The frenetic world of electronic music is full of distractions and diversions, hindering the ability to find transcendent music. Let Oggie James be your guru and lead down the path to musical Enlightenment.
Album, song and event reviews, mixtapes, and radio shows, light the way to Enlightenment, conveyed by Oggie James.
Right off the bat the song's presiding feel is shiny; invoking the memory of spinning music boxes, ever so delicately playing the plucked metal. Immediately warm, the production wondrously mingles with Songdreamer's beckoning invitation. The subtle use of the dissonant vocal sample magnifies the tremendous foundation of the instigating percussion and finely tuned low end. The playfully twisted synths soar, dropping pixie dust, covertly enchanting it's listeners, laying them down into a dreamlike state. In the end, "Come Lay With Me" is a decidedly rapturous euphoria of a production, with Songdreamer's alluring call, combining to define the beauty of togetherness. Kredo simply succeeds in the marriage of Songdreamer's vocals, accepting the the invitation with his solid production. Listen and heed Songdreamer's advice, "Don't pretend you can't feel the love. Don't be afraid. Let go."
Last night at The Hoxton was undoubtedly a religious experience as revelers were treated to the thrilling future of Kannibalen artists Apashe, Dabin and label heads, Black Tiger Sex Machine. Dabin was first to take the stage at 11 and were wow right from the get go. When I arrived he had just dropped Flume's remix of Lorde's "Tennis Court" to which the crowd cheered and sang along. Shortly after that Dabin grabbed his guitar and shredded to Queen's "We Will Rock You," only adding to the crowd's sense of awe. Even though he was jumping between DJing and slaying the guitar, he was able to mix smoothly, moving from his "Kyoto" to the Jesse Slayter remix of Hoodboi's "Palm Reader" into Banvox's "Watch Me" and then his "Ghost Hack." While that four track stretch is a highlight in itself, Dabin truly outdid himself when he combined Metallica's "Enter Sandman" on his guitar with some seriously heavy electro drop, absolutely annihilating the ravenous audience.
You may already be familiar with one of the tracks, "Numbers," which has been online since May 5th and was once a free download, I played on Electronic Impressions. It fits in neartly, near the end of the 12 track album, including intro "The Virus," and outro "The Church." Welcome To Our Churchpresents the group's musical look into the future, by producing a nightmarish doomsday, sound-tracking a hostile apocalyptic wasteland. Each tracks thrives with combative, militaristic atmosphere, and a tremendously audacious tone. Each track exudes power, transforming listeners into a pompous, puffed up wrestler, strutting into the ring on a bigger ego trip than Donald Trump. The landscape the trio paint is so dismally dire, it could be the depiction of a future with the Donald as president.
Whether it's the foreboding gospel choir in "Broadside," the fanatical lyricism of Husser in "Crazies" or the dirge of an unholy "Armada," BTSM have injected the very ethos of their creed into their debut album. Anticipate the congregation to arrive early; as of this morning tickets were more than 70% sold out. If you want to observe tonight's ritual, you'll have to act with haste, otherwise you'll have to follow them around the continent. Expect hear many of the above tracks tonight, as well as much more Kannibalen bass with help from aforementioned, Apashe and Dabin. If you're still sanctimonious about the church, might I recommended two videos from Black Tiger Sex Machine's masses, after the break.
For this installment of my Throwback Thursday series, it gives me great pleasure to reintroduce the world to one of the most subtle, spine-tingling, ethereal, finely crafted, percussion driven, pulsating and truly unique productions I've ever encountered, Renaissance Man's "Stalker Humanoid."
I first came across Stalker Humanoid while listening to My Name Is Tiga way back in 2011. In fact that very episode (which you can listen to here, Stalker Humanoid starts approx 22 minutes in) remains one of my most played mixes ever; it's chalk full of world exclusives and Tiga's trademark wit. I was immediately taken when I heard Tiga say Renaissance Man and "world exclusive, " but even more so when I heard the unearthly brilliance of Stalker Humanoid's atmosphere. So fastidiously designed, Stalker Humanoid truly radiates with production prowess, injecting the unease and jitter-ridden anxiety synonymous with a stalker. But of course it is the various percussion elements that Renaissance Man has so painstakingly produced that invoke such distressed heart palpitations.
This however wasn't my first Renaissance Man rodeo, my friends and I were already familiar with their tracks "Brainstorm" and "Mindmap" as well as their tremendously rapturous tracks "Babbadabba" and "Fruit Loop." I highly recommend checking those tracks out, as well as their Kama, Early Man and Call2Call EPs. Unfortunately there hasn't been much action from the duo lately, but we can always hope that Renaissance Man have their very own renaissance.
