Most of the electronic music I’ve been listening to lately is admittedly tame compared to the stuff that introduced me to the genre. As much as I’ve loved the new albums by artists like Moderat, Darkside, Machinedrum, and The Field – and I do love those albums – they don’t really hold a flame to the gristle of Atari Teenage Riot or Skinny Puppy.
Honestly, the roughest electronic stuff I’ve been into has been Kanye’s Yeezus. Who else is making material like “On Sight“? Maybe Factory Floor. But as great as their album is, I’m more likely to sit down and zone out when a song is eight minutes long than hang on every second like I do when it’s edited down to 2:30.
Yeezus brings me to Gesaffelstein. It also brings me to Daft Punk, Brodinski, TNGHT, and Arca, but it’s Gesaffelstein who’s really intrigued me the past couple of months. The easiest way for me to describe what I’ve heard so far is that he’s starting where Justice left off and giving it the repetition and razor-sharp edge that techno owns.
His latest single, “Hate or Glory”, starts with a monotonous bouncing synth that collides with a 4/4 scream. It then builds piece by piece adding more distorted synths and high hats sitting way up front. Everything drops twice throughout the song just telling you that what you thought was loud and rough before was tame compared to what’s coming. Boy does the final onslaught deliver. It’s everything from before plus more of everything before. It’s great. It’s about what I felt when I heard “Waters of Nazareth” for the first time.
While Jay-Z’s latest album was mostly filled with disappointment, it did include this gem of production by Timbaland and J-Roc. The part that interests me most though is how closely it taps into the stuttered 8-bit sound that dominated Zomby’s One Foot Ahead of the Other EP. Not that Tom Ford is a ripoff, but it makes you wonder what Zomby could do if he tried to produce beats to be rapped on.
Tomorrow I will be seeing Hot Chip in concert for the (checking my Live Music records) seventh time. It’s safe to say that they are one of my favorite bands. In Our Hands, their fifth album, came out a couple months ago, and like the four preceding it, it’s solid as a rock. What other electro-pop band do you know that completely embraces the idea of being earnest?
“These chains you bound around my heart / complete me / baby / I would not be free” -These Chains
“And oh-oh / my heart has flown to you just like a dove / it can fly / it can fly” -Take It In
“I only wanna be your one life stand / Tell me do you stand by your whole man?” -One Life Stand
Here are some times when I have listened to SebastiAn. They are fairly random.
Mowing the lawn back in 2007 when I first discovered the Ross Ross Ross EP. He made some of the only music that had dynamics mad enough to be heard through my headphones over the lawnmower’s engine.
Waiting anxiously for the Daft Punk Alive 2007 show to begin. He opened alongside Kavinsky. It was a great set, but a great set doesn’t really compete when the GREATEST SHOW IN THE WORLD is coming on in a couple hours (and after Ratatat, who also opened the show.)
Walking around Vienna this summer. His new album came out with relatively little hype (then again, I had relatively little computer access this summer), and I remember being surprised when it showed up in my feeds. It’s a good album. Will totally blow out your eardrums if you let it.
Really hope I can catch his set at Coachella this year. I feel like I might have caught a bit of him at Coachella before, maybe during an Ed Rec block of time in the Sahara, who knows…
I deplore Skrillex and the music he makes. I cringe when people say things like, “I love dubstep! Have you heard of Skrillex?” Sure, you could make the argument that (like Deadmau5) he’s bringing people to electronic music that otherwise would have kept listening to Kings of Leon and Jack Johnson. Right. Because those are the kind of people I want at a Chemical Brothers or Aphex Twin show.
I’ve watched this trailer for Hanna probably ten times over the past few months, and I think the movie looks like it’s going to kick ass. At about 1:30 into the trailer, this song kicks in, and in the credits it says that the score is by The Chemical Brothers. Oh yes.
Well, now we have the full song that’s used in the trailer. It’s called Container Park, and it is indeed a Chem’s original.
La Roux’s debut album is a perfect example of a sleeper hit. It was released over a year ago, but only recently did the song “Bulletproof” get any serious air play. It’s a perfectly-paced record, that puts singer Eleanor Kate Jackson’s voice on top of bouncy electropop beats.
Producer Skream makes the kind of dubstep that proves that the genre deserves some credence. His music seats itself in the fog of night dripping in reverb, and it stays far away from the strain of dubstep regurgitated over and over by producers like Rusko.
This new song from Skream is his second piece that involves La Roux, the first being a remix he did of the band’s first single: In For The Kill. Both songs are amazing, so take a listen.
Skream – Finally (feat. La Roux)
La Roux – In For The Kill (Skream’s Let’s Get Ravey Remix)