SOHN et Bowery Ballroom

I’m not alone when I say that last week was remarkably overloaded with talented artists swarming the scene in New York City. Regardless of the rain and foggy overtone that flooded the streets, I still made my way to the sold-out SOHN performance at Bowery Ballroom on the Lower East Side. Having spent the previous night on the ground floor for Shlomo, I chose a different locale this time and perched myself on the 2nd floor in order to get an aerial view that was not bombarded with humans and cellphones.  I could be submerged into the music without distractions.

Seducing the world via his own brand of dream-soaked synth and lushed out R&B, Christopher Taylor, aka SOHN, is a force to be reckoned with. He did not hold back during the 75-minute show that encompassed all of our favorite tracks on his new full-length album Tremors. Surrounded by two other musicians, SOHN was dead beat in the middle.  At first glance, you might think he was a fellow New Yorker, wearing only black on stage and a hoody pulled up so all you could see was his silhouette.  But no, this Vienna-based London-born producer and vocalist certainly had a much more relaxed tone, with a significantly slower pace, everything that a native New Yorker doesn’t possess. These subdued vocals entered your brain waves and immediately disregarded thoughts of your day-to-day responsibilities and hustle and bustle that living in a city begs of you.

Watching him on stage transported me out of this consumer feeding frenzy and drew me into each word, watching his hands groove so freely with the airy synths and slow-motion bass. Once he began to sing, his vibrato tenor began to press against the heavy, pattering synths and looped vocals and I began to float. The audience fell silent and we all collectively felt the strong threads of melancholy. Influences of Björk and Radiohead were prominent, as well as the noticeable similar characteristics of James Blake and Autre Ne Veut. But each song started off slow and steady. Every whisper of sound caused the LED lights to synchronize with the bass, and deep vibrant colors of green, white, and red were displayed; each one, painstakingly released pure raw emotions into the atmosphere.

In a recent article, SOHN described his work with moments of positivity, however, they come across in a very dark and dreary way. For instance, his song titled, “The Wheel” begins with, “I died a week ago.” It’s clear that the atmosphere is murky, but this man explains that he intends for the listener to understand that it is a new beginning or fresh start. You can be reborn and have this freedom to be who you want, when you want, and go in any direction your heart chooses. For me, these elements were the core moments I took away from the show.

Each morning we wake up is a new beginning, and we get to make choices that will ultimately shape our journey on this planet.  I hope all of you have a chance to see SOHN live, and if not, then blast the album and you too will feel the rebirth. If you have fallen in love, recently separated, had your heart broken, or find yourself on the prowl for the love of your life, remember that we all have the power to attract — we all have shining souls, and what you project onto others will come back to you.

The takeaway: Positivity comes in many ways, even through darkness.

S O H N – Artifice

EMPT Presents – Wet Dreams #1 by Barry Poppins

We all want so much man, over achievement and extreme ambition are glorified and admired almost universally these days but have you ever stopped to ask why?…

Hustle, hustle, hustle. Grind, grind, grind. Why does everyone got hustle on their mind?”

MIA was something else back then, I remember first hearing that hook and questioning everything. I won’t get into all that right now now but always remember to look around your environment and question what you see. Just because everyone is doing something, just because it’s tradition, culturally revered or whatever doesn’t mean it’s truth. Think about it, if the massive amounts of cultural influence, media and tradition we’rent around to sway would you care about the same things? Sometimes you have to press pause on the Human Drama and give your mind a break to formulate it’s own path. Which brings me to the subject of todays post, the Wet Dreams #1 by Barry Poppins, a former EMPT writer that returns with a downtempo/chill mix worthy of boss caliber reflection and relaxation. This mix isn’t made for Friday or Saturday night, this is strictly for downtime, Sunday chillin’ folks. I’ve had it running top to bottom for the last hour and I gotta say the kids downtempo song selection is tight enough to rival the best of them. Anyhow, I’ve told half the story but the rest is from the maestro himself, press play on this one ASAP, enjoy…

In the 6 months, I’ve been exposed to more music crossing more genres than perhaps at any point in my life. It was both a blessing and a curse, that allowed me to hone in on the sounds that truly act as aural therapy for me. One of these sounds is a very cliche, five letter word: chill. The great part about this genre, I’ve discovered, is that chill out music is not confined to one genre. So many artists across so many different “genres” and decades and continents create an array of music on a daily basis. But if you examine every prolific group or artist’s catalogue thoroughly enough, odds are you’ll find a soothing, relaxing track somewhere. 

These are the types of songs that act as ear valium. Since being afflicted by the most gnawing, aggravating medical condition I’ve ever experienced–tinnitus–the need to listen to sparse, mellow, and just calming music has truly arisen. Tinnitus hurts the ear, yes, but it also tortures the soul and the mind. I’ve always been an anxious person, but this disease has made everything in life more difficult–going to clubs, talking on the phone, or just walking down the street. You hear voices, you hear a constant ringing, and you don’t ever know if it will come to an end. 

