It’s that time of year again. While the annual January round up of new acts to keep an eye on is nothing new, we like to think our Faces list has become one of the most reliable around. After all, the likes of Villagers, Soak, Heathers, Hozier, Little Green Cars and Daithí have all graced the feature over the years – and indeed last year’s cover star ProFound is shortly to appear in his debut movie.
That was then, however, and this is 2016. The twenty names on this year’s list run the usual gamut of styles – from hip-hop, pop and electronic to rock, urban folk and Irish language shoegaze – and come from cities and towns across the country. Residents of the capital will have the chance to see many of them live, starting tonight, at the Whelan’s Ones To Watch Festival – where State will be hosting the Faces launch night in the Upstairs venue on Friday with guests Joni, Young Phantom, Katie Laffan, AikJ and Contour. In addition Third Smoke, Not Monsters, Tuath, Travis Oaks, M(h)aol, Ports, The Mariannes, Le Boom and Slow Riot can also be found treading the Wexford Street boards between now and Sunday. And that’s just the start of it, with a year of live Faces events ahead of us.
But hey, enough of our yacking. Read all about the acts, hear what they sound like (including a plethora of previously unreleased tracks) and enjoy some incredible visuals from the State photography team below. We hope you enjoy our choices…