Tonight on Bump In The Hump, I'll be giving "Breathe" it's first play on Radio Humber, but for now you can pick up the free download and inhale the celestial combination for yourself. Tune in to Bump In The Hump live from 6-7 EST here, or simply get the stream from mixcloud after the fact, here.
As I mentioned in my last post, I've been gearing up for the new X-Files miniseries, and came across a really hilarious episode called "The Post-Modern Prometheus" which culminates with Mulder and Scully taking the Monster of The Week to see Cher in concert (watch it here). She sings Marc Cohn's "Walking In Memphis," and as is often the case, I was inspired to listen to the original and search for remixes of that classic piano melody. That was when I came across the above record, Raving I'm Raving, from English duo, Shut Up And Dance. Replacing the lines "blue swede shoes" and "walking in Memphis" with "raving shoes" and "I'm ravin', I'm ravin," this hardcore breakbeat version is able to maintain the piano melody, successfully calling back to the original while reworking it for the club. I suspect this version could still garner a huge reaction from any crowd and may very well make its way into some future mixes. There is also a version by Scooter that changes the lyrics the same way, which you can listen to here. But for now, I will leave you with Shut Up And Dance performing the track on Top Of The Pops, which due to copyright claims could not feature Marc Cohn's melody.
Every once in a while I stumble upon an essentially brand new artist, with only a few productions to their name, and very few Facebook/Soundcloud/Twitter fans/followers. While scrolling through Soundcloud's new charts, I came across Displaced, who fits that bill perfectly. Their track "Rugged," with it's slap bass drops and soaring space age sections, has already garnered over 10,000 plays surely meaning Displaced's following will grow substantially.
I've been watching ridiculous amounts of X-Files this weekend (as I'm sure many of you have as well), and the extraterrestrial introduction seemed to glide effortlessly into my ears, only truly piquing my interest on the second listen after being awoken from my slumber by the awesome slap bass drop. Upon re-listening to the intro, the brilliance in the production comes from the bent and finely tuned, almost Porter Robinson-esque synth work. Aided by perfectly placed percussion, the transition into the build up comes about so organically and when stripped down to the bare bones, sets up the percussive bass laden drop, rollicking in 'rugged' chaos. It's not the hardest hitting or most life changing drop, but it is Rugged's beyond infectious and tremendously playful nature that makes it so alluring. The combination of the percussion of the drums and bass is so enticing that I cannot believe that I haven't heard anything like it before. I sincerely hope to hear more from Displaced. But for now I'll just have to be appreciative of the two tracks up for free download.
Galantis have absolutely exploded into public consciousness, so much so that they've garnered Grammy nominations. With that widespread success comes the inevitable storm of remixes. Everyone knows at least one "Runaway (U&I)" remix, not to mention "Gold Dust" and "Peanut Butter Jelly," but the track that's receiving the most remixes at the moment is their "In My Head." A look at their official remix contest page reveals approximately 200 submissions. I can't imagine spending the time listening to all of them let alone a small fraction of them, that's absolute insanity. Thankfully, I haven't had to visit that page until today as I was lucky enough to have a select few mixes arrive in my email. Particularly this warm, tropical, playful and "really crazy weird" version courtesy Josie Webster.
Aided with sultry saxophone samples, comfortable, relaxing synths and frolicking xylophone solos, Josie Webster has created a highly enjoyable experience that will not only get your toes tapping but perhaps even your fingers snapping. Her seamless use of the original vocal content helps the mix cruise along ever so harmoniously, and where she does manipulate those vocals, it never strikes you as out of place but rather as though it meant to be. The whole track glides along so easily, in large part, due to the subtle yet tremendously important percussion, flirtatiously filling in gaps and urging progression. Finally and most strikingly, it is the spirited solos on the piano and xylophone packaged around the powerful and vibrant sax breaks that set this remix apart from the others and makes it so highly consumable.
One of my favourite things about music is reminiscing about, and rediscovering tracks that randomly appear on a large shuffled playlists. Today, during a 3 hour chili cooking session, my phone's shuffle played me these great tracks: Flux Pavilion - Pogo People The 2 Bears - Take A Look AroundMssingno - XE2Sable - SurfMadeaux - Chakra feat. Fifi RongShaun Frank - TimeThe Glitch Mob - Beauty Of The Unhidden Heart (Chrome Sparks Remix)Jennifer Lopez - First Love (Syn Cole Remix)Charli XCX - 13reak The Rules (Sava&Razz Remix)A$AP Ferg - Fergsomnia ft. Twistaalt-j - Left Hand Free (Lido Remix)Mitski - Francis Forever (Ryan Hemsworth Remix)Fairmont - Gazebo (Sebastien Leger Remix)
Today's release of The Silence Is Deafeningmarks a massive leap forward in REZZ's skyrocketing career trajectory. The four track EP released on mau5trap is everything we've come to expect from REZZ - suspense-ridden, brooding intensity, throbbing bass, alien synths, and attentively crafted percussion - all artfully assembled in her most fierce and consummate productions yet.
