Amazing Torontonian SynthPop outfit Parallels are back after quite a hiatus. Things have been quite on the Parallels front since their sophomore album XII in 2012 and we feared we’d seen the last of them. But fear not, they’ve just announced that they are hard at work on their third studio record and in the meantime you should check out their new cover of New Order’s Age Of Consent.
It’s a pretty flat out cover with a raw garage feel. It’s nice to hear Holly back in action with some sweet synths. If we’re honest we don’t think the guitar does a good job of standing in for Hooky’s classic bass sound and it’s a bit overpowering in the mix. We’re hoping for a lot less of that on the new original material, but it does give this cover a raw, live feel. That aside it’s an energetic and driving cover of a song we all love and anything that lays the path for Parallels return is awesome by us.
We’ve been itching all week to drop this one. A true meeting of genius. Two of London’s finest SynthPop outfits. The epic and enigmatic Monarchy and our favourite Capital based Frenchmen The Penelopes together on one track. The Penelopes’ have stepped up to the plate to serve up this fantastic reMix of Monarchy’s single of earlier this year, Dancing In The Corner. Here we have the end result of four of the most talented people working in electronic Pop music in one six minute bite; and boy, it does not disappoint.
The Penelopes hit the ground running with the rapid fire arpeggio that the track is driven by. Whipping up some big room sounds, the Parisian Londoner’s delver an almost EBM take on hands-in-the-air euphoria with a twisted web of musical DNA that takes in everything from Enola Gay, through 90s Trance, French Electro to contemporary Tropical tinged House in one powerhouse melting pot that Ra’s vocals glide over like silk. This is one big tune!
♫ Monarchy-Dancing In The Corner (The Penelopes reMix)
Rex The Dog’s new single, Sicko, finally turned up on 12”. So we’re happy. The single is out now on Kompakt and should be a must listen for anyone who a fan of synthesizer music.
Rex and Jake have put together this awesome video for the track. Part music clip, part live studio performance and part demonstration of Jake’s DIY RTD-001 modular synth that Sicko is played on; it’s all synth porn.
Having scored a UK number one single with King, London ElectroPoppers Years & Years can;t really be called up-and-coming or hotly tipped anymore. They have pretty much delivered what was expected of them with a storming round of festival shows last year and a string of acclaimed singles (including said #1). Earlier than we had expected, the band have just announced the forthcoming release of their début album. To be titled Communion, the LP is due to drop in June’ check out the first new album track, Worship.
Worship continues with Years & Years’ trend for mixing up ElectroPop and Indie-Electro with R&B tinged vocals from singer Olly Alexander. The track rolls on skippy beats and pseudo-Tropical keys that set a laid back, but dancefloor friendly mood for the intensely passionate track. It’s heartfelt dancy ElectroPop at it’s finest.
Next up on Crosstown Rebels is the new single from label head honcho Damian Lazarus. We’ve never really been too sure who The Ancient Moons are, but the track features the soulful vocals of new LA based singer Moses Sumney. Having already ranked up the honour of being one of Pete Tong’s Essential New Tunes, Vermillion is due out next month. Give it a listen below.
Kicking off in tribal fashion Vermillion is soon dousing you ears in a warm House groove. There’s an interesting combination of world percussion and twisting arpeggios that keep the tune high energy in contrast to Sumney’s breezy, laid back vocals. This is hypnotic House pulled into a Poppier arena, and it really works.
♫ Damian Lazarus & The Ancient Moons (Feat. Moses Sumney) – Vermillion
Damian Lazarus & The Ancient Moons’ Vermillion is released 27th April.
Parisian Horizontal Discomeister Zimmer is back with a brand new track. Saturday Love has the French producer teaming up with fellow Parisian DJ and Producer Pallace and enlisting Boston based singer Aria Lanelle for vocal duties. It’s his first tune since last summer’s Sensify Me and it sees Zimmer side-stepping his normal smooth groove and wearing his love of Piano House on his sleeve.
Saturday Love is warm as hell. Zimmer put’s his own Tropical twist on a Chicago House sound, complimenting the deep warehouse bass and hammerfall piano hooks with the ubiquitous poolside Disco vibe having island keys shoulder to shoulder with skippy 909 drums and vintage House synths. Lanelle’s playful vocals tie the track together nicely. Summertime stuff!
Having collaborated with the likes of Bremnar and Sammy Banannas, New York based House singer/songwriter Shyvonne is gearing up for the release of her début EP. The release was co-produced with Chuck Wild and sees her taking on a UK Deep House sound whilst keeping a classic late 80s/early 90s House vibe. Listen up.
Give Into Love is smooth and slinky with a comfortable House groove. Paying respects to the history of House, from Chicago through UK Bass, Shyvonne delivers a soulful performance and has a classic voice that when paired with Chuck Wild’s production mixing both the retro and the new presents a timeless dance music sound.
MiGHty mOUse and Matt Van Schie are back in their Du Tonc guise with the eagerly awaited follow up to January’s Every Song. Written on the radio in the US, Animals marks the start of the journey toward the duo’s début album, of which they are putting the finishing touched to right now. These guys have made a big impact on the Nu-Disco and Indie-Electro scenes since the start of their collaboration back in 2013 and we are pretty pleased they are going the album route (it’s a format we, unlike a lot of people, feel is still very important. It;s gonna’ be a big year for Du Tonc.
Animals serves up generous helpings of, what is now, Du Tonc’s trademark sound; blissful Topical-tinged Indie-Electro with a solid Disco backing. Blissful it may be, but don’t mistake it for shallow. Animals, as with the rest of Du Tonc’s output, is wildly more cerebral than it’s contemporaries, with Matt Van Schie giving an emotional and intelligent performance over a intricately crafted combination of summery ElectroPop and retro-futuristic Cosmic Disco. As ever, Du Tonc deliver something for both the head and the feet.
One of our favourite French SynthPop duos, Jupiter, are back after a couple of year’s hiatus. they’ve just announced the impending release of their second album; Bandana Republic. The follow up to 2012’s incredibly well received Juicy Lucy, Bandana Republic is due to drop in May. Recorded between Paris and Los Angeles, the album is informed by a Californian road trip vibe that injects some interesting new 70s influences into Jupiter’s Parisian DiscoPop. Check out the first hint of what’s to come, the track Do It.
From the offset, Do It hits you with thick, bassy synths and an irresistible hook (if your head doesn’t start immediately nodding you may want to see a doctor about that neck problem you have!). Any doubts that Jupiter couldn’t recreate the bottled lightning of Juicy Lucy are rapidly swept away; Do It is as good a DiscoPop track as you could ask for. Steady beats, funky apreggios, heavy synth bass and Amélie sounding as sweet and catchy as ever. Ladies and gentlemen, Jupiter are back.
Up and coming British producer Mark Dobson, A.K.A. Ambassadeurs, started his adventure in electronic music production with OctaMED on the Amiga; this immediately endears him to us as we are old school MED fans. Fast forward to the present day and he’s been slowly but surely making a name for himself with a succession of well received reMixes and steady touring. He’s just released his new EP, Can’t You See?, as a Beatport exclusive and we can give the title track a listen right now.
Can’t You See? neatly bridges the gap between dreamy Chillwave atmospherics and bassy, Future R&B styled UK Deep House. Ambassadeurs lays on waves of lush Synths and haunting samples over a shuffling beat. For such a spacious track, Can’t You See? is pretty upbeat as Ambassadeurs stabs and a twisting lead line into a frenzy as the song progresses. There’s even a little Dub in the mix too. A complex and intricately crafted epic.