Recent years have seen the landscape of techno and house change considerably. The influence of dubstep and the wider notion of bass music have played an enormous role in shifting and developing the established aesthetics, speeds and vibes of modern dance music. These new perspectives and changes have thoroughly diversified these sounds; opening up their trajectories for considerable development by fresh-faced artists with groundbreaking visions. Every now and then a new talent emerges as a leader of these consequential developments.
Locked Groove is one such talent. This young Belgian producer, who is yet to have a release to his name, is already causing serious murmurs and whispers across the board. Despite having only been producing in this vein since the beginning of the year, his hyper-realised concepts of heavy techno and deep house demonstrate a startling balance and natural ingenuity well beyond his years – at a level not seen quite for some time.
Locked Groove’s strength lies in his uncanny ability to shift between the industrial jams of Berghain and the lighter, deeper tones of spritely Chicago house with real guile and finesse. Both sides of his coin carry strong currency, and effectively showcase his strong natural potential as a long-term artist with a bold, ongoing influence – a true crossover threat.
It’s therefore no surprise that none other than Scuba himself has picked up on Locked Groove’s vision and ability, having recently signed him to Hotflush for his debut release, and prominently featuring ‘Drowning’ in his recent installment of the DJ Kicks series.
Scuba’s role as an inadvertent architect of the recent movement towards a wider new form of unadulterated techno and house; what Van de Meutter describes as ‘100%’ techno and house’, is as evident as ever. Hotflush’s steady transition as a label has seen it evolve from foundational breakstep and techno-infused dubstep through to pivotal future-garage; and it’s more recent relocation towards all-out techno and house (through SCB, Scuba and Sigha) has been equally game-changing.
The scouting of Locked Groove proves no different, as the addition of Van de Meutter as its latest breakthrough artist personifies this sonic transition, and spells another new dawn for Hotflush; continuing its legacy as one of the most forward-thinking labels of its time.