El_Txef_A on New Album: "A Beautiful Walk Home With Someone You Love"
El_Txef_A (pronounced elchefa) is quite the odd moniker. But it turns out to be a play on words based on the last name of its owner, Aitor Etxebarria, which means "new house" in his native Basque -- rather fitting, considering this celebrated young producer's decidedly new house music sound.
Of course, though, We Walked Home Together, El_Txef_A's latest critically acclaimed long player, transcends house altogether, picking up where the genre left off with stark vocal soul and setting out to explore uncharted electronica territory. The album's deep shades of moodiness draw less from the jazz-inflected Chicago house brand of "deep" than from a personal old-world Basque melancholy.
See also: EDM's Five Greatest Delusions
"Growing up in the Basque country influenced me in all possible ways," Etxebarria tells Crossfade. "Basque music is characterized by very sad harmonies, because of the few turbulent years here. [But] it has also always been a very thrilling kind of music. Artists like Benito Lertxundi or Mikel Laboa definitely have influenced my career."
The legacy of classic British prog-rockers channeling world-music influences is also a reference point for Etxebarria. "These last three years, I have been researching the careers of David Sylvian and Peter Gabriel, and I think that is reflected in the album," he explains.
But for all its genre-defying experimentation, Etxebarria's sound never strays too far from his original electronic influences.
See also: Five Worst EDM Gimmicks