Bass-music maestro Bassnectar has recorded a new mix for the UKs BBC Radio1 and uploaded it for our listening pleasure. As usual the North American dubstep and bass-infused hip hop king not only hits the nail on the head but knocks a hole right through the wall, leaving the listener in a dancing/headbanging stupor.
Do yourself a favour and download this. Now.
For those who don’t know Magnetic Man are one of the hottest electronic acts in the UK right now and the world’s first dubstep supergroup consisting of dubstep originators and pioneers Skream, Benga and Artwork. The trio have recently been slaying UK and European audiences with their mindblowing live show and even recording at Maida Vale studios with live strings.
This album is definitely aimed at more of a mainstream dubstep audience than a lot of past tracks released by these three producers, full of catchy vocals but not surpassing on the big wobbly bass we have all come to know and love when it comes to UK dubstep.
The album showcases a variety of sounds from orchestral strings in the opening track, Flying into Tokyo, and moves onto a variety of heavy dubstep and the more poppy sounds of I Need Air and Perfect Stranger. The album finishes on an absolutely epic note with Getting Nowhere (featuring John Legend).
This is a great album and just may be the catalyst of dubstep crossing over to mainstream audiences.
My picks of the album: I Need Air, The Bug (Benga’s bassy vocoder vocals here are HUGE), Perfect Stranger, Karma Crazy and Getting Nowhere.
Guitars and emotion
Just finished listening to Motion Picture by Bombazine Black. And loved it. From the very moment I held the CD cover – I just had a feeling I was holding onto something beautiful.
I’m a little speechless. This album is incredible.
It’s emotive, delicate and yet extremely powerful. If you’re a Sigur Ros fan – then you’ll love it tracks like The Bel Esprit – overall the minimal guitar sounds are contemporary and beautiful.
There’s a lot of heart in this album and I can’t say enough about it. Make sure you get a copy.
Those in Australia can buy the digipak featuring artwork by our very own Jayne Tuttle at the following stores:
Basement Discs – basementdiscs.com.au
Greville Records – myspace.com/greville_records
Missing Link – missinglink.net.au
Polyester (City & Fitzroy) – polyesterrecords.com
Pure Pop – purepop.com.au
Readings (Carlton, St Kilda & Port Melbourne) – readings.com.au/music
Title – (Brunswick, Fitzroy and Northcote) – titlespace.com
Title – titlespace.com
Funhouse Records – 160 Magill Rd. Norwood SA 5067
Tommy Gun Records – myspace.com/tommygunrecordshobart
78 Records – 78records.com.au
Mail-order copies are also available from the Bombazine Black blog -www.bombazineblack.blogspot.com.
“Shack is a force to be reckoned with”
I first saw Elite Force aka Shack a few years ago when he played the Harbourlife festival on Sydney Harbour. What a set that was, and every set of his I’ve heard since has been huge. One of the pioneers of the tech-funk sound, a wonderful marriage of tech-house, electro and breaks, Shack is a force to be reckoned with. Known for his electrifying DJ sets where he will often scream at the audience, revving them up just before the beat drops back in.
This mix is to help promote one of the large number of sets Elite Force is playing at this year’s Burning Man festival in Nevada, USA (I think I’ve seen him post somewhere from four to six different set times and stages on his Twitter over the last week or two). Beginning with a monologue about weed and acid I knew I was in for another banger from this monster of a DJ. Moving from the intro straight into a jacking techy sound, Shack wastes no time getting the dance floor moving.
The mix continues with some bass heavy tunes, almost dipping into the wobbly house sound currently being supported in the UK by likes of producer/DJs Jack Beats while still keeping that wonderful rolling groove Elite Force has always managed to keep in his sets.
Continuing with Shack’s flawless mixing the set begins to wind into a ravey feel but still with huge breakdowns, basslines, and breakbeats, which surely would have gone down a treat at his recent set at Canada’s Shambhala Music Festival, touted by Elite Force himself as “the perfect rave” and also known as Canada’s answer to Burning Man, which I was lucky enough to attend in 2009.
Always one to keep the dance floor on their toes, Shack takes a turn around the twenty minute mark with a very heavy electro feel full of more breakdowns to give the dance floor a short rest between the stomping beats being thrown down shortly before changing again into a harder tech-infused sound at the half an hour mark to get the dance floor pumping even more.
With the basslines getting bigger and bigger Shack proves the whole way through this set he knows how to build up a set and take the audience on a musical journey, crossing genres, different feels and seamlessly moving from one to the next, constantly keeping things interesting.
