Michael Kiwanuka Wins BBC Sound Of 2012

Singer-songwriter comes top of 2012 BBC list, landing ahead of Skrillex, Frank Ocean, Azealia Banks, A$AP Rocky and, err... some others

London singer-songwriter Michael Kiwanuka has topped the 2012 edition of the BBC’s annual ‘Sound Of’ poll, from a longlist of fifteen artists that also included sweaty moshstepper Skrillex, Odd Future-affiliated R’n’B producer/singer Frank Ocean and much-hyped rapper A$AP Rocky.

The Sound of 2012 top five therefore runs as follows:

  1. Michael Kiwanuka
  1. Frank Ocean
  1. Azealia Banks
  1. Skrillex
  1. Niki & The Dove

With his fairly straightforward acoustic soul songwriting, there’s little about Kiwanuka’s music that could be said to represent a bold new step forward in music for 2012. Then again, the BBC Sound Of list isn’t exactly noted for its outre choice of winners, and placed alongside most of the other nominees from this year’s list (plus the mighty combined force of past winners such as Jessie J, Corrine Bailey Rae and Ellie Goulding) Kiwanuka doesn’t seem such a bad choice. He does carry a great deal more punch in the songwriting department than, say, Skrillex, or the majority of the Jools Holland lounge fare that didn’t even manage to reach this year’s shortlist.

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