Wednesday
Aug202014

Cool Free Stuff: LO'99-Can U (House/Bass)

Some grooving house on a fresh label from down under. LO’99 may be a brand new artist, but the vision as evidenced in “Can U” is nothing but classic: groove, simplicity, and catchiness. Easily ticking all three boxes on this dancefloor-friendly jam, “Can U”’s heavy pads and hollow bass complement each other perfectly, while the 3-word catchphrase filters in and out in unison. And a couple nice build-ups ensure heavy club rotation as well. Free download here.

Tuesday
Aug192014

Cool Free Stuff: Menage a Moi-New Jack Attack LP (House/New Jack Swing)

If you’re looking for a new jack swing bootleg (or thirteen of them) to add to your playlists, today’s your lucky day. Boston-turned-San Francisco transplant Menage a Moi painstakingly spent much of the past several months bringing early 90s hits by the likes of Bobby Brown, Keith Sweat, Johnny Gill, and Bell Biv Devoe up to date, with little more than a modern analog drum machine/sampler and a lifetime love of the sound often attributed to Teddy Riley.

“I just knew that I loved Keith Sweat”, said Menage a Moi in his lengthy thought process behind the compilation. “I even proposed to my wife on stage at one of his concerts in Oakland, CA.” If that isn’t re-assuring enough that revisiting new jack swing wasn’t just a flavor of the month for this guy, I’m not sure what is!

All of these tracks completely re-work thirteen different hits, and interestingly enough rely very little on unprocessed samples from the original versions. This means new drums, new grooves, and new pads; only some of the original vocals remain. In extreme cases, pitched-down versions of the vocals replace the original ones, giving Michael Jackson’s “Remember the Time” and Bobby Brown’s “Don’t Be Cruel” a much more sinister feel. 

Menage a Moi will be joining forces with 3 AM Devices label boss Andy Kershaw for a debut live show at Housepitality in San Francisco on September 10th; moving forward they will be play live together as a duo under this guise. Be sure to follow both Menage’s Soundcloud here as well as 3 AM Devices for the best of both worlds.

Monday
Aug182014

The Dreaded DJ Bio: Six Tips to Make A Good One

I am happy to announce I had a guest post published on DJ Tech Tools earlier today. It’s a tutorial designed to help DJ’s of all experience levels write or update their bios. Writing it was inspired by a thread I started on Facebook about it earlier this summer which instantly turned into a hot topic with a lot of different opinions. After doing a query on DJTT and realizing a blog on bio writing had yet to be written, I saw a good opportunity. 

Over the past month or two I’ve quietly been brainstorming additional “how to” type posts for DJ’s and producers. Look out for them either on here, or as a guest writer for something bigger!

Read the full article here

Monday
Aug182014

Featured Mixes: John Barera's FACT Mag Mix (House/Disco/Techno)

I want to give a special shout-out to my homie John Barera, who just got to do the honors laying down the most recent mix in the venerable FACT Mag series. After years of hard work laying down tracks in his humble Chinatown studio, it’s great to see he’s starting to get some proper airtime on respected institutions like FACT and Resident Advisor. As this is only the second FACT mix coming from Boston behind Soul Clap (to my knowledge), it’s definitely worth a mention here on BBD. 

The magnitude of the occasion aside, I’ve navigated through this hour-and-a-half session and I ensure you there is no filler or stuff you’re used to hearing every day in this mix. Opening up with some Gil Scott-Heron (the jacket of which is proudly placed on display in Barara’s flat), this mix explores the underground house and techno music of yesterday, today, and the future (in the form of forthcoming tracks from his debut LP with Will Martin on Dolly). Rare disco and boogie grooves, alongside a re-edit or three, are peppered in for color.  

If you listen long enough, you’ll notice Barera increases the tempo significantly towards the end as he unleashes some unapologetic Detroit techno. It seems he’s been inspired from the recent trip we both took to the Movement festival, where we did some record shopping at the Submerged store all the while getting the chance to meet Mike Banks and take a tour of the Underground Resistance studio. Good stuff!

Direct embedding from FACT’s Soundcloud is disabled, but follow this link to listen to the mix; you may also read the official write-up and get the tracklist on FACT Mag’s site.

Monday
Aug182014

On the Boogiedownload: Mix 082 by Overscan (Deep Drum & Bass)

Drum and bass mixes with the latest hits from Loadstar, Wilkinson, and Noisia come a dime a dozen. This means every time a session beyond 170 beats per minute comes across my desk with a selection that is friendlier to the headphones rather than the dancefloor, it’s always a pleasant surprise.  

