TheRichMusician.com - Free music industry research and info for musicians
There's some incredible talent bubbling through from the underground right now. We've picked out ten fantastic and diverse up-and-coming artists to watch out for in 2011. Please share this page and help these unique and brilliant talents get some recognition in an overly homogenized, cookie-cutter world.
Zomby is an electronic music producer from the UK who has been heralded as a genius by a small but growing cult of aficionados on the underground circuit - since around 2007, when he began releasing standout tracks on dubstep labels such as Hyperdub. Always one for doing things his own way, Zomby's sound is an eerie collage of a wide range of influences: Electronic ambience, video game sounds, dubstep, grime and hardcore collide, creating a sound that is sometimes ethereal beauty and sometimes twisted subterranea. One Youtube viewer's classic comment sums it up: "The undead are grooving to this 20km under the crust."
Zomby has deliberately avoided publicity and hype, preferring anonymity and to let the music speak for itself. But there have been some indicators of destiny and financial success along the way: Zomby's track "Tears In The Rain", which samples classic cyberpunk movie "Blade Runner" was chosen for a concert interlude on parts of Lady Gaga's Monster Ball Tour.
With news just breaking of his signing to seminal independent label 4AD (who developed the careers of Cocteau Twins, Dead Can Dance and The Pixies, among others), it seems as though Zomby is poised for a breakout. Zomby's first release on 4AD, a 10" due on May 10th 2011, has been stated to include "Natalia's Song" - and the video above right contains a 2-minute section of a version of this track which was aired by Mary Anne Hobbs in late 2010. An amazing work of sublime, haunting beauty and originality, "Natalia's Song" seems likely to become an underground classic. www.myspace.com/zombyproductions
Stomacher is a phenomenal and stylish five piece rock band from Northern California. Their most recent album "Sentimental Education" received rave reviews from the music press, who heaped praise on it with superlatives such as "dazzling", "truly breathtaking" and "goose bump inducing". And yet, for some stranger-than-strange reason, the world has been slow to react and pick up on this world-class act.
There can only be two logical reasons: Either 1) Stomacher were frozen into an ice block by a jealous deity, or 2) the people of planet earth are not paying attention. Word from Stomacher's agent, in conversation with TheRichMusician.com, was that the band is at large. Phew. So bump up your system volume and check out Stomacher's amazing track "Police" (in the Youtube video to the right), one of the best tracks TheRichMusician.com has heard this year. http://stomachermusic.com
Jamie Woon is a singer / songwriter from the UK who came to our attention a couple of months ago. His debut album "Mirrorwriting", imminently about to drop, just received a rave review in NME whose comments included "moments of remarkable beauty" and, amusingly "you can practically feel your bra-strap coming undone". Woon can sing, can play and is evidently quite able to make the ladies swoon - so he's one of TheRichMusician.com's hot picks.
What the heck is going on? The amount of raw talent exploding onto the scene at the moment is ridiculous. When TheRichMusician.com first discovered the video of Dub Mafia's "Rhythm Running" (right), it was one of those stopped-dead-in-your-tracks moments. Whoa. WHOA! Do not miss this one. Dub Mafia is a seriously tight band with phenomenal skills and blazing energy.
Hailing from Bristol, England (a city with a deep roots in modern music including the likes of Massive Attack, Roni Size and Kosheen), Dub Mafia is a high-energy live act poised to get some serious traction in 2011. With a style that fuses drum and bass, dub, dubstep and world influences, Dub Mafia does everything live. Every member of the 7-piece band is stellar; and they've got that vital "edge" factor. Check the video for an example of the Dub Mafia demolition process. Watch out for Dub Mafia... TheRichMusician.com's sixth sense has been triggered. This act is going to be huge. www.dub-mafia.com
Tina Malia is a standout singer/songwriter from California, USA. Originally carving out a niche in California in the folk / new age genres, Tina's incredible voice and creative songwriting talent have birthed three solo albums - and her stunning, original songs such as "Shores of Avalon" have led many to opine that she should already be world-famous.
