For all you tune-makers on a budget out there, here are some killer freeware synths for you to get your pirating paws on. Resident Advisor turned us on to this new Tumblr blog, SS Freeware, that just posted a veritable grip of software synthesizers of all digital shapes, sizes, and sounds. Read more »
Electronic atmosphere creator and XLR8R TV go-to-guy Christopher Willits has a brand-new album coming out via Ghostly in late July. The record is called Tiger Flower Circle Sun, and the first single, "Sun Body," is a precious piece of warped electronic textures loosely wrapped around a live drum beat and heartwarming vocal samples. The shimmering track starts out quietly with a bunch of plinking sounds twisting and turning on themselves, but eventually changes its form multiple times to fit the plethora of musical ideas and experiments at work in Willits' head.
This upbeat Delorean remix premiered today of on the Mad Decent blog, and, being the lovers of Spain's blissful dance-pop outfit we are, we just had to share the goodness. Before the group's debut performance next week at San Francisco's Tormenta Tropical, trans-California production duo Banana Clips—consisting of Bersa Discos' Oro11 and Dutty Artz's Chief Boima—snagged the pieces of "Stay Close," from the amazing, just-released Subiza album, and turned the song into something better suited for Caribbean shores or African townships than Ibiza raves. The track is obviously a remix, but the kind of wide-smiling vibes propagated by BC's tropical riddims and bouncing melodies sound almost like Delorean's islander alter-ego. And don't miss our former cover stars on another lengthy US tour, kicking off tonight in New York.
The sinisterly wonky and crunked-out tunes of Chicago's Salem are moving into a full album format this September with the release of its debut record, King Night. After releasing a series of limited-edition 7" EPs, the trio has pulled together 11 tracks to flesh out Night, which will be released by one of XLR8R's Labels We Love, IAMSOUND. Read more »
Chicago's leftfield, weirdo dance-pop outfit (and self-proclaimed "Chicagotronics" originator) Mahjongg has a new record coming out, called The Long Shadow of the Paper Tiger. The album takes the band's fractured party jams and pairs them with some collaborative vocal efforts from friends the likes of Suddenly Susan and Jeneane O'Toole, both of whom are featured on the album's first single, "Miami Knights." Honestly, there's no way to pin this track down. It's just about as experimental as a group of dudes with a handful of synths and drum machines can get while writing "accessible" music, but manages to still flex a sort of hook here and there. We're not sure where that puts them in the genre spectrum, but we are sure it's weird. And we like weird.
Chicago's juke and footwork scenes have been bubbling for years, but now that Planet Mu has officially signed young producer DJ Nate, the hyperactive sound is blowing up on a whole new level. Whether it's "witch house" bands in Brooklyn name-checking juke as an influence, or UK funky producers slipping juke tracks into their sets, lots of ears are locked in to the Chicago underground. This tune comes from another young producer, DJ Elmoe, who pairs juke's traditional breakneck bass tones and snapping hi-hats with a surprisingly pretty pitch-shifted vocal sample. More songs like this please. (via 20 Jazz Funk Greats)
Los Angeles boogie maestro Dâm-Funk simply does not stop working. After releasing his 5-LP Toeachizown and touring non-stop, one would expect Dâm to take and break at some point and recharge his batteries. Maybe the man doesn't need sleep, because the music just keeps on coming. Here's "HowUGonFuckAroundAndChooseABusta," another unreleased gem that Dâm is giving away for free, even though its funkified grooves and drum-machine claps sound just a fresh as the tunes on his myriad releases. Dude is a straight-up hustler.
A couple months ago, we shared some news about Buenos Aires-based cumbia digital label ZZK prepping a lengthy tour which would include a full list of North American dates. Well, some of those dates have been announced, and it looks like a bit of the West Coast will be treated to the likes of Tremor, El Remolón (pictured), Chancha via Circuito, and El G come late July/early August. Read more »
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