We’ve been sleeping on this one for like two weeks, but it definitely deserves to be posted. Thunderbird Gerard is a rapper/producer with a really cool electro-tinged hip hop style. I’m a big fan of this EP, which is saying something as I’m not a guy to listen to hip hop unless its really fucking good. Definitely give this one a listen. Enjoy!
Thunderbird Gerard – T.R.O.U.B.L.E. EP | Download |
There are few things I love more than finding a sweet track from someone with a pretty small following and being able to share it with all of you. This is a really well done chillstep bootleg of Kaskade’s latest preview track ‘Atmosphere,’ and I dig it a lot. Liam Mercier is only a freshman in college, and I’m pretty stoked to see what he accomplishes in the next couple years. Enjoy!
Kaskade – Atmosphere (Liam Mercier Bootleg) | Download |
“Follow” Liam Mercier: | Facebook |
While I generally refrain from posting my own music, I wanted to throw this mix out there so that you guys could get a taste of the type of set I’ll be playing in our upcoming Mixify festival. I did this particular minimix for my school’s inter-fraternity DJ Battle, and one of the rules was that you had to use a 90s TV Show theme song, hence the Spongebob/Skrillex mashup. I have a pretty unique Ableton setup involving a launchpad and a Korg Kaossilator Pro, and I do all my mashups live. In the intro to this mix, for example, I have stems from 7 different tracks going at the same time. It’s a little chaotic, but I have an absolute blast doing it, and I sincerely hope you guys will tune in for my opening timeslot on the Wednesday of our Mixify festival. Enjoy!
Operator – Battlefield Minimix | Download |
This is a 2 hour long album that just got released by Autosav3 and RhendeR, two guys you have probably never heard of. They make some very awesome mostly house music with a variety of styles and textures, and seriously know how to get a groove going. Definitely check out this album, I would not be surprised to see these guys go places. Here’s what they had to say about it:
This album has been in the work for almost a year and my good friend RhendeR and I have put a lot of time and energy into this album for you all. But there is no better way to share this amazing album with all you beautiful friends and fans then to give it to you for FREE!! So Please download and spread the love by postings this album everywhere and giving the joy of music to all your friends.
This album is for you. MUCH LOVE
Be sure to snag the download and like both of these guys on Facebook. Enjoy!
Autosav3 & RhendeR – Double The Flavor | Free Download |
Autosav3 is a guy you’ve probably never heard of, and he makes pretty tight music. The title of this track pretty much encapsulates everything I have to say about. It’s a funky ass house track and you will dig it. Definitely check it out and show this guy some love on his facebook page, he could use it. Enjoy!
Autosav3 vs. RhendeR – This Is Fucking House | Download |
This track has everything you want when you listen to electrohouse. The drops hit hard, the breakdowns are pretty, and the energy is always moving forward. AndDrop! always brings the heat, and we are looking forward to hearing more good stuff from them soon. They definitely live up to their name. Enjoy!
AndDrop! – Pow Wow | Download |
I’ve been waiting anxiously for this for a while now. Pretty Lights has been tearing it up for a while now, and it seems like his career has been building up to this album pretty much since he started making music. You can check out my reviews of two of his shows in the last 6 months here and here for a my own insights into what to expect from this album and what the music sounds like. Here’s some of what he had to say:
It has been 2 years, 5 months and 24 days since I last released a record. I am properly delighted to announce the release of my new full-length album A Color Map of the Sun . I began work on this album/project/experiment in February of 2011 and spent a year creating my own vinyl collection of everything I needed to produce the album I heard in my head. I spent the next year producing songs with homemade vinyl samples and a big crazy analog synth I built just for this album. It is truly Analog Electronica. It’s soulful electro hip-hop that went back in time to learn from the life of its smooth ass grandparents.
Music will always continue to evolve. On A Color Map of the Sun I challenged myself to evolve my own sound and style by looking to the past and paying respect to all the ways in which music can yield immense power; emotionally, kinetically, and as I see it, inspirationally. Basically, I tried to make an album that could make you feel your soul, move your body and maybe even stir up new ideas. I put my whole self into this album and it put itself back into me.
This is the first time I am releasing an album as a physical product at the same time as a digital version. I have double disc CDs and full length vinyl records available with amazing hard cover book packaging that looks stunning and contains a 28 page photo booklet documenting much of the making of the album. The second disc of the double CD set contains 13 additional tracks straight off the vinyl acetates that I composed and created in order to make legit sounding samples for A Color Map of The Sun.
Like always, the album will be available in its entirety as a free download on the album’s release date via prettylightsmusic.com . For the first time however, I encourage you to purchase a copy of the album. There are two honest reasons for this. The main reason is that as an artist I have always reinvested any success I have directly back into the music, the show and the art that goes along with it. Secondly, this isn’t just an album; it is a massive collection of music beyond what is on the CDs that I will continue to put out after the album release. There is an insightful documentary film on the making of this project to be released alongside the launch of the album, as well as a music video for every song. They are all beautiful and uniquely unusual pieces of art.
