Mondays inherently fall victim to a bad reputation, but it’s not the calendar’s fault. It’s not even your boss’ fault. It’s really up to us to set the pace we want for the week. Traffic will always be there, the bus will always be late, and your back bike tire will always be flat. Instead of quoting Office Space and drowning yourself in political memes, use this as an opportunity to build your momentum for the workweek. It’s all perspective fam. So here are five tracks to get your auto-pilot lubed up before the weekend makes it’s way back.
Silverclub returns to the spotlight this week with the music video premier of “Back to the Start”, exclusively on T&A! The song comes hot off their newest EP, NOW available on Red Laser Records! Just as the title implies, these guys are onto new beginnings. The release marks the jubilant end to a long and bumpy road, personifying everything this Indie project has set out to accomplish. Backed with the new haunting vocals of Henrietta Smith-Rolla and a fresh batch of tunes, these Brits are tearing it up. Watch their brand new music video, directed by Torie Zalben, and check out the ‘Back to the Start EP’ below!
So far 2014 has treated Daniel Avery very well. In a very short span of time he has gone from resident DJ at Fabric London, to Phantasy Sound‘s latest success story. Not even a year after the release of his brain-tickling ‘Drone Logic’ LP in 2013, Avery is already playing American nightclubs alongside craft legends like Simian Mobile Disco and Bicep. By the end of this year, every corner of the Earth will have gotten a taste of his dream-like Minimal style. So let’s see, made his mark in the studio? Check. Strutting his stuff on stage? BIG Check. What else are we missing? Oh yes that’s right, the new video!
Earlier this week he premiered the esoteric music video for the album track, “Knowing We’ll Be Here” on Dazed and Confused Magazine! Now you can experience his subterranean, acid-laced sounds on a visual level. This transcends your ordinary electronic music video (if such a thing even exists), however. The theme of the video is euphoria through death, specifically drowning. Joshua Lipworth, the director of the video, said he “got the idea from the euphoric distorted drones which sounded [to me] like a kind of drowning sensation”. Studies have shown that a person drowning can reach a brief state of euphoria, a byproduct of the oxygen starvation. While this subject is creepy enough as it is, Lipworth somehow managed to capture the true atmosphere of such an experience on film. Through his use of underwater filming and lighting effects, and Avery’s unique sound manipulations, the two have a formed a dark yet beautiful insight into death itself. We’re not trying to get all Emocore on you folks, we promise we’re happy people here. We can’t pass on aesthetics though. Avery has a higher agenda in his music that we may never fully understand, but it’s clear that the world is beginning to recognize his talent. These two have come together to form something everyone can relate to in their own personal way. We don’t usually care for music videos, but this is a welcomed exception. Visual and audio creativity have come together as one unit. Watch the brand new video for “Knowing We’ll Be Here” below!
“The one thing I knew was that I wanted this record to be a trip. All the best artists and DJs, they take the audience with them when they play; people lock into their world for a few hours and can’t easily step out again. You’re with them for the ride. When I go out, I want to give myself up to music. That was the idea for the album.” -Daniel Avery on his ‘Drone Logic’ album
After two years of predominately DJ gigs in the States, Simian Mobile Disco will play as a live act again this Fall! In addition to dropping their 5th studio album ‘Whorl‘, they will perform the entire thing for US audiences. The album itself was recorded in the live format, so what better way to bring this new music into the world? After an official album-release party in London, the duo will journey across the pond for 8 live dates in America starting in Washington, DC. Expect the unexpected friends, Jas Shaw and James Ford have cooked up something fresh for this run. See if they’re playing near you in the dates posted below!
Today Simian Mobile Disco released a preview of their new track “Parson’s Nose”, you can listen to it now! The track was produced as an exclusive contribution to the upcoming 2020 Vision compilation album, titled ‘Content’, being presented by Ralph Lawson. In celebration of their 20th Anniversary, the label has called for 20 exclusive songs from artists all over the UK, and more. The album showcases new remixes from Groove Armada, Psychemagik, PBR Streetgang, and new originals from Waze & Odyssey, Eats Everything, Huxley, and so much more. Looks pretty tasty doesn’t it? Oh and if you pre-order the album now, you will instantly receive a free download of this song!
