Panda Eyes, Barely Alive, and Virtual Riot smash their new collab, ‘Triforce’

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panda eyes virtual riot

Panda Eyes, Barely Alive, and Virtual Riot team up for the glittery dubstep collaboration, “Triforce.” With video game synths, happy horns, lush keys, and twinkling arpeggios, the track starts off in a blissful state before shifting towards the dark side. There’s a stark contrast between the verse and hook, using a Skrillex-esque vocal build that unwinds into old-school dubstep.

Panda Eyes makes his Disciple Records debut alongside label alumni, Barely Alive and Virtual Riot. Each combine their gritty bass sound design to create this headbanging oasis of unadulterated joy and grit.

The 22-year-old Swiss bass producer teamed up with dubstep veterans in anticipation of his Isolation EP. Barley Alive and Virtual Riot are regular collaborators, so adding Panda Eyes to the mix must be a nod to the label newcomer.

Photo Credit: @officialpandaeyes/Instagram

Introducing Dorfex Bos: A rising underground bass talent talks inspirations, collaborative hopefuls, and his penchant for low-end vibrations in debut ‘Opinions’ EP [Interview + EP Review]

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Who exactly is Dorfex Bos?

Dorfex Bos may not be a household name in electronic dance music, nor may he ever wish to be. However, the Madison House-signee is one name in underground bass that we’ve been keeping tabs on here at Dancing Astronaut since appearing on Bassnectar‘s tenth full-length studio album, Into the Sun, back in 2015.

“Lorin [Ashton] is an absolute beast. He’s a genius,” Dorfex Bos told us in a recent interview. “I’ve never met someone with such a clear vision of what they wanted and the skills to make it happen so fully.”

Dorfex Bos is Angelo Tursi, an artist emerging from the early 2000s West Coast bass scene. His music is easily discernible by its eclectic, heavy sound stamp that weaves together elements of lush downtempo, dubstep, and left-field electronica.

But, like most free form bass music artists, don’t ask Dorfex Bos to force himself into any narrowly-defined categories. “I don’t really identify completely with any genres,” Tursi says of his experimental sound. “I’m known for making deep, trippy, cinematic tracks that I guess is considered ‘bass music,’ but I’m not really trying to put myself in that box.”

The Brooklyn-based beatmaker further alluded to the bass music genre as one that is as loose and expansive as it is subversive and very much open to creative interpretation:

“I feel like ‘bass music’ as a genre is very much solely focused on the body experience. I like to weave in a melodic and harmonic element that takes the whole experience a little deeper. My music has [an] emotional flavor that I feel is missing from a lot of ‘bass music.’ “


Dorfex Bos plays the Incendia Stage at Okeechobee, Florida, 2018. Photo courtesy of Madison House.

“Okeechobee was absolutely bonkers. I was set to play a smaller, late night stage…and there were a few thousand people there. It was a beautiful sight. It was a super tight, deep set.”


Dorfex Bos is known by many for his iconic collaborations with Bassnectar, including the self-titled track “Dorfex Bos,” which first appeared in 2004 on Diverse Systems of Throb, along with “Horizons” and “Other Worlds“— two mind-melding numbers that appeared on the recently-released Reflective EP.

“Our last two collaborations, ‘Horizons’ and ‘Other Worlds,’ were made in my bedroom studio on two separate occasions. We would start playing with ideas and very quickly a very clear and defined sound would emerge. It’s crazy making music with him because I have to keep in mind that tens of thousands of fans are going to experience these tracks in arenas and stadiums and you have to think about how they are going to sound in huge venues. It’s different than writing music for clubs. It’s a bit of a mind fuck.”

Recently signed to the Boulder-based powerhouse booking and management firm, Madison House — who also represent electronic music careers of Bassnectar, Clozee, Crywolf, Golfclap, Mt. Eden, Polish Ambassador, The String Cheese Incident, William Black, among many more — Dorfex Bos now brings his debut EP, Opinions, to the table. He is poised to stand alone as a new power player within his area of expertise.


“This EP is very special to me. Each track encompasses a specific and unique combination of mood and groove.”


The four-track project is an aural representation of a roundtable discussion on the sheer eclecticism and diversity of sound within the underground bass music scene. Rather than a cohesive journey of musical story-telling, what Tursi is laying down in his Opinions EP is a track-by-track catalog of playful sonic surprises with ever-evolving synth patterns, broken beats, and newly emerging bass lines around every turn. Perhaps no one puts it better than Tursi on his Opinions EP:

“It feels like a cocoon-deep welcoming, charged with just the right kind of rhythmic energy to keep it moving forward into the unknown. It’s music made for dimly lit dance floors or late night car rides down empty highways.”

