Thursday 25 September 2014


Please allow me to introduce Local Disk (C:) – a musicmaker from Manila, the Philippines, and part of his friend Ulzzang Pistol's collective, Youngliquidgang. I was first acquainted with his music when Zeon (that's Ulzzang Pistol) shared a guest mix for YES/NO, a representation and showcase of his collective's artists, including a track called 'Event Horizon' from Local Disk (C:). I really like typing Local Disk (C:) so I'm gonna write it fully every time.

His latest track 'Error' is a step above that one though. And in fact, his track before this, the soundtrack-to-a-crisis of 'CommandPrompt', was also a step above that one. Both of these things mean one thing: that he is developing, improving, as an artist. Anyway here is 'Error' – it sounds like this…

It's lush and expansive, a floating medley of phasing synth chords, subtle slap bass, euphoric anime-soundtrack-style strings and a lounge style beat, complete with rim shots, gloriously off-rhythm hi-hats, rapid kick flourishes – a fog of longlost memory seasoned with the joy of remembrance. It doesn't do what you expect it to do; from those first few touches of piano it takes a different direction, ending up gorgeously ornamented with a long, rich and vibrant synth solo. It's like chillwave with jazz-pop and trap / R&B influences, too… but y'know everything's always difficult to pin down, especially when it's such a medley of sounds as this.

Certainly my favourite track from Local Disk (C:) so far – but he keeps getting better, and also his previous work sounds a little different to this (in general), so I'm excited to hear what's gonna be next.

☟ Local Disk (C:) Social Media Presence ☟

Wednesday 24 September 2014


This is some music from a Melbourne-based music entity called Super Magic Hats. Sometimes, according to the SoundCloud bio, it's two people, but it's "mainly" one person. Which is fine. That's fine for me.

What I also just noticed is that I was about to acronymise (?) Super Magic Hats and I got SMH. That might be intentional – if so, nice one; if not, I still love it. They tweeted me today after I mentioned something about a Tokyo band called LLLL (they make really pretty music) – after that I checked SMH's latest track and here we are: here is 'Coastline'.

It's intriguing that this downtempo cloudwave is so bleakly beautiful, so illustrative of standing on the edge of tomorrow with as many hopes as fears, scanning the sea for everything and nothing. Hey, I guess it's the nature of the inspiration for this track, which I can only assume is a coastline. It sounds like a coastline.

And it achieves this goal with crunching synth whirling around your ears, with hissing cymbals and multilayered clap-clicks and the hi-hat's frenetic mechanical tick, the fuzz of waves and wind merging into one. Wordless words soar from fore to background, disturbing the glisten of golden clouds, the tinkle of some glockenspiel type thing, making way for plums of aggressive pulsing synth to take over towards the end of the track. It's expansive and all-encompassing enough to penetrate your mind; just like staring out at the sparse horizon from the dynamic meeting of sea and earth, this track clears the mind of any needless bullshit that might happen to be stinking it up.

Um. That's it. And it in particular is taken from a forthcoming EP called Kumori (meaning "cloudy weather" or "cloudiness" in Japanese) that is not scheduled for release as much as it WILL be released at some point between now and the end of this year.

☟ Super Magic Hats Social Media Presence ☟

Tuesday 23 September 2014


I don't think that I've ever heard anything quite like this before – I almost (almost) guarantee that you, yeah you, have probably never heard anything quite like it, either. Aside from this rather incredulous sounding opening gambit, I'd like to introduce you to a trio of musicians (or as they say, "harlem born brain-squid-child") from New York City making self-styled "brasshouse" music: Too Many Zooz.

One of them plays like, a trumpet thing, another of them plays a large saxophone (?), and another is a one-man beat-progenitor aka percussionist (I guess). They create dance music that's made up only of brass and beats: all organic, all live/living instruments. With SO MUCH/MANY electronics around right now it's a refreshing take on music made to make you move your feet. It's kind of like swing, but without the big band-type structure, with more housey rhythms and looping melodies. Plus the blare of brass is p much so foreign in this context that it might as well be a new instrument.

