Sounds Like: Laid-back folk made propulsive by sparse and smart electronic touches, plus the occasional (and remarkably un-corny) reggae-ish upstroke
For Fans Of: Gotye, Citizen Cope, Junip if José González caught a wicked sore throat
Why You Should Pay Attention: Kassel, Germany-based bandmates Clemens Rehbein (vocals) and Philipp Dausch (production) pulled together their debut LP, Sadnecessary, over two low-key weeks at home with whatever tools they had laying around — computer, microphone, basic interface — and tossed single "Stolen Dance" up on YouTube with the expectation-equivalent of a shrug. Month later: 500,000 views. A little over a year later: more than 56 million views and counting; top-of-charts status in 14 countries; gold, platinum or double-platinum plaques from Austria to Australia; and a calendar that's bouncing them from the Montreaux Jazz Festival to Reading and Leeds. And they'll probably be in the States eventually: Sadnecessary is due for U.S. release in October.
They Say: Although Dausch and Rehbein aren't about to deny the attention-whiplash that comes with a viral hit, they're not in much of a hurry to dissect the draw of "Stolen Dance" — or worry about figuring out how to repeat it. "We can definitely still feel the buzz, and it's still overwhelming for us because everything happened in such a short period of time," Rehbein says. "The only thing we learned is that you can't predict anything. We started out of the living room and nobody thought we would come this far."
Hear for Yourself: It can't hurt to start with the strummy, YouTube-romancing "Stolen Dance" — the video for which puts a suitable spotlight on Rehbein's majestic hair. Though "Down by the River" might be an even more affecting representation of the way Milky Chance mixes melancholy and subtle danceability. By Nicole Keiper