Archive for April 2011
Twit One is no twit when it comes to classic sounding instrumental hip hop. The Cologne, Germany producer dropped his record Stepping Stones earlier this month.
It’s a collection of really short beats, the longest one clocking in at about two and a half minutes. Each one leaves you wanting more the way each of J Dilla’s Donuts did. It’s a clever way to get you to listen over and over.
All Twit’s beats are straightforward, smooth, and funky. Unlike many of his German contemporaries, he goes light on the synth work and sticks to instrument samples.
The cover of Stepping Stones depicts a day at summer camp, and that’s exactly the vibe of the record. It’s a relaxing instrumental listen that gets a little sentimental at times, kind of like Nightmares on Wax’s Carboot Soul or Blockhead’s Music By Cavelight.
Hear Zuelpicher Blues, the longest track on the record, below.
With a name like Boom Clap Bachelors, you’d expect some jump up and party music from this Danish trio. Instead, they give you certifiable hammock music somewhere between Air and Boards of Canada.
Each song on their new EP Mellem Dine Læber (which translates to “Between Your Lips”) is a gentle breeze, with wispy vocals laid over. These bachelors love their orchestral sounds, and most of the claps they use sound like light rain.
Fans of bossa nova and downtempo like Savath and Savalas will dig this record, five tracks of soft beats and singing in Danish.
There’s really nothing more mellow than this. It sounds like clouds.
Hear all of Mellem Dine Læber below.
Ana San is collective consisting of four beatmakers from sunny Santa Ana, California. Inspired by the sounds of LA’s Low End Theory, Mezzo, Ages, DTCPU, and Barefoot Shrubs began creating beats, and each of them has dropped an EP or two of instrumental gems.
The newest gold from the crew is Mezzo’s Why Not Nothing EP, a collection of low tempo (and occasionally no tempo) songs composed of textured drones and mystery drum sounds.
The cryptic melodies come together in a piecemeal way, echoing a lot of sounds coming out of LA today, but keeping the mood darker than what you’ve heard before.
All proceeds from Why Not Nothing will be donated to Japan Tsunami & Earthquake Relief efforts.
Get the album here and hear a track below.
Gilles Peterson’s mission in life is to shed light on great music no matter the genre or sound, and his label Brownswood Recordings is designed to take this concept to new heights. Brownswood electr*c 2 is the second in a series of compilations unearthing electronic producers from around the world who stand out in their format.
Brownswood just posted a sample mix of Brownswood electr*c 2 a few days ago and the list is packed with brilliant souls from around the world. Perth, Manchester, Vancouver, San Francisco, Lugano, London… the list goes on. The music ranges from dubstep and two step to genres of bass music yet unnamed.
Hear the sampler below and keep an eye out for this comp.
It’s called “turbo crunk” and it’s sweeping the nation. And by nation, I mean Canada.
For some time, Lunice has been our favorite Montrealer rehashing hip hop style from the American south into something fresh. A few of his collaborators have begun appearing on the radar as well. Today, we’ve got Hovatron for you.
Hovatron just dropped Hovatron EP, a single packed with three original tracks and a few remixes, including renditions by Sixtoo (as Prison Garde), Spoek Mathambo, and Doshy. The remixes mimic Hovatron’s affinity for 808s and classic synths, and his knack for minimalism. In the tradition of crunk beats, simplicity reigns in turbo crunk productions. Of course, Hovatron’s sound takes crunk to unconventional places; it’s doubtful that Lil’ Jon ever used a Korg MS-20.
Hear Hovatron EP below.
Scottish-Egyptian producer Kutmah remains in exile in the UK, and he’s still getting mad work done there. Just a couple of days ago, he posted a 49 minute Sketchbook mix of Madlib’s unreleased instrumentals that he made on his birthday earlier this month.
This collection of beats encompasses the many personalities of Madlib, from his golden-age-sounding jazz sampled beats to his caricatures of mainstream production, and everything in between. That includes a couple of minutes of weird noise repetition and the incorporation of really odd soul lyrics on a few beats.
The selections are all of typical Madlib quality, and Kutmah does a nice job of mixing them. Press play below when you’ve got a free hour to bob your head.
He’s got an abrasive name, but Boxcutter’s songs are a futuristic take on jazz, funk, and fusion. The Northern Ireland producer got picked up by Mike Paradinas’ Planet Mu for his garage and two-step infused beats. The tracks from his newest album The Dissolve are for more organic, sounding more like a band than a single producer at times.
A couple of these tracks will remind you of the good old days of down tempo, led by the sounds of Jazzanova and 4Hero: crisp drums, syncopated rhythms, and sustained key chords. Others kick back to Boxcutter’s affinity for two-step. The bulk of the tracks, however, are fully electronic and packed with bass. But this is all a little more clever than what gets played at clubs and warehouse parties.
Check out the video for “TV Troubles” below and see where Boxcutter got the image for the cover art for “The Dissolve.” Sabrina Ratte’s video kicks back to the color saturated 80s for this track.
“No other artist would ever describe themselves as being Fancy,” says Fancy Mike, who never specifies exactly where he’s from more specifically than “Midwest.”
Fancy Mike grew up without the means to make his own beats, despite his love for instrumental music. His own sound is cinematic, as dark as it is sentimental. The beats don’t mince around trying to throw you off. Instead they plow forward with on-the-beat precision at BPM counts high and low.
Sigma Chi Primavera, Mike’s second album, just dropped a week ago. The track list shows off some of his collaborations; guys who are pretty obscure, unless of course you’ve been following Iggy’s taste in electronic music. Pixelord, Montgomery Clunk, and Bugseed are a few familiar names on the album.
Offbeat cowbells? Synth leads? Womp womps? Sounds like a couple of cats in Korea have been feeding their brains the same stuff served in LA.
Producers Simo and Mood Schula are producers from Seoul, Korea, a neighborhood of the world known more for painstakingly pretty boy and girl pop groups. But this music is no tween bait. This month, the duo dropped a release of instrumental heat called Simo & Mood Schula EP, combining the bass heavy beat stylings of Simo with Mood Schula’s slow minimal sound infused with traditional Korean instruments.
Learn more about the record here.