The first track "Lost," is the first time we've had any vocals on a REZZ track, and apparently she learns quickly, as it is her most supremely polished production. 'Slithering' into our consciousness, the darkness of "Lost" overcomes it's mere parts, and sounds to become a commanding, foreign presence - embodied by Delaney Jane's celestial offerings. I expect this will happen an awful lot in the future; I foresee it getting a lot radio play as it's certainly her most accessible production with the aid of Delaney's entrancing vocals.
She follows that up with "Edge" perhaps her most twisted production to date. Your face is sure to wince when you take in it's sour synths, manipulated ever so nefariously, darkening your heart and soul, preparing you for the immanent attack of the busted bass drop. Lurking ever closer, the wickedness always seems to be on the verge of consuming you. Each note and progression is so finely placed and skillfully tuned for maximum atmosphere.
"Delusion" continues the highly hypnotic mastery; its melody are equal parts mischievous and tempered, leaving you with a certain unease and anxiousness. Ominously plodding along, the growth becomes nearly unbearable until the 'relief' comes ever so deprived and incomplete, leading into "Methodology." This is perhaps the sneakiest part of the EP, as we have now become fully enslaved by REZZ's magic. As is her "Methodology," she's used her alien powers to puppet us, whether she ups the intensity and tempo or slows it - both of which happen in the final track of the EP. After listening to the EP at least a half dozen times now, I can truly say that each and everytime, I am helpless to keep my heart rate under my control, REZZ has won me over. That being said, it is at your own risk to press play on The Silence Is Deafening as you may or may not become REZZ's very own voodoo doll.
Just when you thought 2016 was all about the future, Mija takes us back to a happier time with her remix of Darren Styles' hardcore classic track with Francis Hill "Come Running."
Mija does a brilliant job of slowly building us up with the easy flowing minute plus intro before flipping the track on it's head with a spinback asking for "that old school shit." Upbeat, bouncy and playful that track continues with a heavier emphasis on the various percussive elements. This happy basscore remix is sure to hit you right in the feels with the full force of nostalgia and tremendous beauty.
For this week's installment of my TBT series, it is my pleasure to reintroduce the world to one of the greatest debut EP's ever released, the funky, disco-inspired, revitalized french house Peach EP from none other than Louis La Roche, ironically a Brit named Brett Ewels.
I can still vividly remember sitting in my friend's bedroom listening to his music, while he scrolled through his playlist of new music before he stopped the music dead, excitedly saying "oh shit, you have to hear this, it's so new and fresh, and no one knows who it is." Clicking on a track called "Love," with the artist name TB, who he said was rumoured to be Thomas Bangalter of Daft Punk. The thumping bass at the start of the track was quickly overtaken by sultry synths and a Michael Jackson sample. Full of warmth and promise we were overcome by the track's intoxicating and inescapable vibe.
About a month later I got a Facebook message from my friend, saying that "Love" wasn't a Bangalter track, but actually some 17 year old named Louis La Roche, and it was part of a 5 track EP, Peach. I immediately headed to google to get myself some Peach, and what I found quickly became my most played EP of the year, from one of my new favourite artists. Full of funky, nu-disco numbers Peach, and the title track (my favourite from the EP) will forever remain firmly entrenched in my psyche.
I cannot confirm nor deny that I reacted the same way as the people in this video, when I first heard "Peach." But I can confirm that my friends and I did boogie down to Louis' EP repeatedly, gobbling up everything we could find of his. The beauty of the Peach EP not only lies in the radical and revolutionary sounds that Louis brought to the table but the wide range of samples, and sounds he puts to use throughout the EP. No track sounds like another yet each has an intrinsic tie to the next.
