Listen to Ember Island’s euphoric cover of Rihanna’s ‘Umbrella’

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Ember Island hase become synonymous with enchanting covers of high-powered pop and dance music tracks, including Jack Ü and Justin Bieber’s “Where Are Ü Now,” The Weeknd’s “Can’t Feel My Face,” and Porter Robinson’s emotional ballad “Sad Machine,” to name a few.

Now the Swedish electro-pop trio has transformed Rihanna’s iconic “Umbrella” with their melodic magic and captivating dreamlike synths. Celebrating ten years since the song was originally released, the group’s cover of “Umbrella” is a chilled out take on the original, incorporating guitar, piano, and sultry vocals.


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White Cliffs – On Call (Original Mix)

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Brooklyn-based producer White Cliffs has released “On Call,” a psychedelic bass original featuring a groovy downtempo beat, trippy guitar riffs and his own dreamy vocals. “On Call” is the first track off of the artist’s forthcoming EP which will be released in late September.

White Cliffs’ sound is categorized by soothing yet intriguing progressions, uplifting harmonies, and relaxing percussion, creating a euphoric vibe in every piece. The producer has remixed many pieces including Bebe Rexha‘s “I Got You” and liv’s “Wings of Love.” With his latest, White Cliffs flaunts his potential as an up and coming artist in the scene.

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EP ReviewEMBRZ experiments with genres in compelling new ‘Progress’ EP

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EMBRZ experiments with genres in compelling new ‘Progress’ EP

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Dublin-born producer EMBRZ has released his highly anticipated Progress EP via Ultra Music. The record outlines a dreamy composition while effortlessly blending downtempo melodies with progressive dance music. The release is the perfect soundtrack for any chill setting while also exhibiting EMBRZ’s versatility as an artist.

The self-taught producer tells us the following about Progress, and what drove him to release an EP:

“This EP was in some ways an experiment. I wanted to both challenge and push myself to work with different tempos and music styles. What if EMBRZ tried to write a pop song or something a bit heavy? I still wanted each track to feel like it belonged in the world of EMBRZ, but just my own spin on a certain style.”

EMBRZ’s ability to produce multiple types of music that blend into one great soundtrack is unique, making it even more impressive that he is self taught.

Higher” is a mythical track with smooth vocals juxtaposing magnetically with the downtempo bassline that builds into a surprisingly intense drop. Prior to the EP’s release, “Higher” reached number one on Hype Machine’s most popular tracks. Indeed, the electronica-fueled single provides a strong start to the EP.

“Heartlines” has vocals by Meadowlark, and is less electronically driven than “Higher.” EMBRZ sets piano as the backbone of the track, bolstered by folk vocals and a steady build leading to the chorus. “Heartlines” more reminiscent of a song that would play on the radio, rather than one that would play at the club.

“Black Hole” opens with vocals that lead straight into an upbeat drum and piano intro. The lengthy, lyrically-focused beginning of the song leads into a progressive house drop where synths are the main attraction.

“Kido” relies more on a drumline and bass sound. The downtempo track would be perfect for a coffee shop or a spa, invoking dreamy feelings of relaxation.

The last track on Progress, “Fire,” features vocals by former Skrillex collaborator Pennybirdrabbit. Catchy vocals open up the track and draw the listener into a house track still retaining the mystical elements that are characteristic of the rest of the album.

Weekend Rewind: Relive Sinjin Hawke and Zora Jones’ rowdy Boiler Room set

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It has been a busy year for Fractal Fantasy co-founders Sinjin Hawke and Zora Jones. With Sinjin Hawke’s album, First Opus, being released in May and a steady stream of singles, remixes, and collaborations coming from both artists, it is easy for some great content to slip through the cracks. A few months ago, the Spanish duo put on an unmissable bass-driven Boiler Room set.

The event, recorded live in Bengaluru, India, is full of surprises that only these DJs could have in their arsenal. With most tracks by either one or both artists, Sinjin Hawke and Zora Jones showed off the intense work that they put into their diverse live shows. Packed with unreleased bootlegs, edits, and more, the set spans many genres including footwork, jersey club, grime, trap, and hip hop. This eclectic mix of heavy beats and deep rhythms is a perfect example of what these two rising producers have to offer.

