You’ve probably already given up on your New Years resolution of going to the gym more often or attempting the dreaded Dry January yet fear not. Here at Trommel we’re happy to kickstart a resolution for the next 12 months that’s actually enjoyable and far more achievable.
We’ve compiled a list of rising artists who we think are a must-see or whose music should be checked out with every new release email in your inbox during 2020 and beyond. New Years resolutions are best when they’re manageable so we’ve selected 12 for the upcoming 12 months. Don’t let us down!
Garage is back, baby. Except for a lot of people, it never really went away. One such person is Paris-based DJ and producer Alec Falconer who had a blinder of a 2019 in a year which along with 2018, saw UKG transition from guilty pleasure and occasional DJ wildcard to being integrated into almost everyone’s sets and saw prices on Discogs skyrocket.
On the production front, Falconer started the year off with an EP with fellow UKG aficionado Harry Wills on Entity London however it would be the two EPs along with Wills and Rob Amboule as Phone Traxx which would garner everyone’s attention. His DJ sets are a natural reflection of his productions, choppy garage and breaks are spliced with vintage tech-house to reflect the tastes of a DJ who wants to have as much fun as the crowd he’s playing in front of.
After a few years of building up a reputation within Berlin at Darwin’s REEF parties and his own DBRS parties along with Enchanted Rhythms, Dan Beaven kick-started his WAYS party alongside compatriot Enchanted Rhythms and Elissa Suckdog in 2019. Championing more underappreciated sounds within the Berlin ecosystem, digging and spinning the finest 2-step, breakbeat, ’90s tech-house as well as all-round weird and wonderful music.
The tracks Beaven plays never pretends to be something it’s not, it’s unpretentious music and there’s no grandiose breakdowns or melodies but seeing him play, whether at a WAYS party or elsewhere, might be the most fun you have all year. All killer, zero filler.
Ethel is one of the many bright sparks to come out of the Parisian label and collective RA+RE since their inception five years ago and you may recognise RA+RE from some of the rambunctious videos from Cafe Barge that do the rounds regularly on social media. The music Ethel spins is impossible to pin-down in terms of genre but her takes on house and techno are refreshingly unique and full of life despite her record bag mainly compromising of music released over two decades ago.
Berlin gigs where she resides are aplenty at Hoppetosse, Fitzroy and all across the German capital. Ethel’s 2020 started off the small matter of a Sunday session at Fabric with a collab between She Made and RA+RE in which rave reviews were dished out afterwards. Her 2019 saw her bounce between Berlin, Paris and Leeds but more regular European gigs are sure to come for one of the most fun DJs that’s rising up.
French label Forest ill Records released some of 2019’s most engaging and unique sounding music from any scene or genre. The collective are unphased by the need for labelling music with a genre and bounce between enigmatic house, glitchy techno and freaky breaks. Idris Bena’s Pantei Rah EP was no exception to the Forest ill rule and was one of the best EPs released in the calendar year.
There’s already reason to be excited for Bena with an album on the way from his Forest ill, judging by the previews, it’s even more diverse and captivating than his previous EPs. Gigs outside of France are a question of when, not if, considering his producing prowess and originality, you’ll be sure to hear some unreleased bombs if you get to see him.
We were ecstatic when Julian agreed to do a podcast with us and considering the result, we had every reason to be. Very few DJs break into the tightly knit circle of Romanian minimal but there may be a reason for this exclusivity, every talent who breaks through is nothing short of excellent.
Julian’s no exception, being a resident at Club Guesthouse is Bucharest is no small feat and differentiating yourself musically within the realms of minimal can be difficult yet the Romanian has done it by perfectly balancing weirdness, introspection and dance floor functionality in his sets. The new year has already brought us his first EP in three years with ‘Mind Blowing Thoughts’ soon to be released on his own label Eliptic Records.
Berlin-based selector KRN has been on a steady and organic rise over the past couple of years despite completely avoiding the social media promotion rat-race. Regular sets at The Ghost’s parties at Club der Visionaere and aboard Hoppetosse have rightfully earned him an excellent reputation within the German capital as a selector and 2019 saw gigs for European main-players such as London’s Art of Dark and Amsterdam’s VBX.
KRN’s best DJing trait is his versatility, whether that’s playing the warm-up, peak time slot or digging out a record for an exact moment. His record bag contains obscurities any occasion, from blissful breaks to outlandishly peculiar house, maybe even a pitched down trance record, all melded together with excellent mixing precision.
