"I Have Other Things To Do" - June 2014 Chart
1. 5 Feet - Nick Monaco [Dirtybird]
Love this unabashedly groovy number from bass-turned-funk aficionado Nick Monaco, 5 Feet is one of those perfect transitional songs between many different genres.
2. Rihanna (ft. Noonie Bao) - Clean Bandit [Warner]
From the same group that gave us the hugely popular ‘Rather Be’, Clean Bandit gives us the slower, more chilled out ‘Rihanna' number. The b-side to their single Dust Clears, I find that Rihanna is really unappreciated; and you know that mean a lot coming from me. It may be though that I’m a TOTAL sucker for anything with oriental strings.
3. Ligament - Frits Wentink [Heist]
Everyone knows that Frits is my favourite producer around at the moment. I am totally obsessed with his completely unique variety of wonky, sampled deep house, and Ligament - his latest venture on Detroit Swindle’s stamp Heist - is no exception to the rule. Totally random and different, the fusion of heavy kicks and heavily effected string samples makes for a truly unheard track.
4. Oil Spill - Huxley [AUS]
Ac frequenter of Will Saul’s AUS imprint, Huxley brings another dark, deep and heavy house track as a follow up to his Long Summer Night EP from only a few months ago. Oil Spill is built around a hard-hitting cavernously reverbed kick drum that weaves around through percussions and DnB inspired synths, but that track never seems too cluttered or too full.
05. Sometimes - Title [Cosmonostro]
…And in that moment, Flume became an amateur of the game. Title’s cleverly eclectic and impeccably groovy Sometimes is one of those perfect beat tracks that I wouldn’t change in a second and now returning to listening to Flume, it leaves me disappointed!
30 Jun 2014 @ 02:44PM /
Top Wax ‘B-Sides Do It Better’ : February 2014
01. Archive 01 / Realtime MIDLAND [Graded, GRD001]
A1 : Archive 01
An unabashedly experimental track that still manages to sound 100% current, Archive 01 is an intense mix of tribal drums and reverberated vocal cuts tied together with a filtered sub-bass. Around the half-way point into this techno monster arrives a vintage synth sound which happens to mesh seemlessly with the plethora of seemingly irrational sounds. 6/10
B1 : Realtime
To be 100% honest, I bought this record for the absolutely exceptional B-side, Realtime. I am and always will be a fan of strange rhythms, so the syncopated kick-snare at the end of every fourth bar certainly drew me in to be captured by the intricate production of this masterpiece. The vocal cuts - as simple as the grunts may be - manage to maintain the infectious groove that the jelly-wobble bassline injects. 10/10
02. 816 To Nunhead CHAOS IN THE CBD [Amadeus, AMA012]
A1 : 816 To Nunhead
A painfully groovy sampled house track, 816 To Nunhead shows the lighter, dancier side of Chaos In The CBD’s latest work. An acceptable tangent to the moody deep house that the brothers have become known for, 816 To Nunhead to begin to feel very familiar a short way along but a great vocal break allow you to rewind and enjoy the vibes that are so summery you can almost taste the flies and feel the sunburn. 6/10
B1 : 78 To Stanley Bay
It seems this review set is going to be a showcase of B-Sides that outshine their forebearer! 78 To Stanley Bay is literally everything that I could possibly ask for in a deep house track. Filtered, dreamy chords and dirty, white-washed hats begin the journey before being drowned in the Mariana Trench level depths, plunged by the piano chords and mellow trumpets. I would change nothing at all about this track, it is the definition of perfection. 10/10
03. Pressured ADESSE VERSIONS [Make Love In Public Spaces, LIPS001]
A1/2. Pressured / (Instrumental)
A very deep 909-driven house track, Pressured makes exceptional use of the Jhelisa acapella to make a really bumping house track. The vocals are the main selling point of this A-side so the main redeeming quality of the instrumental is the warping deep pad that works it’s way into the mix. 5.5/10
Jazz-inspired house at it’s absolute best. All the live and sampled elements compliment each each to the T, and as the mix changes to include extra elements such as the sparkling keys and the soft saxophone it becomes clear that Modal is one the best vinyl only tracks of the year. 10/10
20 Feb 2014 @ 11:36AM /
TAGGED AS: chart vinyl House meano
Chemistry Chart : October 2013
01. Nightmode (Pedestrian Remix) - Kry Wolf [Food Music]
Kry Wolf were definitely one of the artists that first got me interested in UK Garage and bass music with their own releases on their label Sounds Of Sumo. Because of this I certainly have a soft spot for any of their new tunes when they appear and this was certainly the case with their new EP on their second label (with Shadow Child) Food Music. Along with the originals - Nightmode and U Like - there is THAT remix. Yes, it’s the masterful perfection that is the bass heavy remix from UK duo Pedestrian.
