Monday, December 28, 2015

FM Attack - Corazon

 For walking about on cold days.

Dark Chillwave: Future Holograms

Future Holograms presents an intersection between the airy, cold tones associated with 'Chillwave', but incorporating some synthy stabs and darker elements in some of their tracks. Vocals are also floating around, which works for most tracks. Good background or upbeat resting music.

Chillwave: Petite Casket - Toxic

Some tracks are reminiscent of the haziness I loved in High Tides.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Future Unlimited - Offbeat Music Vol. 2

While trying to track down individual songs and remixes from Future Unlimited's "Offbeat Music, Vol. 2",

I found the video for Ryan Paris - Dolce Vita:

 It's a catchy, carefree 80's track, but what jumps out immediate from the comments section is the contrast between people of the 80s and the modern era, encapsulated by comments like these:

 That was the life 1983 was really a dolce vita. Now we have this dark world with tech every where.

Other point to the lack of wearable technology that people defer to when they're uncomfortable, nervous, or bored. Interesting to think that we're living in a non-stylized cyberpunk dystopia the 80's themselves imagined.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

SLOW MAGIC & Friends

I highly recommend seeing SLOW MAGIC live: between the live, upbeat drum versions of his tracks and the LED mask, it was a great experience to see live in Toronto this past November.

While listening to his discography recently, I also noticed that Slow Magic - Feel Flow would mix very well with Purity Ring - Belispeak. See for yourself:

Thursday, November 12, 2015

NOBLE OAK at The Silver Dollar Nov. 2015 Live Concert

Awash in hues of blue and magenta, The one man band 'Noble Oak' crafted a compelling form of emotive chillwave. Originally from Vancouver, ' Patrick' has recently moved to Toronto, Ontario. 

I first heard his music in the spring of this year, and hearing it now still transports me to a tropical, introspective place. Patrick's live show was impressive - draped in his guitar and surrounded by various synthesizers and his laptop and microphone, he performed the work of a whole band single handed my. over was only $7, and provides access to multiple bands. Unfortunately, Noble Oak's synth-based, highly textured sound was in a category of its own that evening. 

In a set lasting 30 minutes, Noble Oak combined smooth, tropical background texture with live riffs from various synthesizers, his guitar, and his voice to create a sonic space that was somber, yet upbeat. Songs ranged from soulful to danceable synthpop and back again. The only disappointing aspect of the set was its relatively short length, as other artists needed setup and performance time.  I and friends eagerly await Patrick's next performance as 'Noble Oak'. C

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

TYCHO - Elsewhere Burning Man 2015 Set


Top 20 tracks with personal anecdotes from Joshua Leeds

A fascinating article that mingles musical recommendation with personal anecdotes from Joshua Leeds life and experiences. Joshua is best known for his part in Telefon Tel Aviv and current productions with Sons of Magdalene in sombre minimalist electronica.

A few of my favourites from his list of 20 tracks:

Autechre - Eutow

Round Five - Na Fe Throw It (Feat. Tikiman)

william basinski - melancholia ii

Aphex Twin - Rhubarb

Red House Painters - Have You Forgotten

Wendy & Bonnie - Children Laughing

Sunday, August 30, 2015

GUNSHIP - Synthwave

Interesting not only for the fact John Carpenter narrates the introduction to GUNSHIPS track "Technoir" claymation music video, but also for the overall vocal synthwave sound UK based GUNSHIP produces for their album. 


 Also worth listening to are the remixes by Carptner Brut, and Makeup & Vanity Set.

Friday, July 31, 2015

High Tides ~ ~ ~ Chillwave

High Tides self-titled 1st release is some very relaxing tropical/coastal sounding chillwave (in the vein of Tycho) with a touch of TOBACCO's Psychrock and some wonderful nowave styled looping mixed in.

The pre-release tracks (Coastal Cruise '86, and Sunware) compromised my go-to soundtrack this summer, and I can't recommend High Tides enough:

Five of the tracks even have custom music videos that use recycled vintage 8mm-style beach videos from the 1960s-1980s to further shape the beach aesthetic High Tides flows with. It's a nice touch.

Interestingly enough, some early versions of the tracks are available on a near-forgotten Soundcloud account, but have been primarily released through Rad Cult (Tobacco's label) on their Soundcloud.

