“Line”, Latvia’s Eurovision entry by @TrianaPark receives a saxxy transformation by @Stan_Sax

TRIANA PARK, “Line” (Stan Sax remix) (free DL)

Germany’s Stan Sax is no stranger to these pages or my personal chart, having one of my favourite songs of the year with “Brothers” as part of duo Saxity, and adding trademark sax work to broaden the appeal of last year’s bubbly but inauspicious “Vague” by Fabian Luttenberger.  “Line” was this year’s Latvian entry for the Eurovision contest by the quartet Triana Park and regrettably this radio-friendly tune, a Top 10 hit in Latvia, didn’t move on to the upcoming finals.  But Mr. Sax has turned “Line” a bit inside-out and sideways, anchoring the song in a slower rhythm which gives it a more alt.rock vibe.  And of course there’s lots and lots of sax, and the melody and rhythm become a much more free-flowing jam session, making it quite the surprise by the end.  I often say that fine songs can receive some drastic but creative transformations and Stan Sax has a winner with “Line”, which you can download for free at the link above.

Check out the sophista-sax of “Holding You” by France’s @Slowzmusic in Germany’s @Stan_Sax edit

SLOWZ, “Holding You” (Stan Sax edit)

“Holding You” in its original version is a chilled out but jazzy and soulful instrumental with some 90’s flavour by France’s Slowz.  To enhance it for clubs, remixer/producer Stan Sax (one half of Germany’s Saxity) weaves his magic following up his edit of Fabian Luttenberger’s “Vague” by adding his insightful saxophone work to the proceedings, retaining its loungey/laid back approach but adding a romantic side to enhance its appeal.  Clubs looking for the right song for early evening as the lights begin to dim will want to add this edit of “Holding You” into their mix.  Download it for free at the link above.

 

Published in: on December 31, 2016 at 12:15 am  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #498 – December 12/16

The top of the chart becomes unzipped after a slew of long-lasting favourites give way, resulting in some huge moves, and other favourites depart, meaning that there are six debuts on the new chart, giving us a good sign of what’s in store for 2017 🙂

The Top 10

  • #1 and #2 duke it out and once again “Starboy” by The Weeknd featuring Daft Punk stays ahead of “Plans” by Elephante featuring Brandyn Burnette.  What a fine pair of songs to lead a very busy pack below!
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to Halifax’s Famba, whose fun and mainly narrated “Right Here Right Now” soars 16 to 3.  The song would make a good mix with 90’s hits “The Rockafeller Skank” by Fatboy Slim or “People Are Still Having Sex” by LaTour, to name two tunes that come to mind…
  • Amid the three songs that vault into the Top 10, “Just A Dream” by Molly Moore featuring Brandyn Burnette finds its way to #4, from Molly’s terrific Now You See Me EP.
  • Also sailing into the Top 5 from #17 is “D E E P In NY” by Bobby Nourmand featuring rappers DOC and Goodmorning.  “D E E P” is a unique record, originally a house instrumental that has been taken to another level with the hip hop vocals, and has found a place on Pete Tong’s renown show!  More to come I’m sure of it!
  • Pet Shop Boys look like they could be headed to the top with third single “Burn” from their album Super.  “Burn” ignites and rises 18-6.

  • Hey even Rihanna is in the picture – her gorgeous “Love On The Brain” moves 9-7.

  • Also new to the Top 10 is NYC singer Stefan Alexander with his pensive “Skeleton” climbing 15-9.
  • The 5th debut in the Top 10 belongs to Fabian Luttenberger whose laid back grower “Vague” climbs 11-10 in a Stan Sax remix.

What else could be movin’ up?

  • “The Thirst” is an infectious house track by Eric Sharp featuring vocalist Kenny Zhao that rises 20-14 with much thanks to some guitar effects which sound like Stardust’s classic “Music Sounds Better With You”.
  • “Brothers” by German duo Saxity featuring Norway’s Strøm on vocals is a sax-led dance track to warm your soul at this time of year.  It soars 25-16.

https://soundcloud.com/hellbergmusic/allthewayvip

  • “All The Way” by Hellberg continues to have long legs after premiering this past summer, climbing 26-19, and now the prominent Swedish producer has released a VIP mix to add to the fun.  Check it out above.

