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.

Earworm Of The Month: Alexander Popov – Elegia [Actual Trance]

I’ve listened to this daily for weeks. It figures into my commute at some point during the day. Sometimes to amp up, sometimes to recharge after the day, but unless a long set has my attention, this is THE track. I’ve been watching the rise of the new splinter factions in Trance (illustrated superbly by my boy Matt @ EDMTunes), and one of the guys who came out of nowhere is Alexander Popov. Amrada picked this kid up and he just spun at Sensation in Russia. There’s a punch to the bassline I’ve not heard in a while and the chords are classic trance perfection. The build is, even for a retail track, long and drawn into a gorgeous throbbing break with a transition that doesn’t include some obnoxious drop. That’s right, it’s not anthem trance, it’s just that deep, flowing Trance sound that you love. I love it, maybe you need to listen to it a few times to see where I’m coming from. Or possibly blast it while driving/exercising/riding dolphins. What’s that you say? You’d love a mix of this and a bunch of other Alexander Popov tracks so you can just dig into this trance sound? Check out below and thank me later.