Praveen & Benoît came together over the course of two years to pull together songs that eventually became the album, Songs Spun Simla. This is a minimally produced track with echoing nature sounds & eerie production work accompanied by flourishing vocal melodies, which frankly all together just screams for a remix! That’s not to say the original isn’t beautiful, it just so happens that minimalist tracks often make the best candidates for beat injections, & Machine Drum is just the person to helm that role. Machine Drum’s tracks are scattered-IDM type joints, yet still harmonious, always managing to strike that perfect balance between the dance floor & a straight chill-lounge. “Embers” now has a solid head-nodding beat, while still keeping a nice downtempo vibe.
Deastro started recording music at the age of 17, experimenting with any instruments he could get his hands on. He has recorded three albums full of self-recorded material, but his forthcoming record, Moondagger, is his first live-band recording. Chabot has been captivating audiences in his Michigan area hometown through his energetic live show, and following performances at this year’s SXSW festival. With the release of Moondagger on June 23, Deastro’s following will only grow. If you’ve never heard Deastro, then “Parallelogram” is the most beautiful introduction. The song’s sweeping fantasy-like synth-harmonies will win over you pretty-shoegazey-electronic music fans right off the bat, and when the vocals kick in, you indie-pop fans will be on board in no time.
I lost track of Fischerspooner for a while. I never snubbed to their output; they just gave me the impression that they could never quite live up to the aesthetic they were aiming for. (Toploading #1 with "Emerge" and "Sweetness" screams "electroclash!," but the clash part of it fell out of that disc about 8 songs too early.) Maybe, maybe, maybe "Supply and Demand" is proof that Entertainment is going to be their awakening. It doesn't try to trash pop music, an endeavor which has left previous cuts underdistorted on the other end - it is pop now, and it makes no apologies for its simplification. If you wrote Fischerspooner off, this could very well be the track that convinces you to let them back into your life. Or at least your killer pop playlist at your next house party.
Label Spotlight: XL Recordings
2008 saw XL supersized, with massively successful releases from Vampire Weekend, Grammy winning songbird, Adele and not to mention the renewed saturation of MIA's "Paper Planes" (thank you/curse you Jay-Z and Seth Rogan!). Of course 2008 included a slew of other lesser-known artists who put forth amazing albums, including two of my personal faves, the debut album from M83/DFA inspired Friendly Fires, and Spanish lo-fi fuzzy-pop artists, El Guincho, who released their second album, Alegranza, on XL imprint Young Turks.
Artist Feature: BLK JKS
BLK JKS began their mission almost a decade ago in Johannesburg, South Africa. Co-founded by Lindani "Linda" Buthelezi (vocals/guitar) and Mpumi Mcata (guitar), BLK JKS did not form their current line-up until some five years ago, adding Molefi Makananise (bass) and Tshepang Ramoba (drums) to round out the rhythm section. From there, they happily played shows where anyone would let them, whether it be a friend's living room in Soweto or the Apartheid museum in Johannesburg. But, after a chance encounter with a journalist from The Fader, a brief meeting at an airport with Diplo, a manager delivered to their doorstep, and a record deal with the venerable Secretly Canadian, the world can finally discover this amazing band.
Batch of Tracks: March '09
Find everything that went up for the whole month of March. Download individual songs or listen to the whole batch in one playlist.