Groundislava (a.k.a. Jasper Patterson) may hail from Los Angeles and hold a membership in Shlohmo's Wedidit crew, but it's hard to argue that the young beatmaker hasn't carved out a sound all his own. Over the past few years, he's dropped a steady series of releases, most recently this summer's TV Dream EP. On August 28, he'll be following that up with a new album, Feel Me, a full-length effort on Friends of Friends that finds Groundislava synthesizing his loves of dreamy soundscapes, videogame nostalgia, and booming hip-hop beats into a singular musical vision. It seems that he's reached a new level of artistic maturity, which is why we invited him to put together an exclusive mix for the XLR8R podcast series. Read more »
The synth builders (and, more recently, app devlopers) at Moog have announced a signifigant update to the Animoog iPad/iPhone app, including an improvement to the use and implemetation of MIDI. Read more »
The latest roster addition over at Kastle's Symbols label is UK producer Walter Ego, who dropped his Shadows EP just today. Whereas the record's title track is more reminiscent of Burial's oft-borrowed sound, "Rebounds" is undoubtedly more upbeat, percussive, and well-suited for the club. The song's chopped vocals hover over a steady groove that's spearheaded by the deep and wavy bassline, which is punctuated by dynamic accents coming from Walter Ego's smacking claps and tinny cymbal crashes.
Nostalgia in music can be a tricky thing. In most cases, a balance is sought somewhere between the reverence an artist has for a certain bygone era or style and their ability to fit that into a modern context. Greeen Linez—the duo of Tokyo-based producer A Taut Line and Chris Greenberg of indie-lounge outfit Hong Kong in the '60s—is not bashful about its love for cheeseball jazz and new-age spiced muzak on Things That Fade, the group's debut LP (which follows the self-titled EP the pair dropped along the same lines last year). Complete with the occasional nods to '90s dance music, the album hits on a few worthwhile combinations, but largely proves exhausting in its unrelenting retro indulgences. Read more »
The latest collection of vintage sounds scheduled to arrive from the crate diggers at Strut is a two-disc "definitive retrospective" for DJ/producer Cajmere's seminal Chicago label, Cajual. Read more »
UK-based producer Lorenz System (formerly known as Beacon, who you may remember from previous posts) has a few tracks bubbling up from his new moniker, one of which is the pounding, dreamy, and synth-heavy "2k." The production opens with a dark bassline and punchy beat, but is quickly joined by more playful elements. Quick claps, starry synths, and freestyle-esque rhythms help balance out the intro's moodier side, and just as "2k"'s vibe really starts to pick up, everything cuts out right at the peak.
Like Hudson Mohawke and Lunice's recent self-titled EP as TNGHT, "Beamer"—the latest single from young Liverpool-based producer Melé—is brash, energetic, and has little time for subtlety. But whereas TNGHT's music straddles the line between hip-hop and the more colorful ends of 140-bpm bass music, "Beamer" pairs its maximalist synth lines with the livelier, rough-edged UK sounds of grime—providing a platform for former N.A.S.T.Y Crew member Kano to deliver one of his most likeable performances since 2004's "Ps & Qs." Read more »
East Coast DJ/producer and Italians Do It Better label head Mike Simonetti has announced that his latest project, a new label he's named New Jersey, will release a 12" featuring two collaborative tracks from Simonetti and Monty Luke. Read more »
UK "goth-pop" chanteuse Charli XCX (pictured above) gets a bare-bones reworking here, courtesy of Numbers affiliate Deadboy. The shadowy tunesmith picks apart the singer's edgy new single, "You're the One," only nabbing fragments of her vocal performance to weave throughout a tumbling bassline and garage-leaning rhythm, all of which makes for an unsettling-but-effective dancefloor tune.
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