Cosmetics is the project of UFO!’s Ed Garro and s0n!ka’s Federico Gomez, and Cosmetics Surgery is their recently released dancefloor love child. The two dynamic DJs joined forces after mutual friend, DJ NME, introduced them during UFO!’s recent trip to San Jose, Costa Rica. Satisfying their basic need to “rock some serious low-end frequencies,” as noted in their bio, the EP combines Gomez’s liquid drum & bass prowess with Garro’s jet-propelled creative energy. “I’m Getting Hi” is a thumping, rhythmic straight-shooter, tempered by some vocal cooing, edgy synths, and catchy lyrics about “getting hi” in most of the world’s major cities. Lulu McAllister
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We still have a couple more months before Late of the Pier releases its debut full-length, Fantasy Black Channel, but the band has been generously sharing bits and pieces of the album with the populace, throwing several tracks up on its MySpace page, unleashing this hot remix, as well as another single, "Heartbeat," which we've put up today. The latter is a jumbled offering of synthesizers and guitars that shows off why these four lads are one of the few dance/rock hybrid fans worth following closely. The Erol Alkan-produced album, recorded at the band's home studio in Nottingham, will be available in full on January 13. Photo by Jon Bergman.
On his 2000 album, El Baile Alemán, Señor Coconut (a.k.a. Atom or Uwe Schmidt) offered Latin electronic covers of electronic godfathers Kraftwerk, replete with horns and sauntering samba rhythm. Now he takes a musical journey through the work of near-distant pop favorites like Prince and the Eurythmics, among others, on Around the World. On November 18th, Naçional Records will reissue the former El Baile Alemán, digitally and on CD, alongside his latest. On this namesake track off of the new album, Señor pays jazzy tribute to Daft Punk. Whoever thought that those gleefully simple lyrics wouldn't fit anything but synthesized robot vocals is in for a fun surprise. Lulu McAllister
Dapayk Solo is German DJ Niklas Worgt, who has graced the drum & bass, breakbeat, and tech-house scenes since 1993 under various monikers (Wooling, Sonstware, and Frauds in White, to name a few). “Devil’s House,” his most recent minimal techno offering, came out earlier this year under Mo’s Ferry Productions. Bouncy ball bass begins the album’s single, “How Low.” Tonally varied synths hang out in the lower registers, decorating the otherwise straightforward metronome 4/4, with scattered sci-fi accents throughout. Lulu McAllister
Mike Skinner of The Streets released his fourth album, Everything is Borrowed, in September. The distilled moment at the opening of the album's single, “Everything is Borrowed,” offers the impression of an adolescent kicking rocks along a train track in gray suburbia. Suddenly, low synths begin to speed forward, climbing octaves and growing louder until they emerge as an electric church organ pop melody beneath Skinner’s trademark sing-speak. Unlike his usual cheeky banter, however, the snarky Brit has toned it down lyrically. He investigates deep subjects with thoughtful sincerity: “Just when I discover the meaning of life, they change it… I love the rain on my scars.” Skinner is still fit, but just a little moodier this go around. Lulu McAllister
Brooklyn-born performer Barbara Tucker has provided vocals for Pet Shop Boys, Dave Steward, Deee-lite, Wyclef Jean, George Clinton, and Reel to Reel over the course of the last two decades. While her music generally resonates more in the European market, one should also consider her a legacy in the New York dance scene, as co-founder of The Underground Network (The Big Apple's longest running club). In this pulsing, eight-minute single, “One Desire Part 2,” the soulful dancefloor diva takes us “way down” into the belly of early house music, with help from Spanish DJ Guiseppe Tuccillo–an acquaintance from Tucker’s residency at Space in Ibiza. Lulu McAllister
Daniel Gray Kontar is a multi-dimensional guy, having excelled in music, journalism, poetry, and teaching, so it's fitting his debut album under his Replife guise turns out to be much more a straightforward hip-hop release. With help from producers like Dego, Bugz in the Attic's Kaidi Tatham, Mark de Clive-Lowe, and others, Kontar manages to turn the release into a compelling hybrid of nu-jazz, broken-beat, and soul that's a combination of sunny rhythms and serious lyrics.
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