Pacific Northwest bass producer Simon Ho (a.k.a. Cedaa) is another young music maker taking a page or two out of the footwork/juke playbook for his own tunes, although Ho likes to call his sound Bellingham bounce. So leave it to newly minted XLR8R scribe Dave Quam—who wrote this fine article on the Chicago-based genres for our latest print issue—to sign three of Ho's tracks for the first release of his new imprint, the cleverly titled Free Bass. The opener of Cedaa's Old Growth EP is "Escalade," probably the closest relative to footwork featured on the release. All the key attributes are present: incessant vocal samples, woofer-cooking bass, breakneck 808 beats, and halftime claps. Yet Ho still manages to make those trademark sounds his own with the injection of more melody into his low-end, a serious helping of warm synth pads, and a particular sheen uncommon in your average Chicago-born footwork production. You can download the whole Old Growth EP for free via Quam's It's After the End of the World blog, here.
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Just in case you were wondering, this new jam from German DJ/producer/label head Mathias Modica (a.k.a. Munk) isn't an Italian cover of Madonna's decade-starting return to the spotlight, "Music," though it certainly shares the same energetic dancefloor-ready vibes. We're not sure why songs simply about music are so often such upbeat dance tunes, but regardless, we're sold on Munk's addition to that list. "La Musica" starts with a dark piano and bass melody backed by a solid four-on-the-floor beat and a bit of vocal help before things elevate a bit in mood with the introduction of a luminous wash of rave synths. Eventually, all of the sounds coalesce into a busy club tune that we prefer over the aforementioned diva's single. You can hear what other music Munk has to offer when he drops his five-song Mondo Vagabondo EP on October 18 through his own Gomma label.
Even though Dover, TX, producer Blixaboy has been making music in a number of forms for nearly 20 years, his forthcoming full-length album is a sort of re-introduction of the artist's forward-thinking dubstep- and bass-leaning sound. Blixaboy will release Kliks & Politiks through his own label, Astroblaque, on October 19, but we've got the first leak from that record for you today. "Sci-Fi Jack" is the third cut from Politiks, and finds the tunesmith smack dab in the middle of some low-end gymnastics out in the middle of space. Through "Jack"'s near five-minute runtime, Blixaboy never once lets up from his bouncing bass rhythms or touches down from his cosmic sound explorations—moving deeper instead to the outer reaches of dubstep's club-ready sonics. You can listen to all of Politiks now, over on the Blixaboy/Astroblaque website, here.
Bet you didn't think it would be possible to make Salem's (pictured above) blown-out, depraved, and bastardized music any bit creepier than it already is, did you? We never even considered the option ourselves, but here we are: San Francisco's oOoOO has remixed Salem's "Asia," creating something that sounds like it needs to be chained to a post in your grandmother's basement. The familiar distorted smash of drum-machine sounds still remains from Salem's original, along with snippets of wavering, ghostly moans the trio used for vocals, but the 'witch house' brother oOoOO decided to give "Asia" a cleaner hip-hop beat, a handful of twinkling synths, and some dismembered vocal samples to alter the track to his liking. Anyone looking to add another song to their Halloween party mixes needs look no further, and anyone looking to score some free Salem gear needs look no further than our contest going on here.
Stones Throw has announced an upcoming album from former Slave frontman and funk music OG Steve Arrington to be entirely produced by Dam-Funk. "I Be Trippin" is the first taste of their collaboration—although Arrington did also guest on "4 My Homies" on Dam-Funk's "Hood Pass Intact" 12"—and it finds Dam cooking up a classic-sounding, laid-back, feel-good West Coast beat complete with bubbling synth pads, some classy electric piano, and a fat bassline. Layers of Arrington's vocal float over the beat going through some of the many scenarios where he be "trippin" and throwing out commands to "drop that funk." This track is a must for any slow-motion pool party/bbq you've been planning. No word on when the album is due, but we'll let you know as soon as we do.
After releasing music from Neon Indian, How to Dress Well, and several other high-quality, lo-fi artists, it would be totally okay for the folks at Lefse Records to rest on their laurels a bit. Instead, the Sacramento-based label is indulging its inner TLC impulses and expanding with a new series called Way Slow. In the words of label head Matt Halverson, "Each release will be a unique creation from start to finish. Many of our artists are going to be releasing material that is well outside of their normal sound, some will be collaborations, some will be from parts of the world where most of us will never see... Our physical products will be hand wrapped/sewn/carved individually for every release and presented as a heartwarming package of beautiful sound." The first offering comes on October 12 from London's Banjo or Freakout, and if the rest sounds as good as the dreamy, washed-out haze-pop of "Over There," this Way Slow series could be something special. Future installments are forthcoming from artists like Houses/Teen Daze, Phaseone, Ganglians, Sonny Smith, Sunnybrook, and Tape Deck Mountain.
Scottish producer Offshore (a.k.a. Robertson) is a recent addition to the Big Dada roster, signed off the strength of his self-titled EP on Stuff, that label's final release before becoming part of the ultra-rad Numbers conglomerate. Like many of his fellow Scots, Offshore shares some sonic territory with dudes from the LA beat scene, not that we're complaining. "Round and Round" trundles along on bouncy hip-hop beats filled out by fuzzy synths and lighthearted 8-bit flourishes. It's taken from the Aneurysm EP, which comes out October 19 and will be followed by a full-length album next year.
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