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Good vibrations – the latest bands making waves in higher ed

Paul Greatrix looks at the latest higher education beat combos that are climbing up the hit parade
This article is more than 5 years old

Paul Greatrix is Registrar at The University of Nottingham, author and creator of Registrarism and a Contributing Editor of Wonkhe.

There are many, many connections between higher education and music and we’ve reported on quite a few of them here before.

We’ve looked at the older big names on the HE music scene and reported here on the lost bands of HE are well as some of the genuinely forgotten ones. In addition we have had other HE-related music topics including universities named after bands, VC Desert Island Discs and even some books about university gigs. We’ve also discovered some real academics in real bands.

Big in Japan

Of the ones we tipped for success at the beginning of 2018 and in earlier years, a few have made it big:

  • Snowflakes – teen pop sensations who have reacted surprisingly positively to the negative publicity they’ve received
  • KEF – all new industrial garage outfit who have already made a big splash but yet to release any material.
  • Spiked – wilful, self-indulgent, contrarian grungecore
  • Toadmeister – sophomoric solo songster, huge profile after spectacular New Year launch but possibly now falling out of favour despite deletion of most of back catalogue
  • Unconditional offer – sluggish alt rock from this southern stoner quartet
  • Brexodus – swaggeringly over-confident pub rock. Keep losing band members
  • Entry and Search – breakthrough rebellious and controversial hip hop duo
  • Two Year Degree – sharp suited jazz funk quintet who really mean business
  • Accelerated Degrees – long-haired, leather-trousered thrash metallers, continually irritated by being mixed up with Two Year Degree

Not Top of the Pops

Others we’ve talked about before here are still bubbling under:

Learning Gain – not likely to be forgotten

GPA – earnest US quartet much discussed but yet to persuade many in the UK of their merits.
Fresh Meat – tedious pseudo punk thrash kids from Coventry
Cyber Security – this electronic trio have already managed to build a massive online following despite their wholly derivative sound.
Mindfulness – flighty and ethereal electronica with Cocteau Twins inspired lyrics. Either really clever or utterly pointless.
Puppy Room – fey Glaswegian tinkly pop trio.
Lucky Jim – ageing solo vocalist from Inverness. Not lucky. Actually called Brian
Learning Gain – progressive Paper Lace derivatives. Famous for strange outfits

Gonna Make You a Star

Since our last listing we’ve been scouting around the clubs and campuses of UKHE to find tomorrow’s university stars. These are the new acts which we predict are really going to make it big this year:

  • KFI – futuristic electro pop duo. All the indicators are that they are going to be in the money.
  • No Deal – exceptional topical miserabilistic rock anti-harmonies from this stand-offish quartet.
  • Four Star – highly rated cerebral popsters
  • Admissions Scandal – shockingly aggressive rock trio
  • Pay Ratios – sharp, cutting edge electro agitprop
  • Amy Peterhouse – faux naive intelligent warblings
  • Library cats – cute indy pop
  • No Intervention – stand-offish yacht rock collective
  • Median White Band- highly picky middle of the road jazz funk combo
  • Sugar Daddies – seedy, sleazy, leering ageing neanderthal pub rock – popularity massively exaggerated
  • TEF Will Eat Itself – hard to fathom and genuinely unpopular English folksters
  • Manic Street Lecturers – hectoring polemical power rock
  • 3Ds – rumoured to be about to lose out on a recording deal
  • Ace of CASE – internationally popular trendsters – flush
  • Augar Review – radical folk rock combo – gone very quite after initial flurry of activity – mixed rumours about their continually deferred release
  • Predatory journals – impenetrable exploitative thrash metal
  • The T levels – determinedly unpopular techno trio
  • REF Speedwagon – brainy prog rockers – guilty pleasures for many
  • Common Academic Hierarchy – dull shoe gazer tedium
  • New Kids on the Blockchain – incomprehensible electro burbling

Which other HE bands have you spotted who are going to make it big in the charts this year?

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