#BILLCSTop30 #585 – April 13, 2020

I’m using this bi-weekly chart feature to take a moment to check in with you all to make sure you are doing well and staying safe.  It’s also a reminder that music is a huge distraction for everyone, so when you’re not checking out new stuff to hear, be sure to take the time now to dip into your own personal catalogue of favourites.  I’m fortunate after so many years to have a wide selection of vinyl albums, 45’s, 12″ extended mixes, cassette tapes, CD’s and Mp3’s at my disposal.  So when you feel you have nothing to do, or feel like you’re cleaning the house for the 10th time this week, put some music on either as background or to help transport you to be where ever you want!

It’s really turning out that my #1 song is very apropos for these times.  Chicago producer Whethan and Toronto singer/songwriter grandson combine forces for the alt.rock/dance frenzy of “All In My Head”, which takes the top spot for a second appearance. This one really deserves a shot for play on alternative rock stations.

Right behind once again at #2 are the gentle intentions as spelled out in “Backfire” by Italian producer Deep Chills with L.A. vocalist/songwriter Not Famous.  The arrangement the vocals make “Backfire” distinct in these times when many dance songs use the same formula.

Gareth Emery’s “Yesterday” (above), with fellow producer Nash and LA vocalist Linney, climbs 5-3, while the British producer’s follow-up, independently released single “You’ll Be OK” (featuring Annabel, below), from his upcoming album The Lasers, rises 29-21.

Like Gareth, Russian producer Arty has two fantastic songs on the chart.  Not only that but he contributed to the Beatport online festival a few weeks back with a dynamic DJ set.  “Daydreams” (above), featuring singer Cimo Fränkel in the Sultan + Shepard “echoes of life remix”, jumps 6-4, while the anthemic, much needed vibes of “You’re Not Alone” (featuring singer Griff Clawson, below) is the Fastest Riser on the chart, soaring 22-13.

I’m absolutely loving Porter Robinson’s latest reinvention of his style as “Get Your Wish” (from the upcoming album Nurture) rises 11-5.

And it’s another big jump for the Highest Debut from two weeks ago, “I Don’t Wanna Go Home” by L.A. producer The Prizm featuring vocalist and co-writer/producer ARTFCAL.  It wastes no time leaping 13-6. ARTFCAL has been in the Top 10 twice before under another name… I will leave that reveal to another time.

After contributing to both Beatport and Digital Mirage online music festivals, we must tip our hat to one of the current young masters who does his own thing like no one else – Montreal-born, NYC-based A-Trak.  His song with UK producer Friend Within called “Blaze” climbs 12-9.  A-Trak also contributed to one of the debuts which you’ll find out further down.

Shawn Hook is another performer investing some time to participate in online concerts.  The B.C. native zips up the chart 17-10 with his Canadian radio hit “I Don’t Wanna Dance”.

UK singer/songwriter Sam Dickinson is gunning for his next Top 10 entry – amazingly, all of Sam’s songs that have appeared in the chart have thus far reached the Top 10.  But for now, amid the competition, the stylish sounds of “Diamond Skin” climb 18-12.

Don Diablo was also a part of last weekend’s immense, memorable Digital Mirage festival.  His song “Congratulations”, featuring vocalist Brando, rises 19-14.

The Highest Debut arrives at #16 – a song that I wasn’t even sure if would make my chart when I wrote about it a few weeks back.  But I understand its song structure better, and both its melody and emotion have crawled underneath my skin big time.  It belongs to Nashville producer Super Duper with “All On You”.

Also offering more personalized online broadcasts is L.A. producer Mahalo, usually on Instagram.  Try to catch his sets when you can, and in the meantime, the Danny Quest remix of “Tongue Tied”, in partnership with Disco Killerz and vocalist/songwriter Brandyn Burnette (EMAN8) moves up 25-19.

As “Starlight” slowly makes its departure from the chart, the second song featuring NYC-based singer/songwriter Victor Perry is on the rise.  His third release with German producer Levi called “Lost Boy” leaps 27-20.

The second debut this week is an interesting one from a couple of different angles.  It’s called “So Ready” by former Tony! Toni! Toné! vocalist Raphael Saadiq and lands at #24. The first item is that Raphael sets a record of longevity between chart appearances.  His last entry on the chart was “Get Involved”, with Q-Tip – which got to #21 in 1999!  And that’s 21 years – to the EXACT WEEK, strangely enough!  The second item is that “So Ready” enters the chart as “The Brothers Macklovitch remix” – the Macklovitches being Canadians Alain and Dave, aka A-Trak and one-half of Chromeo!  It’s a fun, speedy, classic house mix that doesn’t let up.

