Hackney four piece Rudimental had the undisputed hit of last summer with Feel The Love, then somehow managed to repeat the trick earlier this year with Waiting All Night.
One of the most striking things about seeing them live is how they subvert people's expectations about what dance music is supposed to do. Fast, catchy and thumpy enough to soundtrack a night out and a session at the gym, on stage, they show up with a brass band, backing dancers and the kind of acapella break-downs that got a huge crowd at Glastonbury yelling 'I can feel the love/I can feel it ALL!' last month (below).
Here, founding member Piers Agget tells us how it all happened, what they've got planned next and how to pick the perfect party playlist - which you can listen by scrolling to the bottom of the page.
So how did Rudimental come together?
We [Piers Agget, Kesi Dryden, DJ Locksmith] grew up together in school playing on the same football teams, then started making music at about 16. Then we met Amir [Amor] 4 years ago and it clicked. The album came soon after.
Growing up in London, we used to go to raves and grew up around jungle, drum and bass, house, garage, dubstep… all the subgenres that used to get played on pirate radio. We try and fuse our love for new music with old music from the 70s and 80s - stuff like Marvin Gaye, Otis Redding, James Brown – and out comes Rudimental.
Are you a band, a supergroup or a collective?
I think a band is the best way to describe us. We have an extended family of vocalists, trumpet players, a drummer… and when we play on stage it’s like a big carnival. That’s the best way to describe our live show and who we are.
You've put together your favourite party tunes for Esquire - what kind of stuff makes a good playlist?
Something that people can dance to. Positive, soulful, uplifting songs that make people feel good.
What's the essential artist for every setlist?
Prince! It's always Prince.
What's been your highlight of 2013 so far? You've been pretty busy...
Definitely getting a number one album and going gold in 10 days! We worked so hard on it, and for people to buy and love it shows we aren’t just a singles act. We were really happy with that. And the festivals, of course.
So what’s next?
Well later in the year we're releasing Right Here, featuring Foxes - that's out in August. The video for it is online and we are really excited about that. And we're doing festivals - T in thr Park, Lovebox, Latitude, Benicassim, Exit Festival… then we're off to America and Australia. It’s all very exciting!
Rudimental's perfect party playlist:
Rudimental's album Home is available now. The band were speaking ahead of their show with Bipolar Sunshine, part of the Bacardi Beginnings 24hr A&R project. Listen to 'Distance', the track they created together in 24hrs here.