Essential EP’s #11

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It’s been a while since my last Essential EP’s selection so here an edition with releases that are all from a month back or so. Influential releases like Chino Amobi’s or Kid Antoine’s, which received widely read attention from of the major online music magazines, have already cooled down to lukewarm in terms of attention, making place for even newer excitements. Other ones, like Los Innsurgentes’ La Maldad EP have flown a bit under the radar. Two artists whose previous EP’s were among the most impactful of 2015 are back now with follow-up releases that continue where they left off. Overally, as 2016 begins to take shape, the innovations of 2015 seem maturing into recognisable sounds, enriching, branching off and finding their way into different corners of music.

1. NAZAR Hubris EP (Track Meet)

Let’s start with Nazar, whose NIHIL EP was perhaps the single most original release of 2015. His confrontational, political approach to kuduro created a throat-gripping, industrial flavoured sound. ‘Hubris EP’, the Angolan avant-garde producer extends this powerful signature style with an even more rich set of influences, venturing into 808 drums, industrial techno and the ethereal synths of avant-garde club. In ‘Tyranny’ the producer also makes his first appearance as MC, using his own vocals to ironically praise Angola’s president.

The EP had been announced for a long time but could finally see the light via the upcoming avant-garde club label Track Meet.

>> BUY HERE <<

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2. ANGEL-HO Emancipation (NON)

One of the other most groundbreaking works last year was without any doubt ‘Ascension EP’ by Cape Town based NON co-founder ANGEL-HO, debuting on Halcyon Veil. Now, 6 months and many great single tracks later, he is back with a fresh EP released via his own NON WORLDWIDE label. And like Nazar’s, his sound too has become richer and more crystallised. Whereas ANGEL-HO’s arrival at the stage of the music scene seemed more concerned with disrupting the dominant cultural forces, now the post-disruption era has arrived with full force. This means that the black queer trans identities that ANGEL-HO represents have broken free from the colonial forces designed to suppress and erase them, triumphantly expressing themselves the way they want to, no longer needing juxtaposition to binary heteronormative whiteness as a reference frame at all. As I interpret it, this is also what the magnificent artwork (made by Chino Amobi) refers to: proud dragons, breaking out of the burning remnants of the past. “The old has gone, the new has come.” In sound this means that the characteristic tumultuous industrialism is no longer an end-point but a beginning. On ‘Emancipation EP’, ANGEL-HO’s signature sounds like accellerating cars and shattering glass are the crude ground from which all kinds of new sounds rise up in freedom.

ANGEL-HO teamed up with Desire Marea, one half of the performing art duo FAKA, whose vocals apear on the first and last track of the EP.

>> BUY HERE <<

https://soundcloud.com/non-records-1/sets/emancipation

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3. Chino Amobi Airport Music For Black Folk

Richmond based producer, designer and NON co-founder Chino Amobi has a unique style of producing that deviates most notably from conventional club music. Chino Amobi’s music isn’t there to make you dance and feel good about yourself. That is precisely part of the story that Amobi – as I understand him from interviews and from my personal interpretation – wants to convey with his music: resisting the exploitation of black music for the entertainment of the privileged, de-stereotyping black music and reclaiming it as a tool to express the reality of the black experience. Airport music is not much different. Brian Eno’s iconic experiment using hypnagogic soundscapes to transform the dull, hasty terminal into a serene and thoughtful environment has brought ubiquitous soothening background music to airports, most of which based on jazz and soul.

Amobi radically reverts the perspective. With trunkated, looped pieces of recognisable elements, unpredictibly interjected by menacing sounds and vocal messages, he exposes rather than dissolves the chaotic, tense atmosphere of the airport and its post 9/11 obsession with security and threat. The way Amobi manages to capture the intimidating unrest not of being in danger but of being looked at as the potential danger, an experience that can make air travelling an alienating activity for black folk, is an esquisite achievement of translating complex emotion into sound. And that makes him, in my opinion, one of the greatest composers of all time, on par with the eternal masters of blues, jazz and classical music.

‘Airport Music For Black Folk’ has been recorded in Berlin and was inspired by Amobi’s European tour, resulting in five tracks named after the cities and airports he visited. The elements used in the tracks overlap and the album is most fully appreciated when listened as a whole.

>> FREE DOWNLOAD <<

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4. Los Innsurgentes La Maldad EP

The Apodaca based duo Los Innsurgentes announced their dark flavoured 3ball bass EP ‘La Maldad’ more than a year ago but ever since, they went virtually silent until the point that even I, first hour fan of Los Innsurgentes, no longer expected it ever to be released. When listening to the EP, it is good to keep in mind that these are actually old tracks, probably finished and released long after they were first created. I was personally amazed how archaic, even nostalgic it sounds, to hear such an experimental use of growl bass synths. ‘La Maldad’ truly feels like a time glitch directly out of the now almost forgotten golden age of global bass, with producers like Caballo, when this formula of percussion with growls ruled supreme. The tense, mysterious atmosphere, especially in tracks like  ‘Base Frapp Cafe’ and ‘Litros de Sangre’ goes back to an even older root of Mexican electronic music: ruidosón.

Apodaca is a suburb of Monterrey, where the US-Mexican border region begins. The outburst of creativity, from Nortec to NAAFI, that made Mexico one of the most innovative places in the world for music over the last decade, is inextricably connected to the socio-cultural and political reality of that border and the American War on Drugs with all its evil (‘Maldad’), death and destruction it has created. Whether this is a second beginning for the duo or rather a goodbye present before leaving entirely, this anachronous EP sends a message that the Mexican electronic underground, 3ball in particular, needs to wake up once again.

