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zolajesus

Zola Jesus introduces new album with ‘Dangerous Days’

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Zola Jesus’ next album, Taiga, is not due out until October but she’s just dropped the first single, Dangerous Days. Jesus has always been known for being a dark songstress but it seems she’s embraced a more melodic, pop side on Dangerous Days. Taking cues from her work with French producer M83, the new single maintains the brooding synths from Conatus and adds a throbbing beat for a hands-in-the-air chorus, the likes of which we haven’t seen done in such an explicit way before. If Taiga follows the same soundscape as the single, it will likely catapult her to a much wider audience, one that she’s been deserved of for a long time.

Taiga is out 7 October while Dangerous Days is available to download for free now.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/zolajesus/zola-jesus-dangerous-days-official-audio[/soundcloud]

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Ellie Goulding debuts new FKA Twigs track, ‘Two Weeks’

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Ellie Goulding, of all people, has debuted the first track off FKA Twigs LP1, Two Weeks. Goulding plays a valiant radio host as she drops the track and then has a little chat with the oddball singer and producer. It’s perhaps Twigs’ most accessible song to date whilst still incorporating the sparseness of her earlier tracks. This time around she’s called upon cascading beats and a much richer synth to transform the song into a moody number. Following this, there should be no doubt that LP1 will be one of the finest debuts of the year.

The track comes in around 30:00 mins.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/yocxi/ellies-bbc-radio-1-takeover[/soundcloud]

UPDATE: Watch the video below-

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The Kite String Tangle releases ‘Aracadia’ and announces tour

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Brisbane producer, Dan Harley (aka. The Kite String Tangle), scored big in the Hottest 100 this year with his track Given The Chance earning a top 20 place. No doubt he’s hoping to emulate that success with his latest track, Arcadia. It’s off his debut EP, Vessel which is due out 8 August and comes with the new that he will head out on a National Tour. Arcadia sees the producer channel his inner singer-songwriter, combining an expansive soundscape with some vocal harmonies reminiscent of James Blake. It’s an established and polished effort that makes him sound far more worn than a debut EP would commonly suggest.

[soundcloud] https://soundcloud.com/thekitestringtangle/arcadia[/soundcloud]

His tour dates are below:

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10 Alternatives to Glastonbury Festival

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When Australians head over to Europe for Summer, they’re expecting crystal clear water, sunshine and plenty of heat. Yet the mecca of European festivals, Glastonbury, provides almost the opposite- mud and almost a guaranteed chance of rain. If you missed out on tickets to Glastonbury or are looking for something more prone to stable weather conditions read below. Also read below if you are stuck in Australia and want ten minutes to day-dream that you’re on a yacht somewhere in Croatia. Ah, how the other half live.

Here are the best ten, Metallica-free, European festivals in 2014:

MELT!

Located in an industrial area of Germany, Grafenhainichen (yeah, us either), electronica festival MELT! could just be the most unique of the bunch. If you’re looking for the mammoth headliners, this isn’t the one for you but if your kinda thang is a tightly curated, deeply interesting festival, then MELT! is definitely up your alley. You’ll be dancing in between giant cranes shooting flames and under disco balls suspended from trusses. What’s more, the mainstage runs from 3pm to 7am. Yep, not one for the weak-hearted. But, you can relax throughout the day as there is water to swim in.

Dates: 18-20 July

Line-Up Highlights: Portishead, Robyn & Royksopp, Metronomy, Chromeo, Chet Faker, Darkside, Little Dragon

Cost: 359.90(3 Day Ticket)

Latitude

Suffolk, England

Latitude in England is a family-friendly festival that won’t break you. There’s colourful sheep, wide-open spaces and mystical woods with the line-up offering more than just music. Set in the English countryside, festival-goers can watch comedy, poetry and even opera, if that’s your thing. If it’s just music you’re after, there is more than enough to block out the arty stuff going on around. There are four stages and forest parties that run into the early hours of the morning. Just like a true Glastonbury experience there is also mud, and plenty of it.

Dates: 18-20 July

Line-up Highlights: Two Door Cinema Club, Damon Albarn, The Black Keys, Tame Impala, HAIM, Royksopp & Robyn, Lykke Li, Mogwai

Cost: £195.50 (3 Day Ticket + Camping)

Bestival

Robyn Hill Country Park, Isle of Wight

Bestival won Best Major Festival in 2012 and is continuing to churn out huge, eclectic line-ups. This year is themed Desert Island Disco so you’re likely in for a bit of a boogie, particularly if the addition of Chic is anything to go by. Just like Latitude, Bestival is not all about the music. There’s comedy and cabaret among other things to keep you entertained while you’re not sweating with Major Lazer. Nile Rodgers has challenged Bestival with the task of making the world’s largest disco ball so don those flares and boogie down like Disco Stu.

Dates: 4-7 September

Line-up Highlights: Outkast, Foals, Chic, Disclosure, Busta Rhymes, Basement Jaxx, Caribou, SBTRKT, Glass Animals

Cost: £205 (Weekend Ticket + Camping)

Way Out West

Gothenburg, Sweden

Ikea, meatballs, Robyn- the Swedes just do everything right, so it should be no surprise that Way Out West is one of the best festivals going. Way Out West has been going on since 2007, expanding into a three-day festival in 2012. It goes on in the city of Gothenburg, with a complimenting festival Stay Out West running alongside it. Stay Out West is for those night owls who want to party on with after-hours gigs at clubs in the city. If you don’t fancy the idea of trudging out to a farm for three days then choose this one. You’re in the heart of the city and amongst a bunch of ridiculously well-dressed Swedes, enjoying Summer’s (literally) endless sunlight.

