A&V – “Who are you”: Yeah, who?

Written by Atroxity

It’s Friday! Time for some uptempo groove to kickstart the weekend. And this time we do it the techno way:

I did mention “groovy”? This track rolls on it. Dark, relentless, insisting, repeating yet constantly evolving. Come taste the underground. Ah man, I love the drive on display here.

The individual (duo?) behind the track calls his/her/themselves A&V, and I find exactly zero about them anywhere on the interwebz, including their profile on Spotify. Nothing. Not a single word. Makes me wonder,
– Who are you, A&V?

And with 3 monthly listeners and 2 followers on Spotify they set a new record on this blog on degree of “undiscoveredness” that’s really hard to beat. Checks all the right boxes for this blog.

Have a great weekend – see you again next week for more undiscovered electronica goodness! As for me, I really want to seek out a small, hot, real underground club this weekend. I blame it on this track.

All while the radar keeps scanning…

Sullik – “Fire”: Gritty beauty

Written by Atroxity

Put your helmet on. It’s time to lower ourselves into the dark and dirty mines of the electronica underground.

“Minimalism” is a wave that never reached the breakbeat shores. And thank the gods for that. Still as big, profligate and monstrous as ever. Here’s a fine example. It’s building a massive tower of dirt as it growls up from the ground. A filthy, ugly breaks monster to churn your mining gear into:

The looped samples are all cogs in a giant mechanical structure, lumping over you like a steampunk machine from the deep.

Yeah, I dig stuff like that, and this track serves well to illustrate why. I’ve always been a big fan of breaks ever since the genre took shape as rather exotic b-side remixes on late 80s 12″ singles (at least, that’s the starting point of my love affair with these kind of beats), and really finding its form during the 90s.

And with six followers on Spotify, well you can’t get more undiscovered than that, can you? So if you’re a breakbeat aficionado, here’s a unique track for your collection. Your audience is practically guaranteed to not have heard it before. Cool!

William French – “Light”: An illuminating moment

Written by Atroxity

Four Tets fantastic remix of “Opal” springs to mind when listening to the lead in the Norwegian producer William French‘s latest creation, “Light”. Do I also hear a little bit of Röyksopp?

Not to imply this is a copycat, not at all. But there’s elements sprinkled all across this track that makes one go “hmmm – this reminds me of…”.

But as often is with music, it’s more about how you do it more than what you do. Case in point: Lest we remember the music genius Prince were often called “the Prince of thieves”.

And this track here is an elegant piece of down-tempo, dreamy electronica. Gorgeous stuff. The melody is catchy, the mix is flawless. The arrangement is layered enough to offer new discoveries for many rounds. It’s all in the details.
See, that’s where many less experienced producers fail: You’ve heard it all after the first playthrough. This track, on the other hand, can easily be played on repeat – and that in itself is a stamp of quality.

So, Willy: Shine your light on us! (Pffft… Sorry. Bad pun.)

Add this little beauty to your relevant playlist, because Light deserves to lighten your days!

… Duh. Sorry, I just had to… I’ll close the door on my way out.

Yokii – “Mind: Angst”: The angst we want to keep

Written by Atroxity

A trembling piano. Soaring voices. Dissonant noises. Is that an air siren I sense in the distance? Oh hello there, angst.

It’s about time I cover an ambient track on this blog. After all, it’s one of my absolute favourite genres. And this track here stands as an excellent example for why. Cinematic, dramatic, yet toned down and slowly moving.

And the angst! Oh dear me. It is here to be felt, smelled and feared. The monotone piano chords adds a melodic element often forgotten in ambient works like this. For me, that is the cherry on top, and makes it straight into my ambient playlist.

If I were to criticise it for something, it is that it is too short. It would benefit from being longer, at least by 2-3 minutes. It’s too quick a visit.

But that’s really just a compliment in disguise. This is an angst that we want to keep.

Tatum Gale – “Up2u”: Elegance in simplicity.

Written by Atroxity

A buddy and I were discussing music here the other day when I said, “I wonder if I ever will accept a vocal-based track on the blog…”.

Thing is, generally speaking I can’t stand vocals. Not because I hate the human voice – I really don’t – but because there’s so much god damn stupid we choose to use our voice to express*. As soon as a vocalist takes centre stage in an arrangement, I tend to lose interest.

*-The ringing irony here is of course that I regularly do use vocals in my own music, and those lyrics are more often than not just just cheeky nonsense.

But enough about me. Point is, what happened just a couple of days after the above mentioned conversation? Oh but of course: I discover the first vocal based track to include in this blog.

And, it’s not just a track with a vocalist. Oh no. The vocals essentially carries the entire track on its shoulders:

I know, right? You do understand why I say “principles, begone“!

The vocals so clean, rhythmic, unaffected. A perfect deliverance of the melancholic lyrics. A voice of pure human soul in balance with the stripped down electronica soundtrack. The words are as clever as the arrangement, well mixed, well produced, and that surprising intermezzo mid-track… What a find.

A pure class act.

Some might argue, “but is this underground enough for this blog”?
Well, don’t stop with this track. The rest of his EP, with the generic title “EP 1”, is a great showcase for this creative mind. An exciting blend of ambient recordings, instrumentals and vocals. Cue up the wonderful “Do Not Disturb” and hear what I mean.

As of right now he only counts a handful of followers on the various streaming platforms, making this a truly undiscovered artist. And thus, becomes a perfect find for this blog.

A great start of the new week!

