Hometown house heroes DJ Meegs and Philco have teamed up to bring us a monthly mix series aptly named “Meegsco”. This is the first one of hopefully many to come and it goes deep. They start it out with an anthem from Carl Craig and keep the tribal vibe going with the following track, “Ixchel” by Doza. The rest of the mix is filled with top quality tracks from names such as Pezzner, Dan Beaumont, and plenty more. Needless to say, all of these were strung together seamlessly, providing you with a nice one-hour journey through the world of underground house and techno.
“I see you baby / Shaking that ass.” This lyric from 90′s dance superstars Groove Armada’s “I See You Baby,” out at a time when the U.K. was producing crossover big beat heaters left and right, is one of the most recognizable lines in dance music. Straight to the point, it’s a jab to get a crowd moving everything below the waistline on the dancefloor and the reason it’s had staying power is because it works.
DMV native Henri Charuau, known as the DJ and producer Riffa, is the kind of rave-minded, young blood producer who understands the weight and gravitas of such a legacy. Using the sample in his latest original, “Graffiti,” Riffa contextualizes grime and bass with wonky idiosyncrasies updating the Groove Armada ear worm into a banger worthy of Dirtybird’s catalog. Classing it up a level above standard G-house fare, the track understands the ‘less is more’ rule laying down a thick layer of kick, hi-hats, and snare which move like clockwork allowing the edit to revel in its beautiful simplicity.
Right now it’s available as a free download on SoundCloud. Listen to “Graffiti” by Riffa below.
Northern Virginia based artist Psyberscenic (a.k.a. Ross McGuire) recently put out The Scrying Orb LP. Intricately melodic and appropriately experimental, The Scrying Orb is a psychedelic work of art. When I asked Ross the story behind his new Psyberscenic moniker, he told me that ‘Psyber’ is a play on ‘cyber’ (in addition to making music digitally, Ross is a computer science student), ‘scenic’ refers to the visual and more leisurely take on life, and ‘psy’ also refers to ‘pyschedelic,’ the genre. Ross elaborates:
“… an emphasis on the psychedelic way of creating a leisurely scenic route through experience as crafted via digital means.”
The LP opens with “Portals,” a characteristically Psyberscenic track that at certain points brings to mind a holiday melody on acid. From “Portals,” Ross takes us on a journey through his intriguing, electronica creation. The LP features high energy tracks such as “Somatose” and mellower productions like “Nebulous.” My top picks are “Portals” and “Witches, Ghosts, n’ Goblins,” but other listeners may very well find different favorites. Listen to The Scrying Orb here:
Whoa – there’s fire emanating from Chris Kennedy’s studio. The Blisspop member and DMV (DC-Maryland-Virginia) based DJ/Producer released a fierce new track within the past 24 hours that samples Black Rob’s “Whoa.” While browsing through my Soundcloud stream earlier this evening, I gave “Whoa” a cursory listen, and even then Chris’ music production prowess was evident. Chris has strong house music sensibilities, leaning towards the techier end of the spectrum. Chris demonstrates a good deal of restraint in “Whoa” – the track doesn’t have a heavy drop at any point. Even after the Amen break at the end of the breakdown, Chris stays true to house music and holds off. Chris: your adroit use of percussion and sound design in addition to the restraint you display in “Whoa” has earned you a spot among DC’s top producers – well done. Listen to Chris Kennedy’s “Whoa:”
Fucking pop music. Some of it is great, some of it not so much. Fortunately for our ears, Kids Want Techno understand the difference between ‘pop for pop’s sake’ and ‘pop that’s executed well.’
Their recent remix, while it skews more mainstream than what’s typically covered on Blisspop, isn’t one to overlook. An uplifting, progressive house take on Jessi Malay’s “Summer Love,” it looks like the DMV based tastemakers decided to look at what makes Top 40 work and used that as a backbone for their remix which feels like the best parts of Calvin Harris and the beachy guitar notes from Robin Schulz mixed with the fabulous parts of Carly Rae Jepsen’s 2015 LP Emotion. The vocals are sugary sweet and bubbly, the synth melodies are colossal, and the builds are effective giving the remix a level of sheen that elevates it above traditional Top 40 fodder. It’s cute. It’s happy. But let’s be clear – it’s not stupid.
Listen to Kids Want Techno’s remix of “Summer Love” below.