They recently released an EP, Fanimals, which is the perfect showcase of their sound. Since I've already spent what seems like loads of time explaining their uniqueness, I'ma focus on just one song, the nicely titled 'Turtledactyl'.

Built on a foundation of booming bass drum and syncopated baritone sax blasts, the trumpet laces frenetic patterns over the top, a glorious four minutes of soulful, heartfelt dance music that is as far away from EDM as is humanly possible because there is no E involved. Not unless you count the mastering / production – little hints of infrabass and an uplifting white-noise-whoosh towards the end – courtesy of Team Supreme member, JNTHN STEIN. Reaching a subtle crescendo of harmonising brass, it's got this chemistry that you can't help but succumb to, a kind of sweaty and cheerful joy.

In comparison to the rest of the stuff on their EP, it's melodically and dynamically more tame, but there is more wildness on their EP in the form of more dubstep-y (brass-step?) numbers, and bursting-cheeks trumpet virtuosity. Good on them I say.

☟ Too Many Zooz Social Media Presence ☟

Saturday 20 September 2014


It's that time again. Someone donates a hefty portion of their time in order to create a nice little mix for anybody who wants to hear it. There is no exclusivity here, no whatever, we just asked whether Ushua would wanna make a mix for YES/NO or not and he said yes. Here we are. Recently this LA-based producer remixed a track by Jaust called 'Feel The Smoke Rise' with some seriously pugilistic footwork zing. Other than that, there's not much else to say.

With the mix he was gonna put together, he said he wanted to represent or at least showcase his collective, Na Radhi (like Ulzzang Pistol did with his mix a couple of months back). I learnt that "Na radhi" means "with pleasure" in Swahili; "We like to take that thought into our production and just make music we enjoy listening to ourselves," explains Ushua. "Our goal as a collective is to release as much good content as possible and grow." Alongside fellow member, Lo Key Dst, they want to connect with other likeminded musicmakers, release their creations and collaborate with them.

We have studios set up where we live so it's our goal to create as much as possible. Bedroom producers as most would say.

A recent discovery will also be the debut release for the collective-slash-label: "Forthcoming on Na Radhi our debut will feature DJ Unlimited Breadsticks' Grissinni Ghost EP," Ushua tells me. "We met him over the internet and he wanted to put out a release, and Lo Key and I remixed a track also." It's this combo of connectivity and communication that seems to be at the heart of this collective – it is rooted wholly in the internet: a tool for deep, wide searches on SoundCloud for new & unique music, and a way to share these and other things. "Lo Key and I bounce ideas off each other with different aspects of our production. We help each other grow as artists which is a really good thing," says Ushua. "Having similar influences in beats and other types of music, always good to trade files with someone who has a good iTunes..."

His mix is a testament to all things big and beautiful in a world built with bricks of trap and footwork, from the quasi-religious experience of Fatima Al Qadiri's track 'Szechuan', where traditional Chinese sounds meet a kind of mystical grime from under the ground in some desert somewhere, to the synth-soaked breakbeats-in-space of Lockah and Eloq's coproduction, 'Jupiter', and everything in between – Young Triforce Cat Baron's heartbreaking 'Usagi Sadness' and the clever electronic chill of the actually brilliant 'Dayum' by cln.

Ushua talks about it. "The mix is a wide variety of styles from halftime to footwork/cinematic and everything in between, much like Na Radhi there is a nice variety spanning all types of influences and genres," he says. "There are [also] a couple unreleased bootlegs/reworks and a recent release from Na Radhi's Old Ransom for ILoveMakonnen."

But I think you've probably read enough for now. Big thanks to Ushua. Please enjoy the mix.

