Electronic dance music is not for everyone, because not everyone has a soul. For those who do and appreciate the producers and DJs who keep the dance-times rolling, I’m here to expand your EDM horizons.
When you ask a casual listener who they like, you hear names like Armin Van Buuren, Skrillex, Diplo, and Calvin Harris. Let’s give credit where credit is due; those huge names helped bring the genre into mainstream culture and are still cranking out massive EDM hits. But there are so many lesser known artists slowly plugging away, playing clubs and festivals around the world, who are equally deserving of your attention (ear-tention?).
Which ones are ready to drop the bass and break beat themselves to the top of the charts?
Below are ten producers/DJs looking to have a big 2016 with their electro sounds. All you have to do is click on the SoundCloud samples and you’ll understand why I put them in my top-ten list of EDM acts that could take this year by storm.
Also known as Tyler Marenyi, NGHTMRE is pretty new to the scene; but his two years of work has already made an impact. His sound is considered organic and outside of the EDM norm. He likes to bend all kinds of genres into his music like R&B and rock ‘n’ roll. He’s already amassed a huge following but could make more massive strides in 2016.
Self-taught producer Isabell Rezazadeh, aka REZZ, hails from the Canadian side of Niagara Falls and is making a name for herself with her dark and sinister-sounding techno. She has gotten love from Skrillex and has been compared to Trent Reznor.
So much great EDM is coming out of Canada and here is another example. Jesse Hughes, aka Vanic, is a DJ/producer from the Vancouver, British Columbia, area. He likes to blend sunny synth lines with yummy vocals, walking the lines of dubstep, house, and trap. Expect a fantastic 2016 from Vanic.
The producing duo of Michael David and Tyler Blake put out retro-style tracks that hit on disco, funk, 80s synth, and the more traditional sounds of house and dub. Their sound is very poppy, but it’s California beach melodic that integrates traditional organic instruments for optimal impact. Their audience is growing by the day. Put them on your ears while you are rubbing down the suntan lotion.
What were you doing at 16 years old? Probably not knocking out big EDM anthems. This British prodigy is making waves within the future house genre. He’s adopted a garage-inspired, gritty electro style. People are just starting to realize that we could have a legend in the making.
Nick Miller, aka Illenium, produces emotional melodic dubstep. But it’s his live shows that really set him apart. One part elegance, two parts rage, he takes you on a journey through various genres, melodies, and sounds. It’s a true experience and the world is taking note, with larger festivals booking him as a headliner. Keep an eye out for Illenium in 2016.
Timo Romme, better known as MOTi, is a dutch DJ/Producer who has collaborated with the biggest EDM acts in the business. His sound is a big room, more progressive EDM style. Think Major Lazer with a touch of Tiësto. That’s not too shabby.
There is a new wave of big room house coming and Olly James Purvis is at the forefront of the movement. He is not only uber talented, but at 22 years old, he still has a ton of time to make big career strides. And I have no doubt that he will; just listen to the collaborations that he’s been doing with LoaX and you’ll know this guy is legit.
Maurice West throws out magnificent big room house anthems and makes it look easy. He has a fantastic main stage presence, governing festivals like a maestro while cranking out energetic bass lines, punchy grooves, and funky twisted sounds. That pure bass power should make him a big name in 2016.
Riggi and Piros
These New Jersey boys started DJing at 16 years old and started producing at 17. Riggi and Piros have been taking the big room scene by storm with their larger-than-life sounds and massive remixes. They had a huge 2013 and haven’t looked back since. They are on the precipice of mainstream super-stardom.
Just as his name sounds, Bleep Bloop is at the forefront of computer-based music. His overly synthesized and experimental sound has made him distinctive within a genre that hinges upon uniqueness. His uncut, beat-driven tracks will remind you of Glitch Mob, but Bleep Bloop is trailblazing his own electronic sound in 2016.
Pär has been a central figure in the Swedish electronic scene for a couple of decades as record store owner, label manager and producer. His techno sound is almost very retro sounding, in that it’s something you probably would hear in the 90s scene but far more polished. He can go hard and heavy or bring it down tempo and experimental. This is on full display when you listen to his debut album “Isle of Real.” This ten track LP will take you on a journey where you can actually hear Grindvik’s moods through his sounds.
EDM FI Studio (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_J30rUobUsA)