We're not entirely sure if it's a good or bad thing when you can't tell if a song is made with organic or synthetic instruments, analog or digital devices, people or machines. On one hand, it gives the music a sort of allure because of its ambiguous mystique, but editorially speaking, it's that much more difficult to properly credit sounds to their rightful source. Maybe we're just splitting hairs, but we shouldn't all just sit around being wrong, right? Well, regardless of how these sounds were made, "Yeagh" by Dublin duo Richie Egan and Niall Byrne (a.k.a. VisionAir) recalls the warm vintage synths found in the ambling Krautrock grooves of yore, though obviously invigorated with the sheen of modern production technology. The vibe of the song, which closes out the pair's brand-new A Vision EP (available for free download here), feels like an esoteric Tangerine Dream, Can, or even Silver Apples tune as performed by a guitarless Ratatat on quaaludes. Maybe that sounds weird, but so does this song—in a good way.
Downloads - Page 474
"New Beach House song."—it's a phrase that stirs even the soundsystem-inclined denizens of XLR8R HQ. Even if it is a holiday song, it's a Beach House holiday song, and no other indie outfits are more warranted a try at pulling on our heart strings with seasonal music than that of Victoria Legrand and Alex Scally. "I Do Not Care for the Winter Sun" finds the duo returning to their humble beginnings of home-recorded sounds—effectively bolstering the piece's intimacy like it was made just for whomever might be listening at the moment. Though the song does start off with some obligatory sleigh bell jingles and Legrand even slips in a couple "this time of year" references, everything else carries on as per usual for Beach House, which means sadly beautiful organ drones, subtle guitar strums, angelic vocal melodies, and ephemeral piano flourishes. It may work best as a 'winter song,' but "I Do Not Care for the Winter Sun" could've easily made a fine stopgap on the duo's captivating Teen Dream record. (via Gorilla vs. Bear)
Add yet another track to the growing list of remixes for Jamie Woon's Burial-co-produced song, "Night Air." UK 2-stepper Deadboy puts his shuffling version next to interpretations from the likes of Ramadanman and newcomer Becoming Real, which collectively create a trifecta that trumps the original, at least to our ears. This remix lets Woon's voice do its thing while a rolling bassline grooves with Deadboy's go-to riddim and a handful of assorted synth melodies waft about the proceedings. Further into "Night Air (Deadboy Remix)," the producer starts toying with the singer's croon, whimsically pitch-shifting it as the synth stabs grow in intensity.
We all know the well-worn adage: Less is more. Here, that philosophy is put to good use by Brighton-based producer Greymatter on his remix of the forthcoming single from Randomer & Adverse, "Alizé." It's not that Greymatter is making minimalist bass music or any such thing, but when juxtaposed with Randomer & Adverse's bubbling originals and HomePark's own deep remix of the title track, it's easily the most pared down of the bunch. A lone tambourine and kick-drum rhythm make up the spine of "Alizé (Greymatter Remix)," on which the producer employs a chopped-up vocal loop, monotone organ stabs, a massive bass drop every so often, and a couple more percussion sounds. There are certainly more than, say, 10 sounds in this shuffling tune, but Greymatter gives each one of them enough room to breathe that you could probably pick out the noises individually at any given time, though you're likely to be too busy moving to the jam's thick groove to even bother giving that a try. You can check out the EP's other three tracks when Alizé drops on January 10 via Super.
Man, Dublin's All-City label is pretty lucky there's an almost inexhaustible amount of beat music coming out of Southern California; their LA Series 10" releases could potentially continue on until Armageddon hits and wipes us all out. Closing out the series' first year, the imprint has enlisted Brainfeeder's resident lady producer, Tokimonsta, and fresh face Mike Gao to come together on a slab of wax called LA Series 8 (out now), from which "Park Walks" is taken. On the track, Tokimonsta interplays a lumbering beat and an obtuse bassline with a few ethereal vocal samples to make up some sort of punch-drunk alien groove. More and more sounds are heaped onto the bulbous rhythm as the song progresses, giving "Park Walks" the sort of frenzy we're sure very few walks in the park have.
Although Brooklyn duo Games and Scottish beat wizard Hudson Mohawke (pictured above) both dabble in sounds that could be described as retro, or even future-retro, they don't exactly share the same sonic palette. Yet on this remix of "Strawberry Skies," the original of which appears on Games' That People Play EP, the marriage of the two seems perfectly natural. That's largely because HudMo has put his schizophrenic hip-hop sensibilities aside and simply tweaked the original song's '80s radio-pop vibes with some additional synths and fuzz. He's also played a bit with the wondrous vocals of Laurel Halo, but his chops and slices aren't terribly severe. To be honest, the whole thing sounds more like an alternate take than a complete re-imagining. It certainly works though, so we're not complaining. Give it a listen and also peep the new "Strawberry Skies" video, which is posted after the jump. (via FACT) Read more »
On Monday, XLR8R posted a link to download a free compilation from the Friends of Friends label entitled Pop Massacre that featured 13 pop memorables fully re-worked by beat-centric artists like DNTEL, Strangeloop, and Mexicans With Guns. Among re-interpretations of Prince, Mariah Carey, and Abba is San Francisco/L.A. hopper Shlohmo's version of Soulja Boy's "Pretty Boy Swag." The track is a great candidate for exploring new territory—the cavernous, graveyard-deep original is a nice fit for Shlohmo's cacophonous soundscapes. However, unlike his tightly wound version of Khia's "My Neck My Back" from earlier this year, here Shlohmo opts for a wounded vocal sample that pares down Pretty Boy's swaggiest moments to something resembling modesty.
XLR8R Downloads Player