Click here to read more and check out the mix!

Monday
Aug182014

Let's Boogie! Upcoming Boston Events For August 2014

Upcoming Events  

Drop It Open Decks (Gary Carlow) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.19.14
Drunken Doja Monkey, Light Bright, Moduloktopus & Micetro @ Wonderbar :: Allstion MA :: 8.19.14
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Doctor G @ 6B Lounge :: Boston MA :: 8.20.14
Deep Field (DJ Won’t) @ ZuZu :: Cambridge MA :: 8.20.14
HNDMD (Time Wharp) @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 8.20.14
Bella Terra Pre-Party (JSB, Bake Joynton & SwediShef) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 8.20.14
Re:Set (Richie Monaghan, DJ Reverence & Patrick Barry) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.20.14
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Elements (DJ Dara) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.21.14
Make it New (Residents) @ Middlesex Lounge :: Cambridge MA :: 8.21.14
Squnto & Friends (DUDEnGUY & Rowah) @ Middle East Upstairs :: Cambridge MA :: 8.21.14
Dubco Presents Sonar (Aobeats, Hunt for the Breeze, Nick Garcia) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.21.14
Dusk Til Done Boat Cruise (Patrick Barry, Mr. Dereloid, Caseroc, Jeff Farr & Jacob Kranz) @ 200 Seaport Blvd :: Boston MA :: 8.21.14 (7-11pm)
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Robyn & Royksopp @ BoA Pavilion :: Boston MA :: 8.22.14
Stacey Pullen & Wil Trahan @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 8.22.14
The Leap #3 (Jeff Allen, Ryan Challinor, MTN & More) @ Industry Lab :: Cambridge MA :: 8.22.14
Rise Afterhours (Bamboora, Highest Point, Jaminic, Glowkids & Fuse) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 8.22.14
Pico Picante (Riobamba, Slick Vick, Bianca Oblivion & DJ Dayglow) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.22.14
Binary (Jordan Breau, Vestival, Buttnekked Wonder, Mikey Maags & more) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 8.22.14
Bella Terra Festival (Conspirator, Hieroglyphics, Night Moves, Keys N Krates, Papadosio, Break Science, Rootz Underground, Minnesota & more) @ Stephentown NY :: 8.21-24.14
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Draw Presents #1: GAEZ @ TBD :: Boston MA :: 8.23.14
Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (Dirty South) @ Great Scott :: Allston MA :: 8.23.14
Party in the Park (M.O.T.H. & Bob Diesel) @ Jeep Jones Park :: Roxbury MA :: 8.23.14 (12pm)
Fresh Produce (Tommee, Knife, Arcitype, Mr. Fritz & Reel Drama) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.23.14
Some Like it Hott (Patrick Barry, Charles Mazzola & Megan Daly) @ Lilypad :: Somerville MA :: 8.23.14
Desperate Housevibes (Julius Papp, Shadow Kings, Househead Pete, Cruzz & Bruno) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.23.14
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H.O.M.E. (Jay Medina) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.24.14
Scanners (Golden Donna, Sweet William, Coralcola & DJ Won’t) @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.24.14
Boston Urban Music Festival (Talib Kweli, Clinton Sparks, Shea Rose & more) @ City Hall Plaza :: Boston MA :: 8.24.14
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Knife Party @ Royale :: Boston MA :: 8.28.14
Allgood 1-Year Anniversary @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.28.14
Make it New (Avalon Emerson) @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.28.14
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Social Studies (Jacques Renault) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.29.14
Videodrome Discotheque Madonna Birthday Party @ Oberon :: Cambridge MA :: 8.29.14
Rise Afterhours (Case & Point, Deezy & Embee, Samuel Whiting, Lucas Alexander & Verness) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 8.29.14
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NSS Boat Cruise (Jaminic & SHuFF) @ Salem MA :: 8.30.14
Real Housevibes of Boston (K CIV, Alan Manzi & Sammy Savuth) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.30.14
Lifted Contingency Label Takeover (Robokid, Tone Ra, Graphs & Kidd Drunkadelic) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.30.14