Tursi’s auspicious sound sits on the horizon of where bass music is heading: It’s a purview into another world, catalyzed by a full-bodied, all-encompassing listening experience. Opinions serves as his artistic vessel into charting this plane: It’s a sonic mosaic that Dorfex Bos pieces together layer by layer, bit by bit, through each of his meticulously-crafted productions.

Take the EP’s eponymous leading track — a stunning, yet jarring composition laced with a sounds often mirrored by Bassnectar himself in his recent work. Complete with gritty electro-style synths, robust, grounding basslines, and highs that resemble the emergency sirens of a national weather warning system, it resembles an aerial adventure through hypnotic sound fx“It’s so big and expansive, it feels like you’re soaring on the back of a dragon very high up in the sky and you can feel the wind whipping through your hair,” says Tursi of “Opinions.”

 

Building upon the steady momentum set by the EP’s beginning, “Teen $pirit” begins much lighter with a keen focus on arpeggiated chords and captivating toy-box synth work. After the song’s first drop is where the intensity culminates into a more foreboding mood; yet, with the continuous use of light-hearted synths, users need not be apprehensive in giving themselves over to the song’s darker elements.

 

“Cyalafalora” subsumes the EP’s most mysterious appeal. Laid across an experimental landscape, the track features outer space bass elements, retro 1980s synths, like something out of Stranger Things, and laidback tones that allows the listener to explore the unmapped terrain of the human psyches. Upon the song’s second drop, Dorfex Bos takes a complete 180-degree turn into what sounds like a completely different song. 

 

Finishing off the EP is “Ralph’s Dance,” complete with a dark, anthemic quality that only Dorfex Bos can replicate. It catapults listeners into a side show circus tent, as if one is lining up to watch a traveling freak show somewhere in an arid desert county in the 1950s. 

 

In short, Dorfex Bos’ breakout EP is a statement of what is to come from the rising artist. Though eclectic as ever, that isn’t to say that the EP is disjointed by any means. For Opinions features a unique, experimental, and amorphous sound so as to explore the deeper possibilities of free form bass. “It’s thick, it’s bouncy, it’s deep, it’s dreamy,” says Tursi.

Dorfex Bos plays the Incendia Stage at Fractal Beach, Florida, 2018. Photo courtesy of Dorfex Bos.

“I wanted to present a mini-journey of what Dorfex currently represents and what I’m doing in my live sets — which is [using] very big, expansive beats with a mysterious, almost haunting, narrative running through it.”

Still in the early development phase, Dorfex’s live show is a rollercoaster ride of raw, undefined emotion and low-end frequencies that incorporates original tracks from Tursi’s sizable back catalog of music. Visually, there is still much left to map out for the young artist: “Up to this point, I have been the sole designer of all Dorfex visual art. I enjoy having a lot of creative control over how my work is presented. But I do look forward to collaborating with the right artist in the future if that magical synergy is there.”

“The live show is very me in that it will be an interesting dichotomy of ‘dark’ and ‘light’ imagery.”

Tursi’s approach to his live experience is laced with the kind of DIY sensibility that runs deep within the spirit of the underground bass scene. It is a sense for which he also takes cues from Tipper, whom he has opened for in the past, and Bassnectar, who he will open for during night two of Freestyle Sessions. On playing the upcoming event, which will be full culty bass heads:

“I’m super excited for Freestyle Sessions! I’m playing on ‘Dreamtempo’ night so it’s going to be a dreamy, bouncy set. I’m not really nervous about it, a lot of Bassnectar fans come out to my shows and they are usually super engaged and excited about me playing.”

As for his other upcoming appearances throughout the year, Dorfex Bos is also booked as direct support for The Glitch Mob on their new album-accompanying world tour, dubbed “Blade 2.0,” a interactive live music spectacle with visuals powered by Dell and an immersive VR experience from Strangeloop Studios.

“I’ve been friends with Ooah and Boreta for a very long time, about 15 years,” Tursi explained matter of factly. “They got in touch with me because their original support Elohim was unable to do [one particular] date.”

Dorfex Bos was beaming at the opportunity to play on The Glitch Mob’s cutting-edge stage set-up. “It’s a game-changer,” alluded Tursi. “I very quickly said yes because I know they have a very open-minded fanbase that would be down to go on the Dorfex journey, which is going to lean a little on the cerebral.”

