Skip to content

Sabella — Made It Right

Screen Shot 2015-08-14 at 10.55.00 AM

Sometimes I still think about her. It’s never at night because most of the time I am out and about in and out of parties that keep my mind focused and busy on the now. The partying is simply a drug that allows me to forget the pain of the emptiness I feel inside of me. The emptiness comes from what literally felt like having my heart ripped out.

It’s always in the mornings whenever she pops up in my mind, and it’s mostly when it’s beautiful and sunny outside that she’s there, right at the top of my head with her flawless smile and her hearty laughter. And then I wonder what she could be doing and if she’s happy wherever she may be, but I never reach out to her because of that whole thing about letting love go and it coming back someday if its real. Right?

They tell us, all of our lives, that we are too young to know what love is or that we are too young to be or fall in love, but I remember having my heart broken way before even making it to high school, so how could that be true? I guess they have been wrong this entire time because I know for a fact, after all of these years, that a broken heart is a product of love. I mention this because Sabella is only 19 years old, but the way she sings these lyrics makes me feel that she too feels the pains and anguishes that I feel, and I love that there is someone else out there that can relate to missing someone you love the way that I do.

Her delivery is sad, but beautiful in that way that only sadness could be beautiful in. Her words are pure, honest and perfectly poetic, and her tone sounds like she cried her eyes out just before jumping in the mic booth to lay her sweet vocals down. Either way, she makes me instantly connect with “Made It Right”, and she makes me realize that it’s sometimes ok to wonder about those few souls that you hold dearest to you, because while the rest of the world may not understand your connection to them long after they are gone, they don’t need to, as they weren’t there either when it first began.

It’s always just us. It’s always, just, us.

Slum Sociable — All Night

Screen Shot 2015-08-13 at 2.55.30 PM

Listening to “All Night” by Slum Sociable makes me feel like I’m watching a memory of a much older New York City through a gigantic movie screen. The filter on this film is grainy and the scenes jump erratically because there are no transitions on the raw footage and the sounds are muted. I see kids running through the streets of sprinkled waters from opened fire hydrants in the scorching summers. I see packs of children running frantically after Mister Softee trucks and packs of teens chasing each other across boulevards during endless games of manhunt. I see the loners riding trains across bridges into the smog of the city, and shirtless handballs players working their palms out as if every game were the final at Wimbledon.

There’s such a nostalgic sample-sounding element to this tune that makes it more visual for me. It takes me back to all of those summers in my childhood and combines them into that one film I am still watching as I keep it on repeat. Those summers were awesome man. Those were the summers when my only worries were getting home before curfew, and my toughest decisions were which pizzeria I was getting a slice from, but they were some of the dopest times I have lived in life, mainly because they were full of adventure and the city was still a massive land of undiscovered treasures for me; it kind of still always feels and remains that way, somehow, and I guess this song serves as a great reminder that life is the same way—one giant adventure full of priceless treasures around every bend.

No matter the memory, the sun is shining above it brightly and I can still feel its heat on the back of my neck and shoulders, now. At the top of my head, only the thought that ‘life is beautiful’ exists, consistently, in each flashback. The sidewalk is always a bright orangey color from the sun’s reflection off of it and everyone is wearing shorts; laughter, smiles and a lot of freeze tag seem to be the most prominent pieces shown from all those recollected scenes.

Oh, summer.

Stephen Bradley – Runaways

This song makes me feel like I’m in the middle of one of those amazing dreams where you realize that you’re super attracted to some girl that you never really paid attention to before. The next time you see her in real life, everything has changed. All of a sudden you’re super nervous around her. Everything about her is more appealing, and now she’s skyrocketed to #1 on your list. What was it about the dream that made you see the girl differently? Or what was it about the girl that you didn’t understand before the dream? It’s almost like you actually shared an intimate night together, and you can’t help but wonder if she had the same dream and shares this sexy little secret with you.

It’s one of those almost-lucid dreams where you’re aware enough to know it’s not quite reality, but the dream is so much fun you can’t help but hope it continues. You’re pensive, but feel free at the same time. Nervous, but confident that you’re in control. You wake up to pee, hit the pause button in your mind and dive back into bed, hoping to plunge back into REM and continue the fantasy.

The ethereal, airy feeling of “Runaways” is like helium for a balloon. Every time I listen to this I begin to mentally float back in time to a rich memory, or one of those special dreams that left its imprint on my mind. I guess if I really want those dreams to continue, I should simply keep playing this song. That’s easy enough. Isn’t that, at its core, exactly what music is supposed to do? Look at that, I figured it all out.

Night Helix — Transplant

Screen Shot 2015-08-11 at 5.36.49 PM

This goes out to all you trannys out there. Not the kind you thought of right away either, but in this case it’s the ones that have uprooted themselves from the worlds they once called home in order to follow a destiny to places that feel and seem like the complete opposite of where they’ve been:—the transplants. Whether you’ve moved to Brooklyn from whatever part of the world you were from, or you’ve moved to Europe, China, or LA somewhere from wherever part of the world you used to be from, this, goes out, to you.

