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The Weekly Froth! - 20160930

  • 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: ‘Loner’ by Mykki Blanco feat. Jean Deaux

The track starts out with some stabbing synths, haunting vocals in the back, before Mykki Blanco comes in firing and guns blazing, announcing he is going Grizzly in the head. The chorus features the singing, courtesy of Jean Deaux, hitting home that I’m alone, so alone, I’m a loner. The synths indicate the start to the chorus, though it is the drum and other percussion that lead the rest of the way. After they have fired all their rounds, the synths come back in, giving it that lighter touch that goes really well with the track. In that sense, the drum, the synths, the singing, and the rapping all balance each other out into what, for me, is a great song. Coming from someone who rarely listens to someone rapping twice, that’s about as good as it gets really. So, hurry up now, before I take it back all blushing and embarrassed.


‘Und Da Stehen Fremde Menschen’ by Michael Meyer & Barnt

Lets get those house sounds in right from the get go, taking up the characteristics of the genre with that beat and that delicious bass synth to get jackin’ to. More and more atmospherics are poured in though, as if they first lured you onto the dancefloor, to then hook you with the feel of the track. Until, at about the two minute mark, as at that point you’re only hearing your heartbeat. That lasts for a reasonable while, before the detached vocals sing in German that Und da stehen fremde menschen, and then something else. Then the track first lets you go through some 80s computing sounds, an Atari tilting I reckon, before they bring back da house at the 3:30 mark with the bass and kick. I love how he then starts to slide the atmosphere in again, starting at about 4:10, and then adding those hypnotic vocals singing the title line of the track. Released on the always interesting !K7 label.


 ‘Far Away from A Distance’ by Simian Mobile Disco

Simian Mobile Disco are back, moving to the depths with the beat that they’re starting this one out with. The electro engineering sounds that come in at the 18 second mark, as well as the more woodwork percussion sounding rhythm bit, juxtapose it slightly, though not bringing it out of deepness entirely. At the minute mark they up the tempo, a fast drum sets the pace along with all kinds of quick synth work, giving you the nighttime angst right there. The lads keep that up for a while, though around 2:10 they steady out, moving it more towards the rhythm side of it all. At the three minute mark they’ve dialled it all the way down, even removing the rhythm parts. That’s where the build up starts, lasting a minute or so, before diving back into the deep beat and getting the dancefloor working again. The single has just been released, so you can snatch up a copy plus remix right about now … (check it out now).


‘Be There’ by SWIM

This one starts out with a wall of chilly synths, though about ten seconds in the bass enters the scene to provide the steady rhythm, with some percussion work to help out a bit. There are some haunty sounds giving you the atmospherics, and a little synth riff as lighter sound as well. Then the vocals come in, dreamy and alienated. When the vocals stop, a new little synth riff is added on top of a steady drum, which then is replaced by the bass again as the vocals start, singing that they want to Be there, and announcing that they want To care. Even so much so that they basically strip everything aside from the vocals for just a second, then moving back to the bass and synth to ride this one out. It has a nice nocturnal feel to it, both in terms of feel, pace, and it’s approach, giving you something for that midnight train to Georgia.


‘IM U’ by Beacon (Tomas Barfod remix)

Beacon has some help from Tomas Barfod to start this one out deep and dirty, and the grainy industrial sound that comes in at about the twenty second mark only moves it further into those depths. To juxtapose that, the vocals soon appear, providing a certain light in the darkness. There’s a nice bass to keep it steady, and I love those almost ghostly sounds (which is no reference to the label at all) that move through the song, which then get a brief relief from the vocals, doing a little Ah-ha-ha-ha-ha line. At the 2:20 mark Barfod strips it down, after which the track primarily goes for some harsher percussion sounds, giving it a different tone than at the start. Barfod then builds it up again until just before the four minute mark, when he lets the vocals soften it up as it starts moving to the end of the track. Barfod, again, shows his feel for both tone and percussion, which he proves year in year out with WhoMadeWho but definitely also solo as well, for example with the ace ‘Happy’ (if you’ve never heard that one before, be sure to give it a whirl).


’S_Balkavuk’ Ilya Santana instr. edit

This one starts out like a clockwork, but then, ten seconds in, there is the bass and the wobbly synth sound riffing it up. And it’s all on the up from there, adding little touches and sounds before the vocals come in all dressed in that disco choir fashion. After that, there’s a short prelude to the next dancing bit, with a bit of drums doing their little thing, but soon the bass comes in again, this time accompanied by a variety of horns that start getting it down. Around the two mark there’s another stop moment, but this time it’s a really brief one, and by the time 2:30 rolls by that bass is dictating the boogie again, soon being helped out by those vocals that re-enter the scene. Ilya Santana always knows how to get that groove in place, and though he gives it a twist with sounding a bit more disco and with those little pitstops scattered throughout the song, it definitely is on display here again as well. It’s an exotic free download for sure.



The Weekly Froth - December #2

  • 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.

This week we’ll have a look back at some of the more awesome disco/house/electro stuff that was released this year, unfortunately omitting loads of deserving and quality songs that I’ve thoroughly enjoyed in 2014. But here are six of my favorites to just remind you how awesome the year has been!

