“Rise Up” is flowing and edgy future bass from Florida-based @Egzod with @officialVBravo and @theonlyMIME

EGZOD, VERONICA BRAVO and M.I.M.E., “Rise Up” (free DL)

France-born, Florida-based producer EGZOD continues to be one to keep listening for with his latest release “Rise Up”, definitely one of his best progressive ‘world bass’ songs to date.  The song plays back and forth between an enchanting vocal by Veronica Bravo (think Amy Lee meets Lights) and the hyper-powered flow of M.I.M.E. (think Busta Rhymes versus Tech N9ne).  EGZOD makes sense of it all along the way, imaginatively fusing together what might seem as disparate styles.  This makes “Rise Up” a compelling call to youth, to keep taking themselves to new heights and not give up.  “Rise Up” is generously available as a free download while it lasts.

Published in: on May 23, 2019 at 10:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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It’s 10/10 #03: New songs from @JayB1rdmusic and @DanniCarra, @Prizmofficial, @NickHagelin and @itsPaxton, @DaveWinnel, @JanosBAndersson, @thisisMokita, @iamNickPeters and @JamieGreymusic, @weareGODAMN, @Aadysimusic, and @iamAxelM

10/10 #03

10/10 (or tenoutoften) is this blog’s new feature where I write about 10 hot and fresh songs in no particular order, for your kind consideration and attention.

I continue to write individual blog posts about certain songs.  That does not mean that songs in the 10/10 lists are any less than those featured individually. 

Writing 10/10 features means I can cover more songs in one shot .  So you get to learn about more new music that I hear but don’t always get a chance to write about. 

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  • JAY BIRD and DANNI CARRA, “Let You Down” (free download)

“Let You Down” marks a personal best for SoCal producer/remixer Jay Bird.  It’s one of those songs where every aspect has been carefully crafted, balanced, and executed.  With a beautiful melody and danceable rhythm that doesn’t bow to any particular dance sub-genre, “Let You Down” is a warm and inviting story about being dedicated to a special someone.  It also marks another collaboration with singer Danni Carra (check out my blog post about “The Reason”, which was released earlier this year).  “Let You Down” is a generous free download – get it while you can at the link above.

  • PRIZM, “The Prizm”

L.A. based producer Prizm returns after a bit of a break to showcase his melodic side after a few harder edged tracks last year.  “The Prizm” has an uplifting, anthemic quality about it at times, and veers into softer, emotional EDM about half way through before the beats return and lead to a quiet ending.  The song reminds me, production-wise, of others that have come from Sweden in the past few years, using a pitched up vocal to carry it through.  The result is a creative and diverse release that should serve as a springboard for Prizm.  

  • NICK HAGELIN and PXTN, “Good Time”

“Good Time” is a breezy Latin-infused song meant for mid-evenings as the sun is setting.  It comes from always charming Atlanta-based singer/songwriter and ballet dancer Nick Hagelin, about whom I’ve written for many years, including long before his Top 10 finish in Season 10 of “The Voice”.  Taking time to balance raising a young family and maintain his professional dancing while recording and writing songs, “Good Time” marks Nick’s first release in about two years with a nice change of pace, still sounding fresh and improvised at times.  Here he brings along his buddy from “The Voice”, fellow Top 10 finisher Paxton Ingram (here billed simply as PXTN), which adds an in sync energy to the song.  Here’s to more new music from Nick Hagelin!

  • DAVE WINNEL, “Ksamil”

Dave Winnel is an Australian producer/remixer who divides his time between Sydney and The Netherlands, thanks to his work with Armin van Buuren and many others associated with the Armada label.  Only recently starting to release his own material, a four song EP called Lily Of The Valley (The Journey) has arrived from Dave.  Amid some imaginative, more progressive songs comes “Ksamil”, which has a different presence from the other songs.  “Ksamil” is small beach-side village in Albania in which Dave wrote it.  In contrast to some percolating synths, it’s got relaxing and gentle elements that make it perfect for an outdoor festival on a sunny day.  Play this one back-to-back with Tez Cadey’s “Logic” and create your own mini-voyage.

