Playlists have become this generation’s mixtapes. And while sharing a digital link may not always have the same effect as presenting a one-of-a-kind, hardcopy thing, the playlist and the mixtape get at a similar sentiment: an ode to someone, something, or some genre.  The Deadbeats compilation series debuted in 2017 as a celebratory release in the practice of playlist generation. Deadbeats volumes 1-4 champion the sounds and times of the electronic music scene, highlighting eventual stars like Mersiv and Subtronics while consistently offering a showcase for the state of bass music at large.

Last week, the Deadbeats creators dropped Volume 5, an 18-track compilation of some of 2022’s hottest up-and-coming acts. For its fifth edition, the label has brought on newcomers such as sky-rocketing duo Smoakland, viral star Zingara, underground favorites like NotLö, Tape B, and Mythm, as well as Wave legend, Deadcrow, and a collaboration from Abelation & Saka. Additionally, the compilation features a wide array of sounds and unique artists from the likes of Sfam, Capshun, Spüke, Farrah, Not Yes, So Dope, TINYKVT, SoSus x Eugene, blxk mntn, Twonski, and Age of Espion.

Listen to Vol. 5 on Spotify

Deadbeats creators Zeds Dead are an electronic music duo hailing from Toronto, Canada. Dylan Mamid, aka DC, and Zachary Rapp-Rovan, aka Hooks, rose to prominence with remix and original releases in 2009 and 2010. Soon thereafter, they became a staple on the internatural electronic touring circuit. Generations of artists count the Canadian duo among their biggest inspirations, fueled by the creation of the Deadbeats and Altered States labels.  After 13 years of creation, Zeds Dead continue to prove themselves among the most innovative and influential artists in electronic music; with the We Are Deadbeats series, they have also become spokespeople for the genre.

Zeds Dead, courtesy of ra.co

Volume 5 is all over the map in terms of sound. Powerful, soft instrumental synth tracks are accompanied by heavier-hitting, R&B-infused rave tracks. Geographically, too, the artists included in Volume 5 hail from all over. Representing the West Coast is bass music project Smoakland, started by Anthony Battaglia and Harrson Hays, as well as the Denver-based NotLö who has used her platform for a variety of causes by donating proceeds to organizations like The NAACP and RAINN–– an organization dedicated to aiding survivors of sexual violence.

From the East come acts like Maryland DJ Zingara whose musical journey has been one based in storytelling. With a versatile production style, Zingara is pushing boundaries in the bass music scene––having only just played her first festival in 2021, she is now being booked at premiere festivals around the U.S. And from Vancouver comes MYTHM, whose track “Murda” appears first on Deadbeats Volume 5. MYTHM is the vision of bass music producer Mikey Miele who has helped fortify the growth of the experimental bass and Dubstep scene on the west coast where he resides.

Excited to be included in the Deadbeats projects, more of the featured artists had some inspiring words about the compilation and their chosen songs:

I felt really inspired to make some music the day I released the “Collapse” remix, so I sat down with the intention of making the type of song I’ve always wanted to make and Melodic Blue happened. I finished the whole song in a couple of hours that night and it’s now one of my favorite tracks I’ve written so far.

Tape B, “Melodic Blue”

We went into the studio with the intention of making a tune as deep and wonky as possible and were able to deliver on that with “Elite.”

Abelation, “Elite”

Reese [Abelation] and I wrote this when we first ever started getting to play shows and festivals w people we’d looked up to for so long, people who we considered absolutely elite at production, and so we wrote the beat around the phrase in the beginning where the vox goes “now you’re rockin with the best.”

Saka, “Elite”

“Revival” represents the rebirth of yet another sound within my project. It combines dark trance and early future house with the more contemporary sound of house. When I first started my project, all I was making was future house, but I never got a chance to release it. So being able to revisit the genre and actually add my own flare has been unbelievable and liberating, which in turn is creating a stronger bond with me and my roots. In essence, the sound has been revived… and this is my revival.

Spüke, “Revival”

Zeds Dead announced their Deadbeats label tour for 2022, which kicked off on July 2 & 3rd with two sold out shows at Red Rocks Amphitheater, followed by an equally clamored for takeover at the Brooklyn Mirage. The duo will bring one of the most unique, diverse electronic road shows to iconic venues across the country such as Masonic Temple in Detroit, WaMu Theatre in Seattle, The Shrine in LA, and more. On Friday, August 12th, Zeds Dead and MKLA teamed up again for a follow-up collaboration to 2021’s smash hit “Alive” with another stunning cut of timeless electronica, “In My Head”. 

You can follow Deadbeats on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Spotify, and check out the schedule below for upcoming tour dates near you.


Deadbeats Minneapolis @ The Armory I September 10th, 2022

Deadbeats San Antonio @ Cowboys l September 17th, 2022

Deadbeats Boston @ Roadrunner l September 24th, 2022

Deadbeats Seattle @ WaMu l October 8th, 2022

Deadbeats Las Vegas @ TBA l October 14th, 2022

Deadbeats Eugene @ Cuthbert Amphitheatre l October 15th, 2022

Deadbeats San Francisco @ Midway l October 21-22, 2022

Deadbeats Detroit @ The Masonic  Temple l November 25th, 2022

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