Twang may not necessarily be in vogue these days, but lilting songs about growing old and broken hearted always seem to strike a universal nerve no matter the genre or locale from which they hail. Dougie Poole came from Providence to New York, originally crafting dissonant tunes that took cues from R. Stevie Moore and Arthur Russell, and took them into his own melancholy direction. But noise and anonymity eventually had a ceiling for Poole, and more earnest songwriting began to take shape, and that's how we arrive at something beautiful like "Less Young but as Dumb." The lyrical content of the song is right there in the title, casting a disintegrated Roy Orbison pallette in the modern age, tossing traditional country tropes aside in favor of modern delusion, coping, and loss. It starts like a lament playing in a broken jukebox, before the weirdness and vulnerability of it all places it firmly in today's world.
"Less Young but as Dumb" is taken from Poole's forthcoming LP Wideass Highway, out February 17 on JMC Aggregate. Poole is playing a record release show that day at Shea Stadium, Brooklyn, with Wolvves; tickets are here.
Prince Rama has never been a band driven primarily by technicality. "We are not thinking a lot of thoughts," vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Taraka Larson said. "Just a lot of emotions." It's true-- Prince Rama's new single comes at the end of a very emotional week, musically, with the passage of David Bowie taking most off guard at the top of Monday. Prince Rama's music has always shared a Bowie lineage, a cross between big room anthems of a familiar thing like "Heroes," or the introverted freakshow of , as performed by a pep rally on LSD. That leads into Rama's second single, "Now is the Time of Emotion," where all of the above meet collide in a giddy three minute freakout, emulation like, as drummer (and sister) Nimai Larson put, "like when spring comes, and you can't take all your layers off fast enough." Queue this one for when the thaw hits.
"Emotion" is taken from Prince Rama's forthcoming record, Xtreme Now, due March 4 on Carpark. AdHoc is hosting its release at Baby's All Right on March 4th.
The band will also be embarking on a North American tour to support, dates for which are available to take a gander at after the jump.
The Brooklyn techno underground is perhaps in the healthiest, most adventurous state its ever been, which is all the more reason to pause and kick back when you throw on Sol Aire's newest, "Mind." Pulled from the producer's latest five-track Mood II. Sol Aire's looking ahead and and backward at the same time, eschewing the current trend of dusty techno for his own, soulful voice. And by "soulful" I don't mean "R&B-influenced," even though the ghosts of Crystal Waters and Black Box are kicking around in there somewhere, but moreso because he's a master of evoking that moment when the club is at its peak, and you can't see anything else but the person right in front of you. "Mind" is a patient, powerful mixture of Bunker vibes with a dozen cosmic flavors that somehow manages to be tight while feeling much longer than its five minute runtime.
Mind II is out digitally tomorrow on Purple Trax. Sol Aire will be celebrating its release at the latest Purple Trax label night at Bushwick's Bossa Nova Civic Club on December 20.
“We know who he is now and nobody could be who he is.” - RP Boo on RP Boo
There are several stories that never get old no matter how many times they're told, especially the one where a soon-to-be vet walks into a party and sees a kid named Rashad wheeling out nothing but homemade bangers and dropping everything to go, "WHO is THAT?" Admittedly, it's daunting and humbling to ask an originator anything. So naturally, at some point during our conversation with Kavain Wayne Sr., better known as RP Boo, it turned away from history, technique, and wisdom towards something even better: snacks. What do you like to eat late at night when you're working, tracking out, or killing time? For RP Boo, there had better be a pint of ice cream laying around. If not, there's always Pringles, and hopefully not a trail of crumbs leading back to the studio after.
Meet RP Boo, the man who is now being credited more and more as the innovator of footwork, forming the sound that has hooked so many young dance music fans and old heads the world over. Boo is getting ready for his tour around the world, courtesy of On the Sly and years of hard work. It's been a monster year for the producer already, with a retrospective EP of what is now being considered the first footwork tracks ever made (Classics Vol. 1) and an absolutely killer full-length (Fingers, Bank Pads & Shoe Prints), both released on Planet Mu earlier this summer. What makes footwork so unique at this point in time is that even though it's all over the four corners of the globe, the sound's following is still, all things considered, relatively small, with a ferocious innovativeness that is only matched by its energy. But it was RP Boo who laid the blueprint for the generation of footwork producers we have now, and his influence lies mainly in the rhythm. Now just the drums, but how you use them with everything else.
Summer's not over yet. NYC's Teklife outpost Tripletrain snuck out their latest earlier this morning, the first full plate of tracks since last year's Lights of the City. Unlike the glorious city they call home, their sound has gotten (even) more approachable and economical in the time since. That's not to say the group's lost their hunger: Drew Conley (DJ DBK) and Eddie Sergi (DJ Mel Gibson) have made a plethora of influence-expanding moves over the past year, spinning with the likes of club misfits Rushmore and Machine Girl, while keeping both feet firmly planted in the Teklife family across gigs and releases.