  • JANOS, “Zero”

Janos is a Norway-based Swedish singer, songwriter and musician who has been releasing music for most of this decade, receiving some attention at home and in England.  “Zero” is danceable alternative pop-rock with an outside-of-the-box approach to songwriting.  I’m really not too sure what the song is actually all about but there’s an affable vocal, tight instrumentation and production, as well as a carefree feel that, despite Janos’ European origins, reminds me most of 90’s American bands like Third Eye Blind or The Rembrandts.

  • MOKITA, “Til I Don’t”

Current blog favourite Nashville-based singer/songwriter Mokita continues his sturdy roll of top notch songs with “Til I Don’t”, following “All Into Nothing” (with R3HAB), “London”, and “Kiss And Tell”.  “Til I Don’t” is a quickie at only 2:07 and perhaps his slightest of the four, but it’s tightly crammed with words from Mokita’s always interesting perspective on relationships.

  • NICK PETERS and JAMIE GREY, “Where Did You Go”

18 year old French producer Nick Peters has released a few consistent singles of his own since 2016, while providing remixes for others such as Major Lazer.  Regular blog readers know how much I enjoyed his 2017 collaboration with Frank Pierce and Scott Vega (now known collectively as Juscova) called “No Love In Brooklyn” (#4 on my personal chart).  “Where Did You Go” is top drawer and benefits from anchored deep house beats and rhythms, and a memorable, soulful vocal from British singer Jamie Grey.  The radio edit alters the pace slightly, so go for either version, focused on the beat or the lyricism, as you see fit.

  • GODAMN, “Kickers”

Although they were previously known under other names in the dance music scene, GODAMN is a Swiss production duo who have been getting support from the best in the biz since they emerged under this name in 2017.  Their latest, “Kickers”, is a fun bass house production that would highlight any club DJ’s set and trigger instant reaction from lovers of this sub-genre.  GODAMN have a clever, bouncy club hit in the making with “Kickers” so lend an ear for it this Spring and Summer.

  • AADYSI, “Don’t Need You”

Taking its cue seemingly from both techno-styled trap and science fiction movie themes, NYC producer Aadysi is back with “Don’t Need You”.  Featuring Aadysi’s own vocal, the song starts off with some punchy beats, but slows down into a trap-influenced rhythm which morphs into some unexpected and smartly made progressive synth pop.  “Don’t Need You” then circles back to its heavier edges before a soothing, spacey ending.  It’s a stylish electronic kiss off to a past relationship that’s well worth your attention.

  • AXEL MANSOOR, “Busy”

L.A.-based singer/songwriter Axel Mansoor continues his consistent string of releases with “Busy”.  Ever the interested observer in relationship, Axel provides a convincing story to ensure that you do not forego who and what are right in front of you every day.  A midtempo beat and some well-placed synth work carries a lilting acoustic guitar melody that will make you clap or tap along.  “Busy” is indie pop that goes down easy while providing honest food for thought.

Weekend Dance Roundup Part 2: @DubVisionmusic & @SYZZmusic @PLSandTYbased & @GANZgvnz & #Nevve @TheHim & @Lootemusic @iamAlanWalker, @SabrinaAnnLynn, and @Farrukoofficial @Ekalimusic & @L-1788 @ArminvanBuuren & @BonnieMcKee @SultanShepard & #CarlaMonroe @Goldroom @Robokidmusic @Kremerkmusic

Following up yesterday’s Part 1, here’s the second part of my Weekend Dance Music Roundup, I’m featuring 10 more new dance music releases, in no particular order, some of whom are by performers you may see at Miami Music Week.

  • Dutch brothers DubVision and fellow Dutch production duo SYZZ positively sparkle with the high energy of “Enlighten Me”.  This is a zesty 2:37 dance track that will have you chanting the urgent chorus and feeling great afterwards.  It’s one of DubVision’s very best tracks and the partnership with Syzz is well worth repeating.  A festival fist pumper for sure.

