Oh shit I forgot I have a website that I need to run...
Remember when I said I would do this weekly on the first roundup? I sounded like a straight-up politician with that lie lol, but nah, had to take a break to deal with a few life things, but now I can safely say that WE BACK. Just gonna go over a bunch of music that I've been listening to as of late. You already know that I'm going to throw you around with lots of different shit, so go put on your comfy pants and get yourself ready, because like I said, WE BACK!
I Have Listened to this Song Against My Will About 300 Times Now and That's Totally Fine
Y'all are about to witness a masterclass of Brazil remixing a song into oblivion. I've noticed that this happens every now and then with certain popular Brazilian songs, as it feels almost required that every funk producer has to give their interpretation of them. This time it's this song "202 É a Nossa Suite," a Tiktok earworm from artists Kweller and Enzo Cello. In my opinion, the song is just okay - The progression of those droning synth pad chords is really nice and serves a nice backbone for some of these remixes, but I just get "taking IG stories at the hookah bar with the hose in your hand, but you're actually too scared to smoke hookah" vibes from it. Regardless, funk producers from all over the country have been tearing this song to shreds, as I have come across at least 50 different remixes of this damn song. I'm a bit exhausted of hearing them say "Geme pra eu ouvir" for the 700th time but it's the versatility of these remixes and how batshit insane some of these producers are that makes me keep listening to this damn song. Here's a few standouts that keep me coming back:
I think I can assume that this is the "official" remix as there's a whole ass music video with the two dudes in it, but all in all, good choice, because you gave that remix to one of the most promising producers in the entire country right now. São Paulo's DJ Arana is a 16 year old kid who learned how to produce on their phone and has become a star this year with some of the strangest and most forward-thinking mandelao funk ever created. There's a reason why he dresses up like a fucking wizard 95% of the time, because he's not of this dimension. This remix further proves it, because what the hell is going on here. He's starting off banging pots and pans on that 1st drop, then he's throwing in these out-of-key menu confirmation noises and drowning them with this assault of booming, feel-it-in-your-chest kicks, and this kid just ends it all slowed down, making every kid with a slowed and reverbed YouTube delete their whole entire shit. It just further confirms the hell of a year Arana has had, and this just seems like a precursor, as it's only the beginning of this young kid's dominance.
Now this one is just barebones and a lot more traditional from Rio's DJ VINICIUS DE MACABU. That strictly acapella beat coupled with the vicious wrath of that bass hit fits perfectly over that dronish synth pad I was talking about earlier. Short, sweet, and to the point.
This beat from Rio's DJ LUCAS DA BARREIRA is just strange - It feels like some Mr. Bones' Wild Ride type shit, but its strange juxtaposition with that subdued original song works perfectly. There's too many damn beat types to keep up with sometimes, I swear...
Speaking of strange, DJ JEAN 22 is easily one of the strangest producers in funk right now. All of his tunes have this weirdly uneasy feel to them; I don't know if they experiment with microtones, but I get that similar feeling with his sound. With his remix, DJ JEAN takes this song and shoots it into the eternal nothingness of outer space, as those chords that I keep talking about are almost unrecognizable here. It almost doesn't feel right in your head, but that's why I like it so much. It's literally impossible for a funk tune to be "too weird," and this proves it.
DJ CAIO speeds it up greatly here, and adds this aggressive and accelerating drum beat that takes this song's finger and puts it in an electrical outlet. Just high-energy throughout.
You know the folks in Belo Horizonte had to get their hands on this too, as their sample-heavy, atmospheric style is one of the crown jewels of baile funk right now. BH's DJ NK DA SERRA transforms the song into something so different compared to the other remixes. He's not just replacing drum beats and speeding up; here, he's adding in new parts from other MCs and giving "202" a whole new life on a different planet.
Lastly, we have Nova Friburgo's DJ A.L SHEIK showing that you can make a heater by just adding some overblown beatbox noises and turning the bass mix up 87dB. It sounds so disjointed and sluggish, but it fits perfectly with the lowkey song. Brazil has taught me that mixing is not real and all of you guys made that shit up.
But yeah, Brazil is insane. It has broken my brain beyond repair this year, but hopefully be on the lookout for more deep dives in that crazy country, because y'all are missing out on some incredible music. Deus abençoe o brasil.
