Saturday, July 17, 2010

Nasty hobbitses

It's a spontaneous 320 day at X-fated!

I was doing the usual cursory check of MySpace pages the other day, to see if anyone interesting would grace Montreal with their presence before the end of summer, and while checking Egyptrixx's page, I saw that he produced a remix about a month ago for a new project called The Aikiu, which features, among others, Pilooski. He did a fantastic mix for XLR8R a little while ago, and while he isn't the only man behind the Aikiu curtain, he's the only one I know anything about. 'Trixx seems to be finally settling on a loose aesthetic for his tracks, and this remix of "Just Can't Sleep" is a strong one, similar in feel to his massive remix of Brodinski's "Arnold Classics". Loopy synths and heavy sub-bass, while still maintaining a strict house 4-to-the-floor beat make it a quirky and unique but very accessible tune, which isn't an easy thing to pull off. Here it is, in juicy 320. The rest of the EP is quite solid as well, and is available on Juno.

More recently, the sometimes-impressive High Rankin has released a new EP featuring purely original tracks. The EP (Cut You Down) is quite varied, featuring house beats, some dnb, and plenty of dub and garage sounds, which makes it his most interesting release yet (especially after the clones "Occupation: Pimp and Gambler" and "No Money for Guns"). My favourite track is by far "They Are Watching". It has a sparse and highly distorted beat, lots of 8-bit sounds, and a very, very creepy backing melody and intro. Peak hour track for sure, and a sleeper because the intro is so smooth and eerie. I highly recommend picking up the EP, but for now here's "They Are Watching", also in 320.

Finally, remember Project Bassline (a.k.a. the Wideboys)? Their high-speed, beefy bass track "Drop the Pressure" was an enormous hit in 2008, and the Jack Beats remix was possibly one of the biggest club tunes of 2009 (and still gets played, even by the men themselves, as in their Essential Mix). Well, they just released a new EP titled the Twelfth Step. Similar in creative vision to High Rankin's release, it features mostly dubstep and dnb sounds, and the title track is absolutely fantastic. Normally I don't go in much for the huge drop/stupid bass genre of dubstep, but this is executed perfectly. Here, I give you a 320 of the remix by tropical garage bway Melé, who recently released an excellent EP of his own on Mixpak Records.


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Lengthy Gap

Been away on official sightseeing business, so excuse the lack of posts for the previous three weeks. Internet is a rarely-caught beast in Romania, so I didn't get much chance to check my e-mail, let alone blog about music. Unfortunately my iPod has decided to stop working with iScrobbler as well, so all the music I listened to while there will now go un-counted by, which is a shame.

Nonetheless! Let us get down to business.

1. New Night Slugs release (again!). This time an EP packed with four new tracks by none other than L-Vis 1990, though to my chagrin, none of them were "The Bird". The EP goes in a bit for the Lil Silva sound; steady yet syncopated rhythms with raw-sounding synths; it's hard to describe, but the sound is "simpler" than usual night slugs fare, seeming more like home production for some reason. Not my favourite of their releases (especially the cheesy voiced-over track "Do You Remember"), but definitely not weak by any means. I recommend buying it at Beatport.

2. Mount Kimbie have released their debut album, and I just finished listening to the whole thing. Very, very reminiscent of Zomby and Burial production styles, especially Zomby's Digital Flora/Digital Fauna single from a while back. They also reminded me somewhat of King Midas Sound on a few of the tracks, throwing percussion ont he back burner and instead focussing on sample-based melodies and sound effects. Despite these obvious similarities, the album was very good, and I hope to hear more originals from these guys soon. Favourite track was definitely "Carbonated".

3. Manare's Speakeasy EP knocked my socks off when I heard it. The originals "Pirog" and "Speakeasy" are fantastic, in particular the latter. The old-timey samples mixed with consummate UK funky sounds makes for a danceable track that never gets boring. The remixes were also great, with talents like GIRL UNIT, Dubbel Dutch, Lorcan Mak, and Renaissance Man doing the honours. The Renaissance Man one was by far my favourite; they took the original track in a totally different direction, and as expected, made it very weird. Here it is in 160.

4. SBTRKT and Sampha finally got a digital release of their funky new garage stomper "Break Off". One thing I'm noticing is that SBTRKT seems to like inserting an extra bar at the end of his intros: listen to his remix of "Art & Cash" by Modeselektor. There too, the synth-only chord progression he uses before the beat comes in is nine bars, not eight, due to elongating the final chord one bar extra. It's anomalies like this that make mixing out of his tracks a nightmare unless you are very familiar with the song. Daps for that.