Transplant” by Night Helix is like Christian Slater in the film Pump Up The Volume in which he plays Leonard Cohen‘s “Everybody Knows” while talking to everyone out there listening, only that in this case everyone Night Helix is talking to is everyone who had the balls to leave everything they knew behind in order to aggressively pursue their dreams. It’s simply just a guy letting us know that there is nothing to fear and no reason to feel lonely because there are more of us out there than we care to even imagine. It’s Night Helix letting us know that no matter what our dreams may be and what we are out here chasing as we move from city to city, town to town and nation to nation, that he is out there too if we ever need someone to talk to or listen. This is his way of talking to the world, and I for one completely dig his vibe and the page that he’s on.

Transplant can be considered something of an experimental tune with sultry spoken word delivered over thumping basslines that both keep going throughout the duration of the song. Its more like a Space Age podcast than a track, but it bangs properly enough to fit right into anything else out there that sits between the disco & house genres. It’s a weird, yet completely captivating production that has great balance between its sound elements and the vocals, and works extremely well in making us want to hear some more.

Keep talking to us sir Night Helix, we, the Rhythm Nation, are listening.

MISUN — Harlot (Lakechild Remix)

Harlot by Misun is one of my favorite songs of the past few years. I could listen to it anytime and it instantly changes my bad moods into good ones, and my good moods into even better ones.

This Lakechild Remix completely crushes it by keeping the unique vibe and fun essence that the original has with its guitar, and amping up the rest of the mix with some super space age synths and sounds that rock it out much harder, the way a deep house mix should truly sound. The bottoms are heavy and pound thoroughly to get your whole body going, and the vocal chops are a nice updated touch that breathe a whole new life into this Misun gem.

Play this at your next dance party, during your next DJ set, or when you’re just sitting at home needing a boost of energy to get you ready for the rest of your day or night.

Bang this one loudly and dance.

Sailors — Let’s Go

Screen Shot 2015-08-08 at 12.52.56 PM

Here I am, waiting for you,
waiting for you to come and take my hand,
to go, somewhere else.”

When I was engaged to Vanessa, I was the type of person that always talked big about moving away at the whim of whatever next wind came blowing across my face. I always felt that urge that many of us feel to go and explore foreign lands and see and feel and experience things we never knew even existed. The problem is that whenever the opportunity presented itself to me I always balked hard at it. I could and would find ten thousand and twelve excuses as to why I just couldn’t go at that particular moment. Excuses varied from not being able to leave my fiance behind all alone, to not being able to leave my friends here without me (as If I were that fucking important).

I won’t say that I regret not leaving and exploring the world much earlier than I did because my life has been pretty amazing, but I will say that I do regret not having  had the courage back then to just take off the way I do now.

Obviously, that phase in my life finally ended and I found a new me that was able to pick up and instantly leave from wherever he stood at the drop of a dime. I was able to see, through overcoming those particular fears, that the world is a much more beautiful place than could ever exist in our imaginations, and that the experiences that await us within these adventures are more precious than we could ever be told.

Sailors short sonic reminder, titled: “Let’s Go”, is that lesson in musical form. The instrumentation, minimalist introductory lyrics and the overall vibe is them telling you to let go of the norm of your everyday and the redundancies of your lives in order to experience what Alan, Diego and I have all experienced, which is that sometimes doing the complete opposite of everything you have been taught, trained, and raised to do is actually the best medicine for a restless mind and soul. It’s Alan & Diego (Sailors) reaching their hands out to you and pulling you into that one escape you have been so hesitant to go on,—so:

Let’s Go”

Villa — Ride Round (Ma Di Sohn)

Ride Round - Artwork

At the parking lot to the Ralph’s in NoHo late one night, Devon and I had just got back from San Diego. We had broken night out there partying with Fab after his performance at Stingaree and spend the day at a friend’s pool party in La Jolla, tanning, day drinking. vibing, relaxing and cavorting with some of SD’s finest. Almost back at Noho14, where we both lived, we could see a shit load of lights on in a huge circle in that parking lot, so naturally Devon wanted to check out what was going on, and so we went. Now, if you know me, I’m not the type to rubberneck, ever, and if there are any altercations happening that don’t involve me, well then I keep it moving. Too many times it’s the nosey person in the crowd sticking around to see what the fight is about that ends up getting shot, and I’ll be damn sure if I was going to the nosey person that night. Anyway, Dev is the complete opposite and he was driving, so there was nothing I could say.

As we pulled in we realized it was some sort of huge pop-up party that instantly just happened, and in the middle, probably every single dancer and choreographer in the music industry that lived in NoHo dancing the night away, and battling. I looked for the film crews and waited for a director to yell: “CUT!” as we bewilderedly walked around scratching our heads. If you know anything about the dance/choreography world, you know that practically every single dancer and choreographer lives in North Hollywood, or at least in some of the part of The Valley, nearby. We made eye contact with a few of the people we knew in that industry, and we drank and watched one of the most epic scenes I’ve ever stumbled upon for the next few hours. Before that night, California wasn’t nearly as spontaneous as NYC could always be, for me. After that night, I spend months searching for that next fix.