With mentors like Tipper, Bassnectar, and The Glitch Mob — each with their clearly-defined respective sounds, and their shared roots in psychedlica and new-age spiritualism — there is no doubt that Dorfex Bos is one breakout artist whose climbing the swift ladder to success. Not only is he set to expand the sonic worlds of the three aforementioned artists, who all share a similar musical flavor, as well as crossover fanbases, DA asked what other artists made Tursi’s list of collaborative hopefuls.

“I’d love to work with Four Tet… he’s been a big inspiration to me for years. I’d love to make something with Potions (of the Lab Group)… he has such an amazing sense of sound design. Some other names I’d like to throw out on my collab wishlist… ELWD, Nils Frahm, EPROM, Oneohtrix Point Never, FlyLo, and Björk.”


So what exactly is a Dorfex Bos?

“I like my audience to experience ‘feels,’ and not just solely a beat to bang their heads to. It’s a fully sensory experience.” – Angelo Tursi

Tursi conjured up his moniker from a wildly imaginative place. The root, “Dorfex,” refers to some imaginary rural county in the British countryside, complete with lush rolling hills and dew-filled forests; the stem, “Bos,” he’s always thought about in terms of a fantasy computer-coded language. Juxtaposing the two creates a kind of elemental synergy — between nature and machine — for the artist. It’s a space Tursi says he enjoys dwelling in, both mentally and physically.

As for Dorfex Bos’ vibrant future, 2018 has much in store for the Brooklyn-based producer, including several more releases and collaborations for which the artist remained rather vague about going into detail over.

One thing we know for sure of the left-field bass producer is that he has a clearly-marked sound, with a penchant for low-end vibrations, and a definitive map for where he’s going.

 

How this will come to take shape for the audience?

Only time will tell.

 

But Dorfex Bos is not just a moniker, or even a man behind a moniker. According to Tursi, it’s a fully immersive experience: “The Dorfex Bos experience is a balanced combination of bass heavy beats and a rich cloak of melodies and harmonies that feel very much like a film score.”

Cinematic and fully sensory, on the one hand. Heavy, cumbersome, and yet fully palatable, on the other.

Beyond the Booth 013: Carmada give us a taste of their outdoor lives

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Beyond the Booth is a feature dedicated to the hidden side of artists that exists outside electronic music— a side rarely discussed with those outside their immediate circle. We venture “beyond the booth,” so to speak, and dive into their deepest passions that tie into their unique personalities. After some self-introspection, each participant then returns to the booth, providing an exclusive mix for the Dancing Astronaut audience.

L D R U and Yahtzel have an infectious chemistry that has carried them far in their careers. As Carmada, the two have taken the bass world by storm, landing themselves coveted spots on OWSLA, Mad Decent, and the like. They possess a knack for musicmaking and performance that leaves audiences hungering for their presence worldwide — not only in a club setting, but also on stage at reputable festival institutions.

Sometimes, however, absence makes the heart grow fonder — and the music tastier. L D R U and Yahtzel have been focused inward the past couple years, focusing mainly on honing their solo artistry. The break has been beneficial, based off their latest original work, “Ready For It.” Bright, poppy, and tasteful, the Tribes-assisted production signals a new chapter for Carmada.

Who are Carmada outside the music? It turns out, quite the active outdoorsmen. They’re known to be avid campers, even finding time while on tour to sleep under the stars and wake up surrounded by nature. Fans are also invited in on the fun; recently, Camp Carmada unfolded as an almost renegade event, which saw the duo holding an open-invitation camping trip filled with music and “stories around the campfire” with those willing to brave the elements.

Naturally, we had to go deep into camping and all things outdoors with Carmada, getting them to divulge some of their most intriguing tales from times they’ve spent “in the bush,” their favorite camping items, and more.


If you were forced to take only one of these items with you on a camping trip, would you choose: sunscreen, or bug repellent?
Bug spray for sure. Have you ever tried to sleep with 30 mosquitos buzzing around your head? That’s a norm for a balmy Aussie night.

What are the niftiest outdoor tricks/hacks you guys know?
Well, I don’t know if it’s necessarily a trick or hack, but Yahtzel is really good at whipping up a campfire. We went 4wd in a shitty car through the rocky mountains recently, we got a little too confident, went off road and inevitably got the car bogged in about 4ft of snow. There was about 30 minutes of sunlight left and a lot of digging through snow ahead of us. Before any of us even wrapped our head around the situation, Yahtzel had the perfect campfire going. We ended up getting the car-free 2hrs later.

What is the most daring camping endeavor you’ve been on?
The most daring thing I’ve (Yahtzel) ever done camping, was seeing how long I could last in the bush by myself. I stayed out there for six nights; If I didn’t run out of food and water, I would have stayed longer.

