#BILLCSTop30 #514 – July 24/17

My annual vacation (with upcoming trip to NYC) begins with a busy chart that has no less than SIX debuts to feast your new music ears on ūüôā

The Top 10

  • It’s going to be hard to say what will happen in two weeks in terms of what will be #1, so we’ll just have to wait and get there. ¬†In the meantime “Attention” by Charlie Puth (above) anchors the top spot, while “Out Of My Head” (below) by L.A. indie singer/songwriter Axel Mansoor follows up his #1 “Wasting My Love” (now #14) with a second appearance at #2.

  • The fastest riser on the chart, with little surprise, is “New York Pretty” by Brooklyn resident Bright Light Bright Light, his most personal and engaging song in a long time, from his new EP Tales Of The City. ¬†It’s a fitting club-worthy soundtrack for my upcoming time in NYC, and soars 16 to 3. ¬†Like his biggest Billboard club hit to date, “All In The Name”, “New York Pretty” has an NYC/Broadway vibe about it, helping make it an individual celebration about being surrounded by an amazing city.
  • There are new peaks for “Silent Games” by Lars Beck & Henri Purnell featuring Zekt (above), and “D U S T” by Bobby Nourmand (below), which climb to #4 and #5 respectively.
  • Also new to the Top 10 is Cosmos & Creature with “Bad Drug” and its anthemic hook taking it 11-8.
  • And the last new Top 10 entry is the sax-filled Saxena remix of “Darlin'” by Welcome To The Hotel featuring vocalist Brandon Serafino. ¬†Producer duo Saxena have renamed themselves Revelries, so more to come under the new moniker! ¬†“Darlin'” climbs 12-10.

Movin’ On Up

  • Top 10 bound is the insanely catchy club banger “Astronauts” by Danish duo Boye & Sigvardt collaborating with fellow Denmark denizen Uhre on vocals, and Scottish producer MAGN√úS. ¬†That’s quite a collective and it all meshes into something quite unique and worthy of your attention! ¬†It moves up 18-13.

  • UK singer Sean Smith, ex of Same Difference, has a real grower with “Magic”, finding its way on to a variety of playlists. ¬†In its Andy Sikorski remix, the song rises 20-15 for enduring UK dance label Energise.
  • I’ll be very interested to see where the entertainment biz will take singer/actor Reeve Carney after his tour supporting his album Youth Is Wasted. ¬†The fine vocalist climbs 19-16 with the bluesy R&B tones of “Truth”. ¬†Always good to watch him on big or small screen too!

  • While long-lasting “I Wonder” departs the chart, The Him are back in the Top 20 with their latest “Secrets”, featuring an engaging and soulful vocal by L.A.’s Cub Rayan, and it jumps 23-18.

  • Toronto’s Dan Talevski continues to tease us on social media about his upcoming video for the delightfully naughty “Birthday Suit”, which climbs 25-19.

SIX Debuts

A couple of longer lasting songs from the Spring have lingered enough to make their chart debuts among a six-pack!

  • The lyrics of L.A.’s CVBZ do get under your skin, and the pumped up remix of “Be Like You” by Sean Turk helps get it to a #20 debut. ¬†It’s from the three-song RMXZ EP. ¬†CVBZ will appear in concert at the Billboard Hot 100 festival in August! Check out the video below as well.

  • Progressive EDM/rock duo Lemaitre hail from Norway but are currently based in L.A. ¬†Their new album Chapter One contains the dubstep/trap-influenced single “Higher”, featuring a highly complimentary vocal by EDM mainstay Maty Noyes. ¬†It’s Lemaitre’s chart debut at #22.
  • Following up “Lethal” (which peaked at #6) from their EP Limited is Toronto quartet Blajk, back on the chart with the equally catchy “Gunshot” at #24.
  • One of the best mostly-instrumental albums I’ve heard in a long time is Imprint by Austin producer/guitarist Cloudchord. ¬†It’s a flashy mix of EDM, rock and jazz and from it is “Lacuna”, featuring SunSquabi, which arrives at #25. ¬†Cloudchord previously appeared on the chart with his unofficial remix of Jamie xx’s “Loud Places” (which reached #15), which unfortunately is no longer available.
  • “Suitcase” marks the 10th appearance on my chart by Matthew Koma, as a lead or featured vocalist, but his first since his collaboration with The Knocks on 2015’s “I Wish (My Taylor Swift)” (#3) – and I understand both artists are working on another song together ūüôā ¬†“Suitcase” is also a song you may have heard years ago – there is a live clip online of Matthew performing it for his former label. ¬†It bows at #26.

