Blisspop Presents: Feedback Friday – April 19th, 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: Alex Rubenstein, Kristina Westernik, Will Creason, Marshall Stukes and Aeron Premo. This week’s music includes tracks by Hatchie, anz, Tame Impala, Le Dom, and Daniel Deluxe.

 


 

Hatchie – “Stay With Me”

 

 

Kristina Dandridge – This breezy, new wave, pop electro song is not bad! I like the guitar tones which are a throwback new wave sound akin to Slowdive or My Bloody Valentine. I’m excited to listen to Hatchie’s new EP coming out this spring. (7.5/10)

 

Will Creason – Solid production here, a really pleasant mixdown and great balance. The hollow sounding drum loop and the dream pop wall of sound give me a distinct 90s vibe, something I hope is explored more in the coming years. I really like that the crescendo is teased out to the point where it feels like it may never arrive. Nice one. (7/10)

 

Aeron Premo – This track has been on repeat for me since its release; it is such a classy and euphoric slice of dream pop. The chord progressions are top notch, and the synth and guitar tones are sublime. What really takes “Stay With Me” to the next level is when the next layer of drums kick in around 2:50 and enhance those tones even more. You just want to jump up and down and dance nonstop. Hatchie’s debut is one of my anticipated new releases this year, and this track is a strong reason why. (10/10)

 

Marshall Stukes – I got a tad bored with the drums in the first part of the song, but I enjoyed them a bit better when they opened up in the second half. I really liked the pads and synth action, but again, the second half was much better. I wish there was a bit more change in the riffs, but it’s still a good song, overall. (7.5/10)

 

Alex Rubenstein – This is not a bad slice of pop music from Hatchie. It honestly reminds me of HAIM-meets-Tame Impala. She has a nice voice, and the instrumental is definitely danceable, but the track doesn’t really grab you and make you feel anything. (6/10)

 

 

Tame Impala – “Borderline”

 

 

Kristina Dandridge – The hype is real! I’ve been a fan of Tame Impala since 2011, so you’re not going to get a bad review from my end. You can tell Kevin Parker’s musicality is evolving and maturing from a psych rock sentiment to a more pop, R&B influenced vibe. My favorite tone is that random pan flute sample – very clever! Is this my favorite song ever? Not yet, but it’s certainly growing on me. I wish that it was less lyrically heavy, leaving space for an instrumental breakdown. (8.5/10)

 

Will Creason – As someone who didn’t listen to Tame Impala’s psych rock phase, I 100% do not understand how indie fans listen to them now. Kevin Parker sounds like Adam Levine singing over a mid-career MGMT throwaway. Tame Impala is one of those acts that genuinely makes me feel like everyone is crazy except me. Help! (2/10)

 

Aeron Premo – Like Hatchie, Tame Impala provides us with a another dose of Aussie dream pop. While this song has more of a classic pop structure than his past work, Kevin Parker hasn’t lost any of the production magic that has made Tame Impala such a wonderful act. I love the little flourishes that float throughout (pan flute – yes!), and the song has a rolling and pleasant groove. While I do like “Patience” a tad bit better out of the new tunes, Kevin is on a wonderful roll here – can’t wait for the new record! (10/10)

 

Marshall Stukes – If you don’t like Tame Impala in some shape or form, we can’t be friends. Everything about this song is perfect. I can’t think of one thing that I would change or critique. The vibe is all there, carried in a smooth bassline, great percussions and top notch production. (10/10)

 

Alex Rubenstein – There’s no denying that Kevin Parker is talented and has a lot of appeal to a lot of people, yet there is something lacking here for me. The disco influence is a nice touch, but “Borderline” still fails to really distinguish itself from a lot of Tame Impala’s other tunes. It’s less psych-influenced, sure, but this one seems to just drone on too much. (5/10)

 

 

anz – “no harm”

 

 

Kristina Dandridge – I love that synth flourish that kicks off this track. The rezzy synth stabs are powerful and command my attention. When the beats kick in, I am especially hooked! I also appreciate that there is space for different instruments to weave their way through the track and then effortlessly drop out, leaving room for variation on the main musical themes. (8/10)

 

Will Creason – I listened to this blindly because it was on Finn’s label, 2 B Real, and this opening track completely blew my head off. A progressive, upbeat, fun production that bubbles with one of the year’s catchiest synth riffs over a spry electro / freestyle beat. It’s one of those rare tracks that feels both modern and vintage and potentially has huge crossover appeal across genres. (9/10)

 