Tell us about your funniest memory while camping.
I think the funniest thing I’ve seen camping was my friends first bush poo. I don’t think he realised you need to pull your pants all the way down, because generally when you go number 2, you also go number 1. So poor old Barney had to spend the rest of the night covered in pee.

Between using an actual toilet the first time and taking your first hot shower, which feels the best after a camping trip, in your opinion?
Shower for sure. You don’t have to worry about aiming when peeing outdoors.

Do you have any camping gear brands you prefer in particular? Why?
The Jolly Swagman, if you don’t know what a Swag is here’s a Facebook page we created just for them.

How would you describe your camping preferences? Do you prefer beach camping, backpacking in the forest, taking roadtrips and stopping at parks along the way, etc?
We’re pretty lucky living in Australia in terms of camping options. No matter where you live, you can drive 1-2 hours and be surrounded by bush. I generally take the car and drive ten mins from my family home in Ulladulla and camp in the bush by the beach. For L D R U’s Australian regional tour he hired a massive campervan and drove up and down the east coast of Australia. He would play a show, then his TM would drive to the closest beach, and they would wake up to the sound of the ocean. That’s a cool way to tour.

Have any of you encountered a terrifying wild creature while camping? What did you do to get out of the situation?
Americans always say everything in Australia can kill you and yeah we have snakes and spiders etc. but we don’t have FUCKING Bears, Mountain Lions and Mousse have you seen the size of those things. There bigger than a pickup truck! Back to the question, nothing to our of the ordinary. But my Manager and I did a little bit of bat country skiing in Whistler recently and we stumbled across a heap of fresh bear prints and the next 30 minutes of skiing were petrifying.

Tell us more about Camp Carmada. What sorts of things did you get up to?
Camp Carmada was amazing; we had an open invitation to our fans to come camping with. We played a guerilla bush set to 50 people and sat around the campfire telling stories. I don’t think you could ever recreate that magic.

Finally, the best question: after having such a powerful reunion, what do you two have in the works for the rest of 2018?
We’ve been quiet the last couple of years, working on our solo projects (Yahtzel, L D R U). 2018 is all about Carmada coming back into the spotlight. I think conceptualising/filming the film clip for our recent single “Ready For It” was our favourite. We had stunt actors, car chances, fight scenes and a whole of action. It was great being apart of the process from start to finish and seeing your vision translate to screen. We have a big show at Splendour In The Grass this year, debuting out new show Carmada by LDRU & Yahtzel. I think that is going to be the best show we’ve ever played, can’t wait!

 

Feature image credit: Stacey Queffert

PhaseOne x YOOKiE – State Of Emergency

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Less than a month after releasing a massive remix of Dillon Francis and NGHTMRE on Mad Decent, duo YOOKiE have teamed up with fellow dubstep heavy-hitter PhaseOne for “State Of Emergency.”

Frantic breathing and a ringing phone usher in the track’s introduction, with anguished screams arriving as the build starts to increase. “911, what is your emergency?” leads into a filthy dubstep drop, layered with a hefty dosage of wubs.

From start to finish, “State Of Emergency” is an intensely haunting bass journey, packed with panic and absolutely filthy bass. It will be featured on PhaseOne’s forthcoming EP, Double Up.

Slushii delivers heavy-handed seven-track ‘Find Your Wings’ EP following massive Ultra 2018 performance

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Slushii rukes

It’s been an exciting journey thus far for Slushii. The emerging young beatmaker, born Julian Scanlan, has deservedly settled in as one of the industry’s most lauded new talents after a meteoric breakthrough campaign over the last year and a half. Coming off the heels of a brilliant return to Ultra performing at the Worldwide Stage, Slushii is keeping the momentum high, following up with the release of his brand new Find Your Wings EP.

Blending bass-heavy and euphoric, upbeat melodies with a hint of 8-bit inspiration, plus the use of his own vocals, Slushii has proven to be a force behind the console, showcasing his versilitity on the new collection. Speaking on the new EP, Slushii told Dancing Astronaut, 

“This EP was really a culmination of what I grew up listening to mixed with some of the craziest sound design I think I’ve ever done. Super stoked for peeps to hear it.”

The EP is seven tracks of headbanger-approved dubstep from front to back, culminating on tracks like “Bounce,” a menacing “Fired Up,” and the EP’s lead single “Where I’m At.”  Ultra proved to be a perfect testing ground for Slushii’s new solo products, and between his recent outing in Miami and his debut LP last year, Out of LightSlushii’s upward trajectory seems to be as steep as ever.