SIX Debuts

  • What a way to lead a fine group of debuts than with American pop/R&B singer Victor Perry’s beautiful rendition of Everything But The Girl’s “Missing”.  The piano-led cover bows at #23 and is available at Victor’s Soundcloud page above as a free download 🙂

  • It quickly scurried to #1 on Billboard’s Dance Club Play chart this past week, and like with its predecessor, the #1 “So Happy”, Tony Moran and Jason Walker have created another instantly memorable, fun, upbeat song with “Say Yes”, which arrives at #24.

  • Kid Cudi makes his debut on this chart with a somewhat provocative but good timey single “Surfin'”, featuring Pharrell Williams, and it premieres at #25, in advance of an album due next year.
  • I wrote about “Chemistry” by talented and affable young Dutchman Steve Void & No Mondays back in the Fall, but it has endured, and recently Epic Records picked it up for release!  After winning a remix contest, Syence presented their version this past week too.  “Chemistry”, featuring singer Clara Mae, bows at #26.  Listen to the original and remix above:)
  • L.A. producer Mahalo and vocalist Cat Lewis are quite the pair with a great song called “Be My Love”, which lands at #27 out of the gate.

https://soundcloud.com/felixcartal/drifting-away

  • After a great year of songs it seems only fitting that Canadian Felix Cartal should appear on the chart with the pop radio-worthy “Drifting Away”, featuring frequent vocal collaborator Ofelia K.  It debuts at #28.

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

Listen for me with my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST on http://www.planetradio.ca most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear this Wednesday (December 14) and next Tuesday (December 20) at 9pm EST! :)

#BILLCSTop30 #496 – November 14/16

Some favourites remain at the top while others tumble this week to make room for songs that have been waiting patiently in line…

The Top 10

  • “Native Son Prequel” by Gramatik and Leo Napier (Jenaux remix) (above) and “Balance” by The Him (below) have been my one-two punch now for three charts (six weeks), and it looks like they will yield to other songs in two weeks – but exactly which ones I do not even know yet!!
  • “Plans” by Elephante and Brandyn Burnette is definitely a contender for the top as it climbs 7 to 4.  Check out the new Acoustic version below 🙂
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs somewhat surprisingly to The Weeknd and Daft Punk, whose “Starboy” rockets 12-5, to become the highest ranking song by The Weeknd on my chart to date.  And… he has one of four debuts too!

  • L.A.-based producer Steve James pairs up with fellow L.A. duo RKCB for a fine blend of EDM and soul on “In My Head”, which rises 9-6.
  • And you’ll see Brandyn Burnette two more times in the Top 10 as his duet with his gal Molly Moore on “Just A Dream” (above, from her brand new EP Now You See Me, which he produced) leaps 13-8, while the Sean Turk remix of his own “Closer” (below) moves up 11-9.  Brandyn has achieved this feat before and most of his songs just make a bee-line for the Top 10 anyway 😛  It’s also the third song called “Closer” to reach my Top 10 this year, following songs by Elephante and The Chainsmokers.

Movin’ On Up

  • NYC trio Liquid Diet close in on the Top 10 with their Eurotastic “Luminary” and its provocative video, up 14-11 from their album Double Life.
  • That unassuming instrumental “Vague” by Fabian Luttenberger in its playful Stan Sax remix continues to gain momentum, climbing 17-14.

  • Cole Plante’s reworking of Womack & Womack’s classic “Teardrops” from 1988, featuring a powerful vocal by Bobi, rises 21-16 and is currently a Top 5 Billboard Club Play hit 🙂
  • My fun, fun, fun trio of debuts from two weeks ago are on the move:  “Right Here Right Now” by Halifax’s Famba (above) jumps 26-20, while Bobby Nourmand’s rework of his instrumental “Deep”, now called “D E E P In NY” featuring rappers DOC and Goodmorning (below), rises 25-22, and Convex & Titus get naaasty in a Snøwmass remix of “Bad Kids” (27-23, also below).

