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The Weekly Froth!

  • Published in Columns

The Weekly Froth! A weekly take on six tracks, most of which have recently popped up somewhere in the blogosphere. Bit of a mixed bag with a slight leaning towards house, disco, and remixes, but generally just anything that for some reason tickled the writer’s fancy.

Track of the week: ‘Calling Card’ by The Galleria

Morgan Geist knows how to mix danceability with some emotive vocals, and here he does so as The Galleria, which takes it’s cue more from '80s pop than the house or disco music that he has emulated as part of his other monikers. So here you’ve got some iconic synthesizer sounds, using the ticks, bleeps, and percussion hits well alongside the throwback sounds that one remembers from radios or discotheques past. Jessy Lanza is on vocal duties, putting in some emotion with her rhythmic delivery. At about four minutes in we get this bell solo (!), which then is followed by a more bass-synth line as he goes for an instrumental passage for the dancefloor, with Lanza doing some “oh-ho, yeah”s to get some sexy in there as well to end the track. I love a lot of Geist’s stuff (those Storm Queen singles are especially superb), and he knows how to mix dance with the vocal outings he gets from his leading men and women. This is more on the catchy and pop side, a nice supplement to his oeuvre I reckon.

‘Escape’ by Zimmer feat. Emilie Adams

Emilie Adams wastes no time entering the scene here, immediately putting her dreamy, far-off stamp on this undoubtedly catchy track by Zimmer (because, you know, that’s just what he does). So no wonder that you get this elegant beat and synth combo after just a few moments, which he halts at about the forty second mark to go just piano to help out his singer here for a moment. Just for that extra emotional touch. Soon the percussion elements come back in, with the guy obviously working his way back to, in this case, a new beat. And the occassional touch of horns, which is always a good addition (they’re horns, what do you want from me?). Again, he takes his foot off the pedal for a moment, but that beat is quick to come back, though this time it seems he combines the two different ones he’s already used to give us the full monty that he has been leading up to the whole track. It’s a track of his new, upcoming EP, one that will be an enjoyable listen no doubt.


‘The Formula’ by Eli Escobar

Eli Escobar seems to have recently put his whole album Up All Night on his soundcloud, so if you missed listening to it on release, here’s a way to preview it no strings attached. This track, ‘The Formula’, starts with some of those club sounds. Far away music, people talking, and other assorted sounds associated with a night out. The music, though, creeps to the front of the mix with a nice bit of piano house arriving first, with a soft percussion line still being a bit shy and taking a back seat at the start. The vocals then really come in again, repeating the line I’ve got something for you, which in the club can only mean one thing, really, can’t it? In the mean time the piano has been integrated into the more percussion based rhythm sounds, with a jazzy saxophone putting this in a smoking bar in NY before it takes you to town a short while later when the rhythm takes you out and wants to do some serious dancing with you. Doesn’t mean the saxophone can’t be there, cause by this point everyone wants to join the party in this catchy little number. Loads of atmosphere, super smooth, and loads of fun: if you’re working at home and you’re looking for something to stream to get your energy up a bit, his soundcloud is where it’s at.


‘Lucia’ by Ishinohana (John Talabot Sunset edit)

John Talabot is the master of atmosphere combined with deep beats, and here, from the get go, he shows you why. He starts with a nice, deep, bit African sounding percussion. Some extra hand percussion comes in, soon being combined with these lovely secondary sounds to really give you the feeling you’re watching the sun set over the plains and all that jazz. He adds a little bass sound in there too, and a lighter rhythmic percussion, though it is that guitar that really puts this one in the place where it needs to be. He is super in terms of building his tracks up, and here, too, the subtle transitions, the subtle changes in volume, the subtraction or addition of certain sounds; it’s all done with an expert ear. At 2:50, for instance, there’s little left in terms of rhythm sounds, but just over the three minute mark they come back in without overpowering the main instrument at all. Keeps you out there in sunglasses riding around the out-of-town roads, just because it feels like that’s what you gotta do listening to this one.


‘Fear the Night’ by Luke Million feat. Jesse Davidson

I’m more prone to fear mornings than nights, to be honest, but Luke Million certainly gets those italo synths blasting as if they’re doing a sci-fi soundtrack with the hero vs. baddies sequence coming up. Jesse Davidson puts in a rhythmic vocal turn, saying that You’ve got the right, to fear the night, a line followed by a nice, bordering-on-cheesy piano line from Million, with the synths and beat combo still hammering this one onto the dancefloor. At about the second minute mark Million comes with a new synth line, which is pretty catchy and awesome, as Davidson mentions that You’ve said that you’d never be unfaithful to me (Ha! We all know that was a lie!), so there’s a bit of an emotional thingy going on, which we dance away on the synths and cheesy-piano-chorus, turning it up a bit with a sort of male back-up choir near the end. As always, dancing the blues away on a catchy-little-tune like this one beats out dancing the blues away on a tearjerkingly-serious-affair, so don’t mind if I do it right here, right now.


‘You Got the Love’ by Candi Staton (Dr. Packer rework)

The bass gets this one rolling out of the gates, with some percussion and synths helping out after the initial few seconds. These sounds become more prominent as this one closes in on the coming of the vocals, which we all know at one point or another will arrive with a vengeance. First we get a few rounds of building up the instrumental structure of the track, with Dr. Packer adding sound for sound before dialling it all down a bit for some muted bass and vocals. Which he is wise enough to turn up quickly again, as he knows that, now we’ve heard it, we want it. It’s one of those tunes that everyone who has ever been on a dancefloor knows, with that big, all-out vocal turn by Candi Staton, exclaiming that Your love is real, and she does feel sometimes like putting her hands up in the air in praise of that. In the mean time the bass keeps rolling to provide that base for dancing, and at that point you just have to make sure you’re not in her way, because she is barreling through this ode to true love. Some subdued horns and a dash of piano can be heard as well, and this is just one of those feel good edits you can throw out there for just about every crowd. As, Lord knows, we all need a bit of that Staton real love every once in a while.