This “album” is a multi-medium map of my mind and my self. It is personal and honest and I put everything into it. I have stayed on the path of being a completely independent musician and with the help of every supporter and friend, we have transformed a simple idea into a movement, a cultural beacon of light. If you can, I encourage you to purchase a digital or physical copy of A Color Map of the Sun. If not…simply support by sharing the music and sharing the idea. If there is any success to be had from this album, it will go back into my rule bending, never ending quest to channel beauty and taste through music and art.
Either way, I made this music for everyone. Support this release and let’s show the world how we do. The time is now. – Derek Vincent Smith
As stated above, you can preorder a physical copy of the album on his site, and it will also be available for free download. Seriously though, buy this album. This is coming from a guy who shamelessly pirates pretty much everything. Derek Vincent Smith has given us an incredible body of work over the past several years and never asked for anything in return. If anyone deserves your money, it’s him.
Below is the music video for Around The Block, the first single off the new album. It’s a sweet summertime jam with Talib Kweli on the vocals, and the video is really, really cool. Enjoy!
Pretty Lights – Around The Block feat. Talib Kweli | Download From His Site |
I just put this song on, and as it dropped my house shattered and fell to the ground from all the bass action.
Seriously though, this track is awesome. I have always been a fan of Big G, but there latest stuff has blown everything they did previously out of the water. They’ve gotten much, much more bass heavy, and its amazing. When I saw them at Snowball last month, they played a bunch of unreleased tracks that were straight fire, and I’m pretty sure this was one of them. The whole show was an epic jazz/dubstep mindmelt. Anyway, this track is one of their best yet. Enjoy, and stay tuned for more awesome releases from these guys!
Jay-Z – Can I Get A… (Big Gigantic Remix) | Free Download from Soundcloud
I didn’t think Snowball could get any better after Day 1, and I was wrong. Unfortunately, we were pretty jetlagged, and after a morning of incredible tree runs up in the bowls, we ended up taking a solid 3 hour nap, and didn’t make it into the festival until like 7:30. It would’ve been awesome to see Luminox, Run DMT, and everyone else that was playing all afternoon, and we were bummed to have missed them. That said, everything we did make it to was incredible. We walked into the groove tent for the second half of Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, who had an awesome, heady vibe. Below, you can see a picture of the very solid crowd they drew, and the air above them full of confetti. Much like Krewella’s balloons, the confetti was a nice touch.
Up next was Datsik, who threw down HARD. He opened with Jump Back by Flux Pavilion, which was surprising and really awesome, and from there kept the vibe going with heavy bass and all the energy you would expect him to bring. There were an insane amount of people packed in to see him, and once the beats started dropping and we all got into a collective seizure, things got a little hairy. I saw a lot of people eat shit on the ice, and everyone was pushing and throwing their bodies around. Even in a situation like that though, the people of Colorado are all ridiculously nice and everyone was always apologizing to each other and generally just being really nice. For a guy from New Jersey, this always blows my mind, as back home crowds are always far more hostile towards each other.
After Datsik came Pretty Lights, who in my opinion stands head and shoulders above every other producer in the game. I could go on for a long time about how huge of a fan I am of his (), but I will spare you the details here. One of my favorite things about him is that he is constantly changing things up. I’ve seen him four times now, and each set has been totally distinct from the others. He started off his set with about a half hour of new stuff, which I assume is going to be on the album he’s been working on for a while now. It was incredibly good, and I think that when it finally gets released its gonna be a strong candidate for best album of the year.
He then went on to play crazy VIPs and standard versions of all his best songs. The highlight for me was definitely ‘I Can See It In Your Face’ because that horn line gets me every time. He then played a bunch of his older stuff, which was awesome because its all amazing. Above and below are shots of his light show, which was INSANE. He brought an absurd number of lasers, and there were all kinds of colors and crazy patterns shooting through the smoke out over the crowd. As my boy Connor made a point of saying several times, those lights were pretty.
The end of his set was ‘I Know The Truth’ followed by ‘We Must Go On.’ It was cool because I was expecting ‘I Know The Truth’ to be last, but he decided to throw in one more, and chose the mellowest track of his recent releases. As he said, instead of ending with a banger, he wanted to go out with a track full of love. as the beat dropped, he shouted “This one’s for the survivors!” and throughout his set, you could just tell he was beyond stoked to be back in his home state playing to a huge crowd of his most loyal followers.
All in all, it was a great day, and I can’t wait for tomorrow!
Wow. Today as a whole stood out as one of the best days of music I have ever experienced, definitely up there with Camp Bisco this summer. Something about being able to turn around at any given time and see a gorgeous mountain backdrop makes it a really special experience. I don’t even know where to begin to describe how incredible today was, so I guess I’ll just go chronologically.
