresh lines of delayed hi-hats and squiggly 303 synths, a damn fine slice of acid techno. - Kieran Devlin


CHAI - 'Fashionista'

CHAI have grown tired of the kawaii box placed around them. True, their irrepressible sweetness has worked wonders for them, but they're ready for more. Naturally, they haven't lost an ounce of their positivity and wondrously joyful outlook, but it sounds like we can expect some resistance from the tidy niche we've collectively placed them in. - Chase McMullen


Martha - 'Love Keeps Kicking'

The track comes out swinging with a twanging guitar lead, diving us straight into a verse full of self-doubt and confusion ("I need a pain interpreter to decipher your midnight texts... sometimes I feel so empty I just want to leave it all"). Regardless, this is all swept aside in the gung-ho admission of the chorus, "love keeps kicking," delivered with power-pop gang vocals making it an instantaneous earworm. Martha soon dive back into more painful memories, and while the full message is "love keeps kicking the shit out of me," the hook is so big and punchy that the residual feeling is that love is worth searching out again and again - even if it is going to deal you continuous body blows each time. - Rob Hakimian


Stella Donnelly - 'Lunch'

'Lunch' does see her return to a more stripped-down sound as on her EP Mechanical Bull, but the subtle string adornments and fluttering keyboard melodies massively help to wring out the sharp emotions in the track. It also helps that Donnelly has a crystalline voice, which pierces your attention, and here she uses it to fully mine the depths of her dejection. Inspired by a whirlwind couple of years that have seen her travel all over the world, 'Lunch' sees her contemplating the little time she has to catch up with her loved ones before she has to jet off again, leading to the heartbreaking admission "I get homesick before I go away." - Rob Hakimian


Josin - 'Healing'

We vouched for Josin in our Ones To Watch for 2019. We still stand by our word and expect big things to come from her this year. With an otherworldly voice and a sensitivity to orchestrate melodies with touching lyrics, she holds the three ingredients to a radiant future. ‘Healing’ from her debut In The Blank Space is an example of dwelling emotion and sheer beauty one cannot remain indifferent to.. - Francisco Gonçalves Silva


Trudy and the Romance - 'The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen'

In reading that list of influences and styles, you might think that Trudy and the Romance have bitten off more than they can chew, but years of solidifying their compositional and playing credentials truly pays off when you press play on 'The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen'. Olly Taylor's voice is sopping with emotional weight, and he directs this into vivid metaphorical imagery of love, loss and dreams of escape. Backed by 50s-style rhythms, punched through with brass, 'The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen' conjures a perfect fantasy world where the power of romance truly does have the ability to lift you off your feet and into a magical spell that you could only find in movies. On 'The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen', Trudy and the Romance prove to be intrepid voyagers into a world where dazzling music and romantic storytelling combine - and just by listening they'll take you along with them. - Rob Hakimian


Octo Octa - 'I Need You'

As gracefully patterned as it is warmly open-hearted, Octo Octa's tribute to the uplift of meaningful friendships is house returning to its roots, the crisp breakbeats and dulcet vocal samples purveying a hug of communality. - Kieran Devlin


Julia Jacklin - 'Pressure To Party'

Jacklin is no stranger to rocking out, but this is the most fiery we've heard her on the new material, and it truly does come imbued with a feeling of "everyone just fuck off and leave me alone... love you really." - Rob Hakimian


Heather Woods Broderick - 'Where I Lay'

Adhering to the meditative idea she's looking to express, 'Where I Lay' begins as a serene synth piece, with Broderick sing-speaking in beautiful images. But, just as you're lulled into Broderick's sway, 'Where I Lay' explodes in a cathartic rock song, instantly conjuring images of grand landscapes and even bigger dreams. Broderick's poetry remains intact, emboldened by the booming percussion and chorus of angelic voices that sweep into the dramatic arrangement. - Rob Hakimian


Honourable Mentions