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The Weekly Froth!

  • Published in Columns

The Weekly Froth! A weekly take on six tracks, most of which have recently popped up somewhere in the blogosphere. Bit of a mixed bag with a slight leaning towards house, disco, and remixes, but generally just anything that for some reason tickled the writer’s fancy.

Track of the week: ‘Calling Card’ by The Galleria

Morgan Geist knows how to mix danceability with some emotive vocals, and here he does so as The Galleria, which takes it’s cue more from '80s pop than the house or disco music that he has emulated as part of his other monikers. So here you’ve got some iconic synthesizer sounds, using the ticks, bleeps, and percussion hits well alongside the throwback sounds that one remembers from radios or discotheques past. Jessy Lanza is on vocal duties, putting in some emotion with her rhythmic delivery. At about four minutes in we get this bell solo (!), which then is followed by a more bass-synth line as he goes for an instrumental passage for the dancefloor, with Lanza doing some “oh-ho, yeah”s to get some sexy in there as well to end the track. I love a lot of Geist’s stuff (those Storm Queen singles are especially superb), and he knows how to mix dance with the vocal outings he gets from his leading men and women. This is more on the catchy and pop side, a nice supplement to his oeuvre I reckon.

‘Escape’ by Zimmer feat. Emilie Adams

Emilie Adams wastes no time entering the scene here, immediately putting her dreamy, far-off stamp on this undoubtedly catchy track by Zimmer (because, you know, that’s just what he does). So no wonder that you get this elegant beat and synth combo after just a few moments, which he halts at about the forty second mark to go just piano to help out his singer here for a moment. Just for that extra emotional touch. Soon the percussion elements come back in, with the guy obviously working his way back to, in this case, a new beat. And the occassional touch of horns, which is always a good addition (they’re horns, what do you want from me?). Again, he takes his foot off the pedal for a moment, but that beat is quick to come back, though this time it seems he combines the two different ones he’s already used to give us the full monty that he has been leading up to the whole track. It’s a track of his new, upcoming EP, one that will be an enjoyable listen no doubt.


‘The Formula’ by Eli Escobar

Eli Escobar seems to have recently put his whole album Up All Night on his soundcloud, so if you missed listening to it on release, here’s a way to preview it no strings attached. This track, ‘The Formula’, starts with some of those club sounds. Far away music, people talking, and other assorted sounds associated with a night out. The music, though, creeps to the front of the mix with a nice bit of piano house arriving first, with a soft percussion line still being a bit shy and taking a back seat at the start. The vocals then really come in again, repeating the line I’ve got something for you, which in the club can only mean one thing, really, can’t it? In the mean time the piano has been integrated into the more percussion based rhythm sounds, with a jazzy saxophone putting this in a smoking bar in NY before it takes you to town a short while later when the rhythm takes you out and wants to do some serious dancing with you. Doesn’t mean the saxophone can’t be there, cause by this point everyone wants to join the party in this catchy little number. Loads of atmosphere, super smooth, and loads of fun: if you’re working at home and you’re looking for something to stream to get your energy up a bit, his soundcloud is where it’s at.


‘Lucia’ by Ishinohana (John Talabot Sunset edit)

John Talabot is the master of atmosphere combined with deep beats, and here, from the get go, he shows you why. He starts with a nice, deep, bit African sounding percussion. Some extra hand percussion comes in, soon being combined with these lovely secondary sounds to really give you the feeling you’re watching the sun set over the plains and all that jazz. He adds a little bass sound in there too, and a lighter rhythmic percussion, though it is that guitar that really puts this one in the place where it needs to be. He is super in terms of building his tracks up, and here, too, the subtle transitions, the subtle changes in volume, the subtraction or addition of certain sounds; it’s all done with an expert ear. At 2:50, for instance, there’s little left in terms of rhythm sounds, but just over the three minute mark they come back in without overpowering the main instrument at all. Keeps you out there in sunglasses riding around the out-of-town roads, just because it feels like that’s what you gotta do listening to this one.