The third debut belongs to “Bummed” by L.A.-based, Canadian producer Chet Porter and Aussie wunderkind Alison Wonderland at #26.  This early 80’s DIY inspired release is the first appearance for Chet on the chart since 2016’s “Stay” (with Chelsea Cutler, #6), and the first time Alison Wonderland has graced the chart.  Both performers also provided immensely enjoyable sets for the Digital Mirage online festival last weekend, and you can find them both on You Tube under the Proximity channel.

The BILLCS Viral Weekly is back 🙂 and will indeed be a weekly feature despite not appearing last week (again *groan*).  Some of the songs will change every week, particularly those by bigger name artists, and it will always include a mix of newer and independent artists with those who are more popular.  Check it out below!

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 🙂

#BILLCSTop30 #581, February 17/20

While former One Direction members don’t have three songs again in the new chart, they are back-to-back in the pole positions.

Zayn’s featured vocal totally makes “Flames” by producers R3HAB and Jungleboi (above) , and it holds at #1 for a second appearance at the top.  But right behind at #2 is “Adore You” by Harry Styles  (below) from Fine Line, so the two songs will battle it out for #1 in two weeks.  And Harry’s “Watermelon Sugar” rises a notch 8-7 too.

Awolnation’s catchy electronic rocker “The Best” (above) climbs 4-3, while Chicago production duo Autograf move up 10-5 with “Ain’t Deep Enough” (below).  That matches featured vocalist Jared Lee’s previous peak appearance on the Midnight Kids’ “Those Were The Days” last year.

Not surprisingly, Famba’s “Storm” (above), featuring fellow Canadian Kyra Mastro, becomes his third Top 10 hit on this chart, advancing 11-9, while yet another Canadian, Ekali acquires his first one in collaboration with Illenium and vocalist Chloe Angelides on “Hard To Say Goodbye” (12-10, below) from the album A World Away.

More Canadians have the fastest riser on the chart.  It belongs to Vancouver producers Young Bombs for their original featuring Aloe Blacc called “Better Day”.  It zips up the chart 22-14 and is on its way to becoming their second Top 20 radio hit in Canada, following last year’s “Starry Eyes”.  It’s also a Top 30 dance radio hit in the U.S.

The debuts from two weeks ago are already making inroads on the chart.  Arty’s “Daydreams” featuring Cimo Fränkel (above) climbs 24-18 in its Sultan + Shepard “echoes of life” remix.  The Russian producer has immediately followed it up with another thoughtful anthem, “You’re Not Alone” with vocalist Griff Clawson, below.

Louis Tomlinson’s touching “Don’t Let It Break Your Heart”, from his debut album Walls, is well on its way up the chart, rising 27-20.

“Better Off Without You” by Becky Hill and Shift K3Y has leapt into the Top 25 in their native UK, and it’s done the same thing on this chart, climbing 28-23.

The highest debut on the chart is the first appearance for Italian producer Gianmaria Sanna, otherwise known as Deep Chills, with a charming pop-flavoured slice of tropical-tinged electronica called “Backfire” featuring L.A. vocalist Not Famous.  It arrives on the chart at #21.  Check out the lyric video featuring both performers above.

Arriving at #24 and continuing his mighty comeback is British producer Gareth Emery with newcomer Nash for “Yesterday”.  The song has a classic 80’s feel which reminds me particularly of Mike Oldfield’s songs with Maggie Reilly, such as “Family Man” or “Moonlight Shadow”.  So thanks to L.A.’s Linney for capturing that vocal style, intentionally or not, which gives the song the gentle, reflective feels that it needs.  Check out the video from Gareth’s recent “Laserface” show in Minneapolis, above.

Following up last year’s snappy and infectious “Don’t Think Twice” (#2) is “Fall-Out” by Netherlands-based Emirati producers Revelries, this time in collaboration with fellow producers Boyboyboy and UK-based German vocalist Will Church.  It bows at #25.

The fourth debut is “Look Into My Eyes” by L.A. singer/songwriter Brando, who you know from his memorable vocal on Loud Luxury’s massive hit “Body”.  He returns to the chart at #27 with this original which also reworks Charles & Eddie’s 1992 hit “Would I Lie To You” into the hook of the song.

A reminder that the music from my chart and blog are featured regularly on the new online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂 Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!  I’m the new music consultant for the station so you can expect even more in 2020 🙂  You can start by joining our new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

 

#BILLCSTop30 #580, February 3/20

When One Direction last recorded about 5 years back – and they never appeared on this chart – no one could have told me that three of the members would be on this chart years later at the same time!  And for a second chart in a row, there are three Harry Styles songs in the Top 10.  And there’s a long line up of songs waiting to get into both the Top 10 and the Top 30!

