MEOKO Selection: 20 artists to watch in 2020
- Published on Thursday, 16 January 2020 09:01
2019 was a great year for music from both new and emerging artists as well as the usual suspects! 2020 looks as though things are going to be taken up a notch too as we see new names entering the scene on an almost daily basis. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, we’ll leave that up to you to decide...
Regurgitated ideas, stagnant genres and too much of ‘the same’ are lines we hear far too often from people as artists tend to stick to ‘safe’ sounds, ‘safe’ track ideas and ‘safe’ structure because they know it works well and they’re afraid to push the boundaries and break the mould for fear of it not being right.
But what is right…?
In this guide we’ll be taking a look at the artists we’ve been keeping a close eye on over the last 12 months (and longer in some cases) and highlight them as people to keep an eye out for in 2020! This guide isn’t to be treated as an ‘up and coming’ list like you might be used to seeing in other places, as some of the artists listed here are more established than others. Yes, some are fairly new to the scene but generally, these are artists we’re predicting to do great things at the start of this new decade…and hopefully further into the future!
Alfie Jack appeared on the scene late on in 2019 but is someone who should definitely be on your radar for 2020! Working closely with another rising star from Manchester, Josh Baker, the lads have been cooking up a storm in the studio with lots of music to come! With an EP already out on Archie Hamilton’s Moscow Records and two more upcoming Eps on Burnski’s ‘Constant Sound’ sub label, ‘Aesthetic’ as well as another confirmed EP on You&Me. Alfie Jack has joined the ranks of the Manchester party starters ‘You&Me’ who have also been making waves with their events all over the city so expect to see his name on more event posters over the next 12 months.
A couple of festival slots are already in the diary for summer 2020 with more info on those coming soon and an exciting collaboration project with fellow You&Me regulars Seba&Emile which will focus on the deeper sound house (think small hours kinda’ vibe). Solo wise, he has a couple of EP's signed and ready to go and has already gained support from the likes of Enzo Siragusa, Archie Hamilton, Ben Balance, Fabe and Okain amongst others!
Barut had an amazing 2019 and 2020 looks like another great year for the Miami based DJ and producer. His 4 track EP on the Botanic Minds Sunset Series towards the back end of the year really stamped his name on the scene and gained some fantastic support from the likes of Barac, Alci, NTFO, Sepp, Nu Zau and many more! Another 4 track EP on the ever-impressive Sintope came earlier in the year, make sure you keep an eye out for his return on the imprint later in 2020. With some nice gigs lined up and a mini tour in the diary for later in the year, Barut is a name to keep at the forefront of your minds!
BRYZ is another name to add to the list of impressive artists to come out of Romania. Whilst being on the scene for a number of years now and a well-respected artist, he is someone we have earmarked to have continued success in the new decade. With previous releases on labels such as Samani, Tzinah, ID Music, Wizz, Moira, Welter, Lethal Script amongst others, his hypnotic sound is one you’ll quickly fall in love with, just like I did! Keep an eye out for BRYZ throughout 2020, you won’t be disappointed!
Camelia is another artist who had a fantastic 2019 and 2020 is looking just as bright for the US based talent. Having played in Turkey, Mexico and the Dominican Republican for the first time, he’ll soon be able to add some more worldwide destinations to the list as the year goes on.
His EP on Fake Society was a real standout achievement and if its something you haven’t heard yet then I suggest you check it out right now! He’ll return to the label later in the year and will tour Europe in February so if you get check to go see him then we’d highly recommend it!
Casey is someone I’ve known personally for a number of years now and someone whose music we’ve always really enjoyed so to see him put his foot on the gas in 2019 was great to see! 2020 is shaping up to be even bigger for him so we’re looking forward to seeing what he can make of it! 2019 saw him set up his own imprint ‘Temperature’ as well as releasing on the mighty Fuse London’s sub label ‘Infuse’ which really got people talking! His no nonsense London infused (no pun intended!) sound has made its way into the record bags of some of the top selectors around the world and continues to get plays on dancefloors wherever you go!
2020 will see him releasing more music on Temperature as well as some other labels he has a close connection with so keep your eyes peeled on your favourite outlets to keep up to date. Gig wise, things are being kept under wraps for the time being but its safe to say you’ll be seeing a lot of Casey throughout 2020!
2019 was definitely somewhat of a turning point in DJOKO’s career having signed to the incredible PIV brand and releasing music on their consistently strong label, which has led to him, taking the music thing a bit more seriously. Gig wise he had the honour of playing in the UK and the Netherlands a couple of times but if he had to point out a gig that really stood out it would be the PIV showcase in Amsterdam during ADE.