This remix is fraught with elements that will certainly intrigue any listener. For me, the noisy chords, heavily distorted bass and ride elements of the drums are the highlights for me. This is a must have remix for anyone who loves garage house or bass.
02. Alternate Virtuality - Eero Johannes [Sound Pellegrino]
On the SND.PE Vol. 1 compilation, the stand out track was Eero’s Real Virtuality. After such success, the track was rereleased on its own EP with the B-Side track ‘Alternate Virtuality’ which for me was the more interesting track!
I liken the Finnish producer’s tracks to a cross between Flume, Wave Racer and 123Mrk with a heavy dash of funk and synthwave.
03. We Do - Lxury [Method]
The blog world was losing its mind a few days ago because of THAT track from Disclosure’s Essential Mix. That track happened to be called J.A.W.S and was soon after released on Disclosure’s own label Method. Yes J.A.W.S is an excellent track, but personally the B-Side ‘We Do’ was just a fair bit better. It might be inner-hipster coming out and saying I don’t like to follow the mainstream, but We Do is just far more creative and unique. With a 136BPM tempo, the track flits between feeling like deep house and speed garage which is really exciting to listen to.
04. So Divine (ft. Tiffani Juno) - Torqux [MTA]
I really have a soft spot for vocal tracks and this deep house / garage monster from British producer Otrqux is no exception. With simple yet infuriatingly catchy vocals from Ms. Juno and a breathy chord-bass sequence this house track is perfectly for clubs and in sets of multiple genres.
Nearly There : July 2013 Chart / Review
01. Yes I Know (Max Graef Remix) - Session Victim [Delusions of Grandeur]
This track has got without doubt some of the most creative drum programming I’ve ever heard and that really adds to the funk bassline, chords and vocal samples to make a really great track.
02. Conscious - Hostage [Four40]
I first heard this track in one of Hostage’s mixes and I really loved the attack on the main bassline. When the track was released I snapped it up quick, and although its usually a bit too rough for what I like to play out, I’ll still try.
03. Desert Night (Motez Remix) - Rüfüs [Sweat It Out!]
The Say Wat! poster boy Motez is without doubt the current face of Australian garage music so it’s no wonder this remix is so impeccable. While maintaining the original vocals of the track, Motez has changed the feel of the song with masterful vocal cuts and an awesome bassline synth.
04. Late November - Beacon [Ghostly International]
During exams especially, I’ve been satisfying my passion for ambient chill out music with artists like Cosmic Metal Mother, Seahawks, Maricopa and the like, so naturally it stumble across Beacon’s debut The Way We Separate. Late November was my favourite track on the album with a really smooth, ambient feel and the only downside with it being way too short.
05. Shockwaves - Scenic [Future Classic]
One of my favourite songs of all-time is Scenic’s cover of Air: Kelly Watch The Stars, so when I saw a new track appear on my news feed I was pretty expectant of something great, and boy was I not disappointed! Definitely a favourite at the moment, the track begins with a blissful vintage drum intro which then dives straight into a full-on tropical chill out vibe that is so reminiscent of Tame Impala, I can’t help to love it.
My new original track Quincy, soon to be released on a to be announced label!
26 Jun 2013 @ 09:56PM /
01. ‘So Many Times, So Many Ways’ Mount Kimbie [Warp]
02. ‘Detroit Part 1’ Shigeto [Ghostly International]
03. ‘Tongue’ Maribou State [Southern Fried]
04. ‘Beach Wizards’ Seahawks [cd-r]
05. ‘Chapters’ James Winter [Love Not Money]
06. ‘Hey Now’ London Grammar [Metal & Dust]
07. ‘Hope’ Ugly…
13 Jun 2013 @ 07:10PM /
'Settle' Disclosure [Album Review]
After much anticipation, I eagerly review UK duo Disclosure’s debut album Settle. An elegant waltz through grungey garage to soulful house and back again.
As soon as I saw the title ‘Intro’ I was a little apprehensive as often if they can’t think of an actual title, then the track in question will be just as uninspiring. Fortunately I was relatively surprised, in the sense that Intro had an interesting avantgarde UK garage feel to it. Lots of interesting percussion samples and a deep kick-style bassline allow for a good listen, and oddly the 0:58 length feels just right. In my opinion, Intro acts more as an introduction to track number 2 ‘When A Fire Starts To Burn’ which may well have been the intention.
2. When A Fire Starts To Burn
Even before I saw the music video I felt like this track had a very powerful gospel-esque vibe having a very bewitching groove. Being the first non-single album track I heard, it has a very reminiscent feel to it aided also by the repeating vocal sample that has a great 'Can You Feel It' feel to it. Disclosure’s signature square-bassline drives the first few minutes of the track until a Rhodes chord joins the unison. Considering that the first two tracks are basically one, it gives a good introduction to the rest of the record.
