India is still in its nascent stage with respect to the Electronic Dance Music scene. Though the net worth of the current industry is around 400 – 500 Crores, a lot of avenues are left unexplored.
We currently are a nation obsessed with DJ Mag Top 20 artists. No doubt they are the crowd pullers but in terms of experience we might soon reach a standstill.
With the influx of so many international festivals in our country, it is high time music enthusiastic learn the new word called ‘Live Acts’. Yes it may not be so cool like “Put your F*ckin hands in the air” but definitely has more class associated to it.
In India very few artists have dared to go LIVE, and have stuck to a DJ set.
Here is a list of some artists which we think should come to India and showcase their brilliance to the ever growing electronic enthusiasts of India.
The Chemical Brothers
A common household name for all of us, but believe me they are much more than ‘Hey Boy, Hey Girl’. When they go live, it is intense. Visuals are artistically mixed with the music. They have the ability to recreate a different setting for each of their original tracks which has always left the crowd awestruck. To put a small visual into your image, in 2015 at the Glastonbury festival they managed to shoot lasers from two robots and then transformed the arena into a war zone.
Producing or contributing, from the likes of Coldplay to Brian Eno, Jonathan Julian Hopkins has done it all. Like his music, his live act is very unique. Even a small flicker of light during his set is a well thought process. A performer of his own music, Jon has managed to depict a variety of human emotions through his live sets. Where other dj’s have relied on machines, Jon has always managed to create depth his set with an organic approach.
Gavin Lynch is a traveller, and has managed to take his music to every part of the world. As a sound engineer, Gavin loves playing with machines and manages to pump in a lot with his Midi Controllers, samplers & effects. His sets match his maverick personality, through which he has created his own niche amongst techno fans. In 2014, Matador was awarded the best live performer, recognizing his efforts in a live setting. Gavin’s last trip to India saw 300 odd mad fans going crazy over his music till the wee hours.
This group is the perfect mixture of everything that goes with the word crazy. Rarely do you see Drum & Bass fused with Heavy Metal & Alternative in such an awesome way. They regained their status of a ‘Live Band’ at Ultra 2016 where they left the main stage with jaw dropping music and visuals. Throughout their journey the band has had a neat crossover between their DnB and rock styles. Guitar posses accompanied with monotonic lights & heavy bass set a surreal experience in the area. Just hope we get to head bang to their sounds in India soon.
Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, sounds like a National Geographic show but for fans like us he will always be the guy who started his Boiler Room set with “Urvasi, Uravsi”
A classically trained artist, TEED is a satire injected with extra fun to mock the underground cool dudes. On the decks, Orlando is technical brain at work. His live sets always bring an extravagant & deserving hype on the dance floor and often have left the audience in a celebratory mood. Dressed in his Dinosaur costume behind a wall of keyboards, don’t be surprised if he pops a small dinosaur at you.
A neuroscientist producing electronic music, how cool can one get? From taking piano lessons to completing his PHd from university of London, Sam has done it all.
He has always believed that good music on a decent sound system without distractions can take you to places unknown. Sam has always strived to make his gig a fascinating experience, where lasers are employed to draw geometric yet artistic shapes , which are accompanied by a band that unfold his compositions. Surrounded by an intimate setting, this live orchestra can be breathtaking in India.
I think, the phrase “ poetry in motion” is apt to describe what Nils does on stage. Surrounded with a variety of instruments & controllers, this soft-spoken German can mesmerise the crowd with a variety of sounds, right from funky dub to classical. Needless to say his work on the Grand Piano will surely make you levitate. He manages to put his audience at ease with the constant chatter & humour. Soft lights with calm surroundings something like old ruins or a history cladded monument can be the perfect setting for this virtuoso at work.
An explorer in the world of music, Nicolas has slowly embarked on a journey towards improvised sets. The inventor of the concept ‘From Scratch’, Jaar always showcases his samples to a live audience. Starting from an ambient vibe and taking it deeper with a sudden array of percussions & textures, his sets have often taken the audience to a different level. In the past he has collaborated with Dave Harrington under a alias called Darkside, in which the artists are clouded with darkness and traces of smoke & lights come on as per the music. Jaar has the habit of keeping people on his feet and maintain a fluidity in his set.
Hailing from a musical family, Guti is a national hero in Argentina. Learning the piano was a steal for him, as he had to hide his talent for quite some time. In today’s time Guti’s techno & house music is a brand in itself. Sticking to his origin, Guti’s Latin techno is homage to Argentina. His live acts have often left people speechless, where he takes people on a journey around the South Atlantic Ocean. He is one self made man, who has seen a lot in his younger years and yet managing to stay close to his homeland.
Sitting on top of RA’s list of top 40 live acts, Strahil is always seen live with his wide grin. The music side of his brain is always switched on; as he is a regular in performing live even on YouTube. His smile gets wider as he flirts with the bass lines and rhythms. He is known to bring out the best from all the machines, and when he finds the ‘sweet spot’ there is no one stopping him. He is also a juggler between his laptop and the turntable.When he visits India, the audience will never know what is coming next yet they are sure to have several melodic eyes closed moments.
Apart from these gems mentioned above, the music industry is full of such geniuses who have mastered the craft of Live Sets. It’s an absolute treat to watch these artists perform and we hope we get to explore more such showcases in India in the near future.