Shout Out Scotland One Time
Man, shout out the queen dying. That was a funny ass day, not gonna lie... She missed out on both the new Yeat and Nav by a day....that's a shame. But while I'm on that subject, I gotta also give some love to my Scottish and Irish people - They got the cooler accents and are some funny ass folks. Today, I want to focus on the lads in Scotland who wear track suits and drink Buckfast at 3 in the morning. Scottish Makina was something I discovered during the beginning of the pandemic probably in a haze at like 3 in the morning as well, but I just got obsessed with this shit immediately. I'll be the first to say that this is absolutely cheesy as hell and can be absolutely comical at time, especially with these hilarious album covers with these Scottish kids posted up like Celtic FC just won the Champions League. Like, look at this shit:
It's giving me this energy..
Trust me though! The music is really fun and has some really interesting origins. So, Makina was actually created in Spain around the late 80s and early 90s, primarily in Valencia, as it was a Spanish off-shoot of the happy hardcore scene that was taking off in the UK that also took elements from the local Valencian style of "bakalao," another old-school and rave-filled sound that filled clubs up in the region. Sonically, makina is just super bouncy, bubbly, and fast. It's just something made for the clubs, and in clubs across Spain, makina was huge, as it was a big part of the LGBTQ+ culture and community of the area. As the 2000s rolled around, the sound made its way to the rave scene of the UK, where makina started to become its own thing in both Northeast England, and our focus for today: Scotland.
What the Brits added to makina was the prominence of MCs who would rap over these really busy and adrenaline-pumping beats, adding a whole new dimension to the genre. Yeah, you can barely understand what the fuck these people are saying, but it goes crazy if you got it loud enough! As time went on, makina started to become its own specific culture in these areas that became pretty endearing (HIGHLY recommend this short doc from Boiler Room on NE England's makina culture that gives a good look at how unique this is). You even have people doing this shit during funerals - It's serious over there, and I respect the hell out of that.
As for Scotland's makina scene, I guess its prominence on SoundCloud is what got me so deep into the genre. The majority of the tunes on there are mostly remixes of either Ibiza-drunken shitty EDM tunes or for some odd reason, Rihanna?? I don't know, but there's a lot of Rihanna makina remixes and they're all so good. Some notable Scottish makina producers to check out are Jack McCrindle, Pawel Bussa, and DJ Scotty, all definitive parts of this culture, however, the GOAT of Scottish makina is easily Coatbridge's Connor Gallagher, someone whose music is the textbook definition of this genre. His 25+ track "Makina" series is an essential listen to truly appreciate this genre - It's chock-full of heart-racing and caffeine-riddled tunes that could probably wake up Lizzy herself. If we are being honest, is this music like the greatest thing ever made? Hell no. But, is it fun as hell? Abso-damn-lutely, and that's why I encourage you to check this out. Here's a few definitive makina tunes in my opinion:
Now if that isn't your thing, I totally recommend at least going through the comments of these songs, because you'll find gold like whatever the fuck they're saying here:
Once Again, Everybody in Jersey is Out of Their Fucking Minds
Sure, club rap is totally what is making this culture thrive right now, but can we start putting some damn respect on these club producers??? Jersey right now is brewing up some of the most insane club music out of any region in the world - It's just so overblown, left-field, and surreal to the point where it's almost polarizing to the average listener. To that average listener, I'll go pay for you to go get your ears cleaned because this is some of the best shit on earth right now, and you are missing the fuck out! Of course, there's an uncomfortable amount of music being put out right now, but I just wanted to showcase the real CRAZY shit from the last few weeks.
First, qua is slowly becoming one of the best Jersey club producers going right now. He really takes inspiration from the hazy and undecipherable styles of mad scientist club giants SteezTheProducer and HaZeTheProducer, but as he has gotten better, he is making totally something of his own. For his birthday, qua put out a mix of mostly unreleased tunes of his, and this might be the most insane 10 minutes of music you will hear from any part of the planet this year. From the start, it feels like you've been teleported to this purgatory-like void where nothing is recognizable. For the next few minutes, qua throws you up and around every crack and crevice of this hellish pit of noise with some of the most inventive club music that has ever been made. There's so many ideas in here that just convinces me that this kid has a time machine. Like those last 3 minutes or so still just breaks all the neurons in my brain, because this shit shouldn't even be possible! If I had to choose a favorite part, it would totally be that moment around 3:50 where he takes the GTA III theme and mixes it with Sean Paul glitching the hell out, but it's seriously hard to just choose one. Just listen to the whole thing because this shit is out of this world.....literally! qua's seriously a magician, and I'm just terrified to see what is in store for him in the future, because he's destined to be one of the next greats in Jersey Club music.
