French Fries (a.k.a. Valentino Cazani) is an interesting producer. Based in Paris, he's established himself as a sort of chameleon, as the young artist is seemingly capable of tackling new sounds and styles with relative ease. His breakthrough tune, 2010's "Senta," offered a raved-up take on UK funky that found its way into the sets of many DJs who had never really dabbled in the genre. Read more »
Last week, XLR8R headed to Madrid and spent a handful of days at this year's Red Bull Music Academy. Amidst the flurry of lectures, studio sessions, club nights, and special performances, we pulled aside John Talabot for a quick chat. The Barcelona-based producer and former Bubblin' Up subject was invited to Madrid as one of this year's RBMA lecturers, so after dropping over an hour of knowledge on the Academy participants, he sat down with us and spoke about his new album, his RBMA experience, the relationship between Barcelona and Madrid, and how his music goes beyond its sunny reputation. Read more »
Amsterdam producer Applescal's El Diablo EP (pictured above), released as a free download yesterday via the brand-new RTFKT imprint, offers about as much variety as a three-track release can hold, from the pensive repetition of "Mr. Cold" to "No Offence", an aggressive and heavily distorted piece that seems doomed to fall apart at any moment. Featured here, the title track is replete with the 8-bit coloration of a retro video game soundtrack. Thankfully, Applescal skirts the shallowness that can so easily result from such sounds, and chooses instead to employ a central melody with a surprisingly emotional tug. You can stream and download the full EP after the jump. Read more »
When XLR8R took a closer look at modern ballroom and vogue house earlier this year, the music appeared prime to break out in a major way. Largely built upon raw, upfront drum sounds, recycled snippets of hip-hop and R&B, and, most importantly, the ever-present "Ha" (itself a repurposed Masters at Work sample), vogue house seemingly offered the sort of sound that tastemaking and blog-reading DJs would snap up with aplomb. Hell, even Diplo championed the ballroom scene. Yet, for whatever reason, the expected vogue-house explosion hasn't really happened. While a handful of non-ballroom producers and DJs (most coming from the world of bass music) have experimented with the genre, the music essentially continues to hum along in the underground. Read more »
You may remember a recent download we posted from Glaswegian producer Soosh, who offered a delicate and subdued take on Shlohmo's "Couch" that was snagged from the California beatsmith's forthcoming re-issue of his debut effort, the Shlo-Fi EP. Now, you can stream the entirety of the new deluxe edition of that record. Read more »
Brooklyn duo White Ring recently released a new 12" via Texas-based label Handmade Birds. The single features a cover of Neil Young's "Hey Hey, My My" alongside original track "Felt U," the latter of which is of particular importance to White Ring, both as a favorite track amongst fans and as the closer to the outfit's live sets. Placing an emphasis on space, "Felt U" finds White Ring working in a style similar to that of spacey hip-hop producer Clams Casino—or just about any other Tri Angle-signed artists, for that matter—as echoing claps and soaring synths contrast with a hi-hat pattern that would just as easily be at home in the world of Southern rap music.
James Whipple (a.k.a. M.E.S.H.) has put forth a handful of remixes for the likes of Teengirl Fantasy, Amerie, and o F F Love, and now the Berlin-based producer has focused his talents toward the realm of original productions with the recent release of his Share The Blame EP (pictured above) via German label Dyssembler. "On My Body" is taken from that record, and blends a brooding rhythm with a tense, ravey synth melody—seemingly drawing inspiration from both hip-hop and the R&B-saturated current that runs through much of contemporary electronic music. Share The Blame is available as a digital download or on 12" vinyl at Dyssembler's webstore; the 12" features three M.E.S.H. originals and a remix from Teengirl Fantasy, while the digital version includes additional remixes from Craxxxmurf and Arca. You can listen to the full release after the jump. Read more »
Kwame Safo is the Londoner behind Funk Butcher, the moniker he's used for his various producer/DJ endeavors, which includes running his Sunday night Rinse FM show, Houseology 101 (you can tune in 6-9 p.m. GMT), and helming his very own Houseology imprint. Here, we have a track from the man himself. "Up and Down" employs rolling low-end, tasty percussion, and an unexpected-though-welcome amount of jazzy flutes, which results in—you guessed it—an infectious and funky house number.
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