Yesterday LA based producer, Falcons dropped his debut EP, BirdCall. This talented beat maker already has a grip of super dope remixes and originals on his soundcloud, most with significant attention, so this release definitely had some anticipation behind it, especially after he put the four track EP up for streaming a couple weeks ago.
I’m absolutely loving this EP. Falcons rocks a really unique style, merging club like energy and a soulful jazzy aesthetic with hot hip hop beats. There’s a consistent bouncyness throughout the EP that I’m really feeling, beginning with the first song, “Falcon Eye (Reprise)”, a buttery, flowy beat, as sexy as it is flossy, super reminiscent of late 90’s-early 2000’s R&B vibes but with more futuristic elements. The second track, “Be Quiet” is probably the most clubby of the bunch with whispering samples and bubbly synths laid on a way hyphy beat. Next we have “Cell”, a deliciously smooth beat and probably my favorite of the release. The EP finishes off with the ultra fresh, “2me”, in which he perfectly incorporates vocals from one of my favorite songs ever (hint: “he belongs to mee”). All in all, a well made, fun, and flavorful release that I’m stoked to support. Killer album art too.
I could imagine this is a weird time for hip hop producers. There is a lot of really bad and somewhat shallow productions circulating the internet and freaking like spewing out of DJ’s sets all over the country, many created by producers that have taken a gander at this whole trap movement without recognizing the wide range of elements that make a trap-esque hip hop beat an actual good piece of music. It’s producers like Falcons and the whole crew over at my new favorite label,HW&W, that keep this style so fresh and interesting for me. Falcons covers all the bases in this EP, showcasing both his advanced skills and personal taste. I’ve got a feeling this one is going to be huge on the dancefloors this winter and I look forward to getting really, really down to it.
Welcome to a place filled with endless possibilities– welcome to Art Outside. I say “endless possibilities” because of the immense amount of creativity and inspiration I felt and witnessed this October weekend. The seventh annual music and arts festival that was hosted by Art Seen Alliance took place on October 18th-21st 2013 at Apache Pass, TX – about an hour drive outside of the nation’s music capitol –Austin, Texas. Alongside music and art, other features included: onstage performances, yoga, workshops, and camping, which brought light to this collaborative effort of like-minded individuals.
One of my favorite aspects of this year’s musical lineup was its showcase of a wide variety of musical genres! Walking through the grounds of this family-friendly gathering, my ear-pineal was in for a treat. Dispersed over three stages (The Main Stage, The Dome, and Folk stage) were the sounds of folk, psychedellic, funk, glitch, down tempo, and bass – all which encompassed a soulful approach. Musical acts included both local and national acts such as: Bluetech, Bird of Prey, Brede, Desert Dwellers, Earphunk, Erika Maassen, Flying Balalaika Brothers, Happy Happy James, Ishi, Itchy-O, Kayla scintilla, Kyle Hollingsworth Band, Love & Light, Luminaries, Michael Garfield, Nadis Warriors, One4All, Psymbionic, The Fungineers, The Polish Ambassador, Thriftworks, Wildlight, Zoogma and tons more!
The art installations surrounding the entire campsite were remarkable. There was literally Art Outside. Some favorites included “The Cathedral of Celestial Mathgic”, -an interactive mathematical musical experience like none other designated as the Cafe Portal for Burning Man 2013 and created to expand your mind. Also displayed was visual artist Jason Smith’s (aka Bild ∞D’s, a member of ‘Third Coast Visions’- a collective of live artists) 9-foot watermelon tourmaline installation, which triggered lighting by an RGB LED, creating interchangeable coloring throughout the weekend. Other creative visual artists collaborating throughout the fest included the names of Tourmaline Todd, Miranda Lewis, Todd Bot, Chance Roberts, Michael Garfield, and Erin Guthrie. These Austinite artists live-painted throughout the event -some having their personal art displayed throughout the fest and/or having their art featured in an air art open gallery that was built by the Main Stage.
