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Music Uncategorized

Emoh Instead – Why Can’t You (Say So…)

At first I didn’t know what to think of Emoh Instead’s “Why Can’t You (Say So…)”. At first, you’re exposed to a voice manipulated to become low-pitched and slow-tempoed, accompanied by a highly contrasting woman’s soprano whining in the background. Quickly thereafter, the mood is flipped as trappy horns hit you right in the face. Horns are all the rage these days, but Emoh has his unique twist on it. Short, accented trombone works really well with the woman’s vocals. For some reason, the abrupt stops and starts are quite appealing to me in this instance.

I really don’t know what to classify this song as. I’ve noticed that a lot lately about eclectic songs in general. How does one classify new genres of music other than “different”, or “a little bit of this and a little bit of that”. It’s pretty awesome to live in an age where unique style is embraced rather than frowned upon. As the world continues to grow its diversity, who knows what obscure, cool, catchy genres will reveal themselves! As long as you have an open mind (and ears!), you should be reveling in this genre-renaissance.

Emoh Instead has collaborated and learned from Flume for the past couple of years. They formed What So Not, of which I’m a definitely a fan. Hopefully we’ll be seeing more of Emoh’s work in the near future.

Emoh Instead – Why Can’t You (Say So…)

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Music

Bill Withers – Ain’t No Sunshine (Lido remix)

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Leave it to up-and-coming Norwegian producer Lido to execute such pure, unadulterated magic. His rework of Bill Wither’s classic is synth-punchin’ / trap slappin’ / symbol crashin’ thunderous bliss. It takes some balls to attempt a remix of such a timeless soul classic… Lido’s got balls and creativity to boot — this is the freshest, dopest remix of one of the most enduring (43 years old) anthems of the 20th century. New school meets old school, this is the future: fierce, elegant, and totally bangin’.

Here’s a bit of backstory: Lido’s unofficial remix of Disclosure’s hit single Latch was so fly that Universal pulled it from Soundcloud less than 24 hours of its inception on the interwebz. Lido retaliated by making more music, and this is it. Ain’t No Sunshine is jammy enough to tide us over until his forthcoming album’s release on Pelican Fly Records (June 9th, yeeee!!).

This track exudes the kind of fearless brilliance that fuels the current tides of change in the music industry. Producers and musicians who embody this vision are an inspiration to all of us— true innovation and balls to the wall creativity are not a thing of the past, nor will they ever be.

Moral of the story: when in doubt (or not), make more music.

And I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know, I know…

Bill Withers – Ain’t No Sunshine (Lido Remix)

Categories
Music

Miguel – …All (Kastle Remix)

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I just wanna/have fun and make money”

Don’t we all.

Since bursting onto the burgeoning nu-R&B scene with 2012’s “Kaleidoscope Dream” and its ubiquitous hit “Adorn,” Miguel has established himself as the top honey-rap singer in the game.

Honey Rap: a sub-genre combining hip-hop, R&B and soul, usually focused lyrically on illicit complementation of the female body and delivered in a sexy, nonaggressive manner (see Mario – “Let Me Love You.” I made up that definition, because apparently honey rap isn’t an accepted term. My friends and I have been using it for years…what gives, Internet? COINED.

A hallmark of Miguel’s songs is lush production: layer upon layer of  synth pads, reverb’d beats, duplicated vocal tracks. It works, but can get old. Which is why Kastle’s treatment of “…All” is so refreshing. The American producer’s work makes expert use of space, never oversoaking a track and always mastered to make every click and snap crisp and audible.

This isn’t one of Kastle’s dance tracks, per se. Rather, it begs to gush from your headphones and offer an escape. It’s a pick-me-up when you need moment of calm.

Miguel – …All (Kastle Remix)

Categories
Remixes

Active Child – Hanging On (Chrome Wolves Bootleg)

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Bootleg is one of my favorite words in the English language. Its etymological roots stem from alcohol smugglers in the late 1800’s hiding bottles in their boots. There have been few cooler professions EVER than rum smuggler. Those fools got creative.

