The Shuffle Button is back! We apologize about the unplanned hiatus, but the important thing is that we have some great music for you to enjoy!
Bullion – Blue Pedro
“Blue Pedro” is a bit of a different sound than usual fare here. It’s not a pure dance song, it’s not a powerful and emotional electronic ballad. Instead it’s a cute song that makes you happy when you listen to it. Seriously, if you don’t crack a smile by the end of the song, we’d be very surprised.
Its attraction is in its charm. It sounds like the perfect ditty to listen to as you start your journey in your small sailboat. It would seem right at home as part of the score for a Wes Anderson movie.
Sometimes as fans of electronic music, we can get caught up in drama or sub-genre fighting, that every now and then it’s good to just sit back and listen to happy music, regardless of what genre it fits in.
Bicep – Opal (Four Tet Remix)
With the name recognition of the artists involved in this song, it’s no wonder that it’s a hit. Four Tet takes Bicep’s slightly offbeat original and smooths over the burs to make a track that is beautifully composed.
Bicep’s original supplies most of the dominant sounds, but Four Tet is so good at adding small elements that make a big difference. The ambient noise spread throughout makes you feel like you’re at a gig and the bell tones just bring the emotional feeling home, and of course the breaks filled bass-line (a Four Tet signature) makes the whole song flow smoothly.
It’s a kind of tune that seems like it should be played either in the very beginning or very end of the night. It has the perfect combination of light sounds with upbeat bass to set everyone off in the right mood, but it also has the perfect melancholy vibe to be the soundtrack to everyone saying their goodbye’s.
Stardust – Music Sounds Better With You (Mistrix Dub)
Stardust’s “Music Sounds Better With You” is an iconic song in dance music. It’s one of those all-time great tunes that can be thrown into so many sets and just flow.
Well, it appears that Mistrix found that while he loves the original, he couldn’t perfectly fit it into his sets. So, he took Stardust’s creation and set it to a tech-house beat. The dub helps to move the sunny, daytime inspired original into the club scene.
You can tell Mistrix doesn’t want to fully reimagine “Music Sounds Better With You”, he just wants to tweak it a little bit to fit his style. He does a great job of keeping all the elements of the original that have made it such a classic tune in the first place. However, he does allow himself to play with the composition a little bit and throw in a few additions to modify it just enough to make it his own.
Kelly Clarkson – Love So Soft (Mark Knight & Ben Remember Remix)
Continuing with the tech-house theme, we bring to you this Mark Knight and Ben Remember remix of “Love So Soft”. To call this a remix ties it too closely to Kelly Clarkson’s original. Instead, it sounds more like a tech-house tune that Knight and Remember had on hand and spliced in Clarkson’s vocal.
Either way, it’s a dancefloor banger. The pulsating bass-line combined with insistent horns encourage people to get on their feet. It’s a pulsing and vibrating track created by two men that made their name and their reputation as powerhouses in the tech-house genre.
Joe Ford & Memtrix – Out of Place
We’re now moving into a zone that is supremely contradictory to the rest of the songs that preceded “Out of Place” on this list and fills the drum and bass quota of the week.
Joe Ford has had a long string of releases that have a great balance of aggression but are not overly confronting. That style means that his sound can work well with other artists. In fact, many of his biggest releases in the past year have been collaborations.
“Out of Place” is another track that has a PLACE on that long list (sorry, couldn’t resist). Joe Ford and Memtrix have combined to make a great song that perfectly encompasses the amalgamation of their sounds. The bass-line fits right in with most of Ford’s releases, and the vocal, piano, and high tones show Memtrix’s strengths. The track manages to be both something that can move dancefloors, and a soulful and emotional display.
CHOOOON of the Week
Avicii – Levels
Avicii’s death is no longer breaking news. However, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t continue to honor him. Avicii’s career arc mirrored the meteoric rise of the “EDM” sound. He was one of the most influential artists in the scene for the last five years. He moved in and out of electronic and pop genres and his production skills were incredible. The development of his sound was admirable as it showed he was always willing to experiment.
Even though he very often was held up as the posterchild of how “EDM” was destroying dance music, he never complained or struck back at those criticizing him. He wasn’t always everybody’s cup of tea (the writer of this column was guilty of criticizing his sound many times over the years). But his influence and talent were undeniable.
We’re going to finish this week with possibly his biggest hit, and a song that influenced the last half decade of dance music. “Levels” was everywhere. It was in car commercials, sports stadiums, pop concerts, and of course in the sets of countless electronic deejays. It was a song that encapsulated just how big of a movement EDM had become.
Avicii you were gone too soon, but you’ll live on in the music that you created and gave to us.