Aside the music, visuals, and décor, there was more yumminess in store: food and beverages. Favorite meals of mine were the mouth-watering savory and sweet crepes. One could also find themselves devouring on organic and luscious nourishment such as homemade chocolate smoothies, gyros, fruit, veggie meals and other treats. One sweet new feature at this year’s Art Outside fest was a Tea House, which featured rugs for lounging, a very peaceful environment featuring mind-blowing artwork.
I walked out of ArtOutside feeling inspired and rejuvenated. It’s like everyone I interacted with during the fest was feeding off of each other, communicating on another level, and growing together with collaboration. I definitely recommend this local festival to anyone and everyone of all ages, all of my out-of-staters. Come get down in downtown Texas and come experience an intimate setting full of fun, creativity, friends, and talent…but be sure to bring your own piece of the puzzle. Thank you Warren McKinney and the whole Art Seen Alliance crew!
**Check out what some of the visual artist’s at this year’s Art Outside had to say!
“Art Outside is an artist’s paradise, which provides free range to paint whatever, wherever and whenever. It invites patrons to reflect and participate in the experience of the weekend.” -Tourmaline Todd
“It’s rare to feel so at home at a festival but AO really makes you feel like you just don’t want to leave. My favorite part, honestly, was the people –the artists and the guests. They were the most beautiful souls I’ve had the pleasure of co-creating with in a great while (since last year’s AO)…I could go on tirelessly about how brilliant all of the visual art was that I saw on display throughout the grounds and especially inside the gallery. In the meantime, I’ve noticed a resurgence of inspiration and motivation from myself and fellow artists of wanting to prolong the feeling that we shared at AO. I’m sure I speak for many of us when I say that Art Outside was, in fact, a transformational event.” -Todd Bot
“Art Outside 2012 was the first time I had ever built an installation. I went into it feeling very unsure and apprehensive, wondering if I even had any business doing it at all. I left AO feeling very different. I was so welcomed as a new artist and inspired by literally everything, that I couldn’t wait to work harder to be able to contribute more to this electric, eclectic environment. I still feel this urge today and it drives what I do artistically. I adore Art Outside for giving me this… but the best part is… this year.. I was given the pleasure of witnessing the same confidence and inspiration being sown into countless others, and I am beyond proud to be a part of it all. Art on my friends. Art on.” –Jason Smith
“Art for me is all about those feel good endorphins you release when you are doing something that is creative and unique. Laying down colors, images, and patterns that represent my day and night. Dreams are what really gets me going creatively. I juxtapose my inspirations from various artists such as Alphonse Mucha and Gustav Klimt, images I photograph on hikes, and patterns from fabrics that I have collected either physically or digitally. I have chosen painting as a medium because you can even get up to your elbows in it if you need to and really feel the energy. Get messy. Show your process. Cover it up. It’s me that I’m painting in one way or the next. It’s a window. I don’t even know what it means most of the time. And that’s life.” – Miranda Lewis
“I make art because it’s the only thing that feels right, it connects me to things I cant begin to describe in words; sometimes it even looks good and can take other people on the journey with me. There is something to be said in the power of making something with your hands, and then sharing that experience with people; it dissolves barriers and allows you to connect in a very personal way. It’s the only way I know how to open my heart to people, in all honesty. I am beyond blessed with the company I get to share life with, and my art is my offering to all of them; it’s an attempt to raise the vibrations of everyone involved and to help us grow into the best humans we can be.” – Chance Roberts
Introducing the newest member to the AfroMonk.com staff, Sofia!
She’s a good friend of mine from Texas that I totally adore. Sofia is one of those people who will always bring a smile to your face no matter how terrible of a day you’ve had. She has tons of energy and highly motivated. You can find her in Austin, Texas raging all the EDM parties.
Sofia is a co-owner of Yatra Productions. They are local to Austin as well as Colorado. This past year they held a small festival called ALLOVEUS which showcased tons of incredible talent and art. They have tons of plans for the future and if you’re local to Texas be sure to reach out to her.
I think Sofia will added diversity to the website as her musical taste aligns with the overall vibe. She is also always pushing fresh new bands and producers that are up and coming. I haven’t kept my ear to the ground as much and think she’ll be a valuable addition to the team as she expands her experience as an event promoter.
