Arriving after a year's worth of anticipation that included plenty of blogger appreciation, several EPs, and inclusion in the BBC's Sound of 2013 shortlist, Chvrches' debut album, The Bones of What You Believe, surpassed the significant hype surrounding it. Many of these songs already appeared on those buzz-building EPs, most notably "The Mother We Share," "Gun," and "Recover," all of which exemplify the Glasgow trio's way with frosty synths and poignant melodies. Taken as an album, though, they reveal a band not nearly as arty or aloof as seemingly like-minded contemporaries such as Grimes or Purity Ring; with their ready hooks and fondness for grand gestures, Chvrches are more likely to tour with Paramore than Factory Floor.
Drawing comparisons to Chvrches, Ellie Goulding, and pre-Silent Shout Knife with her airy yet edgy electropop, singer/songwriter Allie X made her debut in early 2014 with a pair of attention-getting singles, "Catch" and "Prime." Born Allie Hughes, she studied classical piano and voice at the Interlochen Arts Academy and graduated from Sheridan College's Musical Theater Performance program. She began making music in her hometown of Toronto in the mid-2000s, playing with local bands and writing and recording a handful of self-released albums.
Halsey is the alias of New York-based pop artist Ashley Frangipane. The NewJersey native took her moniker from a New York L train subway stop, and her adopted city plays a large role in both the sound and lyrics of her dark, gritty electro pop, which has been compared to acts like Chvrches and Lorde. Based on the strength of her first single, "Ghost," she signed a deal with Capitol-owned electronic/dance label Astralwerks in early 2014. Her debut EP, Room 93, arrived in October of that same year. In 2015, Halsey released her debut full-length album, Badlands, which featured production from Lido, the Futuristics, Son Lux, and others.