10 Maltese Electronic Music Producers You Need To Know About
Get to know the sound of the Maltese underground.
1. N.d / Hail Blk
N.d seems to only have one intention: to drag you from your senses and take you deep down into his chambers, where you will be subject to a heavy dosage of the industrial rhythmic progression which underlines the overall sound of his genre.
In 2015, he started his own label Hail Blk, and has played live in some of the finest clubs around Europe, including Berlin's Tresor .
2. Duo Blank
Duo Blank is the legendary duo brainchild of Edwin Balzan and Frank Cachia that started as a techno live act back in the 90s. In 1999, they released the album Hectic Electric on their label Noise Alliance. It took thirteen years for the second full length album to arrive, but that's what happened in 2012, and this time, they went a bit far from the techno sound and produced an ode to an era they love; the 80's.
Duo Blank use a vast range of analogue and digital synthesisers alongside their huge modular system .
3. Owen Jay
Owen Jay is a producer and DJ who has refused to compromise anything about his sound for two decades now. He started off as a techno DJ and producer, releasing the first Maltese techno album which is still relevant to this date amongst the local electronic music scene. Over the course of time, his sound got deeper and more refined and this brought him to starting his own label Batti Batti in 2009.
Since then, the label has released 27 EPs, and Owen also released music on labels like Underground Quality and Minuendo Recordings.
4. Brian James
A name locally synonymous with dark and deep sounds, Brian James is a DJ that shaped the underground sound of Malta. He has released several EPs throughout the years and played some of the most memorable sets techno locally ever witnessed.
Brian James runs the infamous Unfocused nights, the epitome of techno nights in Malta .
It's amazing to think that anonymous projects can still successfully work in tiny countries like Malta where everyone knows each other, and DLAM is one such case. A collaborative work between 4 anonymous local artists, DLAM released an EP back in 2011 under the label Pinkpube.
Five years later, there are still no news about them or any new releases.
With his passion for the acid sound, Neil Hales has pretty much earned himself the title of the local guru of acid house music as Acidulant. With his extensive collection of vintage gear, he continuously releases and plays music worldwide.
His latest 2016 release on Balkan Vinyl has actually seen a collaboration with alternative scene video company Imitosis for a music video, earning him just shy of 2,000 views in a couple of weeks.
Cloned is the project of Neil Spiteri, a young new producer who has already produced music for Midgar Records, Haar and other labels.
His releases were instantly recognised by a lot of artists and people in the scene and Cloned has become yet another household name in the underground electronic music scene.
Ayrton Zammit is a very young producer who has already released tracks that have been supported by international DJs. His deep and hypnotic sounds help him to be hailed by many in the scene as the future of Maltese techno.
Llimbs is another project somewhat shrouded in mystery. What we do know is that this anonymous project is by a producer that has been producing music under different names for a couple of year, and that his debut release on Hail Blk was actually played and acclaimed by a number of people, even if not necessarily within the underground electronic scene. The song above, for example, has also been played in some of the heavier parties for the alternative rock scene.
Definitely wanting to start big, Llimbs debuted his live performance under this alias at the legendary Tresor.
10. Sonitus Eco
Sonitus Eco is the project of Justin Meli, who has beenproducing music under different aliases for this past decade. Meli has released music on various international labels, releasing his debut album on silent season back in 2011. In 2016 he started his own label, Haar Records with Serial Depth.
Sonitus Eco constantly crosses borders between techno , ambient and dub .