Blisspop Presents: Feedback Friday – February 15, 2019

Here at Blisspop, we aim to show our audience who’s making their mark upon electronic music culture today. We sort through the good and the bad, bringing you the latest sounds. We’re back at it again with the latest edition of our series, Feedback Friday. This edition features our contributors: Kristina Dandridge, Alvaro Hernandez, Justin Barini-Rivers, Connor McInerney and Marshall Stukes. This week’s music includes tracks by Mercer, The Chemical Brothers, YAYAYA, Throwing Snow, and Mikron.


 

MERCER “Your Love” (Original Mix)

 

Kristina Dandridge – This is a solid addition to one’s dance party mixes due to the infectious house music grooves. But beware! The vocal sample repeats a lot so I would definitely mix in and out of this track relatively quickly. (6/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – Mercer has laid us with a lovely house tune (disco to house is one of my favorite genres). The song overall is solid and the production clean. The bass and how it plays with the guitar line is dope. I was hoping for more vocal edits and maybe some more drum variations. That could just be me as I make music like this occasionally. In general, I love the vibe and this will definitely be in my disco to house sets. (8/10)

Alvaro Hernandez – The last time I heard music from MERCER, electro house was still the prevalent sound in the big clubs. From the jump, I was surprised to hear a funky guitar loop that led me straight to a heavy bassline that can fit perfectly in any house or Nu Disco set. A song ready to get you in the mood for the upcoming rooftop season! (7.5/10)

Marshall Stukes – This is a track that will fit into neo-disco sets perfectly. It has a funky bassline and a great use of a sample that definitely got me moving. While the song is relatively normal in length, I felt it was a tad drawn out. Maybe the song would benefit from a key change or a more frequent use of the sample in the latter half of the song. However, these gripes would be minor on the dance floor, which this song is made for. (8/10)

Connor McInerney – Can you dig it? I can get down with the funky backbone in “Your Love”  and its staccato usage of vintage samples – it endows the track with a really classic energy that’s emblematic of the awesome disco revivalist period we’re living in. MERCER does fall a bit short of crafting something fully engaging however, as the track lacks a necessary third act or additional element of variation to cement this track as an absolute banger. No denying it slaps though. (6.5/10)

 

The Chemical Brothers “Got To Keep On”

 

Kristina Dandridge – Have you seen the music video for this?! After watching the video, I feel the need to brush up on my disco dance steps. There’s a spirited ambiance to this track which lends itself to a dance off! (10/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – I grew up listening to The Chemical Brothers and was really into their early music. The sound design in this song is smooth and the mix feels like a disco song. I will say, there is a build towards the end that is so cool with some glitchy distorted sounds and looped vocals. Once you get dropped off that world it’s right back into Studio 54. This song is the perfect vibe for these cold Washington D.C. nights. (7.5/10)

Alvaro Hernandez – A euphoric return from The Brothers, complete with a gnarly groove and that classic Chemical sound! (9/10)

Marshall Stukes – While certainly groovy, half of this song works for me and half of it doesn’t. The production is great. The bells, bass, and the vocal accents all work well. To me, the middle of the song takes away from the rest of it. (7/10)

Connor McInerney – It’s a consistent, palpably energetic slow build on “Got To Keep On” – an exercise in restraint by The Chemical Brothers to not immediately transition the “potential energy” of their sample-laden build into something more kinetic until the the track’s last minute and a half. When it does switch up, however, we’re treated to an explosive conclusion that’s well worth the wait. Leave it to the veterans to show how it’s done. (8.5/10)

 

Daedalus & Goodnight Cody “Pull Through” (YAYAYA Remix)

 

Kristina Dandridge – I am a sucker for the virtuosic bass solo that drops in the first half of the track! I also appreciate the style of the producer with his aggressive shuffle dance beat style. The soaring synth lead rounds out the track and effectively showcases impeccable keyboard technique. (9/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – The guitars are awesome and deep. They offer me so much feeling and emotion with such a simple idea. The song continues to build into a monster tune. Big drums and pumping warm sub basses are all I want. I get a little lost at the break with the fast paced guitar. I am not against it and I am sure it worked for someone else. The drum programming on this tune is wild and deserves recognition on it’s own. The fills and glitches are powerful and creative. I almost want the song to be longer, but it’s honestly the perfect length – it’s more just wanting something I can’t have. (8.5/10)

Alvaro Hernandez – I’m not too familiar with the Daedalus sound, but the mesmerizing guitar and uptempo percussion makes this an interesting clash of sounds that are both chill and rocking at the same time. (7/10)