Tracklist:

Zora Jones & Sinjin Hawke – Glass Chains
Sinjin Hawke & Zora Jones – Source Of Conflict
Busy Signal – Brave & Bold (Sinjin Hawke Edit)
E40 – Choices (YUP) (Zora Jones Bootleg)
Sinjin Hawke – Nailgun
Famous Eno, Sinjin Hawke & Zora Jones ft. Trigganom & Serocee – Gunshotta
1180 – Lick It
Brandy – Sittin Up In My Room (Xzavier Stone & Sinjin Hawke Bootleg)
Fox – Big Man Ting (prod. by Famous Eno)
Sinjin Hawke – Don’t Lose Yourself To This
Sinjin Hawke & Dj Sliink – Raw
Zora Jones – Too Many Tears VIP
MikeQ & Sinjin Hawke – Thunderscan
Bambounou – Any Other Service x Blaqstarr (FF Edit)
Sinjin Hawke – ???
Dj Jayhood – Lights Down Low (Zora Jones Remix)
Dj Na – MikeQ vs. Fingers Up (Boomclap Edit)
Jammer – Feedback (FF Edit)
Gangsta Boo & Sinjin Hawke – Yea Hoe (Vjuan Allure Remix)
DVA, Killa P, Sinjin Hawke – Worst [Vocal Dub]
Xzavier Stone – ???
Kid D – Set Fire
Scratcha DVA & Wiley – Apocalypto (FF Edit)
Low Deep – So Right Now
Soulja Boy – Pow (Boomclap Edit)
Zora Jones – First Light
Ceeda – Zoom (FF Edit)
Ciara – Go Girl (Zora Jones Edit) (Club Mix)
Sinjin Hawke & Zora Jones – Lurk 101
Xzavier Stone – ???
Zora Jones – ???
Sinjin Hawke – Flood Gates VIP
Dj Roc – Uh Huh (Boomclap Edit)
v1984 & Zora Jones – The Zone
Dj 2Tall x Dj YB – Sex With Me (Boomclap Edit)
Assasin – Goodie Bye Bye (FF Edit)
Dj Roc – Vybrant Vibez
Sinjin Hawke – 321 [Vox Beatking]
Tiara Goonie – All Out Of Time (Zora Jones Edit)

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Astre releases dreamy EP on Moving Castle’s imprint titled ‘For So Long’

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20-year-old French producer Astre has released an indie downtempo influenced EP titled For So Long via Moving Castle. The EP features vocal contributions from Amela on the sweeping “Romance,” as well as Kevin Blu’s tranquil voice on “Shades.” Each song is captivating in its own right, featuring different styles, while at the same time staying true to the EP’s aesthetic as a whole.

“The For So Long EP been through many forms, but my goal was always to do something poetic and youthful with it. The point was to create a complete story – music, artworks, films… – sharing a juvenile mind about love, life, and what happens to that mind when it enters the wild world. I wanted to share another point of view than my past EP Dreams of Gold, which was more thought and sad. I wanted to showcase the positive as well, and where it leads. Explain the origin of the sadness isn’t sadness itself. Since I made these songs last year, it’s been very hard to grow and keep them secret, as they do not necessarily reflects who I am today. Even if I keep questioning myself, I am so excited today to release this EP as I feel way more free to explore further then.”

With powerful intentions relayed behind For So Long, the EP stands out by conveying moving sentiments for listeners. Astre has shown that with his latest releases, the experimental EP speaks for itself in its artistry.

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Former Flosstradamus member YehMe2 releases 28-track mixtape [Free Download]

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Former Flosstradamus member YehMe2 has been busy in the studio since the duo announced their split late last year. Taking a step away from the “HDY NATION” festival trap sound, YehMeh2 is moving towards a mellower direction that is wildly fun and experimental.

His newest project, the second release in the Steal This Mixtape (STMT) series, reaches deep in the rock/pop musical vault, putting new experimental trap spins on ’50s oldies “Twist” and “Blue Moon” as well as the Selena classic “Como la Flor” and a cover of Drake’s single “Both.” Further including a number of new originals, YehMe2’s entire mixtape is as cleanly mastered as it is masterfully mixed.

The full STMT2 mixtape is also available for download here.

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Four Tet releases avant-garde new single, announces album coming in 2017

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London based DJ and producer, Four Tet, has emerged from the woodwork in grand form with the release of his newest track, “Two Thousand And Seventeen.” Featuring sweeping harmonic progressions and tranquil sonic sensibilities, the striking downtempo piece marks Kieran Hebden’s first officially released single as a solo artist since 2013. “Two Thousand And Seventeen” comes alongside the artist’s scintillating announcement of a brand new album coming later this year.

Four Tet’s sound can be described as a fusion of avant-garde production incorporated with traditional elements of mellifluous instrumentation. Though it sometimes seems that Hebden’s releases are few and far between, the established artist has continually improved upon his experimental, innovative style with each composition. Needless to say, “Two Thousand And Seventeen” foreshadows an incredibly momentous album to come.

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EPROM shares heavy-handed new five-track EP, ‘Pineapple’

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2017 has been a busy year for EPROM. After releasing Night the Dreadless Angel EP under the moniker Shades, a duo comprising of himself and UK-based drum & bass producer Alix Perez, EPROM has returned to his solo output with his long-awaited Pineapple EP.

