In 2009, Neon Indian was part of a slew of artists that defined a new era of electronica based alternative rockers combining a love for hot, hazy, summery afternoons with chill electro beats and a love for the theremin. Their debut LP, Psychic Chasms, was the kind of fever dream that yearned for bright colors, a sea of Oakley Frogskins, and broken in Vans slip-on tennis shoes with soundscapes that blended Hipster coolness with fratboy party mode. In many ways, Neon Indian, and their chillwave brethren like Com Truise and Washed Out, were instrumental in the popularity of many similar tropicool, synth heavy acts on the current electronic circuit like Goldroom, Miami Horror, or Poolside.
And now, after 2011′s much heavier, 80′s shoegaze influenced Era Extraña, Neon Indian has released a taste of their newest album.
Titled “Annie,” Neon Indian’s spirit, Alan Palomo, searches for answers by looking to the past for consolation. What happens is the best kind of discovery: by embracing past pop beats like Lionel Richie’s “All Night Long” or the lighter side of Oingo Boingo, we get a newer edge from Palomo that samples elements of ska, Latin beat, and a tinge of reggae. These details, lovingly re-appropriated by the Neon Indian crew, fleshes out a pool party anthem with optimum levels of flanger, bass, and sex appeal. Bros be warned – this isn’t going to sound like the mainstream conception of tropical house, especially as it drives into 80′s synth revival at the 3-minute mark, but it sounds fabulous, fresh, and will go incredibly well with a piña colada.
Oh heeeeey, welcome back to Too Funk Tuesday! Hope you had a great long weekend and are ready to continue the party with some awesome tracks this week. Below are some of the finest jamz aggregated by yours truly, enjoy!
Kartell — Addicted
Parisian producer Kartell is a man with no boundaries as he transcends deep house with a disco-infused chill wave vibe that shouts “SUMMER 2015!!” I’m hooked to this track, pun intended, and its easy to tell why. With energetic synth bars, sexually-charged vocals and one helluva bassline, this is one song to get your summer night boogie on to.
The Magician — Together
Ok..Ok..I know you’re thinking that I post about The Magician way too much, which is likely true BUT he has the midas touch when it comes to dance music. “Together” is a sure-fire dancefloor breaker with an epic breakdown that is mind-blowing. The whole track, from beginning to end, spews energy and upbeat vibes. A must listen!
Le Youth — Touch (JckLNDN Remix)
This is five minutes of pure bliss. Sensual, deep and laid back, this track can make you feel warm and fuzzy as you dance the night away. JckLNDN is definitely one to watch in 2015 and the future, as he continues to bring a unique sound to the indie/deep house scene…breaking ground on what “future house” can really look like. Not to mention his set at U Hall was unbelievable and I’m still highly impressed. This mix is vivid example why.
Motez — Tryna Shake It
If you’ve made this far into TFT, then I know you’re ready for some seriously off-the-wall funk. If you’re a fan of Flash on Florida Ave, then this is the track for you as it could make that place explode. Australian sensation Motez brings one super freaky, experimental sound that has a sweet, soothing melody which is the seemingly destroyed by a deep, jaw-jarring breakdown that could rip the sub out of the woofer. Genius!
MIX OF THE WEEK — SNAKEHIPS on Diplo & Friends
If you’re a fan of hip hop meshed with dance music, then you’re set for the next hour with this mix. When done properly, this combination of genres can be utterly fantastic — a seeming cosmic clash of premiere production, Snakehips brings the heat for Diplo. Unfortunately, there is no tracklist but there were several “OMG” moments throughout this set that made it truly superb. Take the time and give it a go, it’ll surprise you how good this sounds.
Back again…with more tracks and more funk. Too Funk Tuesday is an eclectic mix similar to an Utz party pack. Enjoy!
Childish Gambino — Sober (LeMarquis Cover)
First, LeMarquis is amazing — anytime I come across a new track of his, it’s usually a must listen. Second, HE SINGS THIS SONG. It’s got a cosmic feel that incorporates groovy bass kicks and out-of-this-world synths that perfectly match the subtle, filtered vocals.
Marvin Gaye – Ain’t That Peculiar (Beshken Remix)
So fine, so fine. Sensual in a way that only Marvin Gaye could provide, hopped on a modern-day, bass-jacking experimental house vibe. This track has massive breakdowns interspered with other-world synth bars that reimagine what disco could look like in a couple years.
3 Monkeyzz – Keep My Light
Yay for Nu Disco! If you’re in love with chilled-out, french touch, like me, then this is the song for you. Filtered vocals on an energetic BPM that could make your shoulders shake any day of the week. The soul vocal is perfectly accompanied by an upbeat, feel-good melody that is made for the summer!
Arches feat. Karen Harding – New Love (Kokiri Remix)
I’m in love with the original, but Kokiri deserves the recognition for this superb remix. It brings a power-packed bassline and an extremely sexy saxophone that makes this once dancefloor shaker into a true, breakout banger.
MIX OF THE WEEK: The Magician — Magic Tape 52
52 mixes later and he still makes my heart flutter. Please enjoy this magical baby maker. No tracklist though :(
Beshken doesn’t mess around. Positivity flows through his incomparable soundscapes like water comes out of a tap and while many of his indie/future bass peers strike a common path, the Santa Monica based producer goes out of his way to venture into the woods without a map. This mentality strikes a chord as each remix and original he’s released to date has had a magnetic quality based on the element of surprise; a trait often seen from his choices to suddenly drop into detours that sample from an eclectic array of sub genres.
His newest remix, a hang-gliding, carefree take on Marvin Gaye’s “Ain’t That Peculiar,” is a triumph that punctures and blips as much as the floating synths raise the track much like yeast rises in freshly baked bread. The remix is soft and pillowy allowing listeners to allow themselves to feel warm and cozy as the ambient pads envelop the interstitial space between dreams and reality. It’s as chill as summer vibes go, perfecting the fine balance between indie electronica and fratboy house, and it pairs well with a mojito. Surprising, lusty, and spirited, Beshken’s version of “Ain’t That Peculiar” goes above and beyond straight for the clouds.
You can stream the track below and visit Beshken’s SoundCloud page for a free download.
A proper disco edit is hard to come by these days in the mainstream circles of the dance music community which is why Norwegian producer Todd Terje is a godsend. With many notable edits in his repertoire that range from Chaka Khan and the Bee Gees to more contemporary artists like Lindstrøm in addition to his wildly monumental LP It’s Album Time from last year, Terje is the kind of producer that is firmly rooted in music from the past that spirals and traverses into winding, spaced out paths. For him, it’s all about the journey.
His take on Jaga Jazzist‘s “Oban,” which is out ahead of the release of their Starfire LP due in June on London’s Ninja Tune, is the kind of rush of blood to the head that Terje fans would expect from him. But where this edit differs from past work is the finesse applied to the latter portion of the track is it ventures further into the rabbit hole into a breakbeat, electronica fueled bender; a move, no doubt, taken from his experiences working on It’s Album Time. What results is something similar to Daft Punk’s “Giorgio By Moroder” off their Random Access Memories album as it seems to drive through multiple periods of dance music in the attempt to create an audio-erotic odyssey that masterfully stimulates the senses. This is the kind of diversion only Todd Terje could produce and for that he deserves a standing ovation.
Listen to Todd Terje’s remix of “Oban” below and look out for Jaga Jazzist’s album, Starfire, due for release in June via Ninja Tune.