Since 2008, the Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival has provided a platform for the most innovative currents in underground electronic music—a much-needed alternative to the bro-culture, fist-pumping EDM that have colonized the mainstream airwaves over the last decade. The fest now spans numerous venues across the borough, collects artists from around the world on its bill and augments its concert schedule with panels and a record fair. That's a lot to sort through, but to help we've rounded up our top five favorite artists to give you a little more direction over the long weekend.
L.A. producer Jennifer Lee, pictured above, makes psychedelic hip-hop with skittering electronic beats. Expect new tunes from her latest, Lune Rouge, written during Lee's recovery from brain surgery. House of Yes, 2 Wyckoff Ave, Brooklyn. Thu 12 at 10pm; $25.
2. Leon Vynehall
The U.K. vet delivers lush, eclectic house music heard most recently on his disco, soul and jazz-infused 2016 release, Rojus (Designed to Dance). Good Room, 98 Meserole Ave, Brooklyn. Fri 13 at 10pm; $30.
Bicep, the duo of Andrew Ferguson and Matthew McBriar, two Northern Irish bloggers turned producers, bask in the afterglow of the majestically anthemic banger-of-the-year, “Aura,” the high point of their recent top-tier self-titled debut. Music Hall of Williamsburg, 66 North 6th St, Brooklyn. Sat 14 at 8pm; $25.
Fans of ambient music and everything moribund won't want to miss this rare U.S. show by renowned U.K. soundscapist Lustmord, who has worked with Coil, Melvins, Tool and numerous other edgy luminaries. Music Hall of Williamsburg, 66 North 6th St, Brooklyn. Fri 13 at 8pm; $20–$25.
5. Turtle Bugg
A true natural magician on the decks (and easily one of our favorite local DJs), Turtle Bugg is the head of record label Basement Floor, who's just as likely throwing down tunes at New York's top clubs as he is spinning at Brooklyn's most bona fide afters. Good Room, 98 Meserole Ave, Brooklyn. Fri 13 at 10pm; $30.