Best Local Electronica Artist - 2001
Audio Habitat, a.k.a. James Wagner
No, he's not a DJ, though he does spin vinyl, which he usually has to borrow because he deals in CDs and engineered beats. No, he's not into the club scene or making it past the velvet rope, though he currently spins at hot spot Blue. Nah, for James Wagner it's all about the love vibes. His debut CD, Felt, went public during a May 2000 Universal Source record-release party. Since then Audio Habitat has crept into regular rotation during WVUM-FM's (90.5) Electric Kingdom. Usually found burning his corneas in front of his computer screen, Wagner, with the help of advanced design software, makes music from just about anything. The fluid organic sounds of Felt are interrupted or accented by random whirs and clicks. A subtle bass line feels like drips of water amplified and extended. Seamlessly mellow, down-tempo strains emerge. Currently Wagner's music aims to appeal to the senses through the specific vibrations. The sounds are not aimed at the club set, nor at the dance floor, either. They're a little out there but not too far. Just enough to make him this moment's innovator.