Alright, so to be quite honest, I write a LOT about club music, so for this roundup, I thought it would be funny to switch it up for the rest of the songs showcased on here, so what I'm going to do here is describe the rest of these ridiculous tunes with just a single wrestling gif. Saves y'all a bunch of time, as well as for me, because I don't have to find 500 different ways to say that these people are out of their fucking minds. Okay, here we go:
(Shoutout Tiktok for this one)
Couldn't decide on a single gif for this one, so enjoy two of them:
Alright, one last bit of Jersey Club and I promise I will shut up about it. I just wanted this off by shining some light on some recent full releases in the genre, because I feel like not enough people are aware of most of them. Lately, there's been stellar releases like "SKYPE" from South Jersey's RetroJ, who has one of the most unique styles in the genre right now, "Latin Club 4" from Paterson's DJ Cueheat, a more traditional collection of remixes of popular reggaeton tunes that feels like it's coming from 2016, and "HEALING," the highly-anticipated return of Newark's Vivid The Producer, where she continues to prove that they're one of the best in the city right now. Some other notable releases are a compilation marking the return of [Fuddy]Gvdz, a prominent Jersey producer crew, that boasts some really great songs throughout, "LEO SZN" from Itstahtahplayinnn, and lastly, "So Much Too Say But Nahh," a consistently great hybrid of club rap and banging beats from club legend LilC4.
Man, this still barely touches the surface of how much shit is going on in this heater of a scene, but the New Jersey state government hasn't paid me a cent yet for giving all of this publicity to them, so I'm at my limit for today. There's still 3 months left in the year, so there's still plenty of time for more crazy shit to happen with this genre (apparently, there's a Bandman tape coming out soon👀), as 2022 is easily the greatest year in this unique culture's young history.
Nobody Does Fast Better than Florida
There's just something about speeding music up. Like, there seriously needs to be a study done by scientists to see what it does to brain, because I have been obsessed with fast music since I was a kid. I used to have one of those Yamaha keyboards with all of the preinstalled accompaniments, and I would just always set them to the highest tempo like a crazy person. As I got more on the internet as a teenager, I discovered nightcore, the anime-influenced style of speeding/pitching up popular songs, and I got hooked, man. I never understood the anime appeal of it because I never got into any of that shit before, but going on YouTube back in the early 2010s and searching "____ nightcore remix" caused so many sleepless nights. I even made some of my own and uploaded them onto YouTube so many years ago - I had no idea what to do with the anime picture for all of them, so I just shittily photoshopped Evangelion characters onto the artists to keep the nightcore essence. That was a really fun time, but pretty soon after, I finally discovered what the true pinnacle of sped up music was.
It probably wasn't until 2015/2016 until I heard about Florida Fast music, a South Florida staple that speeds up mostly local songs to connect the immeasurable influence that Miami bass has had on the region. It's been around the area since at least 1996, as lately, Broward County has served for the main hub for the style. Obviously, there were others before them, but I feel like FastMusic954 was truly the first place that really showcased that culture, as you were having artists like Kodak just starting to emerge around that time. More recently, fast music is almost synonymous with Broward's DJ Frisco954, one of the hardest working people on SoundCloud. There's like an entire DJ Frisco954 universe, as he has a cavalcade of accounts on there ranging from Kodak DJ Frisco to NBA DJ Frisco to Rod Wave Frisco to even just Unreleased Frisco, that just focuses on unreleased tunes - It's pretty overwhelming, but the more, the merrier. Especially with how Florida's rap scene is booming right now, fast music is only getting better and better, so I just wanted to showcase 5 of my favorites as of late. (Shout out DJ Fetti Fee too; Didn't want to forget him!)