I’m not going to hide the fact that the website has sort of died off and a big reason is due to the fact that I don’t write as much. To be honest I’m ready to retire from the blog. There are lots of projects I’m working on as well as focusing on my career. Many close friends have been reaching out to me for reviews and coverage but I’m going to say this is the perfect opportunity to reach out to Sofia and the rest of the team.
This is also a call to writers who are interested in contributing to the website. Ideally I’d love someone who writes consistently. There are lots of artist who I’m still in contact with and will push their music to you for review. This does mean access to loads of awesome music before it’s released. Please leave a comment or e-mail one of the lovely women who currently write for the site (I’m hoping this gets this more motivated as well) =D
I also want to thank everyone who has supported and been a follower of this website. It’s incredible how much this website transformed my life. Thank you for reading and listening <3
I was so very pleasantly surprised upon listening to KOAN Sound & Asa’s new release on OWSLA, Sanctuary. The collaboration between KOAN Sound and Asa is genius; by coming together these guys were really able to reach an enhanced level of sound. These guys are taking steps in the right direction…. never before have I seen such a positive evolution from hard-hitting bass to softer, more melodic soundscapes.
When I first listened to Sanctuary pretty much sat there, mouth agape in wonder. I later listened again and soaked in the complexities and beauty of this album. The chill factor of this release is undeniable. It is masterfully produced with sophisticated sound design, exquisite melodies, and thoughtful sampling. You can tell that the album is inspired and from the heart; it tells a story and does indeed serve as a “sanctuary” from the grip of day-to-day life. Kick back and give this release a listen all the way through and notice the sensations and thoughts it evokes in you. The album artwork for this release is also stunning and very well done; it portrays the ethereal state, void of ego, that one may feel while allowing oneself to let go and free the mind.
I’m such an Omega fan boy. This guy is the mad scientist of our community. The amount of talent and knowledge he has is incredible. Chris is also one of the most loving humans I’ve met. The music he puts out is HUGE and gets quite intense compared to what I’m use to listening too. What’s also interesting is how gnarly his music can be but he’s in full control and sometimes you can hear his giddy laugh during his sets. It’s almost as if Omega has this dark evil nature but his true nature is almost shy by how massive his sound comes off.
Omega is by no means a new kid on the block either. He has be an integral part of the rising Colorado electronic music scene. You might not see him out as often but don’t worry he’s working inside his lab creating and mastering tunes. One thing that many people don’t know about yet is his project YuYu (1/2 Omega, 1/2 Cualli). If you’re not that into these aggressive massive basslines and live more for the funk you’ve got to keep your ears out for the YuYu material. It’s more along the lines of live instrumentation. You’ll have to hear and see it to understand.
You don’t usually find such explosive dubstep on this blog but I have nothing but respect and love for my friend, Omega. Check this out and support music. Major shout outs to UnMess for such amazing album art on this one!
Found some really great tracks this week that I’d love to share with you all. There is constantly amazing new music being released, but when searching this past week these four tracks stuck out to me admist the hundreds. Hope you enjoy.
Lovers of downtempo will already be familiar with San Francisco producer, Tycho. His soft, pensive sound is well represented in this track from his next release. Pulling tough at the heart strings, this guitar heavy creation is a gorgeous, emotional, and comforting song. Paired with the always stunning album artwork by Tycho himself, this release is sure to be a heart melter.
Chris Brown- Till I Die (LabRat and Jamburglar remix)
Vibey as f*ck remix of Chris brown’s “Till I Die” done by California producers, LabRat and Jamburglar. This track rocks a dynamic combination of heavy gangsterism and smooth hip hop vibes. The majority of the tune is lively and pleasant, but the switch up to a heavyier flavor in the middle works really well and would make this a great song to drop on the dancefloor.
This man can do no wrong. Kaytranada is one of the hottest beat producers around right now and I am consistently impressed with the music he’s releasing. This new track was released today in a two song EP along side the also killer beat, “At All”. Huge bass lays the groundwork for this expressive and luxuriously saucy beat. So.Much.Steez.