Majkel has become a firm favourite within his local scene of Stockholm along with compatriot Martin Kling and their mmmmusic collective. With the likes of Vera, Vlada and Etienne playing alongside him in the Swedish capital, the word was sure to spread back to Berlin and beyond.
And spread it did, 2019 saw Majkel play at Mutabor in Moscow, RED58 in Barcelona as part of a special mmmmm showcase and also alongside Vlada for the Volks at Club der Visionaere. Seeing Majkel is a hell of a mind trip, the Swede likes his music peculiar and quirky whilst being mixed with Majkel’s signature fast and Zip-esque transitions.
Last year was the year of the Uruguayans came to the forefront. Their fresh re-imaginings of techno, acid and breaks helped bring a plethora of older records back to life whilst their productions continue to challenge how we think the aforementioned genres should sound.
Michelle is one of those producers who challenges musical status quo, the Uruguayan producer burst onto the scene back in 2018 with her album ‘Zocco’ on Nicolas Lutz’s My Own Jupiter label whilst an equally fantastic EP on El Milagro Records swiftly followed. 2019 was a quiet year in comparison, with more Michelle taking her blistering live set on the road but a release on London’s OPIA records still made it’s way to our ears with compatriot Matias Muten and their Eterna Procrastinacion EP.
Quiet years for producers are not always followed by busy years when it comes to releasing music. However, if you were lucky to catch any of Michelle’s live sets in the past 12 months, you’ll be well aware that there’s a bulging selection of music waiting to be released, let’s hope we get some on wax in 2020.
A lovely little tip from our Parisian friends led us to discover Miclea. There are a whole host of DJs unearthing forgotten music from every inch of the musical spectrum nowadays but few are as deep and dedicated as Miclea and his Rakya podcast is a sure-fire testament to that. He’s not tied to one genre, if it’s good music, then it’s in his record bag, and you probably won’t have heard it.
Gigs within Paris and France are the standard for him at this point, but here’s hoping his schedule stretches a bit further geographically in 2020. We need to see how deep his record bag goes.
The Italian DJ/producer first came onto the producing scene back in 2018, releasing his Tutti Tranne Micro.Solchi EP on Riccardo Piazza and Re-Up’s Where We Met label. However it was 2019 where Mosca broke into the wider musical consciousness, an intergalactic bass-loaded EP on Club Vision Records would capture everyone’s attention but it’d be his on La Teoria Delle Stringhe Vol. 1 release on Slow Life and his sets at their subsequent parties where Mosca would begin to leave serious impressions.
There’s the excitement of a second EP coming on Slow Life in early 2019 and artists who string together multiple great releases often see their bookings increase. Not just a producer, his sets are much like the Slow Life crews’, fun, inspiring and channelling that pure party spirit. If Mosca’s anywhere near you, he’s a must-see.
Ukranian club Closer had been rapidly rising up everyone’s ‘favourite clubs’ list for a few years now but 2019 was the year it fully went international. So it’ll most likely only be a matter of time before their trusty residents go international, too and SE62 is one of the Closer residents flying the flag the highest.
His 2019 consisted of continuing his Closer residency as international club-goers came back to their respective countries with stories of his sets, there was a debut at Robert Johnson for HardWorkSoftDrink and gigs in various spots through western Europe. In 2020, his year starts off with a bang playing for Melliflow and Closer’s Winter Trip 4 at Hoppetosse where his reputation for deep-digging dark and forgotten sounds will no doubt impress.
Another associate of The Ghost but there’s fanboy club going on here. The year of 2019 was truly Truly Madly’s, word of his boisterous sets quickly spread via The Ghost’s parties and regular gigs at The Pickle Factory among other London-based sets. A deep digger of records in the purest form, after decades of collecting records Madly began to break out in the London circuit with an abundance of both jaw-dropping and head-spinning music.
For 2020, There’s the small matter of his newly founded residency at The Pickle Factory with DJ Sprinkles already announced. Whether he’s supporting, headlining, playing five minutes down the road or playing an hour away, be sure to see him. You won’t hear the same tune twice.
Considering the aforementioned musical talent, starting and finishing a New Years resolution doesn’t seem so bad, does it?
More info on Dan Beaven
More info on KRN