Monday Music: Alexander Popov, Makam, SG Lewis, Renard & Norfair!

Now that we’ve finally reached summer proper, we can push into the perkier, punchier side of the music spectrum. A bunch of genres are coming your way, so get your office dance party shoes ready!
Alexander Popov is one of those gems east of the Danube that the West desperately needs. His masterful use of anthem elements in his hard trance create a post-big room feel that has already found a home in A State of Trance & other trance podcasts. I’ve blogged about him before, and I’ll totally be blogging about him again, so strap in & enjoy the ride.
Stamp The Wax coming at you with a low-key stunner of a tune. This slow-building, simmering house track never gets in your face, but delivers, especially if you’re the type of dancer who picks up the beat minutes before the rest of the crowd. It pulls into a delightful, uptempo jam that would feel at home in dozens of venues across the city. Prime DJ material by Makam.

SG Lewis is slowly getting the attention he deserves, and after collabs with people like Gallant, that climb should accelerate significantly. Shimmering vocals support a groovy, upbeat bassline, funky guitar work and strong indie sensibilities. It breaks into a gorgeous, disco-infused indie track that should get quite a lot of love in the coming weeks. You heard it here first!

This retro track got stuck in my head over the weekend, so I had to share it. Renard, now LapFox reworked this with another artist, and I gotta tell you, I can’t get enough of this sound. It’s terrifying to music newbies, but the fusion between chiptune & breakcore will always bring a smile to my face. The nostalgia is in full effect here, but the broken bass & beats give it a totally modern vibe that only the best of the Mega Man X soundtrack came close to approximating.

Norfair comes at us with a nightcore remix of Above & Beyond. Remixing AvB is not easy and if you mess it up, you’ll have their legions of fans howling for blood in between bouts of crying over AvB feels. However, I think this re-work has enough going on with it to earn respect. This uptempo remix celebrates the original AvB elements while pushing it into more rave friendly territory. Which gives all of us without room for a piano on stage next to the decks a chance to get those AvB feels into the crowd without reducing them to a whimpering mess. Great work by Norfair, can’t wait to see what he does next.

Monday Music: Alex H, Elephante, Virtual Riot, Fred V & Graffix, Jarreau Vandal

This week is off to a rough start, so hug your loved ones, and sink into Monday’s new music. Got some choice uplifting cuts from the best in the business for you.

Kaskade’s not an easy guy to remix, but every once and a while someone manages to knock it out of the park. Alex H is a Zimbabwean producer who made it to Manchester, where he’s pushing out some of the smoothest, positivity-infusing tunes that I’ve heard in months. His remix glides along for nine minutes, a sonic odyssey that never clashes with Kaskade’s vocals. It freshly uses the original elements in a way that would find a home among many of NYC’s rooftop DJ events. I hope to hear it at a couple before fall.

Elephante has successfully transformed from Soundcloud superstart to emerging headline contender. After a string of dope remixes and originals, he’s taken the next step, remixing his own ish. This is a somewhat advanced move, usually only attempted by Daft Punk tier artists, but considering his success at reworking Closer, I can’t wait to see him drop live sets using an Elephant-infused pyramid. It’s a heavier electro remix than anything he’s done for a while, but it works perfectly. After hearing this track, I really want to see Elephante & TheFatRat tour together, because this could be the birth of a new style of electro-pop that could take LA by storm. This is top down, driving up the Cali coast music, so hop to it.

Virtual Riot has been a source of quality on the heavier side of electro, dubstep and almost-chip for years, but I have to say, I’m really digging this shift. The FutureLectro debuted by This Song Is Sick (Big Ups to Rishty) is an expertly executed example of the sweet spot forward looking production, anthem vibes and broken beat syncopated rhythmic work can be. The stuttering vocals compliment the bass perfectly, so rock this at high volume.

Fred V & Graffix continue to amaze me. While producing some of the best drum & bass found anywhere in the world, their new album shows a breadth of talent that even us die hard fans didn’t anticipate. Can someone classify this tune for me? Is it Pop & Bass? Indie DB? I don’t know how to label this, except as triumphant, euphoric and hopeful for a better tomorrow. Given the events of the weekend, it’s more needed than ever.

My girl numichuu made sure I didn’t miss this deep cut, and I’m so glad she’s keeping an eye out and yelling into the internet about dope tunes like this. Jarreau Vandal has an exceptional sense when it comes to understated deep house. It’s a subtle, funkily crafted tune with a lot of inventive tonality and sample use. Mr. Vandal is on my “to watch” list for 2016, and numichuu needs to be on your TL.

Ten Questions With Terry Gotham: Floatinurboat

I promised you that I’d dig deep to find the best emerging talent from all over the world, and floatinurboat is exactly the artist I created this blog to promote. The smooth, effortlessness of his production jives with a sonic aesthetic that would be right at home in a Porter Robinson or Madeon set. Someone tell Porter we’ve found a new opener for him, at least, once he’s old enough to get into the club!
my face1. When did you start producing? Did you play any instruments before you started?
I first started producing when I was around 14, my dad got me FL11 and I just completely fell in love with the program and producing. I wasn’t completely new to music though because I had been playing piano for 10 years at the time (now 12).
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