I first came across SoySauce late in 2014 when I heard their remix of Sir Sly's "You Haunt Me," so competently produced, it was the track I used to test out headphones when buying them that Black Friday. It's that strength of production with floating and playful plucked strings on top of bumping bass drums, complete with just the right amount of atmospheric synth work, that sets this mix apart from the others. It's subtle yet sultry, never offering too much or too little, finding the perfect balance of bass and beauty; those strings pulling at our defenseless hearts, evoking a flood of emotions. Pick up the SoySauce flip along with the other 19 remixes, with all of the proceeds going towards the charity, Kiva. SUPPORT (K. FLAY): FACEBOOKSOUNDCLOUDTWITTER SUPPORT (LOUIS THE CHILD): FACEBOOKSOUNDCLOUDTWITTER SUPPORT (SOYSAUCE): FACEBOOKSOUNDCLOUDTWITTER
Supporting the despondent lyrics of the original, Lookas and SMLE start their mix with devastatingly downtrodden chords and anguishing atmosphere. Strings and bells ring out in a hollow existence, slowly gaining intensity and drive, hitting the first muted drop, accentuated by the greatly manipulated and gaunt feeling vocal "Heavy as a heartbreak." Where the first drop is far more subtle and restrained, the second hits hard with wobbling and throbbing dubstep bass. The disparity between drops and overarching movement of the track is the magic behind this production; phenomenal storytelling highlighting the extraordinary vocals. Perhaps best seen in the juxtaposing drops, the first still seems to maintain some hopefulness and humanity, which has all but disappeared in the anger and devastation endemic in the dubstep drop; screaming ever so painfully at an uncaring world. A tremendously beautiful depiction of the grieving inherent in the human condition, "Heavy As A Heartbreak" can now be streamed both on soundcloud and Spotify.
The remix comes as part of of a seven track release on Attack The Music, with four original tracks and three remixes. Right off the bat, the first chord struck by WRLD is both powerful and delightfully pleasant, especially when combined with Yukacco's mesmerizing vocals. The chords progress in such a commanding and compelling way as the intensity streams ever higher, gaining depth through additional, electronic and synthetic, instrumentation. Sublimely situated around Yukacco's heavenly vocals, the fever pitch is struck with powerful percussion at once flipping the script with a trap inspired drop, taking WRLD to another level, which he has "never done anything this heavy before." The sounds used in the drop are the key to the magical character of the track. Somewhere between plucked strings and tuned toms, the playful, bouncing staccato stabs are so irresistible and intoxicating. Glowingly beautiful and dance-able WRLD's contribution to We Are Connectedstands out as an utterly engaging remix that is highly consumable.
Known for his bass blasting trap productions, Jackal's original "Carbomb" has accrued nearly 400,000 plays on his soundcloud alone, and has no doubt been booming on stereo systems for months. His broken speaker vibes have been rebooted and tweaked by two more trap kings, ATLiens and QUIX, adding to the already high intensity. The addition of the ticking clock ups the anticipation and fear of the immanent explosion of sound. Screeching synths evoke the feeling of being suspended and trapped in a a war-zone, dodging shockwaves and shrapnel, in a time slowed Matrix-esque fashion. The frightfully tuned percussion is the perfect cap that drives this nuclear wasteland of a track. Pick up your free copy of the track now.
Strider, who has been releasing tracks since this time in 2014, has seen a growth in his style and sound, and assuredly his production capabilities. Finding influences from Datsik, Wu-Tang Clan and more evident in Future Paradise, the likes of Mord Fustang, Wave Racer and Pusher. The first track "Once Again" has the feels of a Keys N Krates, Alison Wonderland, or even a Flume production, with floating ethereal synths contrasted with hard hitting percussion. The vocals samples evoke spine tingling chills as it's listeners embark on a cosmic journey. The dreamlike voyage hits a speed-bump with the start of the second track "V P R W V E," that ups the intensity and tempo, in some sort of interstellar Nintendo themed melee; the Wave Racer and Pusher influences are front and center. Rife with 8-bit Nintendo samples, the playful production is rapid and raucous. It's the perfect combination of Jersey Club, Kawaii and future beats; its many movements and manipulations make it so adventurous, fresh and new while remaining familiar and ever so comfortable. The final track "With U" leaves that comfort behind in favour of bent and dissonant, alien synth warbles, essentially book-ending the EP, letting you down easy with this lounge inspired chill-out. The continuity and storytelling of Future Paradiseis simply sublime, showcasing the range and artistry in Strider White's arsenal. Be sure to grab your copy of the EP free and check out more of his eclectic and ever growing catalog.
Subtle and savoury sounds abound. "All That's Left" is enchanting and captivating, with it's whirling production, mimicking the lyrics "We go round and round on this carousel." It's light and dreamy, yet full of substance; leaving little to be desired. The vast amount of (often manipulated) sounds and samples, darting in and out of the track, give the feeling of a higher power presiding over this "technicolour dream." The vocals, lyrical content and supporting sounds are so flawlessly combined; there's tremendous interplay and cohesiveness that is simply spellbinding. "All That's Left" to do is pick up a copy of this track for yourself.