3. Latch (ft. Sam Smith)
Completely plunged into a 122BPM rhythm by a Zed Bias vocal sample you instantly know this track is going to be something special. After a single release late last year, Latch has been floating around gaining a shit ton of popularity and rightly so. Without doubt the most intricately produced track on the record, you’re almost forced to dance by Sam Smith’s energetic vocals, triple hat rhythms and the pulsing bass. My absolute favourite features of the track though is the filtered Rhodes / Hammond organ that floats around in the background whilst remaining extremely prominent, and the extra vocals added to the final chorus.
4. F For You
I first heard this song as ‘Infected’ during a live performance by Disclosure and eagerly hoped it would make an appearance on the record and was happy to see it would. Somehow my anticipation may have made my first listen of the album version a little disappointing, but nonetheless a very good house track. I was a bit on the fence as to how much I liked the track until the drop at 3:05 when I was blown away. Hearing the modulated bassline relatively solo I could then fully appreciate the subtle nuances the duo put into their tracks.
5. White Noise (ft. AlunaGeorge)
What can I say? White Noise is fantastic. So simple and catchy it’s literally bordering on torture having it stuck in your head. The riff is a perfect whistling tune and the bassline just adds to the immaculate production, while Aluna’s siren-like vocals seduce into dancing like an idiot.
6. Defeated No More (ft. Edward Macfarlane)
A fairly vanilla introduction floats along on a slow rhythm until the first verse of Ed’s smooth vocals takes you away. Reminding me of days when I was heavily into Brit indie bands, Ed’s vocals are perfect for the indie/house amalgamation. To be honest I love the signature Disclosure sounds but something really radically different may have been a much needed touch to prevent Defeated No More from being defeated by it’s album mates.
Of all the tracks on the album Stimulation is certainly the easiest for me to play, as the classic house vibes slot in perfectly with the rest of my collection. Funky bass, disco vocal cuts and shuffled hats are always a great combination, and this absolute machine of a track is no exception. Being a slight conformation to the classic house trend at the moment, it may signal a mainstream invasion of my favourite style in the near future but time will tell.
8. Voices (ft. Sasha Keable)
Sasha Keable - the queen of UK house vocals - features on the eighth track of the album. I feel as if there is a Detroit-house influence on the production with the complex percussions and plucking chords, as this may be one of Disclosure’s many influences. I only fully listened to this track as I wrote this review and I didn’t really feel myself overly enjoying it, but based on it’s premise I’m sure I’ll grow to love it.
9. Second Chance
God damn I hate reviewing albums that I get really excited for because there’s always a track that is really disappointing. Second Chance was a risky move that could have easily been really great but unfortunately doesn’t pay off for me. The RnB feel that they’ve given the track is contradicted by the relatively fast-rhythms and more dance-oriented instruments. As much as I hate to say it, this was my least favourite track on the album.
10. Grab Her!
A very grungey garage feel to this song makes for an awesome listen that stands out as one of the the more creative songs on the record. The vocal sample fills the mini-breaks well and then rising and falling keys work perfectly with the semi-difficult rhythm. I still feel that this track was missing something that I couldn’t quite pick so I gave it the benefit of the doubt.
11. You & Me (ft. Eliza Doolittle)
Though my least favourite of the singles, Disclosure took a risk deviating from the house patterns and returning to their garage roots, and to be honest it pays off! All though musically the track feels a little ‘been there done that’ the faultless vocals from Eliza bring the quality soaring.
Also of note is the spectacular remix from Bicep. I absolutely love Bicep’s honest, classic sound so when I saw they remixed the track I was understandably excited, and I was not disappointed. Maintaining the original’s garagey beat and adding some vintage organs, keys and bass, Bicep bring the track to completely different level.
Original: 7.5/10 Bicep Remix: 9/10
12. January (ft. Jamie Woon)
The more jazzy and soulful spectrum of Disclosure’s sound, this collaboration with producer and vocalist Jamie Woon (along with track 14) use Disclosure’s signature chords and Jamie’s soulful vocals perfectly. The kind of track that could be listened in a smokey bar or - just as easily - a club January’s versatility is a advantage.
13. Confess To Me (ft. Jessie Ware)
Perfect. That one word sums up this monster beautifully and does it hit hard?! The pulsey / metallic synth line is really unique and really well used, and Jessie’s vocals are immaculate as unison especially when in harmony with the male vocals in the chorus. I truly am a sucker for garage drops and the hatless rhythm at the drop is a perfect testament to this obsession. On par with Latch and White Noise, I am very close to say that Confess To Me is my favourite track on the record.