Dates: 7-9 August

Line-up Highlights: Outkast, Royksopp & Robyn (of course), The National, Future, Janelle Monae, Blood Orange, Icona Pop, Jamie xx

Cost: 1895SEK (3 Day Ticket + Stay Out West)

Roskilde

Roskilde, Denmark

If you’re looking for that big, hearty festival experience with masses of people, this is the one for you. It’s one of the largest music festivals in Europe with more than 110,000 punters in attendance. If The Rolling Stones playing to a crowd of 60,000+ people doesn’t grab your fancy, then stay away. If nudity is not your thing, also stay away. The festival organisers a nude run around the festival ground on the Saturday of the event. At eight days long, Roskilde is a marathon not a sprint, so it’s best to pace yourself. The line-up is so massive this year that all full-week tickets have sold-out.

Dates: 29 June- 6 July

Line-up Highlights: The Rolling Stones, Arctic Monkeys, Drake, Major Lazer, Outkast, Stevie Wonder, Chance The Rapper, Kasabian, Chromeo

Cost: 970DKK (Only one-day tickets are available)

Pukkelpop

Hasselt, Belgium

Belgium’s second largest music festival, Pukkelpop was struck by disaster in 2011 after five people were killed by a massive storm that caused a stage collapse. It also made in headlines in 2010 after the Ou Est Le Swimming Pool lead-singer committed suicide at the festival. Not convinced? Understandable but the festival has bounced back, hosting names like Eminem, the xx and Major Lazer and also pulling massive crowds. 65,000 sweaty campers grace the festival, so you’re in for a Glastonbury-like experience. According to all reports, the people are friendly and the atmosphere is pretty special. There’s plenty of Aussies on the bill amongst alt-rock and EDM royalty. The festival kicks off with a Boiler Party on the eve of the festival, just incase three days of drinking and no sleep isn’t enough.

Dates: 14-16 August

Line-up Highlights: Calvin Harris, Deadmau5, Outkast, Royksopp & Robyn, Cut Copy, Boy & Bear, Snoop Dogg, Disclosure, Actress

Cost: 175 (Weekend Ticket + Camping). Unfortunately it’s all Sold Out. Maybe next year…

Sziget Festival

Budapest, Hungary

The island of freedom, is what they call Sziget. Needless to say, that means anything goes. At eight days long, this is one that will take every inch of energy in your body. It’s held on an Island just out outside Budapest with 350,000 of your closest friends. Around 50% of visitors come from outside of Hungary, so you’re bound to get an eclectic crowd. And if we can stereotype Eastern Europe for a second, you’re also set to meet many colourful characters and see body parts you perhaps didn’t bargain for. When it all gets too much, the festival offers day trips into central Budapest during the day so you can recharge and see a few of the sights. Not that the line-up permits much time away.

Dates: 11-18 August

Line-up Highlights: Blink 182, Deadmau5, Lily Allen, The Bloody Beetroots, Calvin Harris, Outkast, Jagwar Ma

Cost: 249 (All Week Pass + Camping)

Unknown Festival

Rovinj, Croatia

Those who missed out on a ticket to its sister festival, Hideout, can take comfort in knowing that Unknown offers a similar experience. All that really needs to be said is island, boats, Croatia. Are you sold yet? If not, know that Unknown is hosted in the stunning old town of Rovinj with crystalline water and beautiful people. It’s five days of parties, which take place in the forest, on boats and on the island. The line-up is smaller than your big, central European festivals but it’s a tightly curated and eclectic mix of artists.

Dates: 8-12 September

Line-up Highlights: Disclosure, Chic, Moderat, CHVRCHES, Jamie xx, Clean Bandit, Wild Beasts, London Grammar 

Cost: 258.70 (Festival + Camping)

Benicassim Festival

Benicassim, Spain

If the Spanish are known for one thing, it’s partying until dawn. Benicassim is a four day festival on the East Coast of Spain that ensures plenty of sunshine and crystal-clear coastline. Think big stages, huge headliners and a bunch of wacky Mediterranean people. If you’re keen on the idea of Glastonbury sans the rain and mud, then Benicassim will seem like paradise.

Dates: 17-20 July

Line-up Highlights: Kasabian, Klaxons, The Libertines, Cat Power, Lily Allen, Alesso, M.I.A., Tame Impala

Cost: 159€ (4 Day Ticket)

Secret Garden Party

Abbots Ripton, England

This Festival is your ultimate alternative to Glastonbury if you want less crowds, a tightly curated line-up and a, well, mystical adventure. Similar to NSW’s Secret Garden Festival, SGP encourages dress-ups in the woods, promoting a fairytale-like atmosphere. You won’t see The Rolling Stones on a mainstage nor will you see Skrillex tear apart a dance dome but you’re likely to meet a bunch of people and ‘discover yourself’ in ways you never thought possible. Unfortunately, if this sounds up your alley you will have to buy a ticket of a reseller or aim for 2015 as it is now sold out.

Dates: 24-27 July

Line-up Highlights: Public Enemy, Little Dragon, Hercules & Love Affair, Jagwar Ma, Wolf Alice, Gorgon City, Say Lou Lou

Cost: £142.50 (Weekend + Camping ticket)

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First Impressions 23 June

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Truth be told, this week we were feeling a little confused after First Impressions. We heard Alt-J sample Miley, Riff Raff team with Childish Gambino and we gave tough love to everything apart from Tough Love. It may raise more questions than answers but such is the appeal of a first impression: the mystery.