Marshall Stukes – The intro is a nice build up to the main section of the song. The bass solo was something that I was not expecting, but it works well to transition to the next part of the song, as well as setting up the next solo. My only gripe is that the shaker sounds a bit weird to me. (8/10)

Connor McInerney – Some serious bass noodling on this one. I dig the multifaceted approach YAYAYA took on this remix: to never get buried in the weeds and rely on a constantly shifting energy, an employ of drum heavy breakbeats and wandering synth segues, then coalescing the whole thing into a wild-yet-mellow ride. If anything the only fault with this track is it could be much longer, provided YAYAYA gave more space for the various instrumental parts to “solo” more prior to the “Pull Through’s” untimely end. (7.5/10)

 

Mikron “Locus Reave”

 

Kristina Dandridge – Brace yourself for chilled out Burial vibes with the onset of this instrumental track! I definitely enjoy when the track opens up with punchy and bell-like percussion. If I could add anything more to this track, I’d wish for a melodic top line element, such as vocals, to really grab my attention and round out the arrangement. (6/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – This is a dreamy tune. The reverbs on the arpeggios are lovely and once the bass begins to sneak in with the drums this song is really banging the floor. The drums are dope and I love the bits of swing and mini fills with the high percussion. Melodically, this song is doing some work too; the arp is rolling all over the place providing us with some lovely movements. The ethereal section towards the end is one of my favorite parts. It really offers a nice break that allows me to reset and get ready for more drums. Love the lush synths in this track – definitely worth a listen just for the sound design. (7/10)

Alvaro Hernandez – A very mysterious vibe emanates from the synth in the background at the start, giving you the impression of a dark beat to follow. “Locus Reave” is an industrial cut that pushes past the mystery tone and into a breakdown of cosmic patterns that sound quite nice. (8/10)

Marshall Stukes – I like the vibe this song is going for, but the kick is a bit too punchy for me. It’s a good song with nice movement in the bass synth and a pretty cool ambient section, but it doesn’t do anything else that blows me away. (7/10)

Connor McInerney – Mikron’s style of understated, industrial techno is my ride or die – it’s the sort of production that is wholly atmospheric, a microcosm of world building I could see myself getting lost in. “Locus Reave” is no exception (from their recently released Severance) in the sense that the whole track is a ramp that never feels too foreign or retrofuturistic. Their soundscapes are tactile, engaging and only very slightly mysterious, crafting something that is both familiar and exciting. It’s the type of electronic music that’s hard to describe but better when viscerally consumed. (9/10)

 

Throwing Snow “Rheged”

 

Kristina Dandridge – Bonobo teased this as a featured track on his new Fabric London mix series. This is a real banger from start to finish! If you’re interested in Bonobo’s full mix, it drops officially on February 22nd on dig, CD and x2 vinyl LP. Get it here: fabric.lnk.to/fabricpresentsbonobo (10/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – I love Throwing Snow and this track is truly a sneaky banger; it feels effortless. At about a minute in the drums and main ideas begin to roll through. I love this tune because the sound design and arrangement work as one unit to give a huge mix. I can hear the textures on the 808 and kick mixing together. The hi hats are beautifully placed and laid in the mix so I can experience them at the full potential. This tune is fire, but the mix that pushed it out to us is also lovely. (9/10)

Alvaro Hernandez – Apart from the rigid bass thump fueling the groove throughout the song, I felt as though there was something missing melodically. Nevertheless, an interesting addition to Bonobo’s upcoming Fabric mix. (6/10)

Marshall Stukes – I like the synth and the way it’s timing is changed through the song, and I like the drums and the percussion elements used but both of them together doesn’t quite fit. I can’t seem to find the right vibe with this track as I slightly get taken out of it when the kick drum comes in. (6.5/10)

Connor McInerney – That eerie flute sample though… Yeah, “Rheged” has good bones, but I feel like some parts (namely the low-end bass parts that separate sections of “action) were missed opportunities for additional improvisation. There is a moment of redemption when Throwing Snow finally uses an arpeggio for the flute lead towards the track’s conclusion to build energy, however. Overall, a solid effort. (7/10)

 


 

The Results:

The Chemical Brothers – “Got To Keep On” – 8.4/10

Daedalus & Goodnight Cody – “Pull Through” (YAYAYA Remix) – 8/10

Throwing Snow – “Rheged” – 7.7/10

Mikron – “Locus Reave” – 7.4/10

Mercer – “Your Love” -7.2 /10

 



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