In an era which has essentially heralded the death of the "local electronic scene," it's always refreshing to see a collective of geographically-connected musicians who remain united in vision. Lost Dubs of Denmark, a Danish web-collective of producers and beat-makers who make a variety of deconstructed dance music, do just that on their newest Birthday Compilation, released in honor of the crew's third anniversary. From microdub to grime to trap, the Danes cover a wide array of genres but nonetheless retain a cohesive aesthetic, which is honestly pretty unique.
Focusing on minimalism, LDOD deconstructs the biting saw-wave synths and massive builds of their native Dutch house in the same way that UK dubsteppers deconstructed their more maximal drum & bass forebears. It warms my heart to see a return to minimalism after the maximalist renaissance of late. The genre that these guys do the worst is trap, which is a shame because all this super-maximal trap that we've seen lately is a little boring. The most successful crossover-trap act without question is TNGHT, and they're so successful because they do minimalism so damn well. I'm hoping that LDOD trappers Ollie B, OKAY FUNKY and Crack'A'Wave keep at it, and let go of the twin trap crutches of needless samples and overly-dense sound design, because I'd love to see the minimal aesthetic of the rest of the group as applied to trap music.
Standout tracks include Filip Ja's opener "Adapiforms," a sparse microdub callback to the glitch-hoppers of the late 2000's, which sets the tone for the rest of the comp. And The Blind Eye Creates' "Hell Is Other People" and Unkwon's "Big Rooms" create amazing deconstructed homages to the Dutch house scene, cannibalizing its huge synth builds and vocal samples only to transform them in to something more personal. From the rest, there's wonky electro-funk that's weirdly reminiscent of Com Truise, deep and dark dubstep, and a few less-contemplative remixes. For now, maximalism is in full swing in the electronic music world, but when listeners once again grow tired of airhorn samples and the cycle continues, LDOD will be one of the crew's to watch. Don't worry, they've still got a few airhorn samples too.
Lost Dubs of Denmark
Birthday Compilation [Compilation]
- Lost Dubs of Denmark
- August 23, 2013