2020 will see a full EP on Berg Audio at the beginning of the year and also the first full vinyl release with his collaboration project with PIV head honcho Chris Stussy. There will also be an EP coming on the French label hedZup with a remix by Mancini and he’ll also make an appearance on a V.A. on Politics of Dancing. Make sure you keep an eye out for some more breakbeat-influenced music that he’ll be releasing throughout the year under a new alias ‘Kolter.’
Herck is a name that should be known by many after the 2019 he had! The Romanian native was one of the most consistent artists in terms of releases and quality of releases throughout the year. The last 12 months saw him release on labels such as La Mesure, Curtea Veche, Chroniques Binaires and Otomoji to name a few!
2020 looks like it’ll be another great year for Herck with lots of projects in the pipeline bubbling away waiting for their release as well as an exciting tour for him to get stuck into!
2019 was a very successful year for Ida Daugaard as she played at Garbicz Festival, a beautiful festival deep in the Polish forest with a lot of beautiful art and light installations and spacy work shops to stimulate all your senses! The Block in Tel Aviv, a club with excellent sound, great minimal line up’s and a very heart warm, dedicated and welcoming team behind it was also a gig to remember! La Fenêtre Secrète, a group of young talented artist and creatives in Gotenburg making events where music & art is aligned to help you reach a higher level was another venue Ida thoroughly enjoyed!
Ida found herself in South Africa for New Years and played a long set into the sunrise of 2020 in a beautiful nature reserve for Search Festival. Soon after she’ll be back playing at Reset in Cape Town, one of her favorites in the city. Followed by a gig in Zurich with Varhat at a very cosy afterhours clubs Kauz, February will see her going on a Australian tour and in March she’ll be looking forward to catching the Berlin spring before the festival season begins.
Ida’s mantra for 2020: ‘continue to do what makes me the happiest, spreading love by playing music that inspires me.’
2019 took Lola to various destinations around the world that included Stockholm, Barcelona, Kiev, Bucharest, Strasbourg and many more! Release wise, Lola will deliver an EP on Berg Audio and has some other exciting releases up her sleeve, which I’m really looking forward to hearing!
2020 will see Lola spending a lot of time playing across Eastern Europe but will also be jet setting off to South America for a couple of dates later in the year so if you do get chance to go and check her out at some point during the year then we would recommend it, she’s a real talent!
At the beginning of 2019 Marlie founded Click Agency with her friend and business partner Cass Pitman - Touring artists from Europe to Australia. This contributed to the growth of her brand Roots in Sydney which she also started in London when she relocated. Her first gig of the year will be at her home in Sydney for the world renowned, S.A.S.H.
She’ll then head back over to Europe where she has several gigs locked in for Greece, Switzerland and London so far! A promising 2020 lies ahead for Marlie so get her on your radar guys!
Basel based Mikhu had a fantastic 2019, releasing some massive tracks and remixes as the year went on! 2020 will see him releasing a collab project with Alice Clark on vinyl as well as another collab project with his good friend Fulvio Cala which will be released on Blind Vision Dubs. He’ll also be launching his very own vinyl label ‘Mormorio Records’ where the first release will be a special collab between Mikhu and Lorik. We’ve had our eye on Mikhu for quite some time now and really believe 2020 will be the year that he’ll kick things up a gear or two!
Becoming exclusive to Belisa Booking propelled Monika to the next level in 2019! Also playing every weekend and becoming friends with her long-time favourite artists has been a surreal experience! Her most loved country to play in 2019 would have to be Switzerland - a truly beautiful part of the world!
Lots of music is planned for 2020 : Weather Recordings, One Records and Talman will all host remixes and a few new tracks of hers early in the year. She then plans to focus on some more solo works and perhaps an album which would be really exciting!
Monika will be in Australia for the first February so will start the year off in the sun! Then its off to Bulgaria, Romania and back to Berlin for the summer!
Niko Maxen…a name we’re sure most of you will be familiar with after the 2019 he had! Some standout releases include Rowle, Talman and Roche Madame to name a few! If you haven’t checked any of these out then we highly suggest you do!
Releases for 2020 will be on OGE, Talman, Constant Sound and then he’ll also look to drop Maxen 02 and 03 which sound like they are shaping up nicely! Looking forward to getting my hands on these!
His imprint Pathway Traxx will continue to showcase artists that he’s really feeling, mostly breakthrough or up and comers. Niko likes to give them full EP format with remixes from more established artists. One release that he’s looking forward to getting out there is an EP from LOy with remixes from Vern and Niko himself. The Off Path label is for up and coming artists which gives them a great platform to release on VA’s that DJs really wan tto play. And finally, Maxen is his signature label all about showcasing his range and what creative vibe he’s in at any given time!
