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What’s new in the house

Tim Newman predicts the future trends for electronic music in Sydney.

To predict or observe the current trends in electronic music, whatever genre it’s been filed under, you really don’t need to be constantly refreshing Resident Advisor, Bleep! or any music blog. All you need to do is walk into a Café, a shop, or a bar that doesn’t follow the (frankly tiresome) Sydney trend of playing 90’s hip-hop all night.

House: it’s everywhere. Be it your local café, or a club in town, all of Sydney’s “hip” venues are moving back to the Detroit and Chicago tradition of the 808-clap. However this doesn’t mean that all we’ll be hearing for the next year is a bunch of cheesy vocals, but on the contrary what’s coming now is a new wave of innovative, interesting, electronic fusion. This has been called deep house, deep tech, tech house, minimal tech, techno-bass, or just straight techno, but really does a genre name matter? The best tracks and artists use and channel influence from many different styles, and to pigeonhole them all by what styles they reference would leave us with a different genre for each track.

As usual with trends, to see what is going to be big in Sydney 2012, it’s as easy as looking at Europe or The USA for the 6-12 month outlook. After Flying Lotus’ Los Angeles nailed it and “beats” became huge, Australian kids from all over started popping out of the woodwork, armed with an MPD32 and a whole library of samples. With the huge spike in interest for UK garage/bass music, from labels like Hotflush, Young Turks, and Hyperdub of last year, we watched SBTRKT, Burial and Mount Kimbie, and make massive waves in the Australian scene. James Blake’s recent offerings have gone back to his original experimental, minimalist style, and the Radiohead “TKOL RMX” EP’s made an enormous splash.

Just as last year – when “bass music” made waves in Europe, we felt a few ripples in Australia – during this year a more house-inspired side of new electronica is moving up the European/UK charts, and is receiving more and more attention from the Sydney scene. Artists like Scuba, Joy Orbison, Ramadanman, Just look at the Playground Weekender lineup – an entire day and night of one stage dedicated to London’s Crosstown Rebels, a tech-house label, for their world famous REBELRAVE. Three years ago, France’s Ed Banger records would have held a night of Soulwax and Busy P electro-thrash tracks, But now a bass-driven, deep house sound has taken hold, and people don’t feel the need to jump all over one another, or even get too sweaty. I say bring on the civil behavior.


Recommended Track: Battle For Middle You – Julio Bashmore

Recommended Mix: Fabriclive 56 – Ramadanman