The only substantial presence this has is on BandCamp - so go buy this now, as it's worth appreciating in levels beyond the 128k MP3 preview quality.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Vaporwave sampling

WhoSampled, a great resource.




I've been aware of this genre of music for some time, but had no idea it had a name. It didn't fit into any genre playlists I'd constructed, but the mood fit perfectly with many specific mix sets as bumpers, or transitions from one state to another. Fitting that it would be called 'Vaporwave':

Vaporwave was first characterized by its heavy use of samples from late 70's, '80s, '90s and early 2000's music, typically lounge, smooth jazz or Muzak. Samples are often pitched, layered or altered in classic chopped and screwed style.
The genre emerged in 2011 from online communities [...] Imagery associated with vaporwave includes glitch art, Classical sculpture, '90s web design, outmoded computer renderings and classic cyberpunk aesthetics. 
Use of Japanese characters and other non western writing systems is also prominent. Music writer, Adam Harper of Dummy Mag, describes the genre as "ironic and satirical or truly accelerationist", and that the name "vaporwave" itself is a nod to both vaporware, products that are announced but never actually manufactured or cancelled, and to the idea of [emotional] energy being subjected to relentless sublimation under capitalism. [Wikipedia]

Often, Infinity Frequencies [SoundCloud] tracks feel like I've fallen asleep as a child with the TV on: back when signals were analogue, and subject to distortion. I miss those days. More to be found via Reddit.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

NUMERALS - A collective of artists

It's difficult to describe exactly what the various artists in NUMERALS (Holy Flareheartmath², OLFVN, among others) are, exactly, or who's producing the music from their online presence alone. 

In particular, OLFVN seems like it could be a girl in Japan, given the album art, track listings, and highly curated tumblr - but in a world of interest-based identities, it could easily be a white male living in Nova Scotia. The music mirrors the visual component - a shadow, a black absence of form - it's defined by what it isn't, and the rest is left to the viewer own points of reference to fill in.

Regardless, most of the music of the NUMERALS collective touches on the triangles and triple-clap motifs seen in "witchhouse" music, but has a deeper bass beat, and is generally less Gothic-inspired, and more diverse with the references it draws. Very interesting stuff.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Friday, June 12, 2015

High Tides - Tropical Chillwave

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Psychedelic Rock - Black Moth Super Rainbow, TOBACCO, Demon Queen

Illustrations by Ryan Haran
I've been listening to this genre of modern psychedelic synth-rock for a few weeks now, and decided to put together a listing to make it more accessible for people. 

It's hard to describe exactly what it is: retro pastiche, psudo-acid visuals with a vintage synthesizer sound and use of vocoders- all sounding like they were recorded on to a VHS cassette, and left to bake in the sun for a decade. 

I like it, but your mileage my vary:

DEMON QUEEN - Love Hour Zero

Black Moth Super Rainbow- Gold Splatter

 Black Moth Super Rainbow - Smile the Day After Today

Black Moth Super Rainbow - Twin of Myself

 For more experimental psychedelic rock, check out this playlist I've put together over at SoundCloud:


 Black Moth Super Rainbow - Lost, Picking Flowers In The Woods (EP)

TOBACCO - Mystic Thickness (Album)

On a side note, much of the instruments, effects, and general psychedelic vibe coming out of BMSR/TOBACCO/Demon Queen fits with the spooky aesthetic found in the Memory Tapes Halloween mixes (Walk Me Home, 1-3):

Friday, June 5, 2015

André Obin - Further Away

Further Away - Lyrics:

I try to live a simple life
thoughts keep getting me tangled up inside
suddenly find that there's no place left to hide
got no choice, just keep flying through the night
I find it hard to remain in light
whilst evil forces continue to conjure fright
in rapture of heart, with pleasure and delight
they come to steal your dreams disguised under pale moon light
we can get further away
get further than them
I tried to live a simple life
but demons always seem to creep up from behind
now that I see I've been taken for a ride
need to find my voice just to help me turn the tide
we can get further away
get further than them

More tracks by André Obin here

Friday, May 29, 2015

Kauf - Relocate (Psychemagik Remix)

Kauf - Relocate (Psychemagik Remix feat. Henrietta Tiefenthaler) 

Kauf - Relocate 

There's a great playlist of KAUF tracks available on Youtube as well.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Really enjoying PASTEL GHOST right now. Tagged as 'dreamrave', it hits the right combination of driving electronic beat associated with post-rave synthpop music like TR/ST, Mr Kitty, with the dreamwave/shoegaze influences in the voacals and production. Some of it reminds me of Crystal Castles, but without the 'gameboy drowning in a bathtub' vibe. Check out PASTEL GHOST, and related artists - Excellent stuff. I hope she tours Toronto sometime this year.

