Drezo‘s formative rise through the west coast’s flourishing underground house and tech scene has been an impressive progression to watch unfold. The LA-based producer has brought his infectiously eerie, warehouse-primed brand of house music to labels like Mad Decent and OWSLA, but for his latest project, he’s taking the full control of the reins with a new independently released EP, Jaded, out in full July 14. To roll out the forthcoming three-track collection, Drezo has dropped off a blistering new original cut titled “Dead.”
In signature Drezo fashion, the track opens with a pumping kick and a textured hum that gradually builds into an aggressive growl leading into the break. The “Guap” producer chops up a characteristically punchy yet simple sample selection on his latest, as “Dead” drops into an oscillating barrage of snarling chords designed for packed festival tents and sweaty after hours club floors alike. Much like his mentor, Dillon Francis, who has recently adopted a label-free release strategy, Drezo is coming in full force on his own this summer with Jaded, and if “Dead” is any indication, it’s going to be high caliber tech house quality from one of the genre’s brightest prospects.
Superpoze might not be a superstar just yet, but this French talent is certainly one to keep a look out for. Having began his tenure in the music world as a classically trained artist and multi-instrumentalist, he’s spent the past half decade carefully cultivating his electronic career with a series of releases and live appearances that leave those happening upon him highly impressed and wanting to hear more.
In particular, a standout feature of Superpoze’s performances is that he showcases the full breadth of his talent by using actual instruments and a hybrid setting of sorts rather than simply DJing. The result feels almost like a Kiasmos, Jon Hopkins or Stephan Bodzin show – immersive as ever, profoundly melodic, and, in general, he fosters nouveau-classical atmosphere that can please music enthusiasts across multiple generations.
Fans can now revel in a special Radar mix the burgeoning producer has provided – a true journey through sentimental and sweeping soundscapes that are stitched tidily together for a truly awe-inspiring hour. Additionally, he also took some time out of his schedule to discuss his musical upbringing and creative process. Peruse below while listening along to the melodies he puts forth.
1. Superpoze – Azur 2. John Talabot – Voices 3. Adesse Versions – Pressured 4. Superpoze – Gleam 5. The xx – A Violent Noise (Four Tet Remix) 6. Parple – Sacred 7. Cosmin TRG – Vertigo (Tale of Us & Fango Remix) 8. Dark Sky – Em Cy 9. Daniel Schmidt – And the Darkest Hour is Just Before Dawn
Do you think your classical training/instrumentation has made you a more well rounded musician?
Classical training allows me to understand what I feel when I’m making music. It makes it easier. When I feel ‘this’ should happen I know which note or which chord [it takes to make] ‘this.’ If you want to use a word you’ve heard, it is always good to know how to write it.
Do you generate your own samples and sounds? What’s your process there?
I mostly record my own sounds, percussion, synthesizers, etc. and sometimes I use those as samples. I record a sound, do something I like with it, and then I treat this recording as an external sample. I pitch it, make slices, and make something new with it.
I do this to create a conversation between me and myself. I’m playing chess alone.
Why do you choose to perform so many elements of your music live?
I need to create accidents during a live set. When strange things happens live—this is the most exciting moment of a concert. If everything is written, you can enjoy it, but I don’t want to miss this moment when the audience and the artist are both surprised by the sound.
When did you start making music and how? In general, but also specifically electronic music.
I was a music student from 6 to 14 years old. I studied classical percussion, played in a lot of teenage bands in my hometown and I started to record music on my computer when I was 18. I first started with sample-based tracks and when I got my first synthesizer, I started to record my first album Opening, which came out when I was 22.
What is your process for making such nuanced and layered tracks? Where does it start and where does it end?
I definitely takes a lot of time to make music—and I follow time’s arrow. I don’t start a song with a hook and then look for an introduction, an end, etc.. I always start at the first second and then develop it until I feel the sound should stop.
Who are some people whose work you really appreciate or are inspired by?
I love the music of Moondog, Talk Talk, Jon Hopkins, and Nosaj Thing among a lot of other artists.
Previewed most notably to a crowd of thousands in his powerhouse Ultra Music Festival set, Malaa has finally released one of his most anticipated recent IDs, now named “Belleville.” Using a balaclava to protect his concealed ID, the known side project of ‘Pardon My French‘ purveyors DJ Snake, Tchami and Mercer has debuted his collection of releases and most recent Illegal Mixtape from the Confession label.
Electrifying the dance floor with this presumably Detroit-inspired track, Malaa has characterized a unique house/G-house sound that works hand-in-hand with the underground club scene. Incorporating a distinct bass line that flourishes into the basis of this full on two-step anthem, the official release of “Belleville” is bound to make its appearance in a selection of other sets throughout the year.
Romanian house outfit Boehm unleashed “Criminal,” where lighthearted production juxtaposes attention-grabbing lyrics about unrequited love from vocalist Karra. Out now on Armada Music, “Criminal” is the perfect summertime tune to belt out and forget about an ex-lover. With playful synths and an easy-listening vibe, the new tune highlights Karra’s emotive voice.
Pegboard Nerds‘ “Melodymania” has gone through a few variations in its short 6-month lifespan, the latest one having just been released.
The original track was released in early December 2016 and has since passed 1 million plays on SoundCloud. With its catchy melody and ferocious builds, the track quickly became a favorite among fans. Last month, the Nerds re-released the track with stirring vocals from Anna Yvette.