Aeron Premo – This track has some seriously awesome synth work throughout. Those bass tones are just amazing! There is a really cool early 80s meets early 90s feel, the production is incredibly crisp and I love how the energy level stays constant from beginning to end. ANZ really has a winner on her hands here with “no harm.” (10/10)

 

Marshall Stukes – While I did enjoy the intro and the main section of this track, the last minute is what did it for me. The transitions between each part, funky, house and dark, were effortless and fit right in. (8/10)

 

Alex Rubenstein – We’ve got a slapper on our hands, folks. The synths remind me of Sonic the Hedgehog, leading me to finally want to drop my mixtape “The Emerald Chill Zone.” The last third of this track takes a darker turn but still keeps things funky. This track combines almost everything that’s great about the UK electronic continuum, from hardcore to funky to garage. Before I even listened I knew this would be a heater for the simple fact it was being put out on Finn’s label, 2 B Real. (9/10)

 

 

Le Dom – “13 Layers of Stone”

 

 

Kristina Dandridge – If I was a DJ (which I am most certainly not) I’d mix in this banger to wake up the crowd a bit. It reminds me of the sound design from Unreal Tournament, that first person shooter game. This is what I imagine rounds of alien, machine gun fire could sound like. My only gripe is the rise at 2:49 was a tad lackluster for my taste; I was hoping for more of a drop. But otherwise, this is a unique and eclectic composition worth a listen. (6.5/10)

 

Will Creason – Yes! A superb slice of Bérite Club. We have Teki Latex to thank for keeping these angular drum tracks in vogue in France. “13 Layers” is a total mind-melter: dense rhythms and surprise rhythmic diversions that spin out, sending fragments to reform and roll out over again. More. Of. This. Please! (9/10)

 

Aeron Premo – Listening to this track, I feel like I am trapped at a target range. It belongs on the same military movie soundtrack that the Paula Temple track from two weeks back should be on. (1/10)

 

Marshall Stukes – I really wish I could get into this track. All of the elements are there for me. It’s heavy, it has great production and attention to detail, it has great sound design and texture. But the part of me that is normally triggered by tracks like this one, was quiet. (6/10)

 

Alex Rubenstein – It’s a delicate line to be able to make a track that’s equal parts ear-splittingly brutal and danceable, yet Le Dom delivers just that with his latest, “13 Layers of Stone.” The jagged and percussive rhythmic elements play off the hi-def sound design for a truly thrilling ride. Drop this track in the club and initiate survival of the fittest. (8/10)

 

 

Daniel Deluxe – “Overseer”

 

 

Kristina Dandridge – This music reminds me slightly of Le Castle Vania or Gesaffelstein; it sounds like some sort of variation on retro wave, if that’s your vibe. For me, I can dig it in smaller doses, but you still can’t deny the power of the arpeggiation or the punchy, four-on-the-floor, kick-snare combo. (7.75/10)

 

Will Creason – This is a solid recreation of Ed Banger’s blog house peak. There isn’t anything bad about the production, everything here sits nicely, but I do get the sense that we’ve heard this style quite a bit already. That said, if this was in a video game it’d put you right in the zone. (5/10)

 

Aeron Premo – I am feeling a bit of a Carpenter Brut vibe here with the same, slightly hard charging drums and in your face synths. I do like the synthwave-y break that starts around 0:55, as it provides a nice beginning of a buildup. I am not completely sold on this track; it is a bit too much on the hard side for me but listening to it a couple of more times, it does prove that it has the potential to be a grower. (5.5/10)

 

Marshall Stukes – This is a great track for someone to get into the darker side of the X-wave subgenres. It’s full of energy, it’s not overly melancholic and it still has some poppy synth parts. I wish the mix and master were better as I wanted the track to be a bit brighter to give more emphasis to the lead. The 808 in the middle of the track was out of left field and was not needed. The drop was great too, but again, I think it was held back with the mix. (8/10)

Alex Rubenstein – If Justice was responsible for the Stranger Things soundtrack then you’d have Daniel Deluxe’s, “Overseer.” The energy remains high, and the synth work is glossy and captivating. My only gripe is that the track just kind of ends with no real resolution to it. (7/10)

 


 

The Results:

 

anz – “no harm” – 8.8/10

Hatchie – “Stay With Me” – 7.6/10

Tame Impala – “Borderline” – 7.1/10

Daniel Deluxe – “Overseer” – 6.7/10

Le Dom – “13 Layers of Stone” – 6.1/10

 

 

 

 



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