With a loose, frenetic synth line fluttering over deep, dry kicks and bass throbs, it is easy to compare the techno offerings of Baltimore's Graham Hatke's latest to the recent outpourings of Omar-S, or even a Theo Parrish joint from the early aughts. But there is an undeniable spaciness to Hatke's sound palette on "Miles Away" that brings Michoacan or even Idjut Boys to mind, which sets it apart from its American influences in an interesting way. Definitely an early evening floor-filler, Hatke shows a talent that we hope to hear more from soon.
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Next week will see the release of Triangulation, the second album from Scuba (a.k.a. Paul Rose). "Before" offers a smoldering glimpse of the record, which finds the Hotflush label boss dabbling in house, techno, and other styles while further pushing the boundaries of exactly what a dubstep artist is supposed to sound like. With its vinyl crackle and sultry female vocal, "Before" actually resembles vintage Massive Attack. Factor in the song's pensive synth tones and you've got some downbeat audio gold. Make sure to also peep the kaleidoscope-powered video for "Before," which was put together by director Sam Geer.
The powerhouse duo of Georgia Anne Muldrow and Declaime (a.k.a. Dudley Perkins) join up with Kazi on this seriously funkified track. The Black Milk-produced track features a dusty, shuffling beat with an ethereal piano loop riding over it all, conjuring the sort of spacey hip-hop journey that has become Muldrow and Perkins' trademark.
In the fine tradition of remixing female singer-songwriters' lovely originals into club bangers, The Juan Maclean has completely transformed Via Tania's majestic "Fields" into a floor-filling, ass-shaking slice of tech-house gold. Using only the choicest stems of Via Tania's purring vocals, angular guitar work, and quirky percussion, there is certainly something of Radioslave here, and perhaps even a bit of Nima Gorji's "Hopp Hopp," a 2009 track which liberally sampled traditional gypsy music. Like all good techno, the changes are slight, unexpected, and completely mind-melting. It would behoove any DJ to play this if they want to see a dancefloor explode, especially given the piece's stunning, washed-out apex. If you're in the mood to see the folksy stylings of Via Tania with backing band Seabear, then head to SXSW this week!
Jahcoozi certainly knows how to put the dub in dubstep, as is evidenced by this edit of "Barefoot Dub." Filled with delayed horn samples, lazer stabs, wonky percussion, and gut-rumbling bass, the track is a true cross-genre pollination. Some acid squelch and lovely female vocals reminiscent of Martina Topley-Bird round out the track, making for a perfect mix with anything from the newest funky banger to a Maxinquaye-era Tricky slice. Jahcoozi's new album, Barefoot Wanderer, will be released on April 19.
Last fall, LA duo Rainbow Arabia remixed a song from Pictureplane, and now the bedazzled, Denver-based artist has returned the favor. Taken from an upcoming free remix EP, Pictureplane's version of "Kabukimono" slows down the original, running Rainbow Arabia's electro-exoticism through a gritty, lo-fi filter and ultimately creating something with a little more punch. You could say that this is art-school-warehouse-global-lo-fi-rave-bass music, but that sounds like a fucking nightmare. This song is actually good.
New York's The Golden Filter sound like a mid-'80s Italo band with an icy Nordic gloss, particularly on "Hide Me," which channels Doctors Cat's anthemic qualities as much as Annie's synthetic love-pop. Arpeggiated bass propels the track, with lush pads and tinkling melodic flourishes riding on the same wavelengths as vocalist Penelope's thin, breathy vocals. With extensive tour dates coming up, including an multiple performances at SXSW this week, The Golden Filter are ready to take the synth-pop world by storm.
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