The synthesizer, the first device to convert electronic signals into musical notes, was invented more than 100 years ago, and people have been losing themselves to dance ever since. Since then, electronic music has been taken to new heights of musical production and engineering feats. The early ’70s and ’80s synth-pop acts of Kraftwerk and Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark blew audiences’ minds when the performers turned magicians and walked offstage, leaving the instruments playing by themselves. Now people are losing their minds to acts like Daft Punk and house music that combines stimulating beats and light performances.
If you’re looking to experience the forward momentum and positive vibe of electronic music, check out the Decibel Festival in Seattle running from September 25 through 29. The monumental gathering of musicians is celebrating 10 years of groundbreaking music, leading-edge multimedia, and visual art from around the world! There will be a ton of conferences and cool art galleries to visit and, so far, 122 national and international artists are confirmed to attend. The show is headlined by pop-electronic producer Moby, but the lineup is stacked. A lot of buzz surrounds Brazil’s Amon Tobin who, according to festival organizer Sean Horton, will take electronic music to another level playing his latest album, ISAM, at the Paramount on Thursday. As you can see from his performance of the album below, hearing ISAM live should be a translucent experience.
“It’s the most exciting booking ever, in electronic music,” Horton said.
For a preview of the festival, check out the videos below, where we’ve added two songs by Odesza (which will be two of the sickest songs you’ll ever hear), awesome videos by the Art Department and Wax Tailor, and a bunch of other artists you need to see at Decibel. Also don’t miss the “Rollercoaster” of a remix by Jimmy Edgar that will have your booty shaking no matter how tightly you’re strapped into your seat!
We asked Odesza about the state of electronic music, Decibel and their latest My Friends Never Die EP:
How far has electronic music come since the festival got started 10 years ago? Is there anything that has changed significantly over the decade?
Electronic music has changed a lot with technology and with that more people being able to make it. Now that you can download a bunch of VSTs and produce a whole song in your bedroom on a laptop, the possibilities are endless. That’s not to say that stuff coming out now doesn’t see a big influence from past electronic movements. House and RnB remixes for example. I think a lot of people, especially producers, like to re-work stuff from their childhood into their current sound. As more past works get re-introduced in a modern way the different hybrid, genre-blending tracks you will get.
In the past 10 years, really the last 5, There’s been a major switch where a remix is almost as important if not more than the original song. Producers are getting a lot more light and a beat can make it’s way onto the radio. It’s a very exciting time to be doing electronic music.
What are your thoughts on Decibel and what its done for electronic music?
We have seen the line-ups of the last few years and Decibel has consistently booked niche-market to big billing electronic acts that we’re fans of so it’s a dream come true for us to play it. Decibel has a done a lot to build a scene in Seattle by bringing over acts from all over the world and consistently supporting local artists. We are just excited to be a part of it!
What inspired such fresh beats and energy on the latest My Friends Never Die EP?
We had been touring for a few months and wanted to create some tracks to play live to get the crowd moving. Originally we weren’t going to release them but we figured it made a nice little EP and it had been a year since we had come out with anything new.
2. Amon Tobin
3. Wax Tailor
4. Jimmy Edgar
7. Art Department (Kenny Glasgow)
8. Green Velvet
9. The Orb
11. Gold Panda
13. Ryan Hemsworth
14. Public Lover
16. Nicolas Jaar
17. Little People