To commemorate the recent twitter battle between Win Butler of Arcade Fire and Deadmau5, I’ve put together 3 of my favorite EDM songs that I’m guessing you haven’t heard before. If you’re left feeling confused after reading the last sentence, I’ll break it down for you. EDM stands for electronic dance music. Within the past 10 or so years, I’ve noticed that indie groups were looking to branch out from the conventional stringed instruments and began to heavily utilize electronic sounds in their music.
The irony is that Arcade Fire is one of the bands that helped pioneer this movement of experimenting with their own sound using electronics (example here). It’s gone over well in the world of indie and artists like Foster the People, Daft Punk, CHVRCHES, and Cut Copy are considered just as indie as the more traditional, stringed instrument-based groups such as The Strokes, Pavement. or the Pixies.
Back to the fabled twitter battle, Arcade Fire frontman, Win Butler, sent out a tweet that simply stated “Shout-out to all the bands still playing actual instruments at this festival” (referring to Coachella). Deadmau5 took offense to the statement and it’s easy to see why; it’s clearly a knock on artists that rely heavily on their power Mac and other accessories to create their sound onstage. Deadmau5 unleashed a couple of response tweets essentially saying that it doesn’t matter what method you use to create you art, good music is good music. You can see the whole story here.
Personally, I side with Deadmau5 on this one. While I see where Butler is coming from, I have fully embraced the EDM movement in Indie. I think it’s great that Indie fans have their own brand of dance music and neither have to lackadaisically sway back and forth while zoning out to the more traditional indie brand of music; or have to pretend to enjoy themselves while dancing it out to this uninspired, lamestream brand of dance music. And artists like Deadmau5 are huge reason why it’s not like that anymore.
1. The Whitest Boy Alive-Golden Cage (Fred Falke remix)
So there you have it folks, now for some under the radar EDM tunes that I’m hoping you’ll enjoy. First off is the Fred Falke remix of The Whitest Boy Alive’s “Golden Cage”. It’s tough not to feel good after hearing this song. It has what seems to be sad lyrics but the beat is uplifting. I haven’t heard much of anything else from these two artists but if they can produce more of this, I’ll give them a closer look.
Prodigy has always been one of my favorite electronic acts and their album The Fat of the Land will always go down as one my favorite albums from the 90’s. Most have probably heard “Firestarter”, “Breathe”, or “Smack my Bitch Up” from this album at some point during their lives but climbatize is favorite of the non-singles from this album. It’s long and doesn’t sound like an EDM song right from the start (starts slow w/ little percussion in the intro), but once it gets moving along it’s a unique and fun blend of synths and percussion instruments. It’s keeps your interest throughout and has a cool outro with all of the instrumentals pushed to the background to give it a sound as if it’s being played far away.
3. Deadmau5-Not Exactly
I didn’t think it would be right to close out this post without including a song by Deadmau5 himself so here’s “Not Exactly”, my favorite track off of album Random Album Title.