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
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.
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.
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!
Sometimes I listen to an album way too much. Like waaaay too much. Case in point, Hecka’s The Cheese (although at the time it was released under the creator’s most notable moniker, Grimblee, he has changed it to Hecka since then). I listened to that EP so much last summer that my friends would walk into my house and be like “oh, you’re listening to Grimblee…again”. I never got sick of it and I still listen to every song on it pretty regularly. I was kind of amazed by the release since I was quite familiar with Grimblee as a producer and although I held him in very high regards skill wise, I’m not super into heavy dubstep, so therefore I wasn’t super into his music. But after exploring the work he has done under Hecka, I am tempted to go back to his older stuff and re-examine it, because obviously his range is really impressive and his set I saw at Infrasound a few weeks ago was a ton of fun.
Hecka’s music is influenced by an aesthetic I have been alluding to a lot in my posts recently. It’s a sound I am obsessed with and seek out passionately. Soulful and retro, heavy in melody and grandiose, it’s big, it trots on the border of epic and cool versus coked out and cheesy, but his skill and overall high quality taste keeps it from slipping too far the wrong way (although I’d totally be lying if I said I’m not down for the coked out cheese music :p I just know it’s not everyone’s forte). You can also hear some serious Juke and Garage influence in the drums, making it a hypnotizing and interesting listen. So far he’s released two albums under Hecka -Personal Thoughts and now, The Cheese, both for free download, both amazing. Plus I’ve been loving every track on his soundcloud. All around fun and dance floor ready stuff, I recommend it to anyone looking for some fresh and unique vibed out summer beats. Sounds even better when played outside in the sunshine!
Pretty Lights has not released a full album for two years now. The renown sampled based artist has been hard at work on this new upcoming album, A Color Map of the Sun. Derek Vincent Smith released his documentary that explains how the album was put together. I just finished watching it and completely blown away by the extensive process that went into this album. I would say going forward it would be wrong to call Pretty Lights a sample based producer. Pretty Lights has transformed into a music composer with this album. Contrary to his original process of sampling vinyl records he gathered an orchestra of musicians to record what he had in his head and then pressed it all to vinyl. The complete album was recorded and done in analogue. The synthesis elements of the album were all done with modulators and analogue sounds, NOT digital. The recordings were done on tape and then pressed to vinyl. The end result was a custom crate of vinyl that was created for Derek to use while arranging and piecing together all the recordings into what is the final album.
This past week-end I spent it in Colorado for Sonic Bloom. I had the opportunity to talk to many predominate musicians and producers while at the festival. One of the main questions I asked many of them was where music is going next… Every musician I spoke to mentioned the hybridization of live instruments mixed with the electronic sound. The main artist that was mentioned in every conversation was Pretty Lights and what he was doing with this new album, A Color Map of the Sun.
I believe that if anyone ever doubted Pretty Lights and his future should really think about saying those words… Derek has created a master piece and we haven’t even heard the completed work yet. This album will set the bar for the future. Everyone speaks of this new era of revitalizing the old sounds of soul, jazz, funk, etc… with electronic production. Pretty Lights has done just that and has recorded everything from scratch to the vocals, instruments, and synthesis. We are now in 2013 and Pretty Lights A Color Map of the Sun will become a staple of electronic music for our generation.
Wow… Emissions! I haven’t stopped beaming since I left Belden Town. Still vibing off of that incredible weekend! It was seriously soul melting, mind bending goodness…. the kind of soul melting wherein a massive pot of glistening liquid gold is created from radiant auras fusing together as one. I could feel everyone’s true essences around me. Throughout the festival the stoke was so high everywhere you looked. Shenanigans, good cheer, and beauty were all breathed into Belden that weekend. Actually, I think our spirits still resonate in the woods there.
Since Emissions I still daydream of wandering aimlessly throughout the grounds… under lovely tree arches and into the camp of some gnomes or wood pixies or river goddesses, along the flowing water where lovers lie in hammocks, through galleries of awe-inspiring four-dimensional artwork, to a bumpin’ renegade cabin party, through the marketplace with masters of artisan craft, to the beautifully made stages laced with body thwomping bass, to the everclear river waters with friends galore on floaties. Never a dull moment in that place. One thing I really loved about Emissions was observing (well… partaking in rather) the juxtaposition of day and night. One moment it was pleasantly hot and we were all frolicking in the icy yet refreshing river… the next it was dark so the freaks and night wolves came out to play and howl at the moon. The collection of people was as amusing as it was inspiring. We’ve got grungy gremlin types who are looking for trouble, giggling day trippers sipping on mimosas, elder wanderers with wisdom etched into the wrinkles in their skin, straight ragers doing beer bongs on rafts, gorgeous wood nymph ladies dancing, artists seeking a canvas for their next masterpiece, and a plethora of other characters. And the beauty of it is that I never witnessed any sort of clash between these vastly different individuals; we came together as one in harmony and appreciation for life and bass. Weekend warriors unite.
The performers and PK Sound systems were ON PAR. I will admit that I can be picky with my music and am not one to hesitate to express when I’m not really digging something. I don’t think that happened once throughout Emissions… there wasn’t a moment where I wasn’t feeling the groove of the music and amazing people surrounding me! I guess that’s what happens when you bring the vital forces of the west coast bass music scene together as one in collaboration and manifestation. I know that I as well as every other participant wholeheartedly recognize and appreciate what went down that weekend!
Big ups to Camp Question Mark, PK Sound, all of those who worked hard to make the weekend what it was, and especially to the bass family for joining in for an unforgettable time. Oh, and also to the guy who acquired a loving pet squirrel while on acid during The Polish Ambassador’s set. Too good not to mention.
Desto has been one of my favorite producers for quite awhile now. Whenever I get the chance I’ll sneak in No Sleep into my set. He has been releasing singles and EPs for around 5 years now. He hasn’t released a LP since his debut as Desto. June 10th 2013 is the official release date for Desto’s first LP, Emptier Streets, on Rwina Records. It makes a lot of sense that Rwina is the label of choice for this album. It totally has that unique style and sound that all their artist bring to the table.
The trap movement has taken over but their are still a grip of producers who are making this atmospheric space crunk sound and Desto is one of them. The sound design and spacey feel to his sound makes for quite an enjoyable auditory experience. I will say that Emptier Streets reminds me a lot of Eprom’s Metahuman. It’s the closest thing that sounds remotely close to this release. Considering that Metahuman is considered by many as one of the better albums of 2012, you could say this is one of the best of 2013.
Be sure to pre-order this one on vinyl! As a person who strictly only orders LP’s lately. This one is an instant buy. Big ups to Desto on this one and for Rwina for pushing the bar further and further!