It’s the simplest social media revolution ever – bombard the Internets with music tips, not trolling. Objekt tweeted out his latest Bandcamp haul, and let me just add – “aye, sir.”
Producers are opting out of the sticky ooze of streaming, algorithms, and industry muck, choosing instead to find music the old-fashioned way – hey, here’s a list of stuff I found. And there’s a concerted effort among even big-name festival headliners to promote paying for downloads, with a decided emphasis on fan-favorite, artist-bel
Objekt is a special sort of headliner; playing massive mainstages, but constantly surprising with risky, gutsy moves even there. He also has a tendency to show up at tiny venues for love – as he did recently with Berlin’s TRADE at Ohm, where I caught a jaunty broken trip. And, as here, he’s also a steadfast champion of eclectic underground stuff and is outspoken about his choices.
I bring up Objekt because I have been digging a lot of the same stuff lately. That’s not some promo list or algorithm or cool kids’ club; these people are making a splash via word of mouth. I mean, this isn’t representative of all that’s awesome – I’m digging more into the Philippines and
Emptyset live were a highlight for me already, having watched them rattle the walls of a Latvian warehouse at Kontaktor Festival in Riga in June – and then they’ve gone and done this excellent full length:
We already talked about Loraine James on Hyperdub:
Rui Ho is really excellent:
I hope to talk more about Dawn Of The Failed Units, a new international imprint helmed by Berlin’s Carne alongside Daniel Ruane from Manchester. Smog has an excellent “post-gabber” debut – see a detailed writeup on The Ransom Note. That’s Paolo Combes, who co-founded the
The Antwood remix is already streaming, the rest shortly:
And, sorry, embeds are weird so you’ll see that twice, but also – Blawan remains at the forefront of techno, so if it’s all you listen to, still a good choice:
I have been thoroughly enjoying the music coming out of Shanghai ever since I got to stop through there in April. That very much includes the wonderful production work of 33EMYBW, who has also been doing some superb remix work lately – more on that soon – and the
Check out the label page:
And there’s more:
One of the great things about Bandcamp is that it makes it uncommonly easy to keep up with great new stuff to love. If you choose the ‘subscribe’ option when you follow a label or buy music, you’ll have more latest releases delivered to your inbox. So I think part of what is keeping Bandcamp users loyal is, the more people acquire, the more the service is full of new music to appreciate. And in turn, that keeps those producers making new music.
That sounds obvious or like some sort of infomercial for Bandcamp, but it’s important to note that major streaming services don’t work like this. These tools drive more and more “engagement” in the form of streams, but there’s very little feedback to the people making the music, let alone money. Bandcamp can at least cover making cassette tapes or paying for mastering, even in fairly underground stuff, and grows from there – plus people get real feedback on what they’re releasing. And there isn’t the kind of algorithmic intervention pushing people from their human, personal choices toward whatever the service thinks they should want. Services like Traxsource and Beatport do allow following, too, and can offer the same benefits, but those tend to be more genre-specific – Bandcamp is far more eclectic, and not limited to dance music.
Featured image: 33EMYBW by Marco Microbi, at CTM Festival.