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Review: Syntaks Ylajali

While Copenhagen-based bandleader Jakob Skott has been quietly producing music as Syntaks for the better part of a decade, Ylajali represents an important new step for the project—not only is it the first Syntaks full-length on Ghostly, it's also the band's first album as a duo, as one-time guest vocalist Anna Cecilia has officially joined the group. Her addition is certainly welcome, adding some human warmth to the fuzzy drone of Skott's Boards-of-Canada-meets-Cocteau-Twins soundscapes. Read more » 

Download: Gucci Mane "No No No (Douster Remix)"

Label: Mad Decent

This is just some straight club heat. ZZK compatriot and XLR8R Artist to Watch Douster has flipped ATL rap hero Gucci Mane's "No No No" and stuffed it full of party-starting crunk-rave synths and stomping hip-hop beats. Mad Decent dropped this today as a bonus track from the forthcoming Gucci Mane mixtape, which also features production work from the likes of Diplo, Zomby, Salem, Memory Tapes, and Flying Lotus. The FREE mixtape, entitled Diplo Presents: Free Gucci (Best of The Cold War Mixtapes), drops next Monday. (via Mad Decent

Average: 6.3 (40 votes)

Bob Blank Retrospective Coming Soon on Strut

In the heyday of disco, if you were a young, out-of-pocket group looking for quality recording and production work, there was one go-to studio and one in-house producer to rely on: Bob Blank and his Blank Tapes studio. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 01/07/2010

Podcast 118: Shortstuff

The bevy of music bubbling out of the London underground still doesn't have a proper name, but we here at XLR8R are happy to keep lapping up the infectious mix of house, garage, funky, and bass sounds being produced by artists like Shortstuff. With only a handful of proper releases to his name—albeit on top-flight labels like Planet Mu, Ramp, and Berkane Sol—Shortstuff (a.k.a. Richard Attley) also runs the Blunted Robots label (with fellow XLR8R fave Brackles) and has quickly risen to the top of this nebulous scene. Read more » 

Review: Kid Sister Ultraviolet

Label: Downtown

Ultraviolet took three years to come out, but that duration only confronts the listener on "Pro Nails," the Kanye-guesting acrylics jam that broke Kid Sister: it sounds not so much dated as simply known—a remarkable shelf life for a blog hit. Nothing here challenges its single potential, but Ultraviolet thumps throughout (courtesy of production from boyfriend A-Trak, XXXchange, et al.), equal parts anthem-house and straight-up joyrapping. Read more » 

Nguzunguzu Gives Away Self-Released EP for Free Download

Following their free mix that LA-based Nguzunguzu hooked us up with for the holidays, the world-beat and big-bass-toting duo has bestowed another gift upon the internet's masses. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 01/06/2010

South Rakkas Crew Drop a Free New Album

It's been a minute since boundary-pushing dancehall outfit South Rakkas Crew have released some original new music, which is perhaps why the guys are feeling especially generous and rewarding their ever-patient fans with a free new album. Entitled The Stimulus Package, the record is available today for free download over at the Mad Decent website. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 01/06/2010

Maga Bo Drops New Free Mixtape

Though based primarily in Rio de Janeiro, DJ/producer Maga Bo is a man of the world—not only set on delving deep into the world's many cultures, but consistently working on combining them within in his mixes and production work. Maga Bo's methods, which usually include using his laptop, a microphone, and some local flavor, are showcased in full on his latest mixtape, Outras Terras. Read more » 

  • Filed under: news
  • 01/06/2010

Download: Schlachthofbronx "Vem Que Tem feat. Marina (Lorenz Rhode Remix)"

German purveyors of wacky electro and global bass sounds, Schlachthofbronx, handed over the pieces of forthcoming dancefloor burner "Vem Que Tem," featuring vocals from former Bonde Do Role vocalist Marina, to fellow countryman Lorenz Rhode. Rhode stays in line with the duo's initial vibe and uses their fiery source material to craft his own hyperactive dance tune fueled by percussive synths, bouncing beats, and stripped-down vocals. If you like the results, make sure to check out Rhode's Something Hot EP, out next week on the Exploited label. 

Average: 7.1 (44 votes)

Review: Felix You Are the One I Pick

Label: kranky

Unfortunately, the opening song from this British chamber-pop duo spoils the entire album. On “Death to Everyone But Us,” gently woven piano and guitar melodies blow thick espresso fumes into the air before Lucinda Chua mews the off-putting song title. While one might expect an ironic, punk counterpoint to follow, the rest of the album is basically placid, coffeehouse muzak. There are the funny moments—Chua repeatedly tells the listener she would never let YOU ride her on “I Wish I Was a Pony”—but overall, the muttering-poet routine quickly grows monotonous. Read more » 

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