For only being his first official single, Stephen Swartz’ new track really brings a lot to the table. If you’re a fan of melodic dubstep (think Adventure Club), “Bullet Train” will probably hit home for you with it’s sweeping chords and alluring vocals from Joni Fatora that carry the track for a gritty, yet soothing ride. Shout out to Vickie for the tip on this one.
Stephen Swartz – Bullet Train (feat. Joni Fatora) | iTunes
Following a really strong effort from The M Machine, Passion Pit’s “Take A Walk” receives some more official remix treatment from “European sex music” specialist BURNS. The percussion in his SFTCR version are what immediately stand out, but the overall atmospheric and distorted nature (think Clams Casino meets Star Slinger) of the mix is what you’ll end up taking away. Good luck picking a favorite between the BURNS, The M Machine, and Passion Pit mixes, and don’t forget Gossamer comes out July 24th.
Passion Pit – Take A Walk (BURNS’ SFTCR VERSION) | Download
Composed of emcees Yago Hunt-Laudi and Danny O’Neill, and backed by production from Pete Ferrini, FAM (For All Mankind) is a three-headed “R&B-infused alternative hip-hop” group based in DC. After releasing a debut mixtape some 8 months ago, the trio is back at it with an official video for their track, “Fiberglass Mic.”
What stood out to me was the way the visuals really embody the style and direction they were going for in the song. Taking on this classy, retro, cigarette-smoking vibe, “Fiberglass Mic” is like something straight out of a Heineken commercial, and is a mature change of pace from what you may be accustomed to with up and coming college artists.
You can grab a free download through the link below, and look out for new 10 track project from FAM set for a late summer/early fall release.
FAM – Fiberglass Mic | Download
Coming as the third official single off D-WHY’s upcoming Don’t Flatter Yourself mixtape, “Kill Me Now” recruits recent Roc-Nation signee Casey Veggies for a feature verse behind production handled by me & the homie. The new track follows supreme music videos for the first two singles, “Macchiato Music” and “We Don’t Know,” and while it doesn’t take away from my overall hype regarding the mixtape, I’m not so sure it exceeds the quality of those first two offerings. Regardless, give “Kill Me Now” a listen below and expect an update on the Don’t Flatter Yourself release date within the week.
D-WHY feat. Casey Veggies – Kill Me Now (prod. by me & the homie) | Download
[Premiered on HYPETRAK]
Deadmau5 has undeniably and almost single-handedly caused an absolute riot surrounding dance music recently. Coming in conjunction with his Rolling Stone cover spot, Zimmerman posted an article/rant on his Tumblr titled, “we all hit play.,” explaining how (in his opinion at least) the modern “DJ” isn’t quite as tough a job as some people make it out to be.
I think given about 1 hour of instruction, anyone with minimal knowledge of ableton and music tech in general could DO what im doing at a deadmau5 concert.
He goes on to admit he has no problem with simply “hitting a spacebar” for his “unhooked” sets, and calls out anyone who claims to be “doing something special outside of a studio environment, when you’re not.” As you could imagine, this caused some dispute among a few of dance music’s biggest artists like A-Trak and Skrillex, who both were quick to give their responses via Twitter.
Yesterday, Bassnectar decided to join the fray by indirectly criticizing “deadmouse” on Twitter and by posting his own article titled, “Pushing Buttons or Pushing Boundries,” which gives a polar opposite take on what is actually going on behind the DJ decks.
So, what do I make of the whole thing? In today’s evolving and rapidly growing “EDM” scene, fans are growing wiser, expecting more authenticity, and no longer settling for the bare minimum from their beloved artists. That said, no matter if you’re the casual fan or technical addict, it all comes down to the effect the music has on the listener. As I said in my post for the new Sound Is Style, music is personal, and makes an infinite number of different emotional connections depending on the individual. DJs and producers simply don’t have to please everyone, despite what the mainstream “EDM” mogul might say. If you don’t like one guy’s sound, or how another guy puts together a live set, fine! There are plenty of other artists out there, it’s just a matter of finding one that hits home with you. In the end, dance music should boil down to having a good time, letting go, and getting lost in the sound. Nothing else.
On another note, the whole controversy has spurred a few other interesting secondhand arguments, probably best explained by the recent editorial on Dancing Astronaut regarding the selling out of big time artists. I’m not going to get into that whole debate here, but you can read all about it and check out another good read on Hot Water Inc that gives a littler more aged perspective.
It’s kind of ironic that amidst all the craziness, Deadmau5 dropped off the The Veldt EP on Monday along with the title track’s official video. Packed with four tracks, it’s got something for everyone, including the 11 minute epic that is “The Veldt,” Freeform Five’s sleeper remix, the club friendly Tommy Trash version, or even the hip hop infused “Failbait” featuring Cypress Hill. Despite not seeing eye to eye with the Joel on some of his recent irks, I can’t dispute the quality of this EP, which helps shift the focus from his controversial opinion back to the music itself.
You can watch the beautiful short story-based video for “The Veldt” below, as well as download the entire EP from iTunes.
Deadmau5 – The Veldt EP | iTunes
September 11th is set up to be a huge day in the music world. Not only is A$AP Rocky‘s potentially game-changing debut LiveLoveA$AP album set to release on that day, but now Dave Matthews Band of all artists has scheduled their brand new studio album, Away From The World, for that day as well.
For the second offering off the new project, we get “Mercy” (not to be confused with “Mercy“), which presents a sound that will probably give you chills if you’re one of those people who goes to a Dave concert every summer. About a month ago the group put up “Gaucho,” which I’ve thrown in below, so give them both a spin and pre-order Away From The World here if you like. What’s a summer without some DMB anyway?
Dave Matthews Band – Mercy | Stream Only
Dave Matthews Band – Gaucho | Stream Only