Four Debuts

  • Released by The Disco Fries’ new label Liftoff, producer Eric Sharp and vocalist Zhao have a powerhouse deep house tune called “The Thirst”, which is the highest debut at #25.
  • Pet Shop Boys put on an amazing show last week mixing in old with new and even a bit obscure, and one of the best songs from their latest album Super came out sounding quite grand.  “Burn” isn’t a single – but it should be – and arrives on the chart at #26.

  • If you’re used to the slick and soulful side of The Weeknd then you may be taken a bit aback as he lets loose with the rock-flavoured “False Alarm” at #27, from the upcoming Starboy album.  Not of course to be confused with the Matoma/Becky Hill song which hangs in at #21.

  • One of the nicest and most uplifting songs around right now is the EDM pop ballad “My Hands” by NYC vocalist Ayer, and it lands on the chart at #28.

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

Listen for me with my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST on http://www.planetradio.ca most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear this Wednesday (Nov 16) and next Tuesday (Nov 22) at 9pm EST! :)

Cheers to friendship and original songs like “Brothers” by @Saxity featuring #Strøm

SAXITY featuring STRØM, “Brothers”

Cologne, Germany-based duo Saxity have been noted this year for a variety of cover versions – from “Closer” and “In The Name Of Love” to “Can’t Stop The Feeling” and “Renegades” – and remixes.  They also successfully flourish separately, as Koni and Stan Sax, and with Saxity they bring out a happy collaboration of EDM songs that infuses live instruments, particularly guitar and saxophone.  So when I got asked – you read that right – if I knew any songwriters that might be interesting for Saxity to work with, the first one to come to mind was the illustrious Charlie Mason, about whose songs I’ve written too many times to count.  And while working with someone whose song (“Rise Like A Phoenix”) won Eurovision in 2014 might have not been on their radar, the extended collaboration, which also brought in the equally amazing Daniel Volpe, has worked like a charm.  And I don’t use that adage lightly here, because “Brothers” is loaded with charm, an ode to friendship and good ol’ brotherly love, enhanced even one step further by the gritty but sincere vocal by Strøm.  So this is where the suggestion has led (cue big cheesy grin) 😀 “Brothers” has everything that pop and dance music fans will adore – an unintrusive deep house rhythm, guitar, saxophone, contemporary lyrics that sink in deep, and a melody that simply gleams.  “Brothers” will make you smile and/or dance as it should.  Saxity has a real winner – not to be missed.  Listen to it at the Spotify link above and download it from your favourite digital store.

Published in: on October 28, 2016 at 11:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop 30 #494 – October 17/16

It’s another jam-packed chart full of activity, all of which I won’t be able to write about.  And there’s a new #1 too!!

The Top 10

  • It waited until “Closer” by The Chainsmokers and Halsey ran its course, but the new #1 song is “Native Son Prequel” by Gramatik featuring Leo Napier in a Jenaux remix.  Everything about this song is so cool, from the lyrics and vocals through to the remix.  The craziest and funkiest song to reach the summit here in a long time 🙂
  • Right behind “Native Son Prequel” is “Balance” by The Him (3-2), who are currently having a blast opening for The Chainsmokers on their European tour.  The guys have some potent new material on the way too.  Can “Balance” get to #1 in two weeks?  You’ll have to wait on that one!
  • Rounding out such an impressive Top 3 is the Two Friends remix of “Lights Down Low” by MAX (Schneider) moving 5-3.  A new version of “Lights Down Low” arrived the other day featuring the red-hot Gnash!
  • “We Don’t Talk Anymore” lands in the Top 5 for Charlie Puth and Selena Gomez.  If he’s well enough after a bout of illness that has seen him cancel some tour dates, I will be checking out Charlie Puth’s show on Tuesday October 18 evening.  Looking forward to hearing what he offers in concert!  Meanwhile give a listen to the DROELOE remix above.
  • New arrivals to the Top 10:  The bouncy europop bliss of “High” by Jesper Jenset in a Young Bombs remix (above) climbing 15-8; a powerhouse crowd-pleaser “Born Ready” by The Disco Fries featuring Hope Murphy, up 11-9; and eclectic EDM ballad “Stay” by Toronto’s Chet Porter featuring Chelsea Cutler, rising 14-10 (below).