Pre-Order ‘Content’ here! https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/ralph-lawson-content-bonus/id881464274
May is finally upon us ladies and gentlemen and that means blue skies, backyard BBQ sessions, and the first mow of the season. It also means sunny drives with your windows rolled down, and your speakers turned up as you travel to your next live music destination. Don’t listen to the act you’re going to see on the way there though, it’s bad luck! You guys will have plenty of opportunities for that, maybe too many perhaps. This month is STACKED with live dates across the Northeast, it’s absurd. We’ve provided you with a guide to some tasty events in NYC, Boston, Philadelphia, and several others, and there are always more. If your fancy doesn’t get tickled, well we might just not be a good fit for you. Safe travels friends, we’ll definitely be on the scene for several of these dates!
TONIGHT Umphrey’s McGee (release party!) @ Brooklyn Bowl- Brooklyn, NY [jamband, funk, rock]
TONIGHT Conspirator @ The Abbey Bar- Harrisburg, PA
5/7 Odesza and Manic Focus @ The Middle East- Boston, MA [experimental, dub, glitch]
5/7 Fikus and MUN @ Brooklyn Bowl- Brooklyn, NY [jamband, live, electronic]
5/8 The Breakfast @Johnny D’s- Somerville, MA [funk, jamband]
5/8 Joy Orbison @ Output- Brooklyn, NY [house]
5/8 Turbine @ Black Oak Tavern- Oneonta, NY [jamband, rock, folk]
5/9 Optimo (rare US appearance!) @ Output- Brooklyn, NY [house]
5/9 Pleasurekraft and Oliver$ (Kraftwerk showcase) @ Bijou Nightclub- Boston,MA [techno tribute, house, various] Read the rest of this entry
Jas Shaw of the UK minimal house kings Simian Mobile Disco was the focus of some controversy this past weekend.
Last Friday Jas Shaw took the stage in Warsaw, Poland to commence his DJ set only to have his music received in a rather unpleasant reaction. Fans gathered at the Wynajecia Club for what they thought to be one of the reputable live performances from the duo, but were instead greeted with the polar opposite. Promoters billed the event as a live show unbeknownst to Shaw or James Ford (the other half of SMD). When only one of the two members appeared on turntables, and the live rig nowhere to be seen, dismal confusion ensued quickly. Although having just released a new live album recorded during their fall tour, they initially wanted the show billed as a DJ presentation. Due to the fact that the event flyers and advertisements were in Polish, the error sadly escaped the attention of Simian. By neglecting their wishes, whether intentional or not, the promoters of this event showed an immense lack of professionalism which was unfortunately reflected on the artists themselves.
Musically the live act is a lot different from their DJ sets and also carries a higher rate for selling out venues, which probably contributed to the frustration. Despite being the same artist and though there are similarities, the contents of the two vary in many ways. For example their remix catalogue is more limited to the confines of the turntables, as opposed to their productions which are tweaked and performed live, and often improvised.
In response to the solemn atmosphere Shaw, played the event from 1:30am to sunrise and James Ford made a formal apology yesterday. Any artists of principal are indifferent to whether or not their show sells out or make headlines. However, nobody wants a house full of angry disappointed fans, especially when the artist in question is inadvertently to blame. Put simply, bad promotion is substantially worse than no promotion, and these two made respectable gestures to give their fans some closure.
SIMIAN MOBILE DISCO w/ DAVE P AND JDH @ THE FONDA THEATER, L.A. 11/30/12
Its that time of year for Simian Mobile Disco to hit North America with their esteemed live performance. Last Friday they brought the heat to the Fonda Theater for their first US gig since September, also in the City of Angels, at Goldenvoice’s FYF Festival. No doubt 2012 has proven to be a busy year for the duo having released a full album and follow-up EP within just seven months, and touring heavily across the globe. But that’s their modus operandi. A perfect machine, meeting almost every need one fan could warrant.
