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Lauren Auder
Lauren AuderPhotography by Nicolas Sénégas

Lauren Auder selects his favourite DIY underground artists

The 17-year-old musician talks us through his internet obsessions, from Rabit to Lil Ugly Mane

The past year has been packed with unique, interesting and game-changing pop music, with everyone from FKA twigs to Grimes and Young Thug shaking up the sound of the mainstream. But, as ever, it’s not all about chart-topping success, with the Internet’s ever-evolving underground offering a freedom of expression and experimentation unmatched by their major label counterparts.

“Today, ideas and technology are available to everyone and my generation is using this to its full extent,” 17-year-old French musician Lauren Auder told us in an interview last week. “The DIY ethos of Soundcloud is something that was really appealing to me. I could make everything through the Internet and collaborate with almost anyone from around the globe. It’s exciting.” With his dark, dub-smattered production and glimmering, sullen vocals, Auder fits somewhere between King Krule, Spooky Black and Tim Hecker, with a heady dose of hip hop influences; a magical mish-mash of all his Internet obsessions, packed in and delivered via and voice and style that is distinctly his. To delve even further into his love of the lesser-known, we got Auder to select his favourite artists from music’s Internet underground.


“Although he has been a big figure on the underground hip hop scene, I still feel like he is underrated. In my opinion, he is one of our generation’s best rappers and is lyrically on par with the greats. His beats are equal parts golden age nostalgia and noise experiments, which to me is beautiful.”


“Mothica is another producer for the list. She makes gloomy and catchy music that appeals to my pop sensibility. It’s dark in touches, but at the same time if anyone is headed for mainstream success on this list I swear it’s her.”


“Dviance is an 18-year-old producer from France. His work is interesting to me because it feels equally inspired by ambient, noise, cloud rap and trance music and it constantly tugs on my guts and heart. He’s currently working on an album which I’ve been lucky enough to have heard parts of and it’s brilliant.”


“Denzel is a London rapper and producer. Though he sounds like his own man entirely I feel like there’s a touch of mid-00s hip hop in his music that I adore. He’s one of the nicest people I’ve ever met so I’m happy I can speak about his amazing art here. I’m obsessed with his debut EP Pleasure.”


“Rabit is an electronic musician from Houston. He’s already worked with Björk so obviously that says a lot. His album Pandemic touched me deeply. His music sounds like utter chaos and destruction but at the same time seems extremely introspective with this beautiful edge to it.”


“Lord Pusswhip is an Icelandic producer currently based in Berlin. He makes psychedelic hip hop and trap instrumentals and is all round one of the best beatmakers I know. He’s also a musical encyclopaedia so his samples are always crazy. I've worked with him three times and “Endurminning” (below) is my favourite of those collaborations.”


“S.Maharba is a beatmaker who although seems to be clearly influenced by hip hop has a way of playing with noise and distortion that pushes it that bit further. We have talked about working together in the past, so that’s something to look forward to I guess. He’s also a black metal enthusiast like me and “A Mother’s Sorrow” (below) is a track which I adore because it’s influenced by those darker sounds.”


“These guys are my favourite French rap collective. Their music is dark and brooding but tongue-in-cheek at the same time and Harry Potter references have become a staple of their work. This is a track by the group’s main man Freeze Corleone, but I recommend listening to members Zuukou and Jorrdee too.”


“Kassett is a Belgium producer and is also one of my frequent collaborators. His music sounds like ambient dance music from the future. His sound is so distinctive – it’s amazing. “Traces to Nowhere” (below) is my favourite track off his last album Platinum.”


“Little Cloud is the my favourite musician ever. She produces and sings everything on her work and has been my friend for a long while. She inspired me and pushed me to make music a few years ago. Her music sounds like the sweetest thing imaginable, but has always had a dark touch keeping it interesting.”