Ten Questions With Terry Gotham: 2Tone Disco

2ToneDisco Press Shot 3

Interview By Terry Gotham

1. How’s 2016 been for you two so far? Any wild party stories from touring or festival sets you’re looking forward to?
Omni – 2016 has been great. So many great things have happened but I think being an official artist at sxsw for the first time takes the cake. That whole week was just overwhelming in a good way.

James – Yea SXSW was nuts this year I feel it was a tie between that and Magfest. Magfest was giant convention with a 24 hour arcade (pretty much our heaven) and SXSW we were official artists so that was pretty crazy.

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Monday Music: La Mar, 2ToneDisco, Cade, Hotel Garuda & Lexy Panterra

34 - c7bGXQeWe’re in the thick of the sauna that is Summer in New York. So to cool off, here’s your regular quintet of tunes, upbeat, yet still relaxed, all from excellent emerging talent. Enjoy with a cold drink and a skip in your step!

Sydney duo La Mar surprised me with this one. A slow, crooning start pushes into a delightful indietronica vibe, complete with the vagaries of Asian influences, soft vocals, and some relaxed bass. Can we please start hearing shit like this on the radio in America please?!

Since everyone & their mother is playing Pokemon Go, I figured this week’s tracks had to include at least 1 tune that screams JAPAN, and 2ToneDisco are happy to provide. The fusion between J-Pop, chip and glitzy West Coast house is bouncy, peppy, but still manages to nail the the breakdown at 2min in. All in all a great effort from 2ToneDisco, so now I’ve gotta find a way to interview these cats, especially after their dope JetSet Radio remix.

Hotel Garuda has been moving up that festival booking ladder steadily. Their sound is exactly what so many people need in their day/week/festival, so I couldn’t be happier for them. This sunny remix of the hit by Kaskade & Felix Cartal takes the scintillating vocals from Ofelia K and puts a solid, fest-ready house backing under it. It won’t blow your mind, just make you relax a touch mid-set.

Lexy Panterra continues the smooth, indietronica vibe in effect this week. The soothing vocals, vaguely garage-esque beats, and a distinct lack of audio modulation/auto-tune makes for a great chill/relaxation tune, or for your super secret playlist for getting down.

CADE is a new arrival on my radar, but has an EDEN/Stephen thing going on, so they’re a welcome addition to my indietronica stable. The sweeping chord shift at 1min in is exceptional, showing that heavy modulation can work, especially if you’ve already got chops. You can feel the West Coast influences on this track, but CADE still holds his own, bringing a unique sound to a field that will be very crowded in a couple of years. Indietronica is the future of pop, you heard it here first.

Monday Music: Shahly, Simon Viklund, Cetana & San Holo

Shahly - Jigglypuff

New Monday, new music! A few fun choices this week, trying to keep the energy up since January can always be a real drag, even though it’s unseasonably balmy this year. I also added a Christmas remix, because I kept seeing the trees out on the street waiting to be picked up by the garbage men. Also, it may or may not be hard as fuck. But, I’m getting ahead of myself.

You cannot keep a serious face through this song. I dare you to try. Shahly fused Chiptune & Future Bass. The result is a whipped delight that bounces around with way too much energy. If you’re not a fan of Pokemon this might be a little too sugary for you, but if the vocal FX reminds you of old school TV watching, you’re in for a great time. The smoothness and the screaming chip chords work well with the vaguely future-infused bass. Nothing life-changing, but entertaining as hell nonetheless.

This is an odd one, but it’s going to get favorited and added to your Christmas 2016 playlist. A friend was playing Payday 2 and this came on. I needed to find the thing so I did some digging. If you’re as impressed with the vaguely hardhouse/hardstyle Christmas song remix, get at the Bandcamp for a high quality download. Can’t say I was thinking of buying PayDay, but at the same time, this Simon Viklund does some interesting work.

Every month, Dim Mak Records slides one or two tracks over the plate that really take me by surprise. I’d never been the biggest Aoki guy, but Dim Mak seems to really have an eye for new talent. This CETANA X moistbreezy tune had me dancing in my chair. The Future Bass is a perfectly adequate backing to this half-electro half-chip half-Daft Punk track. It builds into a shimmering success that I am super happy I didn’t miss. It’s a great example of where Future Bass is right now. 2016 is going to a be a great year for the genre, if this track is any indication.

