2021 is on course to be the best year for new British groups in well over a decade, with a new wave of guitar bands drawn from all over the UK breaking through.
BPI analysis shows that the chart-topping success of Wigan band The Lathums means that so far in 2021, British bands have ruled the Number 1 spot on the Official Albums Chart for 11 out of the 39 Official Chart weeks – that’s well over a quarter (28%). This upward trend compares with a figure of 17% in 2020 and 15% in 2019, and with many more albums by British bands slated for release later this year this figure is only likely to rise.
Being able to discover new music through streaming is enabling a new wave of British bands to rapidly build huge global audiences, and in the process contribute to the impressive stat that UK artists now account for 1 in every 10 global streams.
Other British bands that have recently enjoyed breakthrough success include West Lothian band The Snuts who back in April became the first Scottish band to score a Number 1 debut album since 2007 , plus Leicester’s Easy Life and Londoners Sports Team, while Oxford-based Glass Animals have had hundreds of millions of streams of their global hit Heat Waves. Many more have enjoyed Top 10 success on the Official Albums Chart this year, including Shame, Black Country New Road, Pale Waves, Black Honey, Dry Cleaning and Squid.
BPI’s Gennaro Castaldo adds: “New British bands have been quietly breaking through in recent years, but this trend has really exploded in 2021, propelled by streaming and vinyl and fuelled by a new wave of brilliant guitar groups drawn from all over the UK. The Lathums are just the latest superb new band to make their mark, underlining that 2021 is shaping up to be the year of the new British band!”
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