Thursday, December 23, 2010

Anticipation builds for James and James

They may not be able to afford a decent photographer, but these two men are being tipped for big things in 2011.

On the left we have Mr James Blake. I've written about him a couple of times (here and here) and yesterday, his forthcoming, self-titled debut album leaked online. Polydor instantly issued a "we will hunt you down and beat you with a cricket ball in a sock" warning to everyone who'd received a watermarked copy of the record. And also to some people who hadn't, just in case.

Still, leaks are a sure sign of feverish anticipation - and not without reason, because James Blake is officially "a good thing". His roots are in dubstep, but he has much broader horizons. Incorporating soulful vocals, twisted samples, and bowel-tickling bass, his songs are at once abstract and full of emotion.

I haven't downloaded the leaked record because I am an honest person (and also because my PC has gone nuts). But here's a video of him performing album track The Wilhelm Scream at the Royal Northern College of Music last week. It's sublime.

James Blake - The Wilhelm Scream

The man on the right is another dubstep-but-not-dubstep artist called James... He is 27-year-old Jamie Woon, a Brit-school graduate whose mum used to sing backing vocals for Stock Aitken and Waterman.

His oeuvre is dusky, sepia-toned electronica, and his current single is the gorgeously sedative Night Air.

Jamie Woon - Night Air

Isn't it nice to see the return of intelligent, emotional dance music?

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