5. Sinden's new label Grizzly has its third release out. Wafa's Ewid Disco EP is decidedly different in tone than the last two releases, following a more 8-bit-vaguely-glitch-house aesthetic. The tracks are layered in digital distortion effects, and feature squeaking synths and arpeggiated basslines reminiscent of older Bloody Beetroots tracks, if you're on mushrooms. My favourite of the originals was "Man Down", a relentless, 135-bpm track that would seem appropriate for clubbers on speed. The weirdest track, though, was Drop the Lime's remix of the title track, Ewid Disco. I'm never that impressed with DTL's original productions (Sex Sax is an abomination, that was only just saved by the remix by Zombies for Money), but this is too weird not to like. Throwing the regular song structure out the window, DTL has crafted a track that sounds to me like making out with a robotic dinosaur. Here it is.

6. Finally, I got my hands on a full-length, unmixed version of the ILS track I posted a while ago, from James Lavelle's Barcelona mix for Global Underground. Here it is in sparkly, shiny 320 (I recently learned that PMT was an alias used by the Crystal Method for this and several other remixes). Enjoy!

Bonus: track I've heard in a few mixes over the past month, that just got released a few days ago. Debut EP Lengthy Riddim by Mista Men (holy shit, look at all the tracks they haven't released yet) features a remix by Hackman, definitely check it out.


My Name is Sex Bassoon

I've been noticing a trend with orchestral instruments. First, the trumpets on Manare's Speakeasy. Then, after some questionable use of bag pipes, there's some prominent woodwinds after the drop in Homework's Fissa Tune. Kinda works? Speaking of Romania (see Nick's post), some dude commented on Discobelle that Fissa Tune is a poor man's ripoff of this romanian gypsy track. Had a laugh over that video. There's some nice strings in the intro to Trolley Snatcha - Slowdown. We already covered Drop the Lime's sax-centric track Sex Sax but now LA Riots has a teaser for their new track "Control Your Tuba" on a Fools Gold mixtape.

While waiting for someone to drop a "Sex Bassoon" track for my upcoming "Early Romantic Orchestra" Electro mix, I randomly discovered the Skrillex remix on the Lady Gaga - Alejandro Remixes CD. Pretty decent so I looked into the Skrillex EP which was free but seems to be dead now so I decided to re-up it so you can download it again. That shit's pretty heavy. Listen to Mustard Pimp shamelessly mix three Skrillex tracks back to back on this new Winnipeg mix.

If that wasn't heavy enough, try A1 Bassline's "Close To Me" on the Breathless EP. Eeek! Maaaybe I'd play it during a real-life boss battle in the Congo. Instead, here's the A side,

That's it for now, except I'm wondering... why did Afrojack make a bizarro cover of "Pon De Floor"?

Be Prepared

Swedish duo, Marcus Price and Carli, dropped their first album (Mat Bira Kvinnor Weed) in recent months and I must admit that I had no idea who they were or what to expect. I was blown away by the originals and the remixes. The EP boasts two original tracks followed by three remixes of each. The originals are good enough on their own but the remixes make the EP that much better. With remixes by Kingdom, Bok Bok and Dubbel Dutch, I wasn't sure which I thought was best. I've settled on the Dubbel Dutch remix of Mat Bira Kvinnor Weed. It keeps the integrity of the original but slightly raises the tempo and beefs up the bass. If you like this one, I highly suggest you buy the album.

Marcus Price & Carli - Mat, Bira, Kvinnor, Weed (Dubbel Dutch Remix) [160]

On the topic of Dubbel Dutch, I recommend getting your grubby paws on their Throwback EP (released around the same time as the aforementioned). Funky beats with some subterranean bass is sure to get you going. Diggin' everything this guy is doing right now. Here's the title track from the EP.

Dubbel Dutch - Throwback [160]

I recently discovered MiMOSA on a wild mediafire hunt one day. If you get a chance, you should listen to his Flux For Life EP. There's some hard shit up in here. The following track isn't off of that EP but it's still really good. the bass synths are a lot smoother in this one than in most of the dubstep in the market now. Feelin' it.

Mochipet - Godzilla New Year (Mimosa Remix)

I'll cap things off by leaving you with something to wet your eardrums and maybe your pants. This track has a good mix between Excision's transformer bass and DZ's dirty bass. This song sounds like shit but not in a bad way. When I first heard this, I couldn't help but think of how wet the bass was. Be right back, gotta wipe...

Excision & DZ - Round 2