The best mix series are institutions. Like academies acknowledging talent within their field of focus, the top series in the DJ world—Fabric, DJ-KiCKs, and the like—serve as litmus tests for electronic-music talent you should take note of. Berlin's Watergate, like Fabric, has proven that it can translate its club appeal to a packaged product and that it knows how to cherry pick the right DJs to help with the job. Across its 11 releases, it has snagged some top-tier names in techy house, including Ellen Allien, Tiefshwarz, and, now, Diynamic label owner Solomun. Read more »
The ticking beat, rising tides of low end and ghastly vocal samples that The Range (a.k.a. James Hinton) uses in "Nothing Left" arouse a heavy-hearted energy in the Rhode Islander's production. Although the vocals are hard to place at first, the lyrics ("Til the lights go out, til the smoke clears out") make the sample easier to identify; they're lines form Nate Dogg's contribution to Eminem's "Till I Collapse," pitched up and diced to the point that the words are nearly unrecognizable. "Nothing Left" will be officially released in late July, when The Range unleashes his five-track Disk EP via Donky Pitch.
About a month ago, one of the "friends" on Diplo's new BBC 1Xtra program Diplo & Friends, Buraka Som Sistema's J-Wow, kicked off his mix with "Cameron," a siren-heavy, collaborative tune from Seattle's Astronomar and Melbourne-bred Swick. The two producers have been working together from across the world on their upcoming Horse Code EP for Enchufada, which drops on June 25. The record features three cuts of high-energy, juke-influenced rhythms and sliced-up vocal samples like those heard on "Cameron," which boasts pugnacious kick drums surrounded by vacuums of white noise and hectic air raid horns.
The 2012 edition of Sónar certainly kept us busy—check our review for proof—but amidst all the activity, XLR8R did manage to convince a couple of our favorite artists to sit down for a quick chat during the festival. Nina Kraviz actually pulled double duty at Sónar, performing live on Friday night in the SonarDôme and then closing out Sonar by Night in the early hours of the next day. We spoke with her soon after, and although she was operating on little to no sleep, the Russian producer happily talked about her Sonár experiences (past and present) and her new live show. Read more »
Last week, California-based label Body High—run by Samo Sound Boy and LOL Boys' Jerome Potter—posted a preview of the six tracks included in its newest release. The record arrives today from LA producer Floyd Campbell, whose bio remains more or less a mystery. "Drifted," the title track from the elusive artist's brand-new EP, revels in a rain of stuttering percussion and dollops of gummy synth tones that glide from stereo to mono. The tinny melody and heavily edited vocal samples take a page from LOL Boys' playbook, as Campbell matches tweaked tropical melodies and monosyllabic vocal samples with the sheer intensity of his track's machinegun beat.
London producer George FitzGerald is an interesting case. When he first surfaced in 2010 with "The Let Down" b/w "Weakness," the music was well received, albeit with the caveat that it sounded a whole lot like Joy Orbison. (It certainly didn't help that both artists were releasing music on the Hotflush label.) Cut to two years later, and things have changed pretty significantly. Joy Orbison isn't really turning out tunes that sound like "Hyph Mngo" any more, while FitzGerald has only delved deeper, weaving rich, tastefully nostalgic melodies over increasingly house-flavored drum patterns. He's also started his own label, ManMakeMusic, and continues to drop releases at a steady pace, the most recent being the Child EP, which drops next week via Aus Music. Without being hyperbolic, it's fair to say that FitzGerald is having a bit of a moment, which is why we invited him to put together this exclusive mix for the XLR8R podcast series. Read more »
Italian downtempo beatmaker Indian Wells has already doubled the number of tracks posted on his SoundCloud page since we shared his Shlohmo-meets-Actress grinder of a tune, "Deuce," last month, bringing the grand total to two. Now, the newcomer returns with eight shuffling, atmospheric bass tunes in the form of his debut record, called Night Drops. The title track roots the producer's scatterbrained, ephemeral loops in deep kicks, light clicks, and swelling waves of warm synth tones. It all creates an atmosphere that is as relaxed and pensive as it is melancholy, a sound that you can continue to indulge in by checking out the rest of Indian Wells' new release, after the jump. Read more »
As its name suggests, the New Jack Techno compilation represents a re-boot for Tiga's Montreal-based Turbo Recordings. The label, in operation since the early part of last decade, had been getting by with an unfocused platter of party-ready dance music that included Chromeo's breakthrough, Fancy Footwork, in 2007. The label has focused itself, though, as New Jack Techno showcases a roster of up-and-coming techno talent taking its cues from the ossified toughness of early-'90s Belgian techno and its hissy offspring that have taken up in Berlin in the time since. Read more »
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