During Miami Music Week, DubVision play at Firebeatz and Friends on Tuesday March 26 and at Ultra Music Festival on Saturday March 31.

  • One of my favourite songs last year was the Morgan Page extended mix of PLS&TY’s “Down For Me”.  The Florida producer returns in collaboration with Dutchman Ganz for “Motives”.  The song starts off rather unassumingly but gradually builds to a feverishly emotional state by the minute mark, thanks to the signature voice of go-to dance music singer Nevve.  This is one of her best and most committed vocals that rides the sometimes hard-hitting future bass production later in the song.  Sway away and enjoy!
  • Norway’s Alan Walker has crafted something totally unexpected with “On My Way”.  Harkening back to three years ago when “Faded” astounded everyone, Alan employs the sharp voice of star-on-the-rise Sabrina Carpenter (currently in the Billboard club chart Top 10 with “Sue Me”) for a song that’s totally suited to her.  It begins with R&B flavour that you might associate with Rihanna, then drifts off to the islands with a vocal break from Puerto Rico’s Farruko.  By the end you’ll feel like you’ve been on a bit of an adventure so check it out!
  • Also with tropical flavours but with a more relaxed, summery vibe is “Tell Your Friends”, the latest from blog favourites The Him.  Steven and J have brought aboard American duo Loote for effortless give ‘n take vocals which make the song simply breeze by with its appealing synth-peppered bounce.

The Him plays Spinnin’ Sessions at Spinnin’ Hotel on Wednesday March 27 and Klingande’s Playground Pool Party on Sunday March 31 during Miami Music Week.

  • A new and potent instrumental is brought to you courtesy of Mexican producers Kremerk called “Nowhere”.  Premiered recently by Nicky Romero, “Nowhere” doesn’t hold back any punches with its lively synths and creative, progressive production which sometimes recalls Afrojack.  Its relentless pace doesn’t give up for a second of its 2:46 length.
  • It’s been out for about a month, but “Ruin” by the one-of-a-kind collaboration of Ekali and 1788-L delivers in just about every way possible.  Highly inventive and drawing heavily from trap and dubstep, “Ruin” is one song that will neither tire you out with an overabundance of effects, nor will you tire of its frequent changes of pace.  There’s a beautiful, underlying melody amid the experimentation, and these guys just make it all sound even more fascinating as the song progresses.  While it might not be for everyone, “Ruin” should become a centerpiece in sets by both performers.

1788-L plays no less than four events during Miami Music Week on Thursday March 28 (twice, including Brownies & Lemonade Miami), Friday March 29 and Saturday March 30.

  • From his recent 8 song release RK1, Boston’s Robokid has a real grower with “Everything Around You”.  Co-produced by the enigmatic Kid Froopy – you’ll remember 2017’s “Drive Slow” – “Everything Around You” happily marries early-to-mid 2000’s alt.influences of bands like Blink 182 and All-American Rejects with simmering electronics and a taut vocal arrangement that helps make the chorus so memorable.  
  • L.A.’s Goldroom offers up a different kind of slice of life with “Cocaine Girl”.  Its lazy west coast vibe is the perfect foil for a story in which the subjects just seem content to live a dreamy, carefree life.  Its uncomplicated-sounding synth arrangement recalls 80’s Depeche Mode and there are some nice acoustic guitar touches as well.  
  • After dazzling us recently with their instrumental “American Beauty” (based up on the score of the movie of the same name), Sultan + Shepard continue but this time with a solid house banger in “Deeper”.  It packs even more of a wallop thanks to the presence of the killer voice of Carla Monroe – she of MK’s “17” fame.  “Deeper” has the potential to be yet another huge club smash for my Canadian brethren.

Sultan + Shepard play Mixmash Takeover on Thursday March 28 and Armada Invites Miami on Saturday March 30 during Miami Music Week.