When we arrived (and by we I mean my buddy Connor, one of our Campus Reps who is here covering the event with me), it was a gorgeous afternoon with that perfect blend of sun and snow that only seems to exist in Colorado. We got into the festival relatively quickly, and a band called Cold River City was playing on the main stage. They had a really chill reggae vibe, and were perfect for the start of the day. We got settled, hit up one of the food vendors (all of which are amazing), and then headed to the Groove Tent to see Robotic Pirate Monkey. I’ve always kind of dug Robotic Pirate Monkey because they always keep things interesting, but today they really cemented themselves as a group that I really like. Their style has changed drastically since the last release of theirs I checked out, and they were playing really bass-heavy trap and reggae-infused dubstep. As you all well know, we here at ThisSongSlaps love nothing more than trap and dubstep, especially when they’re bass heavy, and we’re pretty big fans of reggae as well. Overall, I was really impressed with Robotic Pirate Monkey and can’t wait for their new music to get released.
After Robotic Pirate Monkey, we caught the tail end of The Floozies’ set, which was really good as well. They have a sort of live drumstep feel reminiscent of Conspirator, and they were very solid overall. Next up was Zion I, who were on my radar because of the incredible Bassnectar Remix of their track ‘Human.’ They were really solid, and did some crazy freestyle rapping which blew our minds a little bit.
Unfortunately, we had to leave Zion I after only a short time, because let’s be real, what kind of self-respecting EDM blog would miss even a second of a Porter Robinson set? Certainly not us. Obviously, his set was amazing, and full of crazy edits and bootlegs and stuff. Pretty much everything he played alternated between euphoric synth breakdowns and insane dry electrohouse drops. Needless to say, it was just as awesome as anyone would have expected it to be.
After Porter, we had the fortune of catching a little bit of Orchard Lounge, who are an incredible DJ group that played deep house. Their mixing was absolutely flawless, just like the last time I saw them, and it was very easy to lose oneself in the vibey grooves they had going on.
Next up was Krewella. For some reason I never was hugely into Krewella before today, but oh my god, their set was ridiculous. I was blown away by how much energy they had and how perfectly twisted the basslines to all of their tracks were. They seriously earned my respect over the course of that hour, where I found myself going nuts in a sea of apparently seizure-prone bass heads. The highlight for me was definitely their remix of the Knife Party’s ‘Fire Hive,’ which is obscenely filthy and had me completely lost in flailing limbs to the beat. I wish I had been wearing a GoPro or something so I could show you how insane the crowd was. Overall, I would put their set as one of the best I’ve ever seen that wasn’t by either Pretty Lights or Bassnectar. They also had a whole DnB/Drumstep section towards the end that had me grooving like I was at a ska show back in high school. On top of all that, they brought a ton of big balloons, which are pictured above. You really can’t go wrong with big balloons, it was a nice touch.
After Krewella came Big Gigantic. I didn’t think I could possibly be more blown away by a performance than I had just been by Krewella’s, but I turned out to be incorrect. I’ve always been a fan of Big Gigantic’s fusion of live instrumentation and electronics, and the sax and drum playing are both phenomenal, but I was never a huge fan of their production style. Although I really dug them for the above reasons, I always felt like the produced aspects of their show left something to be desired. It turned out that that something was heavy dubstep basslines, and holy shit did they find it. Their new music was all beyond words incredible. I am insanely excited to hear their next release, and I think it will be a game changer for jazz/dubstep fusion. They played a cover of ‘Thrift Shop’ by Macklemore mashed up with their remix of Aloe Blacc’s ‘I Need A Dollar,’ which went together perfectly. I really, really hope that that gets released, as it was phenomenal. The solo Dominic took towards the end felt like it was channeling Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, and some kind of demon all at once, and the result was a burst of primal bass-infused energy that was like nothing I have ever seen before. Their new light show was also way beyond what it was the ladt time I saw them, and the picture above doesn’t do it justice (cut me some slack, it was taken with my phone and we were towards the back of the crowd because we stayed for all of Krewella). After all of that, they ended it with fireworks, which was also pretty sweet.
Overall, Day 1 of Snowball was absolutely amazing and I can’t wait for the next 2. The festival is extremely well-run, the staff are all super friendly, the lineup and setup are amazing, and the location is gorgeous and absolutely perfect. It was funny to me, as someone from New Jersey, to be at a concert where everyone was wearing boots, gloves, hats, and winter coats. I’ve never seen anything like it, and the vibe was really awesome. For those of you who are from the East Coast like I am, I highly recomment you make this pilgrimage one day. There’s something about Colorado that just makes it like no other place in the world. The people are amazing, the landscape is gorgeous, the music scene is incredible, and on top of all that, there is world class skiing and snowboarding right down the road.
Stay tuned for more recaps the next two days! Who did those of you who are also here like best tonight?