  • Following two consecutive Top 5 songs here – “Be My Love” (#5) and “WTFYWF” (#3) – is powerhouse dance duo, producer Mahalo and singer Cat Lewis, with the gorgeous house track “Heaven”, landing at #27.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here, and be sure to click on the photos to hear all of the songs.

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Planet Radio Canada is on hiatus and will return¬†http://www.planetradio.ca¬†ūüôā

High quality musicianship, ear-pleasing melodies all showcase @Cloudchord’s excellent new album “Imprint”

CLOUDCHORD, Imprint

Austin-based Cloudchord (aka Derek VanScoten) has released his first album under that moniker called¬†“Imprint”, and it will definitely leave its mark on you, warranting multiple listens to beautifully layered songs full of striking and bright high end that will leave you in a great mood afterwards. ¬†And it’s more likely to make you want to dance than not!

I’ve mentioned it before, but Cloudchord isn’t just an EDM producer/remixer, he’s a studied musician, and his diverse guitar work kicks Imprint up many notches. ¬†The use of other live instruments like trumpet as well as top notch, complex synth melodies should call attention to other producers and arrangers. ¬†The album is mostly instrumental, and seems to take a lot of cues from progressive ambient musicians like Brian Eno and Jean-Michel Jarre, with a lot of heavy jazz influence too from people like Pat Metheny (specifically his 80’s works). ¬†But there are those slamming beats too, which fall out of deep house, tropical and future bass sub-genres, which should totally win over club DJ’s.

The release of Imprint was preceded by two of its songs, the sunny “Golden XO” (which I wrote about a while back) and “Light U”, with its perky rhythm and vocal effects. ¬†The other songs that stand out to me are the imaginative “Aviator”, with all of its lovely melodic shifts – it¬†could be made into a mini-movie in itself – the playful and complex¬†“Lacuna”, “Sidewalk Spirits” (notable guitar work here), “Lavender Mimosas”, and “Birdbath and Beyond” (definitely loving some of the humour in the titles). ¬†

If you enjoy your EDM drenched in variety within that genre, along with countless other influences, then Cloudchord’s Imprint is meant for you for a thorough listen. ¬†Check it out at your favourite digital store using the link above.

Published in: on April 12, 2017 at 10:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Heartbeat” by @Autografmusic gets a post-disco workout by @Cloudchord and @FrancisPreve

AUTOGRAF, “Heartbeat” (Cloudchord x Francis Preve remix) (free DL)

You never quite know what to expect when a new Cloudchord remix arrives, and this time he’s paired up with fellow Austin denizen Francis Preve, the noted wizard of synths and sounds as well as remixer of songs by Dragonette and Sander Kleinenberg, for a retooling of “Heartbeat” by Chicago trio Autograf. ¬†In the best of worlds, all sub-sub-genres of dance music fuse and merge to become new sounds, and Cloudchord and Francis take us on a time trip where disco was evolving and a new wave of punk-inspired rock music and dance music was gelling. ¬†Thus the remix of “Heartbeat” has numerous classic disco flourishes with late 70’s, early 80’s progressive, electronic synth sounds, which when combined with today’s technology and retro early 2000 house rhythms, vocals, and melodies doesn’t quite sound like anything else out there. ¬†This remix of “Heartbeat” will definitely give club DJ’s pause for thought – how to make it stand out in a set with its engaging six minute length as it rightly should. ¬†You can check out all the fuss I’m trying to say in so many words by clicking on the link above and downloading it for free ūüôā

Published in: on February 2, 2017 at 11:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Chilled out romanticism: New Songs by @TheOddsin x @BronzeWhale “Best” and @Cloudchord (featuring Furious) “Forever For Now”

THE ODDS x BRONZE WHALE, “Best” (free DL)

CLOUDCHORD featuring FURIOUS, “Forever For Now”

I don’t usually dedicate posts to two songs or more as I did in the long past, but these two are both originals out of Austin, and so similar yet so different that you can dare to compare and enjoy each one!

New singer The Odds pairs up with producers/remixers Bronze Whale for “Best” from their EP Million. ¬†The Odds has one of these deep down soulful, restrained voices that could break loose and bring down the house. ¬†For the romantic “Best”, it’s more of the former as Bronze Whale unleashes some spectacularly laid out beats and rhythm so that it’s not too much of a chilled out affair. ¬†“Best” is cool and collected and then dashing and entertaining as it needs to be. ¬†It will definitely get under your skin and stay there! ¬†It’s also a free download ūüôā

Producer/remixer Cloudchord has one of his best releases of the year with “Forever For Now”, his most laid back song to date, which also features a soulful newcomer named Furious as the vocalist. ¬†“Forever For Now” strikes you with the classic romantic simplicity of the lyrics, with a rich vocal by Furious that shows a lot of promise. ¬†Kudos to Cloudchord for not letting this one stay too mellow, which might not allow the lyrics to sink in. ¬†“Forever For Now” is perfect for lights down low and a slow dance or two, and to me has as much pop potential as it would for clubs.

