Working your way up in the competitiveness of hardstyle is not an easy thing to do, however within the past few years a great cohort of new talents have broken through and have even managed to over-take some of their ‘older’ and more experienced colleagues. Throughout the entire spectrum of hardstyle there’s a bunch of talents who produce music that’s already been done before but there’s also some bright sparks within the pack which are the ones who will make it in the long run. We sussed out a bunch of talents from today (in no particular order), had a look at their music and overall persona and of course, reviewed what makes them stand out from the rest!
1. Cyber *AAN’s Favourite*
Seraja Hilbrecht, or better known as Swiss hardstyle prodigy Cyber, has been working incredibly hard these past few years to the point where his productions have soared to overtake those of more experienced artists. This down-to-Earth producer has worked day and night to create an unrivalled, high intensity sound consisting of heart-grasping melodies, powerful atmospheres and of course, a bit of reverse bass every now and again!
Signed to Dirty Workz in 2014, Cyber has had the honour to release a collection of amazing tracks including “Spring To Life,” “The Supreme” and also “We Are God,” and follow up track “Everything Is God,” which have grown to become standouts among today’s scene. Another thing that I must mention about his sound is that he creates euphoric hardstyle that packs in such an incredible amount of energy and even manages to capture that feeling that older tracks used to bring. To be able to do this is an incredible thing, because you can hear that many ‘older’ artists are struggling to make euphoric hardstyle that doesn’t sound nauseatingly cheesy.
So, why is he going to make it? When you compare his earlier music to newer releases, you can definitely hear improvement and refinement in his sound, not to mention the powerful impact it has on the listener. As our favourite talent of today, we have high hopes for this Swiss ‘God’ and we’re more than certain that he’s going to push the standard high for the next generation.
2. Devin Wild
When listening to Devin Wild’s music, one’s thought pattern tends to go from “Oh yeah, this is really cool,” to “This is insanely good,” to “WTF how the fuck does a 16 year old come up with this?!” The kid behind the productions, Dion Mons, started producing at the ripe young age of just 9 after getting into hardstyle the previous year. Days and nights on end were spent in his room perfecting his technique and when the time finally came to showcase himself to the world, Devin Wild was more than ready!
Already boasting a rich collection of tracks including “Device,” “Into The Night,” “Chasing Dreams” with Waverider, as well as his collaboration with Atmozfears, “Nature’s Gasp,” there’s nothing that this kid can’t do! Exceeding all expectations, along came landmark track “Everlasting,” a piece of art that blew listeners away and sparked tremendously positive responses from fans and other artists.
With his newly established name in the scene, Devin Wild has already scored himself gigs at prestigious events including Defqon.1, Decibel Outdoor Festival, The Qontinent, Dreamfields Festival, Beat The Bridge and many more!
We have high hopes for this young melodic mastermind to be headlining mainstages and experiencing a prosperous future in hardstyle.
3. Sub Zero Project
Many of you know this next act as “the guys who make OMG that’s the funky shit,” but oh, oh, oh, they are so much more than that. Nigel Coppen and Thomas Velderman, AKA Sub Zero Project established their signature rough, yet sophisticated sound early on in their career, subsequently allowing them to soar during this past year and perform at events including The Qontinent, Nature One, Dreamfields Festival, Sunrise Festival, XXlerator RAW and more.
Holding a collection of eminent tunes including “Hit The Funk,” “Hell On Earth” alongside X-Pander and their collaboration with Atmozfears, “This Is Madness,” Sub Zero Project are on their way to being raw hardstyle pioneers of tomorrow. It’s quite rare nowadays to see talents within the raw hardstyle spectrum producing music that retains an exceptional level of quality and musicality, so big props to SZP for remembering what’s important!
With on-going support from piloting artists such as Digital Punk, Crypsis, Atmozfears, Endymion, Radical Redemption and many more, the forecast for this duo is confirmed as sunny with a chance of fucking hard kicks!
He’s young, charming and can even accomplish the art of turning chicken into music! Ladies and gentlemen, I now present to you another headliner of tomorrow, Sephyx. Since his debut release in 2013, it didn’t take Xander long to be noticed by leading label Dirty Workz, subsequently resulting in the release of three EP’s (Creation Of Earth, Water, Air) in 2014. Listeners were captivated by his enchanting, euphoric and transcendent sound that also captures a taste of some older influences.
Compared to his releases last year, 2015 has brought a time of great improvement for Sephyx as his sound has become more refined, resulting in exceptional tracks including “Gallinaceo,” “Solaris” and his upcoming release “New Life.”
Performance-wise, this young-gun has had the honour to stand upon crowds at The Qontinent, Q-BASE, Nature One, Daydream Festival, Sunset Festival and many more!
With an ever-growing sound and sole aim to bring back the energy and love to euphoric hardstyle, Sephyx is on the right path to hitting it big in coming years.
5. Sub Sonik
Notorious for the overutilisation of the word “fuck,” Ilmar Hansen, or better known as the widely acclaimed raw hardstyle talent Sub Sonik has risen from strength to strength in the past year. Signed to Brennan Heart’s label WE R Raw, this young pioneer immediately grabbed the public’s attention with his rough, brutal and catchy sound. Already boasting an unprecedented discography including “Go Fuck Yourself,” “Look At Me Now,” “Fuck Y’all If You Doubt Me” and his remix for Brennan Heart’s “Outta My Way,” it’s only a matter of time until this raw wonder is headlining mainstages.
