[Audio] Ronika reMixes The Penelopes’ ‘Time To Shine’

 

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London based French duo The Penelopes recent single Time To Shine, a record that we called “Massive” with all it’s moody bombast and stadium ElectroPop leaning, is about to get a bit Massive-er. Fresh from releasing one of the greatest albums of all time, Boogie juggernaut Ronika has contributed to the Time to Shine reMix package with this timeless House mix.

Chicago meets Acid meets Rave in this highly kinetic four and a half minutes. Ronika really keeps the energy going with undulating purcussion and a plethora of classic sounds. At it’s hart a Piano House tune, Ronika brings a load of early 90s elements to the, from the Rave keys to the use of the vocals as samples. This should really be played extremely loud in a field full of revellers, but through your headphones on a sunny day it’ll put just as big a grin on your face.

♫ The Penelopes – Time To Shine (Ronika reMix)

The Penelopes’ Time To Shine is out now.

Buy The Penelopes’ music from:

[Audio] Ronika’s ‘Selectadisc’ album

 

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Ronika will always kinda’ be ‘the one that got away’ for us. After appearing on electronic rumors volume 1, the album that made us decide to launch a record label, we would have given our right arm to sign Ronika, we just never found an angle. Not only is she an incredibly talented songwriter, performer and producer (having been a professional sound engineer in her pre-Pop star life), but with her own releases via her label Record Shop, a shrewd businesswoman too. Honestly, we could never think of anything we could offer her that she couldn’t already do amazingly well herself. If only we’d had loads of money back then.

After spending the past couple of years releasing some of the finest singles in the country, Ronika is finally ready to drop her début album; Selectadisc. Named after legendary record Nottingham record shop (which is lucky, if we released an album based on our childhood crate digging haunt it would be called ‘Tony’s’, which doesn’t have the same ring to it.), the LP has already been a big part of our life since late last year (at this point I’m going to have to drop the blog ‘we’).

Late last year my dad died. Shit happens, it was pretty dark. Certain sections of the music industry sent over their condolences and musical care packages, it was touching and appreciated. Topping off the outpouring of sympathy Ron send over a copy of the then-just-mastered and untitled Selectadisc. Now, I’m not going to go all soap opera on you and say it made everything better. My dad had just died y’know. But it did do practically the impossible, take my mind of things for a while. And put a smile on my face. The album has been constantly play-listed ever since.

At this juncture, just before slipping back into the entirely more comfortable blog ‘we’, I’d like to point out that had Selectadisc been a bit shit none of that story would make sense. Luckily for all involved it’s not a bit shit, not even a tiny bit. If fact it’s fucking awesome, in every possible way and so far 2014’s best album (and looking unlikely to be beaten). Keep in mind that the likes of Tensnake and Chromeo have released records this year too and I swear that I am being as un-biased as humanly possible when I say that. Best album of the year.

So, to the music. As to be expected (almost) all the ‘hits’ are present and correct. Wiyoo, Forget Yourself, Paper Scissors Stone, Clock, Only Only, In The City and Rough ‘N’ Soothe are all here in newly recorded versions.Collected together here they present a timeline of Ronika’s journey as she weaves in and out of 80s Pop, Disco, Italo and Boogie; unleashing catchy hooks and infectious choruses as she travels. Only Automatic and Do Or Die from Ronika’s discography are missing, but seeing as they are making room for the new material we’ll excuse their absence.

The track we were most excited about hearing on Selectadisc was 1000 Nights. For a long time our live favourite; the tune doesn’t disappoint in studio form as Ronika puts one foot in the 80s Power Pop arena an delivers a huge cinematic epic. Like Bonnie Tyler meets Giorgio Moroder, 100 Nights is the hit single from an imaginary 80s movie soundtrack. There’ll be a ton of dry ice and wind machines in the video. It’s spot as our favourite of Selectadisc’s new material was usurped, though, by Video Collection. Video Collection reigns as one of the album’s standout tracks with it’s driving late 80s beat, punchy Italo bassline, sing-a-long chorus and sense of humour. We’re not sure if “built up my video collection, and now it’s good for nothing” is supposed to be a metaphor for life and emotional investment; but taken literally it pretty much describes our lives.

