From Sean Melody aka 0s0, aka DJ Raid, host of Sonic Umami on Fridays at 9pm PT (2am PT on 4th Fridays)
This list goes to 11: (written while.waiting in car, ignore typos)
Talking with one of the people I have been working with to make Sonic Umami a unique show, I started talking about the top 5 people I think will change the face of dark music in the next five years.
I realized I was slightly caught off guard when asked who else. And answered mainly correct on how I feel, but made a couple of changes. One being that there are around 10 people I see actively changing things. One was a person I got mixed in from another question, about who/what brought me out of retirement as DJ.
So I have seen some posts about this, and I have been asked very similar things over and over across the years so I, decided to actually publish this list.
One disclaimer, this is not about musicians I see changing things this is about the people behind the scenes and this is in no particular order.
I will start off with talking about something, mostly not spoken about PR people and their connection between artists, DJs, writers, etc... This has for decades been either amazing, or gathering the scraps that someone threw out the window.
Being a DJ for approximately 33 yrs and counting, I have dealt with quite a few, most have either been for a specific label, or they go after big clients only. Where as this has brought dome amazing work to me as a DJ, it over shadows all the amazing artists out there, that get next to me no notice, because they either can't afford a high dollar pr, or don't have any idea how to get their music out there.
This is where William Zimmerman steps in.
I am not calling judgement of other PR people, but the sheer volume of amazing music that has come to me for my show (Sonic Umami) through this man in just a few months is amazing.
And there hasn't been a single release he had turned me onto that I do not want to play on my show, but it has actually led me to expanding the show, to showcase and feature so many different amazing artists work.
If you are looking for not just good PR for your project. Talk to this man, his time is going to start getting more and more limited.
This brings me to my next pair of people.
Being part of the underground music community we all know how important compilations and tribute albums are to all, be it goth, metal, industrial, idm, whatever... Comps can completely change the trajectory of an artists years if not career and these 2 people have put out my favorite comps that are not just label specific, and showcase mind boggling amount of talent across many genres.
First off os Chris Halstead of Coitus Interruptus Productions.
If you have not at least gone to a link to one of the amazing tribute albums he has put together for artists ranging from Fad Gadget to Coil, I recommend you go and do it right now. If not purchase all that he has put out from the artists you like.
Each tribute albums is amazingly well put together. From the cover art to the track selection, these are some of the best tribute compilations to come since the Newer Wave series.
Next is James Church of CRL Studios.
It's been years since I have taken part in even submitting music to labels, etc... to participate in a comp. And the industry has changed drastically since that time.
In the last year, I was finally convinced to digitally release all the music I have been sitting on and writing to more success than I would have expected, but that is for another post.
But still hadn't really tried to submit music for a comp, until February of this year. James wasn't the first person I submitted tracks to, but he was the first to respond openly, professional and courteously. He was direct in what was needed and gave a date when thing were actually moving forward.
I bring this up because, this is not the attitude across all sources in the industry, and the comp that came from it is I believe the most important comp for underground music since the Ras DVA: There is No Time comp that changed the sound of so many clubs across the country. The sheer volume of artists on the 5th Wavelength 3 volume comp is staggering and so is the amount of talent. I am beyond proud to be part of this comp (volume 3: Victim 323- Concussed... Actually to be officially released as Noize Kult Revolver, that's a whole other bag of worms.) I recommend getting all three volumes.
This brings me to 4 artists that seems to be infused across the industry or just making a huge impact with the timing and placement of their art. This is by no way an exhaustive list of artists I think are going to make an impact, but specific ones currently shaping the face of the industry in way that we will not just see people wearing, hanging on walls, etc...,but are going to be copied to inspire generations to come.
I am going to start this part out talking about two musician who's as much a visual genius, as they are at orchestration of crazy electronic music projects that are as much art as music.
I am talking about Steven Archer , and his lovely wife Donna Lynch unless you have been living under a rock within the dark electronic music communities you have at least heard of Steven, and his Donna's work in one way or another, be it musically with Egolikenss, and Stone Burner, to the written horror of Donna, to the Paintings of Steven, any much more.
Next bring me to another artist I discovered through his music Mr. Scary Black himself Albie Mason.
Albie is a master communication of many mediums, watching his daily to sometimes hourly creations is one.of the highlights of my day. From gracing the covers to stings of visual meditations and concepts Albie is one to watch for and delight in the fact you are alive to witness it.
The are those artists who define a record label, band, or a generation. Those who have been around know a Wax Trax album cover without second thought, or a 4ad, or hell even Joy Division when you see the art, you don't just see it... You hear it. That's where this next artist is taking things. I already have a collection or albums this artist has done the covers of over the last year mainly for COP international that i see the art I automatically hear the music.
I am speaking of Greg Rolfes.
In the last year Greg has put more art on albums that are the sound on now, then most people do their whole lives.
This multi talented multi medium artist is someone who art we will be seeing across this community for years to come.
So one Dj makes this list simply for their seer dedication to the dark music community world wide, and that DJ Yami Speechie...
Yami's streams, playlists, and sights cover so many different styles from ever.corner of the earth and then some. Yami has something for almost everyone.
I am going to wrap this up with two groups more than specific people.
Zines have been a staple of underground music culture for as long as there has been an underground music community.
The first I am going to cover Ken Magerman and Sounds and Shadows, where as i had a falling out as an administrator with S&S, I still believe Ken is genuinely trying to help and is currently changing the underground dark music community, and has lead to a surprising number of independent artists to find their audiences.
Last but definitely not least is the collective of Sherri and Azy Bats , Maus Corderman and everyone at Obscura Undead.
Obscura undead is doing a modern version of what Fred Berger, John Koviac, and Sean Brennan were doing in the 80's and 90's with Propaganda magazine, and then some.
The people at Obscura Undead in the last year have done more for women in all aspects of the industry as well as covering and playing the most diverse collection of music outside of Yami Speechie.
And to make this complete I have to add Bret Miller and Ear Drum Buzz Radio, Bret has made one.of the most open musical formats I have ever dealt with. The only thing he asks is no wav files, otherwise he lets the DJ's do what they do best, share music with the world.
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