Ride Round by Toronto native Villa, is exactly what that memory feels like to me, because everything felt like it was moving in slow motion, because every dance move was enhanced and focused in on as if watching a movie in 3-D at the IMAX, and because it was one of the most ethereal experiences I have ever had to date, and, because this song makes me want it back, right now.

Fine Print — Tell Me

Screen Shot 2015-08-06 at 12.03.15 PM

Eventually the love letters stopped showing up in my mailbox, and her replies slowly disappeared. And my tears would dry up and evaporate and float away onto some comet into the cosmos some ninety trillion miles away, and I would feel all alone once again.

I imagined that some other caught her heart like a wish flower and forgot to blow it away so that his wish could be granted. She imagined that I had found an endless field of dandelions and stood there for decades trying to count them all before making unlimited wishes, blowing each one away softly in order to make every single one of those wishes become a reality. We would both be left waiting at our doorsteps for the other one to come riding down the road.

Eventually, I found another star who would allude me whenever I tried to grab it and who would taunt me from whatever opposite side of the universe I would rush to in order to grasp her. And that star would give me life, and that life would show me that true love is eternal, and that eternal true love would make all other past loves obsolete. And those obsolete loves would fade away into the darkness, and only the three of us were left.


Disclosure ft. Sam Smith — Omen [Filip Flip]

omen artwork

Very few songs make the cut for me when it comes to music that feels the way New York City does at night. I’m not talking about the NYC that you hear about from your friends who moved over to Williamsburg after college, because that New York City isn’t the same one I know. I’m talking about the NYC that has its best nights on the evenings where everyone else stays in; it’s those random Mondays and Wednesdays of the week when you can catch me shifting through the town, hopping from some underground grotto of Mexican delicacies and mezcals and into some private rooftop parties full of foreign models and the local cool kids who have the entire city in the palm of their hands via Samsung, Apple and the occasional Blackberry. That NYC is hardly seen by most and super elusive to the many, and it is kept that way on purpose.

When people move to NYC they tend to meet some cool promoter in town who hosts them for free at his or her parties (especially if they are hot and young) and who will show them a lifestyle that they could never have experienced anywhere else. But what people fail to realize is that this is just a facade to a business that generates billions yearly, and that the relationships they think are golden are also just business to these promoters, even when they appear to be your bestest friend ever. That’s what top 40 music is like to me and reminds me of: the business of being in the business and maintaining that relevancy. And then on the other hand, you have those super cool tunes that never make it to radio because they’re just not for the masses either, and that’s precisely what I dig about this Filip flip (edit) of Disclosure‘s “Omen“—its ability to take us to a part of the song that many others will never get to see.

Tonight I’m heading over to Chinatown for dinner with few friends to sip on some delicious Mezcals while we discuss new partnerships, the upcoming preparations for Fashion Week 2015 in a month, and to simply just kick back and chill out from a weekend of hardcore partying out east. Afterwards, we’re heading to Tribeca for a private pregame party until about 1am when we head off to dance to a song or three with some of the have nots in Bushwick, and then the real partying begins at the after party to it all—location undisclosed, but it’s the elephant that flies.

Oh, Tuesday nights.

Disclosure ft. Sam Smith – Omen [Filip Flip]

Elohim – Xanax

This song is literally bursting at its seams with a bunch of tightly packed little truths fighting to be heard. I mean really, no matter how at peace we are with our lives in general, don’t we all deal with countless little anxiety-producing moments all day, every day? I’m one of the happiest people I know, and I’ll be damned if I don’t have to work through 20 seconds of dread every time I have to do something relatively benign, like talk on the phone or choose what to eat for dinner. The key is to make sure the more complicated things only bring the same short burst of dread, at worst. It’s when those bursts of dread last days, weeks or even months that we find ourselves in need of help.

What’s so beautiful about this song is Elohim’s honesty. It’s like she’s testing the waters with her questions…asking for friends…for reassurance…while at the same time boasting confidently that she deals with crippling anxiety every day of her, day of her, day of her life. Revealing painful weakness in one thought and completely owning it in the next is as real as it gets and it’s super appealing. I’m pretty sure that’s what being human is all about.

Hearing Elohim deal with her anxiety this way is purely inspirational. It’s common practice to bury these feelings under layers of crap (I recently read that only 30-40% of people with chronic depression seek help), but she comes right out wearing them up and down her sleeve. Like Kramer’s lawyer Jackie Chiles infamously proclaimed about public bra-wearer Sue Ellen Mischke, “She’s flouting society’s conventions!!” And in this case, that’s a wonderful thing. Flout away Elohim, flout away.

And the trap hats and “ho’s” in the chorus don’t hurt either.