Portland-based imprint and collective Dropping Gems is kicking off its year of releases with the upcoming Find EP by hometown duo Philip Grass. Before the 4-track record is available in its entirety, we're treated to the soothing vibes of EP cut "All I Need." The intimate production opens up with a soft piano and woodwind melody, accompanied by gentle vocal snippets and a minimal kick-drum pattern. Eventually, "All I Need" changes its pace halfway through, with starry synth glimmers and a more prominently emphasized drum construction taking over the mix. Philip Grass' Find EP officially drops on March 4.
Downloads - Page 7
On his remix of Skin Town's (pictured above) "Midnight Lover" (from the bedroom R&B pair's debut LP The Room, released last year via LA label Time No Place), Secret Circuit injects the slow crawl of the original production with a new dose of gurgling percussion. Initially hinting at a sort of Balearic edge, the six-plus-minute rework slowly becomes more and more unhinged. Its loose percussive layers join with appropriately unfocused synth swells that build towards the kind of electronic wizardry we've come to expect from longtime sonic experimenter Eddie Ruscha, especially when found operating as Secret Circuit.
Luca Lozano and Mr. Ho have combined forces to deliver London imprint Disc Over's latest four-track EP, Dobb Meep/ Different Circles. In addition to original work from Lozano and Ho, the upcoming EP will also feature this remix from label boss Tim Green (pictured above), who launched Disc Over last year with a release of his own. Green's eight-minute interpretation of "Dobb Meep" is built around a sturdy drum rhythm and comes rife with buoyant synths. In the end, the rework strays away from the original tune's playful attributes, instead favoring a more mysterious atmosphere built on the back of the track's foreboding bassline.
With his Shades EP set to drop next month, Turqoise Summers has passed along a slice of dark funk to preview the upcoming six-track effort. Really, he's picked a fine selection to entice listeners with "Out From the Shadows"—an instrumental tune so G'd up and funk-laced it's almost surprising to not hear Snoop Dogg or Magic Don Juan imparting their knowledge of "the game" over it. Nonetheless, "Out From the Shadows" stands well on its own, its laid-back groove used as a simple platform to run through a number of glowing synth melodies and lush, bluesy chords. Before Turquoise Summers' Shades EP arrives on March 25, the entire effort can be previewed over on Bandcamp.
Brooklyn-based producer Alexi Delano, who just released the "My Busted SH-101" single via Ghostly's Spectral Sound imprint earlier this week, has elected to give away a special track for Valentine's Day. Wrapt Up in It" has been streaming online for several months, but Delano, who describes the tune as a tribute to his all-time favorite voice, Marvin Gaye, decided that the time was right to officially share it with the world. The sultry, late-night number, which samples vocals from Gaye's "Your Precious Love," rests on a billowing bed of soft pads and subtly kicking techno drums. Moreover, it's exactly the kind of thing we'd like to hear soundtracking a Valentine's dance party.
As far as Valentine's Day freebies go, this one from London producer and recent XLR8R podcast contributor Visionist is about as dark as they come. The beatless, two-minute track focuses on a ghostly melody and soft bell chords to create its unsettling atmosphere, which is only made more brooding by the addition of a subtly manipulated vocal sample which creeps into the production's final bars. When all is said and done, one is left to wonder if Visionist is even a fan of Valentine's Day, or maybe his idea of love is just a bit darker than most. Either way, we'll take a free tune from the Londoner on just about any holiday.
From the opening bars of Glenn Astro's "Dub Tears," it's easy to identify where the former part of the track's name comes from—the six-plus minute tune which closes out the German producer's forthcoming effort for Tartelet laces its low-swung house with a dub mentality from the onset. The "tears" side of the equation takes a bit longer to reveal itself, though. In truth, "Dub Tears" does flirt with the sentimental side of house early on—utilizing plaintive strings and soft-spoken chords to ride atop the track's relaxed shuffle—but it isn't until the three-minute mark that Astro segues into his production's elongated breakdown, revealing a telling vocal sample about a past "pure love" before the tune rolls on to even deeper territory. Along with "Dub Tears," the rest of Glenn Astro's four-track Chemistry EP will see a full release on February 24.
XLR8R Downloads Player