East Troy Music - Softerall

This track has a great, driving synth, reflective/wistful female lyrics, and a chord progression near the end that sounds like Brad Fidel's "TERMINATOR" theme. 

It was also featured in this equally amazing set by Benzin187:

Friday, May 1, 2015

Witchtrap and Bieber

I might be hearing things, but to me this sounds like a reworked sample from Justin Bieber's "Baby" song, sampled as the hook for this super-dark Witchtrap song:


Monday, April 6, 2015

etaΛЮƂǪɃb - Russian Witchhouse

Cool Russian Witchhouse with female vocals and a catchy beat. Has elements of Crystal Castles in some songs (angry fem vocals), but overall pretty good.

For the most part, it avoids the "someone shouting across the room at microwaved gameboy" vibe I've seen Crystal Castles accused of in Youtube comments with clearer vocals, and an emphasis on a clear beat.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Deeveaux (ᐳ Ξ Ξ V Ξ Λ Ц Ҳ) Mix Sets

Deeveaux successfully mixes a lively mix of dance, electronica, and synthpop with a vintage flavour.

All of the High Fructose Corn Syrup - Summer Jamz series are available for download via SoundCloud, including those by Deeveaux:

More volumes, tracks and mixes of his are available on Deeveaux's SoundCloud.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Recollections of Memory Tapes - Fallout

Via: Carpark Records writeup:
With the foundation of his musical life crumbling, Dayve Hawk was struggling to maintain a relationship with his project Memory Tapes. But through the difficulties, Hawk managed to keep this vital outlet going. Fallout / House On Fire, the new two-song digital single from Memory Tapes, exhibits Hawk’s still strong songwriting talents and an alternative way of working. After the artist’s last LP, Grace/Confusion, he saw several professional and personal relationships end, all in the space of a few months.

At this point, most of the structure built around the band since the first record,Seek Magic, had disintegrated.  The title of “Fallout” seems to suggest Memory Tapes’ situation around this time. The song itself sounds like an early meeting between post-punk and synth-pop, before anyone could polish out the feeling. The somewhat downcast mood of the music is reflected in the vocals, with Hawk singing, “all I want/ to be there, too.”
The tracks are completely live/hardware based, with no computer manipulation on the vocals. Considering the raw capture of these songs, they feel a little more like intimate demos than part of a traditional single. “I feel like it’s important to just do something and get it out,” Hawk says. “I’m trying to transition out of my hyper-introverted life.” 

I met Dayve once after a small gig he played in Toronto some years ago. After the concert, he awkwardly scrawled his name (using a ballpoint pen) cock-eyed across my Seek Magic LP, and got away from fans as fast as possible. I felt badly for him that he couldn't enjoy the adoration from people who've enjoyed his work so much over the years. His performance live was fantastic, but you could certainly see it was a struggle for him to reconcile being a musician in public with the introverted nature of his life. 

It's that intersection of introspection and the past that grants his music such a unique sound. Like his earlier side projects, Memory Tapes continues to trigger an emotional resonance for me with music keyed to specific times in my early childhood. In the case of "Fallout", it's the curious feeling I had on evenings spent alone in the early 90's, with half-heard music playing on a car radio outside. It also captures the odd wonder I felt while watching a taped copy of "E.T" in an empty house; the 
flicker of VHS scan lines on my family's old UHF-band television with a soft summer night breeze blowing though a window. Distant smells of a barbecue, and the sound of crickets outside: These are simple, but potent memories of a time that no longer exists - but I can relive them in a way though music.

I hadn't thought about these experiences for years, but Dayve Hawk's music brings them to the forefront of my memory. For that, I'm eternally grateful and hope he continues to make music in any form for years to come.