Florida Jook music is a treasure. I feel like "Dump It Dummy" is the first jook song that takes inspiration from the booming club rap scene up north, as that Miami flair that makes it so fresh to listen to. Especially with it sped up, it's irresistible. Shout out Tre Oh Fie though! The best jook producer in the state right now.
Lauderhill's Lil Crix is slowly becoming one of my favorites from that area as of late. That Kodak collab is great, but "Bad Habits" might be his best yet. At regular speed, it sounds sinister and hard hitting, but once DJ Frisco gets a hold of it, that percussion is constantly whirling around your ears and you just have a sudden urge to go drive 100 mph down your street. It's magic...
Yody 4x is a West Palm Beach native who's another FL rapper just starting to make some noise. These hard Detroit beats work so well with their voices, and it never ever misses. "Link & Meet" is a pretty easy-going song at normal speed, but the fast mix just feels like the more appropriate version. The 808s flow so perfectly at that speed, and Yody's voice is almost unrecognizable. A really smooth mix.
The fact that Rod Wave and Rascal Flatts never linked up is so fucked up - It's like they're made for each other. Aside from my Nashville CMT Music Awards performance fantasies, Rod Wave has an incredible voice. Yeah, the music can be pretty samesy and is almost always sad as hell, but it's hard to deny the talent of St Petersburg native. Now when you speed that shit up? It's like he's floating down to me from the heavens and I start having the tendency to comment on Youtube videos with "This is a REAL singer not that autotune CRAP." But seriously, fast Rod Wave is so damn good. Here,"Stone Rolling" is transformed into this energetic barrage of crooning from the singer that gets you to follow the stages of listening to Rod Wave.
Tallahassee's LUHTYLER might be my favorite coming out of Florida right now. Yeah, he kinda looks like an eighth grader and sounds like one too, but it's that flow and swagger that he holds that makes this young rapper so good. "Jayda Wayda" was the first song I heard from him and I was just hooked immediately. He's got hilarious lines like "Do a jit like Timmy Turner/Poof a [buddy] like it's magic" and "And a [buddy] cup dirty like it need to take a bath," plus his drawn out delivery just makes it one of my favorite songs so far this year. Now give it that Florida Fast magic, and now he sounds like a 3rd grader, but it's so damn hard! The Florida fast mixes of "Law & Order Pt 2" and "Moon" do the same trick as well - It's like a fucking drug. LUHTYLER is still so young, so he still has boatloads of potential, but it's only a matter of time until he helps put Tally on the map.
Lagniappe - Bandcamp Edition
Woah woah woah now, we're not just done yet. Just wanted to end this off by throwing around a bunch of extra shit that I didn't want to leave out. First, I just wanted to showcase a few things from Bandcamp that I've been digging recently. Sad to see that Epic taking over that website hasn't resulted in The Caretaker being in Fortnite yet.....whatever here we go:
Devin Morrison - Dream Lobby Vol I-III
When it comes to R&B music, I feel like absolutely no one ever talks about Devin Morrison. The Orlando native's 2019 debut Bussin' is easily one of the best R&B albums in recent memory. It seriously feels it came straight from the 90s - I feel like there should be a tape hiss in the background because it feels that retro. More recently, Morrison has further explored his sound, culminating in the creation of "Dreamsoul," a concept that came to the artist during a dream while in Tokyo. What came to him was something "Spiritual. Surreal. Nostalgic," and the result of him recreating that vision is music that feels like it is oozing out of a VCR tape. There's this familiar warmness to Morrison's sound that I cannot get enough of. More recently, he has been advancing that idea of Dreamsoul with his 3 volume Dream Lobby collection, a handful of instrumental tracks that showcase the already-stellar production prowess of Morrison. There's tinges of smooth jazz, slow jam R&B heaters, PS2 driving game menu music that goes hard throughout the collection, which showcases the versatility of what Dreamsoul really is. It's not necessarily a genre; it's moreso a feeling that Morrison has been trying to chase since that night in Tokyo. With how exciting and unique Devin's music is at the moment, it's pretty understandable why he is going above and beyond to rediscover that irresistible feeling. Totally worth a listen.