As someone who’s constantly bombarded by stress–both self-inflicted and through external forces–it’s a sound without which I’d be helpless. Thus began my transformation of my musical diary/Tumblr into a very niche, and very mellow music blog, along with a mixture series I hope to update on a monthly basis. Loosely inspired by the White Light Series, and mainly by the overall need to decompress, take a deep breath, and be thankful for what I do have and can control in life, came The Pleasure Dome. I don’t know what, if anything, this little site will turn into. But I do know–as long as I can hear–I’ll be on the look out for the cream of the chill out crop. Without further ado: Welcome To The Pleasure Dome.

Track List:

  1. Tangerine Dream – Love On A Real Train (Chilled Out Euphoria Version)
  2. Radiohead – Climbing Up The Walls (Zero 7 Remix)
  3. Mechanical Me – Beachy Head (Bonobo Remix)
  4. Air et Gordon Tracks- Playground Love
  5. La Roux – In For The Kill (Skream’s Let’s Get Ravey Remix)
  6. Leonard Cohen – I’m Your Man
  7. Nicolas Jaar feat. Scott Larue & Will Epstein- With Just One Glance You
  8. Lou Reed – Walk On The Wild Side (Rocco Raimundo Extended Version)
  9. Flight Facilities – Claire De Lune (Them Jeans Edit)
  10. Montauk – Speed Of Light
  11. Cosmic Kids – Freight To My Soul
  12. Telepopmuzik – Breathe
  13. Zero 7 – Destiny
  14. Daft Punk – Make Love
  15. Mansions On The Moon x Junior Boys – Lights Off
  16. Daft Punk – Nightvision

The Knife – Got 2 Let U

I’m constantly faced with the question of what my favorite track of all time is. Sometimes the question is framed differently, perhaps pertaining to what my favorite electronica track is, or new indie artist. The question is often met with uncertainty and fear on my behalf, because there are so many that I don’t want to discredit and so many that I don’t want to forget. Consistently though, I’ve turned to a few artists. The Knife, The Weeknd, Little Dragon, The Black Keys, Radiohead…these are all staples in my musical diet. And this track, is exactly the answer to most questions that I encounter about music. Almost all musical questions directed at me can be directed towards this band and this track in particular. It’s perhaps one of the few tracks that I’ve discussed at great length with others where the reactions are very similar across the board. It’s usually a street reaction, one where the eyes are closed and the head is bobbing in tune with the beat. Sometimes you feel as though you’re invincible, like no matter what people think of you at that moment, you are so much cooler than them.

I’m always thinking about what I would say to The Knife if I met them. I really don’t know what I would say. I would probably hope that I could carry a sane conversation. One that covers many different levels, but mostly hoping that they have a lot to say about human emotions. Their music, while revolutionary in sound and movement, is extremely emotional for me and I’m so curious to know where it comes from. What channels of their brains direct that sort of innovation.

If you’re not immediately lured in by the in your face bass right from the start, then you’ll definitely be attracted to the sneaky introductions of new instrumentation as the song progresses. The deep voice that comes in during the second verse, the horn, the punchy vocals in the background — it all happens at such a sly pace, where you feel like you’re meeting new characters of a novel within the span of four minutes. And it’s remarkable.

This track doesn’t necessarily exude swag in the obvious way that heavy hip-hop beats do, but in its own way, it gives off a certain amount of swag. The kind that inspires swag in its listener. I hate using that word in excess, and for that I’m sorry. But I think you guys are with me on this one.

The Knife – Got 2 Let U

EMPT Presents – S U M M E R N I G H T S: a n t i – d a y 1a by Ryan Radler

I’m a hundred miles and running right now so I have no choice but to make this a quick one.

Ryan sent me a brand spanking new mixtape over the weekend and talk about perfect timing! My BB won’t stop buzzing with emails, I have music to produce, restaurants to curate, DJ sets to finish and all in the before Friday when I fly out to DR to spin at a beach party. Life is going fast right now and I have no intention on slowing up. Anyways, Ryan says this is a pensive tape but for those of us in the fast lane it’s more like the perfect balance. Gotta run but here are the notes I was sent regarding this tape, pretty much says it all, enjoy.