San Holo takes the medal for the best DJ name we all should have come up with, but didn’t. His latest EP, Don’t Touch The Classics, adds a Future Dutch vibe to Blur, Eminem, 50 Cent & Dr. Dre. Most certainly my favorite remix on the EP, it’s got an almost, but not quite tropical vibe to it. Future Sunset, we’ll call it. Excellently reworked, San Holo earned my respect with this one. We don’t take kindly to fucking with Marshall Mathers around here, and San Holo ensured I never started sharpening my pitchfork. Kudos, see you in Episode VIII!

Ten Questions With Terry Gotham: Flexstyle

(So happy to be posting this! Flexstyle has been one of my favorite artists innovating in the dance music space for years now, and I’m honored he agreed to talk about his work & ridiculous new album, which I’ll be yammering about shortly.)

1. Tell us about your new album Perfect Getaway! What can your fans expect from the 15 track extravaganza? More than just 15 tracks, actually! There are 15 tracks officially on the digital album, but there are also a couple of bonus tracks included as well with some Oasis remix contest runners-up. Aside from that, this may be the most eclectic album I’ve ever released—certainly stays true to my name and mission of being flexible in the styles that I create! This album contains both original and remix work that I’ve completed over the last few years. It contains appearances by video game remix superstar and entertainer extraordinaire Ben Briggs, versatile EDM and VGM cohort Jamison Randall, my good friends Airdrift and dmGuillotine, and many more. In short, expect more of the same, but different! DnB, downtempo, trance, vocal synthpop, electro, progressive house, dubstep, trap, and breakbeats all make an appearance.

2. How did you join OCRemix and start doing VGM remixes? OverClocked ReMix is probably the main “home” I have as a musician, and I started participating over there in…I want to say about 2008? I got my first posted mix on the site in early 2010, I believe, after a couple of rejected mixes and a lot of participating in various competitions and events. That’s pretty much the best way to get posted over there, by the way, is to keep trying and keep participating in the community. I’ve always loved video game music, so it was only natural that I found the site and started participating. I think it was after seeing a writeup in a magazine that I actually first heard about it—might have been Computer Music or something like that. So, to properly answer your question, I don’t really remember exactly how it was I joined up, but it was definitely meant to be!
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Wu Tang Clan + Final Fantasy 3/6 = Lyrical Magicite Infused Hip Hop. [Free Download!]

I’m stunned, this is crazy delicious. Some clever fuck from Lexington, KY named 2  Mello combined two of my favorite things. Final Fantasy 6 (III in America) on SNES was a triumph of storytelling and massively creative gameplay, celebrating it’s 20th anniversary since release, yesterday. Enter The 36 Chambers, the debut album of the mighty Wu Tang Clan, is an album so critical to the global soundscape that if you don’t know what I’m talking about, EDUCATE THE MIND. The combination of the two is a mindfuck, but in one of the best ways I’ve heard in a while. Magic Ruins Everything Around Me fuses the introductory stage music with one of the most recognizable Wu tracks in history. The bass & pacing are perfect, and #2 on this album is a must listen. Figaro Kids (Track 4) shimmers with glory and continued excellent vocal usage & respect. R.E.C. The Opera works, impossibly, throwing together one of the most epic moments of all 8/16bit video gaming. However, the piece de resistance is Da Mystery of Shadow-Boxin’, without question. Chessboxin + the badass Shadow theme is something I really hope gets to the ears of one of the Wu. This one right below the words you’re reading, right here.

And what’s more, it costs zero dollars. Stream it above, or download it here. This dude did Chrono Jigga a while ago, which was dope, so give this a shot, you’ll thank me.

Midnight Music: TheFatRat Returns! Unity Is Chippy Glitchy Gorgeous!

TheFatRat - Unity

One of my truly favorite rising star artists, TheFatRat has returned. I’d been lamenting the lack of an original release from this guy for way too long, and the waiting is finally over. There’s a scintillating competence in TheFatRat’s production that can’t be matched. The chip/glitch/electro has some serious spunk without getting too heavy or serrated. The track continues the irrepressible positivity of TheFatRat’s sound, which I could not support more. The vocals arrive when they need to, and they receive the same extravagant treatment as his beats. There’s a soul to TheFatRat that I can’t wait to see expand as people discover this MUST LISTEN track. (Artwork by jordangrimmer.deviantart.com)

Midnight Music: Flexstyle Drops 2 RaveCon Mixes Which Need To Be Heard!