‘Fear the Night’ by Luke Million feat. Jesse Davidson

I’m more prone to fear mornings than nights, to be honest, but Luke Million certainly gets those italo synths blasting as if they’re doing a sci-fi soundtrack with the hero vs. baddies sequence coming up. Jesse Davidson puts in a rhythmic vocal turn, saying that You’ve got the right, to fear the night, a line followed by a nice, bordering-on-cheesy piano line from Million, with the synths and beat combo still hammering this one onto the dancefloor. At about the second minute mark Million comes with a new synth line, which is pretty catchy and awesome, as Davidson mentions that You’ve said that you’d never be unfaithful to me (Ha! We all know that was a lie!), so there’s a bit of an emotional thingy going on, which we dance away on the synths and cheesy-piano-chorus, turning it up a bit with a sort of male back-up choir near the end. As always, dancing the blues away on a catchy-little-tune like this one beats out dancing the blues away on a tearjerkingly-serious-affair, so don’t mind if I do it right here, right now.


‘You Got the Love’ by Candi Staton (Dr. Packer rework)

The bass gets this one rolling out of the gates, with some percussion and synths helping out after the initial few seconds. These sounds become more prominent as this one closes in on the coming of the vocals, which we all know at one point or another will arrive with a vengeance. First we get a few rounds of building up the instrumental structure of the track, with Dr. Packer adding sound for sound before dialling it all down a bit for some muted bass and vocals. Which he is wise enough to turn up quickly again, as he knows that, now we’ve heard it, we want it. It’s one of those tunes that everyone who has ever been on a dancefloor knows, with that big, all-out vocal turn by Candi Staton, exclaiming that Your love is real, and she does feel sometimes like putting her hands up in the air in praise of that. In the mean time the bass keeps rolling to provide that base for dancing, and at that point you just have to make sure you’re not in her way, because she is barreling through this ode to true love. Some subdued horns and a dash of piano can be heard as well, and this is just one of those feel good edits you can throw out there for just about every crowd. As, Lord knows, we all need a bit of that Staton real love every once in a while.



The Weekly Froth - August #4

  • Published in Columns


The Weekly Froth! A weekly take on six tracks, most of which have recently popped up somewhere in the blogosphere. Bit of a mixed bag with a slight leaning towards house, disco, and remixes, but generally just anything that for some reason tickled the writer’s fancy.

Track of the week: ‘Across 110th Street’ by Bobby Womack (Alkalino Rework)

You know that, at one point, this track is going to give you that characteristic sound of those Bobby Womack vocals. Before any of that though, Alkalino sure builds this one up smoothly and sweetly, and even the first introduction of Womack’s vocals are sweet with a string of subdued “whoooo-oooooeeehh”s. Then you get those grated vocals so typical to Womack, saying that he isn’t saying (...) that what he did was all right. So it is confession time here, with this track having been used for the 1972 film of the same name. In the mean time, Alkalino is giving you this nice disco ride underneath all the lyrics, love the gentle guitar in there, as well as that bass that is so smoothly integrated into all the rest. Naturally, there’s a little beat going on to provide the backbones to this whole operation, but that, too, isn’t intrusive at all. It’s all smooth as all get out, even when the horns come in at about four minutes in. The chorus gets a bit more pace with both how Womack sings as well as because of the extra strings, and around the five minute mark Alkalino starts working the dramatics with plenty of sounds to give you some extra oomph, just to slide you back into that soft disco of before a little bit later. Lovely smooth ride with a blast from the past with the title song to that 1972 crime film. Soundcloud seems to not be working for this one so see the Media section below for the bandcamp version.


‘Night Flight’ by Midnight Magic

I really like Midnight Magic, the New York disco collective which released an album a few years ago that included some ace singles like ‘Beam Me Up’ and ‘Drop Me a Line’, which are just disco behemoths as far as I’m concerned. Here they tone it down, take you back into the night a bit, not as all out party as the two songs I just mentioned. More the soundtrack to your stroll through the NY city streets after midnight. Love the bass they’ve got going there, which combine nicely with the brass that comes in every now and again. On vocals you’ve got Tiffany Roth, whose got a real power voice that she manages to turn into something elusive and dreamy here as she prods you to Fly, fly, fly, fly to the future. In the last minute you’ve got some double vocals going on, with Roth doing some singing over a vocal line of doob-doob-doo-oeh, which was already present in the song from the very start. They’ll be coming out with a new 5 track EP, and this single will get a bunch of remixes from the talented lads of both PillowTalk as well as No Regular Play, so it’s just the gift that keeps on giving, really.


