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Electronica Frontiersmen

Daedelus. Photo by Todd Cooper.
Daedelus. Photo by Todd Cooper.

In five years, when zombies overrun us, Alfred Darlington is going to look back on these days as the golden age of electronic music. Darlington, better known by the production moniker Daedelus (pictured), tells EW that he would prefer the zombies to be of the slow, mindless variety. 

But regardless of impending zombie attack theories, Darlington is pushing his brand of electronica as far as modern technology allows. “I’m proud of where the electronic sound is going,” he says. “I use a monome and the device is so clever and customizable that I’ve been able to find a voice within it.” A monome is a small box with a button grid that lights up; it acts as a minimalist controller that provides an adaptable computer interface for user needs (from deadmau5 to Imogen Heap).

Daedelus is part of an entire community of Los Angeles-based producers and musical innovators; Flying Lotus and Nosaj Thing are a few names that top the roster. But the Daedelus sound can’t be solely associated with his peers; it is at once an esoteric exploration of the soundscape and an intimate and compelling construct. Daedelus combines atmospheric samples, downbeat rhythms and sweeping synthetics into uplifting tunes that appeal to both the hipster and the intelligent dance music aficionado. 

Also on the bill is Denver-based production duo Two Fresh, who combine elements of hip hop with a catchy take on chiptunes. Their unique twist on electronica has caught the attention of Daedelus, who says they have really found their ground this year. 

Recent come-up Ryan Hemsworth completes the bill with his more hip-hop-focused style. Though similar to Two Fresh, Canadian-based Hemsworth cooks up trap and electronic bootlegs alongside a slew of originally produced jams with such collaborators as hip-hop cohort Squadda B. 

“This will not be your typical night of heavy bass; we’re not trying to hurt you,” Darlington says. “We want to spark a whole lot of different emotions by using a lot of different electronic sounds. There will be a lot of passionate sounds being thrown around.”

Daedelus plays with Two Fresh, Ryan Hemsworth and Samo Sound Boy 9 pm Tuesday, April 2, at WOW Hall; $14 adv., $16 door.