The new independent EP, released March 30, is available now on all digital streaming platforms. Showing off his versitile hand in the studio and an ear for heavier sonics than we’re used to from him, enjoy Slushii’s dabble in dubstep on Find Your Wings. 

 Featured Image: Rukes

Ray Volpe releases energetic dubstep EP, ‘No Emotion Allowed’

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Ray Volpe

Hailing from Charlotte, North Carolina, dubstep mastermind Ray Volpe has released a three-track EP, No Emotion Allowed. Each track on the EP showcases a different style of bass music, from grimy riddim to more melodic dubstep. No Emotion Allowed takes listeners on a dark, eerie trip, and with its grueling, cacophonous style, the EP is not intended for the faint-hearted.

The first track on the EP is “Showtime” which features excerpts of distorted vocals, throttles of dissonant layers of bass and synth, and unearthly melodies. “Wet Napkin” does not relent from the crushing sounds that the EP begins with. The second track keeps the intensity going with melodic interludes of more relaxed beats. As “Wet Napkin” builds, the climaxes give way to a tasteful contrast between edgy, rough drops and unexpected, smooth feels. The last track, “Rave Rage,” brings a highly energetic tone to the table. With weighty undertones, and piercing progressions of synths, “Rave Rage” will keep listeners on their toes, waiting for the unexpected.

With his latest release, Ray Volpe has given dubstep lovers around the world an unforgettable experience, as No Emotion Allowed follows the popular dubstep trend while staying on the cutting edge with an original, infectious production.

Getter is done with EDM, and he doesn’t care what you have to say about it

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Getter-Show-10

There comes a time in every artist’s career where what fulfills them creatively begins to place them at odds with what their following desires. For Tanner Petulla, that time has come.

A mainstay in the dubstep scene, Petulla ascended the ranks into bass glory quicker than most under the moniker Getter. He found himself headlining festivals across the world thanks to his hectic sets and otherworldly graphics. His shows and online persona were so infectious, in fact, that a cult following resulted. Most aspiring artists would consider this path a “dream come true;” however, being catapulted into public notoriety where fans had expectations for who he should be and the music he should make was not the case for Petulla.

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As someone who is self described as having “super-advanced, alien-like ADD,” the artist has never been a one-project guy. The goal was never just to launch Getter, become a famous DJ, and put all of his focus into becoming the face of dubstep. In addition to his work under his EDM alias, he is also known for his rapping under alias Terror Reid, and for his clothing line called Shred Collective. Getter has always been a part of his creative output, but as time goes on, an increasingly smaller part.

Petulla found that money, a following, and scoring headlining slots did not equate to personal happiness not long after finding his way into the spotlight. The excitable and enthusiastic persona Getter portrayed was a far cry from his personal truth, and it became harder and harder for him to play the part. Once able to tune out the criticism from fans and friends, he became increasingly bothered, even paranoid, by those around him both on and offline.

“It was like, ‘how about instead of me going out and wondering about everyone talking shit when they really aren’t, why don’t you figure out what is actually wrong?” 

Many underestimate the difficulty of having everything one could ever want, but still being unable to find happiness. As Petulla tried to come to terms with who he was on a personal level, he began to realize that Getter, creatively, was no longer inspiring, or even interesting to him. The word “depression” turned from a condition laced with stigma into his reality, partially rooted in his increasing success with music he didn’t feel represented him anymore. This was juxtaposed with the desire to keep the fans who supported him through his journey happy. As time went on, he realized that he couldn’t feign interest in producing what others wanted anymore. It’s 2018, and his music is a reflection of Tanner Petulla’s creativity, not the fan-facing Getter’s.

“It’s just not my shit anymore if that makes sense. Like, I can’t make something like EDM and be completely stoked on it anymore.” 

When Petulla discusses what he is currently inspired by creatively, dubstep is the practical antithesis:

“I enjoy sound designing and making shit go off live, but I can’t spend more than 2 hours doing that. With calmer type shit, I could spend a 14 hour flight to Australia making that the whole time. If it is more than just partying, that’s when my interest can be held for longer periods of time because I’m not a big partier.”

While he maintains that “Getter” as one of his artist aliases certainly isn’t going anywhere, what fans can come to expect from its output will be drastically different. This began with his release of “Colorblind,” which was a fusion of punk rock, hip hop, and trap music all in one. Though it retained the trap elements that his followers have become accustomed to from past live sets and releases, this was the first of Petulla’s new chapter as a producer. While he has always been open about his appreciation of those who supported him as a dubstep icon, he is no longer entertaining the idea of creating music just to please this fan base.

