This Week in Dance Music: Carnage has dropped the project deeply to focus on his house aka Gordo, San Francisco’s premier festival Portola has released a scorching lineup for its September event, Above & Beyond has launched a new label focused on on downtempo and ambient, Purple Discoo Machine released an excellent predictable edition of Lizzo’s “About Damn Time”, San Holo teamed up with meditation app Calm for a series of mixes reflecting a trio of moods , Alison’s album Wonderland Lonely debuted at No. 3 on Hot Dance/Electronic Albums, we delivered a definitive nine-step guide to EDC Las Vegas this weekend, asked 20 questions of Goldie and James Davidson in conjunction with their latest album as Subjective, and asked Flume that same number of questions about his new album and his vegetable garden.
New music? Definitely, that too. Let’s dig.
KH, “Watch Your Pager”
As with his 2019 track “Only Human”, KH (Kieran Hebden, aka Four Tet) sparked the hype around his latest single, “Looking At Your Pager”, with a one sentence: “The sample has been deleted.” (Prior to the statement, he had played the song in his sets to much fan interest.) Over the years, Hebden has shown his distinct mastery of manipulating pop vocals into dancefloor bangers such than “Only Human”, which samples Nelly Furtado. 2006 song “Afraid”. On “Looking At Your Pager”, KH samples “No More (Baby I’ma Do Right)”, the debut single from 2000 by American pop-R&B trio 3LW.
In his hands, band member Kiely Williams’ already sugary vocals take on a more otherworldly tone, delivering an eerie high to the sped-up production and wubby bassline. KH flips the script (mandatory “playa pleathe”) halfway through, complementing the sharp sounds with a spread of soft, trance-like chimes that fall somewhere between floating on a cloud and baby’s first mobile lullaby. What on paper doesn’t seem to work, oddly works – because in Hebden’s world, of course, it does. — KRISTAL RODRIGUEZ
Under Focus feat. Gene Farris, “It’s About Time”
People, it’s time to get up out of your seats and get excited. We’re talking laser beams, smoke machines, and hard synth rave. We’re talking about Chicago house legend Gene Farris speaking to a hyper London beat. We’re talking about the latest single from Sub Focus which just lit up the dance floor at the producer’s first gig at Printworks in the UK
“After seeing Chemical Brothers perform live at Glastonbury 2019, I felt motivated to rethink my live show, which culminated in the first Circular Sound show at Printworks last year,” said Sub Focus. “This track was originally conceived as a special track for him, trying to capture some of Chem’s very special, brain-melting energy, with spoken house music and drums and bass. Lots of my tracks start with “what would happen if you combined these two kinds of experiences”, and that’s a good example. KAT BEIN
Roosevelt feat. Nile Rodgers, “Passion”
The sound and vibe of this one is right there in the title. German producer Roosevelt bonded with his idol, disco icon Nile Rodgers, and the two artists spent two years crafting this track via phone, email and international file sharing. The end result exudes its namesake emotion, with Rodgers’ classic funk disco guitar work, synth flourishes and a full gospel choir on vocals giving this one that big night feel.
“This man is a living legend to me, and just talking to him about the early days of disco was such an inspiration,” Roosevelt said of his collaboration with Rodgers. “’Passion’ is an ode to Studio 54, a tribute to the energy and ecstasy of late 70s disco.” Roosevelt is touring North America and Europe this summer, with dates including Splash House, Electric Forest and a host of club shows. — KATIE BATH
Naughty Dog, “Fierce Disco”
Over the past two years, Chient Méchant has only really existed in one-minute spurts. The Parisian duo In The Kennel The series of videos on YouTube unveil breathtaking jam sessions with jazzy keyboard tracks and drum solos as heavenly as the tapestries that line the walls of their studio. Their first original release finally arrived this week (May 18) in the form of the track “Fierce Disco”, a preview of Today Records’ upcoming compilation. Club Today, Vol. 1.
“Disco Féroce” sounds like piano house on a double espresso. The spontaneity of Chient Méchant’s jam sessions flows through their bright keys and flurries of floating percussion, tied together by whimsical synth oscillations and sparse vocals. A silent breakdown and a return to nature, for a total of five minutes and a change, cap off a passionate demonstration of what this duo can do with over 60 seconds. – KR
G Jones & Eprom, “Last Ride”
Two of the weirdest and most wonderful experimental bass producers in the world have just released a collaborative EP that will send your ears down a rabbit hole. G Jones and Eprom are proud to present acid disc 2, a collection of songs that unfurl like a psychedelic tunnel of twisted metal.
“This EP has been in the works for a few years, and I’m extremely happy to finally see these tracks making their way into the world,” says G Jones. “Eprom is one of my favorite artists and my biggest inspirations, and I am proud and honored to have collaborated with him on this corpus.”
Some of the songs on this EP are true collaborations, while others are singular works by each artist independently that come together to tell a greater sonic narrative. Here we highlight the EP’s closing track, which is a manic yet melodic collaborative track called “Final Lap” – but definitely listen to the whole thing and enjoy the full visualizer too. “So happy to have this EP out in the world,” said Eprom. “It’s our take on the genres that have influenced us. We love acidic music and the versatility of sound in all its forms, and we hope that shines through in this release. – K.Bein
Sylvan Esso, “Sunburn”
North Carolina duo return with ‘Sunburn,’ their first release since their 2020 Grammy-nominated album free love. An extension of the married couple’s quirky, intelligent sound, the track is a tribute to the excess of a good thing. The duo write: “‘Sunburn’ is eating candy until you’re sick, riding your bike too fast on a hill, when you’re five and don’t want to get out of the water, and in the end you You are shaking and all your fingers are prunes and your lips have turned purple, an unsuspectingly sneaking undertow, the painful throbbing pink of swollen eyelids that remain after a day in the sun, plunging forward unsuspectingly have time to guess. Like all of the aforementioned things, this concise electronic pop bop is well worth your time. K.Bath