Movin’ On Up

  • On the way to the Top 10, Steve James and RKCB have a surprisingly enduring EDM track with “In My Head”, still climbing 16-11.
  • The fastest riser on the chart belongs to Elephante featuring Brandyn Burnette for the beautifully thoughtful “Plans”, from the EP I Am The Elephante, which will follow Elephante’s “Closer” into the Top 10 as it rises 23-13!

  • The ever-ear-catching “Luminary” by NYC trio Liquid Diet continues to climb, moving 20-17.  Watch the tantalizing video above!

  • I suppose The Weeknd is bound to have his detractors now, but I’m looking forward to hearing his album Starboy when it is released at the end of the month.  Follow up single “False Alarm” should land on this chart soon, but “Starboy”, featuring Daft Punk, is off to a great start, leaping 24-18.
  • The unassuming but real earworm that is the sax-y instrumental “Vague” by Austria’s Fabian Luttenberger, in a Stan Sax remix, rises 28-21.
  • NYC duo Anden have a winning remix great for a late night drive with L.A. group Satchmode’s “Undertow”, which moves up 27-23.

A Pair of Debuts

  • L.A. producer/DJ Cole Plante lands on the chart for the first time with a cover of one of my favourite songs of all-time, Womack & Womack’s “Teardrops” at #27.  It’s no longer a duet, edited lyrically to be a club jam with a rousing, soulful vocal by Bobi.  It’s also become another Billboard Club Play Top 20 hit thus far for Cole, following his #1 from a few years back called “Lie To Me” when he was only 17!
  • NYC singer/songwriter Stefan Alexander has the other debut with “Skeleton” at #28.  Stefan marries a unique blend of progressive soul with dance music and a powerful vocal that may not strike you until a few listens later – it’s a real grower!   

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

Listen for me with my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST on http://www.planetradio.ca most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear Tuesday at 9pm EST! :)

#BILLCSTop30 #493 – October 3/16

Just after the New Year, the BILLCS Top 30 will reach its 500th chart!  Now I suppose if I had been posting it weekly it would be well over 1,000 editions by now.  In this edition, there are so many hot new songs that several get caught in a mid-chart log jam while others continue to flourish near the top.  And don’t discount the four new songs that arrive either!

The Top 10

  • “Closer” by The Chainsmokers featuring Halsey will always be a hard act to follow now that it’s one of the biggest hits of 2016.  So that’s all the more reason why Alex and Drew should release another single!  Below you can hear “All We Know” featuring Phoebe Ryan.

  •  (free download!)Both “Native Son Prequel” by Gramatik featuring Leo Napier in a Jenaux remix (holding at #2) and “Balance” by The Him featuring Oktavian (up 6 to 3) are positioning themselves nicely to succeed “Closer” at the top.  But which one will do it, or will something else beat them to it?  Aussie teen Joe Mason is already scoring on this chart with his remix of “Elevated” by RKCB at #13, but check out his remix of “Balance” below (free download!).
  • MAX gets his second Top 5 hit on this chart with the Two Friends remix of “Lights Down Low”, which vaults 9 to 5.  And if you missed my blog post on his new project called Party Pupils, with their cover of OutKast’s “Ms Jackson”, you can check it out right here.
  • The remixes keep arriving for “Rainbows” by Victor Perry, which continues to advance 8 to 7.  Check out Zewmøb’s bright and funky remix below (free download!).