Yesterday, June 16, Pegboard Nerds released a VIP mix of “Melodymania,” which reverts back to the instrumental format of the original track, but contains some mind-boggling, unexpected house drops.
The Pegboard Nerds just finished up their Revenge of the Nerds tour, in which they trekked all over North America from March to late May. The duo have shared this VIP mix as a thank you to their fans, stating the following alongside its release:
“This was hands down our wildest tour yet, so many amazing experiences in such a short period of time! We’re still processing all of it honestly.. Can’t wait to see you all on the road again soon! Thank you so much <3”
One would be hard-pressed to find a more exciting act in the current house and techno sphere than Adana Twins. The Hamburg-based pair of producers Friso and Take It Easy have been working together for over a decade, and are certainly no strangers to the scene. However, in the past year, Adana Twin’s have inarguably reached new heights.
The duo’s Diynamic-backed single, “Uncompromising,” has been nothing short of ubiquitous since its March release. The haunting production, which topped the Beatport charts for some time, remains a fixture of sets from the industry’s most powerful figures around the globe.
One of the facets that made “Uncompromising” so compelling was its masterful blend of stirring synth-work and continually delayed gratification. Adana Twins have a rare knack for thoroughly engaging listeners by arranging their songs in prolonged states of near-crescendo. Due to their masterful execution of this framework, the duo manages to keep listeners on the edge of their seats throughout the course of their pieces, which makes the payoff from their songs’ eventual climaxes exponentially more satisfying.
In their newest output, a remix to Fritz Kalkbrenner’s “Changing Face,” Adana Twins explore this strength to great extents. Almost reaching ten minutes in length, their interpretation of the single exemplifies the notion that the techno and house experience should be, at its highest level, about songs’ journeys, not their destinations.
Should listeners conceptualize the “drops” of their remix as its “destinations,” they would find themselves waiting over four minutes for two incredibly cathartic and well-composed bass drones. However, what makes Adana Twins’ revision so enthralling is their suspension of gratification; the gnawing feeling of intrigue which pervades throughout the backdrop they provide for Kalkbrenner’s vocals. Indeed, the song’s trajectory endows it with an epochal sensibility – one which matches the magnitude of the “changing face of the earth.”
With their newest release, Adana Twins are primed to remain ubiquitous in the techno and house realms for the foreseeable future.
Fritz Kalkbrenner’s “Changing Faces” remixes also include contributions from Maya Jane Coles and Deetron. The collection will be released Friday, June 16, via Suol and BMG. They are available for preorder here.
Nero have been largely quiet since their sophomore album, Between II Worlds. The 2015 LP saw the duo of Joseph Ray and Daniel Stephens evolve into a trio with the induction of vocalist Alana Watson as a full-fledged member of their group. Though the band has maintained a steady touring schedule in the time since their acclaimed album, they’ haven’t put forth any new studio material since (although they did release a Prince tribute and seem to cryptically hint at a new EP in 2016).
As Nero’s musical hiatus nears the two year mark, Joseph Ray has come forward with his debut solo production, “Inside.” Premiered today, June 12, via Billboard, the single possesses all the harrowing grandeur of Nero’s canon with the danceable qualities of house’s most revered talents. Vocalist and producer Meli, who joins Ray on the track as a result of Smirnoff Sound Collective’s endeavor to link up promising rising talents with experienced mentors, adds an element of mystification which pervades the track’s entirety.
Reportedly, Ray has intentions to release several more tracks as a soloist in 2017.
Hiding in the mixtape was a brand new track from Heldens called “Ibiza 77 (Can You Feel It),” which is finally out in its entirety. The track fits in perfectly with this new music Heldens has been drawing inspiration from with its funky, timeless vibe. The producer explained his reasoning for the number 77 in the mixtape’s description:
“Why the number ’77’ in the name? Well in my eyes the year 77 was the period nowadays ‘electronic’ dance music was born and from there it immediately conquered dance floors all over the world. Think of Donna Summer ‘I Feel Love’, think of CHIC, ABBA, Kraftwerk… All this music is timeless and new generations (like me, born in ’95 :p) will always keep rediscover this music, people will always want to dance…”
Stream the full track on Spotify below, and check out the first mixtape on Soundcloud.
Los Angeles-based producer Gunslinger has been making a name for himself with his synthesis of live instruments and atmospheric electronic beats. His latest, “Journeyman,” opens up with prominent use of guitar — which engenders immediate comparison to Zhu‘s work with the axe. However, where Zhu has opted for a more ominous tone of late, Gunslinger leans into an atmospheric vibe that is both fairly loose while crackling with energy.
“Journeyman’s” drop features a number of unfurling, plucked basses that propel the production forward before building to surprise, guitar-laden progressive house inspired finale. With the successful combination of such disparate style, Gunslinger is establishing himself as one to watch.
Lane 8 is known for his “no phones allowed” rave concept called “This Never Happened” and his entrancing deep house sound. As a precursor to “This Never Happened: Summer Gatherings,” the Anjunadeep regular released a two part mix to highlight the different sets he will be playing at each stop of the Summer Gatherings Tour, which will be taking place in San Francisco, Colorado, and New York.
Part 1 of the mix explores two hours of the producer’s characteristic deep house style, while the second part spans three hours, delving into what he describes as “more driving progressive club tunes.”
Tickets and information about Lane 8’s “This Never Happened: Summer Gatherings” tour can be found via his website. Both parts of the five-hour “Summer 2017″mixtape are available to stream below: