“Blue” is tight deep house with a few twists from Netherlands-based producers @Revelriesmusic with L.A. producer @thisisRobTirea and vocalist @Kayraelien

REVELRIES & ROB TIREA and KAYRAE, “Blue”

With every single they release, Netherlands-based Emirati producers Revelries put a unique twist on dance music, usually in the house or deep house sub-genres.  This time with “Blue” they work with L.A. producer Rob Tirea and vocalist Kayrae, who co-wrote the song.  An urgent and expressive vocal is set against a driving house rhythm, with a few impressive pauses along the way, that command your attention to make “Blue” not your ordinary-sounding dance track.  The producers spike it with elevated bass synth work  and everything works well together.  “Blue” is a bit left of centre and may not be an immediate draw, but stick with it and you’ll look forward to hearing it more and more.

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.

“Grateful” is a winning reggae/hip hop/R&B preview of the upcoming album by @EMAN8

EMAN8, “Grateful”

When Brandyn Burnette announced last year that he would be recording solo as EMAN8 going forward, we knew that he was definitely going to spread his wings stylistically.  To date, singles such as “Amen” and “Inspired” have seen the L.A.-based singer/songwriter go back to his St. Louis blues and soul roots without losing any pop elements.  “Grateful” is possibly the best preview yet of EMAN8’s upcoming album.  It’s a song that simply makes you smile, drenched mainly in Bob Marley and Jimmy Cliff reggae rhythms which connect with the soul and hip hop inspiration that have been integral parts of Brandyn’s previous releases.  One thing we have all learned from his music is that EMAN8 wears his feelings on his skin – what you see is always what you get.  “Grateful” is perfect soul food for feel-good sunny days where we can chill and enjoy and be thankful for one other.

Published in: on May 5, 2019 at 5:04 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Mood”is an engaging dance floor filler from NYC’s @Zack_Martino and L.A.-based singer @IamDysonmusic

ZACK MARTINO and DYSON, “Mood”

“Mood”, by rising NYC producer Zack Martino and L.A.-based singer Dyson, strikes a solid balance between emotional story-telling pop and electronic dance music that’s anchored by a delicious deep house bass synth hook.  Dyson sings about what puts her in the right mood which immediately translates into fun for the dance floor.  Young Zack Martino has come a long way in a short while, from steady remixes for the likes of The Chainsmokers through to originals which have received the seal of approval from almost every major dance producer.  He was also showcased at Armada Music’s main event at Miami Music Week this year and recently remixed label head Armin van Buuren’s “Lonely For You”.  “Mood” draws you in well before the first minute and could be a worthy dance radio follow up to Zack’s big Dance Mix/Show Airplay hit “Hold On To Me” and his #1 club remix of VASSY & Lodato’s “Doomsday”.

Published in: on May 5, 2019 at 5:04 pm  Leave a Comment  
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L.A.’s @weareMako pushes boundaries with futuristic rock-electronica of “Coyote”

MAKO, “Coyote”

When I last saw Mako – L.A.-based singer/songwriter/producer Alex Seaver – in concert over a year ago, he tipped me off after the show that his next releases would be much more adventurous and progressive.  And while he’s been busy scoring the video game series League Of Nations and collaborating with the likes of Illenium and The Glitch Mob, there was nothing to prepare me and his fans for “Coyote”.  The dance/pop of “Smoke-Filled Room” and “Breathe” now has to make room for a new futuristic, intense and emotional side of Mako.  “Coyote” is a dark song that you might find amping up a critical scene in a movie rather than on the dance floor.  It’s challenging but draws you in, allowing you to expect the unexpected without being polarized.  Mako has a dedicated fan base that I think will easily embrace “Coyote”.  I’d also definitely pitch the song to fans of Illenium, Odesza, Rufus Dü Sol and others who continue to successfully test the waters with songs and styles that stimulate and instigate your attention.  Like other performers such as Lemaitre, I must remind you that Mako is also a rock band led by Alex and there is prominent guitar and other live instrumentation amid the electronics in “Coyote” too.  Check out the animated lyric video above.

Published in: on April 15, 2019 at 9:35 pm  Leave a Comment  
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It’s a happy-go-lucky throwback – and instant Graduation Song for 2019 – for @itsPapaYamusic with “Yesterday”

PAPA YA, “Yesterday”

Every once in a while L.A. duo Papa Ya grace us with a new, cheery slice-of-life song.  This year we have the wistful bop “Yesterday”, obviously written with a past love in mind.  But with a delightful video of home movies and a summery synth melody, “Yesterday” also has Graduation Song 2019 written all over it and to me should be marketed as such!  This is a no-brainer, feel good, singalong in whose lyrics anyone can see themselves.  Do yourself a favour and stream and download “Yesterday” and remember where you read about it!

Published in: on April 13, 2019 at 9:21 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Unity is beautiful in “Shoulder To Shoulder” by @thebandWOLVES

WOLVES, “Shoulder To Shoulder”

L.A.-based trio WOLVES – Mark, Sean and Rocky – want you to unite for all of the right reasons and continue to be hopeful in “Shoulder To Shoulder”.  And according to the band “This single is dedicated to the life, work, and principals of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.” There’s great talent in this record and it’s terrific to see it emerging to promote unity and social justice.  To boot, it’s an earworm of a pop anthem that doesn’t let up and would probably sound even better and more urgent in concert.  Songs like “Shoulder To Shoulder” will definitely help WOLVES get attention, and I look forward to hearing more from them.  Check out the lyric video above.

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Published in: on February 18, 2019 at 5:40 pm  Leave a Comment  
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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.

 

SoCal’s Inspired & The Sleep @insprdandtheslp is back with positive grooves of “Stay”

INSPIRED AND THE SLEEP, “Stay”

SoCal indie duo Inspired And The Sleep (aka singer/songwriter/producer Max and multi-instrumentalist Bryce) get their groove on this time with “Stay”.  And why not – it’s about being deep in the throes of love, so there are nothing but positive vibes here.  Max’s gentle and knowing vocal sets the stage while the groove generates an easy going but funky rhythm to make it all work well.  Picture a late night drive down PCH as the warm winds blow from the deserted beaches while you’re with your special someone.  “Stay” is the ideal soundtrack for those kinds of moments.

Published in: on December 16, 2018 at 11:25 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Late night fun awaits with “Don’t Think Twice” by @Revelriesmusic & @SamSmyers with @Oktavianmusic

REVELRIES & SAM SMYERS and OKTAVIAN, “Don’t Think Twice”

The Emerati duo based out of The Netherlands, Revelries, quickly follows up two fine singles in the inspiring “Infinitum” and the exotic “Naked” with the deep house rhythms of “Don’t Think Twice”.  This one’s in partnership with L.A. producer Sam Smyers and features another solid but all too rare vocal by L.A.-based Dutch singer Oktavian, who you know from his work with The Him and Lady Bee among others.  “Don’t Think Twice” is about late night fun when you’ve maybe had a drink too many, and your first and best choice may not be the one you decide to take, hoping that all works out well in the end.  The rich production is perfect for late night club sets and “Don’t Think Twice” is nothing if dance radio friendly as well.