Be sure to give both of these songs some of your time as two of the best toned-down pop/EDM songs for Autumn at the links above.

Austin’s @Cloudchord is back with lush original instrumental “Golden XO”

CLOUDCHORD, “Golden XO” (free DL)

Cloudchord has dazzled tastemakers thus far in 2016 with a cornucopia of remixes of songs by the likes of Jamie xx and Ember Island, which I’ve written about, as well as by Of Monsters And Men, Bon Iver, and Matoma to name but a few. ¬†The Austin producer/DJ is also a wicked guitarist, as we’ve already tasted in his remix of Ember Island’s “Need You”, and now his original instrumental “Golden XO” makes it the centre of attention amid a laid back, sexy mix for those special times (he refers to it as ‘pajama house’). ¬†It’s slick and atmospheric and shouldn’t be overlooked because it’s an instrumental, only a taste of what’s still to come. ¬†Download it for free at the above link.

Published in: on September 22, 2016 at 10:09 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Austin producer/DJ @Cloudchord puts the dance/funk into “Need You” by @EmberIsland_

EMBER ISLAND, “Need You” (Cloudchord remix)

Swedish trio Ember Island, who recently visited the U.S. for SXSW among other venues, have a beautiful could-be-hit with “Need You”. ¬†But Cloudchord’s funky dance remix could put it on the club map with ease. ¬†Following up his engaging remix of Jamie xx’s “Loud Places” (currently on my personal chart), “Need You” is heavily influenced by the classic sounds of yesteryear R&B and disco which when mixed up with today’s flavours results in progressive nu-disco that will stand out in a club mix. ¬†What I dig most about this one is the slick and crunchy guitar work which can hold its own against and be mixed with records by Nile Rodgers/Chic, Scissor Sisters, and more. ¬†Don’t pass up this remix of “Need You”, be sure to download it for free using the Soundcloud link above.

Published in: on March 26, 2016 at 1:29 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #478 – March 7, 2016

A scorching new #1 and 4 debuts highlight edition my 478th bi-weekly chart since 1998 ūüôā

The Top 10

  • MAX Schneider’s “Wrong” hangs in long enough to score an appearance at the top ūüôā ¬†I couldn’t let all of those Prince-ly high notes get away just yet! ¬†This is because MAX has already released a video for a song from his upcoming album Hell’s Kitchen Angel, out on April 8. ¬†Check out “Holla” below.

  • Congratulations to The Knocks for their excellent long-awaited album 55, which was released this past Friday. ¬†The Wyclef Jean-led “Kiss The Sky” climbs 4-2 and undoubtedly more songs from 55 will prevail on this chart ūüôā

  • Troye Sivan is a vivid force on this chart with three showings: ¬†“Talk Me Down”¬†(below)¬†glides 7-5, while “Wild” climbs 9-6 and “Fools” rises 17-13. ¬†All songs are from his continually impressive Blue Neighbourhood album. ¬†“Youth” is beckoning from outside of the Top 30 too.

  • While Simon Curtis’ redux of “8bit Heart” slips to #4, the Super 8bit Heart version of “Super Psycho Love” continues to climb 10-7 as Simon’s “Boy Robot” novel gets an earlier October release!

  • Fun on the dance floor continues as Craig David & Big Narstie arrive at #9 with “When The Bassline Drops”. ¬†It’s Craig’s first Top Tenner here since “7 Days” in 2002.

  • The fastest riser on the chart has its designs on #1 – soon! ¬†Canadians DVBBS and Dante Leon should be all over dance club charts – and maybe even pop charts too – with the irresistible “Angel”, which soars 23-10.

Movin’ On Up

  • The Voice Season 10 has started up again with some interesting contestants, including Nick Hagelin, who I’ve written about many times and will be writing about soon again. ¬†Clinton Washington gave an excellent showing two seasons ago and has produced some beautiful songs lately. ¬†Despite the emphasis on my chart towards dance music, his gorgeous ballad “Frozen” rises 14-11.