For all those who live in the fast lane, the new Anti-day series

THE HARD SELL
Ok so this week, I was hoping we could drop my SUMMER NIGHTS MIX: anti-day 1a. It’s a departure from the norm and could be a nice way to “mix up” the feature/series. The theme is a little more pensive and dare I say even a bit sensitive? I would suggest a WARNING to only play this thing at night when the mood is right. It’s sort of like in the movie Gremlins but opposite I guess. LOL. And anyways- Space Age Bachelor Pads only really come alive at night right? Mine does! HAHAHA!
Below is a short anecdote about my own personal experience with the mix:
MOONLIGHT DRIVE
I recently took my girl out in my 1983 Gold Datsun 280zx (“Goldie”) for a moonlight drive all over the hills and valleys of Los Angeles. I couldn’t think of a more appropriate moment to kick on my SUMMER NIGHTS MIX 1A.
It was a very hot day in LA so we also had the luxury of an unusually warm evening. We drove up the 110 freeway from Downtown  to Pasadena and beyond, weaving in and out of side streets and neighborhoods unknown. The bright, white moon was low in the sky, drifting behind the tall palm tree silhouettes- sometimes disappearing behind a hill of pine trees- only to reappear across a valley of orange street lamps and blinking buildings.
Halfway through the mix I realized that my acceleration and turning were being less directed by me and more by the beats and melodies of the music. The mix completely took over the steering wheel just like in Knight Rider or Iron Eagle!

s u m m e r n i g h t s: anti-day 1A

1. I Look To You – MIAMI HORROR (TIM FUCHS MAKE OUT REMIX)
2. Arcadia – APPARAT
3. Blood Bank – BON IVER (DUOSSEUDO REMIX)
4. We Are The People – EMPIRE OF THE SUN
5. Roll On – DNTL (FT. JENNY LEWIS)
6. Golden Age – BECK
7. The Night – FRANKIE VALLEY
8. A Fond Farewell – ELLIOT SMITH
9. E-bow The Letter – R.E.M.
10. Codex – RADIOHEAD
11. Life Is A Gamble – MARVIN GAYE
12. To The Lighthouse – MEMORY HOUSE
13. Was – VINCENT GALLO
14. I Wanna be Adored – STONE ROSES
15. I Cried Like A Silly Boy – DEVOTCHKA

EMPT Presents – S u m m e r N i g h t s 1 a by Ryan Radler by Et Musique Pour Tous

Xaphoon Jones – Testify (Radiohead Vs Kanye West)

This is an oldie but goodie from the first Xaphoon Jones mixtape that was released back in August of ’09. The verse used for this mash-up is from one of my favortie Kanye songs, Touch The Sky. I feel like Kanye’s career is going to be divided into two very silly parts now, pre and post Taylor Swift. Well, this pre-Swift song is one of the many reasons why people gravitated to Kanye to begin with. In the verse Kanye talks about his journey to the top and the struggles and the struggles he had to overcome to get there.

I’m trying to write my wrongs,
But it’s funny these same wrongs helped me write this song.
Now…”

Tupac and Eminem were artists who exuded extreme skill and confidence when it came to their craft but also gave us real life, insecurities and vulnerabilities in music that most people just wouldn’t be comfortable revealing in life. It’s easy to forget it now but that’s also something Kanye gives us with his music. It’s just a shame his stunts, real or fake, distract everyone from that. Anyways, this is a great mash-up from a very talented producer, enjoy.

Xaphoon Jones – Testify (Radiohead Vs Kanye West)

The Twelves – Episode II

The Twelves have released 3 fantastic mixtapes and so far I’ve posted two and it’s been one of the most downloaded files on this site. The time has come to complete the series with yet another jewel, Episode II. Aside from Steph Lund’s Le Miel du Mois (recently crowned mixtape goddess on The Clink), I can’t say I’ve heard many mixtapes that can keep my attention for more then a song but this series has absolutely no problem accomplishing that task. I quoted my friend Ben when I posted their last mixtape and I’ll quote him again for this one,”“new 12s mixtape = predictable amazingness.” There really is nothing else to say. Here are a few bonus remixes as well, enjoy.

La Roux – In For The Kill (The Twelves Remix)

Black Kids – Hurricane Jane (The Twelves Remix)

Tracklisting: Download

1.  Zeigeist – Humanitarianism (The Twelves Remix)
2.  Radiohead – Reckoner (The Twelves Replay)
3.  Mirwais – Naive Song
4.  Of Montreal – Gronlandic Edit
5.  David E. Sugar – To Yourself
6.  The Virgins – Rich Girls (The Twelves Replay)
7.  Daft Punk – Voyager
8.  Jupiter – CHIP
9.  Fleet Foxes – White Winter Hymnal (The Twelves Replay)
10.  Metronomy – Heartbreaker
11.  The Twelves – Works for Me (The Twelves Replay)
12.  Lykke Li – Dance Dance Dance (The Twelves Replay)

The Twelves – Episode II by etmusiquepourtous

Previous Mixtapes:

30 Minutes of Twelves

The Twelfth Hour

The Twelfth Hour

The Twelves

Will someone please explain to me the phenomenon that is time while at work? Doesn’t it feel like right before you get to work time is flying and you can’t move fast enough but the second you sit down it’s like you go into some alternate world and it takes an hour for 5 minutes to pass. Work sucks huh? You know what, I really like the concept of that new Bruce Willis movie. We should have robots that represent us at work while we do important things like thinking of more ways to use robots and not do anything. That probably won’t happen today so I’ve got a little something to help you day dream and procrastinate more than you already do…

