Future Times Beautiful Swimmers Beautiful Swimmers Credit: Darrow Montgomery

Get to know D.C. with our daily newsletter

We dive deep on the day’s biggest story and share links to everything you need to know.

This is the Future Times ethic: Rep your city hard, but find your crew wherever. The D.C. record label can count on grassroots support in U Street clubs and uptown house parties, but flagship duos Protect-U and Beautiful Swimmers draw much of their energy and attention from an international archipelago of autodidactic house DJs, offbeat electronic-music heads, and discerning fans. In 2013 the Swimmers were particularly busy, releasing the wildly creative Son LP and regularly jetting off to Europe to spin records in places where 3 a.m. is when the party might be peaking. The music they play, create, and remix is fundamentally inviting—as long as you can appreciate a well-dropped 4/4 groove—and it’s also sneakily cerebral. Tastemaker sites like Juno Plus, Test Pressing, and Fact find plenty to chew on; like-minded labels like L.I.E.S. and RVNG Intl. ensure that the musical conversation continually expands; and radio sites like NTS and Red Bull Music Academy push the sounds globally. For anybody reared on scene-oriented indie or punk music, it all might seem a bit nebulous. But there’s no doubt that this crew is thriving.