Poll: Who Will Win Best Dance/Electronic Album At The 2020 GRAMMYs?
It's finally 2020, which means it's almost time—20 days from today!—for the 62nd GRAMMY Awards. While the final voting period has officially ended, there's still plenty of time for us to dive into the nominees and hypothesize on this year's winners. Today, let's take a look at the epic Best Dance/Electronic Album category for 2020, for which Apparat, The Chemical Brothers, Flume, RÜFÜS DU SOL and Tycho are all nominated.
German-born, Berlin-based Sascha Ring, aka Apparat, may be a first-time GRAMMY nominee, but he's been making waves in the underground house scene for the last two decades. In the '10s, his haunting vocals and ethereal rhythms echoed across countless dance floors with emotive club cuts like 2014's "Bad Kingdom," which he released as Moderat, his collab project with Modeselektor, and the 2013 track "Nices Wolkchen," his collaboration with DJ Koze.
With 2019's LP5, Ring's succinctly titled fifth solo studio album and his first since 2011's The Devil's Walk, he serves up a dark, moody and deeply immersive soundscape. (In between, he also released a score for a theatrical rendition of "War and Peace" as well as the albums II and III with Moderat). For LP5, he brought frequent collaborator cellist Phillipp Thimm into the studio, as well as other horn and string instrumentalists to add deep texture. LP5 is one of those albums you have to listen to a few times to really absorb and begin to grasp all its parts. But once it fully hooks you, it's impossible to forget.
No Geography, The Chemical Brothers
Four-time GRAMMY winners The Chemical Brothers are in the running for three more golden gramophones this year, thanks to their triumphant ninth studio album, No Geography. In addition to a Best Dance/Electronic Album nod, the 2019 LP is up for Best Dance Recording for "Got To Keep On" and Best Music Video for "We've Got To Try."
The iconic U.K. house and techno duo, composed of Tom Rowlands and Edward Simons, met at university in Manchester in the late-'80s, cutting their teeth in the emerging underground house scene there. In 1995, they released their debut studio album, Exit Planet Dust, as The Chemical Brothers, and in 1999, they broke big on both sides of the pond with their seminal third album, Surrender, featuring dance classics like "Out Of Control" and "Hey Boy Hey Girl."
2019 not only saw the duo's first album in four years with No Geography—since 2015's Born In The Echoes—but also the 20th-anniversary reissue of Surrender and a massive world tour to celebrate both.
Hi This Is Flume (Mixtape), Flume
In 2012, a then-21-year-old Flume released his self-titled debut album on indie Aussie label Future Classic. The album, acclaimed by fans and critics alike, featured bassy, trip-hop-esque beats and collaborators like fellow Aussies Nick Murphy and Moon Holiday, as well as an epic Otis Redding sample on "Holding On," who offered unique texture and flavor to the vibey tracks. In 2016, Flume, born Harley Streten, served up a new version of his sound with Skin, which earned him his first GRAMMY win, for Best Dance/Electronic Album, in 2017.
While 2019's 17-track Hi This Is Flume is technically a mixtape and not his anticipated third album, it serves as guidance toward where the electronic wunderkind's ever-evolving sounds may be taking us next. The mixtape features deeper experimentation with glitchier, more industrial sounds: At Lollapalooza, he broke things onstage to this effect. It also brings in some new collaborators, including two tracks with 2018 GRAMMY nominee SOPHIE, one of which features Skin artist KUCKA (listen to "Voices" above) as well as one with rising experimental rapper JPEGMAFIA.
SOLACE, RÜFÜS DU SOL
Aussie live electronic trio RÜFÜS DU SOL exceeded many fans' expectations with their third studio album, 2018's deep, emotive SOLACE. For each project thus far, Tyrone Lindqvist, Jon George and James Hunt pick a new city to work and record in. For SOLACE, they hunkered down in their temporary home studio on Rose Avenue in Venice, Calif, after two years on the road. One of the album's singles, "Underwater," is also up for Best Dance Recording, earning the group their first two GRAMMY nods.
Also in 2018, they launched their own record label, Rose Avenue Records, to which they've signed (and collaborated with!) rising electronic acts Cassian and Lastlings. It was only back in 2014 when RÜFÜS released their debut album, Atlas, so it's safe to say the guys had a good decade.
Another Poll: Who Will Win Best Pop Vocal Album At The 2020 GRAMMYs?
As ethereal chillwave outfit Tycho, San Francisco's own Scott Hansen makes peaceful yet powerful music perfect for enjoying sunsets or sunrises. In fact, the two-time GRAMMY nominee's annual sunrise DJ sets in the Nevada desert at Burning Man are a mecca of sorts for his fans. When performing live, Tycho is built out with Hansen's full touring band, some of whom also collaborate in the studio, a favorite for those magic golden hour sunset festival sets.
For Weather, Tycho's fifth studio album since his 2006 debut, Past Is Prologue, Hansen pairs his chill, ambient beats with dreamy vocals from Saint Sinner. It's his first project featuring lyrics, and not an insubstantial amount, as she sings on five out of eight of the album's tracks. Because of this, it feels fresh yet still familiar and comforting, an exciting shift for the beloved multi-instrumentalist/producer/visual artist.
Don't forget to tune in to the 2020 GRAMMYs live on Jan. 26 to find out who will take home the Electronic/Dance gramophone this year, as well as all the other 83 exciting categories. In the meantime, stay tuned to GRAMMY.com (sign up for our weekly newsletter digest above!), our social media channels (follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter) and our YouTube page to keep up on all things 2020 GRAMMYs and beyond.