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Noor Ashikin Abdul Rahman
Friday, Nov 7, 2014

Showbiz

Girls who rule the indie world

The New Paper | Noor Ashikin Abdul Rahman | Friday, Nov 7, 2014

New Zealand songstress Kimbra Johnson.

There are the queens of mainstream music like Beyonce, Ariana Grande, Iggy Azalea and Nicki Minaj.

Then there are these women. Call them "indie" if you want, but these female artists are proving to be hot, hot, hot this year.

KIMBRA

This 24-year-old rose to prominence when she lent her vocals to Gotye's 2012 hit, Somebody That I Used To Know.

That Grammy-winning song sold over 13 million copies worldwide, but while Gotye has faded into obscurity, Kimbra (left) is coming to the fore. Her critically acclaimed second album The Golden Echo, which was released in August, is a mix of pop with dashes of jazz, hip hop and even disco and it features collaborations with artists like John Legend, Muse's Matt Bellamy, bassist Thundercat and Silverchair's Daniel Johns.

But most of all, it is Kimbra's gem of a voice that makes The Golden Echo a validation of why she is one of music's golden greats.

JESSIE WARE

With her debut release Devotion in 2012, this English singer-songwriter was hailed as "the new queen of the Brits" and "the missing link between Sade and Adele".

Big praise, and she deserves it.

Ware (top), 30, offers a mix of raw emotion and soul, evident in her second album, Tough Love.

Released last month, it sees her teaming up with Miguel, Ed Sheeran and Dev Hynes (aka Blood Orange).

Although Ware insists her latest offering is "less sad" than her debut, it is full of tear-jerkers.

Not a bad thing. Just ask Adele.

Heartbreak has made the career of many music greats.

FKA TWIGS

Yes, she's happily dating Twilight star Robert Pattinson, but there is more to this enigmatic singer than a famous BF.

Born Tahliah Debrett Barnett, the 26-year-old English artist of Jamaican-Spanish descent has charmed critics and fans with her debut album, LP1.

Barnett's status is such that many were amazed when, despite being the hot favourite to win, she lost out on this year's Barclaycard Mercury Prize to Scottish hip-hop trio Young Fathers.

The fascination with her continues to grow, but she has been hard to describe and so far, she has been labelled "The Weeknd's little sister", "the trip-hop Sade" and "R&Bjork".

She made social media feeds last week for a controversial black-and-white clip she made for her song Video Girl.

Shortly before that, she released #throughglass, an impressive self-directed short film to promote Google Glass, which sees her executing equally impressive choreography.

She straddles that fine line between pop star and performance artist.

What else will she surprise us with? We just have to wait and see.

BANKS

US singer Jillian Banks (left) captivated many fans this year with her debut album Goddess.

"Goddess-like" is quite an apt description for both this pretty-faced singer and her arresting voice.

Goddess debuted at No. 12 on the Billboard 200 chart in September.

Banks, 26, is also one of the four faces in Coach's Coach Dreamers campaign.

FKA TWIGS & BANKS @ ST. JEROME'S LANEWAY FESTIVAL - SINGAPORE
WHEN: JAN 24
WHERE: THE MEADOW, GARDENS BY THE BAYTICKETS: $165 (STANDARD) FROM WWW.SISTIC.COM.SG OR LANEWAY.EVENTCLIQUE.COM

KIMBRA @ URBANSCAPES 2014
WHEN: DEC 6
WHERE: HORSE RANCH, RESORTS WORLD GENTING, MALAYSIA
TICKETS: From RM187 (S$72) from urbanscapes.com.my/tickets and $469 for a package for two (includes coach ride and accommodation) from www.bandwagonbus.com

ashikinr@sph.com.sg


This article was first published on Nov 5, 2014.
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