Following his first release as Third Culture, the Options EP, Finland's Jori Hulkkonen is back with a full-length album, called Negative Time (artwork above). Here, we're treated to the textured "Gonna Track You Down," a bonus offering unveiled before that LP drops on September 24 via My Favorite Robot. The tune's lush soundscape is anchored by a pulsing bassline, as Hulkkonen's synth lines compete against the bang and rattle of his drums for the spotlight.
Like its "The Feeling" tune from a couple months ago, 2400 Operator's "Projects" opens with a big, thumping kick that sets the tone for the moody electro cut. The song—lifted off the Danish duo's forthcoming NV Electro EP—begins to soar as layers upon layers of screeching synths enter the lofty soundscape, all which is grounded by the deep bassline at its core. As the tune takes various turns, shuffling and ascending melodies pair with flitting hi-hats to take control of 2400 Operator's groove, effectively bolstering the tune's dancefloor potential. Look for the rest of the NV Electro EP when it drops on August 26 via Tartelet.
Although XLR8R makes an effort to regularly cover numerous strains of electronic music from around the globe, occasionally we recognize the need to take a closer look at a specific scene. In hopes of making these ventures a tad more organized, we've launched a new feature series, Welcome to..., in which we dig deeper into the sounds of a particular locale, speaking with the key players and exploring its various nuances.
It's been over 20 years since the Soviet Union collapsed and Russia was effectively reopened to the world. Yet somehow, the musical output of this massive country has largely remained a mystery to those of us in the West, and even the mighty internet has only managed to chip away at the divide. However, over the past two years, a slow trickle of forward-thinking Russian beats and bass has surfaced, slowly revealing a previously unheard wealth of beatmakers. Granted, electronic music in Russia is nothing new—as recently as 2009 we detailed the explosion of synth bands in Moscow—but this new wave of producers appears to be crafting beats and bass music while taking stylistic cues from their hip-hop- and dubstep-informed peers in present-day London and Los Angeles. A handful of these artists have become increasingly visible, but the details of their scene have largely remained unclear, prompting XLR8R to do a little digging and give some context to this growing population of significant beatsmiths coming all the way from—what is to us—the complete other side of the world. Read more »
The 2 Bears, the UK duo made up of Raf Daddy and Hot Chip's Joe Goddard, has had a fair share of its songs remixed by the likes of Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, Midland, In Flagranti, and Toddla T, but the latest batch of reworks will arrive from NYC house icon Todd Terry. The veteran DJ/producer will soon release an entire EP featuring versions of The 2 Bears' "Ghosts & Zombies" tune, one of which is the "Freeze Dub." The remix holds a consistent groove between the crashing cymbals, claps, and funky bassline, but is also a rollercoaster ride between its quieter side—characterized by filtered horns and vocal samples—and the moments of exploding synths and louder brass stabs.
Arriving almost exactly two years after Teengirl Fantasy's debut full-length, Tracer is as much an indication of the pair's progression as it is the pace at which the electronic-music spectrum has moved forward in that time span. Where 7AM had its share of chillwave remnants and hints of a Balearic touch—the subdued textures and hazy sonics very much in line with production tendencies of the time—the duo's sophomore album is stunningly crisp and bright, decisively hi-fi, and expertly sculpted. Still, to imply that Teengirl Fantasy has fit perfectly within the moving trends of the underground electronic-music world is misleading. In fact, the pair of Oberlin graduates has always seemed set on at least spinning the tropes of the day on their sides, if not bucking them almost entirely while nonetheless remaining completely relevant. Tracer continues in that vein, pulling inspiration from sources often deemed off limits by the outfit's contemporaries and yet managing to craft an album that not only appropriately fits, but outright succeeds within the current electronic-music spectrum. Read more »
Ahead of Aashton & Swift's upcoming Holy House EP, we're treated to an airy track driven by a heavy bassline from the Bristol-based duo. The resonance of the mix makes it sound like "Covenant" could have been recorded in a church, as layers of drum hits and what sounds like piano stabs are doused in reverb and echo throughout. The song's surprising funkiness picks up towards the end, which is complimented by vocal samples and busy synthline that builds with intensity. Before Aashton & Swift's new records drops on September 3 via Body Work, you can stream the whole thing after the jump. Read more »
Throughout the week, a whole lot of material gets posted here on XLR8R. And while we know—and love—that some hardcore readers will eagerly pour over every single news story, interview, podcast, video, and MP3 download that appears on the site, we also realize that for most people, it's impossible to see everything, which means that some quality XLR8R content is likely to get missed in the hustle and bustle of everyone's daily lives. Read more »
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