Past Events

Archnemesis @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 8.1.14
Wil Trahan Back 2 Basics Night @ Bijou :: Boston MA :: 8.1.14
Bassic (Amit, Scotch1, C-Dubs & Damian Silva) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.1.14
Scanners (Container, Max Elibacher, DEV/NULL & DJ Won’t) @ Club Bohemia :: Cambridge MA :: 8.1.14
Rise Afterhours (Alan Manzi, Balitmoroder, Charles Mazzola & Patrick Barry) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 8.1.14
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Adventure Club Boat Cruise @ 200 Seaport Blvd :: Boston MA :: 8.2.14
Triple Platinum (Evaredy, Frank White & Durkin) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.2.14
Rise Afterhours (Nightriders, Pat Fontes & Sopforic) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 8.2.14
Heroes (Chris Ewen & Teresa Niedzwiecki) @ TT the Bears :: Cambridge MA :: 8.2.14
Blend (Bruno, Cruzz, Melee, Fox, Ali Berger, Twist of Fate, Frydae, Rebel, Storyteller & Josiah Scribes) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.2.14
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Jump Shot (Damien Paul & Bob Diesel) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.3.14
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Ceremony (Lost Boy & Black/Mail) @ Arc :: Boston MA :: 8.4.14
Charanjit Singh & Heems @ Middle East Downstairs :: Cambridge MA :: 8.4.14
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Drop it Open Decks (Dig Doug) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.5.14
MMMMAVEN Project Graduation Party @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.5.14
Lost in Boston (Erothyme, White Robot, Brown Belt & Microsorcerer) @ Wonderbar :: Allston MA :: 8.5.14
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Project Mixx Playground (Mark Basnett) @ 6B Lounge :: Boston MA :: 8.6.14
Legacy (DJ Knife, Alexxan & Sterling Golden) @ ZuZu :: Cambridge MA :: 8.6.14
Re:Set (Shiba San & Charles Mazzola) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.6.14
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Vandalism & Exodus @ Cure :: Boston MA :: 8.7.14
Crush Boston (Sadhu) @ Middle East :: Cambridge MA :: 8.7.14
Elements (Big & Dope) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.7.14
Make it New (Detroit Swindle) @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.7.14
Isai Lucky (Lil Internet, Ju Lee, Amadeezy, Blk Adonis & Melizard) @ O Sushi :: Cambridge MA :: 8.7.14
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Snuglife 6 @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.8.14
So Dope Summer Smoke @ Commonwealth :: Quincy MA :: 8.8.14
FRESHHH Fridays (J.Zamora, KosKos & Sudo) @ O Sushi :: Cambridge MA :: 8.8.14
Funk Summit (Deano Sounds & Ty Jesso) @ City Hall Plaza :: Boston MA :: 8.8.14 (6-10pm)
Traffic Jamz Stop Light Dance Party (Colby Drasher) @ Milky Way :: Jamaica Plain MA :: 8.8.14
Rise Afterhours (Overwerk, Voltran, Mizeyesis, Leefo, Deadpool & Dirty Fresh) @ Rise :: Boston MA :: 8.8.14
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Sweet Shop (J Paul Getto) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.9.14
Heroes (Chris Ewen) @ TT the Bears :: Cambridge MA :: 8.9.14
Fresh Headz BBQ on the River (Beta Ghosts, Josh Finley, Haitian, Smeed & Suspence, XZakLee, DIGI, Charles Mazzola, Psno & Georgie Michael) @ Marsh Post #442 :: Cambridge MA :: 8.9.14
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H.O.M.E. (DJ Soul) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.10.14
String & Fader QUARTET @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.10.14 (7-11pm)
Jump Shot (Massacur & Texas Mike) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.10.14
Brunch Benefit For Allston Street Fire Residents @ ZuZu :: Cambridge MA :: 8.10.14 (2:30-5pm)
Mad Decent Block Party (Diplo, DJ Snake, Flosstradamus, GTA, Lunice, Vic Mensa, Walshy Fire & Wave Racer) @ Blue Hills Bank Pavilion :: Boston MA :: 8.10.14
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Gallery (Disco Nihilist) @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.12.14
Drop it Open Decks (The Storyteller) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.12.14
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Feed Me @ House of Blues :: Boston MA :: 8.14.14
Make it New (Bordello) @ Middlesex :: Cambridge MA :: 8.14.14
Janet vs Madonna V4 (Paul Foley) @ ZuZu :: Boston MA :: 8.14.14
Elements (Doc Scott) @ Phoenix Landing :: Cambridge MA :: 8.14.14
Feed Me Afterparty (Glowkids & Fuse) @ Foundation Room :: Boston MA :: 8.14.14
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Sweet Shop (Vanilla Ace) @ Goodlife :: Boston MA :: 8.15.14
This Old House (Juice Belushi)@ Rivergods :: Cambridge MA :: 8.15.14
STL GLD Album Release @ Brighton Music Hall :: Allston MA :: 8.15.14
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Sonic Beating Presents Flux @ TBD :: Cambridge MA :: 8.16.14
Boston Loft Reunion (DJ Bruno) @ Paris St Gallery :: Everett MA :: 8.16.14
DJ Costa & Kirill Boat Cruise :: 200 Seaport Blvd :: Boston MA :: 8.16.14
Sin-O-Matic 9-Year Anniversary (Shivar & Znuh) @ Machine :: Boston MA :: 8.16.14
Absolute BBQ Pre-Party (Osheen & Patrick Barry) @ Christian Herter Park :: Allston MA :: 8.16.14
Crush Boston (Stoop Kids, DUDEnGUY, Robokid, n0ms & Whistler) @ Middle East Downstairs :: Cambridge MA :: 8.16.14
Absolute Xperience (Hardkiss Brothers, Frank White, Lenore, Caseroc, Alan Manzi, Cutmaster TKO & Adam Warped) @ Arc :: Boston MA :: 8.16.14
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Bass Oasis (DiGi, General Motor, Mad Mauritian, Micro Sorcerer & Light Blue Laboratory) @ An Tain :: Boston MA :: 8.17.14
Cruise Control (Viral Sound, Blue Boy Productions, Don Fochi, Jaminic & Hot Pot) @ 200 Seaport Blvd :: Boston MA :: 8.17.14 (3-6pm)
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Monday
Aug182014

