“I’m Not Alright” goes full tilt deep house for @LoudLuxury with a chill vocal by @BryceVine

LOUD LUXURY and BRYCE VINE, “I’m Not Alright”

“I’m Not Alright” has a lot going forward for it to land it onto dance club playlists and keep the worldwide radio audiences happy who found Toronto’s Loud Luxury (Andrew and Joe) through the massive “Body”.  And with a penchant for including unique vocalists like both brando (“Body”) and Anders (“Love No More”), this time the boys partner with the very chill but always fun Bryce Vine.  I caught Bryce’s show last year and he knows how to captivate an audience with his good-natured, self-deprecating humour.  “I’m Not Alright” sometimes comes off as a close cousin of Milky Chance’s “Stolen Dance”, but with a deep house melody that is also reminiscent of Kungs & Cookin on 3 Burners’ “This Girl”.  Bryce’s voice is often set against a quieter acoustic portion of the song before the bass rhythm kicks in.  While “I’m Not Alright” isn’t quite as easy a sell as “Body”, Loud Luxury have another winner that will please their fans and keep the radio airplay prominent.

Weekend Dance Music Roundup Part 1: @CedricGervais vs @weareJustKiddin @GilGlazemusic @Habstrakt @LFrequencies @thisisMokita @Rozallab @ChemBros @Egzodmusic @YoungBombs

Miami Music Week is upon us again, and I’m happy to be arriving Wednesday March 27 and then leaving in the morning of Sunday March 31.  I’ll miss the closing festivities at the various clubs – I’m not going to Ultra – but there will be lots to keep me busy, along with the beach and the sunshine!

As a predecessor to the events, in Part 1 of my Weekend Dance Music Roundup, I’m featuring 10 new dance music releases, in no particular order, some of whom are by performers you may see at MMW.

  • One of the biggest recent highlights for me is Cedric Gervais vs Just Kiddin’s “Good Things” (featuring Kyan) in both its regular and Disco Edit.  “Good Things” has everything going for it – gorgeous pop elements for those who still listen to radio with a bass house drop at the minute mark that shakes things up, as the song progresses into a pop/house anthem.  I’m hoping for big things for this song!

Cedric Gervais performs at Ultra Music Festival on Saturday March 30.

  • Strong in the melodic pop/dance department is US-based, Switzerland-born Gil Glaze with two recent releases.  Both “How We Do” (above) and “Young Forever” (below, featuring vocalist Annabel Turner) make smooth transitions from pop to potential club bangers with memorable celebratory feel good vibes.  Either of these songs could be a big ticket for Gil, who has been known more for remixes and festival appearances than his own originals.
  • I’ve been absolutely loving the most recent records by Nashville’s Mokita, whose songs like the more pop-oriented “London” (#10 on my chart) will find permanent places on your playlists.  “Kiss And Tell” is a more high energy, urgent plea to an absent lover that will provoke big reactions on the dance floor, with some quieter moments to allow for some on-scene romance if it’s in the cards.  “Kiss And Tell” is one beautiful record and I’m glad Armada is digressing from its usual harder core dance flavours to bring this to us.

  • What can one say about the groundbreaking Grammy-winning legends that are The Chemical Brothers?  They had me sold back 23 years ago with the off-centre, clever electronics of “Setting Sun”.  They return with the entertaining “We’ve Got To Try” which prominently samples a 70’s R&B song called “I’ve Got To Find Away” by The Hallelujah Chorus.  Another standout song for big moments at clubs and festivals. Oh and there’s a Daft Punk-inspired video that features a new EDM mascot 😛
  • Rising US producer Habstrakt has a fine new diverse release called “All Night”.  Surprisingly European in flavour, “All Night” has plenty of big bounce and classic house elements in which you can easily get lost.  

Habstrakt plays Ultra Music Festival on Friday March 29, as well as three other events, including Ghastly Presents Ritual on Wednesday March 27 at The Hangar.

  • Newly minted with the Astralwerks label, long time fave remixers from Vancouver, Young Bombs, have released their first original single, the uplifting “Starry Eyes”.  It’s entirely different from anything else out there and will stand out and grab your ears from any direction.  “Starry Eyes” is as much about the engaging female vocal chorus as it is about the swirling electronics that provide the dizzying backdrop.  Put those cell phones and lighters in the air and light up the skies until sundown.  Well done Tristan and Martin!  Check out the humorous lyric video above.

Young Bombs performs at the Ultra Music Festival on Sunday March 31.

  • Still relatively new to the music scene is Miami-based, France-born Egzod (aka Carlos Carvalho Martins, using a variation of the French word ‘exode’, meaning ‘exodus’) shifts gears slightly towards pop with “Better With You”.  Fans of Egzod’s more progressive stylings won’t be disappointed as the producer keeps his synths and mix well to the left, but the uncredited female vocal here is a worthy attraction and the melody is strong.

Egzod plays Centro Wynwood on Tuesday March 26.