Flexstyle, a little known OCRemix DJ/contributor, was let loose at Saboten Con a little bit ago, and we’re all better for it. Opening the live party mix with a PrototypeRaptor electrohouse banger, this guy immediately declared he was not fucking around. Mixing into a remix of my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE level music ever, really could not win more points in my book. The Ben Briggs remix does the Flying Battery Zone (Sonic & Knuckles was a damn triumph) justice and then, there’s Bloody Beetroots! I don’t know where this kid came from, but this is the first time I’ve been convinced I wanted to go to a con in years. If the tunes sounded like this? I’d be 100% down. A particularly wonderful Green Day remix helps transition the mix into original music (but not without dropping a sweet Chemical Zone Remix, with a taunting DDR sample if I’m not mistaken) half of the mix. This is another area where Flexstyle shines. The tunes are expertly produced and pushed together. I can’t wait to hear when he starts integrating his trance & bass tracks into his live mix.

Bonus set! They let him back on the decks, which is a decision I couldn’t support more. I’m not sure how to describe this. This is Nerd Rave music. This is what I wished every chiptune show was ever. Frankly, I’d just listen to 4 hours of electro, deep house, trance & glitch remixes of video game music. If you want to play synthed out West Coast bootlegs of Sonic 3 music, I really would pay you money to do that. Is that possible? This mix even brings in electro swing, which is wonderful. I think this kind of stuff can bring a lot of introverts out of their shell. It’s easy to hear something you recognize and it’s complicated enough that it’s not doofy big room anthem shit. If Big Room is the frat in the EDM scene, this is the Anime club. And man, they look like they’re having a lot of fun.

Midnight Music: Bart Claessen – Amazonia [Chippy Big Room]

Kind of annoyed about how long I sat on this tune. I kept meaning to listen to it but the universe kept throwing shit in my way you know? However, I’m totally glad I kept it on my waiting list, because it could be the birth of an entirely new genre. This is essentially a Big Room cake with Chiptune frosting. I’m not sure how Bart did it, because the build that starts at 2 min in is gorgeous, with a ton of ambient/jungle sounds to bewilder & inspire you. The 3:30 break into (via EDMTunes) could be straight off an LSDj or a GameBoy show. Serious bleep-bloops and sweatbands, my friends.

Infected Mushroom’s Erez Doesn’t Need Ableton. He Makes Tracks In DOS.

I’m not sure how to describe the insanity of what you’re seeing, especially if you’re under the age of 20. This is a digital audio workstation, in a non-Windows/OSX environment. Yup kids, this is what they used to look like. Apparently Infected Mushroom posted this file (that works with a program called “Impulse Tracker,” that is probably older than you are) to their site a few years ago. Someone grabbed it, held it, and tossed it into their version of a DOS emulator and the running program. Audio/video capture have allowed us the magic of audio time travel, allowing us to hear what Erez & his friend Jorg sounded like decades ago. It’s a competent, if somewhat overdone Synthy Psy-infused tune that wouldn’t be out of place today. If you’re into this sort of thing, check out this surprisingly excellent cover of deadmau5’s  Ghosts ‘n’ Stuff by OxygenStar. Next time some hipster producer starts talking shit, ask him if he’s produced using this shit. Then smile and nod.

Midnight Music: Saskrotch – Nintendo Breakz Volume 2 [Chip Hop/Glitch]

I have been waiting for this for literally a decade. In 2004, the Nintendo Breakz Volume One was released. A tight joint of cuts, mixed samples and hilariously on point remixed 8bit themes. Zelda, Mario, Metroid, whatever else you wanted, it was there. The mastermind behind this, Saskrotch, spiraled me into months of listening to breakcore, glitch, hip hop and some terrifying IDM.  His mixes were the stuff of legend. And just in case you don’t believe me, check his new one out below. The combination of glitch, hip hop, chiptune, breakbeats and the occasional dollop of D&B/Jungle, will get you moving. Just don’t play it for anyone who wears J. Crew. They might freak out a bit.