Dave P and JDH opened with a minimal paced house set. Despite them holding a relatively menial rank in the grand scheme of honest artistry, these guys are always enjoyable. They seem to a have relationship of some unknown degree with the guys of SMD; I’ve witnessed them open for the duo three times this year and they’ve contributed to several past tours as well. Both Dave and JDH are partners in Fixed NYC, who have put on gigs for SMD across Manhattan multiple times over the years. These two certainly have experience in buttering up the crowd for headliners, although they did display a touch of rookie irony when they played “Seraphim” from Simian’s Unpatterns album just before they were take to the limelight. All in all they were again successful in getting the party started for their much anticipated followers.
The new album translated beautifully live, much better than I had expected and my expectations were quite high. There are so many aspects to Simian Mobile that differ them from their peers, but most of those characteristics lie within their live experience. Its similar to hearing a jam band play if they were personified through a set of turntables. Always possessing an odd, psychedelic approach to dance music, the material they’ve put out this year is a large step away from previous works like Temporary Pleasure, or Attack, Sustain, Decay, Release, and for the better. So much content is strategically flowing through deceivingly simple music, and that is the creative genius that I love about these two artists. Carefully delivered London-style house beats, low tones, descendant angelic synths, and dark crunchy progressions are key designs for the gentle, seamless plunge into a cozy, yet strange abyss the crowd was nestled in. Although they stand very relevant in electronic music, especially minimal genres, they consistently stay devoid of common formulas and can improvise a whole segment of dreamlike sequences of sound without even needing drum tracks.
Very well known for their theatrics, they’ve really dulled down their light show. Always remaining just under the mainstream radar while simultaneously maintaining a dedicated and large fanbase, I think this may have the intention. Jas Shaw and James Ford, the collective sagacity behind the SMD moniker, stated in interviews that Unpatterns would be a very different direction from their past works and that it was centered exclusively around the music that they wanted to make. Little did they know that their new album would explode on the charts and result in a much broader audience. A decrease in visual stimulus just puts more focus on the music, which puts them completely in control, and the end result is remarkable.
The “I Believe” closer is really difficult to explain. The song on its own its nothing short of majestic. For some reason, in my head at least, it always brings me to the image of Ryan Phillippe lifelessly sprawled in the middle of the street after being hit by a car. However since Jas and James are confirmed masters of sound-production, there is nothing like seeing it performed live. Intrinsic to their unique qualities, no set is ever the same, and the version sewn at the Fonda was just breathtaking. The song started in a standard fashion, however when it came time to cue that unmistakable bass drop after the first verse, it spiraled into an undeniable display of accented musicianship and integrity. The snyths were noticeably crisp and emphasized in a way I’ve never heard them, or anyone else for that matter, pull off. Each note is brought to life with such a delicate execution, no one can even come close to capturing such an organic feel with this genre like they manage to.
If Ketamine was converted into audio frequencies I have a hunch it would sound a lot like Simian Mobile Disco. This show will rank as one of the best I’ve seen this year, and I suggest you find yourself at one of the remaining tour dates.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far, away…Jas Shaw and James Ford formed Simian Mobile Disco and flew their complex sound making machinery to Earth for a benign invasion of the planet, much to our delight I might say. Cult followed, intentionally never breaking mainstream, they’re world famous and electronic’s best kept secret at the same time. The two are releasing a new EP, A Form of Change , just months after unleashing their 4th studio album Unpatterns, and with it a brand new stage setup for their live performances. Los Angeles got a sneak peak of it at the FYF festival downtown earlier this September, but the Minimal “kings” will be hitting the whole country this fall for their Us Tour, and you seriously don’t want to miss it.
