Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Introducing: LE1F

In a recent music video by producer and rapper LE1F (watch below) the camera pans from a larger-than-life ice cream sundae to what could be the crooning lovers of LE1F and his beau (they’re actually best friends), behind them a kaleidoscope of candy-colored Gotham City lights. Singing from a high-rise apartment in Manhattan, the two could be at a birthday party at Def Jam studios or perhaps just broke in to celebrate by themselves, leaving mixtapes as evidence.

DC/AC – Juking So Solemnly from trifling mental on Vimeo.

Listening to the Future, or 2011, will sound a lot like LE1F. A senior at Weslyan University, LE1F makes rap music that is as educated in hip-hop aesthetics as it is a complete departure from them. Situated partly in the gothic, brooding work of Three 6 Mafia’s DJ Paul or rapping with the morose weight of Z-Ro, LE1F draws on the gravity of crunk’s best while infusing it with his own brand of banjee queerness that blends, melts, and makes multi-flavored ice cream sundaes of 21st-century club music.

Amongst work for Das Racist and Spank Rock, LE1F is preparing his first official mixtape for release at the beginning of the year entitled Dark York. Limited to 100 physical copies, Dark York will be packaged in fully recycled material, and feature a combination of LE1F’s own productions, raps, and collaborations. To help fund this project LE1F is doing what future, next-level artists like himself should be doing—raising money from fans and supporters to subsidize projects. Check out a video he produced in honor of the fundraising, and then head over to Kickstarter where you can donate as little as a $1 to the fund. You’ll no doubt be tempted to contribute more though, as donations of $100 or more get the privilege of naming a track and a handmade wood pendant.

Also, download a LE1F collaboration from the Dark York mixtape with L.A. duo NGUZUNGUZU called “hate2wait,” which begins as a love song dedicated to internet-rap phenom and BASED GOD Lil’ B.

LE1F / N/A /// – hate2wait

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posted by TheCrookedClef at 4:28 pm  

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Phantom – Night Game (Zeppy Zep Remix)

Two summers ago we debuted Bartosz Kruczynski a.k.a. The Phantom‘s swirling, xylophone-tinged “Cambodia,” a track that eventually saw release on a Top Billin’ compilation of UK Funky that attempted to capitalize on the nascent genre. The compilation was OK, but Kruczynski’s participation was the highlight, and now after over a year of negotiating a proper debut EP, Senseless Records will finally do his music justice.

My favorite aspect to The Phantom’s productions is that he gives melody the utmost of attention. From “Cambodia” to his EP’s two tracks “Girl” and “Night Game,” whooshing piano and synth melodies carry his tracks into the heat of the night while he lets his percussion remain fresh but understated.

Titled simply, The Phantom EP, the record is out December 6 and features remixes from Trash-favorite and U.S. bass hopeful Brenmar, U.K. producer Hackman, and fellow Pole Zeppy Zep. Zep’s bombastic, epicly layered remix of “Night Game” is available for download below!

The Phantom – Night Game (Zeppy Zep Remix)

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posted by TheCrookedClef at 6:11 pm  

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Lamin Fofana – What Elijah Said EP/#Calypso Mix

Google “Lamin Fofana” and you may discover that I’ve been a Fofana proponent for the last year, giving his “Fatmata Was Here” mixtape the shine back in August of ’09. Lamin’s mixes have always ranked in my most-played; their disregard for seamlessness and love of space tug at the strings that stretch from head to heart. Mix structures and sonic intersection aside, Lamin’s mixes often showcase what an eager and omnivorous music listener he his. From Rap nerdery to ambient aesthetics, to his musical affection for his Sierra Leonian heritage, it’s no surprise Lamin is now making music that defies categorization.

Out today on Lamin’s homefield, Dutty Artz turf is his first EP What Elijah Said. Featuring 4 of Lamin’s original productions, the depth and range of Lamin’s sound palette is staggering for a first outing. The EP is at times haunting, at times celebratory, experiences that are often the result of Lamin’s use of complex rhythms and punchy percussion. Vocal samples thread through the record as well, stretching each song’s resonance beyond beats and into metaphysical realms worthy of discussion. Asked to describe the EP, Lamin quoted Elijah Muhammad, the Nation of Islam founder who said,

“Yet, he would refer to the Mother Plane, a mysterious space ship with superior beings, giant black gods or something like that, that patrolled the universe, keeping an eye on the devil and ready to rescue Black Muslims from Armageddon.”

A couple weeks back XLR8R magazine debuted Lamin’s “Dance In Yr Blood” for a free, high-quality download and I will re-up it here to pique your interest. I also received a brand new mix from Lamin today entitled #Calypso (yes, hashtag and all), that is in keeping with the impeccable taste of his previous mixes and is sure to further intrigue newcomers into the musical world of Fofana.

What Elijah Said is out now on Dutty Artz and can be found at Boomkat, Juno, and iTunes.