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Creatively, Petulla has finally found his niche with what he finds inspiring and fulfilling on a profound level. He will be releasing a full album in the coming month, and he notes that it “finally sounds like him.” When asked what that means for him and his legacy in the dubstep scene, his response gives insight into what fans can expect from future releases.

“I wouldn’t say I’m quitting EDM. I’m just kind of graduating. Like you’d never hear my EDM stuff in a movie or a commercial, unless it was a party scene or a race car driving scene. I’m trying to make music that could be in space movies, or a scene where Brad Pitt is making out with Angelina in the fucking rain, you know? Just some pretty shit.”

Getter released a three track EP with Ghostmane in late February called Dahlia I. Those who are only interested in his heavy-hitting bass aren’t likely to resonate with the eclectic collection of rap tracks. While entirely different than Getter’s past releases, Petulla’s style is still apparent —although it is within an entirely different genre of music. This creative transition may alienate some, but will arguably open the door to wider acceptance moving forward.

Many music lovers are simply intrigued by evolving artistry if they appreciate an artist’s core style. Those who resonate with Petulla’s unique flair will certainly never be bored as he continues to experiment with his wide-ranging creative abilities.

 

You have a lot of projects — Terror Reid for rapping, Shred Collective where you design apparel, and then of course, there is Getter. Do certain moods evoke certain creative projects for you?
I’m weird, and I just want things to go a certain way, so instead of trying to go to someone else and get help and move forward with something, I want to do everything on my own. I’m kind of just planting seeds with things like Shred or Terror Reid, so that someday when it’s like ‘oh something crazy happened with Shred,’ then everything is going to blow up. Or say something crazy happens with Terror Reid, everything will blow up. I kind of just want to have a bunch of bombs planted so that once one of them goes off, the rest of them will go off.

Are you aligned with any one of these aliases more than the other?
There was a good three or four month chunk when I made like eight Terror Reid songs, and then there was like a good three or four month chunk when I wanted Shred Collective to be a big super dope hype brand. So basically it’s like super-advanced alien like ADD that I have. Which basically works because then I have a ton of shit going on, and I don’t have to worry about not being busy.

You’ve been open about your depression. Is depression something you have always dealt with? Do you think being a public facing figure actually impacted this more?
I feel like if you’re a young person nowadays, you’re definitely affected by it, and you’re probably confused by it. Like a lot of people, including myself, you don’t want to put yourself in the same category with mental illness because then you feel weird, and it makes everything worse because you are confused, and don’t want to believe that it’s that. At least for me, it was easier for me to be like, ‘okay it’s a possibility,’ and being self-conscious about it was worse for me. Then it was like, ‘how about instead of me going out and wondering about everyone talking shit when they really aren’t, why don’t you figure out what is actually wrong?’

I’m a little more open about it now because it makes it easier to deal with shit with me, and this isn’t a real statistic, but probably 80% of people my age nowadays go through similar shit. Obviously if my face is in different places on the internet with music and videos, I feel like I’m affected a little bit more by it because people don’t see the full me- they only see the good parts because no one wants to follow someone who is fucking depressing all of the time. I feel like the music shit gives me an outlet to deal with it because it’s like ‘Hey, I’m not okay — but check this out.’

Now are you actually writing all of your own lyrics and stuff? Is that a creative outlet for you?
Oh yeah, obviously. “Colorblind” started out as just like a trap song before I put it out, and then I had the metal part of it for a different song. But then I was going next to crazy, and I was freaking out. I wanted to know what was wrong with me and why I couldn’t feel better. I have everything I want, and I was still sad as shit, blah blah blah. I told my mom about it, and she was like, ‘well have you tried writing? Whenever I feel like that, I try to write.’ Then I was like yeah, but diaries are lame, so I wrote those lyrics.

I’m not even kidding — when I left the studio, I felt so much better. Within 30 minutes or an hour. I mean it wasn’t gone, but my album that is going to come out this year is pretty much how my brain has felt the past couple of years. I have been writing it for the past couple of years, but I haven’t been writing it as a coping mechanism until recently. So now it’s like, I can go through and be like, ‘well this song is like this…probably because I felt like this when I wrote it,’ and things like that. It’s interesting. It’s really complicated but it’s interesting.

Can you give us more details on that album? I know you’ve mentioned that “Colorblind” is the only heavy song on the album, but it would be great to have more details on that. 
There is no release date yet. My birthday is in April, and I was aiming to have it released around then because Friday the 13th is my birthday this year. I feel like it would be kind of cool to have like a calm debut album on everyone’s bad luck day.