 

  • I’m very happy that two EDM acts that continue to break out happen to land in my Top 10 at the same time.  Tritonal’s “Broken” (with Jenaux and featuring Adam Lambert, above) climbs 12-9 and “False Alarm” by Matoma featuring Becky Hill (below) moves up 13-10.  Matoma put on a heckuva show on September 23 in Toronto , where the audience was very drawn to the variety in his set… imagine what he could do with a stadium-sized audience!  Tritonal has their turn coming up in my city on October 14 🙂

Movin’ On Up

  • The fastest riser on the chart this week belongs to young Norwegian singer Jesper Jenset whose wickedly catchy “High” scores in a Young Bombs remix, climbing 22-15 ahead of some pretty fierce competition!
  • Also making a key move on the chart this week is Steve James collaboration with duo RKCB on “In My Head”, which like “High” has a drop that’s hard to beat.  “In My Head” moves up 20-16.

  • Rihanna’s “Love On The Brain” advances 21-19 but fear not, it’s just caught in that log jam of great new songs and should break loose in two weeks.

  • Liquid Diet’s “Luminary” from the trio’s debut album Double Life rises 24-20, while they’ve released a hilarious and raucous NSFW video to their song “My C**t” (below) – if you’ve seen something like it before, think less wild and Austin Mahone (also below) 😉

  • Rod Thomas, aka Bright Light Bright Light, has now proven three times that he can make great albums and not just great singles.  Each of his albums has excellent deeper tracks, and in particular those are the ones that register with me more on Choreography.  His collaboration with Scissor Sisters’ Ana Matronic “I Only Want To Please You” is up 26-21.
  • “Just A Dream” is a dark, hallucinogenic feast for the ears by Molly Moore and featuring Brandyn Burnette in one of their best vocal pairings yet.  Culled from Molly’s upcoming EP Now You See Me, “Just A Dream” climbs 27-22.

And They Keep On Comin’ … Four Debuts

  • Arriving at #23, why it’s Brandyn Burnette again (four times in this chart 😀 ), this time fronting Elephante’s song “Plans” from the I Am The Elephante EP.  “Plans” shows incredible versatility from both performers, just when you think there’s not another side that can be showcased, here it is!  Just a beautiful song, too.

  • If it didn’t get you from first listen – for shame!  My fellow Torontonian The Weeknd surprised everyone with the immediate release of “Starboy”, featuring none other than Daft Punk, and then its compelling video.  It should be topping charts everywhere in the next two weeks, and bows here at #24.
  • L.A. quintet Satchmode write some pretty interesting songs, and one of them, “Undertow” was recently remixed by NYC brothers Anden, which got it featured on Tiesto’s Club Life mix.  Anden gives it a late night cruising-down-PCH feel to it, and it premieres at #27!  My original post about it is right here.  It’s a free download too!
  • One of the most inauspicious instrumentals of 2016 received a winning remix this summer, which got it to #1 on the Hype Machine charts.  The song is “Vague” by Fabian Luttenberger, as remixed by none other than Saxity’s talented Stan Sax – so yes, do listen for the highlight that is the saxophone break!  “Vague” is one sultry affair that will be stuck in your head for days (check out my original post right here), and is new to the chart at #28.  It’s another free download!

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

Listen for me with my Pick of the Week at 2:20/6:20/10:20 AM/PM EST on http://www.planetradio.ca most days Monday through Sunday, and my flashbacks to a Toronto Top 10 of yesteryear Tuesday evenings at 9pm EST:)

 

 

A chill grower: “Vague” by @FabianLuttenb in a @Stan_Sax edit

FABIAN LUTTENBERGER, “Vague” (Stan Sax edit)

I often underestimate the power of EDM releases that are much more chilled out than what I usually listen to, and then before you know it I simply want to hear more.  Such is the case with Fabian Luttenberger’s “Vague”, an impressive tune that’s essentially an instrumental with female vocal effects.  It’s been given added perspective and a light house feel thanks to the edit by Stan Sax (aka one half of producers/performers Saxity) which adds that gloriously rich instrument which you’re hearing a lot in EDM these days – the saxophone!   And it all meshes and endures nicely through its five minute length.  “Vague” is perfect for early evenings in a club or when you want to start drawing club goers back out onto the dance floor with some ease and care.  Download it for free at the above link.

Published in: on July 28, 2016 at 10:46 pm  Comments (1)  
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