Best New Artist of 2015 – 5th Annual Loudwire Music Awards
Every year, rock and metal sees some new bands enter the fold, blowing away fans with incredible debut albums or chart-topping songs. One of the most revered aspects of the heavy music community is that so many fans feel invigorated by the music that they listen to that it inspires them to form a band. For this reason, the words "rock will never die" and "metal will never die" will always ring true.
After careful consideration, the list of nominees has been narrowed down to the 10 acts below. If you're unfamiliar with any of these bands, give them a listen because you don't want to be the only one who doesn't know their name as they continue to rise up the rock ladder. It’s time to vote for the Best New Artist of 2015 in the 5th Annual Loudwire Music Awards! Check out the nominees below, and keep voting every hour until the polls close on Dec. 1 at 8AM ET!
Megadeth fans were shocked when Shawn Drover and Chris Broderick exited the band within mere hours of each other last fall. As we soon learned, the musicians were keen on starting their own project. And after adding former Scar the Martyr vocalist Henry Derek and Shadows Fall's Matt Bachand, the pieces were in place for Act of Defiance. True to their word, the band delivered a true metal album with Birth and the Burial, yielding the singles "Throwback," "Refrain and Re-Fracture" and "Legion of Lies."
German technical death metallers Alkaloid are new to the scene, but they bring a lot of familiar faces to the fold. The band feels like a supergroup when you look at their collective résumé, counting drummer extraordinaire Hannes Grossman, guitarist Christian Muenzner and bassist Linus Klausenitzer (all having played together in Obscura) among the names. Their sound is what everyone expected, which is in no way a discredit. These are some of metal's elite and it's refreshing to see and hear them in a band together again.
After paying their dues opening for name acts in recent years, Atlanta's Bridge to Grace released their debut full-length Origins in 2015. The hard-hitting rock band first cracked through at radio with the chugging rocker "B-tch." They achieved even bigger success with the album's second single, the haunting track "Everything" that showed a little more of the soulful and emotional side of vocalist David Garcia. Rounded out by Alex Cabrera, Christian Lowenstein and Justin Little, Bridge to Grace should be heard from for years to come.
Pennsylvania’s Crypt Sermon have only released one album, but can be counted among the doom elite both old and new. To say Out of the Garden is an instant classic still doesn’t feel like it’s giving the band their due credit. The album is of the highest quality from top to bottom boasting a well-rounded pristine production. Guitar harmonies weave in and out of each other with the drumming dragging the weight of the riffs while Brooks Wilson's powerful voice rings loud and true.
It was a banner year for upstart rockers First Decree. The Wyoming based band really started to see their profile rise after opening for In This Moment, which coincided with the release of their driving single "Lost in the Crowd." The band soon followed with their hard-hitting second single from This Is Our Rise, titled "Stop." Led by vocalist Travis James and featuring Dane, Isaac and Zach Lopez-Smith, First Decree have a bright future.
Swedish hardcore act God Mother unleashed their monstrous debut full-length, Maktbehov, this year. In the tradition of Swedish d-beat, Maktbehov is relentless from start to finish, honing a classic Swedish beatdown tone to create audio violence in the vein of Skitsystem and Disfear.
Massachusetts rockers Highly Suspect had a major breakout in 2015, due in part to their long-running single "Lydia." The song topped out in the Top 5 at Active Rock radio and put them on the map musically. By the end of the year, the band was beginning to dig deeper into their Mister Asylum album, with the song "Bloodfeather" getting a look. This powerful trio features singer-guitarist Johnny Stevens, paired with siblings Ryan and Rich Meyer on drums and bass.
Red Sun Rising left their imprint on 2015 with their breakout release Polyester Zeal. The band climbed all the way to the top of the Active Rock chart with "The Otherside" single, and with the album finally dropping in late summer, there's plenty still to be heard from these upstart rockers.
The term "supergroup" certainly fit when a press release discussing the formation of a band whose members played on 25 Top Ten Rock Singles arrived. It turns out that band was Saint Asonia, featuring former Three Days Grace vocalist Adam Gontier, Staind guitarist Mike Mushok, Dark New Day bassist Corey Lowery and ex-Finger Eleven drummer Rich Beddoe. Making their live debut at Rock on the Range, the four-piece tore it up and soon they released the single "Better Place." With songs like "Blow Me Wide Open" and "Let Me Live My Life," the band's self-titled debut was definitely a solid start.
The Temperance Movement saw their breakthrough come in the form of the sing-along single "Take It Back," which came from their self-titled disc. Led by live wire vocalist Phil Campbell and a solid dual guitar attack and killer rhythm section, the Temperance Movement brought their infectious, bluesy rock vibes to new audiences this year. And the band is keeping the momentum going, with a new disc set to arrive in early 2016.