Jessie Ware- Tough Love

Sam: I was wondering what Jessie was going to do following Devotion, sound-wise and this is a perfect answer. The upper-echelons of Ware’s vocals are crystalline and Benny Blanco’s production is sleek and sophisticated. That strobing synth off the back of the second chorus is a more than welcome punch through to the song’s third quarter. Stunning. 4.5 Sam’s Pick

Bianca: I had this strange feeling of knowing this song at very first listen. The soft sweeps and subtle backbeats are homely and comforting and Jessie’s stirring vocal-layered crescendo at 2:48 makes me just melt. 4.5 Bianca’s Pick

Lizzie: “You have me crying out, crying out for more.” Um yes, her words exactly. You know what is real tough love, the fact that her album is not here yet. This song is elegant, slick and effortlessly bouncy. Tick, tick, tick! 4.5 Lizzie’s Pick

Hannah: This song has been on repeat since theinterns shared it early last week. It’s a perfectly restrained combination of poppy bouncy beat, synth and can’t-help-but-sing-a-long lyrics. Said before and will say it again, ain’t nothing tough about listening to this one. 4

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/jessieware/tough-love[/soundcloud]

Alt-J- Hunger of the Pines

Sam: Miley and Alt-J, these are a few of my favourite things…but for some strange reason Hunger of the Pines is not. There’s no huge change in sound from An Awesome Wave and it sounds odd for odd’s sake. The Miley sample is beyond clumsy. 2

Bianca: This song sounded like it was about to go somewhere and then Miley came in with her big wrecking ball and ruined any chance of that happening. The cutting of her sample at 3:37 seems very odd to me. Points for the strings & sax though, and the return of Alt-J onto the scene. 3

Lizzie: The strings, the sax, it sounds like an orchestra warming up for a concert. Instruments are a little all over the place, but I am at peace with that. I am so glad Alt-J is back in my life, and…what the heck, I’m gonna go ahead and say that I’m a-OK with the Miley sample. #sorrynotsorry 3.5

Hannah: Having Miley Cyrus sing “I’m a female rebel,” really? Good one Alt-j, you’re so meta. With that said, I am never opposed to a Miley appearance, I love the slow climb crescendo and I do love where this song goes from 3:07. Welcome back Alt-j. 3

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/alt-j/hunger-of-the-pine[/soundcloud]

Riff Raff- Lava Glaciers (Feat. Childish Gambino)

Sam: I can’t help but think this song would be more of a success with James Franco rapping. Riff Raff’s rapping goes down like a poor person at the Opera, while the hook is just, ugh…I kind of like it, it’s frustrating. Luckily Childish Gambino comes in and guides the song through the storm. It’s the first time I’ve felt relaxed with Troy Barnes at the helm. 3

Bianca: “It’s pointless like the use of Emojis.” Umm…how else would I let my friends know I feel like eating a dragon head from a plate while wearing my finest red ball gown? Despite that minor misdemeanor, and Raff’s overuse of similes, this song is surprisingly inoffensive. 2

Lizzie: Hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. No. Just no. I have no idea what I just heard. 1

Hannah:  2

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/riffraff/lavaglaciers[/soundcloud]

Duke Dumont- Won’t Look Back

Sam: It’s a bit more of the same for Duke Dumont. ‘90s rave keys, a deep house beat and a soulful female vocal sample. It’s enjoyable but very safe, a bit like a glass of water- it’s hard to dislike, but it ain’t gonna get you drunk is it? 2.5

Bianca: Won’t Look Back is like the poor man’s Ride on Time (see, Riff Raff? I can do similes too!). The raspy vocals, purposeful keys and ‘90s groove are all the right ingredients for a dancefloor anthem but unfortunately the ingredients used here are Home Brand. 2

Lizzie: I am massively underwhelmed by this track. Duke Dumont, why did you go back to your 90s safe place? You were nailing it with I Got U and Need U – I feel you have gone back 20 steps (…or 20 years). 2

Hannah: Well this all sounds very familiar doesn’t it? 2

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/dukedumont/wont-look-back[/soundcloud]

BROODS- Mother and Father

Sam: BROODS’ debut EP was just so solid, it was hard to imagine how they’d top it. But they have. Mother and Father is their most abrasive pop moment yet. It packs an emotional punch and is just so damn hard to dislike. 2Dayfm will pick it up, Triple J will pick it up, heck, it may even be the Royals of 2014. 4

Bianca: Ooo, well isn’t this lovely? The defiant drum beat and gushing lyrics are definitely bringing back the memories and emotions of leaving home. brb, going to call my Mum. 4  

Lizzie: Am I “wowed” by this track? No. Would I run and tell my friends about it? Probably not. But in saying that, Broods have delivered a sweet musical gem that blends very well into my uni study playlist. 3.5

Hannah: I am having a solid BROODS’ moment right now. Mother & Father bridges the gap perfectly between what was and what is to come. 4.2 Hannah’s Pick

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/broods/broods-mother-father[/soundcloud]

Chloe Howl- Disappointed

Sam: Howl was part of the BBC’s Sound of 2014 and unfortunately the title of this song is a good indication of her career since. Ironically, this song may be the one to turn her fate around. Her vocals in the verses are buttery and the melody has a straight-up, Katy Perry-esque likeability. Surely this will find her a home in the British charts, it’s as if Adele has had a firecracker stuck up her arse. 3

Bianca: Sam, Mother and Father has no place in between Sophie & Jules on 2Dayfm. Disappointed, however, does. Ugh. 0.5  

Sam: Bianca, sorry to be the bearer of bad news but Broods have been added to 2Dayfm’s playlist.

Bianca: I still stand by my statement.

