Today is special because my best friend just had a baby. He is cute. You know how some newborns look like super gross aliens? He is not one of those. Yay. V, I hope this entertains you while you’re biding your time in the hospital.
Oh, also, I changed the website! Lemme know what you think.
OK, on to the music.
1. Parker + Barrow — Low Rider: Okay I know I put this in songs to chill to, but it’s SO GOOD. I mean come on. It might be one of the best remixes I’ve heard in terms of completely transforming the original song (without disrupting the groove), turning it from an OK song to a fantastic song. I want to dance to this, who’s up for a dance party? San Franciscans unite!
2. Ejeca — Kelly’s ’95: I’m digging this track a lot. Ejeca can be fairly hit or miss for me, and I’m not a big fan of the other stuff on this release. But this song is great. Straightforward house music, not much going on, but the syncopated percussion and synths create a great atmosphere. I’d love to dance to this song, it’s one of those songs where the beat is so defined that it’s just not possible to dance badly to it. Is dancing badly even a thing? I think not. I think it has to do more with how much fun you’re having. By the way, I saw Carl Craig on Saturday and it was so great we danced for 3 hours straight until they kicked us all out. The best kind of night.
3. Rhye — 3 Days (Junior Boys remix): Junior Boys are backkkkkkk. Be happy. This is a lovely remix of a lovely group/duo, Rhye. If you haven’t heard of Rhye you should remedy that as soon as you’re done enjoying this song and this playlist. It’s really gorgeous music. Half of it is the artist Milosh who I used to listen to so long ago that thinking about it makes me feel old and I’m not old. He used to make the most serene downtempo stuff. Anyway, this is a superb track, and remix.
4. Solomon Gray — Miradors (Lane 8 remix): Lane 8 is another guy I’ve loved this year, and his sound has evolved from slightly cheesy to just damn good. This song really takes me somewhere. Where? I do not know. But I like it. One of my signature “songs you can listen to first thing in the morning and also get fuckin’ down to it at the club.” Which is the best kind of song. It’s the kind of song a DJ would play at last call when he starts to wind down the vibe, so all the people drunk and high and whatever understand that it’s almost time to go home.
5. Moar & Sarsha Simone — Gonna Do Me (20syl remix): 20syl is one of my favorite artists of the year year. Both his original productions (which I’ve shared before) and his remixes are great. You can hear the R&B influence in all his stuff—it’s a bit more slight here, but his signature sound is definitely present.
6. Shenoda — Labour: This is one of those songs that I swear I’ve heard before, but it’s not even officially out yet afaik. But that happens a lot in the electronic world. Sometimes people will take forever to officially release a track, but they give it to your friends, or post it somewhere, and it passes along and people play it in clubs and you love it and then like 5 years later you’re able to get an actual version of it (this used to happen with the amazing Joy Orbison allllll the time, he’s probably the worst offender). Anyway, great club track. Disclosure: not a banger.
7. Esteban Adame — ‘Rise & Shine’ (Underground Resistance Remix): Ah, yet another artist who I’ve never heard of before. Thank you, Mixmag! This song is dope. And simple: there’s the bass, snare, and just a few layers of synths that fit inside of each other. It’s always nice when an artist can do so much with so little. All of the little pieces come together to make a really full sound. And the bass is very well done, helping to round it all out. That probably doesn’t come through on computer speakers, so like always, it’s best to listen to on headphones or a soundsystem. I’m rocking out in my headphones right now. Desk dancing woo.
8. Nocturnal Sunshine — Hotel: Ah, the ever lovely Maya Jane Coles. She’s been putting out a ton of stuff under this pseudonym, mostly dubstep. Real dubstep. As much as I’ve wanted to love her stuff, I haven’t loved most of it. Don’t get me wrong: it’s good, and the production can be great. But I’m so happy she came out with a song that I love. The amount of women producers in electronic music is frankly pathetic. It probably has one of the worst gender ratios of any industry. So it’s always awesome when there are women you can support. And this particular woman kicks ass. This track is moody and dark in all the right ways, and the vocals are unobtrusive, yet add the perfect something to the track.
9. HXNS — Lightheaded: This guy is pretty great. He’s been putting out a ton of stuff this year. I love when that happens. This song is a bit funky, beat focused—there are a ton of guys in the Bay Area doing this type of stuff—but they all sound wildly different. Maybe this is the beginning of a movement? We’ll have to wait to find out. Anyway, great tune. Solid A.
10. Nicolas Jaar — Fight (Cocolino remix): Whoa, what a remix. I was very hesitant before I heard this. I’m pretty sure Fight is the best song of 2015, why the hell does it need a remix? Well as per usual I was wrong. This remix does all the right things. It’s faithful to the original song, and just makes it more dancey. It speeds it up, adds a stronger beat, and whoa, does the “drop” (it’s not a drop) sound fantastic (it’s around 1:35). Woooo. He makes a great sound by melding the bass and synth, and after a bit starts adding in more percussion and dropping it out—exactly like the original song. Maybe that’s why this remix is so good. It completely respects the composition of the original song, which was the best part of it. Good work Cocolino, I approve.
Go dance and be happy.