  • The rest of the last chart’s debuts all break into the Top 20. ¬†The joyous and anthemic Cloudchord remix of Jamie xx & Romy’s “Loud Places” bounds 24-17, and right behind it is the Norwegian EDM grace of “Faded” by Alan Walker (featuring the gorgeous voice of Iselim Solheim) up 25-18 (both above), and rising 27-20 is the both truthful and amusing “u suck” by Minnesota’s Call Me Karizma (below), featuring a cool interpolation of “Why Don’t You Do Right” as recorded by Bev Lee Harling.

Premiering

  • It takes a lot for me to enjoy a cover version as much as or even maybe more than the original. ¬†I love the way that Jonas Blue and Dakota have made Tracy Chapman’s ¬†huge 1988 hit “Fast Car” into this introspective¬†song for a highway drive along a beach coast. ¬†And of course you can dance to it too, so I’m looking forward to official remixes! ¬†This Top 5 UK hit should do the same on North American shores. ¬†I particularly enjoy covers when they don’t take anything away from the original. ¬†This one expands on that and runs with it ūüôā ¬†“Fast Car” arrives at #23.
  • Another song for warm, late nights and dancing on the beach is “Beat The Sunrise” by SNBRN featuring vocalist Andrew Watt, as remixed by Dutch producer/DJ Steve Void. ¬†It’s all warm and good natured for middle-of-the-night grooving and bows at #24.
  • Sweden’s Hellberg is on a breakthrough with the emotional EDM of “Synchronize” featuring a fine vocal by American singer Aaron Richards. ¬†This is just a taste of great things to come from this talented producer/DJ and debuts at #25.

  • Miguel’s Wildheart naughtiness has caught up with me and I have completely given in. ¬†And it makes me ask, almost belatedly, why “Waves” isn’t all over everywhere yet? ¬†It could still happen with new remixes by the likes of Tame Impala and one featuring Travis $cott. ¬†But I like the sexy original best and it jumps onto the chart at #26. ¬†It’s Miguel’s first appearance here since “Adorn” went to #1 in 2013 in his UK duet version with Jessie Ware.

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed¬†web edition of my chart.¬†Go on, have a look and listen/watch ūüôā

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! ¬†Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify ūüôā¬†BILLCS Top 30 Songs

You can now hear me online on http://www.planetradio.ca every Tuesday at 9:00 pm EST counting down a Toronto Top 10 chart from yesteryear, and then again every Thursday in a rebroadcast at 7:00 a.m. EST on WROCK http://www.wlor.net!

 

#BILLCSTop30 #477 – February 22, 2016

I’m humbled by the amount of new visitors I’ve had recently to this blog and Twitter. ¬†The BILLCS Top 30 is my personal chart of favourites which started out online in 1998 as the monthly Tuned-On! Top 10 and quickly¬†grew into a bi-weekly Top 30 on a web page hosted by Geocities (remember them?). ¬†Its focus over the years has shifted depending on what styles of music I’ve been drawn to the most. ¬†It largely focuses on singles but album tracks are included. ¬†Songs can only appear on the chart for 10 appearances (20 weeks) which keeps the new songs flowing. ¬†In 2003, music was becoming much more globally in sync and I allowed songs to appear on the chart providing they were released … somewhere. ¬†In 2009, a free download hit #1 for the first time. ¬†A song must be ‘released’ (for pay or for free) in order to qualify to appear on the chart – a You Tube or Soundcloud post that is not consumable does not qualify. ¬†Official remixes may chart instead of the original if that’s the version I prefer.

With that update provided, on to the new chart ūüôā

simoncurtis_boyrobot

The Top 10

 

 

 

  • The ongoing revival of Simon Curtis “8bit Heart” continues to grow as the cover to his upcoming book “Boy Robot” (cover above) was premiered by Just Jared Jr. ¬†The book would not be forthcoming without Simon’s original 2010 mixtape (still available for free at http://www.simon-curtis.com) which has recently been re-recorded as Super 8bit Heart and now available everywhere for purchase. ¬†“8bit Heart” is still so much of a personal favourite, and continues at #1 for a second appearance in its delightful redux version. ¬†The new version of “Super Psycho Love” joins “8bit Heart” in the Top 10, rising 16-10.
  • MAX (Schneider) holds at #2 with “Wrong”. ¬†Do check out the infectious remix recently unleashed online by RyanEXOE featuring Taylor Bennett, above.

  • Before my next chart, the album 55 by The Knocks will finally be on release and should be the soundtrack to the first part of 2016, given that I heard most of the songs at their Toronto concert in January. ¬†“Kiss The Sky”, featuring a fantastic vocal by Wyclef Jean, climbs 7-4 and is definitely eyeing #1.

