Monday Music: WNWD, Autograf, Solstis, Lido & Wolfgang Lohr

8t5YJApril’s grinding along, if you’re flagging, rely on me. Got 5 soulful tunes for your Monday. By the time these are done, it’ll be time for lunch and you’ll deserve a break, so let’s get into it.

V continues to be one of the most important people to follow at Fresh New Tracks. WNWD coming out of Miami, taking me by total surprise. Higher has a number of electronic elements, but it’s quite different than what I expect out of South Beach. Low-key R&B for the win up in this. The vocal work hits all of the marks needed for the bass & production really shine. Great work & they earned the follow with this track, most assuredly.

Autograf has been a sleeper favorite of mine for years now. Really happy they’ve broken out of Soundcloud purgatory and arrived on the festival circuit, hitting Coachella & Euphoria Festival this month alone. This kind of moody bass might be a little chilled out for a Monday morning, but the guitar work makes up for it. It’s got a vintage Ratatat feel to it, which is a high compliment if anyone remembers their early work. Great work, can’t wait to hear basics chatting up this new Autograph band after their set in Indio at the end of the month.

Coming at you with some new (to me) talent out of Honolulu & Chicago, Solstis. Three minutes forty moves by quickly, straddling the line between Chip, Trap and Future, but never getting too big for its britches. The chorus shimmers and the underlying bass is one of the more soothing I’ve heard in a minute. It’s got an almost West Coast vibe, but it feels like it came from the dorm rooms at a tech school in Cali, if that makes sense.

Lido has hit his stride and we are all better for it. This video is a perfect indication that he’s embracing his rising star position & digging in. The signature viscous rhythm & bass vibe that we love him for is here, with lovely vocals and a surprisingly good video. This has anthem all over it, but not in a big room way. If we can get Future Bass & Chilltrap to the mainstage this year, I’ll be a very happy man.

Rounding out the tunes today is an edit by one German electroswing DJ, of an original tune by another German electroswing DJ. I had no idea the stuff ran so deep in Germany, but this is jolly dope. The hustle is warm, the piano on-point, and the progression really lends itself to some infectious booty shaking. It’s hard to resist this one, and it’s good for all ages. The German vocals are oddly relaxing, while the pacing doesn’t let up. Drop this into a wedding reception & watch people of all ages jump up and down. Great work Wolfgang, keep it up!

Armin Van Buuren Partners With Heineken To Get You To Dance More & Drink Slow.

While I can’t speak to the research methodology or rigor of the double-blind population, Heineken has given me a reason to pay attention to them for a moment or two. I saw this #DMDS hashtag pop up yesterday when Armada dropped Armin Van Buuren’s latest video (below). The Armin Van Buuren tune is solid, as always, and we’ll probably hear it a lot in the coming weeks as it filters through the trance podcast universe. What got my attention though, was the continued emphasis on #DMDS.

Apparently, people listening to non-shit music drink more slowly. This was proven by having some random DJ spin one evening at an unnamed Miami club, then have AvB spin the next night. Drink purchases dropped by 40%. This definitely goes into the  “needs a crapload of further research” bin, but it is true that dancing people drink less. If Heineken wants to get behind this kind of PSA-style promotion, with dance music being at the forefront of the campaign, getting people to cut it up instead of drink it down, sure, what the hell, I’m in. #DMDS

Borgore gets kicked off the decks in Miami

For the record, I don’t care for Borgore most of the time. He’s a bit too buzz-saw’y for my tastes, but frankly, the fact that he’s the third Triple-A DJ to be kicked off the decks on South Beach is way more important than whatever he spins. 

Ultra Weekend #2 may get the Ban Hammer.

This is the declaration by the City of Miami that, in no uncertain terms, the second week of Ultra Music Festival is not going down. I think it’s kind of amazing that the city is contemplating being just like NO. And while there is definitely still time for palms to be greased, I severely doubt the situation is going to be cheered forward, especially with fewer than 3 months to go. The breakdown of DJs was never posted, but what strikes me was the weird lack of thinking on the part of the festival extenders. I’ve been to Ultra twice, once when it was a one day festival & once when it was a two day extravaganza. Either I’m getting older or the Red Bull is getting stronger, but the idea that people would just continue to kick it in Miami for the week then rock out again the next weekend exhausts me just thinking about it.

I think we can sometimes forget just how completely psychotic the amount of detritus, destruction and dumb-ass people an event the size of Ultra Music Festival generates. The systems created to deal with the people are masterful and work as well as they can for the generally understood “long weekend of shenanigans” that UMF generally inflicts. The Winter Music Festival is a much more polite affair, without so much of the explodey drunk of UMF. The amount of time/manpower/resources the city consumes to clean up the event must be enormous and I think they took one look at what not only the second weekend, but the incidental week of ridiculousness that was incoming between them, and went, oh HELL no.

But, so, you heard it here folks, as of now, Ultra Music Festival may be back to a one weekend affair. Any bets on whether this will change or not?