Update: Dayve released what sounds like a demo version of "Fallout" along with a few other new/unleased tracks in April:

I've done a quick cut/edit of the 1st track:

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Trevorsomething - Trevor Something Does Not Exist Synthwave Album

An amazing, amazing synthwave album by "Trevorsomething" titled "Trevor Somethign Does Not Exist".

In particular, a mashup/cover/original track called "Come back down", which mixes the beat and samples from New Order - Blue Monday with Animotion - Obsession phenomenally well. There's even some aspects of Gary Numan - Cars thrown in there for good measure.

I can't recommend this guys work enough. The full album is also available for FREE download on his BandCamp.

Track 3 contains a sample and interpolation of "Blue Monday" by New Order. Also contains samples from "Don't You Want Me" by The Human League, "Cars" by Gary Numan, "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell, "Da Da Da" by Trio, and "Close To The Edit" by Art of Noise. Track 6 is a remix of "The Inner Voice" by DJ Ten. Track 8 is a remix of "So Far Away" by Lazerhawk. Track 9 is a remix of "Hyperlips" by Com Truise. Track 10 is a remix of "Genesis" by Grimes. Track 12 is a remix of "Miami" by Jasper Byrne. Track 15 contains a sample from "What I Like About You" by The Romantics. Track 16 is a cover of "Enjoy The Silence" by Depeche Mode. 

NIGHTRIDE FM - GTAV Fake Radio station with DJ KRAVINSKY


Download link:

Via LE MATOS Facebook: 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Trevor Something - Fade Away

Trevor Something SoundCloud.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Telefon Tel Aviv - Lengthening Shadows (Unmixed) and beyond

A track from the post-Charles Cooper-era Telefon Tel Aviv I somehow missed hearing:

Telefon Tel Aviv - Lengthening Shadows (Unmixed)  

Lyrics were posted here:

My bones have wasted away
and I've withered like the weeds
It's gone, my life, it's gone

It's interesting the direction Telefon Tel Aviv's remaining half has moved in. I was disappointed with the various remixes that followed TTV's "Immolate Yourself" album / Cooper's passing -- they just lacked the ethereal gravity I loved in their 2009 release.

However, Joshua Eustis (the other half of the band) seems to have carved out an interesting future following that shakeup:

Case in point, Eustis' Darkwave-Industrial-Synthpop(?) project Sons of Magdalene, and his latest release "Move to Pain":

Amazing Aeroplane remixes

Sebastien Tellier - Kilometer (Aeroplane Italo 84 Remix)

Coyote - Too Hard (Aeroplane Remix)

Friendly Fires - Paris (Aeroplane Remix) ft. Au Revoir Simone

Friday, January 30, 2015

Slow remix of Zedd - Clarity by HAVEN

I really enjoyed the pitch-shifted, slowed version of Zedd - Clarity produced by HAVEN in their track "White Noise".

Until I Googled the lyrics, I had no idea what the original song was. It felt like a slowed down 80's ballad in the style of Rick Astley. The original source was anything but:

I'd mistaken the female pitch-shifted/slowed vocals for an emotional male singer instead. Interesting.  I might take a crack and mixing the original down myself sometime into an atmospheric witchhouse set.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

LIFELIKE - So Electric

Check out more of the French NuDisco pioneer LIFELIKE on SoundCloud.

Twin Peaks OST-inspired Tribute Album by online label Retro Promenade

While all the tracks are worth while, I'm a particular fan of the Vangelis-esk synth approach to the original Twin Peaks theme by Robert Parker:

Monday, January 12, 2015

Purity Ring - Begin Again

Purity Ring has a new track out. Their new single "Begin Again" is a great track: it has similar vocal melodies and patterns compared to their earlier releases, but with a deeper beat.

Also see: Previously writeup about Purity Ring.

Capsule - Japanese electronic duo

I came across a remix of an unlabeled remix on SoundCloud, I couldn't figure out if it was really chopped up English, or was actually Japanese:

It's Japanese, as it turns out - and greatly so. Capsule has catchy tunes abound - worth checking out for some non-European dancey-synthpop: Capsul Youtube playlist

(Original version)