Lizzie: I am not angry or annoyed, I am just disappointed. 0.5

Hannah: Did she just say “You think I’m stupid-o?” I’m not even going to check that lyric. I like my version better already. 0.5

Don’t forget to cast your First Impressions vote in our poll on the right! (Not available for mobile users) 

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The Shins return with single for Zach Braff’s film, ‘Wish I Was Here’

Fresh out of the shower with my bathroom rendition of Simple Song still ringing in my ears, it was my delight to discover that The Shins had a new release to add to my repertoire. Those who remember Garden State (I personally try to forget it) will recall The Shins’ involvement in the movie with the most notable being New Slang, a song Zach Braff‘s character describes as having the power to ‘change your life’.

Braff has called on his American indie-rock muses again to help soundtrack his new Kickstarter-financed movie Wish I Was Herestating,”It’s no secret I am a giant fan of The Shins. For this film, I asked James Mercer if he would consider writing something original, inspired by his first impression of seeing the film. Not only did he say yes, but what he came back with gives me goosebumps every time I hear it. He is a savant.”

So Now What is an unfair taste of what’s not to come, with no The Shins album currently in the works. Get prepared for goosebumps as you listen to James Mercer AKA The Savant’s lilting vocals below:

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Wish I Was Here is due for release in the US July 18. Its soundtrack also features works by 17-year-old Melbournian, Japanese Wallpaper, as well as Bon Iver, Paul Simon, Badly Drawn Boy and a special collaboration between Coldplay and Cat Power. Catch the trailer here:

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Saturday Night Listening: New tunes from Jamie xx and Rustie

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Saturday night just got interesting. Even if you’re by yourself, sitting in your room (with a cheeky glass or two), these two new tracks are bound to make you feel like your feet are planted on the floor of a sweaty club. The first is, All Under One Roof Raving, by Jamie xx. It was premiered on Annie Mac’s BBC radio show, where Jamie revealed the song was created to be “something I could play out that reminded me how good home is”. We may not share the same Northern hemisphere home as the beats master but the track is no less relatable. Steel drums and a hip-hop vocal sample are the perfect remedy for a Saturday night. We only wish that we were under one roof raving with Jamie himself.

The second is the first single off Scottish producer, Rustie‘s new album, Green Language. While Jamie keeps it controlled, Rustie blows the roof off with Raptor. Shotgun beats underline a trap-inspired track that typifies Rustie’s total anarchy style. This one is definitely not for a quiet night in, but if you’re not out already it’s bound to make you don an outfit and hit the clubs. Just wait for dat drop.

Both the tracks require a bit of detective work to find but they are well worth the hunt. They both premiered on Annie Mac’s radio show which can be found here. Jamie XX’s All Under One Roof Ravings plays at about the 60 min mark while Rustie’s, Raptor plays around 1hr 21mins.

Watch below Rustie’s album teaser:

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10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week

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Soundtrack the weekend with 10 of our favourite songs from the week.

Jessie Ware- Tough Love

Ooh Ms.Ware knows how to tug at the heart with her vocals. She needed to switch it up from Devotion and with the help Benny Blanco, she’s taken her voice into the clouds, sounding airy and whimsical.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/jessieware/tough-love[/soundcloud]

Billie Black- I Waited For You

This one is the gold gem find of the week. Black has he utmost grace in her delivery of this slinky, down-tempo number. It’s a self-assured debut that comes with a conceptually strong video. That chorus is a hidden treat that just grows with every listen.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/billie-black/billie-black-i-waited-for-you[/soundcloud]

Broods- Mother and Father

New Zealand duo, Broods, stirred crowds when they supported Ellie Goulding this month and they’re further proving on this one that they can please both a mainstream and commercial audience. Mother and Father is a delicious slice of emotional synth-pop.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/broods/broods-mother-father[/soundcloud]

M.O- Dance on my Own

Girl bands are back in a big way but don’t don your sporty spice Adidas, these guys have the swagger of TLC. Dance on my Own is a polished piece of pop with cascading vocal harmonies and sassed-up melody.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/momusicofficial/dance-on-my-own-mistajam-intro-teaser-version[/soundcloud]

Guerre- Tuk

Tuk is the second offering off Guerre’s forthcoming album, Ex Nihilo, and it’s a flittering, neo-tribal exploration that features his whispy vocals running effervescently alongside. According to Guerre, the song is the most pop on the album and it’s him “trying to channel all that Pharrell produced Justin Timberlake stuff”.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/yespleaserecords/guerre-tuk[/soundcloud]

D/R/U/G/S- Overcome (Feat. Fe)

Manchester producer, D/R/U/G/S channels the tropical vibe that has been doing the round of late on his latest single, Overcome. It’s from his upcoming self-titled record and features some glorious vocals by Leo Duncan. If Summer was coming, we’d be all over this one, but for now it will have to do as a distant reminder of the summer that was.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/drugsbeats/overcome-radio-edit?in=the-in-terns/sets/what-were-listening-to-1[/soundcloud]

Mike Will Made It- Buy The World (Feat. Future, Lil Wayne, Kendrick Lamar)

Miley’s producer is starting to make a name for himself as a soloist but he’s recruited hip-hop royalty on this one. Buy The World is classic Mike Will. It’s laid back, with a big, fat beat that keeps proceedings beefed-up. Future and Kendrick Lamar sound as good as ever while Lil Wayne continues to prove he’s on a sharp decline. Oh well, two out of three ain’t bad.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/interscope/mike-will-made-it-buy-the-world-feat-future-lil-wayne-kendrick-lamar[/soundcloud]

Ryan Hemsworth- Every Square Inch

Created in collaboration with Japanese producer,  Qrion, ‘Every Square Inch’ is like sour skittles bouncing their way down a techno-coloured rainbow. Straight A Hemsworth with its vulnerable highs, bursting over defiantly get-low lows, ‘Every Square Inch,’ has us excited for the release of his October LP, Guilt Trips.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/ryanhemsworth/every-square-inchwith-qrion[/soundcloud]

