The NHC MUSIC Staff Picks For 2018 - The Bands We Think Will Go Far This Year And Beyond

So here we are then, at the expected end of year top band list thingies that everyone does, where we tell you who our team thinks will go far in 2018. The choices have been tough to whittle down, as we heard some awesome new music in the past year!

2017 has been pretty bloody good, but seriously busy too, and we expect more of the same in 2018. That’s the story of NHC MUSIC though, which will be in another article coming soon. This article is about the musicians we think will go far in 2018, so check out our choices below;

For me, this was even harder than picking my favourite bands of  2017, as there are so many talented musicians we work with at NHC that really do seem to be making some huge musical waves recently, but with the amount of great shows they have been doing, great gigs they have already done, and big news and future plans they have been dropping all over the place recently, there can only be two bands for me to choose for 2018. Like punk or hard rock? Then we have something for you!

For ear blasting punk with an arrogant (though well deserved) swagger look no further than a Scottish act with one of the best live sets I have ever seen. Ladies and gentlemen, you really need to be checking out The Heavy Drapes. They have gigged relentlessly throughout 2017, and already have a ton of cracking booking lined up for this year too. Their talent is matched only by their workload. Band to watch for 2018? Aye, and then some. Check them out here.

Prefer some face melting hard rock? Then you will love my second pick for 2018, the utterly incredible Swamp Born Assassins! These guys are another band upping their musical game with every single passing month and they really seem to be some kind of musical juggernaut, smashing it's way through 2017 with ease, and picking up new fans with every single event. One of my favourite bands period. Get them listened to here.

So that's my two picks, check out the rest of the staffers below and see who they have opted for!

- Jamie McDermid


Mention the name 'Zal Cleminson' to rock fans of a certain age, and they'll go all misty eyed and reminisce about the legendary Sensational Alex Harvey Band. Well, after ten years in retirement, Zal exploded back onto the scene just a few weeks ago, with a fantastic new band, the Sin Dogs, all new songs, and rave reviews for their first short run of gigs. I have no doubt that this band are the one to watch above all for 2018.

My other main pick for this section are Burnt Out Wreck. If AC/DC and Krokus style rock'n'roll is your thing, then this is the band for you. Led by ex Heavy Pettin' drummer and main songwriter Gary Moat, now on frontman duties, this band deliver in spades, and unlike the newly reformed HP(minus Gary), this is strictly a forward looking band, not a nostalgia trip. Don't miss them when they head back to Glasgow in a couple of months as support to Anvil.

Honourable mentions - so many great new bands out there that are improving all the time - Anchor Lane, Black King Cobra, Tantrum, Powderkeg, Last Alibi, Manifold, Stoneface, and many more - get out and see them! - Campbell Stewart


Two very different bands but these are the ones to watch in my opinion. VND have released 3 eps this year to much acclaim, and they get more impressive with each song they write. Quirky but very much grounded in real life - go check them out.

I’ve been singing Heavy Drapes praises for a good while now, but with a settle line up and a good few high profile shows under their belts I can see them going up a level next year. Their debut album will be dropping soon and will be very much worth the wait. - Martin McCann


My first choice needs to be Daryl Sperry. Not only is he a brilliant musician and a lovely guy, his work ethic and dedication is incredible! I can see him playing bigger and bigger stages. One to watch.
My second choice is the The Van Ts. They’re gaining a well-deserved fanbase and this year brought their glittering, surfy-dark-rock vibes to many festivals as well as multiple tour dates supporting The Jesus and Mary Chain. Their rocketing success is well earned. Give them a listen! - Jenny Tingle


My top tips for 2018 include Daphne Guinness. Yep the fashion muse! She has recorded an album with Tony Visconti producing. I saw her and her band (the Golden Chord) live last month. They have dropped the entire previous set and gone in a new poppier direction. Instantly memorable hooks. It’s going to be a great record.

My other choice is Lux Lisbon. 2017 was a quiet year. Just a handful of gigs in April. I hope they get back to making music again this year. Their music is difficult to pigeonhole. Check them out on YouTube as soon as you can! - George Houstoun


The Girobabies recently made a triumphant return at Stereo on the 22nd, marking a whole year without the Girobambinos! From propping bars, to dropping bars to local superstars, from Equinox to Utopia to Elysium, the Giros have went from shambling drunks playing bad punk, as in their early days, to a well-respected, talented hip-hop/punk/psychedelic/pop outfit. With three albums under their belt (including their 2016 masterpiece WTU?) and a legacy of legendary live shows around the country. I'm sure they'll be back touring regularly in 2018 (maybe even in Europe?) and with some new material too, as Mark is as prolific as they come, what with Jackal Trades also being tipped to drop a follow-up album next year to the indescribably brilliant 'Need The Characters' from 2016. So lots of exciting stuff happening in the Giro camp as always.

Also next year expect and watch out for new material from the Twistettes, who ruled 2017 playing many great shows and even a festival in South Korea, they have been receiving a lot of well-deserved attention and are about to drop their second album any time soon! One of the best bands around and certainly the best female band in Britain right now!

Expect exciting stuff in 2018 also from Strung Out Nights, who played with many bonafide legends in 2017 and is set to bring us some progressive new stuff in the new year. Howling Lords have also gave me some peeks into some interesting new directions they're going in genre-wise. And I think we're gonna' see great things from Anna Secret Poet as she blew me away at the end of the year with a fantastic album in the form of 'Tits of Steel', which I encourage you to buy, and get out to see her live in 2018 if you wanna see an original and talented live show. - C.T Herron.

So there you go folks, our selection of top picks for 2018! Get them all checked out, and of course, have a cracking New Year!