Dance and Electronic 2012: Plays Here, Stays Here* (*For Now)
Published Dec 14, 2012
In recent years, a slew of Canadian electronic music producers have relocated to London, UK or to electronic mecca Berlin. Here are five rising producers who are helping build the healthier-than-ever Canadian electronic music ecosystem.
Jacques Greene (Montreal)
This mysterious young producer has been gathering buzz for his distinctive blend of R&B, house and bass. Greene (pictured above) came to prominence in 2011 with singles on Glasgow's LuckyMe, an appearance at MUTEK and remixes for artists including Radiohead. In 2012, the Montrealer hit the ground running with the launch of his Vase imprint as well as production work for his buddy ANGO.
It's widely discussed that Ontario-raised producer Jeremy Rose originally produced the first three tracks for Abel Tesfaye's the Weeknd, but with hatchets at least partly buried, Rose has moved on to solo work as Zodiac. A debut EP was released on Vase this fall and standout track "Come," featuring Jesse Boykins III, received overwhelming support. Rose has recently signed a writing deal with UK producer Paul Epworth and is currently recording in London but don't worry, he hasn't moved there... yet.
Nautiluss is the moniker of ex-Thunderheist producer Graham Bertie. The Toronto-based musician has released two solid EPs this year for Montreal's Turbo Recordings as well as a superb MUTEK performance. The sound of Nautiluss is dark, brooding club techno blended seamlessly with house and elements of UK bass. Like many in 2012, Bertie has a pleasing disregard for genre boundaries, putting whatever feels right into the mix.
Ryan Hemsworth (Ottawa)
Following the success of his "Charly Wingate" video, and his 2011 release No Plans, which featured on SPIN's Top 10 R&B albums of the year, Halifax-raised electronic hip-hop producer Ryan Hemsworth dropped his first EP, oddly titled Last Words, in August on Wedidit Collective, including remixes from the likes of Shlomo and Chicago's Supreme Cuts. Taking influence from Gucci Mane and Southern hip-hop, Hemsworth got attention for his remixes of Grimes and, unofficially, Frank Ocean.
Max Ulis (Vancouver)
Vancouver-based Max Ulis is a prominent figure on the West coast's emerging bass and dance music scene. Having performed both at MUTEK and New Forms festivals as one half of house duo Larry James (with Ryan Trann, aka Inkwell), Ulis also released the single Eastsiders in collaboration with Self Evident. Ulis co-manages the label Tenpin and is currently working on a collaboration with Robbie Slade of Humans.