Album teaser Shell Shocked serves up it’s springy-bass laden soulful epicness, pairing Ron’s vocally sweeter side with some complex synth work, to offer a musically nostalgic TOTP moment amongst the Boogie. Selectadisc’s mid-point moment of cool comes in the form of Believe It, a laid back and involving slice of electronic Soul that finds Ron at her most Motown (vocally) over a shuffling late 80s groove, that serves as the calm before the Earthrise.

Earthrise treads similar bombastic territory to 1000 Nights, but adds a little B-Boy Electro to the Boogie with galloping hi-hats and a comfortable mixture of starlight synths and Disco licks sitting in-between the Robo beats and Ron’s passionate performance. Which makes for a nice contest with What’s In Your Bag?, a track that was our least favourite on first listen. Definitely a grower, our opinion of What’s In Your Bag? has gone from ‘filler’ to ‘work of pure genius’. Both the sunshine Pop vibe and the at-first-glace throwaway lyrics can seem alien on the record, but delving into the track revels a lyrical wit and 90s dance vibe that it is really hard not to love.

The other pre-album teaser Search Siren acts at the album’s spiritual epilogue. It’s enigmatic drama putting a full stop to proceedings with low key beats and one of the finest vocal performances on the album. We say ‘spiritual’ epilogue, because the album actually closes on Mixtape. A fun and funky tune, Mixtape feels a little out of place on Selectadisc but makes for a perfect encore and, in it’s own way, seems to sum up the experience of Selectadisc, only from the outside (it’s also definitive proof of the well known playground wisdom that ‘girls can’t make gun noises’).

So, to summarise (in case you haven’t been paying attention or have skipped to the end); buy this album. We guarantee it’ll either be your favourite record of the year, or in your top five. Ronika can write classic Pop songs with the best of them, but she’s so steeped in Disco, Italo and Boogie that every second of Selectadisc oozes compelling robotic Funk. That’s a combination that many try, but very very few ever master, and Ronika pulls it off better than anyone we can think of. Even Chromeo. So there.

Your summer starts right here.

–Edit– Apparently Mixtape isn’t on the final release of the album, so the world will be deprived of Ronika’s gun noises. Sadface.

♫ Ronika – Shell Shocked

♫ Ronika – Rough ‘N’ Soothe (Single Version)

♫ Ronika – In The City (Single Version)

♫ Ronika – Wiyoo (Single Version)

Ronika’s Selectadisc is due out 2nd June and can be pre-order on vinyl from the Record Shop shop here.

Buy Ronika’s music from:

[Audio] Ronika’s ‘Wiyoo’ reMixed by Jupiter

 

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Our relationship with her tune Wiyoo is almost as long our relationship with Ronika herself. Her second single; the track also appeared on electronic rumors volume 1, and then reMixed by Substatic on the cunningly titled electronic rumors Volume 1: The reMix EP, so you could say Wiyoo has been pretty influential in our journey from blog to label. Ass has been shaken to it on more than one occasion too.

In advance of the long awaited release of Ron’s début album, Selectadisc (review coming soon, possibly the most personal thing we’ve ever written), here come this brand new reMix of Wiyoo from French DiscoPop dynamic duo Jupiter. The Parisians drop the tempo slightly and deliver slab loads of thick synth funk with a playful, cheesy, Pop heart. Ron’s vocals glide over a bed of springy deep bass, airy analog stabs and an earworm of a lead hook. Mixing up French Disco with a little LA Funk vibe, Jupiter serve up a completely different take on the track.

♫ Ronika – Wiyoo (Jupiter reMix)

Ronika’s Selectadisc is due out 2nd June.