• T R A C K L I S T •
  1. Ringatone - I'm Sprung (Joey Edit)
  2. Vybz Kartel - My Crew
  3. Ushua – SeanDaWhite (Demo)
  4. dd elle – Kind 2 U (Demo)
  5. Mr. Carmack - Extra
  6. Young Triforce Cat Baron – Usagi Sadness
  7. Ba-kuura – Dream Sim
  8. ILoveMakonnen – I Mix My (Ushua Adn Edit)
  9. Fatima Al Qadiri – Szechuan
  10. Arnold – IDC
  11. cln – Dayum
  12. DJ Paypal X Ticklish – Worst Behavior
  13. DJ Unlimited Breadsticks – ??? (Ushua X Lo Key Dst Remix) Forthcoming on Na Radhi
  14. Lockah & Eloq – Jupiter
  15. Ryan Hemsworth – Weird Life (Druid Cloak Remix)
  16. Jagged Edge – He Can't Love You (Ticklish Reboot)
  17. T-Pain – Drankin' Patna (Ushua Remix)
  18. ILoveMakonnen – Club Going Up on a Tuesday (Old Ransom Bootleg)

☟ Ushua Social Media Presence ☟
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Quite possibly the most fantastic song we've heard from VentureX ever, but then again there's ultracool this footwork-flavoured track (called 「フットワーク」 which actually says 'footwork') from a while ago, and also VX's recent album Together released via supra-chilled label/collective Stratford CT., which is a go-to thing for me recently; it's been warm, food & drink's been had outside, I stick this album on – it suits the mood. So I take it back. It's probably not the MOST fantastic song ever from this person, but still: it IS fantastic.

It's the initial seasoning that had me, that repeating bit of FX-laden synth and the spicy bongos, both setting the scene for a track that's like cool sour cream on top of heavily jalapeñoed nachos: it's rich, warm, zingy and fresh all the same time. Samples arrive for the most part in unintelligible mouth movements, until the song's final part where its title loops again and again in a tirade of casual longing (after some searching, I reckon the sample is from Tegan and Sara's 'I Was a Fool').

A detail that stands out: A clap gets some spotlight and reverbs out into the middle of nowhere, painting a picture of even more depth in this funky house themed feast, already thick with layered sounds and seemingly perfect sample placement.

Chords twinge in satisfying syncopation sounding like they've come from pianos made of space jelly, and there's also some wibbling percussion like some kind of intergalactic candy dropping in puddles of, um, mountain dew? I'm not sure anymore. All I know is that this song moves out of the trappings of future funk to deliver a deeper sound, a more thoughtful and considered funky house perhaps, but ultimately a sound destined for the dancefloor – and if not, then at least it might turn the space which it fills INTO a dancefloor. YEAH. "

As far as we know this is a random SC upload. There might be more to come, like an "album" or an "EP", but it's probable that this is just an upload, something that a lot of people are still trying to come to terms with; don't worry, it's only the unknowable future at the door, you don't have to answer it right now.

☟ VentureX Social Media Presence ☟
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Saturday 13 September 2014


I saw a person on Twitter like last week say something like, "There are too many mixes therefore they are obsolete" – when questioned they cited "inflation" but I think they meant "saturation" maybe. Anyway, it's a ridiculous statement: replace "mixes" with any other thing of which there might too many or too much – food, videogames, paintings – and you can see how. I just thought that would be a nice thing to say cause, like, here's another mix. But I'd really hate to be the one to push you over the edge, so if you think you've heard one mix too many, then go take a cold shower, talk it through with a loved one.

This guest mix is from Fabrizio Faberismi, aka Jolly Mare: an Italian DJ, producer, and a participant in the Red Bull Music Academy 2013. I've also read that he has a PhD in Vibration Dynamics, something that led me to stare at gifs of wobbling catilevered L-beams on the wiki page for 'Vibration'; this might be why in an email he sent to me he described himself as "Something in between a gone-bad scientist and a musician." He also loves old music, and if this mix is anything to go by it's obscure old music in particular that is his penchant.

