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!
In addition to his own production work Jamie plays host to the UK underground at his monthly Modulate party along with co-host Louis Saville. Former guests include UK bass hopefuls like XXXY and Hackman, both of whom released stellar records this year on Fortified Audio and PTN respectively.
Not only will you find some exclusive dubs from the likes of XXXY, but new material from Jamie himself, Darling Farah,Mista Men, and The Phantom. Don’t the let the mix’s rainy opener damper your spirits, this mix is an excellent snapshot of the rising UK producers Jamie Grind his surrounding himself with and a foreshadow of Jamie’s rightful place in a stalwart collection of new artists to watch.
Submerse – Move On [Forthcoming Formant]
Midland – Leitmotif (Midland Remix) [Phonica]
Mount Kimbie – Carbonated [Hot Flush]
Jamie Grind – Without You [Unreleased]
The XX – Crystalised (Dark Sky Remix) [Forthcoming Young Turks]
Kidkut & Arkist – Vanilla Imitate [Unreleased]
Darling Farah – Berline [Forthcoming Civil Music]
Roska & Untold – Myth [Numbers]
Deckstar Vs Kut Klose – Lovely Thang
The Phantom – Night Game (Hackman Remix) [Forthcoming Senseless]
Jamie Grind – Rum n Raisin [Unreleased]
Tina Moore – Never Let You Go (Kelly G Bump-N-Go Vocal Mix) [RCA]
Pariah – Railroad [R&S]
XXXY – Ordinary Things [Forthcoming Ten Thousand Yen]
Mista Men – What U Do To Me [Unreleased]
Gold Panda – Snow & Taxis [Notown]
Yes, today is the 9 year anniversary of R&B legend Aaliyah‘s tragic death. There are a few things floating around offering tribute, but East Village Radio’s DJ Still Life sent this over today and it hits on a variety of levels: summery, silky, sexy, salacious, okay so maybe those are mostly synonyms.
Still Life runs one of EVR’s best shows “Worldwide Smash,” on Friday’s from 12AM-2AM EST, much of it covering the low-end dance music vibes bouncing around the globe right now. As the title suggests, Still Life has infused Aaliyah classics like “Rock the Boat,” “Try Again,” and “Are You that Somebody?” with digital cumbia, a little uk funky, and even some dembow. Still Life sums up the topicality and context of a Tropicaaliyah tribute nicely saying,
“More than fortuitous mix pairings…the real roots of the project are in Brooklyn’s expanding global bass scene, which itself builds on the youthful re-invigoration of regional sounds happening around the world, where a melding of the traditional with the abrasive is encouraged, and the loping gait of folk dance music effortlessly meets the jagged textures of American hip-hop and R&B. This spirit of re-contextualization and playful appropriation informed the pairing, and the result is a tribute to a performer whose talent continues to unite listeners years after her untimely passing nine years ago.”
My personal favorite is the dembow interpretation of “Rock the Boat,” which highlights Aaliyah’s natural seduction with the languidness of Reggaeton. You can preview the track below, but head to Still Life’s band camp to download the rest and get him some stats as a thank you.
I often marvel at the thought of production duos or DJ duos, or any collaborative electronic production affair for that matter. The idea of being hunched over the computer with your friend pushing buttons seems uncomfortable and the thought of passing stems back and forth over e-mail seems cold, but ultimately I forget that musical collaborations in general (i.e. bands) have been in existence for some time now and seem to work out all right for most people.
Out today on Trash Menagerie label-favorite Car Crash Set Records is the Mighty Music Remix EP from South Wales foursome, that’s right four producers, who call themselves C.R.S.T. An acronym of their last names (Chesus, Rodski, Stroud & Tony Blitz), C.R.S.T. are, ostensibly, a band. Don’t know what your 21st century definition of band is, but the way kids are pressing buttons these days, “band” may as well get thrown around a little more fast and easy. I’d prefer a new, fresh-sounding word; something about “band” sounds punitive when discussing electronic music, sorry guitar players, and sorry C.R.S.T.
Band or not, C.R.S.T. are doing some interesting things with the sounds of UK Funky and UK Garage. With releases on Well Rounded, Ten Thousand Yen and forthcoming work on Cheap Thrills and No Hats No Hoods, C.R.S.T. have a lot to say when four chaps are busy making beats.