Lamin Fofana – Dance In Yr Blood

Lamin Fofana – #Calypso

#Calypso Track List:
Kuedo – Shutter Light Girl
Lucky Dragons – Realistic Rhythm
The Big Pink – Tonight (oOoOO Remix)
Ikonika – Yoshimitshu
Scissors and Sellotape – Chapter 4
Mount Kimbie – Carbonated
Svpreme Fiend – Heartache VIP
Shed – Ostrich-Mountain-Square
Spoek Mathambo – Control
Oneohtrix Point Never – Preyouandi
Mike Ladd – Planet 10
Mark Pritchard – Heavy As Stone
Digital Mystikz – Unexpected

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posted by TheCrookedClef at 6:41 pm  

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Taken on a Cross-Cultural Vaudevillian Visionquest with Tremor’s Caracol EP

Tremor Caracol EP

Hello TM readers. Pardon my train of thought but I thought I’d post a tune that is the EXACT reflection of my state of mind right now. Imagine working countless hours on something that involves executing a surrealist creative direction (sorry can’t go into detail since I signed a NDA), daydreaming about taking a holiday around the world and then allowing your delirium to twist the two into a hypnotic whirlwind of sound, harmony and rhythm. That is basically what happened as I gave El Remolon remix of Tremor‘s Viajante a listen.

It started with a South American feel, using “SAYA”, a rhythm from the high mountains of the Andes as the backbone of the song. Then Balkan, South American and pan-European instrumentals laid their way in. My personal favorite happened 2/3 of the way through when I began to hear tango accordion in combination with some Ray Parker Jr. style Ghostbustin keyboard synths!

After that, I continued the journey with the remaining tracks on Tremor’s Caracol remix EP. released by ZZK Records. Feel free to buy it on Itunes, Amazon, TTL, Boomkat, Juno, Zero-Inch or Phono Monkey

And check out the track here:

Viajante – Tremor (El Remolon remix)

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posted by Waxyjax at 12:39 am  

Friday, October 2, 2009

Pacific Steppaz

Nothing makes my mind’s vocal chords sing like great stories about musical dissemination. So here is one for your books: While two UK backpackers are hiking the tiny island of Vanuatu in the South Pacific, they meet local islanders John Regis and Thony B, who, during an unfortunate rainstorm were kind of enough to take the hikers in. What they didn’t know was that the Brits were carrying a Speed Garage and 2-Step compilation CD, the sounds of which wouldn’t leave the island of Vanuatu until the two formed the production duo Pacific Steppaz, and were making innovative 2-Step and Dubstep sounds together with samples from a Melanesian choir. The results are quite interesting, and they’re below for your listening pleasure.

The first tune, their “theme song” entitled “Pacific Steppaz,” features a nice 4/4 beat that is slow to build, stretching the song with a welcomed patience before unleashing a triumphant array of youthful choral voices and the added benefit of a polite, but impressionable bassline.

Pacific Steppaz – Pacific Steppaz Theme

The second tune, and my personal favorite, is entitled “Gerrard II. (Sat In Silence). Utilizing the bright choral samples of the Melanesian choir again, this tune pairs them with a subtle 2-step riddim, reminiscent of Kanye’s best moments with tribal drum samples. Darkening the tune with a menacing vocal sample, a man recites the words “We buried them ourselves”, foreshadowing an ominous break midway in the song, dropping into some spacious and hollow Dubstep bizness, conjuring Shackelton‘s skeletal production techniques.

Pacific Steppaz – Gerrard II. (Sat In Silence)

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posted by TheCrookedClef at 3:00 pm  

Monday, August 24, 2009

Lamin Fofana – Fatmata Was Here

Little Lamin

Little Lamin

I feel pleased to introduce to Trash readers an important addition to us multi-genre band of outsiders, Mr. Lamin Fofana, a member of the Dutty Artz family. You may know Lamin from his “Recession Rap Podcast” series, a Fader Magazine-approved collection of Hip-Hop and Rap hopefuls, waxing wise about, among other hot topics, money. This signifies Lamin’s first foray into the soundclash world of Tropical, Dubstep, and Dancehall, wrestling with a wide array of unclean sounds, challenging the ear and moving the body. I look forward to the day when people like Lamin rule the world. Don’t say I didn’t tell you so.

Lamin Fofana – Fatmata Was Here


01. Bvdub – Return To Tonglu
02. RHy-s on – 2
03. Bijan Mofid – Shahreh Ghesseh, I & II
04. Co$$ feat. Blu – Angelic
05. Jamie Vexd – In System Travel
06. Zomby – Tears in the Rain
07. Dred Man-Gi feat. Nell – Não Ta Se Entender
08. Kasai Allstars – Tshitua fuila mbuloba
09. King Midas Sound – Cool Out
10. Alpha Blondy – Jerusalem
11. Cauto – Despartar
12. G-Side – Alpine Tick

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posted by TheCrookedClef at 2:04 pm  
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