Dutch producer @MarcBenjamins has slick, anthemic pop in “Out Of Touch”

MARC BENJAMIN, “Out Of Touch”

Dutch producer is a household name in his home country and well known in south east Asia too, where he’s performed at several festivals.  Over the last six years, he’s worked with the best of the dance music biz from Zedd to Laidback Luke to Nicky Romero to Afrojack, and recorded with almost every major indie dance label.  This time Tipsy Records has his latest, more pop-inflected release, “Out Of Touch”.  Its slick sound and anthemic hook is matched by an on-point uncredited male vocal, which all make “Out Of Touch” stand out in a set of tunes.  I think remixes could up the ante for “Out Of Touch” but as is Marc Benjamin has a far above average pop/dance release which should continue to get attention from those friends in high places!

Published in: on February 2, 2019 at 11:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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UK producer @AntonPowers and Dutch duo @RedondoNL concoct a fresh retro blast with “Make Your Move”

ANTON POWERS & REDONDO, “Make Your Move”

I suppose a revival was due and fortunately UK producer Anton Powers and Dutch duo Redondo make it all fresh again with “Make Your Move. Anton of course is no stranger to the charts, with the Top 5 UK hit “Alone No More” with Philip George and famed A&R guy for 3 Beat Productions (think ‘This Girl” by Kungs & Cookin on 3 Burners).  You also heard Redondo paired recently with Alyx Ander for “Casually”.  Think way back to 2004 when Junior Jack’s “Stupidisco” created a worldwide smash around the chorus of one of The Pointer Sisters’ best 80’s songs “Dare Me”.  This time, take some added lyrics, a winning set of vocals, and brisk (and not campy Junior Jack) production and you have “Make Your Move”.  It’s a fun throwback and should have no problem winning over dance club goers anywhere.

German duo @weareSteamPhunk’s “Hometown” featuring @CarrieLanemusic gets a spirited remix by @Uniryde

STEAM PHUNK and CARRIE LANE, “Hometown” (Uniryde remix)

“Hometown” by Germany’s Steam Phunk featuring American singer Carrie Lane was released about a year ago as a mid-tempo dance track that recalls songs like “Closer” by The Chainsmokers.  This spirited remix by new producer Uniryde could definitely reignite interest in the song.  The remix captures the poignancy and reflective appeal of the original, but aims to make you bounce along to a more carefree, fast paced rhythm track.  “Hometown” will definitely grab your ears and your feet, so be sure to check it out at the link above.

 

Some fresh lyrical pop/dance from new producer @atSmilemusic with “Good About Us” featuring singer Philip Strand

SMILE and PHILIP STRAND, “Good About Us”

I don’t know anything about new producer Smile or singer Philip Strand who’ve created the single “Good About Us” but it’s a solid, fresh pop/dance release with a lot of sparkle that easily passes the blind taste test!  Philip has an earthy gravel to his voice which gives a genuine sound to “Good About Us”, while the synths pop and glisten and win you over.  Ever seeking top quality releases, Tipsy Records is passionately behind this one, and a fine, positive song like this will win us over every time.  There’s loads of pop potential here so don’t miss it.

Published in: on January 27, 2019 at 11:51 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #553 – January 21/19

In this new chart, there’s somewhat more movement and four debuts, but in the coming weeks you’ll be seeing the chart shed many of its favourites from late 2018.

Nonetheless, this time around you’ll still find A-Trak and Todd Terry up top with “DJ’s Gotta Dance More” for a 3rd appearance (6 weeks) at #1, with former #1 “Loyal” by Odesza hanging tight right behind.  But that’s where things start to change up.

Mahalo and Le:Blanc’s perky bop “In My Arms” becomes Mahalo’s 4th Top 5 placing song up 8-3 on this chart,  Illenium holds on to #4, albeit with a different song this time, with “God Damnit” in a pairing with Call Me Karizma climbs 9-4, as “Crawl Outta Love” slips down to #18.

The only artist from Luxembourg to ever grace this chart is producer White Chocolate, and his contemporary take on disco, “Mister Love”, moves 14-8.  Right behind is the effervescent pop/dance of “Play” by Jax Jones and Years & Years, climbing 15-9.  