In the past year however, things have been gathering momentum: Guest appearances with India Arie; a new management deal... and late in 2010 she collaborated with rising star DJ / electronic producer Bassnectar to create the sensational "Underwater", recently released to rapturous acclaim from Bassnectar's legion of fans in the USA. TheRichMusician.com has heard more of the unreleased material that's going to be on the next album - wait 'till you hear 'Boulevard'. For now, since we might be in trouble if we posted that, we've picked out a solo acoustic performance from a recent concert: Tina looks absolutely gorgeous, plays immaculately, writes stellar songs and sings like an angel. It's a perfect scorecard in the talent department and TheRichMusician.com is convinced Tina Malia is on her way. www.youtube.com/user/tinamaliamusic
MC Xander is the latest beat-boxer / loopstation talent to emerge from the UK. The "one-man-band" loop / beat-boxing genre has really taken off in the last couple of years, producing some phenomenal artists - such as Beardyman, Dub FX and Reggie Watts, all of whom are fantastic. What makes MC Xander stand out from the crowd in TheRichMusician.com's opinion is the fact that the man can really sing: His voice has purity, power, accuracy - and an incredible range from subsonic lows to ethereal falsetto highs. Not only that but he clearly has a feel and understanding of counterpoint - and can weave together a wide variety of parts and textures that fit together like pieces in a multidimensional jigsaw. Oh, and by the way he knows how to rock a crowd as well.
Xander's sheer musicality is getting delirious reviews and we think he's going to go far. His debut album is out as an independent release - check it out. www.mcxander.com
Soundprank is a progressive House / Trance producer from Canada. Recently signed to Anjunadeep, Soundprank's production quality and musicianship are an immediate standout. The artists's bio from the label states "Every now and then an artist comes along on with a sound so fresh that it's impossible to ignore" and TheRichMusician.com is inclined to agree. Check out the video for Soundprank's debut single on Anjunadeep "The Far Side", out now. It's brilliant, and if he keeps going like this, we think he's going to hold the world in the palm of his hand.
Check out the video for Soundprank's debut single on Anjunadeep "The Far Side", out now. www.myspace.com/soundprank
Valentina Lisitsa is a Ukrainian born concert pianist living in the USA. The classical piano genre is incredibly competitive and difficult to rise to prominence in. Valentina's piano career has been gathering momentum for the past few years with stellar concerts and recordings, and TheRichMusician.com thinks she is a serious artist, as opposed to a 'showboat' or a 'stunt pianist' as so many seem to be.
Although it would be easy to pick a video of one of the popular piano classics, which Lisitsa performs with grace and flair, we've gone against the grain and chosen something difficult and intense: The video opposite shows her recording Liszt's mighty "Totentanz" - a piece that falls firmly into the category of Liszt's "challenging" repertoire. Liszt's more demanding pieces are among the ultimate challenges for pianists: So difficult to play well that most pianists either don't bother, or immediately reveal that the music is beyond them - as the challenge is not only to play all the right notes but to do so in a manner that is musically meaningful. Lisitsa's fearless command of this demanding piece is superlative and indicates that she belongs to the pianist "super league". Standout moments - www.valentinalisitsa.com
THE EDEN HOUSE
The Eden House is a recently-formed gothic rock band from the UK with something of an all-star cast. Featuring core members Stephen Carey (Adoration), Tony Pettitt (Fields of the Nephilim) and twice Grammy Award nominated Andy Jackson (Pink Floyd/Gilmour engineer), The Eden Project has pulled in numerous guest artists including vocalists Julianne Regan (All About Eve), Evi Vine, Amandine Ferrari and Monica Richards (Faith and the Muse, Conflict). Instrumental contributions also come from violinist Bob Loveday (Penguin Café Orchestra, Van Morrison, Bob Geldof’); guitar contributions from Peter Yates, Nod Wright and Paul Wright (Fields of The Nephilim) ; drums from Simon Rippin (Nefilim, NFD) and Bob Irwin (Van Morrison, Johnny Cash).
The Eden Project is currently in the studio recording their second album; check out the video for a quick excerpt from some of the awesome new material in progress. www.theedenhouse.com
Phaeleh is an electronic music producer who has been building a cult underground following for the past couple of years. Phaeleh (aka Matt Preston) hails from Bristol, England and his deep sound has been described by one reviewer as "Intelligent Dubstep Music" - although in truth his work spans several electronic music genres. The high quality of his music has led to gigs all over the UK and Europe, in addition to much radio play and support from leading dubstep DJs for his recorded catalogue. Looking at his facebook page, it's easy to see that fans are raving about his work and his sound.... and his recent album "Fallen Light" has received critical acclaim. www.myspace.com/phaeleh
Well, that's it. TheRichMusician.com has made its prophecies. Shouts out to Ainslie's Musical Journey and www.dubstep-underground.com for their input. Please support real music and real talent. If you like this page, hit the "like" button - and buy music releases and concert tickets whenever you can, so that these great artists can continue to bring you the good stuff! And remember... dig deeper. ;)AA
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