We've been putting out a lot of content regarding electronic music genres that's pissed people off lately, but we would like to take this opportunity to extend an olive branch to fans of one music style in particular. Several months ago we published an op-ed on how bass house all sounds the same... Well, the royal "we," anyways, as I was not yet the editor of Magnetic Magazine at the time.
That's not gonna stop me from owning up to our misguided assertion, though. I happen to know firsthand that bass house irrefutably does not all sound the same; as much of a house and techno guy as I am, I've recognized the merit of FQ-sequenced bass lines over four-four beats since Jauz released "Feel The Volume" two years ago, which arguably spawned a wave of West Coast artists who followed suit.
What I will say is this: A lot of the producers who are actually doing interesting things with bass house aren't from L.A. - or even the U.S., for that matter. Considering that this phenomenon has spread to so many parts of the globe, there's a case to be made that it's more than a flash-in-the-pan fad genre.
If you're under the false impression that every bass house track under the sun follows the same carbon copy formula, then do yourself a favor and peruse the following list of artists. If I missed one whom you consider to be on the cutting edge, don't hesitate to let me know by paying a visit to the comments section at the bottom.
7. "Interconnected" - Go Freek
Go Freek are my kind of weird. I mean, they can be your kind of weird, too; I'm not greedy. The Australian "gutter tech" duo prettied up their sound a bit for their latest release on Insomniac Records (which I was lucky enough to see them debut while attending EDC Las Vegas this year) - but for my money, the title track of their March Interconnected EP is where it's at.
6. "Give It Time" - JVST SAY YES and Torro Torro
I've got respect for L.A. producer JVST SAY YES for one major reason: He captioned the preview clip of his collaboration with Torro Torro "2016 Breaks." Don't get me wrong, it's also cool that the two DJ/producers mixed elements of nu-disco into this already outside-the-box track, but for how many times I've heard a syncopated drum pattern in a bass house single, it blows me away that the artists putting them out aren't willing to give the breakbeat genre some much-deserved exposure.
5. "SIAW" - Tchami
It shouldn't be a surprise to any electronic music fan that Tchami is still one of the musical movement's key innovators. We'd already sung this song's praises back when he uploaded it to SoundCloud, but the way that he incorporated the vocal from Blondie's "Rapture" into the arrangement still puts chills down my spine.
4. "Helium" - Wongo
Another Australian artist that's not gonna be your bag if your music taste falls on the basic end of the spectrum is Wongo. This guy gets pretty eclectic with the samples, and his songs aren't what I would call easy listening - but if you have the balls to test a track like "Helium" out on the dance floor, it's all but guaranteed to destroy.
3. "On The Floor" - Defunct! ft. Maid
It might surprise you to learn that bass house isn't all that new of a style. As we've mentioned before, back around the turn of the millennium it was called "speed garage" and then a decade or so ago it re-emerged as "fidget" - and that's when Defunct! began to garner a formidable fan base. Fast forward to 2016, and the title track of their On The Floor EP has put their name in the mouths of a new generation of electronic music fans.
2. "One Hand Up - Cazztek
The last thing electronic music needs is another masked DJ artist project, but quite frankly, anybody who puts out a track like this can wear whatever they damn well please. Cazztek's "One Hand Up" blurs the lines between G house and bass house - and while it's not necessarily the most challenging song from an arrangement standpoint, it more than makes up for that with next-level production values.
1. "Make Me Feel (Broken Mix)" - LO'99
I've discovered very few artists recently whose music has excited me as much as that of LO'99. Yet another Aussie bringing unrivaled danceability to the bass house arena, he somehow manages to invigorate each of his originals and remixes with an underground sensibility that resonates with electronic music fans old and new. "Make Me Feel" is but one track of many that stand as testament to his uncanny brand of bass house - after checking it out, do yourself a favor and cue up the Metronome mix he delivered for Insomniac.com as soon as time permits.