The 2008 Brit Awards will introduce a new "Critics Choice" category, celebrating acts tipped to break through in the coming year.

A panel of experts comprising music critics from national newspapers, major music magazines and Web sites, plus heads of music at major radio and TV stations will decide on the shortlist, and the ultimate winner of the new trophy.

The inaugural "Critics Choice" champion will be unveiled Dec. 10 on the revamped Brits Web site.

Those acts signed to a label who are poised to release a debut album in 2008 will qualify for the new category.

"The Brits continue their support for up and coming British talent by creating this new award," comments Ged Doherty, chairman of the Brits committee in a statement. "It's a fabulous idea and I can't wait to see who our panel of experts deem to be their choice for 2008."

The winner is to perform Jan. 14 at the traditional Brits Nominations Party, which will take place at London's Roundhouse in Camden and broadcast that night on ITV2.

The main Brits show, organized by labels body the BPI, will take place Feb. 20, 2008 at London's Earls Court venue, and will be aired live on national network ITV1.