otally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs or TEED was introduced to the masses as the “new Deadmau5” by Vice Magazine in June of 2012. This passé attempt to define an artist in a neatly packaged sentence is anything but comedic, but let me try to fill in the blanks here. As an American growing up into the Electronic scene in the early 2010s, it was hard to ignore TEED. My first encounter with the classically trained British musician was through a remix. His honest punk-rocky voice seemed to be cradled by the gnarly basslines of a rising Canadian bass duo known as Zeds Dead. TEED’s Household Goods (Zeds Dead Remix) was an introduction to a new musical world of incredibly innovative sounds but it wasn’t till much later that I would listen to the original track. Looking back on TEED’s album Trouble, it seemed this musician was opening a Pandora’s Box of potential. These fun, dancey tunes were helping to create a genre and we were all just experiencing it.
Orlando Tobias Edward Higginbottom has been at the forefront of what the public has come to know as electronic dance music ever since he arrived on the scene. In the early 2010s he was collaborating with icons before their time such as Disclosure, Dillon Francis, Eats Everything, Boys Noize, and more. Whether it was a vocal feature, a remix, or a collaborative track, TEED was involved in some of the biggest electronic projects of the 2010s and yet, he is still relevant today. You may have heard TEED’s voice on the debut album of Odesza’s new BRONSON project. You may have also heard his work on Porter Robinson’s 2021 album Nurture, Amtrac’s 2020 Oddyssey album, or his collaborative two-song EP with Bonobo released in 2020. Aside from being involved with biggest names in the electronic scene, TEED also maintains a consistent touring schedule.
I caught Mr. Higginbottom playing a supporting set for Gorgon City at Red Rocks but that wasn’t his only tour stop that week. First he played in Tempe, AZ the following night, then he played a set in Dallas the next night, and finally finished off the weekend at Coachella’s Do LaB. The next week of his tour schedule features dates in Seattle, San Francisco, Austin, Houston and back to LA again. To call TEED an electronic music staple is nearing the point but it doesn’t quite capture the full mystique of Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs.
In a practice of naïveté, I assumed Higginbottom would roll out the full, live TEED set with live piano and vocals at Red Rocks but in retrospect that would only prove to upstage. Instead, Higginbottom delivered a proper 60-minute DJ set that revealed expert song selection and mixing abilities. Whether it was his UK origins or his classically trained musical mind, the way he maneuvered through his set was a work of art. As he took control of the crowd without saying a word, there seemed to be an endless stream of sonic possibilities within that 4x4 beat structure and TEED happily explored them.
Be on the lookout for TEED’s new album “When the Lights Go”, which will be released on July 22nd. You can listen to the first single from the album, “Blood In The Snow” now.