No Mana has released his second album of the year, Melted Candy. Following the release of Assorted Repetitions released earlier in 2018, this release sees the LA artist explore new territory in sound to round out the year.
While the release opens with “In My Mind,” which starts out with a new, intricate and melancholic take on the acidic synths from the complextro of yesteryear, the song – and the rest of the EP – develops into something exploratory, canvassing a range of dance music sounds. There’s elements of gritty, bass-heavy house as well as familiar progressive basics sprinkled throughout the project. This creates beautifully layered music that at first glance might seem one way, but with each twist and turn tells a beautiful story all its own. No Mana’s talent and focus are clear – and tactfully executed – across the duration of Melted Candy.
This 6-track release is yet another we’ve seen this year that cements 2018 as the year of the short long form release, with Melted Candy dubbed as an LP.
Matt Medved is adding another high profile remix to his catalog with his new take on Marshmello and Bastille‘s smash hit, “Happier.” Closely following a grooving house remix of Khalid‘s “Love Lies,” Matt Medved has followed up with a buoyant, upbeat take on “Happier,” taking the tune from the radio waves to the dance floor with his re-visioning.
Accenting the track’s foundation with his own house-inspired theme, Medved leaves Bastille’s vocal work largely intact, working in his own infectious percussion arrangements around the track’s ubiquitous topline. Lush club-ready soundscapes supplant Marshmello’s cheerful piano chords as Medved breathes new life into his masked companion’s latest hit. Matt Medved’s remix also follows another inventive take on the track by JAUZ — who opted to offer a more downtempo perspective on one of the year’s biggest tracks. Stream Matt Medved’s remix of “Happier” below.
Anonymity has become a powerful tool for artists in recent years, with artists like Sia and Marshmello hiding their faces and letting their work and collaborative outputs define their respective brands. However, few artists have used anonymity to define a completely new character with a narrative and a new world for listeners to explore. That is until SQUIRM veered off course and crash landed with a new five-track Traveller EP to introduce the enigmatic new project.
Word is that the mysterious new SQUIRM had established themselves under another moniker in the past, though the exploratory new guise comes with a fresh, experimental sonic aesthetic different from previous projects.
Traveller plays like a story — there’s a beginning, middle, and an end — teetering between floor-ready house, pulsing tech tropes, and 8-bit inspired electronica. Intriguing vocal accents carry the EP, which gradually sways from ambient moments to bubbly, shuffling breakdowns from front to back. The EP tells the first chapter in SQUIRM’s story, detailing the alien producer’s arrival and setting up the ensuing intergalactic thrill ride. It’ll be interesting to see where the mysterious SQUIRM goes from here — follow along as the story unfolds.
Eric Sharp has dropped off a certified smooth progressive house cut, though, its a track fans might already be somewhat familiar with. Stepping up to his own previously released “Too Much,” originally recorded alongside Brooklyn-based electronic duo French Horn Rebellion, Sharp remixes his own track into a certified smooth disco-inspired house cut, driven by infectious floor-ready piano chords. Sharp remarks on his new remix,
“In remixing ‘Too Much’ for the dance floor I went with a more minimal approach than the original, stripping it back into the most essential and driving elements. This opened up space for the basslines to shine for maximum impact in a club environment. I wrote new percussion to make it hit harder and restructured the track with DJing in mind, placing the vocals in the breaks. The piano drop was something I was hearing in my head so that was just about finding the right chords to compliment the bassline.”
Sharp’s revisiting of his joint effort with French Horn Rebellion comes as part of a new remix EP, with incoming new takes on last year’s Eric Sharp and Friends EP. The new, solo rendition of “Too Much” blends funky disco and house tropes into a repeat-worthy second take, extending the track’s shelf life with an aced remix.
Every year feels like a busy year for Duke Dumont — his music is always ubiquitous. But looking at the facts, 2018 has been a quiet year for British artist. His only original single of the year yet, “Inhale,” had long legs in remixing and pop radio play, but now he’s back to make sure we haven’t forgotten where his roots lie: in club-ready dance music.
Entitled “Runway (For Club Play Only, Pt 5),” the track’s name might automatically raise some questions, including where are parts 1-4? Well die hard Dumont fans will be able to tell you that, as it’s been nearly two years since the last installment of the series was released. Launched in 2012, the series delivers singles that cater to one place only, as advertised. The fifth iteration in this series is inspiring for a fierce dance floor strut, underlined with in your face basslines and classic house samples from Robbie Tronco’s 1990’s tracks “Runway as a House” and “Walk 4 Me.”