In the musical sense, a bootleg is a track that is unauthorized by the rights holders. So if I bring my sneaky recording device into the Kanye show and get his screaming rants on tape, that’s a bootleg. Who hasn’t watched a bootleg kung-fu movie where its like five guys smoking cigarettes and laughing between the camera and the TV that’s being recorded.

After Mediafire got shut down, and in light of the general tightening of cyberspace freedom, every time I find a bootleg is a celebration. It implies that the artist who legally owns the material isn’t a huge douche, and is not taking legal action against some bedroom producer who won’t make any money of the track anyway.

Active Child is a group that makes their money off their music and touring. They would have justifiable grounds to scrub the internet clean of any unauthorized remixes, and yet they don’t.

They don’t because the remixes in fact broaden their fan base. The original “Hanging On” is a bomb track, and well worth a listen. But it is not necessarily what the kids are listening to these days. The Chrome Wolves bootleg, however, matches up to the infatuation with beat driven music, and opens an entire new audience up to Active Child’s sounds.

It’s a win-win. Or, a win-win-win, because we get to jam out to this phatty bootleg.

Active Child – Hanging On (Chrome Wolves Bootleg)

Categories
Music

Rihanna – Cake (Sweater Beats Bootleg)

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Rihanna instantly makes me feel sexy. Her music is gritty and dirty and sexy and generally just makes one giddy.

This is a dark and hypnotic mix from Sweater Beats, who has taken his signature trap sound and made this song even dirtier. A song which sounds like something you are going to hear in the back room of a dodgy club where you could get drunk of the sweat of the beautiful people grazing against you. The producer from Brooklyn, on the HW&W label, delivers on his promise to “make your booty bounce”. Although, it looks like he has not released his full first album yet, you can bet that this young producer is creating more tunes to listen to in the dark back room of your choosing.

Rihanna – Cake (Sweater Beats Bootleg)

Categories
Music

EMPT Presents: Indaba Music Weekly – AmYx “Sexy Time!”

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It’s not everyday you come across a track that’s so vibrant, so full of the kind of originality that only comes from mature audio theft, that you can’t help but be taken aback. Listening to AmYx’s whimsically titled “Sexy Time!” is an aural trip. With the emergence of trap, there’s been an obvious injection of hip-hop into dance tracks, and generally they follow the tried and true, Baauer tested tradition of repackaged Lex Luger (dare I say, Lil’ John) beats. AmYx injects hip-hop into his track, but that’s where the comparison with trap music begins and ends. “Sexy Time!” is an ever evolving, expertly crafted piece with shuffled future-garage drums, flipped samples, and understated synths.

Sexy Time!

Check out AmYx’s other work on his Soundcloud page.

Categories
Music Remixes

Cults – Bad Things (Alex Young Remix)

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Well I must say that this track took me by surprise. I don’t know whether it’s this subtle waning hangover or the unexpected trap-shake in this song, but whatever it was it worked. I’ve had this on repeat all morning and I don’t see myself stopping anytime soon. Snow is melting outside my window and the weather is bitterly cold, and I have a considerable amount of laundry to do today, but that can all wait because I want to rock out to this song just a little bit more.

This is a track that snatches you up, grips you, and then slowly but assertively lets you go. At first I thought this was a Lana del Rey song in disguise – the ambient opening is just waiting for her distinctive croon to massage it. Then Alex Young brings in a beat, some clicks, and the track’s original killer piano chord hits. Madeline Follin’s girlish airy spoken-sung vocals melt into the soundscape before Young takes us to space. It’s a magical moment in a song when just a melody can bring you up. The come down is just as magical, if not euphoric. It’s here where the whole trap genre is flipped. Instead of a deep minimalist bass boom and lustful tensions and releases, Young spins the trap through the cosmos by letting the piano do the basses work and the synths bounce through time. It’s not dark nor is it heavy. It’s trap for the light-hearted. Trap for the chill minded. Chill-trap? Chill-trap. I plan on staying in its grips all afternoon.

Cults – Bad Things (Alex Young Remix)