GRRL is a must follow on Soundcloud. Even before he started dropping insane original productions, and ceiling crumbling DJ sets, GRRL had established himself as a preeminent internet tastemaker. His astounding repost abilities make him one of the best sources of new music online. GRRL’s most recent offering is a collab with WHIPPED CREAM, whose varied catalogue skews rattling, sub-heavy, and invariably satisfying. The match works incredibly well.
Escalate is 4 minutes of apocalyptic, club madness. The track forgoes any real melody (who the fuck needs it?) in favor of lurching, distorted stabs, immaculate switch-ups, and a generous sprinkling of everyone’s favorite elements of Jersey Club. This is the kind of track that insights a “What the fuck?” and an involuntary head bob simultaneously. I can’t fucking wait to hear it in the club.
A large Chet Faker influence lingers throughout “Fundamentalism” thanks to Archy Stranger’s vocals and his synth-heavy instrumentation. Aside from that, a head-turning female vocal sample collides perfectly with Archy Stranger’s vocal & production combo, which in the end creates something very peaceful.
I’ve recently heard that when someone describes a song with the word “future” it’s a blend of at least two different styles or genres of music. That word has been thrown around a lot in the last few years. Most people would agree electronic music genres are defined by certain beats and compositions. After traveling down the twisting and sprouting sonic path called “Slumber Party” I’m impressed with the amount of musical styles that are meshed together over the course of four minutes. Sonny Side Up drops you into melancholic waters where the only thing you have to tread with are piano keys swinging in and out of time interweaving with howling strings that loom carelessly. Calmness and anxiety oscillate seamlessly to tribal rhythm consisting of a wide range of crushed pops, chirps, laughs, and snaps over a banging kick. Taking a break from the stampede a choir sings in the jungle with the animals and the dust calms only to be kicked up again with a four on the floor hi hat mash. All of these crisp, luscious, and natural sounds are painted with a shimmering synth-pad that’s gushing out tickling overtones. I’d equally be happy to put this on the dance floor and watch everyone’s inner animal become exposed as I would be to listen by myself in my room wondering what’s going on outside. Sonny Side Up is an emerging artist that focuses on what engages our ears executed with entertainment in mind without losing any sense of emotion and honesty.
Kagwe is a music scouts wet dream – a relatively undiscovered kid that seems to already have extensive production skill and distinguishable musical character on lock. I vouch that Kagwe is the next to blow; anything short of that would be plain injustice.
His first three works Sometimes, Vomit & A Frog Named Grace brought us dreamy and partially videogame-esque synth design, meticulously crafted percussion lines and hypnagogic chords and soundscapes. His newest release (allegedly unfinished), Gradually, not only incorporates these trademarks but also reveals his impressive vocals for the first time. Drums and other percussive elements come together to construct a wonky but strong pulse while chip-tune synths and modulating supersaws generate partially dissonant but lucid chord shapes and melodic content.
This young wunderkind is a massive inspiration to me (and I’m sure plenty of others), so I had a little chat to him lately to get a few insights.
How are you man?
I’m good, always good even if I’m not.
Introduce yourself for the listener unaware.
My name’s Kagwe (pronounced cog-way), I’m just an altered version of you.
If there’s one thing you’ve done today significant enough to mention, what is it?
I went to class. That is significant for me.
Did it suck or did you get stuff done?
It only sucks when the teacher is just reading off the same PowerPoint they post on the class website, so it’s like why am I even here right now? So yeah it sucked. But my art class is cool, the teacher only shows images and actually says things worth coming to class for; he’s opening my mind to new concepts. So it was 50/50 today.
How long have you been doing music for?
Since second grade (I was 6 or 7 years old). I started out with classical piano which continued until the end of sophomore year of high school, along the way picked up drums and guitar.
It’s a different trigger every time, ya know. Guess I’m inspired by life in general. Are you asking about artists that inspire me?
Artists as well if you want.
I was initially inspired to make what I’m making now by my parents. My dad, Aaron Carmack, you probably haven’t heard of him, he got me into the whole forward thinking beats thing, and my mommy Grynpyret, she taught me to be myself and that I can do anything I set mind to.
If you were president of the US for a day what would you be doing?
Making music and ignoring my responsibilities.
Black. But really, that is the absence of colour, I love how it’s a canvas, triggers the imagination and the souls instinct to turn nothing into something. But if we’re being technical, purple.
What would be the first thing you’d cop with a million dollars?
Cliche but definitely would build the best studio ever. It sounds selfish but I’m working with close to nothing right now and honesty I feel like the best thing I can do for humanity is make music.
You get to turn a fictional character in a real person, who and why?
I can’t. Everything in it’s place. Plus, why would you even want to bring something living in a fantasy into this “real” world, I’d imagine it’s way better on the other side. In fact, I would do the opposite and turn myself into a cartoon even though I already kinda am one.
One place you want to travel to?
I’m pretty cultured so really I just wanna go to LA cause it’s poppin’ over there. And Jena (J. Roosevelt) is over there.
“I think, therefore, I am.” – Rene Descartes
Any last advice for anyone?
CVIRO and GXNXVS’s “Sober” received the Feki treatment and it’s unbelievably vibey. The Australian beat making prodigy has been on our radar for a while now. From his unique sound selection to his uplifting synth work, this track is everything you could want from a Feki song. Not to mention the original is absolutely gorgeous.
We’re very aware that we are sounding like a broken record at this point, but this week provided yet another onslaught of terrific releases. Tulpa, MEDASIN, and dot showed up strong with soothing vibes, while Miki Rose and El. Train delivered a substantial new EP with their own brand of soul. The slightly 80s influenced pop of Rationale appears with one final single before his upcoming album, and HUNNY breaks their radio silence with a relentlessly upbeat new song that is sure to drastically improve your day.
Oshan continues to rise as a premier example of what prime future bass can entail, and GRYFFIN rocks our world with yet another powerful remix that’s already seen a large amount of success. Chrome Sparks switched up his usual style for the 2015 Future Classic sampler and it’s a simply a melodic wonder. Finally, when it comes to remixes, it’s going to be hard to top Odesza remixing Porter Robinson. Seeing the World remixes roll in has been an absurdly exciting experience, and each one has been spectacular, but Odesza, unsurprisingly, took their work to infinity and beyond. Don’t forget to show all of these talented people support in every way possible!
Oshan returns with a funky fresh original titled “Dafty” featuring the vocals of Krue. We are feeling the vivid synth stabs, lush soundscape, and all of this Sydney based producer’s past work.
Kehlani is one of the fastest rising stars in a new generation of R&B acts. Here mixtape You Should Be Here was amazing and she follows it up with a selection of remixes from a who’s who of beat makers. Sango, Mike Gao, Promnite, Mr. Carmack are among the names drawn upon for this package. It’s a diverse one too with touches of trap, future bass, electronica and glitched out ambient. All in all, it’s a great collection that’s worth your afternoon listen at the very least. I have a feeling though you’ll listen to this more then just once.
I can’t get enough of MUTO. Several months ago, after Flume reposted his Timberlake remix, I few in love with this dude’s sounds and have not been able to get enough of them. This time he takes Aayushi and Dillistone’s “Diamond Child” and creates a pleasurable rework. Stream below.