Chances are you celebrated New Year back when December turned into January. Long term readers of Eddy Temple-Morris’ CMU column will know that you have another option. Rather than see in the new year in mid-winter, many pre-Christian cultures celebrate its coming as the spring awakens, bringing with it the sunshine and a whole load of new life. The Vernal Equinox hits this week, and to mark the occasion, Eddy has selected twelve of his favourite emerging artists for you to listen to.
This is my favourite time of year, when the year actually starts. On Tuesday this week the day and night will each be exactly twelve hours long. Astronomers call it the Vernal Equinox, and for my family, all Iranians, all Pagans, Zoroastrians, Fire Worshippers, Barbarians and anyone from any pre-Christian culture in this hemisphere, it’s New Year. Christians, who hijacked the actual New Year and replaced it with a farce on 1 Jan, in mid-winter, euphemistically call it first day of spring.
Whatever you want to call it, use it to welcome rays of sunshine, blossom, new buds, new shoots and a whole of glorious British summertime stretching out in front of us. It’s a sexy time. Animals and humans perk up and get frisky, everyone feels a bit jiggy and starts sniffing the air looking for new things, new people, new experiences, and for us, new music.
I’m noticing a disproportionally large number of tweets to @eddyTM asking for tips. People are thinking of new music right now, more than ever, so I’m going to take this opportunity to focus on a few acts that I’m really looking forward to seeing blossom this year.
These guys embody the sense of springtime in their music. Every time I play somebody a tune by these two, they fall in love. If you haven’t done so already, check ‘Olivia’ on Fat! Records, and expect big things, now Maribous have crossed over to Southern Fried, the same label as The Shoes, The Whip and Caged Baby.
The best woman in drum n bass is about to blow up. Her single, ‘Mind Controller’, is about to drop with a posse of thunderously brilliant remixes by the great and good of electronica. Festivals in UK and Europe will witness, first hand, how she can whip a crowd into a frenzy.
Not a secret volcano lair in Japan, as his name suggests, but a subterranean highland hideout for Scottish sonic terrorist, Tommy Forrest. The breadth of his vision is vast and spectacular. He does beautiful and he does terrifying with equal panache.
Every now and again I’ll come across an act that’s clearly pop and meant for much bigger things than a relatively underground, specialist show on a new music station like Xfm. Listen to ‘Drum In Your Chest’ then see if you can think of anything else that catchy in your life right now.
The Other Tribe
‘Business Man On Diazepam’ put them on my radar, now ‘Skirts’ is shaping up as one of the great British summertime tunes. They already have friends in high places, with the likes of Alex Metric professing love and a desire to work with them. A definite watch this space here.
These guys mix classical music, in the most literal way, with electronica, and with such a lightness of touch, and with such an eye for grandeur, I feel it’s only a matter of time before they do something massive, that will catapult them into the mainstream. I believe one of them is a film maker too, their videos look like they’ve had hundreds of thousands spent on them.
One of the rash of frighteningly talented young producers who’s already thinking outside the dubstep box. He has an enviable sense of melody and an epic, orchestral style that will transfer to any electronic music genre with equal interest.
Last January I knew Nero’s ‘Me & You’ would be one of the singles of the year, in the same way I know Monsta’s ‘Holdin On’ will be in my run down of top tunes at the end of 2012. I defy anybody not to smile while listening to this record. All boxes ticked, and a lot of record boxes crossed. One of those rare records that has soul and rocks at the same time.
Engine Earz Experiment
Already written about in this column in the context of that astonishing live collaboration with Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly and Jehst, the more I hear of this band, the more absorbed I become. They are simultaneously mesmerising and filthy. I’m working on a remix with EEE’s Prash at the moment that I’m so excited about I can barely contain myself.
Another perfect sound for springtime. For such a surly race, the Brits always pleasantly surprise me with their preponderance towards gorgeous, blissed out electronica, and in that tradition, this act will stand out as a shining example.
Another tradition is stylish French electronica. This producer couldn’t sound any more Gallic if he came hurtling at you on a bicycle covered in onions. Here is a sense of production and style that defies his astonishingly tender age.
Rack N Ruin
The other day I ended up playing three of his mixes/collabs on The Remix. This puts him toe to toe with favourites like Alex Metric, The Shoes, Flux Pavilion, UNKLE. Time to start taking this man very seriously I think.
There are so many more I want to write about here but just don’t have the time or space. I’ve been posting videos, free downloads, buy links and SoundClouds on www.facebook.com/eddytemplemorris so you can keep abreast of all these and more in what is shaping up to be an epic year.
And let’s not forget our old friends with new sounds to look forward to. There’s the return of amazing Jacques Lu Cont, Decky from Japanese Popstars’ mesmeric new project Sirkus Sirkuz, Photek continuing to captivate with his DJ-Kicks compilation, Jagga and Caan fascinating with their sense of melody and drama, The Shoes shocking us with their new video that could see them cross over at last, Slagsmalsklubben’s bubbling techno – always irresistible. Mistabishi’s new sounds enthral, while Miike Snow and Pnau uplift us. Flux Pavilion’s album will be awesome, and while we lose Sub Focus to the mainstream, TC will be the one to watch in the grey area between rock and dnb.
I’m looking ahead at this year and I’m washing my hands with invisible soap. Keep your eyes on the horizon. And smile as the light hits your face.
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Read more about: Akira Kiteshi | Ayah Marar | Big Kids | Clean Bandit | Dems | Engine Earz Experiment | Gemini | Madeon | Maribou State | Monsta | Rack N Ruin | The Other Tribe