Dropping his revamp of the breaks classic, “Blackout” by JDS, Shack shows off his acid-breaks roots before he moves into his tech-funk sound of today, before quickly mixing into the housier sounds of Felix da Housecat’s “Oops”, giving the dance floor a short rest before throwing down more heavy tech-funk beats and basslines.
While personally I wasn’t much of a fan of Shack’s revamp of Nero’s remix of “Sincere”, I was quite happy to hear his version of the Smashing Pumpkins hit “1979,” which was featured on The Crystal Method’s “Community Service 2” mix CD. This tune lightened the mood of this otherwise quite heavy set before dropping into the fiery depths of hell with the even heavier final tracks of the mix.
Dubstep. The popular sound in underground electronic music today. Huge basslines and big broken beats. This sound really fits in well with Shack’s sets and is a perfect way to make a set full of big dirty basslines even bigger and dirtier. While I prefer the original, the Elite Force revamp of dubstep God, Excision’s, “Subsonic” was the perfect track to link the breaks sounds of “1979” into Shack’s collaboration with another of dubstep’s heavyweights, Bar 9, before finishing off this monster of a mix with another excerpt from the monologue found in the intro.
Delicate, powerful and hopeful.
This is honestly one of the most beautiful albums I’ve picked up in a long time. And if anyone has anything else similar then please send it. And as one review points out – it’s almost an album of too many good tracks! But I’m looking forward to soaking up each and individual track.
It’s a collection of epic folk songs. Grab a copy from iTunes.
“The Army is Australia’s longest running professional musical organisation, employing hundreds ofmusicians across the country.” Director of Army Music, Lieutenant Colonel (LTCOL) Ian Mclean.
Jump onto the MySpace of these crew and you hear a really fat cover version of Don’t Hold Back. The rest was non-stop listening for me. Probably the last thing we think about when talking about our Defence forces, but this cannot be over looked.
They’re a soul-funk, big band, jazz outfit that operates like any other band and just so happensto be made up of Army Musicians. They play gigs, they have street posters and they even run ads looking fornew band members in street press, on blogs and at universities. And like a lot of bands around the world,they have a MySpace page.
On their MySpace page you can hear some of their music, watch a few clips, get event dates, as well as findout more about what being a musician in the Army Reserve is all about.
For information about the role of Musician in the Army Reserve, visit myspace.com/thereservists or call 1319 01.
Finally grabbing a copy of Save Me From Myself by ex-Korn member Brian Welch – better known as Head – was a massive step. Korn have been my favourite band since I was about 14, and Head deciding to leave the band once he found God and cited moral reasons for leaving, was almost like a personal punch in the throat – he was my favourite, massive reason for me playing guitar and influenced my own band‘s style to some degree.
While there’s much I wasn’t as impressed with (my bias to Korn is unavoidable really) it’s the openness of the album that made it for me. The video to Flush is incredible though – very Korn, but really confronting, there’s also a little controversy around it too.
Personal things aside. I’ve picked it up, and put it on, and will give it a fair go.
The production is strange: I guess I was expecting massive guitars, dripping in bass. What it appears to be is a much more Dope – I can’t even really tell what guitars they are, too much (what I assume) post-production work, kind of sucked any rawness. (Note: I’m telling myself now to stop expecting a Korn album)
Hearing Head’s absolute musical direction is actually surprising: it’s pretty classic nu-metal meets industrial metal. The guitar work isn’t incredibly technical – another surprise to me. Some really great melodies through there. Head on vocals is also interesting: it’s pretty Jon Davis (Korn’s lead singer), and you can hear heaps of other influences from the nu-metal and industrial era there: but definitely some classic Jon Davis from the earlier days.
The synth work is okay – although because I’ve been spoiled listening to heaps of tech and progressive house (dance) music, they sound ‘cheap’ – and in fact much like what I’ve been producing on my MacBook’s GarageBand, another let down.
Overall, it’s enjoyable, even if it sounds a little juvenile in production and lyrical content. But I definitely something I’d put on and play comfortably at full volume, just as a metal fan. Religion isn’t spat at us, the themes are there, but like so many are delivered well tact.
What I really do enjoy about this album is it’s just raw – it’s Brian just smashing out all the songs that have obviously been in his head for some time. Good work, mate. Will pick up your next one for sure.
“Flush” controversy – from Wikipedia
The content of the music video has reportedly caused select retailers to pull Save Me from Myself from their shelves. This prompted Welch to provide his explanation for what transpires in the video:
The video for ‘Flush’ is about crystal meth addiction and the crazy things anyone addicted to meth will do while they’re high or to get their fix. Everything the models were doing in the video is what I was wrapped up in while I was addicted to meth. The video is a very realistic look at the addiction and where it will lead you if you get hooked. I understand the images of the models may be too much for some people, but honestly, I was just trying to be real with what happened in my life and show where I was, as well as where I am at now. I was totally imprisoned by meth … I would do anything to get my meth … I believe I would be dead right now if I continued using meth, but instead, I chose to surrender my life to Christ and die to myself so He could share His resurrection with me … Significantly, the images also go along with what the kids (not actors) at the beginning of the video were honestly saying about their addictions.
