Thursday, 25 September 2014

LOCAL DISK (C:) – ERROR

Please allow me to introduce Local Disk (C:) – a musicmaker from Manila, the Philippines, and part of his friend Ulzzang Pistol's collective, Youngliquidgang. I was first acquainted with his music when Zeon (that's Ulzzang Pistol) shared a guest mix for YES/NO, a representation and showcase of his collective's artists, including a track called 'Event Horizon' from Local Disk (C:). I really like typing Local Disk (C:) so I'm gonna write it fully every time.

His latest track 'Error' is a step above that one though. And in fact, his track before this, the soundtrack-to-a-crisis of 'CommandPrompt', was also a step above that one. Both of these things mean one thing: that he is developing, improving, as an artist. Anyway here is 'Error' – it sounds like this…

It's lush and expansive, a floating medley of phasing synth chords, subtle slap bass, euphoric anime-soundtrack-style strings and a lounge style beat, complete with rim shots, gloriously off-rhythm hi-hats, rapid kick flourishes – a fog of longlost memory seasoned with the joy of remembrance. It doesn't do what you expect it to do; from those first few touches of piano it takes a different direction, ending up gorgeously ornamented with a long, rich and vibrant synth solo. It's like chillwave with jazz-pop and trap / R&B influences, too… but y'know everything's always difficult to pin down, especially when it's such a medley of sounds as this.

Certainly my favourite track from Local Disk (C:) so far – but he keeps getting better, and also his previous work sounds a little different to this (in general), so I'm excited to hear what's gonna be next.



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Wednesday, 24 September 2014

SUPER MAGIC HATS – COASTLINE

This is some music from a Melbourne-based music entity called Super Magic Hats. Sometimes, according to the SoundCloud bio, it's two people, but it's "mainly" one person. Which is fine. That's fine for me.

What I also just noticed is that I was about to acronymise (?) Super Magic Hats and I got SMH. That might be intentional – if so, nice one; if not, I still love it. They tweeted me today after I mentioned something about a Tokyo band called LLLL (they make really pretty music) – after that I checked SMH's latest track and here we are: here is 'Coastline'.

It's intriguing that this downtempo cloudwave is so bleakly beautiful, so illustrative of standing on the edge of tomorrow with as many hopes as fears, scanning the sea for everything and nothing. Hey, I guess it's the nature of the inspiration for this track, which I can only assume is a coastline. It sounds like a coastline.

And it achieves this goal with crunching synth whirling around your ears, with hissing cymbals and multilayered clap-clicks and the hi-hat's frenetic mechanical tick, the fuzz of waves and wind merging into one. Wordless words soar from fore to background, disturbing the glisten of golden clouds, the tinkle of some glockenspiel type thing, making way for plums of aggressive pulsing synth to take over towards the end of the track. It's expansive and all-encompassing enough to penetrate your mind; just like staring out at the sparse horizon from the dynamic meeting of sea and earth, this track clears the mind of any needless bullshit that might happen to be stinking it up.

Um. That's it. And it in particular is taken from a forthcoming EP called Kumori (meaning "cloudy weather" or "cloudiness" in Japanese) that is not scheduled for release as much as it WILL be released at some point between now and the end of this year.



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Tuesday, 23 September 2014

TOO MANY ZOOZ – TURTLEDACTYL

I don't think that I've ever heard anything quite like this before – I almost (almost) guarantee that you, yeah you, have probably never heard anything quite like it, either. Aside from this rather incredulous sounding opening gambit, I'd like to introduce you to a trio of musicians (or as they say, "harlem born brain-squid-child") from New York City making self-styled "brasshouse" music: Too Many Zooz.

One of them plays like, a trumpet thing, another of them plays a large saxophone (?), and another is a one-man beat-progenitor aka percussionist (I guess). They create dance music that's made up only of brass and beats: all organic, all live/living instruments. With SO MUCH/MANY electronics around right now it's a refreshing take on music made to make you move your feet. It's kind of like swing, but without the big band-type structure, with more housey rhythms and looping melodies. Plus the blare of brass is p much so foreign in this context that it might as well be a new instrument.

They recently released an EP, Fanimals, which is the perfect showcase of their sound. Since I've already spent what seems like loads of time explaining their uniqueness, I'ma focus on just one song, the nicely titled 'Turtledactyl'.

Built on a foundation of booming bass drum and syncopated baritone sax blasts, the trumpet laces frenetic patterns over the top, a glorious four minutes of soulful, heartfelt dance music that is as far away from EDM as is humanly possible because there is no E involved. Not unless you count the mastering / production – little hints of infrabass and an uplifting white-noise-whoosh towards the end – courtesy of Team Supreme member, JNTHN STEIN. Reaching a subtle crescendo of harmonising brass, it's got this chemistry that you can't help but succumb to, a kind of sweaty and cheerful joy.

In comparison to the rest of the stuff on their EP, it's melodically and dynamically more tame, but there is more wildness on their EP in the form of more dubstep-y (brass-step?) numbers, and bursting-cheeks trumpet virtuosity. Good on them I say.



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