14. Help Me Lose My Mind (ft. London Grammar)
Live hats are always a good indication of quality production, and this song certainly conforms to the rule. Slow rhythms are a surefire way to my heart, and the Florence-like vocals are powerful enough to be impressively present, while still maintaining a soulful, jazzy atmosphere. I really do have a soft spot for this track as it reminds me of some of Kylie Minogue’s dabbles in house music.
Average Score for the Complete Album: 108/140 or 7.7/10
I really had high hopes for this album as I am such a huge fan of Disclosure music both past and present, but unfortunately I was not fully satisfied. Although there were several very highly rated tracks on the record, the few mediocre additions brought the whole album down from something that could’ve been truly excellent.
On a side note, the remixes from the album have been very inconsistent also; some excellent, some not so.
White Noise Remixes:
Hudson Mohawke: I really do not understand the hype with this track. Everyone on Soundcloud was trippin’ out but I really did not enjoy the remix, feeling it was very uncreative and quite amateur.
Friend Within: I love Friend Within’s remix. It maintains the key parts of the original while infusing it plenty of his signature touches.
T. Williams: The teasing intro to this monster of a remix is by far the best intro I’ve heard on a track. Maintaining the majority of the original bassline. T infuses the track with plenty of garage vibes.
Jamie Jones: I love Jamie’s 909 beats and cohesive production, but this remix was severely disappointing. Sounding so amateur it sounded like a shitty Youtube bootleg. Sorry Jamie.
You & Me Remixes:
Baauer: The current wonderkid of the world, Baauer has well and truly brought Trap to the masses but once again, this remix is a little underwhelming. As with the HudMo remix of White Noise, hundreds of superfans spam the track with ‘Omg this is sex’ and ‘Fuck I can’t handle the bass’ comments and it seems like no one really sees how average this remix is.
Bicep: Ok I talked about this one earlier, so I’ll keep it brief. BICEP + DISCLOSURE = THE BEST. Get the idea? Good.
Toro y Moi: Literally the most interesting Disclosure remix I’ve heard the track varies in rhythm giving your musical tastes a real work out and some exposure to something relatively unheard of. The track also show how well vocal cuts can be performed.
'It's A Grind' Meano : May 2013 Mixtape
My latest mixtape for May 2013. Featuring some of my absolute garage / house tracks of the moment.
01. ‘Lights Out Word Gone’ (Dark Sky Remix) Bombay Bicycle Club [Island]
02. ‘Feel It’ DJ Haus & Matrixxmann [Unknown To The Unknown]
03. ‘T.R Wilson’ Medlar & Pedestrian [Moda Black]
04. ‘Beam Me Up’ (George Fitzgerald Remix) Close [K7]
05. ‘Control’ Bareskin [Losing Suki]
06. ‘Reverse Skydiving’ (Deetron Remix) Hot Natured [Warner UK]
07. ‘Over Me’ (Detroit Swindle Rework) Zoo Look [Morris Audio]
08. ‘The Verdict, Pt. 2’ Shadow Child [Food]
09. ‘Nobody Else’ Dusky [AUS]
10. ‘The Click’ Breach & Dark Sky [Naked Naked]
11. ‘Jack’ Breach [Dirtybird]
12. ‘The Relate’ Friend Within [Pets]
Back To The Grind : Chart
01. Beam Me Up (George Fitzgerald Remix) - Close ft. Charlene Soraia & Scuba [ K7 ]
Will Saul - as his more avantgarde, electronic moniker Close - is soon to release his debut album. The first single featuring vocals from the lovely Charlene Soraia and co-produced by Hotflush boss Scuba is joined perfectly by a remix from George Fitzgerald. I rave over George Fitzgerald’s production and the catchy vocals and bassline tune are painfully catchy.
02. Babe - Evenings [ Friends Of Friends ]
I featured Evenings’ track ‘Softly We Go’ in my last chart and it came with a warning of it’s leftfield rhythm and epic-grade track length. Babe - a sister track to Softly We Go on the Yore EP - is almost a polar opposite. Whilst returning Softly We Go’s blissful atmosphere, an easy-listen beat and with short, sharp, relatively uncomplicated production make babe an easy favourite.
03. Dance To My Beat (Ardalan Remix) - Zee & Ali [ Zii Zii ]
Ardalan really knows how to produce really masterful deep / tech house. He’s been producing for years and releasing originals and remixes on labels such as Dirtybird, Anabatic, Chillin, Dub Noir, Gruuv and No Brainer. Ardalan’s remix of Zee & Ali is a bass driven house track whose produced manages to sound complicated, but never cluttered.
29 Apr 2013 @ 08:57PM /
Room For Everyone - Meano [cd-r]
My extremely ratchet acid/deep house track that I made tonight.