XLR8R's annual Best of the Year coverage got off to a solid start yesterday with the first batch of tunes lifted from the 100 most popular downloads we posted throughout 2013. We've already offered music from the likes of Holy Other, Hackman, Slugabed, Bibio, and Bodhi, among plenty of others, and our latest chunk of this year's Top Downloads list highlights productions from Clams Casino, xxxy, Nils Frahm, Jacques Renault, Bondax, Zebra Katz, and more. All of tunes that landed between numbers 80 and 61 can be streamed and freely downloaded after the jump. Read more »
It's times like these that one wonders when Jimmy Edgar finds time to actually, you know, sleep. Following the release of his Mercurio EP last week, the ceaseleslly prolific producer/DJ has deliverd yet another new remix—this time taking on "Power," a cut from Moscow-based indie/funk outfit Pompeya. While it's hard to find exactly where Edgar has buried Pompeya's original tune, it's also hard to argue with his work here, as he bounces back and forth between a series of locked-in grooves and cleverly precise builds which continually push the rework's cyclical rhythms forward. Featured here as a free download, Jimmy Edgar's remix of "Power" is also set to appear on Pompeya's Tropical Remix record when it drops in January of next year via Brooklyn label No Shame.
The calendar only flipped to December a few days ago, but it seems that much of the music world has already begun to set its sights on the end of the year. More specifically, everyone seems to be looking back at the last 11 months and evaluating what pieces of music were amongst the year's best. XLR8R is no different, and when our list of 2013's best releases surfaces during the next few weeks, there's little question that Amygadla, the long-awaited sophomore LP from DJ Koze, will make the cut. It's been a big year for the veteran German producer, which is why we thought he would be an excellent candidate to put together the final XLR8R podcast of 2013. Read more »
The Chemistry—a nascent French publication covering music, visual art, and fashion—is celebrating its second birthday with a curated compilation of bass-informed sounds, titled LITHIUM, which will drop on December 8. Dublin producer Clu's cameo, "Jade," pairs a highly melodic, arpeggiated synth squiggle with an evasive drum pattern that seems to operate in multiple, simultaneous time signatures. Around the halfway mark, the cut relaxes into a slightly more comfortable rhythm, as disembodied voices shout through the unquantized drum spasms and keyboard glides before finally coming to a rest.
The sole Canadian representative of the increasingly international Night Slugs contingent, Egyptrixx (a.k.a. David Psutka) has followed up his ambitious 2011 debut album, Bible Eyes, with the equally inventive A/B Til Infinity. Psutka's work as Egyptrixx has always operated with a slightly unconventional approach to club music, but the woozy synths and atmospheric tendencies of his debut album nonethless complemented Night Slugs' dystopian, experimental reconfigurations of dance-music tropes. A/B Til Infinity largely moves things further away from the dancefloor, with nine tracks and very few kick drums to be found on any of them. Egyptrixx's excellently weird recent mix for Night Slugs' ongoing podcast series signaled the producer's interest in exploring noise and texture as elements on an equal footing with the rawest, most stripped-back club beats, and that tendency has held firm with A/B Til Infinity's multi-dimensional, surface-oriented techno. Read more »
British producer Aeirs TV (a.k.a. Joss Carter) obscures his techno collages in a thick feedback mist, culling inspiration from the same ineffable, cryptic source as producers like Actress or Vessel. On "Nails"—taken from a free three-song EP called Relife—Carter sets a percussive pulse underneath eerie drone loops that soak through the entire mix, gradually building to a discernable techno groove. The unabashedly dark cut then unexpectedly drops into a sermon about Jesus' crucifiction, before returning for a second round of claustrophobic rhythm.
Although they haven't gotten as much attention as the records under his own name, Melbourne's Mic Newman has been releasing tracks under the Fantastic Man alias since 2010. Heartbreaker, his latest EP under that banner, is not too far removed from what one expects of Newman—its three originals offer deeper tracks with inflections from old-school house and '80s boogie, with dashes of vocals for good measure. It's not an especially daring EP, but even hardened house heads will find bits to latch onto. Read more »
London's Young Turks label has been showcasing its diverse roster throughout the year with a limited-edition 12" series titled YT2013, each release featuring two unreleased cuts or previously released highlights. Today, the label has announced a third and final 12", along with a complete collection of the tracks in CD and digital formats. Read more »
On its latest 4x4 EP collection, the 1980 label offers up four new tunes from the techier side of house, including this sleek workout from budding Londoners Carlotek and Raisingtheroof. Focusing on a set of descending chord stabs for most of its six-plus-minute run, "Donna" is a calm, collected dance tune, but not one afraid to venture into percussion-heavy breaks or unexpected moments of refracted vocal processing. And even then, Carlotek and Raisingtheroof never take their eyes off the prize: the low-end bump which makes the pair's tribal-laced track ideal for steamy dancefloors.
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