  • And what would this year’s Miami Music Week be without a new song from the master who is Armin van Buuren?  Departing from the anthemic humour of “Blah Blah Blah”, Armin brings a delightful song full of longing, powered by the voice of none other than “American Girl” herself, Bonnie McKee.  You wouldn’t expect Bonnie in this setting and Armin weaves some intense synths and beats around her gracious presence.  Armin has a long history with me, going back to 2003’s haunting “Yet Another Day”, and 16 years later continues to deliver the heat amid many talented contemporaries. 

Armin van Buuren plays Ultra Music Festival on Saturday March 30 and Sunday March 31.

 

 

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.

Record Roundup: @dawncalltwitt @subsetsmusic @ayellemusic @snowmassmusic @monamoua @odesza @chetporter @keyrouzmusic @henripurnell @beticalmusic @sikdope

While I haven’t been writing as of late for one reason or another, including being away for a week, you can bet that I have kept listening to submissions I’ve received and other songs that have caught my attention.  Some songs will get their own blog posts but here are six that are definitely worth your attention 🙂 :

Ahhh those vocals, that atmosphere!

DAWNCALL & SUBSETS and AYELLE, “Ghost”

“Ghost” covers a lot of bases, pairing relative newcomers Israel’s Dawncall with the UK’s Subsets to create an attentive, eerie, seductive song that showcases UK singer Ayelle’s crisp and captivating vocal, recalling her recent work with Taska Black.  It’s definitely one for club DJ’s to offer up after a big, loud set heading into the wee hours.

SNOWMASS and MONA MOUA, “Wait For Me”

Everyone’s favourite Chicago snowman/producer returns with a similarly progressive track to his previous release “Crossfire”, also featuring the unique voice of Mona Moua.  It’s a taut and always interesting production that goes really big and then equally quiet at times, always keeping your ears peeled for something unexpected.

All about the remix

ODESZA and WYNNE & MANSIONAIR, “Line Of Sight” (Chet Porter remix)

Hey if my fellow Torontonian Chet Porter is going to resurface with something new – even if it’s not his own song – then why not make it with a glowing official remix of “Line Of Sight” from Odesza’s Grammy-nominated A Moment Apart.  As always, for this fan favourite, Chet zeroes in on the melody and transforms its hook from anthemic trap to electronic synth bliss that soars for miles…

HENRI PURNELL and PARULA, “Mama Say” (Anthony Keyrouz remix)

Lebanese producer Anthony Keyrouz adds some magic to “Mama Say”, a fine pop song in its own right by German producer Henri Purnell featuring vocalist Parula.  He pitches down the vocal a bit and adds a percolating rhythm and Latin-sounding guitar work to conjure up images of the sunny Mediterranean countryside, taking the song in a slightly different but most welcome European folk-infused direction.

Who needs words anyway?

BETICAL, “Strangers”

French producers Betical bring a lot of intrigue to the fore with “Strangers”.  With a heavy, dark atmosphere laid out with future bass rhythms, “Strangers” is perfect for late night spins with lots of flashing lights which will augment the echoing vocals that are appropriately layered deeper into the mix.

SIKDOPE, “Rave”

From the Moe Shalazi stables comes Polish producer Sikdope with “Rave”.  It’s a bouncing, fun, progressive tip of the hat to all fans of raves and their music.  Play this one for a huge crowd and it’s guaranteed to make everyone respond, so it has future festival fave written all over it.  

“Let It Go” is bright and tasty future bass from Toronto’s @Wildfirebeats

WILDFIRE, “Let It Go”

“Let It Go” is meant to be played from huge speakers at an outdoor club pool party, with enough high-end future bass sounds to resonate around the block.  It’s all brought to you courtesy of Toronto-based producer Wildfire (aka Paul O’Brien) with bright and shiny synths and a crisp female vocal.  The rhythm of “Let It Go” struts along well until a few well placed drops cause you to lose control and let your body flow right along.  I do believe Wildfire has a lot of potential with “Let It Go”, and the producer has already received past support from the likes of The Chainsmokers and Alison Wonderland.