Track of the year: ‘Happy’ by Tomas Barfod feat. Eddie Chacon

Eddie C. comes up with an amazing performance on this WhoMadeWho solo effort by Tomas Barfod. Stating that even though all his life people have been slipping away (“they keep dying on me man”), he vows that he’s Gonna be happy. Barfod puts in some synth work and, of course, drums, changing it up for the sections in between the vocals, upping the pace a bit. Throughout the song there’s both this sense of melancholia and perseverance. It’s so easy to fold, and there’s a lot that sees people hurting, but no matter what, I’m going to make the most of it. The second time those drums come in for the chorus (around 2:30), there’s a nice bit of oomph in there to power up that message. Not on the album I believe, but in my opinion the best track he released this year (though WhoMadeWho’s ‘Hiding in Darkness’ is a killer track as well).


‘All That She Wants’ by Yolanda Be Cool feat. SYF & Fitz Helder

Don’t mind me while I enjoy a corny edit or two, but even if you take some of the most well-known tracks (like ‘All That She Wants’) as your core, you can get on heavy rotation at my house. Or perhaps because of it, as there’s a certain awesomeness about standing on the dancefloor and then getting that recognition factor in. Now, the original definitely wasn’t this deep, and those vocals make it sexy and saucy, as the boys formerly of Azari & III know how to bring some attitude into a (deep) house track. So this is the version for those late hours at that seedy club then, as all involved just give it this awesome vibe, and those vocal turns by SYF and Fitz Helder are powerful to boot. There’s something about an edit of an older tune done well, and this definitely ticks all the boxes, from changing it up to something completely different to actually working as a deep, soulful grind tune on its own. Unfortunately no Azari & III anymore, luckily the two eye catchers on stage didn’t go gently into that good night.


‘My Offence’ by Hercules And Love Affair feat. Krystle Warren

Are you as cunt as I am? That is the question. Though not Shakespearian in origin, it does pack some punch and plenty of attitude as the lads from Hercules and Love Affair, supported by Krystle Warren, are basically saying, You know what, what according to you is my offence, actually that is my essence, and I’m going to take the word cunt and run with it in pride. Now, I already like how much of an idea there is behind it (and the clip, for that matter), but that would mean nothing if the track was a soft-ass tune no one could ever dance to. Fortunately, Andy Butler knows how to make it work, giving the music itself plenty of attitude as well, reinforcing the lyrics. I believe in an interview he called it a tom heavy “bitch” track, so there you go. Plenty of toms, and a lot to get bitchin’ to. Attitude heavy, but also fun and dancey, Hercules and Love Affair made an amazing house album this year, and this is definitely a prime example off of that.

‘Ain’t No Way’ by Opal (Horse Meat Disco edit)

The start says enough, me thinks, with a woman screaming to “get your hands off of my man”. You heard her! What then happens is basically what happens any time the guys from Horse Meat Disco get their hands on things (...); an eruption of euphoric sensation. And, of course, they transform it in a killer disco dancefloor song to do some moving to. You’ve got the bass going on, the synths, but those lovely old school vocals reign supreme, as she is fighting for her man with all the attitude in the world. She goes from warning everyone around her to keep their hands off of him, but she also resorts to pleading him to “stay right here, stay right here, stay right here”. Horse Meat Disco throw a deep rhythm synth in there as mid-section, which is slowly build-up back to a disco anthem with synths and other such devices (even coming with nifty little guitar line at one point, just before the drums come in) to help out with the feel, vibe, and dance department. There’s still plenty of disco left in this world for sure, and 2014 is no exception to that.


‘Sugar’ by Alkalino

Talking about old school, the fuzz of the LP is very much part of the sound of this track. I just love the whole feel of this one, even if some of the transitions aren’t as smooth as on other tracks (though it feels almost intentional in an effort to date the sound even further back down in history). Actually, it does give it character, especially those volume jumps in the singing. I just love those old vocal tracks that are happening here, which have plenty of soul to carry this one and even give it some gravitas. Additionally, Alkalino puts in those drums and those pace changes to spice up the disco vibe a tad. The main thing about this one is the aged vibe that it provides, combining it with just enough drums to keep this one trotting forward whilst keeping the soul front and center. Just such a good example what you can achieve in terms of sound and feel if you think outside of the box a little.

‘I Know It’s A Good Thing’ by Shamir

To be honest, that ‘On The Regular’ single I could’ve lived without, though I’m still gutted I couldn’t make it to his live show earlier this week. I do love this track of his EP so much though. It’s got the kick going in the background, but it’s the piano and the fragility and desperation in the voice that gives this rather down paced track its power. Those backing vocals he brings in are also just an ace little touch that just add the right amount of feel to this one. At about the two minute mark he kills the drums for a moment, doing just the piano and his vocals that are singing “God knows I’m hard to please”, after which the beat comes back again. It’s just the mixture of all these elements, even in the delivery of the vocals (which later become more bombastic and emotional, which it has to, as the instruments do the same), that make this one both quirky and working brilliantly at the same time.



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