Blank Wall Season - Thoughts on Manifolds
Now this is just an experience.. I guess you could call it ambient music, but it's much more than that. Blank Wall Season is an Istanbul-based composer who heavily experiments with complex textures, and here, they create these sounds that feels like they come from another galaxy. It's, at times, metallic, nihilistic, awe-inducing, while still being reminiscent of being eternally stranded alone in some type of alien-like space. I haven't heard anything like this anywhere this year, so especially for those texture-heads out there, this one is for you.
Death is Not The End - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991 - 1996, Vol. 2
I'm not a big "If I had a time machine" person, but the early 90's is a time that really wish I could have experienced, mostly because of the UK rave scene. The music and culture of that era is something that has always intrigued me since I was a teenager. It's so alien to how dance music is today, so it's crazy to call something close to only 30 years old a relic today. All in all, a great time machine to that early 90's era of UK dance culture is the Pause for the Cause advert collection from London-based label Death is Not The End. It's a glimpse into the world of rave music in London, as these bite-sized ads served as an "audio equivalent of the rave flyer." In these adverts, you can see the bangers of the time here, plus you can see how the word for these parties were spread in a pre-internet era. They all have this charm to them, and it's something that couldn't be replicated today. Yeah, it's literally just a bunch of party advertisements, but I can't stop listening to it. Here's the first volume as well, and I also recommend the London Pirate Radio Advert collection this label did back in 2020.
DJ Taye - Ghost
When it comes to Teklife and just footwork in general, Chicago's DJ Taye is one of the most underappreciated figures in that entire scene. 2018's Still Trippin' is still a hallmark in Chicago's continuously-lasting legacy, as it perfectly combined footwork and rap, despite still giving more of a focus on the production aspect of the music. Since then, one of Teklife's youngest members has become one of footwork's current greats - up there with the RP Boo's, DJ Manny's and the Jana Rush's of this unique world. A few weeks ago, Taye surprisingly dropped a new mixtape entitled Ghost that shows off his versatile production chops, boasting tunes ranging from drum and bass, to garage, to good ol' juke. The standout here for me is the DJ Jalen collab "Renegade," which gives the Jay Z cut from the first Blueprint album an energized Chicago facelift - It feels like something coming from that early 2010s era of footwork and I can't get enough of it. Ghost seems like just a collage of ideas from the producer, as they said that they might just delete this after a while, but it just shows that whether it's a true album or not, DJ Taye does not let off the accelerator when showcasing his talent. Hopefully we can get another Hyperdub release soon from the young legend.
西園寺流星群 - HANA＊HANA
Um, sure. I really don't know what the fuck is going on here but I like it. This is a release from Japanese label Ukiuki Atama, who isn't afraid of releasing absolutely strange music. Here with HANA * HANA, it feels like music that should be on Fall Guys but only if you're having a salvia-induced panic attack. It's chaotic and busy and can almost feel like a chore to listen, but it's strangeness is quite charming. Also that deranged album cover that it has... It also reminds me of the underrated SoundCloud legend Kinesthetiac a bit, but a lot more disjointed. Recommend if you want to put your brain in the blender for a little bit.
Hallmark '87 - Quiet Storms
I just randomly stumbled across this one going through the experimental music tag on Bandcamp, and not gonna lie, I was a bit skeptical at first, as it was describing itself as "climatewave" and "mallsoft," which are totally not real genres. Despite that so-so first impression, I really grew to like this little album. While I'm at work, I don't really listen to a lot of busy tracks, so I usually have a rotation of drone and ambient music, and this has been in there since I discovered it. Contrasting to Hallmark's more traditional vaporwave offerings, Quiet Storms is a different beast in itself, as it feels like eternally staring at a dark and rainy sky that is slowly enveloping you from your bedroom window. It's a nihilistic blanket that I don't want to get out from. The concept of it being a timeline of a storm passing over you is a really nice touch, as you can really sense the tension and eventual resolution throughout the album - The slow shift of beginning with surreal sounds reminiscent of the Silent Hill soundtrack to ending with happy-religious-cult-informercial-type music is a great experience. Just a really easy listen that is going to be perfect for when it gets cooler outside.
ojeras de damita - withered roses for eternal lovers
Remember when I was talking shit about The Caretaker earlier? Yeah, about that.... I really do enjoy Leyland Kirby's music, and I think that The Caretaker is a great project. The way that his music gained traction on Tiktok still makes no damn sense, but I think that any publicity is good publicity! Since then, there have been numerous copycats that are not good at all, but I think I finally found one artist whose homage to Kirby is pretty respectable. Lima, Peru's ojera de damita is "just a girl who loves memories," and man, are they good at those memories. The project instantly feels familiar with that warm, vinyl-cracking sound, but the catch here with withered roses for eternal lovers is that there's no samples at all here. Everything here has been composed and deconstructed by the mastermind herself, Antonella M, and that's really impressive, because I had no idea until I read about it in the Bandcamp description. It's somber, nostalgic, and magical throughout - a real sleeper hit that you should check out.
