Deers: “We are friends and we have smiles and we try to share a good time with each other” // by Paul Bridgewater
Shura: “I’m more of a monogamous songwriter” // by Maya Hambro with photography by Wunmi Onibudo
Emilie Nicolas: “It has to be personal” // by Maya Hambro with photography by Sonny Malhotra
TĀLĀ: “Opposing things make such an interesting story” // by Tamara Roper with photography by Jason Williamson
Alex G: “I’m not trying to be this bedroom guy” // by Laurence Day with photography by Sonny Malhotra 

In addition to these five acts, we've delved into the Best Fit archives of New Music coverage to once again deliver a selection of artists who are more than worthy of your attention and a firm nod to who we believe have what it takes to take their art to the next level in 2015. Words by Charlotte Krol and Rich Thane. 

A selection of the artists mentioned will perform live at Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' in January - a week of specially curated shows at London's The Lexington. Find out more.



Tei Shi

The award for stand-out pop song of the year has to go to Tei Shi's "Bassically". A simple four-note structure it may be, but the Brooklyn-based soloist soon jumps all over it with feral coos that cut through morphed 80s synths and heavy techno judder. Shi's vocals are simply unstoppable - and defiant ("is that what you want? / like the others boys? / someone you can throw /  like the other toys?") - over a composition that is unbearably sexy, smart and addictive. We simply can't wait for more. CK

Freddie Dickson

Doom-pop soloist Freddie Dickson may have just a few songs to his name but the West Londoner writes music like the emotional heavyweights: Lana Del Ray, Banks and Frank Ocean. A wide diversity indeed but Mr Dickson and his band have shown promising versatility stretching from haunting piano-based ballads ("Shut Us Down") to the recent cinematic pop of "News". (Freddie Dickson plays Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK

Tove Styrke

After three or so years away in the wilderness, most had forgotten about Tove Styrke. A runner up in the 2009 edition of Swedish Idol, Styrke's debut album - released late 2010 - fell flat and was yet another victim of standard talent show major label fodder going largely unnoticed. The record did produce one standout moment though, "Million Pieces", a co-write between Lykke Li and Shout Out Louds' Adam Olenius. It was pure pop god and led to Styrke signing to the same management company as Li and Shout Out Louds who have since reinvented Styrke as a bonafide shit kicking popstrel with a very real chance of breaking through to the ever crowded UK female pop market. Now signed with RCA, Styrke's new EP - Borderline - is a majestic collection of pop songs and has ressurected Tove as an altogether new entity. Ballsy, hook-laden and filled with atitude. RT 

Kwabs

There's no doubt about it, Kwabena Adjepong aka Kwabs is the man with the voice. A pure powerhouse, every track he's released to date hears him shatter the earth with catastrophically beautiful vocals. One such track is "Wrong Or Right", his soulful husk jetting through skittering beats and SOHN-produced glitch. We're not sure any other male soloist will make a bigger impact in the future than this South London wunderkind. CK

Laura Groves

Make no bones about it, "Pale Shadows" by Laura Groves hasn't stopped spinning since it dug into our souls back in 2013. This year has also been kind to the Bradford-born singer with "Friday" wearing needles thin and her live shows wearing us emotionally thinner. Thinking About Thinking, Groves' first solo EP (save for previous recordings as Blue Roses), is a delightful collection of autumnal and harmonic ballads that need to be fully realised live. (Laura Groves plays Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK

Get Hot

Although a collaboration between producers Jakwob and FTSE doesn't seem entirely unlikely, the results of the pairing are entirly unexpected. Like the bastard child of Andrew W.K.'s entire musical output, GET HOT is clusterfuck of styles and influences shot through with a punk rock spirit. Hard-hitting singles "Party" and "Drugs" speak for themselves - a lethal injection where hardcore meets electro. Now signed with Lucky Number and with more music to follow in 2015, it's only a matter of time before Get Hot come and gatecrash your party with their delightfully brattish sonic mastery. RT

HÆLOS

Emerging seemingly out of nowhere in October with debut cut "Dust", it took merely days before the hype wheel kicked into motion for this young London trio. With no press fanfare or label backing, HÆLOS' brand of late night future pop spoke for itself and quickly established the band as one of the most talked about new acts of Q4. Debuting on Best Fit as Song Of The Day, "Dust" went on to reach #1 on Hype Machine within days, leading Zane Lowe to pick it out as 'Next Hype' on his Radio 1 show and Souncloud plays reaching 100k+ within just a couple of weeks. Now unmasked as Arthur Delaney, Lotti and Dom Goldsmith, HÆLOS are set to play their debut live show next Spring at London's Oslo. RT

EKKAH

London/Birmingham duo EKKAH surely deserve the award for the smoothest record of the year with "Last Chance To Dance". It was quite a change from the rough-around-the-edges funk-pop of debut demo "7am", even the more refined "Figure It Out", resplendent as it is in effortless groove and insatiable hooks. The duo largely extend the feel-good factor on their recent EP of the same name, so it'll surely be party time when they hit London. (EKKAH play Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK

1987

The latest project from Stockholm born, London based songwriter and producer Victor Holmberg. Originally finding notoriety as one half of production duo Montauk - a collaboration between Holmberg and Johan Cederberg aka HNNY - 1987 sees Holmberg embrace a vast sonic palette of heavily weighted emotional pop, filled with sweeping production and an undeniable sense of melody. With writing credits under his belt for Stockholm pop acts FAYE and Sportsman, 1987 knows a thing or two about creating the perfect pop hook. But unlike previous writing credits, 1987’s material is written and sung entirely in Swedish and, instead of polarising the listener, Holmberg’s delivery and vocal tonality ignites the music with a universal charm: the results totally accessible to all. A consitently mesmerising listen. RT