Mafia B – Momentum: Elevates the weekend

Written by Atroxity

It’s friday! Time to break out of the blissful mental state we’ve worked up with the picks this week, and enter weekend mode.

Mafia B (Bryan Fein) is a Manhattan born DJ and producer that should be a new acquaintance for most of us. But we don’t need to hear him live to understand that he’s an experienced DJ: This track, “Momentum” is all the evidence we need.

Dark and stomping. That’s how we like’em, right? This bea(s)t hits you where it counts and begs to be injected into a huge PA and exposed to some serious clubbing activity. 

Oh, sure. To let melodic segments take sudden drops into a bass heavy beat are very familiar moves for an experienced clubber. But one can not deny it’s brutally effective. And this track never breaks out into a cheesy ad nauseam, it never does anything stupid. Firmly it navigates the Tech House borderlands with one single goal: To move the dance floor. A motivation we always will salute at this blog. Especially at the start of a weekend.

If I were to put my finger on something, I’d up the BPM a notch. But that’s what the pitch control is for, isn’t it? 😉

I wish you a great weekend, come back again in the next week for more of the noteworthy electronica moments!

Kidsø – “Scandia”: Debut extraordinaire.

Written by Atroxity

When I say Germany – what comes to your mind? Bierstube, ordnung und sauberkeit, industrial techno, the Berlin trilogy and mad weekends at Berghain?
Well, I’m here to tell you there’s more to’em Germans:

The German duo Kidsø have just recently released their debut EP, and in doing so puts far too many other debut releases, especially in this age of self-publishing, to humiliating shame. They serve a plate so delicious, so intercontinental and elegant I can only sit down, put their EP on repeat and smile while writing. 
This is a German duo you just simply need to be introduced to. It’s a cliche but so be it: You will thank me later.

Their music can be compared with those classy french house acts we all fell in love with, maybe a nib of Faithless for good measure. Ambient scenarios that ignites your imagination sneaks out here and there before a gorgeous blend of house beats, exquisite percussion and harmonic arrangements culminates in a melodic electronica De l’excellence.

A sense of loneliness is a recurring association in their tender arrangements, well supported by the fragile yet confident and strong voice of their female vocalist (whose name I fail to find). She is a perfect match to the atmosphere of the tracks. The above track, Scandia, is my pick but I could just as well pick any of the other tracks from the EP, titled “Apart“.

Kidsø. If there is any – ANY – fairness in the world of music, then this duo will be touring for a solid crowd within the next two years.

And you quite possibly heard it here first.

Nozzlin – “Salvador’s Tigers”: A retrochill trip.

Written by Atroxity

Oh hello there, retrowave. How many sweet shapes you take.

Is it a coincidence that this track instantly reminded me of Duran Durans “Tiger Tiger” and indeed also has a tiger in its title? Perhaps. Either way, it sure triggers good memories of days gone by and lazy summer evenings at chill places with good friends.

So sit back, kick off your sandals and submerge into the harmonic, calm atmosphere. Rounded off by a swell gitar solo that’s just a tad too soaked in reverb. As it should be.

Sweet drinks allowed. Trippy substances optional.

PS:Are you aware of our Spotify playlist? All our picks will be added there. Oh such a wonderful playlist it will be!

Ucros – “Really Different”: Not really, but good!

Written by Atroxity

Once again a progressive house track is on my plate. And while I promise to spread out a bit more than what is done so far in regards to genres, here’s a track that’s such a find for this blog that I had to post about it right away: It’s a really solid production – from an artist that barely has a following at all on Spotify… Yet. Perfect!

It’s deep, it’s rolling, and it’s just so, so true to the genre.

A devils advocate would argue that this track do not qualify to the title at all, cause it brings exactly zero different or new to the table whatsoever.
But I’ll ignore the devil for now. My “progressive house DJ genes” are practically screaming to build a set with this track as one of the building blocks in the selection. If you are met by stuff like this when you enter a club, you just know you’re in for a treat that night.

Yeah. It works.

Bertelli – “Sharan”: Stay true!

Written by Atroxity

My first review on this blog is, by the very nature of being first, something special.

And I have chosen a track that gave me a solid rush down memory lane and thus a chance to look back to what lead to the creation of this blog:

This is a new track (released just a couple of weeks ago) that takes me right back to the clubbing scene around the turn of the century. Back then the club scene were dominated by three genres: Trance, Hard House and Progressive House. Those three covered the essence of clubbing: Trance pushed the epic themes, hard house fed the kids on speed frenetic hard dance, and Progressive House provided a groove for the clubs that kept us going for hours and hours. Around that time I’d been the editor-in-chief for the main clubbing site in Oslo for a few years and I had just started DJing. Both being the reasons why I am now, more than a decade later, motivated to create this blog. To pull the gems, the good stuff, out in the public.

And Sharan is a track that deserves our attention. It embarks on one single mission, and that is to  establish a groove and steadily build on that. And it does it so well:

The kick is prominent, the vocal processing is just perfect, the bass line is rock solid, the production are using all those little trickles that we love to be fed while on the dance floor. It’s predictable enough to make us look like we know what the hell we’re doing, and progressive enough to turn up the heat, bar by bar, with the calm and confidence of a true progressive house track. It may not bring a lot of new to the table, but it does what it does exceptionally well. It’s true.

Kids, take notice: This is progressive house. Not the “pop music in house disguise” that Stockholm House Mafia had the nerve to label “progressive house” and with good help from Deadmau5 and the likes practically ruined the genre in doing so.

Thank you for keeping it real, Bertelli.