  • Coincidentally, The Knocks are back-to-back with their own label signees, Sofi Tukker. ¬†The NYC duo holds steady at #5 with the irresistible “Drinkee”. ¬†Yeah it’s all in Portuguese, but no matter!

  • This chart marks the mini-invasion of the Top 10 by songs by the latest boy wunderkind, Troye Sivan. ¬†The glorious “Talk Me Down” advances 12-7 while the heart-wringer “Wild” climbs 14-9 (both above). ¬†And Troye’s “Fools”¬†(below, rounding out the Blue Neighbourhood trilogy of videos)¬†is the fastest riser, movin’ on up a few notches below 26-17. ¬†This only means one thing: If you haven’t heard Troye’s Blue Neighbourhood, you are missing out. ¬†Troye is playing a sold out show at the Danforth Music Hall in Toronto next week.

More Songs Movin’ On Up

  • Brandyn Burnette’s hip hop flavoured “Down” from his Made Of Dreams EP rises 15-12. ¬†He and his gal Molly Moore (sitting pretty at #8 with “Blood. Sweat. Tears.”) have joined forces as Cosmos & Creature and will appear as the featured voices in an upcoming song by dance music performer Vicetone called “Brightside”! ¬†Watch for it!

  • Elephante’s original “Age Of Innocence” (featuring Trouze and Damon Sharpe) is one pumped up slice of emotional EDM with a melody that stays with you for days. ¬†It moves up 18-15.

  • Like “Hello”, it looks like Adele’s “When We Were Young” is about to dominate the dance charts in its remixed version. ¬†But the still stunning original from the 25 album climbs 21-16.

  • Calvo’s “Vicious Girl” continues to be embraced by DJs throughout the world thanks to a memorable keyboard melody and an odd¬†vocal that works quite well. ¬†It jumps 27-20 and is well on its way. ¬†It’s also a co-write by the talented Daniel Volpe (who as a performer is none other than Zorro Blakk).

Debuts

  • It may be their best song yet. ¬†Canadian bros DVBBS feature a Torontonian singer Dante Leon on “Angel”, which bows at #23. ¬†DVBBS have previously charted with MOTi with “This Is Dirty” (#9) and with Sander van Doorn and Martin Garrix on “Gold Skies” (#3).
  • A bit of summer is upon us courtesy of the driving beat of the Cloudchord remix of “Loud Places”, an alternative hit last year for Jamie xx featuring Romy, from Jamie’s Grammy-nominated album In Colour. ¬†This tropical anthemic remix stands on its own and arrives at #24.

  • Sweden will simply have to share its current #1 with us. ¬†That song is “Faded” by Norwegian producer/DJ Alan Walker, which originally started as an instrumental called “Fade”. ¬†It premieres at #25.
  • And at #27 is “u suck” by Minnesota rapper/producer Call Me Karizma (aka Morgan Parriott). ¬†Its clever featured chorus from the song “Why Don’t You Do Right” is sung by UK vocalist Bev Lee Harling. ¬†“u suck” is a wonderful slice of what sounds like ‘new era rap’.

Listen to the songs or watch the videos using the links on the pictures on the pretty and detailed¬†web edition of my chart.¬†Go on, have a look and listen/watch ūüôā

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! ¬†Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify ūüôā¬†BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Although it will not air this week, you can usually hear me online on http://www.planetradio.ca every Monday at 9:00 pm EST counting down a Toronto Top 10 chart from yesteryear, and then again every Thursday in a rebroadcast at 7:00 a.m. EST on WROCK http://www.wlor.net!

 

@Jamie___xx’s “Loud Places” as remixed by @Cloudchord becomes a tropical deep house anthem

JAMIE xx featuring ROMY, “Loud Places” (Cloudchord remix)

It’s almost a year old and did very well in alt.pop and EDM circles last summer, but Jamie xx’s “Loud Places” gets a rollicking reboot courtesy of Austin TX producer/DJ/guitarist Cloudchord (aka Derek Van Scoten). ¬†It’s transformed into a driving disco tropical house track full of additional instrumentation which helps stand it apart from other remixes. ¬†Vocals by Romy so very much suit this reworked setting. ¬†In a dance club, the first two minutes of “Loud Places” will create a perfect lead out of a soft set and into a set of club bangers. ¬†It may go on a little long at 5 minutes plus, but don’t be surprised if Cloudchord’s remix of “Loud Places” sneaks up on you when you’re clubbing or listening online to dance music radio. ¬†

Published in: on February 6, 2016 at 10:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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