The fastest riser on the chart is the fantastic new song by Steve Void featuring Andy Marsh called “Closure”, which soars 19-10. 

 

Keep your eyes on these relative newcomers in the next month or so.  NYC-based singer/songwriter Ryan Gibeau has the enlightening “Flying Away” moving up 22-16, while The Him’s anthemic “Look At Us Now” looks like another winner rising 23-17.  “Bite My Tongue” by Australia’s Sam Bluer (27-19) has a unique charm, while Stephen Puth’s “Sexual Vibe” (28-21) knows exactly what it wants.  Molly Moore’s great vocal helps define the urgency of “Be Here Now”, moving up 25-22.

As Revelries’ “Naked” departs the chart, it’s immediately replaced by what is likely the Netherlands-based Emirati lads’ best of the most recent trio of releases to date.  In collaboration with Sam Smyers and featuring a commanding vocal by Oktavian, “Don’t Think Twice” has the highest debut on the chart at #20.

It’s everywhere and especially in the UK where it’s been #1 for almost a month – soon to be replaced by Ariana Grande methinks – it’s American singer Ava Max at #25 with “Sweet But Psycho”.  Right behind it is a gentle love song for the colder months that could be a pop breakthrough for R3HAB with “All Into Nothing” at #26 in partnership with Nashville singer Mokita. 

And last but hardly least at #30 is “Paradise” by Parralox featuring singer Marcella Detroit.  It’s the flashy house mix by Eric Kupper that reinvents the song to make it fresh.  “Paradise”.  It’s the fourth entry for Australia’s Parralox (aka John von Ahlen and friends), whose previous three songs all reached the Top 10, particularly 2015’s “Aeronaut” (#4).

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

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

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂

Big Room goes booom with “Let’s Get This Thing Started” by Dutch producer @DJJohnChristian

JOHN CHRISTIAN, “Let’s Get This Thing Started”

Big Room is no longer a dirty dance music term when people like John Christian decide to make a huge anthem like “Let’s Get This Thing Started”.  John’s a Dutch producer whose White Villa Studios has been the destination for Madonna, Usher, Black Eyed Peas, Tiësto, Marshmello, and many more A-List performers.  So he’s not so well known to the rest of the world as a recording artist but “Let’s Get This Thing Started” should change that.  This is high quality, instantly enjoyable dance music with a frenetic pace that’s going to kick off many a festival set.  Be prepared to bounce for three and a half minutes of high energy fun!  Oh yeah – and that sneaky, familiar melody that slips in quietly?  Remember Hot Butter’s 1972 hit “Popcorn”?

Get this Banger, with no mash: It’s “Tea Time” with @WinandWoo

WIN & WOO, “Tea Time” (free DL)

Despite the headline, “Tea Time”, the latest from Chicago’s Win & Woo, has absolutely nothing to do with anything to do with England unless you want to have tea.  But unlike the alternately fanciful or emotional dance pop they’ve released over the last year or so, “Tea Time” is most certainly a Banger (capitalized)!!  It’s a brisk, fun song that’s probably going to be sampled by others to incorporate into festival or radio mixes, but it gets on quite well on its own, thank you.  For the last number of years, Win and Woo have been go-to remixers for many and have grown in their craft.  You can hear the finesse and sophistication in the mix of “Tea Time”, despite the lack of lyrics this time.  So it’s definitely a trade off with its memorable “it’s time for tea” drop, but “Tea Time” serves as a kick off to what looks like a super fun 2019 for Win & Woo!  Get it for free while it lasts at the link above.

Published in: on January 14, 2019 at 11:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Heaven” returns as a bigger bolder dance anthem courtesy of @Dzekomusic & @RiggiandPiros and @beingVeronica

DZEKO and RIGGI & PIROS and VERONICA, “Heaven”

