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Download: Oval "Ah!"

During the 10 years that Markus Popp (a.k.a. Oval) has refrained from releasing any of his melodically experimental electronic tunes, it seems the producer has been quietly reformatting his approach. Ditching form for function, Popp used a $500 PC and some run-of-the-mill computer software to flesh out his weighty 15-track EP (!) and 70-track double-disc album (!!), scheduled for release in June and September, respectively. "Ah!" is the second track from the upcoming LP O, and it offers just the smallest taste of what to expect from Oval's over-sized project: plinking synths played by hand, impeccably programmed drum sounds, and lilting atmospherics rising and falling behind it all. 

Average: 8.3 (60 votes)
 
 

Download: Bumps feat. Guilty Simpson "Drums"

Label: Stones Throw

It ain't Madlib or Dilla, but Tortoise side-project Bumps provides Detroit MC Guilty Simpson with a tailor-made, dirty and distorted breakbeat that we wouldn't mind hearing on the rapper's next album. Chances are we won't get our wish, so we'll just let this three-and-a-half-minute beat suite play on repeat while we dream of what could be, and maybe mix in Koushik's remix every once in a while to change things up. 

Average: 7 (21 votes)
 
 

Download: Petrona Martinez "Aroro (Nate Mars Remix)"

NY's dub-minded bass DJ/producer Nate Mars worked out the South-of-the-Equator sonics heard on this of remix of "Aroro," originally done by oft-sampled Colombian vocalist Petrona Martinez. Amazingly, the singer didn't really start her music career until 2002 at the age of 63 (she made her money collecting sand for brick making prior to then), but continues to sing and perform now moving into her seventies. Mars' track places Martinez's vocals in the middle of spacey synths, tropical percussion sounds complimenting the 3/3 beat, and a rolling bassline that comes and goes—leaving the aging singer's words and melody relatively untouched. (via Ghetto Bassquake

Average: 7.8 (29 votes)
 
 

Download: Los Rakas "Abrazame (Uproot Andy Mix)"

Once Gyptian's "Hold Yuh" became the biggest crossover dancehall tune of 2010, it was only a matter of time before people started flipping the track and throwing new vocals over the song's distinctive piano riff. The folks at Dutty Artz first tipped us to "Abrazame," the Los Rakas version which finds the Oakland-based Panamanian dancehall prodigies wistfully singing and rapping en español. That was all well and good, but than Brooklyn beatmaker Uproot Andy sent us his remix of "Abrazame," which punches up the beat, nicely layers in some additional synths and percussion, and basically seizes a spot in the "Summer Jams 2010" playlist. If this lovelorn tune isn't on blast at your local Latin dance party, find yourself a new spot, because the DJs are seriously slipping. 

Average: 8.3 (127 votes)
 
 

Download: Supra1 "Still Believe (L-Vis 1990 Remix)"

EESH! Somebody please get Nelly on the line, because it just got really hot in here. Funky bass music champion L-Vis 1990 deconstructed the lead track from Polish production duo Supra1's debut EP, Still Believe, ditching Amy Douglas' vocal altogether and reformatting the whole tune from wobbly banger status to supreme future-house heat. We can't say for sure whose influence on the track is more responsible for the stellar outcome, so we'll opt to say that we'd like to hear more collaborations from L-Vis and the Supra1 duo in the future. (via FADER

Average: 6.8 (25 votes)
 
 

Download: Hardhouse Banton "Reign (Roska's 'Ard Food Remix)"

The original version of Hardhouse Banton's "Reign" surfaced in 2008, back when most of us were still saying, "UK funky? They're really calling this genre just 'funky'?" Nonetheless, the track's tropical percussion, garage-like shuffle, and flirtation with house music helped set the blueprint for what has become a global movement. The song obviously has staying power, as earlier today UK funky heavyweight Roska gave away his own remix of "Reign" for free via Twitter. Roska's version features his patented kicks and snares, and also inserts a little more space into the track, giving it a sexier, less manic vibe. At this rate, we all might be hearing "Reign" for another two years, and that's just fine with us. 

Average: 7 (31 votes)
 
 

Download: Arms & Suites "Brainwash"

We're not complaining, but every day our inboxes are filled with pleas from artists, managers, labels, and PR jockeys pleading with us to write something about their or, more often, their client's music. So sometimes it's nice when an artist we know simply passes something along without any sort of self-promoting agenda. That happened yesterday when Dubbel Dutch sent us a link to fellow Austin producer Arms & Suites. There was no sales pitch and no back story, just a link and a note that said "deep spacey bass weirdness." As it turns out, his brief description pretty much nailed it. Arms & Suites' music takes all the shuffle, offbeat rhythms, and chopped vocal samples of UK funky and London bass music and places them in a freezer, putting a whole new spin on what is often a high-octane genre. Even better, the producer's self-titled EP is available for free download via Bandcamp. All the songs are quality, but "Brainwash" particularly won us over with its use of a mellowed-out tribal guarachero beat. 

Average: 7 (28 votes)
 
 

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