Duke Dumont thinks that the 'electronic album is almost dead' but we think it's alive and kicking
We love Duke Dumont, we released his No.1 hit "Need U (100)" on our label back in 2013 and we've been big fans of him and Blasé Boys Club ever since. But when we read in his interview with The Evening Standard that he thinks that "the electronic music album is almost dead", we had to respectfully call bullshit.
While we agree that dance music and the studio album have not always been a happy marriage, in fact we think that a lot of electronic artists put too much emphasis on the album concept, to say that the electronic album is dead is a big mis-step. 2015 especially, has proved somewhat of a vintage year for electronic albums. And to prove it, we've collected some of our absolute favourites from the past year together and talked about how much we like them.
If an artist doesn't want to make an album, that's absolutely their prerogative, but they shouldn't discount a huge facet of dance music culture as being 'almost dead', indeed we hope that if this list proves anything, it's that the electronic album is in rude health in 2015 and long may it continue!
Julio Bashmore - Knockin' Boots
It's been a long time since we first lost our collective shit to "Battle For Middle You" the interim years have been a mixed bag for Bashmore. "Au Seve" may have put him on the map, but it also made a lot of people tired of his sound. He was going to need to really pull it out of the bag for his full length. And pull it out he did, Knockin' Boots is one of the smoothest, happiest albums we've ever heard. It's future disco mashed with the UK's very distinct take on house in 2015 and it reminds of us of the first time we ever listened to Mylo's Destory Rock n Roll - which is pretty much one of the biggest compliments we could ever give.
Jamie XX - In Colour
The debut solo album from Jamie is a hot contender for this year's Mercury Award and stands as a shining appraisal of UK dance music in 2015. Taking in a range of styles and sampling voiceovers from the glory days of rave and hardcore. This is Jamie xx's love letter to dance music and it just so happened to turn out as one of the most vital records in recent memory.
Seven Davis Jr - Universes
A left-field choice from a left-field guy. Universes didn't quite have the dancefloor appeal that singles "One" and "P.A.R.T.Y" managed so effortlessly, but as an album it's an always-interesting journey through the mind of a true artist. In Universes, Seven proves that he's far more than a DJ, far more than a producer, far more than a singer and far more than the sum of his parts.
The Chemical Brothers - Born In The Echoes
Along with the long awaited debuts from Julio, Jamie and Seven, 2015 proved a vintage year for dance music comebacks. We saw full length albums from Groove Armada, Prodigy and The Chemical Brothers. And while some of the comeback albums proved more miss than hit, Born In The Echoes was a dancefloor-focused tour de force, with a few crossover anthems nestled in there as well - exactly what a dance music album should be.
SBTRKT - Wonder Where We Land
While not technically from 2015, or really 100% dance music, the sophomore effort from SBTRKT proves, perhaps more than any of the other efforts mentioned here, that electronic music can own the album concept. Wonder Where We Land is an album like few others, with songs of varying length and style merging together to give it the feel of a DJ mix, yet each strong is still strong enough to stand on its own feet as a single.
22 Sep 2015