Pineapple features four original tracks and one remix. Opening the collection with the EP’s fitting title track, EPROM breaks into his famously adventurous, experimental production style with distorted bass stabs and wobbling, industrial synths. The release’s second select, “B.F.G.” finds EPROM dabbling with a wiry trap bounce ahead of “Zweihander,” which circles back to an all-out assault of crisp 303 rhythms over a landscape of deep, growling sub-bass.

EPROM ties together the original tracks with a haunting downtempo piece titled “Koummya.” To close out the EP, the producer reached out to past collaborator G-Jones for a heavy remix of “Pineapple.” Along with collaborations that include Barclay Crenshaw, Alix Perez, G-Jones, Ivy Lab, and more EPROM continues to secure his spot as one of underground bass music’s foremost talents on his latest release, Pineapple.

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Premiere: Frameworks – Kings (Original Mix)

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Manchester-based performer and producer Frameworks is has shared the second piece from his forthcoming album. “Kings” is the titular single from the instrumental artist’s atmospheric downtempo LP, which is set for release later this summer via  Emancipator‘s imprint Loci Records.

Signaling itself an ambient labor of love, “Kings” harpoons back to the lush, symphonic compositions that make up Matthew James Brewer’s sonic catalog. The entire track is littered with subtle complexities — delicate strings, pulsating bass lines, and thrilling vocals — which showcase Frameworks’ adeptness for pulling together indie electronica and jazzy hip-hop into one stunning dialogue that is simultaneously sorrowful and hopeful.

“Kings” follows Frameworks’ remix of Tor’s “Vaults,” a fellow Loci label mate who will be touring together this summer along with other Loci artists. Alongside this tour, Frameworks is also slated to hit two large International festivals this August, Shambhala and Oregon Eclipse.

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On ‘Iteration,’ Com Truise explores the tactility of sound [Album Review]

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Much of the music that we listen to is so vocal-driven, with the spotlight shinning resolutely on singers and their performances, that when we do encounter instrumental music we can feel a bit adrift. We train our ears to follow vocal lines so naturally that, in their absence, it takes us a minute to figure out what’s important in the song, and what to focus on. Instrumental artists can’t rely on the accessibility of catchy lyrics or the charisma of a great singer to keep listeners interested; they have to find ways of keeping our attention using only the abstract and hard to verbalize tools of rhythm, harmony, and sound. This can lead to its own traps and overindulgences, a common one in electronic music being a sort of hyper complexity, whereby producers, for fear of being boring, stuff their mixes so full of layers, sounds,  fills, edits, glitches, and automations, that the end result is distracting, rather than dazzling, exhausting rather than engaging.

To its credit, this is a trap that Com Truise’s Iteration avoids, albeit narrowly. There’s an awful lot going on in this record, often so much so that the listener is unsure where the focus is supposed to be. But this is an abundance that seems a great deal more intentional, and a great deal more sincere than the typical throw-everything-at-the-wall-and-see-what-sticks approach of most pop and commercial EDM. Rather, Iteration takes the fundamental sounds and tropes of its synth wave genre DNA and pushes them to their logical extremes. It takes thick, warm bass and makes it as thick and warm as it can possibly be. It takes retro sounding synth patches and makes them drip with color and texture. It extends its technicolor soundscapes into both the rigidly synthetic and deeply fragile, to the point that, on several occasions, it literally decays in our ears. And it transforms genre-drums already known for being big and pounding into a percussion section that’s so concussive, so forward and immediate in the mix, that it sound as much like gun shots as drum samples.

The album’s greatest achievement is in finding some cohesion among these extremes. There are moments, most notably the overcrowded ‘Memory,’ when Iteration gets buried in its own commotion. But by and large, the complexity of the album allows the listener to facilitate their own engagement with it, to govern their own experience. Rather than stumbling through the complexities, looking for focus, one can let their attention wander through the soundscapes Com Truise creates, overlooking the sounds that aren’t interesting and lingering over, really feeling the contours of those that are. This makes Iteration are very subjective album, with reactions dependent upon how one listens to it, and what one listens for throughout its course.

Iteration is also a very physical album. Though ostensibly tied together with a narrative concept, there are only sporadic attempts made to communicate that concept through buzzing, robotic bits of dialogue haphazardly slapped into the bookends of several tracks, and the album neither needs nor benefits from their presence. There are a few moments – such as in the arcing melodies of “Usurper” or the surprisingly bracing energy of “Ternary” – where the album achieves some real evocative emotion. However, most of the album’s interest lies in its celebration of the tactility of sound – its shape and texture. The sounds that make up the album feel very tangible, and the soundscapes they assume feel navigable and firmly grounded.

Iteration is many things. It is bright, loud, full, and complex. Yet, it is also far from perfect. The LP is often safe, frequently repetitive and occasionally redundant. Nevertheless, it is one of those albums that we kept thinking about after we heard it, if for no other reason than to wonder what it would feel like to hold one of those bass notes in our hands.

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