As 2011 comes to a close and music fans everywhere compile their “Best-of” lists, here’s a look at five bands making a name for themselves in New York City and the music world. Be sure to catch them live in 2012. By Annie Reuter.

(credit: Lights Resolve)

Lights Resolve

With the release of their debut full-length album, Feel You’re Different, in October, the Long Island-based trio showcased their staying power. Sing-along choruses and a big arena sound embody the standout 11-tracks while their live show continues to impress. Catch them at Bowery Ballroom January 14 and see just why they’ve been compared to the Bravery and Muse.

(credit: Elizabeth and the Catapult)

Elizabeth and the Catapult

Having toured with Sara Bareilles earlier this year, Elizabeth and the Catapult continue to show their prowess. Elizabeth Ziman, the singer/songwriter/keyboardist of the band, captivates audiences everywhere with her honest lyrics and emotional yet haunting singing style.

(credit: We Are Augustines)

We Are Augustines

Formed after the demise of a former band, Brooklyn’s We Are Augustines write powerful storylines infused with heavy bass parts, fitting percussion and wavering vocals. Bringing to mind acts like Bruce Springsteen with their descriptive lyrics, and The Gaslight Anthem with their energetic live show, We Are Augustines proved they’re a band to reckon with at this year’s CMJ Music Marathon.

(credit: The Young Things)

The Young Things

For those that claim rock ‘n’ roll is dead, you obviously have never witnessed The Young Things live. With numerous showcases throughout NYC this fall, the band continues to build their fan base. Gritty guitar licks and heart-pounding drum beats accompany this Beatles throwback ensemble. Be sure to catch them every Wednesday in February at Bowery Electric.

(credit: Daniel Wayne)

Daniel Wayne

See Also: Brooklyn Songwriter Daniel Wayne to Perform at Glasslands Gallery

“People should expect to see a really energetic, moving performance,” Daniel Wayne told us in October. “Every time I get on the stage I give it everything I have.” It has been this type of performance that has fans coming back for more. Numerous venues throughout New York have gone silent while watching the Cincinnati native perform and he continues to strike a chord with his emotion fused vocals.

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Annie Reuter is a freelance writer and the founder of