Ji Nilsson

"If I didn't know better. I'd say I love you. But I've always known better. So I'll lock my heart." - Within a few simple lines, Ji Nilsson entirely encapsulated the modern day trials of trust and commitment with the charming bedroom R&B of single "Heartbreakfree". Largely unknown outside of her native Sweden, Ji has spent 2014 quietly releasing devastaingly effective pop songs that have more in common with the understated but emotional offerings of Shura than Nilsson's Swedish peers. Nilsson's gorgeously captivating voice instantly disarms whilst her charming productions - one foot in the dancefloor, one foot in the bedroom - glisten with youthful abandonment and sincerity. RT

Ryn Weaver

A star-studded writing and production team (not forgetting a couple of well placed tweets) literally threw Ryn Weaver into the limelight and turned the young singer into an overnight sensation back in June of this year. The song in question, "OctaHate", was produced by Passion Pit’s Michael Angelakos, Cashmere Cat, and Benny Blanco with Charli XCX taking co-writing credits alongside Weaver. It racked up 30,000 plays within the first 24 hours whilst the likes of Jessie Ware, How To Dress Well and Paramore's Hayley Williams evangelised on Twitter. A tough debut to follow, then. But it was second single "Promises" that really cemented Weaver as a very real contender for greatness. A joyous ode to youthful abandonment and never truly learning from your mistakes, "Promises" bristles with magic and acts as further proof that Weaver is far from just another young pop talent with good connections. She's the real deal. RT  

Hockeysmith

This is the song that kept us awake at night. That is the song that had us pressing repeat incessantly on the tube. "But Blood" by Hockeysmith was a huge development curveball from the Falmouth-based sisters; it heard all their frays of fascinating, dark ideas knot into one. Set over a thriving acid-house pulse, "But Blood" creeps over your skin, into your heart and down your spine before Georgie Hockeysmith wields her axe in an 90s shoegaze fuzz-out. Absolutely spellbinding. CK

Daniel Wilson

"Will You" by Detroit soul-man Daniel Wilson broke our hearts at the tail end of 2013 and so did "Please Dream Again". At first we thought Mr Wilson had the sole tendency to pen warm, wonderful ballads on love and loss, but then "Heartbreaker" came along in October. Okay, so it's about love again guys...but this was the track that showed off Wilson's huge lung capacity. A shuffling beat that's rhythmically reminiscent of Michael Jackson's "The Way You Make Me Feel", Wilson soars above classy piano jabs and brass blasts in pure style. Watch out for this one. CK

Jagaara

It's very early days for London sisters Jagaara and their understated, yet weighty brand of emotive pop. Quietly dropping “Faultline” on Soundcloud over the summer, the Edmondson sisters soon attracted journalists who were quick to make comparisons to the "other" sister trio: Haim. While the comparison isn't completely unfounded (there are indeed hints of the American band's funk-pop simmering beneath singer Jane's breathy husk) Jagaara are far more withdrawn and, well, much more British. (Jagaara play Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK

Febueder

Ascot teens Febueder astounded us this year with their penchant for penning quirky indie à la alt-J. Debut single"Alligator" was a baffling, brilliant concoction of distant vocals and darting metallic guitar lines that laid the foundations for more experimental numbers like "Brazillia". The trio's two EP's, Soap Carv and Lilac Lane, are some of the most exciting short-players we've heard all year. (Febueder play Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.)  CK

Alma Elste

There's no denying the remarkable pace at which Parisian soloist Alms Elste has dominated recent top spots on Hype Machine. Debut single proper "Heart Melter" does exactly what it says on the tin: breathy cries of "ooh boy", stoic piano and head-strong pop beats all melting arteries at lightning speed. She might have played her debut show in London last week but we'll be going in with all the enthusiasm we can muster in January for this exciting newcomer. (Alma Elste plays Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK

Cash+David

London duo Cash+David were a question mark for the best part of this year until they revealed themselves as songwriters Tim Ross and Liz Lawrence. This behaviour doesn't always work for acts, but it was a charming concealment for the pair who create electro-pop laced with industrial drudge and hooky melodies. We've only heard three tracks to date and in truth it's hard to pick the best, but "Pulse" must be applauded for its rather berserk concoction of Arabic hums, Balearic guitar lines and Lawrence's decidedly British burr. It's very early days, and much is still shrouded in mystery, but we're right behind this dynamic duo. CK

Oscar

Oscar writes some of the most unassuming guitar music around with deadpan vocals dragging pleasantly over scuzzy guitars and kitchen-pot drums. The nonchalance of songs like "Sometimes" sounds like he couldn't care what you think about his music, but that's all part of his charm. Think London's cooped-up, more ramshackle answer to Mac DeMarco and you're just about there. Just. (Oscar plays Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK

Nimmo

NIMMO have made a huge impression over the last 12 months with singles "Jaded" and "Others". With airplay on both BBC Radio 1 and BBC Radio 6 Music, the band look more than set for a successful 2015. Originally known asNimmo & The Gauntlets, the London group craft catchy indietronica with compelling gravitas. We can't wait to see them in their hometown this January after completing a recent tour of the UK. (Nimmo play Best Fit's 'Five Day Forecast' festival at The Lexington, London in January. Tickets / Info.) CK