Interview with Stone Sour
Because ultimately that is what we all want out of music – some fun. Sure, I like a little dourness every now and then but not when the aim is to cut loose. With this in mind, I can not begin to explain how wide of the mark the faux-soundtrack Almost Alice actually is.
Perhaps it is best to question the album’s actual existence before sinking the slipper into its content.
Music that is inspired by a film (in this case Tim Burton’s take on Alice In Wonderland) has never really sat well with me. Usually these sorts of soundtracks are vessels for off-cuts from a record company’s roster where ninety-five percent of the songs never appear in the film (save for the end credits) and almost never have any lyrical link to the movie in question.
Whilst the songs that make up Almost Alice certainly reference Lewis Carroll’s classic tale (at times too bluntly) only one of them can actually be heard in the film – during the end credits of course.
That honour belongs to the shrill-gorged tones of Avril Lavigne with ‘Alice’. With that as an indicator, the rest of Almost Alice is your stock standard American commercial pap (All Time Low, The All-American Rejects, Metro Station) cheekily throwing in Wonderland-esque lines into their oh so earnest lyrics: “If you cut me I suppose I would bleed the colors of the evening stars.”
If I never hear from Owl City again it will be too soon.
The only surprise amongst this lot is the inclusion of heavyweights like Franz Ferdinand and Wolfmother whose appearance seem as out of place as Obama at a Klan rally. And of course nothing says fun times like the inclusion of Mr Happy himself Robert Smith.
Speaking of the British, a group who actually know about fun is New Young Pony Club. While admittedly nothing on their new album The Optimist is as overtly playful as early single ‘Ice Cream’, NYPC deliver a more mature sound without sacrificing their sense of having a good time. ‘Chaos’ begs to be played on the dance floors on a Saturday night whilst ‘Dolls’ evokes the spirit of 90s outfit Luscious Jackson.
Though The Optimist plateaus about three quarters of the way in (a sequencing problem more than anything), there is much to like from this band. You get the sense that their defining album is not too far off.
If you’re a Ludacris fan or if you’re into Hip hop without the over-the-top audiotuning you need to buy the Ludacris CD now. Don’t waste your time thinking, get it. This album pumps out the best of Ludacris’ work, and is great driving music. The guest appearances are crash-hot with Ne-yo, Lil’ Kim, Trey Songz, Trina, Flo Rida and more popping up in just about every track. Track 2 – How Low – is a fun, catchy tune showing off the lighter side of LLudacris, and track three drops into hardcore Ludacris beats, featuring excellent vocals from Nicki Minaj. I Know You Got a Man features Flo Rida and is another stand-out tune. Can’t Live With You features Monica as a guest vocalist and you’re almost guaranteed to have that song stuck in your head. Bottom line: If you’re a Ludacris fan you need this CD.
I love The Bamboos – awesome Aussie funk group – and heard about their collaboration with Lyrics Born from California on the radio the other night. Just had a chance to listen to it. Good track, soulful, works well … although I thought it was a little repetitive; could have been trimmed by at least 30 seconds or built up towards the end, though it’s saved by the two-stage breakdown at 1:50 and 2:45. Anyway, I still like it!
I’m a big fan of Muse. I have Showbiz, Origin of Symmetry, Hullabaloo Soundtrack, Absolution, Black Holes and Revelations, their live 2004 Absolution Tour DVD and now their latest 2009 release The Resistance.
It took me a while to come around to liking their previous 2006 album Black Holes and Revelations. My initial impression with BH&R was that the band had plateaued and were now just a bland, commercial pop-rock group focussed on selling quantity rather than sticking to their we-don’t-care-if-you-like-us experimental progressive, space-rock. After listening to BH&R about a dozen times I finally realised that they hadn’t sold out. They were starting to poke at something new, a new sound.
That new sound has three years later matured and become Muse’s latest album The Resistance.
The eerie opening to the first track builds tension like few albums I’ve heard before, before your dropped into what can only be described as a Spartan pit fight. This is metal. Real metal. And there are no prisoners taken here.
It’s definitely progressive, but it’s not math metal. Thankfully. It’s raw and quite emotive. The timing is supburb.
Ballarat never sounded so brutal.