Niko is a long-time personal friend of mine from back home in Leeds so to see him stepping things up over the last 12 months and seeing his music get the recognition it deserves is great to see and I hope his stock rises higher and higher over the next 12 months!
Nils’ Subtil showcases at Hoppetosse, Berlin along with his show for the The Block club in Tel Aviv and his USA Tour with stops over in; Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver & New York made 2019 a very successful year! 2020 will see him release an EP on Lazare Hoche`s Label, together with Alex Font and a remix from the almighty LIZZ amongst a host of other releases! He’ll also be looking at launching his very own agency which will showcase Subtil artists from around the world so keep an eye out for that coming soon!
Nils will head back to the States and Mexico for 4 weeks in April and is working on a South American tour. Shows in Europe are also confirmed and he’s looking forward to finally heading back to play in London!
Nolga burst on to the scene with his impressive Ventura EP on Kepler’s label Perspective which drew some massive attention! A firm favourite in my bag over the past couple of months since its release! A collab EP with Michael James on Hoader, an appearance on Rubisco’s latest VA and a solo EP on Pathway Traxx with remixes from Silat Beksi and label head Niko Maxen have given Nolga a very strong collection so far!
2020 will see his release schedule continue at a nice pace with an upcoming venture on Krab and and a remix on Aesthetic. Nolga is a name that you’ll be seeing much more of this year for sure!
2019 was a great year for Silat, someone we’ve been a big fan of for years now but someone who is arguably one of the most consistent in the business! With amazing gigs and tours in China, Australia and New Zealand keeping him busy!
2020 will see him move to Kiev, a city he finds truly and fully inspiring. fully inspired of this city. He has some brilliant solo and collaboration projects lined up for this coming year, something I’m really excited to see and hear!
2020 will also see Silat jetting off for tours in America and around Europe so make sure you stick some of these dates in the diary once they’re released!
2019 saw userUNKNWN release his first vinyl cut with Soyro on the Romanian label Piano Forest. The EP reached #1 on the main chart and was completely sold out on deejay.de and Juno in just 4 days!
His ever impressive music has gained huge support from the likes of Sepp, Nu Zau, Crihan, Gescu, Silat Beksi, Ida Daugaard and many more and also got multiple plays at Sunwaves!
Lots of plans are in the pipeline this year for him with an EP on a new vinyl label called Legacy which is a sublabel of Recordeep, which will feature 4 tracks with collabs and a remix. He will again collaborate with Soyro which will be released on a very interesting VA coming from a mysterious label in Panama!
2019 was a great year for Vern, he had his first release on RE.FACE, after that saw his second release which was a special one on Joule with great support from Janeret! This release helped Vern discover a new sound…a melancholic dubby sound for his third release on Lokomotiv with a bomb remix from Silat Beksi! He finished the year with a nice VA for unutrei., a local label from his home town Constanta. Vern is preparing a remix for irv.in, a very talented artist and another remix for STAMP Records as well as appearing on a VA for Peculiar.
2020 will see him putting out material on Rowle and Octophonic and a remix on Tzinah amongst other upcoming releases which are being kept under wraps for the time being. This year, Vern will be focussing much more on the production side of things so make sure you keep a close eye out for these as the year goes on!
Viceversa is someone we’ve been keeping a close eye on for the last couple of years but he really stepped things up in 2019! Some noteable highlights include playing the first BRICH party with Giuliano Lomonte, IbizaUnderground Club, Supermarket in Zurich, Rokoko in Budapest, Half in Belgrade and the amazing night in Skopje! He has several remixes coming in 2020, the next release from his very own label viceversa008. Also in the pipeline are plans to release at least 3 new Viceversa EP’s which you should certainly keep an eye out for! 2020 will see him make his French debut and plans are well underway with a tour of Asia so expect to see plenty more of his name this year!
2019 was one of the most intense and exciting years of Yzi’s life! Performances covered a variety of directions and locations such as London, Zurich, Moscow, Leipzig, Dusseldorf, St. Petersburg, Sofia, Vietnam, Thailand and more!
The new year will see her focus more time and energy into her ‘Myzique’ project where she highlights artists that she loves the most. Some of them are up and coming and some of them are already standing firmly on their feet in the business! 2019 saw her showcase some really awesome names like Cosmjn, Herck, Bruno Curtis, Lost.Act and many more!
Some of her highlights from last year include playing at the amazing Epizode in Vietnam alongside Maayan Nidam, Oshana and Lamache. She also took to the stage at Waldbrand in Leipzig alongside Randomer and Youandewan, playing with Georgia Girl and Marlie at StarLane Pizza Bar in London as well Mata Hari in Zurich alongside Arkady Antsyrev.
2020 is shaping up nicely too for this awesome talent so she’s definitely one we’d recommend keeping a close eye on!