This album is like my fucking baby. “Colorblind” wasn’t even supposed to go on it until after I added the metal part and vocals. It was supposed to be a single, but then it was like, okay it’s doing what all of the other ones do. I feel like if people listen to “Colorblind” and fuck with it more than a cool rave song, then they will fuck with the album. You will hear what I am feeling. It’s important. It’s an important album.

So no more dubstep from you?
No. I released an album three years ago called Planet Neutral, which is my name Tanner Petulla mixed up, and it makes Planet Neutral. That was my first take, and I was never going to release it. Then my friend died, and he was the biggest fan of that shit, so ever since he died and I put that out there, I’ve been making shit like that [dubstep].

Now I don’t even like making rave music, or for lack of a better word I guess, EDM. It’s not that I don’t enjoy making it. I enjoy sound designing and making shit go off live, but I can’t spend more than 2 hours doing that. With calmer type shit, I could spend a 14 hour flight to Australia making that the whole time. If it is more than just partying, that’s when my interest can be held for longer periods of time because I’m not a big partier.

Do you see yourself completely quitting EDM? What does this evolution in musical styles look like for you? I know you’ve mentioned you’re done with EDM in the past, but here we are. 
I remember exactly when I said all of that shit. It was around Shaky Beats in Atlanta, and it was the pinnacle of me feeling like shit. I was sad, but I didn’t know why. So it was more just like, me being confused, and fucked up shit going on in my head. So I was like, you know what, I don’t enjoy doing this, so I’m not going to do this. That ended up with everyone including myself being like ‘I’m quitting.’ But you know, I’m always going to make shit like that, even if I don’t put it out.

It’s just not my shit anymore if that makes sense. Like, I can’t make something like EDM and be completely stoked on it anymore. I would compare my shit to other people’s, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I’ll make a song and be like, ‘oh this sounds like Zomboy. Zomboy is way better than me — oh shit. I’m not going to release this.’ Whereas, the other music — it sounds like me, and I am not copying anyone.

I wouldn’t say I’m quitting EDM. I’m just kind of graduating. Like you’d never hear my EDM stuff in a movie or a commercial, unless it was a party scene or a race car driving scene. I’m trying to make music that could be in space movies, or a scene where Brad Pitt is making out with Angelina in the fucking rain, you know? Just some pretty shit.

Exclusive: SoDown unleashes aggressive new anthem, ‘Kill Em’ ft Kyral x Banko

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So Down - Kill Em Album Art for Web High Size

The saxophone playing, bass music producing, adventure fiend from Colorado, SoDown, is stirring up a frenzy in the dance music world for his wickedly unique productions that effortlessly blend a range of genres. The man behind the sax, Ehren Wright, returns to DA for an exclusive debut of his brand new single, “Kill Em,” on which he’s enlisted the help of Denver-based producer duo, Kyral x Banko.
SoDown’s newest single puts Wright’s immense versatility and range on full display. Whereas most of Wright’s past discography begins light-hearted and funky, slowly building to a cleverly deployed — and fearsome — bass drop, “Kill Em” begins with the full force of that same ferocity. Wright utilizes the ominous intros of early US dubstep, complete with dark synths and grimey bass lines, offering a glimpse into the more sinister side of SoDown’s musical package. When Wright introduces deep horns to the mix, the result is a riveting track that sits between heavy head banging music and funky groove appeal.

“Kill em started in a green room at an after party in Denver. Before long it had taken on a life of its own, morphing into an epic full on banger sent from the depths of the earth. We hope you enjoy listening to it as much as we enjoyed making it,” Wright tells DA of the track.

One thing that is the result of SoDown’s uniquely style of bass music and his keen ear for sound design: this is one producer to watch out for over the coming years. With sold out shows in Denver’s most popular venues, to opening at Red Rocks, Wright may be the next big thing to come out of Colorado. SoDown brings his live show back on March 3, 2018 to headline The Ogden Theatre (Denver, CO) with support from Buku, ProbCause and Homemade Spaceship.

Bear Grillz – Drop That

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bear grillz

For years, the EDM world speculated over the identity of nonsensical Firepower producer, Bear Grillz, setting the scene ablaze. He  first turned heads in 2013 after he was featured smoking a joint, and middle finger erect. It wasn’t until 2016 when he took to none other than  Jerry Springer to unveil the man behind the cartoon bear.

The Bear Grillz phenomenon has grown a cult-like following based around his outlandish persona and fondness for trolling EDM and its off-the-wall culture, most notably in his breakout track “EDM,” within which a girl exclaims she’s just “died a little bit inside” because her friend didn’t know what dubstep was.

His newest track, “Drop That” is not for the faint of dub-devotees. It’s thrashing guitar riffs, heavy metal death growls, and pounding snares are likely to assemble hair-whipping riots near and far.