- North American Tour Dates
- Sep 1-2 Los Angeles, CA – FYF Fest
- Nov 30 Los Angeles, CA – Fonda Theater
- Dec 01 San Francisco, CA – Mezzanine
- Dec 02 Portland, OR – Wonder Ballroom
- Dec 03 Seattle, WA – Neumos
- Dec 04 Vancouver, BC – Venue
- Dec 06 New York, NY – Webster Hall
- Dec 07 Philadelphia, PA – Making Time
- Dec 08 Washington, DC – Rock N Roll Hotel
- Dec 11 Boston, MA – Paradise
- Dec 13 Montreal, QC – Club Soda
- Dec 14 Toronto, ON – Hoxton
- Dec 15 Chicago, IL – Bottom Lounge
- Dec 16 – 19 Bahamas – S.S. Coachella
- Dec 19 – 23 Jamaica – S.S. Coachella
Camp Bisco Music Festival, presented by the northeastern EDM capitalists Meat Camp Productions, held its 11th annual bash at the Indian Lookout Country Club in Mariaville, New York this past weekend. Acts included Big Boi, Skrillex, Bassnectar, Porter Robinson, Lotus, Oliver, Simian Mobile Disco and A-trak to name a few. As the legendary festival hosts The Disco Biscuits took the stage in anticipated eruption Friday night, true fans of tech house gathered in small number for the Abakus late-night set in the Big Dance Tent.
Abakus initiated the set with digital ferocity. Energy embedded in the first two and half minutes of the mix grants him a swift grip on the audience. Captivating every moment, intrinsic to his trademarked demeanor of an iconic space bass phenomenon, he never missed a beat. Psychedelic rythms and space born crescendos cross over high speed perpetual basslines, self-narrating their journey through the cosmos, and creating an atmosphere both composite of high-tempo industrial chaos and metaphysical insight. Although juxtaposed to the Biscuits, Abakus prevailed with an incredible demonstration of his abilities. Its house music on a cellular plane.
The show itself is performed on Ableton Live with synths and controllers similar to a large portion of DJ’s across the globe, but what sets the great divide between he and them is the fact hes spinning tracks he originally produced and sweat over. As a consequence of his pristine and concise productions, expectations from the fans give surmounting pressure to his on-stage performances, making every event pivotal in his expansion. My first encounter with him was one for the books, taking a headline late night slot at the Big Up Festival in August 2010 where his two hour set(which had to be cut off) made respected spinsters Orchard Lounge look like slackers. The BB King afterparty in NYC and opening slot at the Auditorium Theater in Chicago in late December left fans with a desire for more however, lacking in the unremitting intensity found in his earlier performances in 2010/2011. Support of the Disco Biscuits’ past new years tour served as menial evidence of his capacity to disappoint, but behind the tables, he is a human being(a notion I consider to be arguable) and we forgive him. Abakus quickly persevered these extraneous times and continued to patton his own avant-garde style while maintaining the traditional club house atmosphere that seems to be forgotten in time.
The entity Abakus is the brainchild of Russ Davies, hailing from electro clubbland London. One could compare his sound to a bit of Wolfgang Gartner meets the Chemical Brothers, but unlike many of his peers, Davies is not limited to the restrictions of genre. Finding his niche in both worlds being a producer and live performer after 10 years experience, his project has taken a life of its own as a bass driven Frankenstein. His other monster creation as the alias Cinnamon Chasers, a nu-disco house project more adroit in remixes and edits, has received loads of success as well. He is a master of his own universe. Basically every song he produces gains instant success. Last years release of Prisms, on Modus Records,left critics singing his praises and recently Davies has found a home in the top of the Beatport Charts with the release of Abakus’ third album Futurism Pt1, also on Modus Records.
Precise execution of his serpentine beats and a staunchly tasteful fanbase make Russ Davies’ ascension to greatness inevitable. This years Camp Bisco set was a strong reminder of who the boss of psyche-house is. The performance, featuring tracks from his latest release, was available for live stream on the newly launched DJCN.com and you can listen to the soundboard on Soundcloud now!