Lil Silva- Mabel

Lil Silva has done a brilliant job as the producer for BANKS, but he’s also doing some stunning stuff on his own. Mabel is the first track off his EP of the same name which is due to be released 4 August. It’s a deep-base, layered beauty that is likely to aim right for the gut.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/lilsilva/lil-silva-mabel[/soundcloud]

Aaron- Strong

It’s not everyday you get a polished debut pop song dropped at your feet, but it happened this week. London singer-songwriter, Aaron takes a swipe for the pop crown with this mammoth, synthed-up chorus. Look out Sheezus.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/aaronofficialuk/strong?in=the-in-terns/sets/what-were-listening-to-1[/soundcloud]

Listen to the full Soundcloud playlist below:

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/the-in-terns/sets/10-songs-you-need-to-hear-this[/soundcloud]

FNLI_HTDW2

Friday Lock-in: How To Dress Well – What Is This Heart?

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We’ve locked ourselves in with a box of tissues for an emotional Friday Lock-in. This week’s record up for review is the third album by Tom Krell (aka. How To Dress Well) titled What Is This Heart? Listen along with us (by streaming here) as we discuss Celine Dion, tears and the many pleasures of a marching band.

2 Years On (Shame Dream)

Bianca: It takes me back to Christmas time as a child. It sounds like a Christmas carol.

Lizzie: I found myself tearing up a little bit.

Sam: Actually?

Lizzie: Yeah, a little bit. I got emotional.

Sam: First song and we need the tissues already. I’m really torn, I love his voice but what an odd start to an album.

Lizzie: Yeah, it’s like at a One Direction concert where they sing their songs and then bring out the acoustic set.

Hannah: I love that his voice holds you there. I do question putting that as the first song though.

What You Wanted

Sam: I fricken love it.

Hannah: I adore it.

Lizzie: It’s JT, but just with so much more talent. At the start I thought it was going to go a bit slow but he just built it up and built it up and brought you into the song effortlessly.

Sam: Now the first song makes sense to me. It’s so layered.

Bianca: Ohhhh, once the synths come in I was so gone. That was sooooo good.

Hannah: I love how the vocals bounce between Destiny’s Child and TLC. They bounce, they cascade down. And then it has this dirty grimes bass with a twinkle above it.

Bianca: It’s a bit poetic isn’t it?

Face Again

Sam: I feel like I can sing along early on. It’s got a pop quality but it’s also weird.

Lizzie: This one’s a bit darker than the other ones. The back sounds get broody but he’s still true to himself.

Bianca: it’s like BANKS‘ Drowning, where it has this demonic voice that’s behind the other voice.

Hannah: There’s this desperation that finishes off the end of his verses. The end of each sentence is throat, gut wrenching desperation.

Sam: It teeters on this edge where I feel like it’s going to fall off at any second.

Lizzie: It would be cool to see in the recording studio how into it he is.

Sam: He says things that I imagine I would say and they would sound really lame. I have to say I’m very happy to be third song in and still interested. Last week (Love Frequency Lock-in) I was already gone.

Hannah: Last week was dire. This one makes everyone drop about 5 inches.

Bianca: In a good way, of course.

See You Fall

Bianca: Speaking of getting low, that voice just drops.

Sam: When he says “fall” and there’s that deep voice under it. MWAH!

Lizzie: The strings is another thing you just don’t expect. He could ride a pretty good wave with his voice, it’s incredible. But he brings in new components to every song.

Hannah: Each one of his songs demonstrates an intricate knowledge of a lot of music genres. He’s really happy going between all of them. This is springy and poppy and happy but then when it starts talking about strange faces, there’s RnB/Hip-Hop.

Sam: When that throbbing bass comes in I’m just like “aww shit”. Love it. Lizzie this wouldn’t be something you’d generally listen to would it?

Lizzie: No. But it creates little experiences in your head that you don’t even think about. I wouldn’t usually listen to this but it makes me wanna have a happy time. Cry a bit more.

Sam: Disclaimer- Lizzie’s had a hard week.

Repeat Pleasure

Hannah: Still love it, still love it, still love it

Bianca: It’s nice to go to an album and hear a song you already know. It brings you back down to earth, you’re familiar with it and you can just…

Sam: …groove

Bianca: We finish each other’s…

Sam: …sandwiches.  

Lizzie: It’s a good wake up in the morning and get-your-head-together song.

Hannah: I love that he cites Celine Dion. I love that he goes there.

Sam: It’s all these potentially tacky references, and he makes them fresh.

Hannah: Love that he goes there.

Words I Don’t Remember

Lizzie: This is not my favourite

Sam: Me neither

Lizzie: I don’t like that synth sound…It’s a great song and a 3am, sexy song but…

Sam: It’s not as rising as the other songs.

Lizzie: Yeah, it’s familiar electronic sounds but just nothing new.

Bianca: It makes the album a little tiring for me. 6 songs in and I’m feeling weary.

Bianca: Oh wait, it kinda got good at the end.

Pour Cyril

Sam: That one is literally almost making me tear up.

Lizzie: Welcome to the club, honey.

Bianca: My orchestra days are all coming back to me

Sam: Ahhhh the strings. And then his voice introduces this perfect melody.

Lizzie: It deserves its own movie. A movie needs to be made around this song. I feel like I wanna go chase my lover that I don’t have…before he boards the plane.

Bianca: Can we really underline the fact Lizzie’s had a bad week.

Precious Love

Sam: I love it. It’s so everything I love in a song. His is my music in an MP3. I love my white-boy RnB.

Lizzie: It’s not your typical RnB though. You kind of have to think. It’s a new modern, but slightly old and familiar.

Sam: There’s an 80s jingle behind it.

Bianca: I really like the kick-drum, the claps. The clap is infectious. 😉

Sam: This is the most mainstream in a way. It’s good to have the beat back to. Everything on the album is ever so slightly different.

Lizzie: It’s like a good fashion collection everything’s a little different but it all comes together.

Sam: Like ya classic LBD. Everybody needs a LBD.

Bianca: ‘How to dress well…’

Childhood Faith In Love (Everything Must Change)

Sam: This one’s all about the throb.

Lizzie: Yeah, I think I can go and do good things with my life now. I feel like it’s turned me.

Bianca: This album has just been a roller coaster of emotions.

Sam: I feel genuinely excited about this album.

Bianca: You know what? This isn’t my favourite of the album.

Sam: it’s not my favourite but I feel it’s necessary. I feel like every album needs ones that don’t pack a huge punch.

Lizzie: He loses his beautiful voice in this.

Sam: No, I like the reverb in it.

A Power

Sam: Again, I love that beat.

Lizzie: This whole album I could not listen to by myself. I find it too broody and emotive. It’s brilliant but this is an album I’d recommend. I want people to listen to it. But don’t get me alone with this album because I’ll break-down.

Sam: It’s interesting to watch how everybody reacts to it and it’s made it so much better for me.

Bianca: I’d have to be in the complete right mood for it.

Sam: It’s not a bus record.

Bianca: No. And it’s not a getting ready record either. Even though it is How To Dress Well. If I got dressed to this I would not dress well. Darkest clothes and think I really need to throw my whole wardrobe out.

Sam: The way this album builds. I’m dead…it’s the best reaction I’ve had to an album all year. I think it’s amazing.

Very Best Friend

Sam: This one doesn’t pack a punch for me.

Lizzie: in the last song we were in our comfort zone and we needed something to push us to the end. At the start, the Flume-y skip gave us something.

Sam: I love the vocal break-down though.

Bianca: Nup.

Lizzie: You realise the corniness of the lyrics.

Sam: There’s too much space.

Bianca: I prefer Foster The People‘s Best Friend.

House Inside (Future Is Older than the Past)

Bianca: Such a good climax.

Lizzie: He’s done what every artist should do on an album. It was cyclical. He closed it off well. Althouht here was a bit of a clusterfuck with instruments after the start. The ending is beautiful.

Bianca: The marching band brought it home.

Sam: I felt like we’d reached the top of the mountain and we were all holding hands and hugging. You guys had mascara dripping down your face. That slow song that didn’t make sense at the start suddenly makes total sense. What an album.

Lizzie: I’m going to give it 8.5

Bianca: Agree. 8.5

Sam: I’m going to give it 9.5. I think it’s the best album of the year so far.

Hannah: I’m with you, Samos. 9.5. Touchdown!

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Stream the album at whatisthisheart.com 

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Who is shaking up the EDM industry?

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This week, Electronic Dance Music’s most overtly opinionated, twitter-fighting bass genius Joel Zimmerman, a.k.a Deadmau5 dropped his latest studio double-album while(1<2).

Well, what does mean? While most may just yawn, close this tab or even throw their computer at the wall with the sheer thought of another release of a repetitive head-banging EDM collaboration, this album release, alongside many others in 2013/2014, have spurred a debate really worth raving about (…literally).

Anyone who knows the Mau5, knows he has a history of distaste for sloppy production, festivals, the banal of over-played EDM music and well, anything music related, thanks to the joys and reach of social media. However, in a recent interview with the UK’s The Standard, Zimmerman took one more dig at the music genre which has housed his music for so many years.

“Disco had a longer run than EDM has, to be honest about it, and that died in a f****** hurry. EDM is way more susceptible because that was in a time when they didn’t have mass social media and all that shit. It’s not gonna be me saying, ‘OK, EDM’s done’, and the whole thing falls apart, but I think it’ll eventually f*** itself so hard.”

While some are selling-out to Las Vegas adaptating (I’m looking at you Calvin Harris) in order to survive as the biggest, most well-paid DJ on the planet. Other artists who found their roots in the EDM scene have done a complete 180and rebelled against the pressures of money, fame and their record labels, to produce some of the most exciting tracks of the last year. I am not here to sit and ridicule EDM culture; I proudly fly the “Eat, Sleep, Rave, Repeat” flag. It is has just come to the surface that times are changing and, dare I say it, it is not all about the “drop” any more. Here are some of the big-name rebels who are shaking up the current EDM industry:

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Avicii

Why am I starting with Avicii? Why? He’s just so mainstream…

Remember that song “Wake Me Up”? That tiny song, which he produced with Aloe Blacc, reached number one in over 22 countries, and had over 375 million YouTube views. Yeah that’s the one. Well, things did not start out all peachy for this 24-year old Swedish rebel. If we take ourselves back to Miami’s Ultra Music Festival 2013, when he dropped this bluegrass banjo-infused, thigh-slapper set with live instrumentalists and singers, fans of this tried-and-tested banger machine were left shocked, outraged and confused with no drop to jump to.

Avicii later replied, “I really wanted to switch things up and do something fun and different, as I always strive for, and this album is about experimentation and about showing the endless possibilities of house and electronic music…My music is open to anyone who wants to listen to it and I will always stay true to my sound.”

