Celebrate Canada Day with some bangers from a surprisingly electronic nation. Have a nice day, eh!
Ever since his single "Faxing Berlin" demolished the pre-pubescent Beatport charts of 2006, Joel Zimmerman AKA Deadmau5 hasn’t slowed down for even a second. Donning his famous trademark mouse mask during shows he has easily become one of electronic music’s best known artists. His trolling on twitter and famous (and authentically Canadian) Tim Horton’s coffee runs with other artists have only added to his online persona. Deadmau5’s musical style has proven successful regardless of what he does and his technical skill in the studio garners praise on a consistent basis. Love him, or hate him, the mau5 has impossible shoes to fill.
Having grown up in Windsor, Ontario, Richie Hawtin had a very short distance to cross south into the US and revolutionise the Detroit techno scene. Over his very long career, Richie’s ‘Plastikman’ moniker became synonymous with many different streams of techno and minimal. He founded two influential labels: Plus 8 and M-nus and has set up an unparalleled live experience titled ‘ENTER’ in Ibiza which even features a sake bar! An entire book could be written on this dance music titan so we’ll leave it at that.
Having resided and impacted music scenes in Ottawa, Vancouver, and Montreal, Max Graham has earned his stripes in dance music not just in the ‘Great North’ but around the world. His appetite for 6-hour sets started in Ottawa in the early 90’s and has continued with his ‘Cycles’ tour today. The ‘Cycles’ concept is now a newly minted imprint and although the pioneer has left Armin van Buuren’s Re*Brand (Armada) Records, his contribution to progressive house, trance, techno and everything in-between will without a doubt continue.
Apart from being half of Chromeo’s younger brother (also on this list), Alain Macklovitch better known as A-Trak is yet another talented Canadian with a particular knack for dance music. His skills as a turntablist earned him the honour of being Kanye West’s personal tour DJ and his innovation in the studio eventually paved the way for his “Duck Sauce” project with the legendary Armand Van Helden. A pretty impressive resume if we might say so.
The electro-funk duo from Montreal have become a household name in Canada for anybody who has somewhat of a eclectic taste in electronic music and hasn’t been living under a rock. Their ultra-unique musical style combines, hip-hop, nu disco, electro, and styles that we don’t yet have a name for. The childhood friends often joke about themselves as being “the only successful Arab/Jewish partnership since the dawn of human culture”. Next time you’re at a house party or club in Canada, whip out your trusty Shazam app and count on zoning in on a bouncy Chromeo cut.
The dubstep/electro-house duo consisting of Dylan Mamid (DC) and Zach Rapp-Rovan (Hooks) originate from the Canadian metropolis of Toronto and have been producing barrier breaking beats together for more than a decade. Known for incredibly energetic sets, the duo attracted the attention of Diplo some time back and have become a permanent part of his Mad Decent roster.
Claire Boucher AKA Grimes was catapulted into stardom in what seems no time at all. The Vancouverite started making a name for herself while living in Montreal and playing underground shows with her friends. Since then the Grimes R&B synth-pop hysteria has reached new heights globally and Claire has achieved an impressive number of feats (excluding her massive fan base and chaotic tour schedule) which include touring with Diplo, Skrillex, Lana Del Ray and gaining praise from the New York Times, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone and Vogue. Oh and lets not forget the most controversial Boiler Room in history.
A veteran of Above & Beyond’s legendary Anjunabeats label, Colin Fisher also known as Soundprank is one of the most consistent producers in the progressive house/trance game. While not known to tour very often, his skill in the studio is unmatched and has proven himself across various styles and genres. If you have ever picked up an Anjunabeats compilation then you have surely heard this wizard’s fine work.
Adam K has been an influencer of progressive house music for almost a decade now with much of his notoriety coming from his collaborations with lifelong friend Soha. Adam K’s mastery of sound design and keen ear for the melodic sphere has earned him tremendous support from Pete Tong, Mark Knight, Gareth Emery, Armin van Buuren, Tiesto and many more. His imprint Hotbox Digital has become a forefront for modern house music and shows no indication of slowing down.
Definitely a name to look out for, this veteran of renowned Progressive label Silk Music has been carving a name for himself with melodic dance music’s elite for a number of years. Canadian sensation Nigel Good's hyper-modern take on melodic progressive house has earned him international acclaim and regular support from Above & Beyond, Max Graham, Jaytech, Solarstone, Myon & Shane 54, Matt Darey, and many more.
Taelor Deitcher better known as Felix Cartal calls Vancouver home but given how often he is rocking nightclubs and festivals around the world that might be difficult to claim these days. His beginnings in EDM started with him opening for headline acts such as Justice and MSTRKRFT before becoming immensely popular on online music blogs. The 28 year old is signed to Steve Aoki’s Dim Mak label and has released two studio albums since 2009.
Words by Jon Davidescu
You can listen to bangers by all of these talented Canadians, and more, right here on Ministry Radio.