Music for the Masses

Music for the Masses

by DJ Ron Slomowicz
06.24.2016

A roundup of great electro, indie dance, drum and bass, ambient, future bass/house, deep house, and progressive tracks.



Disclosure - Moog for Love EP - [PMR/ISLAND]

Following up a massive debut album is often quite a challenge.  No matter how good Caracal was, there was no way it could match the success of Disclosure’s groundbreaking album ‘Settle,’ which crossed over globally.   The Lawrence brothers have moved forward, releasing a rather brilliant EP that showcases their unique strengths.  “Boss” is reminiscent of their first album, an instantly memorable dancefloor filler with a shuffling house beat and vocals filtering in and out of focus.  “Feel Like I Do” has a slower tempo, making it more like danceable r&b or a modern derivation of classic disco.  The title track goes deeper and groovier with a bit of an experimental vibe coming from the progressive vibes of Eats Everything.  If the EP is a blueprint for a new album - a mix of tracks that sound like what they are known for, some soulful house, and a bit of experimental vibes, that would be a good thing.  Though after listening their refreshing take of soul music on “Feel Like I Do” and remembering how wonderful their work with Mary J Blige on her last album was, it makes us wish that Disclosure would make an album of modern soulful dance music featuring legendary r&b vocalists.  



Walden - Sunny Side - [WALDEN]

Summer is here and it’s time for some happy music.  Australian producer Walden returns with a slight change in his sound - a little less electro/stadium than his previous work (Intropial, First Day, No Ordinary Love) and more of a modern take of '90s piano house with Prydzian progressive.  “Sunny Side” is perfectly titled with a lighter and happier uplifting groove complete with memorable hooks all throughout. Some of the hooks sound familiar - could they be interpolations of Pizzaman and Fatboy Slim classics?  Regardless, “Sunny Side” is perfect summertime music and the only thing that could possibly be missing would be a sumptuous topline, by Havana Brown maybe?  Walden is offering it as a free download on his Soundcloud - be sure to also check out his aptly title Brightness Sessions podcasts. 


Rufus Du Sol - Be With You - [SWEAT IT OUT]

Speaking of Aussies making summer-friendly dance music, Rufus Du Sol unleash the fourth single from their brilliant ‘Innerbloom’ album.  “Be With You” is chilled out, more similar in vibe to “Say A Prayer For Me” than the trippy album title track.  When listening to their album, this is the song I find myself going back to and singing along with.  There is something about the chorus which makes it quite addictive. For club consumption, remixes by Booka Shade, Friend Within, Sondrio, and Stereogamous (aka Paul Mac), push the limits by exploring different flavors of experimental house.




Liam Summer ft Mikaela Coco - When You Do Me Like That - [SONY]

Trop-pop?  Is that what we should call the flavor of dance music that seems to be dominating radio stations this summer?  For a fresh take on the sound, take a listen to Belgian producer Liam Summer’s seductively sweet “When You Do Me Like That.”  Though the tempo is clearly trop, there is such a classic house vibe that it sounds like he slowed down a '90s garage track and added some basehouse elements to the mix.  Add in the vocals of Miss Coco and you’ve got a hit that will fit in with the plethora of Justin Bieber, Rihanna, and Selena Gomez hits that you are regularly subjected to.




Bonnie McKee - I Want It All (Vicetone Remix) - [BONNIE MCKEE MUSIC]

The ravishingly addictive electropop smash “Bombastic,” complete with the demonic aerobic video, was one of last summer’s guiltiest pleasures. So much so that many overlooked the equally brilliant “I Want It All,” which was also on Bonnie McKee’s EP.  Remedying the oversight for this summer, dutch duo Vicetone pump up the bpm slightly (from 109 to 115) and transform the indie-flavored dance pop song into a hybrid trop/electro remix jam.  If you imagine a Diplo/DJ Snake production with a bit more energy, you got the idea of what this perfect summer cruising anthem sounds like.





Tourist - Too Late - [MONDAY]

‘U’ was not the album we expected from Tourist.  From the cowriter of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” and the artist behind “Holding On” and “Illuminate" came a much more experimental collection of soundscapes with minimal vocal samples deployed for great effect.   While the tracks are quite strong, “Too Late” stands out with a sound similar to vintage Underworld and Massive Attack while feeling completely futuristic in execution.   Don’t be surprised if this track resurfaces in the next few months with a new vocal topline on it, it is just that memorable.




Chase & Status ft George the Poet - Spoken Word - [MERCURY]

Call me jaded, but Rozalla’s “Everybody’s Free (To Feel Good)” is one of those classic records that has been reworked so many times that updating it just seems like a cliche.  “Spoken Word” changed my mind.  Drum and bass/dubstep producers Chase & Status use the chorus over an old school breakbeat track to punctuate the uplifting words of George the poet.  This is positive music for your soul and if you listen closely, you will be inspired to reach for the “destiiny with your name on it.” 

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