So the second 1D member to reach #1 on this chart after Harry is… Zayn!  I didn’t care for his first solo album at all, but the second, the overlooked Icarus Falls, is really quite intriguing.  I was happy for him to spread his wings and work with a dance dynamo like R3HAB in partnership with fellow producer Jungleboi.  So it’s the stunning “Flames” that is on top, just in time for the arrival of its official video (above)! Although we can pretend that the mystery man in black is Zayn, alas he is not in the video.

And speaking again of Harry, and his supurb Fine Line album, “Adore You” advances 7-3 and seems like it might be the logical choice to succeed “Flames” at the top, fanciful video and all.

And right behind is L.A. alt.rockers Awolnation who climb 8-4 with their latest, with an incredibly infectious hook, “The Best”.

The Weeknd’s retrotastic “Blinding Lights” (above) becomes his 4th Top 10 hit on this chart, moving 11-9, while Autograf’s classy deep house track “Ain’t Deep Enough” (below), featuring singer Jared Lee, climbs 12-10.  It’s Jared’s second recent appearance in the Top 10 after last year’s #5 with Midnight Kids, “Those Were The Days”.

“Storm” by Famba and Kyra Mastro climbs 14-11 and is the current #1 dance song in the USA.  Check out his new EP Wishes Vol. 1, which features his other two big Canadian radio hits “Swear To God” and “Wish You Well”, plus three more new songs.

Ekali is only playing one Canadian date on his upcoming tour, but I’m sure more will follow as the producer has a flair for remembering to make up previously cancelled shows (like in Toronto).  From his new album A World Away comes his collaboration with Illenium, “Hard To Say Goodbye”, featuring the voice of Chloe Angelides, which moves up 17-12.

“Starlight” is a quiet, sweetly soulful winner for producer ZEROBADDAYS and singer/songwriter Victor Perry, as it glides up the chart from 19-14.

The Fastest Riser is the previous chart’s highest debut, “Mirage (Don’t Stop)” by the immensely talented Jessie Ware, which advances 23-17.  Don’t this silky slice of UK soul slip through the cracks!  And if some of the melody sounds slight familiar, and perhaps may have been an unintended source of inspiration, you might catch yourself singing parts of Shannon’s “Let The Music Play”…

Also holding its own amid a busy chart featuring a lot of power players is Toronto area duo Homestead, from their debut EP Beacon, with the danceable rocker “Lifeline” climbing 28-23.  Joël and Liam will be performing the entire EP and some new songs this coming Thursday in Toronto at the Northern Maverick Brewing Company, and I’ll be there to check it out!

The Highest Debut at #24 belongs to Russian producer Arty with vocalist Cimo Fränkel on the delightful “Daydreams”, soon to be a festival favourite in its Sultan + Shepard Echoes of Life remix, which sounds like a Coldplay song that’s taken a dive into melodic house.  It follows Arty’s 2018 instrumental tribute to Avicii called “Tim” which got to #3.  Official video of “Daydreams” is above, the Sultan + Shepard remix is below.

A third One Directioner arrives on the chart for the first time – it’s Louis Tomlinson with his captivating and incredibly sincere ballad “Don’t Let It Break Your Heart” at #27. He co-wrote it with the likes of James Newman, singer Wrabel, producer Stuart Crichton, and Cole Citrenbaum from the duo Opia, so lots of fine hands were in the mix.  It’s also from Louis’ debut album Walls, after over 3 years of singles-only releases.  And the 1D fans are incredibly happy about that.  Watch the video for a rather unbelievable ending!

The third debut is “Better Off Without You” by chart returnees Becky Hill and Shift K3Y at #28.  These Brits have both been in the Top 10 before.  Becky was the voice on Matoma’s “False Alarm” which got to #6 in 2016, while producer Shift K3Y got to #7 in 2015 with one of his early releases, “I Know”.  A bit of trivia for you: Shift K3Y’s real name is Louis Jankel, and he is the son of singer, songwriter and producer Chaz Jankel, who not only was a key member/songwriter with Ian Dury & The Blockheads (“Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick”) but also was prominent on the US dance charts in the early 80’s with the funky “Glad to Know You” and “Ai No Corrida” (later covered by Quincy Jones).

A reminder that the music from my chart and blog are featured regularly on the new online radio station Radio GTA. You can hear their Big 20 on Wednesday evenings with ‘The Musicman’ James Rogers and listen for songs from the chart too 🙂 Scroll down the station’s main page to listen to lots of variety from across the decades!  I’m the new music consultant for the station so you can expect even more in 2020 🙂  You can start by joining our new interactive Facebook group too!!