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Published in: on February 14, 2019 at 11:46 pm  Leave a Comment  
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New partially-masked producer @Aadysimusic offers up wild and futuristic “Myth”

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AADYSI, “Myth” (free DL)

Joining the mystique of fellow producers like Alan Walker by wearing a partial mask, the otherwise NYC-based Aadysi (say it like ‘odyssey’), who’s a student of the ICON collective (like Jauz or NGHTMRE), has a lot going on in his instrumental “Myth”, which is available below for free while it lasts.  It’s a striking song that has a lot of different movement within, from isolated piano sounds to grinding, wild ‘forbidden bass’ trap and almost industrial flavours.  “Myth” somehow all works because it’s so unpredictable and makes you anticipate that Aadysi’s music could be a lot of fun in the offering.  Its nearly 3 minutes come and go in a flash, so I’ll definitely be interested in hearing what’s coming from Aadysi.

 

 

Published in: on October 21, 2018 at 5:11 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Deep House meets Dancehall meets Future Bass in “Plang” by Germany’s @Donkongmusic with @KaNextLevel

DONKONG and KA NEXT LEVEL, “Plang”

Yes, the headline is true – “Plang” is all about the rhythm, with elements of deep house and future bass finding a happy marriage with dancehall, courtesy of forward thinking German producers Donkong and vocalist/lyricist Ka Next Level (who in the song give an alias as “Yung Coconut”).  The results are enjoyably different and highly original, and everything gels to keep you going full tilt right to the end.  “Plang” will ring those bells in dance clubs, and will corral dancers to strut their stuff.  Gotta hand it to Ka Next Level for helping to take this song way beyond ordinary dancehall with a voice that at times will remind you of Shaggy and mini-stories within that will keep you entertained.  Add “Plang” to your Dance & Shout playlist using the Spotify link above.

Published in: on August 23, 2018 at 10:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Trippy” is electronic love to the max from Germany’s @itsKoyu and production duo @TheCliqque

KO:YU and THE CLIQQUE, “Trippy”

Now stylizing his name as KO:YU, veteran producer Deniz Koyu returns with a change of pace in collaboration with German buddies The Cliqque with the futuristic sound of  “Trippy”.  Featuring a delightful uncredited female vocal, “Trippy” is all about taking love to the extreme and letting it spiral out of control.  Indeed, KO:YU and The Cliqque send your head spinning with high end, percussion-laden dubsteppy breakdowns that punctuate a solid pop melody without throwing the song off course.  This makes the song sound quite effortless and its 3 minutes flow by with amazing ease.  Add “Trippy” to your Love Gone Wild playlist using the Spotify link above.

Published in: on August 10, 2018 at 2:41 pm  Leave a Comment  
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New Dutch producers @Oomloudmusic impress with EP Pyramids/Yummy Funk

OOMLOUD, Pyramids/Yummy Funk (EP)

Could there be any more room in the dance music world for yet another fine pair of Dutch producers?  The answer is a resounding YES, as Oomloud make their case with a two song EP Pyramids/Yummy Funk, which follows up a debut single that featured none other than Bingo Players.  The guys in Oomloud – their name is a fun play on the word ‘umlaut’, the diacritic symbol ¨ usually representing a ’rounding’ sound change in some languages, but also often used for unofficial effect, such as by Rüfüs Du Sol, your linguistic lesson for the day 😛 – know their way around a deep house groove, and in both songs they don’t hesitate to get both dirty and playful, with full intention on blowing up club speakers to the max.  The drops in “Pyramids” are resounding, while “Yummy Funk” messes with you like a good European mix should.  The songs are already getting support from the biggest in the biz – David Guetta, Robin Schulz, Afrojack – so you can expect these songs to last long into the Fall months.  

Published in: on August 1, 2018 at 11:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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