Scottish DJs and Producers 2009



The sound of 2009

Henry Northmore talks to a cross section of Scottish DJs and producers about the trends in clubbing they predict for 2009

House music was born in the 80s and morphed into techno under the guiding hands of the Detroit masters. More recently, drum & bass and electro-clash swept though clubland whilst grime and dubstep have are the newest configuration of dance beats, not to mention a myriad of other styles and subgenres that have rocked club culture. But what can we expect pumping out the bassbins in 2009?

Silicone Soul’s Craig Morrison predicts ‘there is definitely a return to a more classic house sound.’ George MacDonald (aka G-Mac from Manga, Bass Syndicate and Edinburgh record shop Underground Solushn) agrees: ‘Deep House – warm and musical club tracks – have re-emerged as a reaction to the nihilism of minimal house,’ he says, but also sees a rise in popularity of instrumental hip hop, fidget house and dubstep also suggesting that: ‘Drum & bass is re-discovering jungle styles and party vibes.’ Soma’s Dave Clarke also sees a return to house but doesn’t count out the influence of techno.

Already established genres are evolving and combining to create new sounds. ‘I am not convinced that a brand new genre will become prominent in 2009,’ explains Mixed Bizness’ Boom Monk Ben, ‘but I think there will be some scenes that grow in prominence.’ He sees an emergence of the electro dancehall sound: ‘I think you’ll start to hear more of this wamped up ragga style cross into the mainstream.’ While the appeal of ‘the glitchy beats scene’ will continue to gather steam, ‘appealing to hip hop heads and techno freaks alike.’

We might be heading into a more fractured era in clubbing, with music splitting into yet more specialised incarnations. ‘There will be yet more subgenres and more diversity in dance music and club playlists, as mini-genres bubbling underground crossover,’ adds Hobbes from Trouble foreseeing a rise in new permutations of disco. ‘There’s also that funny little genre called “skwee” from Sweden and Finland, which is basically just like electro-funk/R&B etc with added sub-bass, and other, more bass-oriented, permutations of the dubstep/drum & bass/breakbeat formulae. Basically there will be a lot more bass.’

As you’d expect, Twitch from Glasgow tastemakers Optimo has suitably leftfield ideas of what he’d like to see tearing up clubland. ‘I think the next breakthrough genre will be anarcho-synth, because it’s time to forget the past, move on from the mediocrity of recent years, spit on the grave of electro, defy conformity and kick out the jams.’

In terms of names to watch in the electronica scene, most people seem to be firmly behind local lads Rustie and Hudson Mohawke. But DJs/producers as diverse as Popof, Jet Project, Spencer Parker, Toddla T, Linkwood Family, Heartbreak, Johnny D, Gary Beck and Sei A are being tipped for success.

However, as house maestro Huggy (Stereotype) points out ‘Electronic music always seems to take a u-turn once it crosses over into the mainstream, so you really never know what’s round the corner. Just keep your ear to the ground and anything’s possible.’

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