Tag Archives: Moderator

Ten Artists Keeping Trip-Hop’s Eclecticism Alive


Even in its earliest days, trip-hop was always something of a sonic mutant. In the early ‘90s, it fused hip-hop and electronica with nods to jazz, funk, dub, and soul in ways that were comfortingly familiar yet unnervingly alien. Trip-hop’s popularity arguably peaked in the mid ‘90s, as pioneering acts like Portishead, Massive Attack, Tricky, Unkle, and DJ Shadow gained both critical and commercial renown. While the latter may have faded as the new millennium approached, the passing of time hasn’t dulled the influence it provides for countless young acts. Now, at a time when almost every micro-genre and musical amalgam is fair game, artists are mining trip-hop for inspiration as a launchpad for their own musical experiments. By merging hip-hop with everything from IDM to world music, the 10 artists in this list show that trip-hop is still the same vehicle for both artistic exploration and sonic rebellion that it’s always been.

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The Best Beat Tapes on Bandcamp

beat tapes

Ideally, this column is diverse and inclusive in every way. That said, your humble columnist is from L.A. So it’s with little shame and much pride that I selected three releases from Cali-based artists, all of whom put a distinctive spin on the sounds emanating from the city’s perennially talented beat scene. The other tapes come from producers working in locales as disparate as Wisconsin and Germany. You’ll find everything from breezy boom bap to noir-y trip-hop and deftly chopped R&B. Ideally, many beats will align with your tastes, and many more will expand them.

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