One of the most frustrating and limiting obstacles a DJ can face in their career is trying to “find their sound”, especially within a scene that is in a constant, rapid state of evolution. There are a multitude of genres and sub-genres within the underground electronic dance music scene; the main three being techno, house, and trance. And while many DJs have dabbled in one or two, few artists have been able to find success in all three (and more).
Last month we welcomed an artist who has truly journeyed through a diverse range of musical genres – with success in many – to find his current sound. Over the past 25 years, German-born Jerome Isma-Ae has proved himself able to grab ahold of the dance floor with his sounds as both a producer and a DJ.
After earning his big break topping the US Billboard charts in 2003 with his trance influenced remix of Nightcrawlers’ “Push The Feeling On”, he founded his label Jee Productions the following year. He made waves in the scene again in 2009 with his anthemic rendition of OT Quartet’s “Hold That Sucker Down”. Since then, he has released tracks on labels such as Anjunabeats, Armada, Controlled Substance, Black Hole Recordings, and Outta Limits, as well as his own Jee Productions.
During his earlier years, Jerome’s productions would be largely classified under the trance genre. In 2009, always looking to prove he is undefined by boundaries and labels, he released a track named “Underwater Love”, which went on to win the title of Best Chill Out Track at the 2009 Beatport Awards, a genre he was not previously associated with. Over the last few years his sound has morphed and transformed to where it is now; a perfect blend of dark progressive house & techno (a Montréal favourite), while still leaving in some trance elements to stay true to his roots. His track “Timelapse”, in collaboration with Alastor, builds with a dark melancholic progression, which is lightened by a hopeful, trance inspired melody. It was tremendously well received, with support coming from Township Rebellion, Lane 8, John 00 Fleming, Paul Thomas, Aly & Fila, Above & Beyond, and Markus Schulz.
Jerome Isma-Ae returned to Montréal for an acclaimed 5 hour All Night Long set at Newspeak, coming back from a busy September during which he held a week-long music production retreat in Bali, before continuing on to a 3 date tour through India.