Our Top Picks Of Who You Should See At Laneway 2019

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Our top picks for artists to see at next year’s St. Jerome’s Laneway Festival.

28th January - Albert Park, Auckland, New Zealand

Written by Aitken Hawkins.

Year in year out somehow Laneway Festival continues to delivery a variety of artists unexpectingly to visit New Zealand, with 2019 being no different. Held at Albert Park, Laneway runs across the precinct & into the surrounding streets.

We’ve decided to take a further look and boil down some of the clientele attending the new event, looking a little deeper into their origins, breakthrough tracks & overall sound.

Newspread_Our Top Artists You Should See For Laneway 2019_John Hopkins

John Hopkins

No stranger to Laneway Festival, Jon Hopkins should be a greatly anticipated artist to this year’s stage. The UK based electronic artist, has an expansive history working alongside Peter Jackson & Brian Eno on The Lovely Bones, David Lynch (yes the Twin Peaks David Lynch) & a large body of work with Coldplay.

Hopkins is an artist who unlocks something else within music. Listening to his work takes you on an audial journey, something a little more than your standard verse, hook, verse, hook structure. His sounds span across ambient piano & ethereal vocals through to reverberating deep house.

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All of this diversity is interwoven into each track, giving his music a remarkable sense of something greater than itself. If you’re not familiar with Hopkins’ work check out ‘Everything Connected’ from his latest body of work ‘Singularity’.

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Imugi 이무기

Taken from Korean Mythology, the word ‘Imugi’ was believed to be something lesser than a dragon, resembling a serpent like creature. The way it would become a fully fledged dragon was to live on for a 1000 years. Within this brings a certain premise to the Auckland band which is exactly what they aim to achieve. (replace the dragon part with a renowned band & maybe not 1000 years).

Vocalist Yery Cho & producer Carl Ruwhiu form the duo that is Imugi, creating synth pop with perfectly accompanied vocals from Cho. A band to keep your ears on for the future as they continue to grow & release more music. Check out ‘Paradise’ from their 2018 EP, ‘Vacasian’.

Newspread_Our Top Artists You Should See For Laneway 2019_Lontalius


An artist who is not afraid to express his vulnerability & desire, Lontalius has been a long running success both within New Zealand & internationally without compromising his own sound. Since signing to Partisan Records, Lontalius has consistently brought music full with emotion, love, lust & nostalgia. Some of Lontalius best works begun covering more upbeat rap tracks from Future, Yung Lean, (a lot of) Drake as well as what I consider one of the best christmas albums you’ll ever hear.

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Lontalius’ voice is sorrowfully melodic & addicting. Without a question one of the must see acts of the festival not only to support one of NZ’s best artists but to also capture a low profile artist in the flesh. Since releasing his initial work just over 8 years ago he has kept a fairly low internet presence. You’re able to capture odd appearances on youtube performing live & idiosyncratic covers however the content is scarce. All the more reason to witness the world of Lontalius.

Newspread_Our Top Artists You Should See For Laneway 2019_DJDS


Fluctuating from up beat pop to more subdued synth ridden tracks, DJD’s sit more on the mainstream end of electronic music. Their discography, riddled with heavy collaborations, give them such a diverse palette of accompanied vocals. Ranging from The Dream, Khalid, Vic Mensa but more importantly they’ve worked with Ye, heavily credited on The Life of Pablo (hopefully they’ll spin Fade).

Something like a tasteful YouTube holiday montage, if you enjoyed Jamie XX’s album ‘In Colour‘ & the summer vibe that it brings, DJD’s are definitely a duo to catch live, one of their best mixes comes from a free show they did a few years back in Tijuana, Mexico.

Newspread_Our Top Artists You Should See For Laneway 2019_Mitski


Disguising her very lonely & melancholic songwriting of ‘Nobody’ behind a ridiculously catchy & upbeat track is what makes Mitski so enjoyable. Her lyrics are notable for their almost desolate qualities accompanied by indie rock ballads.

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Her most recent album ‘Be The Cowboy’ gives reminisce of a less grungy PJ Harvey or the same feel of loss of a beach house track (for all the right reasons). Don’t get me wrong this isn’t an artist you’re going to listen to & feel instantly grim but more captured in a pensive reflection of love & relation but also dancing along in the living room all at the same time.

Newspread_Our Top Artists You Should See For Laneway 2019_A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie

A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie

With the absurd rise in rap culture pretty much cultivating every avenue of the music world right now, it is heavily oversaturated with rappers flexing their wealth over a handful of producers. I think the sound has definitely become monotonous with only a few artists really differentiating themselves.

A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie certainly has a point of difference, he doesnt fit within your Lil Skies, Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert sounds but has a wider spectrum varying from Young Dolph to PND or Lanez especially with his latest LP ‘International Artist’. Since being named in the 2017 XXL Freshman Class he has quickly progressed his sound releasing several EP’s & Mixtapes, his track featuring Kodak Black ‘Drowning’ really bought him a lot of hype but shines a lot more on ‘Say A’, a much more upbeat piece. Boogie continues to nail his sound, creating a genuine artist out of himself.

Newspread_Our Top Artists You Should See For Laneway 2019_Billie English

Billie Eilish

At only 16 Billie has already made a phenomenal name for herself. Since the release of her breakthrough track ‘Ocean Eyes’ (which has already gone Platinum) Eilish has cemented her name in the music industry increasingly so with ‘Lovely’, an emotional duet with artist Khalid, rising to over 200 million streams on Spotify.

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Eilish’s lyrics delve into depression, heartbreak, anxiety, unrequited love all like something out of personal diary, which makes her songs all so relatable & heart wrenching.

Her success has spiralled, already resulting in world tours & now her next destination, Laneway Festival 2019. She is definitely going to be an act to catch live & witness her rising fame as she takes the world by storm. Listen here to one of her better tracks ‘bitches broken hearts’ produced by her brother, actor & musician Finneas.

Tickets are guaranteed to sell out so get in before it’s too late, the festival runs on the 28th January 2019. Head over to their website to find out more info.

Photos: Sourced

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