As a follow up to their split digital 12′ “The Bells! V.I.P. / Saturday Tingz” on Car Crash Set, they’ve gathered a truly mind-blowing set of remixes for “The Bells!” with interpretations from Girl Unit and Distal and packaged it all with a new track called “Mighty Music” with remixes from The Mista Men and Roof Light.
Every track on the E.P. is a stand-out for me, but there is no question that Girl Unit’s remix is a wtf-moment of asking oneself what they just heard. Awash in a waterfall of synths, high hats, sub-bass and melody, Girl Unit did what any other great producer does when they remix a track, he totally re-invented it.
Between C.R.S.T., Distal, Girl Unit and Mista Men, this EP is must-have, out today, exclusively on Juno. Make the purchase below, and keep scrolling to enjoy full-song SoundCloud previews of C.R.S.T.’s “Mighty Music” and Girl Unit’s remix of “The Bells!”
This post has been in the theoretical works ever since I was slapped in the face by the news that record label owner Ill Cosby lived in my city. Cosby’s label Car Crash Set is still in its infancy though as a Seattle-based label specializing in the fresh Future Bass sounds of Garage, 2-step and UK Funky from the States and abroad, Car Crash Set is doing the unparalleled and perhaps unthinkable. Focusing on burgeoning, little-known producers, Crash Crash has put out releases from the now recognized South Wales crew C.R.S.T. and rising Atlanta producer Distal, as well as remix treatment from people like Emvee and Dubbel Dutch. I’m super psyched to have today’s Car Crash Set release as a perfect excuse for an intro to the label and its happenings. For the rest of the post, I will let label-head Ill Cosby do the talking.
“Today Car Crash Set will release Gremino‘s latest single ‘Shining’ / ‘Be and See’. These two tracks have been making their round for a year but have never seen proper release until now. Freshly mastered by Bob Macc, these tracks sound better than ever. Included in this pack are two giant remixes. UK phenom Jam City serves up a blinding remix of ‘Shining’ that is sure to set dancefloors and blog playlists ablaze. From Sheffield comes Grievous Angel with his smashing, club ready remix of ‘Be and See’ that has already seen DJ support from Mary Anne Hobbs (BBC) and Blackdown (Rinse.FM). This single is a must-have for garage fanatics.
More from these artists: Gremino has previously released his single ‘Screech’ / ‘Wobbler’ on C/C/S and has recently released his EP ‘It’s Working’ on Rag and Bone, Jam City’s white label debut on Night Slugs is forthcoming, and Grievous Angel’s recent remix of Dusk Blackdown’s ‘Margins Music’ LP is out now on Keysound.”
Kush Aurora really came out of nowhere. His Voodoo Sessions EP, which drops today, is loaded with dense layers of driving, tight percussion, low (I mean really low), rolling basslines, and gorgeous, colorful splashes of dubbed-out atmospheric samples that conjure visions of what might be this producer’s private elsewhere in some tropical parallel dimension.
Call it future dubstep, call it African grime, call it “soca-step,” this bay area stepper comes through with four solid tunes that will faire as well in the club as they will in the headphones of bedroom listeners.
The EP also features a collaboration with San Francisco Dubstep don Bakir- a remix of Maga Bo’s “Nakhil,” which was previously released on Dutty Artz, and features killer bars from Tunisian spitfire rapper K-Libre. I had the opportunity to play the Boston-area Links Soundclash last year with Bakir- local and nationally-known producers in a massive laptop battle playing only their original tunes- and the man absolutely murdered the dance. And we all know that Mago Bo is the fucking man. That, and the whole things is streamable for your listening pleasure at this link.
You can grab one of the tracks off of the Voodoo EP for free, the original mix of Humidifier, which also gets a bangin’ club remix that’s only available for purchase. The free download is here.
Kush Arora – Humidifier (Original Mix)
The whole EP is available for download here and it’s definitely worth buying.
Kush is also offering up a studio mix which looks like its jam-packed with exclusives and originals and seems to be on some techno rasta tip, which is cool. Check it out!