Well, now we've heard just about everything. Dubstep producers are copping samples from opera now, so pretty much anything goes at this point. On their debut collaborative effort, Dev79 and Thrills grabbed a bunch of pieces—including a clip of a wailing opera singer—from UK producer SDUK's "Clunge" track, and reformed the elements into a dirty piece of future-garage heavy with low end. The duo's rework is featured alongside the original and remixes from NastyNasty, Scott Matelic, and Phaseone on the Slit Jockey release, out now.
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Brooklyn quintet Extra Life might not make the sort of music we're really into here at XLR8R, but the Tyondai Braxton remix of their "Head Shrinker" single is definitely up our alley. Braxton essentially turns a somewhat regal chamber-pop tune into an abstract techno jam worthy of inclusion on a Submerge Records compilation—the original's vocals are reduced to bug-like alien robot-speak, the instrumental stems become whooshes and stabs of sound, and a sickeningly distorted backbeat grounds the whole piece. Mix it with some juke or jit and get busy!
The UK's Gold Panda is an ace beatmaker who shares more in common with the current LA beat scene than chillwave artists like Toro Y Moi or Baths, but this remix from Seams shows an undeniable affinity with the latter crop of young producers. Using miniscule sections from the original's miniscule vocal samples, Seams allows his remix of "You" to build slowly, going from repetitive, one-note loops to multi-channel, syncopated summer hiss. While the original's crisp hip-hop beats are somewhat missed, there is a weirdly hazy quality to this remix that really satisfies the ears. Gold Panda's You EP will be released on June 15, and also features remixes from Osborne, Dam Mantle, and Minotaur Shock.
LA's Ja Prawn might be one of the weirder bands we've heard in while— after all, combining boogie-funk, analog synth fetishism, and weird prog-rock song structures isn't typical, but "Suicide Party" is proof that the eclectic mix really works. With a bassline that could have come from an early Larry Heard project, gauzy synths recalling '70s AM rock radio, and electric guitar bits that wouldn't be out of place on a Journey reunion tour, "Suicide Party" is a strange yet extraordinarily catchy earworm. Be sure to check out the rest of Ja Prawn's first album here, where it is available for free download.
Taken from Javelin's second full-length, No Más, "Off My Mind" contains some of the sonic elements one would expect from the tropicalia-loving Brooklyn cousins, as well as some surprises. While bells, a nicely synthesized West Indian rhythm, and squeaky keys make their presence known, the multi-tracked vocal harmonies are more reminiscent of something from the Avalanches, or even Stereopathic Soul Manure. In other words, "Off My Mind" is a little bit more twee than one would expect, but is still a lovely slice of sentimental heat, perfect for warm, rainy days.
One might think that a song titled "Finn Bikkjen!" (or "Find Dogs!") would have a more gloomy or even frantic vibe to it, as there's nothing quite as upsetting and stressful as losing your pet and searching far and wide for it. However, Norway's Casiokids have taken the experience down another road for its latest single from the forthcoming sophomore album Topp Stemning På Lokal Bar. The quintet's song is an immediate and playful piece of synth-heavy indie-pop with a thin layer of Beach Boys-esque falsetto wafting about the upbeat grooves. It may not mirror the way losing a dog feels, but it'll certainly give you the energy to go out there and get your buddy back.
It's a little strange that "Cherry Moon" comes from the final quarter of the debut album from FlyLo compadre Lorn; the track opens with a distant intro that slowly revs into a full-frontal assault of warped beats, thick motorik bass, and glowing synth and string melodies. The song could easily lead off an album. However, its more sullen—dare we say lovelorn?—tone fits the track's resting place as the beginning of the end on Lorn's forthcoming Brainfeeder release, Nothing Else.
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