Yep, this is a local band from Victoria, Australia. The drums and bass stick together and move as a powerful force. The guitars are dripping wet on top and drive a lot of treble and high mid. The vocals are done in a full growl – not everyone’s cup of tea – and the force is again brutal. You can hear a unique blend of a wide range of influences coming to taint this voice: I get flavours of Bolt Thrower, Cradle of Filth and a little Pantera in the higher screams.
The guitars continue to fly on top of drums and bass that can only be described as a rumbling boom. It’s a really nice balance of blood lust and atomic doom: it’s fast yes, and raw, but the bass and drums ground the sound to give it depth. Depth, especially in faster and harder metal, is vital to develop any kind of story and emotion with the listener.
Soul of A Machine is track 5 of the 7 track album – is a great little spoken word piece. A really unique mark on the album – and something rarely done.
Birth of a Digital God would definitly have to be one of my favourite tracks followed by Ruptured. Over all, the final track End of The Aeon - would be my favourite. Like the opening track, we’re treated to the vocalists clean styled vocals. AND FUCK ARE THEY GOOD. The vocalist, Luke Greenwood, really showcasing his full range, tonal flexibility and raw emotion throughout this last piece.
The album over is very dynamic and is great cranked at some solid volumes. To Dylan, Will, Aaron, Jase and Luke: keep up the amazing work. Hope to see you guys in Sydney sometime.
For everyone else, get your copy of Lambs to the Slaughter by Kaamora and prepare to be taken apart with a pick axe, and love every minute of it.
I just kept the CD running and discovered the secret track. Hah. This is fucking brilliant.
As I have stated once before: I am a material guy in a digital world. Buying a full album online still does not wash with me and no amount of exclusive bonus tracks or digital booklets can sway my opinion. I do however purchase a lot of new singles to the point that I need to set up some sort of tab arrangement with iTunes like Norm had with Sam Malone.
Free albums on the other hand I’ll happily download anytime. Of course by ‘free albums’ I don’t mean using a P2P service to grab the latest Metallica album for nix. This year especially there have been some solid free releases by artists and I thought I would share with you my four favourites as well as the best free music related podcast in the world.
The Charlatans – You Cross My Path
Back in March this year, UK stalwarts The Charlatans partnered up with radio station Xfm to drop their 10th album online for nothing. Sounding more like New Order as the years go by, fourth single ‘Mis-Takes’ is one of my favourite songs of 2008. No longer available through Xfm but an album worth seeking out regardless (it was released on CD in May).
Nine Inch Nails – The Slip
With the simple message from Trent Reznor: “thank you for your continued and loyal support over the years – this one’s on me”, The Slip was made available with no prior announcement on May 5th. All of a sudden, NIN has become prolific and we are all better for it.
Girl Talk – Feed The Animals
I remember back in 2006 a guy coming into the record store that I worked in and asking for Girl Talk. After politely showing him ‘The Best of Dave Edmunds’ album he shook his head and explained the ‘Night Ripper’ album and its concept. 2008s Feed The Animals is another brilliant collection of samples blending into and on top of one another. The album’s only fault is that it doesn’t contain ‘Girls Talk’ by Dave Edmunds. Perhaps next time.
Mick Boogie & Terry Urban – Viva La Hova
Whilst Coldplay purists weep on message boards around the interweb, the rest of us can’t get enough of this brilliant mash up album with Jay-Z and the second biggest band in the world. Inspired by the remix of ‘Lost!’, some great underground producers have put together some fantastic tunes, my favourites being ‘Never Changing’ and ‘Public Speeding’. Both acts have given it the thumbs up as well, that’s praise you can’t buy.
Sound Opionions – Weekly Podcast
A great weekly radio program originating from Chicago, Sound Opinions is the self proclaimed “world’s only Rock N Roll talk show”. While that boast can’t be confirmed, its hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot are well respected music critics with a wealth of knowledge. You won’t always agree with them but you will enjoy their insights and fantastic guests. Worth an hour of your time each week.
Fuck me, this man is brilliant. Scott Matthews hails from Wolverhampton in England and burst onto the UK charts back in 2006 with his debut album, Passing Stranger. You might have heard the mournful single, Elusive, on Triple J and thought you were listening to some previously undiscovered Jeff Buckley. But Elusive is just the tip of the iceberg and barely begins to showcase Matthews’ talent.
Passing Stranger is a collection of beautifully crafted urban folk-rock gems. From crunchy blues riffs to sliding guitars to delicately picked melodies, Matthews has perfected his acoustic sound. Woven into his songs is an entire medley of unexpected instruments to keep you on your toes, including tablas and a French accordian – each track is a magical experiment. Read the full story