American music producer DJ Shadow dropped his second album "The Less You Know, The Better" a few months back. My favorite track is "Scale It Back" because it features Swedish electro band 'Little Dragon'. I love them. Yukimi Nagano's vocals are hot, R&B soul but served on ice. I mean, she's sexy and she's chill all at once. It's Neo-soul with textured production. And now "Robotaki" (20! year old Preston Chin) has released a sweet remix that you can listen to on his SoundCloud:
or on YouTube here:
And for track-by-track walk through of "The Less You Know, The Better" by DJ Shadow himself, take a look at this interview he did for Billboard.
Mauro Remiddi is captain of the phenomenal solo project, 'Porcelain Raft'. He lives in London but hails from Rome. He's been a one man wolf pack for a while now, recording and performing live using electronics, keyboard, guitars, loops and a sampler. But this lone wolf is starting a European Tour with M83 this January!
With an awesome accent and a voice as smooth as velvet that envelops you like smoke at a live show, Remiddi's sound is like fuzzed up Beach House. This new song called "Put Me To Sleep" is from his forthcoming album "Strange Weekend" due out January 15 and it will put you in a nice, calm trance when you listen to it.
And for a taste of one of my faves! from his debut album last year, check out 'Tip of Your Tongue"
Zany American rock band 'Of Montreal' have been experimenting with different genres and sounds for over a decade. They announced the completion of their 11th album due out early next year and have (just this morning!) released this 7 min track which perfectly embodies their love for, let's call it, "music genre fusion". Using everything from organic instruments like live drums and pianos to electronica and psychadelic rock, this track covers the spectrum from upbeat melodies and lyrics to dark and haunting chillwave.
Aptly named "Wintered Debts" it is a gorgeously woven quilt of music fusion for you to wrap yourself up in during during these cold, wintery days.
'The Naked and Famous' have been busy touring the world for the last year playing the fuzzy, electro pop hits from their debut album 'Passive Me, Aggressive You". Radio favorites "Young Blood" and "Punching in A Dream" are instant mood elevators with band sweetheart Alisa Xayalith's soaring vocals as a highlight. But their heavier songs like "The Sun" and "Frayed" are what brought me to really love this band. Thom Power's drowsier whisper adds texture to the New Zealand duo's harmonies and really showcases the band's polarity of sound.
Playing back to back shows, Thom says he only has time to work on new demo's from the bunk of his tour bus. He and Alisa have been collaborating from their computers and are scheduled to come back to LA for some recording time in the studio this December! Oh, and to play another show of course, at The Gibson Amphitheatre for Night 2 of KROQ's Almost Acoustic Xmas.
With nothing more than the male/female juxtaposition of their voices overlapping the sweet sound of an acoustic and electric guitar, this American boy and this British beauty make 'Big Deal' feel like a pretty big effin deal.
Kacey Underwood and Alice Costelloe released their 12 track debut album 'Lights Out' in September and it's sound is seductively simple. The album name is sweetly ironic considering the low maintenance look and shy demeanor these two share. Seems to me like they share even more then that though. Despite the deeply revealing and honest lyrics, it's like the 'Big Deal' share a secret, and we can't help but listen so intently to find out what it could be.
This music video was directed by Alberto Rossini for Chromatic's new single "Kill For Love". It is the title track taken from their forthcoming album due out this January.
Ruth Radelet really kills it in this title track. She sings that she will "Kill for Love" but I say that she is killing it purely on vocals. Her voice is beautifully bare and refreshingly void of any apparent studio mixing. And the lyrics feel just as honest when Radelet sings:
Everybody's got a secret to hide
Everyone is slipping backwards
I drank the water and I felt alright
I took a pill almost every night
In my mind I was waiting for change
While the world just stayed the same
Everybody's got a secret to hide
Everyone is slipping backwards
I can barely wait to hear the rest of this LP in January! But in the meantime, another Italo disco band shot by Alberto Rossini have released a new video for you to check out called "Warm in The Winter" by (a band I am loving more every second) "Glass Candy".
The sound is warm, sun- drenched, electro-pop and is laced with sugary vocals... just perfect to bounce around to with the top down. Rossini set the song to the band's personal footage from their west coast tour this past summer. And I am loving the cactus silhouettes against the dessert skyline. Check it out below:
Sold-out show at The Music Box
I don't just love M83 because they are french but also because of their huge arena sound. This new album 'Hurry Up, We're Dreaming' is loaded with heavenly synthesizers and 80's nostalgia that creates the dreamy, spacey feeling that Anthony Gonzales was no doubt going for with this album. Zola Jesus, who is really making waves in the music world lately, is featured on the album's Intro and was on stage last night with tangible energy.
The slow and steady build of tracks 'Midnight City' and 'Raconte Moi Une Histoire' (translates to Tell Me a Story) are reminiscent of tripping on hallucinogens. The story, told by a little girl, is of a tiny frog in the forest that if you touch, can make your whole world turn upside down. As the story unfolds, the music escalates and is amplified with bubbly guitar rifts that become even more uplifting than the fairytale she tells.
In the track "Echoes of Mine" an old lady tells of walking through a forest of her souvenirs. She looks down at her hands and she is 20 years old again. She sees that the trees are people she has known and she is overcome with love for them. She must be in heaven. Just like we all felt we were last night at The Music Box.
'Baby Says' is taken from The Kills fourth studio album 'Blood Pressures' which was released in April 2011. Alison Mosshart has the kind of voice that gives me chills, like I'm standing on the edge of a cliff. Like I'm scared to jump but I know I'll do it anyway. She's got a confidence in her voice that carries thrill and suspense and excitement. And with Jamie to anchor the songs, The Kills are sailing ahead to perfection.
Justine Freeman has an ear for music and an eye for style. Her father is a musician who started playing as a teenager with Jim Morrison and later toured around Europe with his band for 8 years. Needless to say, she heard a lot of rock growing up, (and not nearly enough disco!) Justine also spent time with her grandmother listening to experimental, minimalist music by composers such as La Monte Young and Phillip Glass. This has helped to shape her appreciation for emerging artists and she continues to scour the music scene for current releases that she finds noteworthy.