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Frett – Door Open/ Door Closed

August 29, 2014

Here’s a track that we admittedly missed out on when it came out last year. And while we generally like to post fresh releases, this one’s so good that we’re making that rare exception. Frett is an emerging UK electronic duo that’s actually got some great, more recent material than our featured track “Door Open/ Door Closed”, but this track in particular is really something special. And while they aren’t the only awesome UK duo to emerge in the past couple years (thinking of Shiloh, in particular), at the rate Frett is going, they’re on their way to becoming one of Britain’s next premier acts.

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Saint Pepsi – Fiona Coyne

August 18, 2014

If you tend to keep a close eye on up and coming names in the indie pop scene, then you might have already caught on to Saint Pepsi’s emergence over the last year or so. The man behind the sound, Ryan DeRobertis, has already gotten some solid acclaim from mainstream blogs like GvB and Pitchfork, and for good reason. He’s an intriguing act that offers an element to his sound that most artists tend to neglect nowadays — diversity. For instance, if you compare his 2013 debut World Tour LP to more recent works like today’s “Fiona Coyne”, then you know what we mean when we say this guy doesn’t subscribe to just one sound or genre. What began as a downtempo, chilled-out “vaporwave” project has more recently transformed into the energetic, disco-pop sound like that featured in this infectiously-groovy new single. And while I have no idea if he plans to continue on this route for his next LP, it’s clear based on his previous works that whatever sonic endeavor he’s got planned next is something to get seriously excited for.

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iamamiwhoami – Tap Your Glass

August 13, 2014

I tend to gauge how good an artist’s upcoming LP will be based on the singles leading up to it. If I am going to judge Jonna Lee, aka iamamiwhoami’s third LP Blue by that method, then it’s pretty much set up to be the album of the year. All four of her singles released this year, including her latest “Tap Your Glass”, are absolutely epic in their own respective ways. And I think it’s fair to say this newest one is the most far-out and complex of the bunch. It’s also definitely one of those “click” tracks, where one second you’re attempting to figure out its flow and groove and the next you’re fully entrenched in its dreamy, synthpop ways. So be sure to mark your calendars for the week of November 10th when the highly anticipated Blue will make its first appearance to the world.

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Porter Robinson – Flicker

July 30, 2014

The world’s been raving over the release of Porter Robinson’s first three singles to his upcoming LP Worlds. And while by general standards I still think they are good tracks, all three ultimately fall short for me in their own respective ways. But there’s no denying that PR’s newest track, “Flicker”, is one of the best, most original jams of the summer. At first I had it confused with a disco-funk tune a group like Lemaitre might produce (coincidentally they’re featured on another song), but by about the 1:30 mark the track really begins to take its shape as a true Porter Robinson work of art. And on the heels of this amazing new one, I’m even more excited for what’s turning out to be one of the most hyped records of the year.

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default genders – the world ends with you

July 22, 2014

Default Genders is the alias for James Brooks, an artist you might have formerly known as Elite Gymnastics. After a brief stint as Dead Girlfriends, Brooks settled on the less controversial Default Genders and came out last week with his debut LP as such, titled magical pessimism. It took me a couple of listens before the beauty in tracks like “The World Ends With You” really came out, but when it does the payoff is well worth it. And with this new endeavor, Brooks seems to perfectly blend elements of shoegaze, dreampop, and his previous electro pop sound to form one of the boldest, most gripping records on the year. Check it out for yourself and see why we think this new emergence as default genders might be the best thing to happen to the gifted James Brooks.

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Tep No – The Drop Starts At 00:53

July 18, 2014

And the most deceivingly beautiful track of the year undoubtedly goes to Tep No’s new single “The Drop Starts At 00:53″. Hell, I almost skipped this track entirely assuming it was just another attempt at an EDM rager, but Tep No pulls a brilliantly unexpected move in this one. As that 00:53 mark approaches, you’ll see how they begin to build it up as if it’s just the start of one of another generic Calvin Harris tune — but it’s a trick, a fake-out if you will. Right at that prototypical “bass drop” moment, they instead shift to a lovely piano melody that ultimately incorporates one of the most perfectly placed vocal samples I’ve heard in a while. I’ve already been pretty enamored with Tep No’s first few singles up to this point, but with this amazing new track they have escalated themselves as one of my top acts of the year. And with a ceiling this high, it’s scary to think where this Toronto based talent can go from here.

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Andy Bull – Loved Like You

July 11, 2014

Ever since hearing his captivatingly catchy tune “Keep On Running” last year, I had been keeping an eye out for Andy Bull’s much anticipated sophomore record Sea Of Approval. After getting through it this morning, I’d first like point out what a complete work it is. Most records nowadays have at least a couple of those “filler” or downtime moments, but not this one. Each track seems to progressively flow and build off the last without ever experiencing that drop in quality we’ve come to expect from artists lately. Out of all the exceptional tracks, though, “Loved Like You” had me hooked as soon as that mesmerizing chorus kicked in. You can call it RnB, you can call it dramatic electro pop, but however you label it this is sure to go down as one of my favorite new jams (and records) of the year. So if you’ve yet to jump on the Andy Bull bangwagon, now’s the perfect time to check out this Aussie’s fantastic sophomore effort and see what all the hype’s about.

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Shiloh – Came Across

July 2, 2014

Shiloh is by far and away my favorite discovery of 2014 so far — and I figure that it goes without saying that their debut EP Venus Sway is my favorite record on the year as well. Very rarely do I see a band come out of the woodwork with a debut effort this impressive, but that’s exactly what little known UK duo Shiloh has pulled off. Entrenched somewhere between the electro pop and RnB genres, this record has something to offer for anyone that’s capable of acknowledging and appreciating music with substance. I had a hard time picking just one track as they each have their own unique appeal, but I decided on “Came Across” because it’s perhaps the most emotion-inducing of the batch. It’s inherently an RnB tune as vocalist JJ Draper makes a strong case for his vocal abilities, hitting those high notes with ease. And his producer counterpart Daktyl does a nice job at maintaining a sleek minimalistic approach instead of overrunning this lush anthem with those unnecessary sounds and effects we so often encounter these days. And with this incredible debut, Shiloh have cemented their place as one of the best new acts I’ve come across in a while — and one to keep a close eye on as more mainstream outlets take notice.

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Tusks – Burn

June 26, 2014

Tusks is out this week with one of the more heartfelt, emotional chamber pop records I’ve heard in a while. Her music is definitely electronic in nature, but in tracks like “Burn” you can hear how she utilizes elements from a range of different genres. With a nice piano melody as a foundation, Tusks, aka Emily Underhill, complements it well with a dreamy soundscape of background harmonies and her own lush vocals. And while she’s somewhat new to the scene with this debut EP, it’s easy to imagine Tusks becoming the next big dream pop sensation if she continues to put out records with this much quality and substance.

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Child Actor – Against The Night

June 17, 2014

Based on the quality of their work, I would have figured the dreamy electro duo Child Actor would’ve been an international sensation by now alongside other similar acts like Purity Ring and Young Wonder. To me it’s not really a matter of if it’s going to happen, but when for the young and ever-so gifted Max Heath and Natalie Plaza. They’ve got a follow up to my second favorite LP of 2012, Victory, that’s obviously one of my most anticipated on the year. We got our first glimpse at what’s in store with the release of the new single “Against The Night”. Not that I was expecting anything less, but this most recent offering does nothing but amp up my excitement for a record I, quite frankly, am expecting a hell of lot from. And If it’s anything as good as this euphoric, synth pop gem then their sophomore LP Never Die is set up to be one of the best on the year.

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