The Brodinski fronted label, is known for it's eclectic techno, club-centric and bass heavy releases from the likes of LOUISAHHH!!!, Sam Tiba and Panteros666, but this marks the first release under the Bromance label for Sister City. "Blood Mind" isn't your typical techno delivery, rather it's quite the subtle, slow burner. Each technological sound and sample is so delicately added and subtracted so as to not take away from the overall project. The additional vocal flourishes are the only organic sounds, whereas the rest of the track is an entirely mechanical production; an assembly line of awesomeness. Perhaps my favourite part of the track is the interplay between the various elements with rapid transitions, negating the need for a banger-esque drop; it's artificial intelligence has surpassed such a mortal requirement. Pre-order the album now, and tracks from GENER8ION, Myd, Canblaster, Tommy Kruise and more (24 tracks in total) in your iTunes as the calendar flips to the 22nd.
I wake up every day with a flooded inbox of new music, especially soundcloud uploads, from follow/repost mafias. And there's almost always at least one hidden gem in the jumble of names I've never seen before. One of today's such gems is this one from, Pushing Buttons' a seemingly secretive production duo (or larger) of unknown origin. Best guess says Austrian, because it was hosted by Viennese label, oblique. The track isn't actually knew either, it was first released on Pushing Buttons' own soundcloud. Originally available for free download, "No Love," is now available on spotify and iTunes.
"No Love" has a lovely floating, effervescent intro that organic growth simply overtakes the moment and slides effortlessly into our consciousness. That primary atmosphere, complete with disparate nature samples meld beautifully with the twanging strings, soaring synths, tuned toms and warm bouncing bass. The track flows in such a way that it evokes an innate effortlessness of tranquility. "No Love" is a splendid track that sends you through a wonderful, wandering trance that despite the name and lyrical content, is tremendously impassioned and enchanting.
For this installment in my Throwback Thursday series, it is with great pleasure that I re-introduce the world to one of the grimiest, sneakiest, most twisted, wobbliest, pulsating and jacking electro tunes, ever released, the Jack Beats remix of Passion Pit, "Little Secrets."
I first came across Jack Beats, through the Boy 8-Bit discography I had downloaded, that included both their mix of his "Fogbank" and his mix of their "What," both pillars of the electro sound of the time; tossing bodies from side to side, with their tremendously mixed, wobbling synths and ebbing and flowing basslines. However, it was the Jack Beats remix of Fake Blood's rave weapon "Mars" that solidified Jack Beats as one of my new favourite artists. I was so lucky, in that the duo, of Niall Dailly and Ben Geffen, had done their first essential mix, just months before.
Mere minutes into said essential mix, came a track that was quite clearly a Jack Beats production, but one that I wasn't yet familiar. Aided by Passion Pit's signature vocal style, the ridiculously intense, jacking and tension building lows take control of your heart and leave you breathless awaiting the endorphin laden release of the drop. One cannot help but feel freed and lose control of all bodily functions, simply being overtaken by the euphoric majesty of Jack Beats' sub-harmonic production. But perhaps the key to the tremendous power of the "Little Secrets" remix lies in the high register. Passion Pit's vocals, combined with the bright and beautiful percussion create a stupendous disparity and contrast that you need to hear to believe.
This essential mix remains one of my favourites, and truly every promo mix or club set they release is simply incredible. I've seen them multiple times live and they do not disappoint. They are part of my greatest weekend ever, having seen and met them after their first show in Toronto, chatting about going to see the Lakers play while they were in Los Angeles. A few weeks ago I was showing my friend, Kayj, some music and Jack Beats came on, which he instantly was in awe of, requesting more "like that." They're catalog is literally overflowing with five star tracks, and cannot be cut down to a top five or even a top ten.
I can still remember getting in trouble during my time at CFBU, claiming different Jack Beats tracks at different times were "simply the best productions ever." I'm not sure it's an overstatement when I say their productions are unparalleled. I've yet to find any producers who can do it all, the way they do; each sound is so finely crafted making even their minimal tracks sparkle, and when getting complex and layered, they fit each piece together so perfectly. The last time I saw them at Tattoo, they became celebrities by the end of their set, even signing autographs for their ravenous fans. SUPPORT (JACK BEATS): FACEBOOKSOUNDCLOUDTWITTER SUPPORT (PASSION PIT): FACEBOOKSOUNDCLOUDTWITTER