Birthdates: Malcolm Brickhouse: Jan. 19, 2001 (Age: 13); Alec Atkins: March 1, 2001 (Age: 13) and Jarad Dawkins: Dec. 20, 2001 (Age: 12)
Last Year’s Rank: N/A
Why They’re Hot: Not many New York street performers go from busking in Times Square to rocking the stage at Barclays Center — but Unlocking the Truth has proved to be no ordinary band. The middle school-aged power trio has paired humble beginnings with top-notch training (Power Chord Academy, School of Rock, New York City Rock Camp) to build some serious buzz over their metallic jams. That Barclays appearance — a Brooklyn Nets halftime show, to be specific — sparked a record deal with The Cherry Party/Sony (in partnership with Artery) that will produce a debut album in 2015. Interviews reveal the boys are all about being themselves and owning their influences (Disturbed, Slipknot, Dream Theater) even when all their classmates are rocking hip-hop and top 40. They’ve slayed amateur night at the Apollo Theater, opened for Guns N’ Roses in Las Vegas, and rocked the main stage at 2014’s Coachella festival, which more than earns them a spot at the cool kids’ table, if you ask us.
Billboard’s 2014 21 Under 21 List