  • After having three Billboard dance club play chart #1’s in the 90’s which includes the classic “Everybody’s Free (To Feel Good)”, Zambia-born UK-based singer Rozalla rebooted her career in 2015 with the Top 5 “If You Say It Again” and the equally worthy collaboration with House Of Virus, “The Shadows Of The Moon”.  It all continues with “Turn On The Light”, especially in its zesty Mr. Root Oh So Chic 12″ remix, which could enliven any house music set.  Current dance music continues to embrace its much-loved veterans and when a record is so strong like “Turn On The Light” then it’s worthy of much attention.
  • One of the most popular producer/DJ’s worldwide is Belgium’s Lost Frequencies, aka Felix De Laet.  Arriving just in time to bring the heat to MMW is “Recognise” featuring the positively stellar voice of Flynn.  You’ll be singing the chorus to this one long after the song’s over.  There’s a vibrant, percussive backdrop to “Recognise” that accentuates the tropical vibes along with some delightful acoustic guitar riffing.

Lost Frequencies plays the Ultra Music Festival on Sunday March 31.

“American Dream” is a smoking new instrumental from @SultanShepard – with a backstory

SULTAN + SHEPARD, “American Dream”

“American Dream” marks the return of L.A. based Canadian duo Sultan + Shepard this time through Armada.  It’s an alternately rollicking and sultry instrumental that draws its inspiration, and some samples, from the main theme of the movie “American Beauty”.  It’s a perfect fit for clubs, with quiet, understated moments taking turns with some really fluid and dirty synth work.  Sultan + Shepard have always been known for creative, outside-of-the-box originals and remixes during this decade that have attracted collaborations with the likes of Nadia Ali, Taryn Manning (with a #1 Billboard club chart hit, “Send Me Your Love”), Tiësto, Fedde LeGrand, and Dillon Francis, which have also resulted in nominations for both Grammy Awards (remixing Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out Of Heaven”) and Juno Awards (their collaboration with Nadia, “Almost Home”).  If this is just the start of what Sultan + Shepard are bringing us in 2019, then watch out!

Published in: on February 2, 2019 at 11:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Listen to the potent acoustic collaboration of @GoldFishlive and @MarcosZeeba with “It Was You”

GOLDFISH and ZEEBA, “It Was You” (acoustic)

Though I’m not familiar with either performer, the video of an acoustic alliance (recorded in Santiago, Chile!), “It Was You”, is a welcome introduction to both.  GoldFish is an electronic duo (Dom and David) with South African origins, now situated in San Diego, who are both well-educated, diverse musicians as well as producers.  Zeeba is an American singer, based in Brazil and of Brazilian heritage, who is most noted for some recent successful collaborations, particularly with producer Alok.  So it’s no wonder that Armada, of all labels, has taken a chance to release “It Was You”.  Strip away all of the electronic trappings and you can always see who truly shines.  Zeeba’s convincing vocal supported by the grand piano and saxophone from GoldFish meshes together silkily, and though it’s a short effort at only 2:32 it’s one that you’ll definitely want to hear again and again.

 

Published in: on January 20, 2019 at 6:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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L.A. duo @Sevenn bring it short, sweet ‘n sexy with “Lollipop”

SEVENN, “Lollipop”

US production duo Sevenn – Sean Brauer and Kevin Brauer – have a sugary holiday winner with “Lollipop”.  Taking many finessed cues from 90’s and 00’s classic house, “Lollipop” becomes less of a novelty track and more of a short, sweet ‘n sexy deep house bumper.  The uncredited female vocal gives it some sleek cheese to please, but the song is more about a tight groove that just doesn’t want to let up.  No wonder Armada has jumped on it – be sure listen for “Lollipop” during festival season.

sevenn

Published in: on December 22, 2018 at 11:53 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Another Canadian to watch: @Fambamusic nails classic house with a twist with “Right Here Right Now”

FAMBA, “Right Here Right Now” (extended version)

The folks at Armada have brought us some great new talent this year, and one is under my own Canadian doorstep, although in Halifax.  Famba’s extended version of “Right Here Right Now” is a real treat that club DJ’s should immediately embrace.  It’s definitely rooted in 90’s and early 2000’s house music but if any influence might be prominent it’s Armand Van Helden.  The groove in “Right Here” kicks in early but it’s got these cool spoken word passages that will really draw people in.  And not only this, but the extended version sustains its 7 minute + length, allowing DJ’s to watch the fun that unfolds in front of them.  Famba’s “Right Here Right Now” is one of those finds you’ll want to put on repeat as hear more from what the young producer/DJ has coming up.  Give a solid listen at the link above.

Published in: on October 10, 2016 at 7:43 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Crunchy European groove: “Sirius” by @GianniKosta featuring #Belle

GIANNI KOSTA featuring BELLE, “Sirius”

Paris-based producer Gianni Kosta has a winner with “Sirius” featuring vocalist Belle through Armada’s The Bearded Man imprint.  Gianni’s already caught attention working with Lost Frequencies and Demi Lovato’s “Confident”.  But “Sirius” has definitely got a crunch European groove down pat which will standout in a club mix.   Belle’s laid back and warm vocal supports the story of a relationship that nearly falls apart but once you’re ‘sirius’ about it it will all be fine.  Marry that with images of the warm southern France beaches and the colour of the Mediterranean and “Sirius” goes down easy.  Check it out at the link above.

Published in: on August 21, 2016 at 3:50 pm  Leave a Comment  
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