Cool Free Stuff: Stranjah-Too Much (Liquid Drum & Bass)

Sampha’s hyper-emotional ballad “Too Much” has made quite a few waves over the past year, thanks in no small part to Drake, who employed the piano and vocals quite heavily on a version he made for his Nothing Was the Same album. Now another Toronto native takes an (unofficial) crack at re-interpreting the original, in the form of a drum and bass roller from Stranjah. A light-handed approach, Stranjah replaced the original piano with layers of pads alongside a no-nonsense breakbeat. Sampha’s vocals are largely left untouched, helping retain almost all of the original vibe. Free download on Stranjah’s Soundcloud page

Monday
Aug112014

Cool Free Stuff: Aten Rays & Hatter-Lost (Trap)

While the 808 drumkit is synonymous with trap music, along with sirens, over-the-top buildups and the obligatory “what” vocal stab, it’s always cool to see producers taking chances on working with sounds one would not normally associate with the style. Such as New York’s Aten Rays and Texas’s Hatter. In their collab “Lost”, they’ve laid down a trap tune that is completely unconventional with its use of tabla drums and a myriad of middle eastern influenced samples. While the 808 still augments the Indian kit, extensive reverb is used to create the impression it’s being played in a large hall. Free download below.

Friday
Aug082014

Cool Free Stuff: Simtem-Oh My (Trap)

Found this one at random on Soundcloud this morning. Simtem is an 18-year old trap producer from out of Canada who has been building his following through a long series of free tracks that are mostly originals (as opposed to just remixes of bigger tunes). “Oh My”, released earlier today, gets down the business almost immediately with its cinematic strings and an instant build. It uses sounds typically associated with the genre (high-pitched bleeps and an 808 kit), but the beat on this one is pretty funky and the hi-hat rolls keep it moving. Check it out below.  

Thursday
Aug072014

Thursday Throwback! Jesse Velez-Girls Out On The Floor (1985)

Few can argue that Trax was one of the cornerstone labels of early house music. But in the midst of all the classics Marshall Jefferson, DJ Pierre, and Frankie Kunckles penned on that imprint there are always a couple long-forgotten gems, such as “Girls Out on the Floor” by Jesse Velez.

Cited by many pioneers as one of the first artists to incorporate Latin music with house, this was one of the only singles Velez had the chance to release before sadly taking his life in 1985. It was also only the second 12” Trax had ever released, so Velez unfortunately never had the chance to watch the fledgling label go on to release hundreds of seminal singles over the next two decades. 

The Latin American flavor in “Girls Out on the Floor” is undeniable, from the spanglish freestyle vocals to the funky Caribbean drum kits and guitar fills that provide the backbone of this classic. The baseline reminds me of a lot of UK funky and post-dubstep that permeated across the pond as recently as five years ago too. 

Latin influences would eventually evolve to take a strong presence in freestyle, house, and hip hop in the late 1980s. But long-lost bits like this served as a fine forecast for what was to come a few years later.