Within such a short time of being in the hardstyle scene, Sub Sonik has managed to score himself a packed out schedule including milestone gigs at Supremacy, Dominator, Defqon.1, Intents Festival, Qapital, Fantasy Island, Loudness, Penoze with many more to come in the near future.
With his newly launched live-act marked as a huge success, there’s no doubt in my mind that Sub Sonik will keep the legacy high in the coming years.
Who wants to float away on a cloud of beautiful melodies? If you love uplifting atmospheres, exceptional details and heart-grabbing story-lines then you’ll fall in love with the sounds of Energyzed! After meeting on a forum, Jordy and Xander joined forces to create the duo and together they released some incredible music including “Your Love,” “Together We Are” alongside Atmozfears, “Dreams & Fantasies” and soul-grasping break-up tune “Stay” feat. Debrah Jade. Apart from their melodic sound, Energyzed also distributes focus to darker projects such as “The Harvest” and “Never Again” alongside brother-from-another-mother, Atmozfears.
In recent times, Xander and Jordy felt their musical interests drifting, resulting in Xander continuing on with the act solo and Jordy shifting his focus to other music styles. As a debut to his solo career, Energyzed has freshly released “Save My Soul,” which confirms huge potential for the future! Earlier this month at Q-BASE, Energyzed had his mainstage debut when he was invited onto the stage by Atmozfears to play their collaborative projects, talk about kicking off a solo career with style!
Whether you like it euphoric or raw, this young talent ticks all musical boxes!
7. Riiho *Wildcard*
This next talent is a little bit of a wildcard in my eyes as his music can lead him down some different paths, however his efforts have been picked up by many artists and fans worldwide, landing some deserving recognition to his name. Signed to Dirty Workz Anarchy in 2015, Finnish producer Atte Riihonen, AKA Riiho challenges the hardstyle scene with dark and hard tracks that jump outside of that ‘raw box.’ With his first releases on Toxxic Records, these sported quite a euphoric, old-school sound as compared to his recently released “Annihilation” EP that packs in loads of brutal energy! Known for collaborating with Digital Mindz, another Finish producer, these two have become notorious for creating brutal masterpieces including “Destroy” whilst being locked behind studio doors together.
Performance-wise, this new kid on the block has blown away crowds at events including Monday Bar, Loudness, Operation Raw and Defqon.1 where he tore apart the Indigo area alongside Project Exile.
This Nordic talent is one to keep an eye on – so be sure to catch him at Loudness in November.
When it comes to breaking boundaries and pushing limits, who better to do the honours than The Magic Show’s secret weapon?
Hailing from Italy, Konstantin Kössler and Sebastian Schweigkofler are the names behind the dynamic duo Clockartz, who have been making waves in raw hardstyle since their first release in 2013. Inspired by a wide spectrum of sounds that range from mainstream and raw hardstyle to the harder sounds of hardcore, Clockartz know one thing and that’s diversity! Standout tracks such as “Bring It Down,” “4 Da Floor” and hardcore crossover “INKA” with Tears Of Fury demonstrate a whole new, innovative approach to raw hardstyle and have been supported by artists such as Digital Punk, Endymion, Crypsis and more!
It’s extremely refreshing to hear that Clockartz manages to produce hardcore inspired hardstyle that retains an invigorating energy and sophistication (and doesn’t end up sounding like a construction site gone wrong).
If this inventive duo remains focussed and persistent then there’s no doubt that they’ll be following in the footsteps of previous Italian hardstyle legends.
Chilled out atmospheres, floating melodies and supernatural sounds are just a few things to sum up the productions of next-gen superstar, Sylence. Hailing from The United States, young mastermind Jason Waters has not only been piloting the American hardstyle scene, but has also made his impact upon listeners on a global scale.
Apart from his famous collaborations with Swiss producer Cyber, including romantically toned heart-melter “Each Other,” his solo tracks such as “Ode,” “Sonder,” and “Some Days” are no exception to his rule of quality. Striving to capture the maximum level of ‘feels’ through his sound, Sylence approaches hardstyle with diversity and an innovative mind, subsequently revealing a whole new dimension of the genre. Although this melodic genius is at a huge distance from hardstyle’s central hub and doesn’t have as many opportunities to showcase himself, his sound has gained deserving recognition from thlikes of Coone, Technoboy, Wildstylez, Wasted Penguinz and many more.
Will this young American be the pioneer of what we call ‘chill-style?’
Last, but certainly not least is one of the most anticipated new names in the modern scene. Hailing from Poland, distance doesn’t matter for this young pioneer as promoters have been practically fighting over him this passing festival season! With his breakthrough year in full swing, Paweł Goss, or better known as Regain, has touched the hearts of thousands with his demolishing kicks and experimental, yet emotional edge to raw hardstyle.
With his debut release in 2011, Paweł was off to a steady start as he worked day and night to perfect his established signature sound. Signing to Heart For Hard Records in 2013, Regain went on to release one of his biggest hits yet – “Push It To The Limit,” which climbed to reach the number one spot on hardstyle.com. Proving that this wasn’t just a one-hit-wonder, Paweł continued his legacy by releasing standout hit “Broken” and of course, his unforgettable remix for Adaro and Danny Scandal’s “For The Street.”
Proving himself as the ‘full-package,’ Regain has not only drawn the public in with his productions, but also his next-level persona on stage. Spreading his infectious energy to crowds at Decibel Outdoor Festival, Dreamfields Festival, XXlerator RAW, Loudness, Intents Festival, Reckless and many more, this Polish representative is well on his way to the top!
Did we hit the nail on the head? I think we did. But please, let us know who your favourite talent is or there’s any others that we should keep our ears/eyes on.