The Twelves released a new 60 minute mixtape two days ago and I think my friend Ben’s facebook message describes it best: “new 12s mixtape = predictable amazingness.”  This is the followup to their previous mixtape Episode II, which I never got around to posting but will in the next week or so.  I’ve been listening to this all morning and it rocks, there’s really nothing else to say.  These guys just get it when it comes to song selection and production. The transitions from song to song are seamless, the mash-ups and remixes are top notch and the overall flow and feel is energetic and entertaining all throughout.  it’s quite good.

The Twelfth Hour (Download)

Zeigeist – Humanitarianism (The Twelves Remix)

Zeigeist – Humanitarianism (The Twelves Remix)

MP3

Groove Armada – Drop The Tough (The Twelves Remix)

Drop The Tough (The Twelves B-Live Remix Edit)

MP3

Here’s the set list:

Le Miel du Mois: Julliet

Apparently it’s July, welcome. A lot happened for us in June, we had the most traffic EMPT had ever seen and got shut down in the same month. Our diabolical hosting company Gisol Inc. stole our website and content so we’ve had to rebuild from scratch – no easy task. But atlas there is light at the end of the tunnel and what could be more suitable to celebrate our return then announcing the July version of Steph Lund’s beloved Le Miel du Mois! With that said, here is an excerpt from Steph hinting at the masterminding that helps create this tape:

Le Miel du Mois: Juillet: With the constant rain in June and thinking about the intense heat on its way, this mix reflects the restlessness of summer.
Spotlight Track: The last track is from Paris based artist Three Leaves and a Head – a remix of Radiohead’s Reckoner, off the In Rainbows album. I first heard of Three Leaves and a Head from We All Want Someone To Shout For.
Remixes of Radiohead are a bit touchy for me, because I don’t see how most tracks can improve, however, these subtle enhances Three Leaves and a Head accomplished are really beautiful and a perfect way to end this mix. Check out Three Leaves and a Head’s Myspace page which also includes a remix of Nude.

Le Miel du Mois at work? That’s much better than work at work! Télécharger (clic droit+enregistrer sous)

1. Feist – My Moon My Man (Boys Noize Remix)

Feist – My Moon My Man (Boys Noize Remix)

MP3
2. We Have Band – Hear It In the Cans (DIY Version)
3. Sleigh Bells – Ring Ring
4. Holy Ghost – Hold On
5. James Yuill – No Surprise
6. Paul and the Patients – Blogspot Nick Seely Remix
7. The Big Pink – Velvet
8. Zambri – Easier
9. Jack Peñate – Tonight’s Today
10. Camera Obscura – My Maudlin Career
11. Breakbot – Summer Party
12. Bat for Lashes – Trophy
13. La Roux – Bulletproof (Live at Glastonbury)
14. Radiohead – Reckoner (Three Leaves and A Head Remix)

Le Miel du Mois by Steph Lund: Juin

It’s June and traditionally that meant warm weather in NYC but instead were still dealing with this annoying winter/spring/summer hybrid that won’t seem to go away. Fortunately, there are other things to look forward to in the new month, one of those happening is right here on EMPT – Le Miel du Mois. Courtesy of Steph Lund, Le Miel du Mois is a downloadable mixtape full of amazing songs, covers and remixes. This months is fantastic so I’m writing a post about it and highly recommending you check it out. Here’s the song list along with two of my fav’s from the tape, enjoy.

Le Miel du Mois at work? That’s much better than work at work! Télécharger (clic droit+enregistrer sous)

1. The Whitest Boy Alive – Golden Cage (Fred Falke Remix)
2. Futurecop! – N.A.S.A
3. Bloc Party – Your Visits Are Getting Shorter
4. The Foals – Red Socks Pugie
5. Friendly Fires – Paris (Aeroplane Remix)
6. Paul and The Patients – Complaint 15
7. The Twelves – When You Talk
8. Phoenix – Rome
9. Sebastien Tellier – Roche (Breakbot Remix)
10. Kevin Drew – Safety Bricks
11. French Kicks – So Far We Are
12. Peter Bjorn & John – Up Against The Wall
13. The Lust Puppets – We Smoke Fags
14. M.I.A. – Paper Planes (DFA Remix)
15. DiscoTech vs Radiohead – Everything in its Right Place (Gigamesh/DiscoTech Remix)
16. Gui Boratto – Beautiful Life

Radiohead – 15 Step (Feat. USC Marching Band)

I didn’t watch the Grammy’s but I saw this.

Radiohead – 15 Step (Feat. USC Marching Band)