- 07 Dec 20
Last years' top acts included Irish indie-rock band Inhaler, Easy Life, Joy Crookes, Yungblud and overall winner Celeste.
The BBC's Sound of 2021 longlist has been revealed, with DIY pop artists and UK rap placed at the forefront.
Ireland's own indie-rock outfit Inhaler made fifth place in the BBC Sound of 2020 list last year.
Lo-Fi Norway artist Girl In Red is arguably the most well-known name on the list, with seven million fans playing her tales of teenage angst on Spotify every month.
Bedroom pop artist Griff, psychedelic soul singer Greentea Peng and rap maverick Pa Salieu join her on the list, which is now in its 19th year.
Examining the best rising talent in music and compiled by a panel of 161 industry experts - including past nominees Billie Eilish and Stormzy - former winners include Adele and Celeste.
Only four of the acts on the Sound of 2021 longlist have played a headline gig as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic halting the live music industry in its tracks this year.
Wigan indie band The Lathums, had built a sizeable live following before the lockdown. The quartet were due to tour with Paul Weller this summer, but ended up livestreaming a concert from the circus ring at Blackpool Tower with two clowns as special guests.
Coventry-based rapper Pa Salieu played his first ever full show to a camera in an otherwise-deserted studio earlier this year, but lockdown also gave him space to make his debut album without distractions.
The 23-year-old is one of several artists on the longlist whose music defies categorisation, combining dancehall, drill and the hand-drum sounds of his Gambian heritage on the recent mixtape 'Send Them To Coventry'.
East London's Bree Runway takes elements of trap, R&B and hardcore metal on songs like 'ATM' and 'Little Nokia'.
The rapper and singer describes her music as "genre-fluid and destructive" and recently collaborated with Missy Elliot.
Hailing from Grantham in Lincolnshire, 20-year-old Holly Humberstone releases dark, moody ballads that will surely appeal to fans of Lorde and Maggie Rogers.
Multi-instrumentalist Alfie Templeman is known for his easy-going indie pop gems 'Happiness in Liquid Form', 'Forever Isn't Long Enough', 'Stop Thinking (About Me) and funky new single 'Shady'.
The 17-year-old from Bedfordshire taught himself 10 instruments, including guitar, violin, harmonica and bass.
Girl In Red (Marie Ulven) has built up a huge fanbase with songs that reflect on boredom, depression and making sense of her sexuality.
After scoring a viral hit with her first ever song, 'I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend', the singer is hoping that her sexuality won't be her defining talking point for long.
"We need queer art to make it normal," she told the New York Times. "We need protagonists who are just living their best life and gay - that's just part of their character."
Other nominees included rising MC Dutchavelli (the younger brother of rapper Stefflon Don) and soul poet Berwyn, whose shockingly candid ballads draw on his experiences of homelessness and neglect.
The top five will be revealed in the New Year on BBC Radio 1 and BBC News, with the winner being unveiled on Thursday, 7 January.
Last year's winner Celeste had plans for her debut album delayed by the pandemic, but her singles like 'Stop This Flame' and 'Little Runaway' have built up a momentum.
Her debut album, Not Your Muse, will arrive in February.
The 10 acts in the running are:
Girl In Red