André Obin’s slow-burning dance tracks find their way to the floor

Electronic artist’s tunes are getting some attention

“I still don’t think many people know who I am, but the people who do feel like real fans right now. They’re hungry for more,’’ says André Obin.
Jim davis/globe staff
“I still don’t think many people know who I am, but the people who do feel like real fans right now. They’re hungry for more,’’ says André Obin.

With four EPs and a handful of singles under his belt (and two more set to drop in the coming months), electronic producer André Obin has been particularly busy the past few years. And that’s without considering his work in the shoe-gaze, post-punk rock band Endless Wave.

While the Cambridge-born Obin, 33, says he’s been making music at such a steady pace his entire life (he graduated with a degree in electro-acoustic composition from Wheaton College), it wasn’t until 2008, when he dropped his first release, “Colorwheel,’’ a hypnotic kaleidoscope of synth-noodling and hazy aesthetics, that his work fully registered in the Boston scene.

He’s made up for lost time in the past year with a series of singles that have started to gain traction on the international level, and a respectable track record in local music awards, including a nomination as best electronic artist in the 2011 Boston Music Awards, and a win in the same category in the Boston Phoenix Music Poll. Obin plays the Magic Room Gallery in Brighton on March 2.


Among the tracks he’s been recognized for is “Soft Rain,’’ a song firmly footed in Obin’s dreamy, meandering, blissed-out style. Released last March on the Dutch label Trouw - run by the influential promoters of the Amsterdam club of the same name - it came complete with a remix by German electronic veteran Patrice Bäumel that, according to Obin, has found its way into John Digweed’s sets.

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“That really opened me up to more of a global fan base in Europe and South America,’’ says Obin. “I mean, I still don’t think many people know who I am, but the people who do feel like real fans right now. They’re hungry for more.’’

That explains the heightened pace of his release schedule. His recent, brightly mournful single, “Lemondrop,’’ on Brooklyn, N.Y.-based Moodgadget Records, features remixes by Vancouver, British Columbia’s, Teen Daze and Kansas City, Mo.’s, 18 Carat Affair. April will see the launch of his next single, “Valencia,’’ a harder-edged track on Boston’s Vanya Records; while in May, the Dutch label Klopfgeist will put out his acidic 10-minute techno track, “Night Owl.’’ A video for “Valencia’’ is also currently in the works. Directed by Theodore Cormey - who made the stunning shot-by-shot re-creation of “The Prisoner’’ for Boston duo Do Not Forsake Me Oh My Darling this past year - the video was partly shot in Montreal and required the rental of an actual military tank, among other elaborate details.

None of that heavy load represents a change in his recording or writing habits, Obin says. “My releases might be more frequent,’’ but the prolific pace isn’t. He’s just lucky enough to have found people ready to put out his work this year.

“I’m basically putting out a song at a time right now because it’s a singles market. But it can take me up to a year to finish one song. I work with a really meticulous process. I really want things to sound a certain way, even if it sounds degraded, like the song ‘Lemondrop.’ That’s the way I wanted it to sound.’’


“Night Owl’’ is another song he’s been particular about; it’s been four years in the making. “It’s something I always knew I wanted to release, but it was about finding the home for it.’’ Klopfgeist was perfect for the hard-sequenced track which, he says, “is like techno for vampires.’’

It’s hard to see how someone so meticulous about his work doesn’t get frustrated relinquishing that control to remixers, but Obin welcomes it. He’s done recent remixes himself of local acts such as the dance band Bearstronaut, the dark psychedelic Avoxblue, and Matthew Connor of the electropop outfit Provocateur, as well as for Moscow house act Kimouts.

“It’s a two-way street,’’ Obin says. “I like doing that work, and I like having it done for me. But I always prefer to be the genesis of the music. Maybe because I value whatever comes out of my head and my own heart, rather than someone sending me stems to work on. I still love remixing, but it doesn’t come as easy to me as writing a song.’’

Whether it’s an original, or a remix he’s doing for someone else, there’s a signature style that stays consistent for the most part, Obin admits. “I think everything I do, even if it’s super dark or super bright, it’s all pretty dreamy. I’m not making club bangers by any means. . . . That’s not who I am. I’m way more serious. I don’t want to say I’m a downer. I think I value art more than fun, I guess.’’

Bonus tracks

The third installment of the electronic-focused Together Festival will kick off April 2. The initial lineup has been announced, and includes such names as Big Freedia (New Orleans), Phill Niblock (NYC), RJD2 (Philadelphia), Fenster (Berlin), and 6th Borough Project (Glasgow). On Feb. 25 at the Brighton Music Hall, the Together Warm Up Party will give a taste of what’s to come with performances from Parisian artists French Fries and Bambounou, and emerging Boston talents Elkid, Fens, and Mzungu. . . . Boston producers Brenden Wesley and Mark Ingram have released a track, “Sans Snare,’’ under the moniker Ingram & Wesley on the new Brooklyn-based label Hamilton Dance Recordings run by Marcos Cabral (Runaway/DFA). Wesley hosts the second-Tuesdays monthly house/techno/underground-disco night Gallery at the Middlesex Lounge. . . . The second in DJ Knife’s “Strange Brew’’ mix series drops this week. Running the gamut from disco to dubstep, nu-disco, indie-rock, hip-hop, and house, the mix - available for download and on CD from and - is a wildly eccentric blend of throwback party tracks from Carte Blanche and Stevie Wonder, and new bangers from the likes of Cut Copy, Miami Horror, and the Naked and Famous. Knife plays the monthly hip-hop and reggae party Fresh Produce at the Good Life on Feb. 25.

Luke O’Neil can be reached at Follow him on Twitter @lukeoneil47.