And my favorite: The Lion Kngs-Down To The Garden
Such a dope track. I really love this. The arrangement is interesting and captivating. I really dig the drums*those snare rollssss*, choice of sounds, vocals, and the production quality, although admittedly a little distorted through soundcloud, is top notch. It’s got a bit of an eerie feel to it, making it soo perfect for this time of year. Start to finish, this super smooth and dynamic track really hits the sweet spot for me and I can not stop listening to it. Check it out for yourself. Plus it’s a free download through their facebook!
Happy Thursday everyone! I absolutely love this time of year for music! I hope fall is treating you well and you are revelling in all the amazing music being dropped left and right. Keep it real, readers.
I’m not sure why I haven’t checked out Globular before… man was I missing out! This guy’s music is stellar. From Bristol, UK, you can just tell that this guy puts an immense amount of energy into making his detailed exotic sounds. It’s feel-good music that seems to offer energy and healing power as you listen. His sounds are very organic and have a soothing, natural flow, yet are delightfully psychedelic and drippy. It’s kind of like very controlled chaos in the best way possible. This music invokes a sense of tribal roots blended oh so nicely with electronica that is so on point. If you’re into Ott, I have no doubt in my mind that you’ll enjoy Globular’s tunes. His most recent release, Magnitudes of Order (out September 28) takes you on an intricate journey through the cosmos and back; it’s great for easy listening while kicking back or road tripping. I hope that this guy will tour in the states sometime soon… I believe that he would be very well received by our music and art community!
From the very first note, Whoa! by Alizzz had me completely captivated. Been sitting on this one for a little bit now and am definitely excited to share this with all you people out there. The EP is a combination of high energy, epic, and emotional maximalism with sultry, heart string pulling r&b vibes. I’m personally totally obsessed with this shift towards a futuristic r&b renaissance that’s become so prevalent in the beat and bass music scene recently, so electronic music in this style has been taking up pretty much all of my time in the last year (as you can probably tell from my posts on the site). The energy throughout the EP is blissed out and passionate, totally winning me over with it’s dynamic flavor and gorgeous synth work.
Barcelona based Alizzz as well as the label releasing the EP, Arkestra Discos, were completely new names to me when I came across this EP, but I was instantly impressed with his obvious production skills and melodic, highly musical technique. Each track on the EP is dynamic and interesting, ranging in style and tempos, but working harmoniously to create an atmospheric and vivid listening experience. It’s safe to say, I’m obsessed.
The Originalz have been crushing it lately. Hailing from Sebastopol, CA, this talented duo keeps shit fresh and fun! This summer they have been popping up on festival lineups left and right and I have to say that it’s much deserved; I have had the pleasure of catching them multiple times live and they give off an incredible radiant energy. There’s never a dull moment in a performance by The Originalz… every time I have seen them everyone is getting DOWN and dirty. Having kicked it with them on a few occasions, I have to say that both Troy and Derek are charming, super chill dudes. They’re spreading just the right love and positive energy that our bass community thrives upon. Catch them next at Trill God Campout in Ashland, Oregon next weekend (September 27-30), which looks to be off the chain!
The Originalz’ newest release, Get Lucid, out on Gravitas Recordings, is like a cosmic journey through a seamless soundscape. I would highly recommend checking out and downloading this stellar release (name your own price). If you give your eyes a rest and let go it can actually evoke a sense of lucid dreaming (and the radical album artwork doesn’t hurt with that). I am a sucker for melodic innovative beats and these guys deliver that along with slapping gangsta bass, futuristic glitch, and sultry frequencies. Their tunes will satisfy music lovers across the board, with influences ranging from hip hop to purple. Their sound is full and exuberant. They recently did a remix for my boy SELBY and it turned out to be quite delicious! I actually can’t seem to get it out of my head. Their newest track, Holla’, is fire as well! The Originalz are only going upwards with their dope beats, killer performances, and authentic personalities… watch out for these guys!