Buy Ronika’s music from:

[Mixtape] Ronika’s ‘Shut Up And Kiss Me Mixtape’

 

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Ronika – Shut Up And Kiss Me Mixtape = Who wants an hour and a half of Ronika’s handpicked? We all do, obviously. gearing up for the release of her début album, Selectadisc, next month; Ron drops some smashing tracks (including a fair few we’ve featured on these pages) so you know your in for a cavalcade of Boogie and Disco to set up your weekend.

Ronika – Shut Up And Kiss Me Mixtape

The tracklist:
01. The Subs (Feat. Colonel Abrahams) – Trapped
02. Club Nouveau – Jealousy
03. Nine Lives – Adagio
04. Kid Sister – You Ain’t Really Down
05. New Look – Janet
06. Fox The fox – Precious Little Diamond
07. Ronika – Shell Shocked
08. Justus Kohncke – Tell Me
09. Mild Peril – Galatine
10. Jessy Lanza – Keep Moving
11. Vivien Vee – Higher
12. Neptune Safari (Feat. Clara la San) – Morning Sun (Funk Le Blanc reMix)
13. Broke One – Lightheart
14. Matt Zo – Like It Used To Be
15. John Wizards – Lyongwe
16. Fingerman – Like 2 Baby
17. George Duke – Reach Out
18. Ronika – Wiyoo (Jupiter reMix)
19. The Sequence – I Just Want To Know
20. Donna Allen – Serious
21. Persnickety All Stars – One Hundred And Nine (Mr. Snippy Mix)
11. Chela – Zero

Ronika’s Selectadisc is due out 2nd June.

Buy Ronika’s music from:

[Audio] Ronika’s ‘Shell Shocked’

 

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Our girl Ronika has finally announced her long long long awaited forthcoming début album. Spoiler alert: it’s awesome. We shouldn’t really say any more at this point, but it’s easily going to be one of the highlights of the year. It’s titled, Selectadisc, after the Notts record shop, and Ron’s giving you lot a taste of what’s to expect in the form of album track Shell Shocked. Check it out.

Shell Shocked is what Ronika does best. A slightly Disco-y blend of Pop and Electro Boogie that’s deceptively complex and insanely catchy. One of the emotional highs of the album, Shell Shocked delivers some spine tingling 80s Power Pop moments amid a sea of thick synth bassed vintage Funk. With the epicness of an 80s movie soundtrack and the street groove of Electro Soul, Shell Shocked is a fine primer for what’s to come. Believe us, this is the year Ron blows up.

♫ Ronika – Shell Shocked

Ronika’s Selectadisc is due out 2nd June.

Buy Ronika’s music from:

[Audio] CJ Mirra’s ‘RGB Flowers’

 

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CJ Mirra is the synthetic alter-ego if John Sampson, after earning critical acclaim in the Indie world, he’s now flexing his creative muscles with an array of electronic gadgetry. CJ Mirra creates eerie soundscapes, Sci-Fi soundtracks and emotionally resonant moods, all set to undulating and intricate rhythms. His début EP was released next month on Colour8 Records with RGB Flowers, it’s lead track, featuring partner-in-crime Ronika.

RBG Flowers is a pulsating opus that walks the line between futuristic, dystopian, soundtrack and deeply human lament. With rhythms built upon a combination of grinding machine beats and Tabla-esque purcussion, RGB Flowers lays down the juxtaposition of brutal, chainsaw bass and beautiful, Vangelis style synths to create a slightly edgy, slightly unsettling, but always intoxicating piece to take with you into the night. A vaguely recognisable Ronika delivers a performance that adds an extra personal quality to the track, but works more as an additional instrument on CJ Mirra’s sonic canvas than as the tunes focal point. Oh, and there’s a hazy sax solo, and sax makes everything better. The EP comes equipped with and instrumental version of RGB Flowers and the enigmatic and eerie dance beats of Soft Candles and is definitely one you should check out if you fancy a slice of intelligent and meticulously crafted electronica.

♫ CJ Mirra (Feat. Ronika) – RGB Flowers

CJ Mirra’s three track début EP, RBG Flowers, is released 4th November.

