Music for the Masses

Music for the Masses

by DJ Ron Slomowicz
07.17.2015

A roundup of great electro, indie, trap, deep, chill and vocal tracks.


M.I.A. - Swords - [INTERSCOPE]

Bringing social commentary to dance music, you can always count on M.I.A to ruffle some feathers.   In the same way that Beyoncé sampled Diplo/Afrojack for the female empowerment anthem “Run the World,” M.I.A. teams with edgy Dutch producers Spanker and Party Squad for a more transgressive feminist statement.   With slams against drug-glorifying hip-hop and mindless EDM, “Swords” challenges women to be strong and self-reliant in response to attacks while building the strength to take control of heir destiny.  With the moombahton beat keeping the rhythm, the sonic clash of sitars, swordplay, and Sanskrit chanting echo the intensity of the lyrics.    As a second taste of her forthcoming “Matahdatha” mixtape, M.I.A. proves that she is still on the cutting edge of electronic music.



Camelphat - Constellation - [SPINNIN DEEP]


As the brilliant Massive Attack-inspired “Paradigm” with AME continues to make waves around the world, we can all look forward to a glowing “Constellation.”  The upcoming release from Camelphat keeps the chilled summery vibe going by using airy sweeps that mimic waves and woodwind instrumentation that carry the melody line. The ninety second preview posted above will give you a taste of what’s to come next week.  No, we can’t wait either.



3Lau ft Emma Hewiitt - Alive Again - [ARMADA]


You’ve got to love Justin (3lau).  Not only is he a nice guy who raises a lot of money for charity with his dynamic high energy DJ sets, but his music is varied and creative.  Following up his banger with Luciana (“We Came to Bang”) and Corona cover with Nom de Strip and Estelle (“The Night”), he unleashes the gorgeously pretty “Alive Again.”  Working with trance goddess Emma Hewitt, the radio-ready progressive pop track features Emma Hewitt singing about a spiritual connection with the one you love.  The beauty of her voice matches the track perfectly.  For all the new couples discovering a new love on the dancefloor, give it a buy and send “Alive Again” to your new soulmate.



Koishii & Hush ft Kate Peters - Freefall - [GRAMMATON]


At a time when everyone is making festival bangers and retro '90s house, the idea of bringing back '90s trance-pop is quite fresh.  Venerable Canadian/British duo Koishii & Hush switch up their sound by looking to the past (think classic Perfecto) and updating it with modern progressive elements.   The angelic breakdown is gorgeous and the keyboard work is clearly channeling modern Armin.  On the remixes, Monoverse (great name) goes a bit harder on the electro while keeping the commercial feel and Simon Templar goes deeper and more progressive.  Of special note is the Kill Bill-styled martial arts-themed video where a genetically gifted woman fights her way through quite a predicament.  The video is quite humorous and camp (maybe unintentionally) with more middle fingers in use than a Chamillionaire or Cobra Starship song.  



Reid Stefan - Yezzur - [BANZAI]


For those of us who have been fans of Reid Stefan since his Reidiculous days, his musical growth and exploration has been quite exceptional.  He has branched out from commercial bootlegs into the world of moombahton, trap, and experimental electro.  Following up the brilliant “Gangsta Girl” collaboration with Zoofunktion, he unleashes “Yezzur,” another track where he seamlessly blends trap into electro.  The mood and tempo changes are smooth and showcase production skills on par with the big guys like Zedd and tyDi.  The sample “Yezzur,” courtesy of Mike Taylor, is humorous but makes me wonder how his tracks would sound with a more fleshed out vocal.  Actually, imagine a Reid Stefan / Big Freedia collaboration, that would really get everyone twerking.  If he did a full song with Mike Taylor, most recently heard on Afrojack’s “Summerthing,” it could be his major label crossover pop hit.

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Tags
3lau     afrojack     armada     camelphat     diplo     emma hewitt     kate peters     koishii & hush     massive attack     mike taylor     perfector     reid stefan     spinnin     m.i.a.

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