The only thing consistent about Mija‘s sound is the constant drive to surprise. Although an enduring force in the dance music world, the artist has earned fans through eclectic releases across the electronic spectrum. Channeling 80s synth kitsch on releases like 2017’s “never b alone” one minute, and dishing Björk vibes on “Notice Me” the next is all in a day’s work for the Phoenix export. Despite releases on labels like OWSLA and Fool’s Gold, Mija’s independent status has allowed for complete creative control over her sound – which she’s appropriately described as “fk a genre.”
That limitless artistic vision is apparent from the jump on a smokey new two track release, Just Enough. Noir aesthetics pour on early in “I Hope To Cure Myself of You,” with a slinky bass line carrying the track through a maze of foley and spoken word samples. “Dead Flowers and Cigarettes” continues the story by trading in the previous track’s drum and bass breakdowns for dark house stylings, ending with a slowed up jazzy breakdown. The EP further solidifies Mija’s consistent sonic reinvention as a refreshing force in the electronic music world.
Cazztek is back with a new single titled “Down Like That,” in collaboration with Man 3 Faces. Cazztek’s new drop comes by way of Martin Garrix‘s continually dominant STMPD RCRDS, pushing a quirky G-house inspired blend on his latest product.
“Down Like That” is a certified club burner, clocking in at three minutes of straight grooving, upbeat footwork house. The kick-snare combo is intertwined with chopped rap vocals throughout, weaving stylistic hip-hop accents into the fold for a sure-shot setlist weapon. Cazztek drops off a well-rounded dance party piece that’s primed for heavy DJ set rotations and bound to continue raising the emerging force’s profile on “Down Like That”. Fans can catch Cazztek perform at Martin Garrix’s closing party at Ushuaïa Ibiza later this month.
Malaa is back with new music, just ahead of the anonymous producer’s North American Illegal tour kickoff this fall. The masked beatmaker’s latest deliver comes by way of “Cash Money” building the anticipation for his forthcoming Illegal Mixtape Vol. 2. The new original work is the second single from the impending compilation, following the project’s first infectious teaser, “Bling Bling.” Pair both singles side by side, and the new mixtape’s aesthetic really begins to take shape.
Whirling, ominous tech house layers are juxtaposed with tightly wound kicks stringing together the track’s propelling warehouse-primed energy. Designed as an underground club cut, “Cash Money” pushes Malaa’s signature dark, G-house-inspired sound. The track is out now via Tchami‘s CONFESSION imprint, and is a worthy addition to Malaa’s continually-growing catalogue of dangerous, club-ready sonics.
High fashion meets club-ready electronic dance music on Alisa Ueno and Edward Vigiletti’s head-turning new team up, “Is That It.” Ueno, head of Tokyo-based fashion imprint Fig & Viper has enlisted the help of Vigiletti and superstar Australian DJ duo NERVO for a new club-ready setlist weapon that’s bound for heavy rotations on the international DJ circuit. Bouncy, textured electro chords matched with a looping hook give the new collaboration equal parts undoubtable club flair and pop-leaning sensibility.
Fans might recognize Ueno’s credentials alongside EDM power duo Sofi Tukker on “Best Friend,” which makes her latest original work, “Is That It,” an obvious extension of the emerging producer’s sound. Meanwhile, Edward Vigiletti is fresh off of the release of his debut five track EP Xsc8pism. The new electro belter is in place to elevate both parties presence on the club circuit, and with some added star power from NERVO and an aesthetically pleasing new music video to boot, “Is That It” is a worthy late-summer addition to pregame playlists.
Following the release of their critically-acclaimed album Escape,Gorgon City is back with a remix of Weiss‘ house jam “Feel My Needs.” With a widely successful sophomore album and a what appears to be steady new material stocked as well, the English duo has hit their stride this fall season, gearing up for a well-equipped 2018 tour.
The remix is sure to be a fan-pleaser, as Gorgon City stick to their UK underground house roots on this one. The producer duo throw in some beloved deep bass and quick drum hits, topping off their remix effort with interchanging piano chords and echoed vocals cropped from the original mix. The tempo is sped up a bit, which sets this up perfectly with the theme of most Gorgon City live sets. Jump into Gorgon City’s “Feel My Needs” remix below.