‘Inga e som vi e, hogt over marken’ by Little Jinder & Melo (HNNY remix)

Now, I don’t know any Scandinavian language, and chances are that unless you are from one of those countries, neither do you. That’s okay, as HNNY’s remix of this track originally by Little Jinder & Melo gives you plenty of those dancefloor vibes that you won’t be thinking of what the heck they are singing. Some lovely house elements with this tinge of R&B for flavour, the percussion is very catchy, with the steady snare to provide the base here. The vocals, though I’ve got no idea what they are singing, have plenty of soul in them, so it’s a joy to listen to them anyway. And for a long stretch before the third minute mark you get plenty of opportunity to do so with the vocals being basically the only thing out there. After that you get a nice bass, and really all the dancing HNNY provides is just spot on. That guy, I just love his work (If you have never heard his edit of TLC’s ‘No Scrubs’ check that one out!), so smooth, and he always manages to keep plenty of flavour in there. This one, it’s a free download, so if you’re feeling like adding to your Scandinavian collection, this one is a worthwhile addition I would think.


‘What They Say’ Darkside

The Darkside project will go on indefinite hiatus, with the lads doing just a few more shows and then its curtains for at least a while. That’s too bad, as I loved the combination of Nicolas Jaar’s electronical wizardry and the piercing guitar of Dave Harrington. It had always seemed like such an underused combination, and these guys went into it with full force. Here, at first, the rhythm is dictated by both the electronical sounds as well as Harrington’s plucky guitar, which he, about 1:55 in, makes come out a bit more prominent, as a caged tiger waiting to burst out. You feel the slow build-up from the atmospherical start, waiting for it all to come out running. This happens at about 2:50, where they add a deeper bass sound as the base layer, a light, springy electro sound to give the perception of pace, and it rides those sounds for a while until about 4:20, when some auxiliary sounds come in to give it a little extra flavour. Near the end drawn out synth sounds and the guitar wind it all down with some extra atmosphere. I wouldn’t say this instrumental cut was their very finest track, but in terms of aesthetic you get a good idea of what the project has given us. The album is spectacular (if you get through those first five minutes of noise that is...), and live they boost the beats for the dancing and that live momentum you want to build. Glad to have seen them earlier this year when they were touring.


‘Sunsplash’ by Luke Million (Jacques Renault dub remix)

I’m a big fan of Jacques Renault, and here he comes with a dub mix for Luke Million’s track ‘Sunsplash’. Certainly the dubby beat is there, though it is the bass that will have people swaying on the dancefloor. After about fifty seconds the light piano takes over, a little later on getting combined with the bass again for the ultimate effect. At about 1:40 you get some extra synth lines in there which work well. It is a nice mixture of the beat and the bass for the lower registers, and then all the synths, pianos, whatever giving you that summer party vibe. Especially those transitions like around about 2:50 are fun, where he slides into that quicker paced piano, that’s lovely. At 3:20 he strips the higher sounds for a string of percussion which, soon enough, get that bass as a companion. He mixes that with all kinds of synth sounds, waiting for over a minute to get those piano lines back in there. It’s a lovely remix, a nice mixture of the bass to dance to and the lighter sounds to add this feeling of fun to it. Add to that some moments with a bit of extra percussion and even a piano solo, and it’s an agreeable affair to have a little dance on no doubt.


‘Bother’ by Les Sins

Les Sins is Toro Y Moi, and now that talented young man is gearing up to release a new album under that moniker, which you could say gives room to his more house urges. The album will be called ‘Michael’ (as in, Jackson?) and it will be out on the 4th of November, with this being the lead single. He certainly isn’t one to waste time, as this song starts right in the club. You’ve got the “crowd sounds” in the back as one guy is saying that they shouldn’t bother him, he’s working. Probably he’s working it on the dancefloor and not in the office, as with that punchy beat Toro Y Moi makes no bones about how this album will differ from his general output. He also adds plenty of percussion in there, and a little melancholic piano to give it some feeling as well. Really enjoy the transition at about 2:15, where he moves back to the main beat, that’s a nice momentum builder. At about 2:30 he turns down the house, and goes to church for a minute with some sounds that, in my mind, are accompanying who someone is descending from the heavens or something like that. Just before the end he does go back, not to the beat, but to the guy saying that he is working, to make it all go full circle. I really like this guy, seen him live, he’s awesome, so really intrigued by this project. And I do like this track, though out of the album context it does sometimes feel a bit as if he tries to cram all his house ideas into a 3:45 song. By doing that he still gives you plenty to enjoy here though, so all’s good.



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