Los Angeles rapper/producer Jonwayne has garnered a good deal of buzz within the SoCal beat community over the past few months, and next week will see the release of the producer's first proper full-length, Bowser (artwork above). Yes, that's right, Jonwayne has chosen to name his newest LP after the legendary antagonist from the Mario Brothers series, and maybe not just for nostalgia purposes; it's also as a nod to the chosen fidelity of the majority of the producer's sound sources—8-bit. Nestled a little before midway into the video-game homage of an LP is "Crumbled Luna," which begins with a slightly off-kilter arpeggio that somehow teeters between blissful and menacing while tiny drums skitter below. Then come the chords; swelling, lush, and vibrant, they evoke a sense of drama that's not easy to come by within the sonic realm of outdated microchips, and yet it's a realm which Wayne seems to walk through with a confident, concentrated swagger. "Crumbled Luna," along with Bowser's 18 other 8-bit opuses, can be heard in full when the LP is released April 19.
Burgeoning UK producer Midland is set to return to the label that first thrust his productions into the arms of 2-steppin' garage fans the world over, Aus Music, with a new single, "Through Motion" b/w "Shelter," slated for release this coming May. Read more »
In less than a year, the totally on-fire Tri Angle label has quickly made a name for itself as a respectable source for dark electronic music influenced by hip-hop and R&B, but now the hub seems to be inching just a bit closer to releasing more or less straightforward hip-hop. The recent addition of burgeoning beatsmith Clams Casino—who's already produced for the likes of Lil B and Soulja Boy and dropped a much-lauded instrumental mixtape—to its slowly expanding roster is testament to that claim, and this distorted slow-burner of a tune further solidifies it. "Gorilla" is taken from Clams Casino's Rainforest EP (pictured above), and exhibits the artist's penchant for crafting thick washes of grimy fuzz, pitched-up/down vocal samples, syrupy basslines, and slow-slapping beats—then shrouding the whole thing in more shadowy atmospheres and gritty textures. We wouldn't mind hearing a flow over this tune, but seeing as how Clams Casino says that "these songs have always existed purely as instrumentals," we're more than happy to take the Rainforest EP's five tracks unencumbered by another artist's ideas when it drops on June 27. (via Pitchfork)
As we reported several months ago, the Brooklyn-based analog obsessives of Blondes are releasing a series of 12" EPs on the RVNG label this year, a run which kicked off with the "Lover" b/w "Hater" record. Here, we have a music video for the b-side of that 12", an "analog video synthesis" created by Phil Logan. Read more »
Clearly it's not all sunshine and beach parties down in the SoCal metropolis from which the beat scene sprouted. Yes, we've got another LA beatsmith of sorts on our hands in Chaz Lewis, who has delivered this menacing, dark journey through the land of heavy boom-bap under his ELOS alias. Staying true to the "gangster" for which the "g" in g-funk stands for, Lewis implements a simple kick-and-clap pattern, on top of which he throws harrowing side-chains and ungodly bass sounds that beg for the kind of stoic, slow-motion head nod often found in the grimiest of rap videos. A slippery, Transylvania-esque synth melody tops off the affair, making it one of the most deliciously evil beats in recent memory to come from the Low End camp. You can find "DunDeals" on ELOS' forthcoming debut EP, Flying Sky Fortress (artwork above), which is slated for release April 26.
There's not a ton of information floating around about Doctor Jeep—we know that his real name is Andre Lira and he's a Boston resident currently attending Northeastern University—but that doesn't lessen the potential enjoyment of "Level II." Fueled by rapidly rolling snares and a flurry of drum-machine beats, the song touches on vintage house—the chopped diva vocals certainly help with that—but also features enough negative space and swirly sonics to fit nicely alongside many of his fellow forward-thinking bass-music contemporaries. We're hoping the rest of the Aztec EP is similarly on point when it drops in June. (via Cluster Mag)
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