10 Singers Who Should Make an EDM Album

Vocals on EDM can be tricky; when they're done well ("Clarity," "Sweet Nothing"), you've got an entirely new dynamic added to a dance track. When done

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Complex Original

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Vocals on EDM can be tricky; when they're done well ("Clarity," "Sweet Nothing"), you've got an entirely new dynamic added to a dance track. When done not so well... you kind of wish the producer and the singer would just die in a fire. One thing that'll be inevitable once more major labels start digging their heels into EDM is the dreaded collaboration, where an established singer will try to get some appeal by using EDM artists to spice them up. A lot of them just don't sound right...

There are some singers who could make the grade; singers who, if dedicated to an entire EDM project, could really turn these tracks into something special. A number of these artists have already dealt with EDM producers before, or have voices/styles that fit well within the vast dance music scene. Some might be obvious choices, others might be more leftfield, but we feel that this batch of singers could (and should) make some beautiful electronic dance music, if paired with the right producers.


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Rihanna's received a lot of love from dance music producers, with the likes of Chase & Status having a number of production credits on her more recent albums, as have David Guetta and Knife Party. She's another one who gets a lot of worldwide appreciation, and her music already lends itself to more diverse sounds, so hearing Rihanna on everything from dubstep to house would be a treat on a full album project. Hell, we'd even like to hear her work with DJ Fresh on some bright drum & bass!


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While many might think of David Guetta's "Remember You" first, Usher and Diplo dropped "Climax," and seem to "get" each other. Imagine Usher really getting into the Mad Decent wave; a post-divorce kiss-off trap track? A sexy moombahton love song? Maybe even some full-on zouk-flavored party jams! Usher's the kind of artist who can flow over different sounds, which is right up Diplo's alley.

Ellie Goulding

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Ellie's an intriguing one; she's dated Skrillex, and worked with (and been remixed by) a number of EDM producers, but she is seen as more of an indie/folk artist. Her voice, that sultry soar that it is, fits very well over dubstep tracks, and it'd be a treat to hear her link with a pair of producers (say Benga and Gemini) on a full-on EDM project.



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One thing Beyonce shares with Jay-Z is horning in on interesting sounds and producers. Beyonce's already rocked over Major Lazer tracks, and her most recent single is deep in the trap. We're not saying B is going to drop a single with UZ, but we'd be exicted to hear what she'd come up with if she was given her pick of EDM producers. Maybe she'd churn out a huge anthem with Skrillex, or tell some woe-filled tales over sparse Mala production. Or she'd go for it, and link with Zedd for a new "Clarity."

Justin Timberlake

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This one might be an interesting one; we've fallen in love with some Justin tracks due to quality EDM remixes, and he's already gone to a number of different zones via Timbaland's production. Imagine some hard-hitting original dubstep that Justin is rocking over. Or getting his blue-eyed soul on to some UK garage. He's got the chops to even twist a lovely ballad over some off-kilter Burial. If he sat down and really had a go at it, we think Justin could churn out one of his best projects with some able EDM producers.



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Kelis has long been loved by the European audiences, who accepted her later work before it even hit American shores. She scored a huge hit with Calvin Harris ("Bounce") from his platinum album 18 Months, then had an unexpected gem with Skream ("Copy Cat") on his latest release. Those two tunes show her range, as she can tackle the care-free upbeat tracks as well as the more experimental side, all while still maintaining her personality. We could see a multi-textured project from her, ranging from David Guetta-style tracks to what we'd really love to see: Kelis and Disclosure or Royal-T.


Katy Perry

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Katy's a pop princess in the US, but it was that Noisia remix of "E.T." that made many who avoided her music check for her... at least for that single. We doubt a legit EDM album from Katy would sound like that, but we definitely thnk she could work well with some Paul Oakenfold or someone of that ilk, adding her quirky sensibilities to some house.

Kelly Rowland

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Kelly Rowland actually won a Grammy with David Guetta, and we think she could be well-suited exploring more of her EDM side. She could bring back that '90s diva mentality to today's EDM scene, and we think she might be more adventurous than the usual pop-EDM you might think. We'd love to hear her vocal cuts from T.Williams, really push that whole retro garage style to the forefront.

Florence Welch

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Florence Welch and Calvin Harris made beautiful music with "Sweet Nothing," and he came back to remix the Florence + The Machine track "Spectrum." We've heard a number of other remixes of their work, and the constant is loving her voice over EDM tracks. Someone like Zedd could transport her to the middle of the club, but we'd also love to hear her over some dubstep, maybe guys like Gemini or Nero. People who could really give her voice some weight.

The Weeknd

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Judging by his production, he's already haflway there. We don't see him dealing with the bigger names within EDM, or even the big sounds of EDM. Guys like Richie Hawtin, Joy Orbison, Gorgon City even; people who can bring that darker, more pulsating sound of dance music could work well with The Weeknd's back-to-mine soaked songs.

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