Okay Last Bit of Lagniappe from Hell
Alright, just one last check in on SoundCloud to see what the hell is going on over there:
This shit doesn't even faze me anymore, but man, this is just stupid lmao. Despite it saying that they're located in Australia, I'm sure The1500Demon has internet access in Hell because there's no way a person made this. If you ever wanted to hear what a demon sounds like over PluggnB, this is your guy. He even makes Yus Gz sound tame. A lot of this dude's music is honestly pretty laughable, but I love it lol. He's like a weirdly fucked-up combination of RXK Nephew and Saint Mercator but both of them need a throat lozenge. But, I seriously need more of whatever the fuck this is though. Good lord.
tf is "swexcore"
New genre alert. Can I honestly explain to you in terms what the fuck "swexcore" is? Honestly, not really.. But what I do know is that this shit is RIDICULOUS. NOLA/Houston native imnotmelrose is the mastermind behind this suffocating sound, as it feels like you're being bit-crushed to death. "bak ona edd" is seriously one of the hardest songs I have heard so far this year. It just feels like it's going to collapse any second. If swexcore isn't your thing, then I'm sure "erotic Swexcore" is more your style. But seriously, this is so damn good. Y'all SoundCloud folks are slacking on the genres man! I need more fake shit like keychaincore or a drill offshoot genre just named Ted. Y'all get back to lab ASAP!
Jesus Fucking Christ
All I gotta say here is.... why?
Same Thing with This Shit
Sounds like Baths 🤣
Shed Theory x Surf Gang Does Not Disappoint
Shed Theory is seriously the future. This group of constantly dissociating dudes is making some of the weirdest music on SoundCloud right now. In there, you got crazy folks like Marlon DuBois, Dream Caster and Laker, and then Peter Griffin if he smoked carts and never met Lois. Like these people are legitimately insane - The music videos are unlike anything else right now too. There's this strangely eternal haze of dejection I get from their music that feels like a drug-induced haze, and this recent collab track "RAT" with Surf Gang mainstays Evilgiane and Harto Falión perfectly describes that feeling. Giane's beat is filled with emptiness and is just somberly droning throughout, while you have this thick layer of barely decipherable lyrics coming from Harto, Joeyy, Marlon, and the others that exhibits that detachment from reality. I seriously can't get enough of it.
Milwaukee is slowly becoming one of my favorite rap cities.
And to think, all I thought these folks were good for was cheese and Giannis... For the past few years, Milwaukee has been slowly turning into one of the country's strangest rap scenes. In the sound itself, it feels like I'm listening to Michigan rap while having an anxiety attack, plus Mannie Fresh is somehow in my house kicking my ass. It's pretty absurd at times, and can be best seen with artists like MarijuanaXO, Tae Rackzz, and Spanish Rice. A lot of people, especially TikTok, see this shit as a joke, but god, I can't get enough of it. Those beats with the continuous bass hits and claps, like that Pce Bj song, are so addicting. Adding in those atonal, autotune-slathered deliveries from all of these rappers, you have one of the most unique sounds in rap right now.
Lastly, how could I forget the king of Slap City, Certified Trapper. Free this fucking man!! There is literally no one on Earth who sounds like him right now. He's one of the few "post-Lil-B" rappers, aside from RXK and Papi, who has made their own thing work. He's like if the beats from Back From the Dead 2 became a rapper. His sound is just so strange and unorthodox, but that's what makes him so compelling. If I'm not mistaken, a lot of his shit is self-produced which makes him even more insane. He's seriously someone you would need to devote a whole day to, as going through his YouTube account is a must. There's an unfathomable amount of shit from there that absolutely boggles my mind. One of a kind.
Portugal never stops going hard
That is all.