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 🙂

 

 

 

#BILLCSTop30 #563 – June 10/19

I’m so glad my big faves from very early Spring have carried over to make my birthday week a very happy place where ever I play the Top 3!  And the rest of the Top 10 is quite active, with three debuts rounding out the chart.

They are of course M-22’s “White Lies” (above), Cedric Gervais & Just Kiddin’s “Good Things” (disco edit) featuring vocalist Kyan (also above), and “Enlighten Me” by Dutch producers DubVision and SYZZ (below) giving the chart the zing it needs at 1-2-3!

MAX is back in the Top 5 for the first time as a lead artist since “Lights Down Low” got to #3 in its Two Friends remix in 2016.  Was I just an early bird on that one, or were y’all late heads?  Anyway, “Love Me Less” (featuring Quinn XCII) climbs 7-4.

Nashville’s Mokita is on his way to the Top 5 for a second time this year with “Kiss And Tell” rising 9-6.  And then there’s his new one “Inside Out” too so watch for it in this space in the near future…

The Chainsmokers acquire their 10th Top 10 since 2015 with “Do You Mean”, featuring Ty Dolla $ign and Canada’s Juno Award-winning bülow moving up 11-7.

The fastest riser on the chart had its video debut today.  Soaring up the chart 20-9 is Illenium & Jon Bellion’s “Good Things Fall Apart”.  This is Illenium’s third Top 10 entry since the late Fall.  Check out that intriguing video above.

Rounding out the newcomers to the Top 10 is Lost Frequencies’ magnetic “Recognise” featuring vocalist Flynn and rising 12-10.

Closing in on the Top 10, with no surprise, is the progressive and experimental “Coyote” from L.A.’s Mako, zipping up the chart 17-11.  This one draws you in with each listen so don’t miss it.

Halifax’s Famba just signed to Sony Canada proper, and he’s on his second radio hit for them.  Easily accessible to dance clubs in its Dallerium remix above is “Swear To God”, advancing 19-12.

Timmy Trumpet’s new anthem “World At Our Feet” finds itself soaring 23-15 in its second appearance.

“Adore You” by Jessie Ware is a quiet, sexy, funky grower and it moves up 22-17.

Taking its cue from a lot of 90’s pop and hip hop music is “We Found Love” by Canada’s Sultan + Shepard who collaborate with Showtek for this reboot of the Heavy D. & The Boyz hit.  It climbs 26-18.

They say some DJ’s don’t dance but in the video for his song “Atypical”, you’ll find Manila Killa busting some impressive moves.  Led by the vocals of GiGi, “Atypical” rises 25-19 culled from Manila Killa’s 1993 release.

The first newcomer is by recent Oscar and Grammy Award winner Mark Ronson who brings along Grammy-winner YEBBA for one of three songs on his album Late Night Feelings.  The sensational “Don’t Leave Me Lonely” arrives on the chart at #23.  Somehow it’s only Mark’s second entry on the chart, the first being “Valerie” with Amy Winehouse in 2007.  YEBBA’s previous 2017 “Evergreen” got to #4, and I expect similar things from “Lonely”.

Next up is the debut entry for Switzerland’s Luca Hänni, who was so fun and engaging with his Eurovision performances with “She Got Me” arriving at #25.  The song ranked 4th overall in Eurovision and deserves to be a worldwide smash.  It’s pretty darned irresistible.

The third new entry of the week at #27 belongs to French producer Nick Peters with a lyrical dance gem in “Where Did You Go”, featuring UK vocalist Jamie Grey.  Nick’s visited the chart before, in 2017 with “No Love In Brooklyn” getting to #4 in partnership with Frank Pierce and Scott Vega.

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 🙂

 

 

 

#BILLCSTop30 #562 – May 27/19

Some innovative and entertaining songs make their debuts this week.  One artist continues to find himself with two songs at a time on the chart, while another appears on the chart – twice – for the first time in over 5 years.  And they both join another artist who has one song on the rise and one which peaked in the Top 5 a few weeks ago.

But first the Top 10, in which we find two songs snug comfortably at the top 🙂

It’s “White Lies” that reigns supreme for a second week for German/UK producers M-22 and featuring the songwriting talents and uncredited vocal of British singer A*M*E.  It kind of goes hand in hand, for me anyway, with Cedric Gervais’ disco edit of “Good Things” in collaboration with Just Kiddin and singer Kyan, which stays at #2.