Even Ash Pournouri, Avicii’s manager, knew the gamble would pay off:

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While, we may all argue that Wake Me Up, and other songs of his 2013 album release “True,” have now become dance floor staples, we have to remember this is the same guy that bought us Levels. He took a big risk on a global stage and at that moment, in terms of production and ingenuity, this was a large step forward for the young Swede. Since then we have seen him collaborate with country legend Mac Davis, bluegrass musician Dan Tyminksi, Incubus guitarists Mike Einziiger and Ben Kenney and folk rock singer-songwriter Audra Mae. In a music scene which can quickly become shrouded in artistic unoriginality, this courage to step up to the plate should be commended favourably.

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Deadmau5

No Dj in the world is more outspoken and passionate about the Electronic Music genre than the mouse-head-clad Deadmau5. However, when he took to the stage at Ultra Music Festival’s to play the Saturday closing set earlier this year, he provided one of his most controversial outcries to date.

With the antics starting on Twitter shortly before his set, the fans were somewhat ready for his trademark rebellion:

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While some have called his Levels shout-out a fair tribute to the hospitalized Avicii, who was set to play the marquee spot at Ultra, EDM young-gun Martin Garrix did not get off so lightly. Halfway through his set, Deadmau5 dropped Martin Garrix’s festival-anthem Animals, with a distinct mash up with Old MacDonald Had a Farm; gaining him the official dickhead troll of the year title.

Just like a duck into water, Deadmau5 dealt with the inevitable backlash to his public EDM tantrum in true Mau5 fashion – over Twitter. Among those who did not find it funny was superstar DJ Tiesto, a mentor to fellow Dutchman Garrix. While Tiesto did not directly condone Zimmerman’s action, he did make the point to call out Animals as an “epic track” and pinned Garrix as a “super talent.” Deadmau5 later replied with a sarcastic “Am I supposed to sneer while hitting the sync button? Or is that ironic?”.

We can just to add to his list of his other twitter disputes: Deadmau5 v.s The Internet, Madonna, Arcade Fire, Justin Bieber, Porter Robinson, Steve Angello…the list goes on.

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Porter Robinson

In a very enlightening Reddit AMA last Wednesday, 21-year old Porter Robinson opened up to his fans revealing that he “started to become really unhappy with the EDM-type stuff” and “basically, [he] wanted to stop writing music for DJs/clubs/etc and instead write more personal, songwriting-oriented stuff that focuses more on being beautiful and vast-sounding and nostalgic.”

“I don’t see myself ever producing EDM music-for-DJs again, no,” Robinson told one fan.

Right. Well, this was unexpected. Last time I remember hearing this bass-driven EDM whiz-kid, he was filling the room with Language, and 100% in the Bitch, and gracing the mainstage of Ultra. However, if we could learn anything from this young EDM rebel, it is that under no circumstances can we call his new hotly-anticipated album Worlds, set to be released on August 12, an EDM album.

“A lot of my angst about EDM came from my songwriting process. iIthink that EDM, in order to do its job in its intended setting (a DJ set), has requirements to make it ‘work’. the most effective electro tracks have a 30-second buildup, where the chord returns to the root note, with risers, maybe a rising vocal, a snare roll – there are moves you HAVE to do in an ‘EDM’ track to make it work.”

He later added, “It was the BEST FUCKING FEELING EVER to be writing music without those confines. writing music makes me so goddamn happy again.” Those “confines” being pressure on the function over real artistic expression.

In 2014, Porter has enticed us with a 10-hour release video, and three songs including Sad Machine, Sea of Voices and his latest release, Lionhearted, a clear departure from his usual bass-heavy big room sounds. It is obvious he has spent a long-time separating his new work from the rest of the EDM cluster pack, and with this evolution, sets a bright future for electronic music.

This Saturday sees Robinson take over the decks on BBC Radio 1 for a special Pete Tong Essential Mix. A rebellious mix which should not be missed.

UPDATE: Listen to the two-hour long mix here.

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Dillon Francis

This guy. Mr funny man himself Dillon Francis may not be the most overtly opinionated dance-infused producer, but he definitely does not take the pressures of the EDM world too seriously. Nurtured under the decks of producing mega-dude Diplo, and his Mad Decent label, Francis has flown the flag for a new sound called “Moombahton.” Do not fret, I can barely wrap my head around the terminology – apparently a fusion genre of house music and reggaeton. What you do need to know is that this signature don’t-give-a-fuck style (“I.D.G.A.F.O.S” is one of his prime tracks) and well-produced beats are what looks to be the immediate future of the EDM genre. Taking the piss out of anything and everything.

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Besides his flourishing DJ career, providing one of the most memorable sets at Coachella 2014, his social media presence has gone from stride to stride; or should I say, alter ego to alter ego. Dj Hanzel, one of Francis’ many alter egos, urges his crows to go “vun deeper” and provides endless Vines and Instagram Videos for his fans. His latest attempt to poke fun at the ridiculousness of the EDM festival scene, was personified in his new character “Treva” from Australia (yay, we are now globally recognised feral festival goers!). In reality, this rough jab is an attempt to break away from the confines of the EDM trap Moombaton sound which very often pigeon-holes his work. While Dillon Francis may be relatively new to the ‘fuck-you EDM, revolution, this attempt to add diversity to his DJ career makes him a rebel to the system in 2014.

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Yeo on Pharrell, Keith Urban and Koopa Troopa

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Melbourne producer/songwriter, Yeo, has been kicking around on the scene for a while. Since the release of his first single, Girl, off his forthcoming EP, Come Find Me, his audience has boomed. His second single, Kobe has continued that streak, amassing almost 50,000 plays on Soundcloud and delivering a video directed by MOOP JAW.

We spoke to Yeo midway through his Kobe single tour, a show that brings together his diverse, RnB styles with an all-encompassing visual experience.

How’d the first show go?

Ah it was insane. It was crazy. So unexpectedly awesome.

Has the liveshow changed since you started?

