The UK’s biggest dance music festival is once again packed with dance music’s biggest names. But it’s not just about headliners like The Prodigy, Tiësto, Hawtin, Guetta and Avicii. Here’s our pick of the freshest artists and DJs making their Creamfields debut this year.
Annie Mac Presents, Saturday
Since American-born Baauer’s debut release shot to critical acclaim on Hudson Mohawke’s Lucky Me label in August 2012, he has embarked on a global invasion. With ‘Harlem Shake’ racking up countless views and a potent collaboration, ‘Higher’, with mega-hit producer Just Blaze, at 24 Baauer is one of the most exciting new talents around. His remix of Disclosure’s ‘You And Me’ showcases his unique production panache, consisting of half-time percussion, booming sub-bass and unforgettable vocal samples – one reason he’s remixed the likes of The Prodigy, Nero, Chase & Status and Mixmag DJ Lab favourite Ryan Hemsworth.
Riva Starr Presents Snatch, Silent Disco, Friday
This anonymous duo from Berlin has been the talk of the underground for quite some time. Although many deep house producers look to old funk, soul and jazz records, Claptone have found their natural muse in the signature sounds of 1990’s golden era hip hop. Sure, Claude VonStroke and the other Dirtybird Players have been inspired by hip hop too, but Claptone are doing it in a much more direct manner. Tracks like the Wu-Tang Clan-inspired ‘Cream’ and stunning latest release ‘Wrong’ have been gaining support in Europe and America from the likes of Amine Edge, Round Table Knights, Kevin Over and the mighty A-Trak.
ELI & FUR
Nation in Association with Mixmag, Sunday
Eli & Fur are both 23 and from London. Friends since college, singer-songwriter Eli and design and modern art fanatic Fur have created a strong sonic identity, melding Chicago and contemporary house influences, and have been playing gigs across the UK and as far as Singapore. Their latest offering, the ‘Nightmares’ EP, has been remixed by Jimmy Edgar and is a must-hear.
Unit 7 presents WRHSMUSIC, Silent Disco, Friday
T Williams is no newcomer to dance music, having been signed at 17 to Jon E Cash’s Black Ops Records. Cherry-picking influences from across the underground, whether it’s UK funky, grime or deep house, his dynamic panned snare hits and riding hi-hats take the listener on a nostalgic trip through 90s garage, all virtuouso basslines amid melodic vocals. Latest track ‘Invasion’ further fortifies his position as one to watch.
Annie Mac Presents, Saturday
Graduating from an internship at Rinse FM to helming Saturday’s key 4–6pm slot and touring with Annie Mac, 21-year-old Lucy Monkman’s eclectic style ranges from deep house to underground grime. In 2012 she set up ZOO Music, a personal outlet for productions and unsigned tunes that are sent her way. The first release was tribal banger ‘Needs To Be Said’ from Toyc & Zulu.
Pryda Friends, Saturday
A former staffer at London’s BM Soho record store who’s now resident in Berlin (and a regular at clubs like Berghain), George Fitzgerald has been behind some of the most critically acclaimed releases of the past few years. Tracks like ‘Child’ and ‘Beats Me’ mix chart appeal with underground pedigree, and he’s just at home creating 4x4 stompers like ‘Nighttide Lover’ for Scuba’s label ‘Hotflush’, as he is curating his Man Make Music imprint, aimed at vinyl purists.
Richie Hawtin Presents Enter, Sunday
Like his mentor Richie Hawtin, 24-year-old techno producer Joel Boychuk grew up between Canada and his main home in Detroit. Since then he’s played all over the world, from Fabric and Amnesia to Tenax in Florence and Europe’s biggest festivals. Yet another versatile young star, he worked on the Plastikman Live tour back in 2010/2011 and most recently remixed Greg Pidcock for Hot Creations.
HOT SINCE 82
All gone Pete Tong, Saturday
Barnsley-born Daley Padley delivers heavy-hitting, melodic, deep and techy house. His signature style is contagious and boasts an array of influences after several years engrossed in Leeds’ thriving house scene. “I like to do my own thing, I’m not into making loads of DJ friends or anything like that… I just want to make good music,” is Hot Since 82’s philosophy, and with support from figures as diverse as Richie Hawtin (he’s playing Enter @ Space three times this summer), Carl Cox and Jaymo & Andy George’s brilliant Moda Black, it’s working extremely well so far.
Unit7 Presents Wrhsmusic, Silent Disco, Friday
Laurence Bake is London- based Citizen, and his nostalgic 90s house sound is equally at home in both underground and commercial arenas – no mean feat, especially since he’s already sampled the world’s biggest female artists, Adele and Beyoncé. But then his sound is not defined by its influences; instead, it’s a perfect formula that contrasts big- room crescendos with vocal stabs and rolling synth chords. Citizen was responsible for the first release on Madtech, ‘Deep End’, a record that laid the foundation for the label’s aesthetic, a melancholic airy dynamic attached to a skeleton of booming 808s and toms. No wonder Skream, Benga and Benji B have all given him the stamp of approval on Radio 1.