I got good taste in music

Self-confessedly inspired by a "groove, any kind of" when it comes to his own music, it also seems to lead his choices for this wondrous guest mix, itself a lil' under half-an-hour of groovesome entities. Mostly taken from the 1980s, and most you've probably never heard OF let alone actually heard, it runs from the sultry 'Marinero' by Spanish singer Lucía who also provided the Spanish entry, 'Él', for the 1982 Eurovision Song Contest, held in the UK at Harrogate (really weird choice), to the synth-disco of 'Histoire D'un Soir' by Bibi Flash, aka Brigitte Gasté, a French singer active in the '80s. The song really really sounds like Blondie's 'Rapture' – mainly in the rap-singing, the bassline (almost note-for-note), etc.

"There is some freakness in every one of them," says Jolly Mare of the tracks in the mix – and it's true: from the first vital, note-hopping bassline of 'Use My Body' by the unknown Mavis John, through the stretched out, night-anticipating 'Sunset' (L33 and Sven Atterton) and the effortlessly cool remix by Luke Million of The Swiss's summery 'In The City', to the Italo disco of Big Ben Tribe's 'Tarzan Loves The Summer Nights' and the indefatigable soulfunk of 'Better By The Minute' by unlocatable group Glass Pyramid, it's an amalgamation of genres and styles that basically utilise "freakness" as their foundations, namely funk, disco (regular & Italo), soul, boogie, R&B.

What does it demonstrate? "That I got good taste in music," replies Jolly Mare. I mean, well, yeah, these are good songs. And for those of you who are looking for some obscure tracks to boogie the fuck on down to, chill to, do your taxes to, stir fry some noodles to, fix that thing in your car to, clean your living quarters to, whatever to, then don't worry cause this crate-digging mix has done it for you.

• T R A C K L I S T •
  1. Mavis John - Use My Body (1980)
  2. L33 & Sven Atterton - Sunset (2013)
  3. Lucía - Marinero (1986)
  4. The Swiss - In The City (Luke Million Remix) (2014)
  5. Desi - I Want To Be With You (1984)
  6. Gladys Knight & The Pips - Save the Overtime (For Me) (1983)
  7. Big Ben Tribe - Tarzan Loves The Summer Nights (1984)
  8. Bibi Flash - Histoire D'un Soir (1983)
  9. The McCrarys - Love On A Summer Night (1982)
  10. Glass Pyramid - Better By The Minute (1984)

☟ Jolly Mare Social Media Presence ☟

Friday 12 September 2014


Get your brain massages right here! Come on folks, step on up step on up – you sir, with the brain, ain't yer brain tired of doing stuff? Ain't it harrrrd deciphering this world we live in sometimes? Well this is like a new lil miracle massage for grey matter called 'TOKYO AUDIO' and it's by AIR Japan. It's actually music it's not a real massage.

But it feels like one. All the sounds in this track are so gently fluid that it's real difficult not to drift away with em for the two minutes in which they exist, but at the same time they're all so futuristic, they're carefully considered noises that do not conjure a particular time and place that you have ever imagined. Instead you are seated in a plush chamber of chill, a deep chair softening as you recline in it, almost gripping your limbs with its nanotechnological cushions, a large screen (for um, hypnotising you? or something) change colours with each gargantuan wave of synth chord, bright cerulean fades into electric mauve. Each one is like a breath, the track effusing organic and automatic aesthetics simultaneously.

With the slow arpeggio, the percussive clicks, the backwards-water-droplet sound, the soft plasma waves of far-off flute noises twisting into figures of eight and other variously arranged loops of ethereality, the endlessly phasing resonance of those lounge inflected chords: it all melds into a thing that's as much future-spa as it is console startup screen, as undeniably chilled as it is portalesque in its purpose, cyber-exotica for the now.

☟ AIR Japan Social Media Presence ☟