The Weekly Froth - October #1

  • Published in Columns

The Weekly Froth! A weekly take on six tracks, most of which have recently popped up somewhere in the blogosphere. Bit of a mixed bag with a slight leaning towards house, disco, and remixes, but generally just anything that for some reason tickled the writer’s fancy.

Track of the week: ‘Cut Chop Roll Skate’ by Eddie C

Love the drums at the start, and the percussion rack is send off the bench pretty quickly with more of all that coming in, giving you multiple tempos and rhythms. That’s basically true for the entire song by the way, even when other instruments have already started coming in. It’s not the drums themselves that change their pace, but it is the adding and substracting of other percussion elements that does that trick, which is quite clever. At about the two minute mark you get a nifty little guitar in, and about thirty seconds later there’s a pretty major change-up when first the bass comes in, and then the talky vocals, along with all the laser sounds you kind of remember from days of yore. Love the change-up at about 3:20, when all the instruments have to make way for that deep bass and that funky little guitar they throw in there. I just love stuff like this, it’s got an old school swagger to it that I really enjoy, especially when, ever so briefly, those horns come in at about 4:30. It’s got plenty of variety, loads of old school sounds, and they just give you that cool cat vibe that is just so nice.

 ‘If You Say So’ by Escort

Are you ready for the disco? Escort has been releasing some lovely disco tracks for some years now, and this one sounds even more throwback than a lot of the others. Not in the least because of it’s slow-to-mid paced tempo and the higher pitched vocals that anchor it. Naturally, there’s a little bass line that’s just catchy enough that you want to wiggle that body a bit, and the drum gives it a bit of an extra backbone in that regard. The lyrics, in good disco fashion, will ask you to Give it up, and they do so in a slightly dreamy, alluring fashion. At 3:20 most of the auxiliary sounds are stripped, leaving the drums to dictate the pace, which gives the illusion of the song speeding up. It’s a lovely, wistful disco tune, which fits the genre as a glove.


‘Happiness’ by Chris Malinchak feat. MNEK

I always like myself some Chris Malinchak, as this guy always manages to put the right amount of vibe into a track. Here, it’s not the thudding beat that does it, but it are the synths and, especially, those Soulful vocals. Yessir, capital S. If that voice doesn’t add some feel to this than I don’t know what does. Malinchak is never one to overcrowd his tunes, and here again he manages to let the vocals shine. He keeps the beat as the backbone, the synths for some extra flavor, and he adds some percussion that, in terms of tone, fit the rest of the track just right. At about the two minute mark he dials it down for a moment, leaving in some of that piano, before coming back to that beat again. It’s a short ride, barely clearing the three minute mark, but when it clears that mark with just the synth and those vocals you’ll only be thinking about how sweet it is, really.


‘Scale Those Heights’ by New York Endless

This one isn’t afraid to build it up, taking a while to get the full volume out there. But from about thirty seconds in you already start getting where this is going with that synth rhythm they put out there, and when the beat comes in as the backbone to this track it’s off and running. They go for that hypnotic vibe, but keeping a little bit of a raw edge to it. You’ve got the beat and that fast, simmering synth, but you also have that atmospheric synth that kind of floats over the track in its deep, whale-exhaling sound. At about the three minute mark you get a light, springy synth which changes that whole feel up though, and there’s some woodwork percussion for some extra rhythm. That deeper synth does come back in combination with the new synth sound, showing they can co-exist. At this point, every twenty seconds or so, they throw in some changes to get some slight variation going, and the second half of the track sure brings out the summer again. At the end, when the synths are kind of stripped away to make it easier to mix, you even get a good idea of how much percussion there was actually in there.


‘Pleasure Principle’ by THUMP (Eli Escobar remix)

Eli Escobar knows how to get stuff dancefloor ready, and from the get go you already get the feeling this track is just waiting to explode at any time, which happens thirty seconds in. Love the double vocals here, which get even more momentum because of that speedy beat that he has put underneath there. There’s also this lovely rhythm synth in there, and at 1:20 you get a delicious piano line which just completes the total house vibe of this track. In the mean time Escobar is still working the double vocals without any of those two actually doing any singing, but as a musical layer they do fit in really well with the beat and the piano and the like. At 2:35 he strips down some essentials up to the point where, around 2:50, even the beat is gone. But despite all that, you know it’s all coming back, and the first step he takes in that direction is bringing the synth back in. After that you finally get some actual vocals doing some actual singing, which gets accompanied by a singular kick beat. After a minute or so the whole works return, though slightly altered, now having a slightly more botched feel than the high paced beginning. That piano though, which gets re-introduced as well, that makes sure everything keeps being linked together. For those party people, this one.


‘Works Like Magic’ by YACHT

YACHT is really firing on all cylinders again, and here is yet another track by the duo. Although, apparently, this one is courtesy of not only Yona and Claire, but of the extended family as well. Surely, from the get go, they make use of the whole array of instruments they’ve got available, so in that sense it does sure sound like it. That what they do at about 0:30, to me that is so lovely, quirkily YACHT, and that is what keeps you wanting to come back to them as they always manage to throw that ball at you with that curve of theirs. It is a really short, but also really energetic and fast paced affair, never letting up and really throwing it all in there. So if you like your songs clean and streamlined, this is not the YACHT tune that will put an end to that craving. However, if you like it slightly chaotic, with loads of little fun elements that come together like all those one hundred ideas you get when you let some kids try and organize the school dance, then this will get you flailing your arms about while jumping or dancing around, no doubt.


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