Check out more from CJ Mirra on SoundCloud.

[Audio] Ronika reMixed by Sugardaddy

 

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Now that our girl Ronika’s utterly infectious Rough ‘N’ Soothe is out in the wild, and one of our surprise anthems of the summer (we say ‘surprise’ because we weren’t expecting it to get that stuck in our heads), we can give you a listen to the final reMix. this one comes from Sugardaddy, long standing duo comprised of Groove Armada’s Tom Findlay and Tim Hutton.

Sugardaddy whip up a vibe that walks the line between 80s epic and deep bassy House track. Bleeding snatches of rockin’ riff and soulful chimes over a B-Boy beat, this reMix created a enigmatic club groove for Ron’s vocals to drift in and out of. Replete with all manner of synthetic flourishes, the track feels like a Dub version of an existing tune, whist we imagine the other track to be lush 80s electronic Soul, this reMix is squarely aimed at late night dancefloors. Also, 100 points for the hilarious photo, that’s a genuine headline!

♫ Ronika – Rough ‘N’ Soothe (Sugardaddy reMix)

Ronika’s Rough ‘N’ Soothe is out now.

Buy Ronika’s music from:

[Mixtape] Ronika’s ‘Escalator To The Equator’ Mixtape

 

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Ronika – Escalator To The Equator Mixtape = Here’s the ultimate collection of laid back summery tunes for your holiday weekend. Coming courtesy of Ronika who delivers over an hour of smooth grooves and infectious funk with tunes to make you smile, and tunes to make you move.

Ronika – Escalator To The Equator Mixtape

The tracklist:
01. Kassav – Langue Moin
02. Tim Maia – E Necessario
03. Amadou And Mariam – Sabali
04. Sophia George – Mek You Feel Fine
05. Jensen Sportag – Jareaux
06. Alison Valentine – Peanut Butter
07. Ronika – Rough ‘N’ Soothe (The HICS reMix)
08. Pegasus – Cool Runnings
09. Miami Sound Machine – Rhythms Is Gonna’ Get Ya
10. Mzekezeke – Ngihambha Phantsi
11. Sunless ’97 – Aurora I
12. Robert Ffrench – Heart On Fire
13. Ronika – Rough ‘N’ Soothe
14. Rihanna – If It’s Loving That You Want
15. Aaliyah – Rock The Boat
16. Princess – Say I’m Your Number One
17. Swimming – Kid Global
18. Rita Lee – Maria Mole
19. Herbie Hancock – Watermelon Man
20. Free Life – There’s Something Better

Buy Ronika’s music from:

  

[Video] Ronika’s ‘Rough ‘N’ Soothe’

 

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This was the best thing to come home to after a week ballin’ in Vegas. The video for our girl Ronika’s excellent new single Rough ‘N’ Soothe.

Michael Robinson directed the clip, which loads up on vintage video effects to create a mood as dreams as the track itself.

Ronika’s Rough ‘N’ Soothe is out this week..

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[Audio] Ronika reMixed by The HICS

 

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Whilst chatting about 90s R&B when we posted about Ronika’s forthcoming new single, Rough ‘N’ Soothe, we were this close to mentioning Mariah Carey. It seems we weren’t the only ones to  get this vibe either, as London based Electronic Soul outfit The HICS inject the track with more than enough smooth 90s swing to tip it over the edge straight into Carey ballad territory.

Of course, the key is the chorus and the chimes, both of which are kept intact in the mix, but layered over a booming, laid back, kick & shaker beat and lazy keys. Stirring up a musical daydream, The HICS have delivered that rare of things, a reMix that completely differs from the original (not just a different take on the same thing), but one that sounds just as relevant to the song. It’s not all pastiché either, these guys litter the track with interesting synthetic touches to keep things fresh. We’re looking forward to what else the EP, out in April, holds.

♫ Ronika – Rough ‘N’ Soothe (The HICS Refit)

Ronika’s Rough ‘N’ Soothe Is released 22nd April.

Buy Ronika’s music from: