From the opening track of the debut album by Melbourne outfit Electric Empire, one could be forgiven for believing you’d unearthed a collection of Curtis Mayfield or Al Green rarities, with a modern twist, channeling Stevie Wonder with The Beatles’ influence.

Heavily influenced by the raw sounds of the late 60s and early 70s soul music revolution, Electric Empire is the new creation of accomplished singer, songwriter and producer, Dennis Dowlut, founding member of electronic outfit Disco Montego, who enjoyed significant chart success with “Beautiful” and “Magic” featuring Katie Underwood and “U Talking To Me?”.

Dennis’ personal and musical journey is very much reflected in Electric Empire’s material, an authentic, melodic blend of early rhythm & blues and jazz that defies traditional labeling, but which the band refer to as “soul searching” music.

Earning his stripes with Disco Montego, Dennis and his late brother Darren earned massive respect as producers and songwriters. Having drawn in the cream of Australia’s urban and electronic music scene to feature on their debut album, including Daniel Merriweather, Jade MacRae, Katie Underwood, Michael Di Franceso (Van She) and Jeremy Gregory, Disco Montego achieved three Top 40 singles, an ARIA Nomination, and for two years running, were awarded an APRA award for the Most Performed Dance works.

Their success and accolades would see Dennis and Darren being sought after by major labels to write, produce and remix many local and international artists, including Sir Elton John, Delta Goodrem, Diesel and Jimmy Barnes.
Remixing Mariah Carey’s “Boy I Need You” in 2003, led to a publishing deal with US-based Peer, taking the Dowlut brothers closer to their dream of relocating to America and embarking upon an international career.
This dream was shattered, however, when two days before leaving for the US, Darren was diagnosed with cancer. After a short battle with the disease, he passed away in August 2005, leaving Dennis to take a soul-searching world trip, alone, for two years, before he settled in his birthplace London, where he would set up his studio and return to his passion – music.

There, Dennis resumed songwriting and production, working with Kaz James, Newton Faulkner, Gypsy and the Cat and Macy Gray on their releases.

It was during this time, Dennis created Electric Empire, and realized it was time to return to Melbourne and pick up where he and his brother left off. Back in Australia, Dennis recruited two key members that shared the same passion and creative vision in the creation of music. These two young men would add another dimension to his project, and along with Jason Heerah and Aaron Mendoza, Electric Empire took flight.

Once these three talented musicians banded together and Electric Empire was launched on to the live scene in early 2009, a new life was infused into Melbourne’s clubs and venues, and their fan base has rapidly grown through their prolific gigging – performing weekly at some of Melbourne’s best circuit venues such as The Toff in Town, The Espy, Veludo’s and the Cornish Arms, as well as being selected for one of the summer’s best music festivals, Hot BBQ, and hand-picked to perform at Baz Lurmann’s Christmas Party last year.

2010 will see the independent release of Electric Empire’s self-titled debut album and the band will take their exceptional live show on tour, which will include a stint in London.

The self-funded album is a result of the endless nights in their South Melbourne recording studio, with each track written, arranged, produced and mixed by the three, who will put the album out through their own label, Electric Empire Music.

Dennis says, “We decided to fund the record ourselves so we could have control over the final product and stay true to the originality of the project. We are like brothers and our strong bond and conviction to write, record, produce and engineer our own style of music, that represented our passions and personalities, was a major factor in going it alone.”

Electric Empire will be released in March, 2010 with the debut single, ‘Baby Your Lovin’.
Moving forward, Electric Empire aspires to continue songwriting and producing other artists and bands of all musical genres – utilizing the individual skills and specialties of each band member.