A third frenetic house track joins the top two to keep you dancing away.  “Enlighten Me” is by the fine Dutchmen that are DubVision and SYZZ, and it soars 8-3.  They bypass Mahalo and MŌZ who remain at #4 with the deep house of “Go Ahead”, as well as “Sucker” by The Jonas Brothers, which still climbs 7-5.  Although Joe Jonas found himself in the Top 5 previously as a solo singer with “Make You Mine” (#3, from his underappreciated Fastlife album) in 2012, and again with DNCE with “Cake By The Ocean” (#2) in 2015, I don’t think I ever fathomed the Jonasei gracing the upper reaches!

Every release by MAX that has hit my chart has made the Top 10, and “Love Me Less”, featuring Quinn XCII, rises 10-7.  Mokita’s third entry on the chart becomes his second Top 10 hit.  The Nashville singer/songwriter moves up 11-9 with “Kiss And Tell” as “London” tumbles to #15 after peaking at #3.  The second newcomer to the Top 10 is “Wild” by German producer Final DJs and featuring Bright Light Bright Light on vocals.  “Wild” moves up 13-10 and becomes Bright Light Bright Light’s 17th Top 10 entry!

Three other recent entries are advancing well on the chart.  French producer Kidswaste’s delightful “Sleeping Pills” featuring vocalist KOLE climbs 21-16, and right behind is progressive electronica from L.A.’s Mako with “Coyote” moving up 23-17.  The fastest riser on the chart, however, is “Swear To God” by Canadian producer Famba, which is making short work of the chart by leaping 27-19.  It’s also Famba’s second Canadian radio hit following “Wish You Well” (featuring Trove).

It’s definitely an interesting chart for debuts.  Although he continues to move up at #13 with “Crashing” (featuring Bahari), the prolific Illenium has singer/songwriter Jon Bellion on deck this time for the quite amazing and thoughtful “Good Things Fall Apart”, which makes an impressive debut at #20.  Then there’s Timmy Trumpet’s commanding “World At Our Feet” which becomes the Australian producer’s first entry on this chart at #23.  

And last but not least, there are Dutch producers, the brothers Showtek.  This is the first time that Showtek has appeared on the chart since 2014, when “Cannonball (Earthquake)”, with Italian producer Justin Prime and US vocalist Matthew Koma, went to #1.  They are back two-fold, first at #26 with Canada’s own Sultan + Shepard bowing for the first time on the chart with “We Found Love”, an update of “Now That We Found Love”, a huge 90’s hit for Heavy D. & The Boyz, originally recorded in 1979 by reggae band Third World.  And then there’s the story of remixing a fun 4 year old song – but when a remix by A-Trak is among them you know it’s going to be great.  Showtek and vocalist Leon Sherman’s “Listen To Your Momma” arrives at #28, and A-Trak’s is one of five remixes on the EP.

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 🙂

 

Let the retro vibes of “We Found Love” by @SultanShepard x @Showtek catch you by surprise

SULTAN + SHEPARD x SHOWTEK, “We Found Love”

First off, it’s NOT a remake of the Calvin Harris/Rihanna collaboration.  L.A.-based Canadians Sultan + Shepard and Dutch producers Showtek are in it for the win with their fine choice of song to adapt as “We Found Love”.  Covered in 1991 by Heavy D. & The Boyz, “Now That We Found Love” has been a humdinger since it was originally released as a pop/reggae gem in 1979 by Third World.  Our creative producers, who are all on a solid roll of releases right now, mix in some funky 90’s beats that will quickly make you think Naughty By Nature for an ear-catching mix that will instantly command attention for both dance club DJ’s and dance radio shows.  

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.

 

 

“American Dream” is a smoking new instrumental from @SultanShepard – with a backstory

SULTAN + SHEPARD, “American Dream”

“American Dream” marks the return of L.A. based Canadian duo Sultan + Shepard this time through Armada.  It’s an alternately rollicking and sultry instrumental that draws its inspiration, and some samples, from the main theme of the movie “American Beauty”.  It’s a perfect fit for clubs, with quiet, understated moments taking turns with some really fluid and dirty synth work.  Sultan + Shepard have always been known for creative, outside-of-the-box originals and remixes during this decade that have attracted collaborations with the likes of Nadia Ali, Taryn Manning (with a #1 Billboard club chart hit, “Send Me Your Love”), Tiësto, Fedde LeGrand, and Dillon Francis, which have also resulted in nominations for both Grammy Awards (remixing Bruno Mars’ “Locked Out Of Heaven”) and Juno Awards (their collaboration with Nadia, “Almost Home”).  If this is just the start of what Sultan + Shepard are bringing us in 2019, then watch out!

Published in: on February 2, 2019 at 11:37 pm  Leave a Comment  
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