Say what you will about Scandinavia or the American overhaul, but Britain has continued to hold its corner where electronic music is concerned. Be it the consistent export of artists or its currently burgeoning deep house circuit, few can argue of the talent pool which has emerged from our fair shores over the past five years. At the outset of an already promising year for industry and musical aptitude alike, this is my breakdown of ten of the essential British assets set to raise the bar for country and craft alike throughout 2013.
From global festival fever to the now unchartered popularity of Electronic music, 2012 has spelled a special signal of change in the tides of Electronic music. While the focus may have fallen on America and the over-coined and ineffective snack-food terminology of EDM, there can be little denying that the countless over-exaggerations and wave-upon-wave of fast ‘professionals’ has been met with an unprecedented and undeniably positive wave of promising talent throughout.
But with Deep House back on the menu and a very popular thirst for ‘proper’ Progressive House suggesting a remaining pulse of integrity in movements both underground and upfront, the now global ascent of club culture and artists willing to purvey their hearts on the Dance floor and digital market suggests that rather than a short spell of cultural deviance, Electronic music has found a significant renaissance within the 21st century. Rather than reeling out a Forbes-esque list of hard-hitters set to bust the million mark in pursuit of obnoxious valour and stadium-proof ascendancy, here are the artists whose ferocious industry manoeuvres are sure to speak for themselves in 2013:
More a religious movement than a mere cultural shift, British clubbing has always rested on the laurels of providing some irreplaceable temples amid the evolution of Dance music. From raving in fields to the more socially acceptable sweat boxes that have characterized this musical uprising our modern get-up may lack the va-va-voom of stateside super clubs, but it sure still delivers the stuff unforgettable nights are made of. With the Deep House renaissance gradually churning at the limelight once reserved for its European peers and a new generation of clubbers keen to rekindle the purer energy of the Acid House explosion, there has never been a better time to shout loud and proud for the British club life. In the same vein as its artists currently shining a light on the global circuit, our ideals have largely persevered in the face of cultural change and maintained a firm reputation for explosive nights of Dance music across the nation.
Far from an echo of their bleep-orientated peers, NO_ID have made few apologies for ditching the national norm. Broken through by Michael Woods and embraced immediately by Axtone flag bearer Axwell, their now steady overhaul of the global festival and club circuit has shown that whatever the charts might suggest, differentiation can overhaul the weight of cultural hysteria. Mere minutes before their second live encounter with the larger than life crowds of the ever-supportive Swedish House Mafia, Dan Carter caught up with the Dutch House trailblazers to seek the identifying factors of an unexpected European success story that refuses to be boxed.
When De La Soul suggested three was the magic number, they more than likely didn’t have Hardwell’s Revealed Recordings imprint to mind. But already sporting a sturdy catalogue of modern club anthems and three of Holland’s youngest frontrunners to date, this early Hip Hop mentality has certainly worn off on the European Dance explosion. With successive solo and collaborative ventures already scaling the digital charts and global clubland alike, the future movements of young label talents Dyro, Dannic and Jordy Dazz remain a point of considerable interest to industry taste makers and aficionados alike towards one of the more prominent collectives to break through the notoriously competitive Dutch scene. The Revealed Records trio caught up with Dan Carter during the labels’ ADE showcase at Escape nightclub to talk breaking through, keeping it fresh and rising in the shadows of one of Holland’s hottest young talents to date.
Onstage, her opulent presence and sharp vintage sense of fashion notoriously sets in motion the edge of artistic confidence for the 21st century diva. On the other end of the phone, however, Eva Simons is far more timid than her explosive live and recorded persona might suggest. ‘I am still getting used to doing these interviews, sometimes I find them scarier than the shows’, she suggests – an ironic statement from the woman who has joint-handedly conquered the high-end of live dance music while maintaining a consistent finger on the pulse of mainstream Dance music. While her part in Will.I.Am’s ‘This Is Love’ could not have hurt her international explosion, her liberating role as leading lady to a year where DJ and producers too often take the heat has seen club-savvy music and soulful pop vocals united to a notable standard of quality throughout 2012. But as Dan Carter discovered during an exclusive chat with Holland’s hottest vocal export, taking the world under your own name is no mean feat in modern music.
More often reduced to a slew of clichés and headline artists, true to heart advocates of the French club movement would be forgiven for holding resentment towards their nations wider picture. Between successive releases for Parisian heavyweights Kitsune and high profile remix duties for Armand Van Helden, Steve Aoki and Cicada alike, Caens’ own BeatauCue have proven themselves far more than a recycled murmur of their predecessors’ ideals. At the folding point of a year that has seen them scale the globe with their quirky Electro sensibilities, Dan Carter met the eclectic duo behind a mysteriously satisfying new addition their nations Electronic legacy.
To some it is where the real business of the year happens. To others it is an excuse to put names to faces and escape the tedium of email management for a few days. Wherever you stand on the fence, there is no denying the buzz surrounding the docile canals and cobbled bridges of Amsterdam when Amsterdam Dance Event comes to town. While the days may be reserved for hard graft and steady listening at the various conference sites dotted around the city, the annual event always holds special resonation to the people of the night that travel from across the globe to be there. For fear of newcomers getting lost among the action, this is our first breakdown of just some of the parties you should be vetting some interest in once you are done dodging kamikaze cyclists and ‘subtly’ scoping out peoples’ conference passes.
From ‘Riverside’ to his Rock The Houze imprint, Sidney Samson is smarter than your average DJ. Having fooled us into thinking that the aforementioned chart-topper was the apex of his global legacy, the stateside festival favorite has found a firm balance between discreet mainstream collaborations and full-blown club fillers. Off the back of his debut residency on the White Isle and a season of eccentric festival action, Dan Carter sat down with the bleep-happy Dutchman to discover the highs and lows of being associated with one of the strongest hallmarks in national sound to touch the European House movement.
Between genre-defying albums and cutting edge VDJ concepts that have characterised his love persona throughout, Sander Kleinenberg remains one of Holland’s most diverse Electronic artists to date. Armed with a slew of eclectic talents under his THIS IS imprint, 2012 has spelt yet another year of forward-thinking movement from the multidexterous industry figure. Ahead of his two-round takeover of Amsterdam Dance Event this year, the THIS IS flag bearer offered a fews words of wisdom for those wishing to make it out alive from the annual orgy of hard business and copious partying that is on everybody’s lips.