Friday, July 20, 2012

STS9 - Axe the Cables - Re-mastered Acoustic Set

STS9 is incredible. I've never heard acoustic versions of their music, but this all acoustic set demonstrates their true range as musicians and how/why their music has such an organic analog feel, despite being highly electronic oriented. The acoustic version of their songs shifts between classical, jazz and folksy rock. This was released in 2009 but STS9 recently re-edited and re-mastered this album to make it even more crisp and beautiful.

Gratuitous cut-and-paste description of this set from STS9's Soundcloud Page: "In December of 2009, STS9 sat down in one of America’s most pristine modern opera houses on a chilly night in Denver, CO to create the inaugural “Axe The Cables… An Evening of STS9″. What this night encompasses is one of, if not the most flawless STS9 event in the bands decade plus history. The entire show was played, for the most part, sans all “electric” gear including the common stage instrumentation of laptops our fans have grown quite accustomed to. To say the event was a hit is an understatement. It was a night legends are made of. So much so the band has decided to re-cut, re-mix, and re-master this into one massive release."

Monday, July 16, 2012

Monday Mix #4: Nappy Riddem - Samba, Reggae & Drum&Bass Mix (All Vinyl)

Nappy Riddem (Fort Knox Recordings) is a reggae-funk band that's always on my radar because of their roots in D.C. downtempo culture. Their members work with legendary D.C. bands and artists like Thievery Corporation, Thunderball, Fort Knox Five, and See-I. This mix is from one of their members - Rex Riddim - and showcases his love of Brazilian beats combining samba and drum & bass. It truly is a chillout rasta mix laced with drum&bass energy. Many thank to Fort Knox Recordings and Andrew Cerutti (2Tuff Productions) for always sharing great music!

Also check out this interview with Nappy Riddem, courtesy of Fort Knox Recordings:

Sunday, July 15, 2012

The Upside of Down: Show Review & DJ Sets - Matthew Dear & Sleepy + Boo at Le Poisson Rouge, 6.14.12

Last night I attended Basic NYC, a house party at Le Poisson Rouge. Resident DJs Sleepy + Boo kicked off and guest Matthew Dear followed. The show was spectacular. For one, Poisson Rouge has quickly become one of my favorite NYC venues. There's no dress code, the crowd is all about the music and NOT about the "scene." The music is consistently amazing.

Before I get into the show, this post represents a slight departure from the "downtempo" music I normally share. Its difficult to segment music all the time. I find myself often wanting to share the uptempo or dance oriented music that I listen to as well. Balance is important, and uptempo is complimentary to dowtempo, its simply necessary. So with this post I'm starting a new feature: "The Upside of Down." Posts with this tag will feature more uptempo stuff that I'm enjoying when I'm not chilling with my favorite downtempo tunes. Don't worry though, this does NOT mean I will be writing about downtempo any less, just that I will be adding more uptempo flavor! Now onto the music and show:

Resident DJs Sleepy + Boo have curated the Basic NYC party for years and they are known house DJs in NYC, also hosting a monthly party at Cielo in the city. They describe their brand of house music as "thick drums, big basslines, hypnotic grooves and tripped-out sci-fi synthesizers." Unlike many house DJs, this duo keeps their mixes interesting by playing a variety of tempos, rhythms and sounds. It also helps they've created a really cool aesthetic in the club - their stage backdrop is a curtain of luminescent bulbs that create a waveform in time to the music. It also creates psychedelic swirls and visualizations.

Matthew Dear came on around 1:30AM and dropped heavy beats immediately. By that point, the crowd was well warmed, and he took us to an even deeper, tribal place. Matthew Dear (a co-founder of Ghostly International and featured artist on the label) is known around the world as an experimental electronic music producer and house DJ. His original work has a dance pop quality, but not the kind the mainstream kind that makes me groan. His DJ set certainly delivered - very heavy and deep, with all the right peaks and drops to keep the crowd grooving with him. AND I was excited to see he uses Traktor for his DJ sets - my personal DJ software of choice :)

Check them out some pics below and listen to sets by Sleepy + Boo and Matthew Dear. I suggest listening to these on some device where you can get the true bass experience. Enjoy!

Blog Archive