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Download: Jose James "Blackmagic (Produced by Flying Lotus)"

Label: Brownswood

FlyLo fanatics around the globe are freaking about the appearance of his new Cosmogramma album next week, but folks are seriously sleeping on the fact that he produced several tracks on Blackmagic, the debut album from neo-soul crooner Jose James. While these songs may not be as otherworldly as Flying Lotus' efforts under his own name, "Blackmagic" proves that his jazz- and soul-inflected beats do provide a solid underpinning to James' silky smooth voice. A deluxe version of Blackmagic, which includes additional remixes and a non-album cut called "Visions of Violet" that was also produced by Flying Lotus, is available now. 

Average: 7.9 (29 votes)
 
 

Villalobos, Derrick May, Booka Shade, and More New Names Announced for Detroit's Movement Festival

Weeks before Detroit's 10th annual electronic music festival, Movement, is about to spring into high gear May 29-31, the festival just announced that Ricardo Villalobos will be making an exclusive US appearance. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 04/27/2010

Download: Shlohmo "My Neck My Back"

Label: Wedidit

Of all the young sprouts in the West Coast's increasingly dense network of blunted bedroom beatmakers, few have seen their named bandied about in 2010 as frequently as Shlohmo. Hounded with incessant "what's next?" interrogations ever since the release of Shlohmoshun Deluxe earlier this year, the young San Francisco producer has just made the My N3ck My B4ck R3mixes EP available for free download through the website of his own Wedidit Collective. The two-track EP features future-blapped reworkings of Montell Jordan's "This Is How We Do It" and Khia's "My Neck My Back." We've posted the latter here, and we're thinking that its trippy Game Boy beats will go a long way toward tiding over Shlohmo nation until he drops the Shohlmoshun Deluxe vinyl next month, followed by a new EP of original material this summer. 

Average: 7.8 (51 votes)
 
 

Download: Walls "Hang Four (Banjo or Freakout Remix)"

Label: Kompakt

Releasing this collaboration between Sam Willis (of Allez-Allez) and Allessio Natalizia (a.k.a. Banjo or Freakout) is an interesting move for Kompakt, as Walls' music straddles the fine line between slow-motion Balearic vibes and something more akin to Boards of Canada or cLOUDDEAD. However, while Walls' sound might not fit into any preconceived notions of Kompakt's sonic roster, there is something strangely suitable about the pairing—after all, this remix takes a sunny, beardo-disco track akin to Meanderthals and transforms it into something more like early White Rainbow, replete with beats, seemingly infinite loops, and soaring vocals. Kompakt has delivered a pleasant surprise here, and one can only hope that it continues along this pathway. Walls' self-titled debut will be released on May 10. 

Average: 8 (18 votes)
 
 

Review: Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings I Learned the Hard Way

Pick
Label: Daptone

Just as Brooklyn soul-revival impresarios Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings' live show has progressed from raw funk to Stax-style revue, their recordings have been a process of settling into the ensemble's talent. I Learned the Hard Way is easily the group's best effort yet, an album of classic songwriting and sharp musicianship belying its own complexity. From near-orchestral arrangements ("The Game Gets Old") to playful studio ease (recession anthem "Money"), this is a disc even Isaac Hayes would covet. Read more » 

Chromeo Announces August Album and Tour

Electro-synth-hop-hip-pop heads Chromeo have announced the August release of Business Casual, the band's third full-length, to arrive on Atlantic Records. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 04/26/2010

Mule Set to Release Powerhouse Records in May from KZA, Ekkohaus, and Soulphiction

One of the most sadly overlooked labels in the world is Japan's Mule Musiq, for while DJ Sprinkles (a.k.a. Terre Thaemlitz) records almost exclusively for the label, many of its other artists are only known to tried-and-true techno and house fans. With the label's May release schedule, though, there's no reason to not dig Mule's vibes, because it spans some of the deepest of deep house. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 04/26/2010

Download: Diamond K & Al Ripken Jr. "Hands in the Air (Bok Bok Remix)"

Label: Top Billin

A nu-Baltimore track is always going to be ripe for remixes from all sonic perspectives, and Diamond K and Al Ripken Jr.'s "Hands in the Air" is no exception. Here, XLR8R favorite Bok Bok turns some funky, tribal tricks, keeping the original's vocal stems while adding East Indian percussive elements, high-frequency whooshes, synth swells, and rimshots galore. Without a doubt, the London-based DJ/producer and Night Slugs label boss has created an ocean-jumping banger with this remix, proving again that he is one of the most forward-thinking minds in electronic music right now. 

Average: 7.6 (19 votes)
 
 

Ramadanman & Midland Drop New Single on Aus; Preview "Your Words Matter"

Although London producer Ramadanman has made a name for himself as one of the founders of the excellent Hessle Audio imprint, today he is releasing a single on another label, the similarly high-quality Aus Music. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 04/26/2010

Inbox: Bonobo

UK producer and multi-instrumentalist Simon Green has been making tunes under the name Bonobo for about a decade now. In that time, he's been called everything from "downtempo" to "jazzy" to "trip-hop," but regardless of what title his music is given, Bonobo has remained a consistently interesting DJ/producer with a keen ear for smooth and soulful sonics. We got a hold of Green after the release of his latest Ninja Tune album, Black Sands, for this special Inbox Q&A. Read more » 

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