Sergi notes this thing boasts "a wide range of our style and exploration into footwork music." He's right about that: check out the duo making bolder moves and pushing their jazz influences even further out there, as seen on the rolling piano that keeps the dubbed out "Too Obsessed" grounded hard on the floor, or the one-two punch of chilled freakouts that close up the EP, featuring appearances from Manny, Earl, and Taso. And as always, if nothing else it's just fun as hell to listen to.
Preview This is Tripletrain in full below. The EP is available for download or purchase here.
Since 2010, Lisbon-bred texture conoisseur MMMOOONNNOOO-- aka Daniel Neves-- has been working within a pallette that's gotten more stark and anxious as the decade passes. There's good reason for this: after toiling away for a number of years, Neves was eventually selected to be part of RBMA in Tokyo last year. The results of his trip paid off dividends, with Neves channeling his nervousness of travel and performance into tracks that are now much more raw with emotion, often cutting off just before the pressure boils over.
That's to be expected, though: the producer's always mined territory that would feel right slotted up against this year's offerings from PAN, filed down to just the edges and supported by an orphaned bass line from something like Flying Lotus' Los Angeles. With this, we've got something like the steathily foreboding "Preliminary Functions," a concise tune that battles muzzled growls with a tense, irregular heartbeat for a kick drum.
Neves just released The Act in Between for Speaker Footage, the young offshoot of Phinery. In the meantime, check out "Preliminary Functions" below.
Welcome to the best boss fight you've never played. Machine Girl's M.O. ever she came into the fold as part of Dred Collective last year has always been to find a way to splice breakbeats of the funky and Amen kind into technicolor things that sound lifted from a dummied out stage from Streets of Rage. Now the NYC-based host-body's got a new split coming out on weirdo AdHoc fave Orange Milk, and b-side "Lillith" is a trip. The drums and split-second vocal snips come at you from every way, but the main anchor is like that gorgeous synth line backing the whole up. Someone put this on the final stage of a game, stat.
"Lillith" is taken from Gemini, which drops July 3 via Orange Milk, appropriately just in time for the fireworks.
With all the heady business coming out of the dronerockstew that makes up Brooklyn's Fire Talk label, it's easy to underestimate the solo work of the imprint's founder, Trevor P. Compared to all the ruckus that he brings to something like Woodsman, Trevor's productions as Gem Trails often turns itself completely inward, riding a tone or drone until you start to pick up on a quiet pulse. Gem Trails' forthcoming full-length Apartments for Lucy literally adds one to the mix, as seen on the gorgeous "Aux Meadow." The tune gives his music a lift by throwing in more substantial low-end never seen before, and the hand-programmed drums turn what could be a headphones-only affair into something more playful and ever-so-slightly extroverted. It's all there in the title.
Apartments for Lucy is out July 14 via Fire Talk. The record will be available on lathe, CS, and digital. Full details can be found here.
If Leland Jackson's Cakedog alias has shown anything over the past year, it's history and texture. Since last year's still-slept on Menace in the Phantom, it's been mighty neat to watch this side of the Ahnnu coin flip into something invigorating while also being conscious of all that's inspired it. It's hard to pin down where any of Jackson's tracks are going to go because the way he works a sample and a bass line is always fluid (see "Climb on Top"); but it's easy to spot where they came from: Bangs & Works, battle tracks, the CRACK comps. Cakedog is increasingly evolving into a project that sits somewhere between the grittiness of pre-Welcome to the Chi footwork and delicious comfort food. "Let that Shit Bang" puts all that under a microscope: vocals, kicks, and snares pop in and out like vinyl cracks, but the actual dance portion stays constant. Oh, and the question of what that guitar sample actually is will keep you hunting for days.
"Let That Shit Bang" is out now on the EP O.T.K., released on TAR, the Brainfeeder satellite helmed by PDBY. Check it out below.
Extraterrestrial imagery, and all the glances into uncharted territory it implies, runs wild throughout the music of North Americans, the solo project of Los Angeles-based Patrick McDermott, who also runs Driftless Recordings. "Lux" is taken from Legends, the moniker's second voyage, and it's a multi-tiered, densely constructed work. The majority of Legends was recorded throughout McDermott's 2014 travels, often when he was just on the brink of falling asleep, using that fine edge between consciousness to focus on crafting overwhelming sounds that drift between Pop-indebted drones and surf-tinged New Age. As the majority of the tunes began to form, the imagery that goes with it takes on a life of its own. To visualize the phenomenon McDermott drafted Ryan "Ghostdad" Sciano to make a video game entitled Legends as well, taking the music of the album and giving a hefty dose of the uncanny valley.