In an interview with Miami New Times earlier this year, Pete Tong, one of the world’s most renowned individuals in the electronic dance music scene, discussed where the music was presently at, where it was going and his own personal predictions for the future. More specifically, and for our purposes here today, he talked about the rise of the Deep House genre.
Pete Tong is a staple name in the dance music community. As the host of the long-acclaimed BBC Radio 1 program The Essential Mix as well as Evolution, a new internet radio show on IHeartRadio (which premiered in 2012), as well as having a lengthy history as a producer, label frontman and DJ. Tong is fully submerged in the scene, on a global level. His opinions are held in the highest regard because he’s a man with his fingers directly on the pulse of the community.
When asked what he thought were some of the most significant trends in electronic dance music this year, Tong made special note of Deep House, as well as some of the artists leading the movement, including Duke Dumont, Hot Since 82 and my personal favorite; Gorgon City.
Now fast forward to just last month, where Ill Methodology produced an article claiming Dubstep was dead. The article was based solely on the Beatport sales charts and the top selling genres of 2014. And although music sales and a genre’s apparent popularity usually have no validity when it comes to the fans opinions themselves, the article stirred up mad controversy among bass heads across North America.
I’m not 100% convinced that Dubstep is indeed “dead.” I was heavily involved in the trenches of Trance and its sub genres when Dubstep first appeared on my radar back in 2010. I found it distasteful, musically unsound and honestly– just annoying. But I firmly believe that with a little personal investigation, all genres can present unique qualities, as well as artists or songs that we can relate to and even enjoy. Presently, there are now a handful of Dubstep producers that are on constant rotation in my music library. I’ve come to really respect the genre and have found that some of the best live performances I’ve been to have been hosted by Dubstep DJ’s.
But we’re not talking about Dubstep today, we’re talking about the same thing Pete Tong was talking about back in April; Deep House. According to Ill Methodology’s same article, Deep House was king this year, ranked as the highest selling genre of 2014. It seems Tong knew exactly what he was talking about.
Now, there could be a thousand reasons for why this is. Some have offered the idea that Deep House fans are generally of a higher age, thus apart of a higher income bracket and more likely to spend money on music. You could even say that Europe’s dance music scene, one where House music as always reigned supreme, has finally begun to make waves in North America. In the end, the recent popularity of Deep House is probably due to a variety of different factors but I think above all else, it’s due to a new surge of creativity and innovation in the genre by a handful of up-and-coming producers.
The Deep House we’re hearing today is urbanized and fresh. Artists like Gorgon City, are helping provide and expand this new twist on one of dance music’s most antiquated styles.
Gorgon City is an English music production duo consisting of Kye Gibbon and Matt Robson-Scott. They’ve had a series of big hits, originating with “Real”, a collaboration with singer-songwriter Yasmin, then “Intentions” which dropped in 2013, “Ready For Your Love” which premiered in January of this year and finally “Imagination”, their latest single to be released.
Gorgon City does not prescribe to a standardized version of House music. There’s a strong Garage feel to a lot of their tracks and their recent collaboration(s). Several diverse vocalists that they have worked with have helped infuse their music with a certain originality that can only be created through collaboration. It’s a distinct take on Deep House, and in my opinion, its helping curate a serious interest in the genre itself.
Their debut album “Sirens”, which was originally slated to drop in June of this year, will finally be released in October. Tracks like “Real”, “Ready For Your Love”, and “Here For You” all carry that vocally led, garage-house feel that make them incredibly unique. I saw these guys at Shambhala this year and was extremely impressed by their overall presence and sound. I’d jump at the chance to see them again.
There are dozens of other artists leading this new popular Deep House movement and whether it will have longevity into 2015 is anybody’s guess. Maybe Dubstep will make a 360 and find itself back on top or maybe other genres like Drum and Bass and Trance will find a resurgence of popularity in the up-coming months. None-the-less, the creativity and new, urbanized spin on the Deep House sound that artists like Gorgon City are creating, is helping the genre find traction among new and old fans alike.
Article By: Kassie Mitchell
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