 

Ganja White Night explore the dynamic depths of low end bass in seventh LP, ‘The Origins’ [Interview + Album Review]

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ganja white night the origins 500x500

Who exactly is Mr Wobble?

It’s question that has been on the minds of many since Ganja White Night released a series of music videos late last year. One that has answers partly in the release of their newest and most ambitious album to date, dubbed The Origins, out now on their own imprint SubCarbon Records

“We created SubCarbon when we started making music because it was the only way we could be released. Big labels weren’t interested in our sounds.” 

 February 2018 saw Benjamin Bayeul and Charlie Dodson’s seventh LP since they extensively explored their riddim-inspired sound almost 12 years ago. “We’ve tried to release an album every year since we started in 2010,” said the two Brussels-based producers. They wanted to do everything but rush The Origins album, which the pair had been working on since the fall of 2016, so as to avoid making the twelve track compilation more than just a shallow “collection of easy-to-mix tracks.” 

Photo courtesy of Ganja White Night

The Origins LP is anything but shallow. The album takes a deep dive in many ways.

First, it’s a dive into re-examining their own roots; a new exploration of the hypnotic, immersive sounds that incapsulated fans many years ago. Cinematic intros, playful experimentation, and otherworldly sounds mark the album’s landscape. In a lot of ways, The Origins is an intoxicating ethnic journey with a careful sense of adventure — a psychedelic trip into the worlds of dub, riddim, and low-end bass, more broadly.

Speaking to the evolution of their signature wobble sound, the duo elaborated on how it took them a good amount of time to manifest their ideas into reality: “You can really feel a difference when you listen to our old albums. Sound techniques evolve and the new material sounds more refined. We always had these ideas in our heads, but it’s crazy to see how ideas develop over time into actual sounds.”

 

Second, the album signals a nod to the roots of Mr Wobble, an animated vigilante superhero character designed by long-time collaborator and illustrator Ebo. Mr Wobble has played a role in their work since they released “Wobble Master” and “LFO Requiem.” At the outset of the new LP, he is joined by a whole new cast of characters whereby fans are given a glimpse into the very origins of how their super powers came to be.

“Mr Wobble isn’t the only guy who has the power. In different civilizations, the people receive this power, and what we see in the [Origins] video is how, in this period, of this era, at least, Mr Wobble is using it this way. We still don’t know where this power comes from, or how he’s be chosen, maybe it was an accident, we don’t know.”

 

Finally, the album pulls on the nostalgic allure of ancient ethnocentric sounds. Inspired by composers like Hans Zimmer, Ganja White Night has a way for constructing cinematic bass compositions that incorporate reggae, dubstep, hip-hop, and drum ‘n’ bass, with influences from the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Latin America. “We have some inspirations that never change,” they say. “We’ve always been fans of ethnic sounds and ethnic voices, long intros, harmonies.”

GWN approaches collaborations in the same artistic spirit. Teaming up with Caspa, in particular, on the album’s second track, “Unique,” the three producers capture the very unique essence upon which their collective visions for bass music resonates — back before the days of violent, head banging “bro-step.” Cinematic, fun, mischievous, and stripped down to the bare bone essentials of bass, the track flips fluidly between it’s melodic breaks and stabbing synths for a hypnotic anthem that is sure to capture fans’ eardrums on the dance floor.

Ganja White Night on their “Mr Wobble Is Back” tour stop, 8/5/16. Photo cred: Brew City Bass

From cosmic introductions to intense party jams and downtempo grooves, the twelve tracks come together to tell a more complete story around Mr Wobble, the superhero who creates music from ancient mythology and uses it to awaken citizens dwelling in the modern world he inhabits. Regarding to expansion of Mr Wobble’s world, Bayeul and Dodson are still exploring the many avenues the vigilante hero may take:

“There is still a lot of mystery, and we don’t want to say too much because we have a lot of projects that we want to go deeper into, we want to do more music videos and comic books. There’s just so many ways to go deeper into the story, there’s a lot of doors open now. We just introduced a lot of characters, so there’s a lot of new avenues to explore.”

The Origins arrives just as Ganja White Night gets ready to embark on their album-accompanying “The Origins Tour.” The duo will travel to 20 US cities featuring strong support from CaspaOpiuoDownlink, along with label mates DirtMonkey and Subtronics. They plan to begin each concert stop with a special B2B DJ set from the SubCarbon roster, before transitioning into the tour openers, and ending with a GWN performance that will feature live instrumentation, editing, remixing, and improvisation much like a band playing all original material.