It has. New members is one of them. But we’ve condensed the show down to a two piece, added visuals and also just recently we’ve started piping the set up so there’s not big spaces between songs and making it a real show. Making it an engaging experience more so than just a bunch of dudes on stage playing music.

Are people responding well to new material?

Four or five of the songs in our set haven’t been put out yet. Majority of it is from older albums but there is a big chunk that is new and people don’t seem to notice. Or if I do mention accidentally on stage that we are playing a new song, they get excited. It’s pretty cool.

QQ_Yeo_1I suppose you’re at that enviable point in your career where people respond well to new songs rather than going for a bar break.

Nahh. That happens. I feel sorry for bands that have to put up with that.

When you were writing and producing the songs for Come Find Me did you feel like you were onto something with Kobe?

I didn’t. Kobe is the one that is the most poppy and catchiest but I don’t necessarily like it the best. I think Girl is really interesting and then the other two are really quite catchy. It’s hard to explain. I didn’t get the feeling at the time. I liked it but I didn’t think this is the single.

Do you find Come Find Me is quite eclectic or is there a common thread that runs through it?

For me personally there is always a common thread. To everyone else I think they listen to what I do and think every song sounds different. I can see that too. A lot of things are different from song to song but where they come from, say my heart or the feelings that I have, they are all from the same place.

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Have you had a common influence since you started recording?

The influences definitely change all the time for me. I think a lot of the feeling, it makes sense when you put them in chronological order. When it comes to something like grief it’s followed by shock, followed by anger, followed by you know repairing yourself and then eventually happiness. It all makes sense in terms of that kind of thing. Talking external influences, I listen to a lot of different kinds of music, I read a lot of different books and I watch a lot of different movies.

Do you think inspiration comes from finding new instruments and new sounds?

Yeah definitely, everything I do is to not have a plan. I lock myself in a shed and play around with all the different musical toys I have. A lot of the time songs just form themselves.

Do you pull inspiration from obscure things like Nintendo?

I used to play video games a lot when I was young. I don’t keep up with the gaming trends these days but I still enjoy video games in general. But yeah It does come from obscure things. Anything from video games to the way the light reflects of a river. Sorry to sound wanky but that’s one of the things. Or how could it is in Melbourne in Winter when you wake up sometimes. Whatever.

I read that you have another EP ready for release after Come Find Me, is that still happening and is it a different kind of sound?

It’s probably a very natural progression from Come Find Me. Come Find Me has a lot of space, and dimension to it. The next one is a tighter, groove-based thing, possibly with a bit more emotion. Because the space has been taken away, it’s a little bit more confronting.

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Do you have an album in the works?

I would love to do an album but I don’t think that I have the attention span nor does my audience. We’ll see. One day I would love to. A big concept one with massive story-lines and songs that run into eachother.

It sounds to me as if the visual output is just as important as the audible output for you. Is that true?

Recently it’s become that way. I think to standout from other musicians and acts you’ve really got to focus on the experience as a whole and realise that people need more than just their ears to be stimulated these days.

How’d the collaboration come up with MOOP JAW for the Kobe video?

Well my manager is actually really good friends with the director and the writer of the clip. He heard the song and he liked it so he said yes.

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Are you happy with the clip?

I’m so stoked, I’m really proud of the clip. It took a long time to come out because there were some details we had to work out. But when it came out everybody said to me it’s beautiful. And I was like, “yeah, I’m glad it came across that way”. That’s all we wanted to do. Make it a work that both Rhett and I were happy with.

How do you go about incorporating the visual into your live show?

We just have a projector and we turn the lights down so you can see the projector. That’s what a lot of bands do wrongly these days. They leave the lights up and you can barely see anything. It’s all about making the crowd feel less self-conscious and giving them something to focus on other than people.

Was there an artists that influenced you early on to be a musician?

Not particularly. There have been a few key artists in my life that have made me or inspired me. Mostly my peers, seeing what they do and how things can be done push me along. Pharrell was a big influence back when I was starting out. It was like, hey he’s just one guy with these ideas and he’s just putting them on record. It’s hard to nail down influences because there’s so many and they’re always changing.

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Do you feel it’s a good time to be a self-made electronic artist?

Ahh. What it does is if there’s a lot of competition around, you just get better at what you do. You work hard. Sometimes, it’s a little bit disheartening when you see these young kids who have produced one song in their bedroom shoot to superstardom whereas there’s guys like me have been kicking it for nine years. But it’s all about the follow-up. If they do a track after that that’s just as good, I’ll shut the hell up because that’s rad.

Do you feel like taking a while is a good thing?

I definitely feel that. My character is very densely built now that I’ve been gigging around for so long. And I don’t get phased by flashy offers or big city lights. I know what I’m good at, I know what I’m not good at and I know what I need to get better at.

Kobe Single Tour:

FRI 6 JUNE – NORTHCOTE SOCIAL CLUB, MELBOURNE

SAT 14 JUNE – THE CAUSEWAY, PERTH

SAT 14 JUNE – LOST SOCIETY BAR, PERTH (DJ SET)

SUN 15 JUNE – INDI BAR, SCARBOROUGH

FRI 20 JUNE – UPSTAIRS BERESFORD, SYDNEY

SAT 21 JUNE – THE ARMIDALE CLUB, ARMIDALE

FRI 27 JUNE – ALHAMBRA, BRISBANE

SAT 28 JUNE – SOL BAR, MAROOCHYDORE

FRI 4 JULY – CATS @ ROCKET BAR, ADELAIDE

SAT 5 JULY – TRANSIT BAR, CANBERRA

THU 17 JULY – SCU UNI BAR, LISMORE

FRI 18 JULY – BEACH HOTEL, BYRON BAY

 

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