This year over 650 bands or artists applied this year's for Hard Working Class Heroes festival and judges whittled that down to just 50 acts who will be showcasing their talents to fans and industry folk over the weekend of September 27th - 29th.

Previous break-outs at Hard Working Class Heroes include Villagers, The Coronas and Hozier - here are our ten must-see acts of the weekend. 

AE MAK

You might have been lucky enough to have caught AE MAK’s kinetic live shows when they opened for Tune-Yards earlier this year, but if not you’re in for a treat. Aoife McCann's brainchild marries tribal electronic pop with a punk-esque energy that leaves you feeling invigorated and exhilarated. 

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BEAUTY SLEEP

Belfast based Beauty Sleep make glorious guitar dream-pop with stunning harmonies that will stop you in your tracks - they’re even more mesmeric in the flesh. Their live show is not one to be missed.

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XO MO

Xo Mo is a Mullingar-based electronic duo, comprised of childhood friends Jordan and Elliot. The pair have been making music together for the last 8 years, but after five-time Grammy Award-winning producer and songwriter Mike Dean offered them advice akin to the kind he’d given to Kanye and Beyonce, the pair released Sweat, a high energy electro-pop stomper with thumping drum beats. They’ve been playing the festival circuit all summer so their live show is going to be a treat.

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BICURIOUS

If you’re a fan of catchy, clever and melodic guitar riffs, enjoy mosh pits, head banging or vegan cake you’re going to love Bicurious. Proof that guitar rock is still going strong on this Emerald Isle, Bicurious are part of a thriving scene of pure unapologetic instrumental heft. 

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A SMYTH

Former frontman of Vann Music, A Smyth is no stranger to the Irish music scene; his new music, however, offers an introspective reflection upon how his musical experiences have affected his relationships and caused somewhat of a millennial burnout. His most recent single Second Moon hints at influences from Tom Petty and Ryan Adams, and is nothing short of brilliant. 

JUST MUSTARD 

They're a Dundalk quintet delivering a mix of '90s grunge and some kind of trip-hop/noise pop mesh that shouldn’t work - but absolutely does. We can easily picture them playing huge sold-out stadium gigs, so catching them now in the more intimate surroundings of HWCH is a must. 

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KITT PHILIPPA

Kitt Philippa is simply incredible. Citing influences such as James Blake and Jeff Buckley, KP is creating goose-pimple inducing music which will resonate with you, a sound positively erupting with spirit. 

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MOLLY STERLING

Molly Sterling has had a whirlwind of a year. Her debut single Plain Static receiving International acclaim, featuring on hit US podcast Guys We F**ked as well as amassing almost 100k streams on Spotify. She is by no means resting on her laurels, however, having returned with another killer single in the form of Stripped Down and festival appearances at Forbidden Fruit, Sea Sessions and Castlepalooza. 

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PILLOW QUEENS

Having broken onto the Irish music scene in late 2016 with their debut EP Calm Girls, Pillow Queens have been grafting away ever since, playing gig after gig across the UK and Ireland building up a loyal fanbase which includes James Vincent McMorrow, who called their song Favourite his ‘favourite of the year by a mile’. Their live performance is rivalled only by their weird and wonderful stage banter. 

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MARIA KELLY

Maria Kelly is a superbly hardworking musician, living between Dublin and Berlin and opening for artists such as the aforementioned James Vincent McMorrow, KT Tunstall and Bell X1's Paul Noonan (Bell X1), as well as playing at last year’s Great Escape, Electric Picnic, Other Voices. It’s amazing that she still has the time to write such honest and poignant songs. 

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Hard Working Class Heroes takes place at various venues across Dublin from 27-29 September - more details here.