We're not complaining, but every day our inboxes are filled with pleas from artists, managers, labels, and PR jockeys pleading with us to write something about their or, more often, their client's music. So sometimes it's nice when an artist we know simply passes something along without any sort of self-promoting agenda. That happened yesterday when Dubbel Dutch sent us a link to fellow Austin producer Arms & Suites. There was no sales pitch and no back story, just a link and a note that said "deep spacey bass weirdness." As it turns out, his brief description pretty much nailed it. Arms & Suites' music takes all the shuffle, offbeat rhythms, and chopped vocal samples of UK funky and London bass music and places them in a freezer, putting a whole new spin on what is often a high-octane genre. Even better, the producer's self-titled EP is available for free download via Bandcamp. All the songs are quality, but "Brainwash" particularly won us over with its use of a mellowed-out tribal guarachero beat.
We love Ariel Pink—after all, the LA troubadour is the cover star of our brand-new issue—so we're pretty jazzed to see that he's recorded a number of live, in-studio performances with his Haunted Graffiti bandmates. Watch "Menopause Man" above, and then head here to check out a few other tracks, including a couple of selections from the forthcoming Before Today album, which comes out on June 8. Read more »
Glitch and minimal pioneer Markus Popp returns after a 10-year silence with new sounds under his Oval moniker. Though 2003's So collaboration with vocalist Eriko Toyada was wildly successful, Popp decided to focus his efforts anew during his time away, utilizing live recording techniques and organic instrumentation. The culmination of these experiments is the 15-song Oh EP, coming out June 15, which will be followed by a full-length album later in the summer. Read more »
Brooklyn quintet Extra Life might not make the sort of music we're really into here at XLR8R, but the Tyondai Braxton remix of their "Head Shrinker" single is definitely up our alley. Braxton essentially turns a somewhat regal chamber-pop tune into an abstract techno jam worthy of inclusion on a Submerge Records compilation—the original's vocals are reduced to bug-like alien robot-speak, the instrumental stems become whooshes and stabs of sound, and a sickeningly distorted backbeat grounds the whole piece. Mix it with some juke or jit and get busy!
Subversive soul singer Jamie Lidell is merely days from releasing his fourth album (and third for Warp), Compass. We've already got a taste of the record in his new music video for "The Ring," and now there's another video floating about online of his live band warming up for their upcoming tour. Read more »
Well, now we've heard just about everything. Dubstep producers are copping samples from opera now, so pretty much anything goes at this point. On their debut collaborative effort, Dev79 and Thrills grabbed a bunch of pieces—including a clip of a wailing opera singer—from UK producer SDUK's "Clunge" track, and reformed the elements into a dirty piece of future-garage heavy with low end. The duo's rework is featured alongside the original and remixes from NastyNasty, Scott Matelic, and Phaseone on the Slit Jockey release, out now.
As you all should know quite well by now, we teamed up with that big ol' car/music/lifestyle company Scion to bring you our wide-ranging metropolitan to-do list, the XLR8R City Guide. One of our favorite aspects of the app is its consistently updated list of concerts, parties, and events, all happening in a US city near you. Here's our latest rundown of what's to come this weekend. Read more »
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