Indeed, the 80’s #1 by Bryan Adams that originally started life as a ballad in a film called “A Night In Heaven” with Christopher Atkins and Lesley-Ann Warren has been reinvented and transformed many times, but none more successfully than DJ Sammy’s Europop version that became a worldwide smash in 2003.  As readers know, I’m particularly selective about what cover versions I enjoy.  And while some may think that 15 years may not have been long enough to welcome a new version to clubland, Toronto’s Dzeko and New Jersey’s Riggi & Piros fire it up and set it ablaze, aided by a winning vocal by another Torontonian, Veronica, who did well in Europe (and particularly Belgium with a #1) last year with “In The Mood”.  So this new version is definitely less pre-fab and more anthemic than the DJ Sammy version, from which it still draws inspiration.  And does it work?  Yep it sure does, for both clubs and radio. I’ll put money on radio stations – particularly in Canada, to support homegrown talent of Dzeko and Veronica – playing it to follow up Dzeko’s collaboration with Tiësto on “Jackie Chan”.  And I’d love to hear some remixers share their new takes on this pop classic to help broaden its appeal to receptive club DJ’s.

Published in: on January 14, 2019 at 11:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#Pandamagic “This Time” by #JaydenPanda with @CelineFarach and @Matluckmusic is cheerful, empowering EDM

JAYDEN with CELINE FARACH and MATLUCK, “This Time”

In pop music, there are no rules.  Joining Deadmau5, Marshmello, and a host of other masked dance music musicians and producers, we welcome Jayden into the electronic dance music genre.  The mystery man dresses in a panda outfit with an oversized head, which is equally goofy as the rest.  But where the difference here is the branding – a magical panda DJ/producer who can turn you into a kid for a few moments and then back again, making anything seem possible.  So is the basis of the story behind the video for “This Time”, Jayden’s first single, which has already amassed 1.6 views on You Tube in two weeks of release.  He’s already got a huge following of over 250K on Instagram too.  So establishing the visual presence was important, but so of course is the song.  “This Time” is cheerful and empowering, with a solid, memorable melody, and thank goodness for the infectious presence of two US singers, Céline Farach and Matluck (who you already know from some dance releases with Nicky Romero, Mike Williams, and Dzeko).  These two, with their voices, smiles, and attitude, all help bring the song to the next level.  Like with Marshmello, there will be an upward battle to break through, but don’t be surprised to see Jayden make some magical waves by mid-year.

Published in: on January 12, 2019 at 9:57 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #552, January 7/19

This is the 21st year of the BILLCS Top 30!!  The new year kicks off with its first chart and a shorter chart blog format.  

The Top 5 was excessively played over the holidays and stays exactly the same, with A-Trak and Todd Terry’s house music truth of “DJ’s Gotta Dance More” staying on top.  There’s nothing to challenge it immediately so it will likely be up top two weeks from now as well.

Jessie Ware’s “Overtime” and Hellberg & Leona Lewis’ “Headlights” each reach new peaks of #6 and #7 respectively.  L.A.’s Mahalo gets his 4th Top 10 entry paired with producer Le:Blanc for “In My Arms” (13-8).  The other new entry is the fastest riser on the chart, “God Damnit” by Illenium featuring the song’s writer, Call Me Karizma on vocals.  It climbs 15-9.  The song gives Illenium concurrent songs in the Top 10 (at #4 with the PatrickReza remix of “Crawl Outta Love”), and it matches the peak of Karizma’s previous Top 10 entry “u suck” from 2016.

A lot of songs get caught with small moves in a tight area of the chart that will likely loosen up in two weeks.  “Play”, the infectious new song by Jax Jones and Years & Years, moves up 20-15.  As “This Feeling” peaks at #8, “Siren” by The Chainsmokers and Aazar climbs 23-18.  Steve Void’s “Closure”, featuring a winning vocal by Andy Marsh, rises 24-19.  The rest of last week’s debuts make smaller moves:  “Flying Away” by NYC-based singer/songwriter Ryan Gibeau moves 25-22, and right behind it is the rollicking new song by The Him called “Look At Us Now”, up 26-23.  Check out the duo’s even more recent release, “Unstoppable”, below.  Molly Moore’s heartfelt “Be Here Now” rises 29-25.

Two debuts grace the chart by new performers.  Australia’s Sam Bluer has a catchy and danceable winner with “Bite My Tongue” at #27, which has a Troye Sivan “My My My!” vibe about it (they just happen to be label mates too) and is an even better follow up to last year’s fine “Body High”.  And there’s another Puth about to find his way onto your playlists.  Younger brother Stephen has a grittier, sparse sound with, guitar-spiced 60’s flavoured production on “Sexual Vibe” at #28.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

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

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