>> FREE DOWNLOAD <<

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5. Kid Antoine Bodypaint (Her Records)

The track ‘Bodypaint’ by the Copenhagen based producer Kid Antoine is already an excitement in the club underground and got a shoutout from us recently as well in our summer festival bangers post. But beyond the track, the EP of which it is part, containing another original production, ‘Flood Control’ and a remix of ‘Bodypaint’ by Florentino, can’t possibly be absent in a selection of essential releases. Presenting the ethereal, futuristic vibes of the avante-garde club movement in an accessible way, perfectly combining with a wide variety of genres and sounds is becoming his immediately recognisable signature. He did that already on his debut EP ‘Proximity‘ a year ago and ‘Bodypaint EP’, which contains even more energetic drive, is the perfect follow up, again released on MM‘s label HER Records. On top of Kid Antoine’s already baile funk & dancehall inspired & jersey club inspired polyrhythmic beats, Florentino adds even more pumping, almost moombahtonesque dembow. If there must be any best example of ‘the sound of 2016’, where the flavours of avant-garde club will reign far beyond the avant-garde, trickling up into everything, ‘Bodypaint EP’ is all you need.

>> BUY HERE <<

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6. y y y Last Breath

I’d already been following this enigmatic avant-garde project from London for a while when I noticed how unique their work actually is and how solid their following. Scene-wise, they seem to come from the cloud/silk/vapor trap side, but in the grey zone between this section of the post-internet underground and the avant-garde club movement, which are often still worlds apart despite of the extensive overlap in aesthetics. Sound-wise they even smoothly blend in influences from genres like witch house or futurebeats. In the Soundcloud followers list too, I see all the imortant avant-garde club names popping up, which makes me wonder why we at Generation Bass have been sleeping on this all the time.

‘II’ is a unique, emotionally gripping EP with powerful sounds that, if anything, sound like a more less industrial version of the radical alchemy of WWWINGS. Officially it was set for release on the 25th of March, but so far the only thing I can find of it online is this folder without a buy or download link. If anyone knows their bandcamp, let us know via our facebook page. For the time being you can grab their equally impressive previous work, ‘[] EP’ HERE for free.

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7. Wolf & Witnessing Acapulco (_WDIS)

‘Acapulco’ is the intriguing product of a collaboration between the better known Infinite Machine curator, Wolf, and experimental futurist Witnessing, both based in Montreal, sharing Latin American heritage and personal friends of each other. They decided to explore their roots in the context of the critical reflections on the future which both of them usually focus on in their creative work. The track is a stunningly thoughtful, introspective as well as vibrantly expressive ambient-dembow-club tune. The catchy melodic work slightly resembles Kid Antoine, but with the viscous smoothness scorched away by a combination of the gothic heaviness of y y y and the raw chaoticism of Los Innsurgentes. Together with KABLAM‘s uptempo skeletal remix it makes a mini-EP which was released already two months ago on the Berlin based avant-garde label _WDIS.

>> FREE DOWNLOAD <<

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8. MHYSA Hivemind EP (NON)

A third NON WORLDWIDE release that can’t possibly be missing from any essential releases list is MHYSA’s ‘HIVEMIND EP’. E. Jane a.k.a MHYSA, a.k.a. E. The Avatar and one half of the performance & sound duo SCRAAATCH, is a multi-talented musician, visual artist, poet, critical internet theorist, activist and futurist from Philadelphia whose work is an interrelated patchwork of visions for the future of Blackness and queerness in a high technological world. With a combination of music, designs, performance and more, she exposes and radically rejects the ongoing systemic colonialist, racist and patriarchical oppression structurally built into the technology shaping the world. Like Chino Amobi’s has shown for airports, control, exploitation and exploration are persisting, white-colonial dreams that have shaped the internet to such extent that its language, assumptions and default structures produce an othering and agressive universe. Her resistance is itself cybernetic, embracing, bending and using rather than rejecting technology in order to create new, radically independent futures for Blackness and queerness to flourish.

‘Hivemind EP’ addresses the existential nature of social media as a networked space and the way it visualises the workings of collective consciousness, power relations and the impact of art and social change. With six stunning, thoughtful experimental ambient tracks she paints panoramas of and lays the cornerstone for her Utopian visions, for and by Black women. Two tracks are co-produced with teammate plus_c under their joint project SCRAAATCH, and another one together with Generation Bass favourite DJ Haram.

>> BUY HERE <<

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9. Compilation Japan Edition (Club Late Music)

Club Late Music is an exciting, relatively new, globe-spanning collective & label curated by 100% HALAL (Frankfurt), AZN Girl (Brussels), Bubbles (London), Dragon UMA (Yachiyo), Ideal Corpus (Marseille), Michel Ours (Paris), Prince Lucien (London) and T/B/O (Los Angeles). Their musical focus ingeniously connects the world of avant-garde club to the euphoric and kawaii flavoured sounds of retro-rave and nightcore – a combination that we will definitely see more in 2016. Earlier releases like the ‘Summer Hits Compilation‘ and their mixtape series have our radar unfortunately. But ‘Compilation Japan Edition’ is a perfect, much more diverse follow up that shows even more pronouncedly the forward looking direction in which this blend of music is paving the way for new developments this year and beyond. It probably got its name after the download-for-free-entrance promo for the club night at Lounge Neo in Tokyo, already three months ago. In the run-up to this party, it used to be downloadable via this interview on the Japanese music & culture webmagazine Public Rhythm, but the link is now broken. We’ll keep you updated about future releases!

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10. Abu AMA Riad Noir (hexx 9 Records)

Finally the debut album of Abu AMA, the producer whose absence of support from our blog for so long still puts me to shame. I recently called his unique ‘ArabXo’ sound, blending Middle Eastern music with tarraxo and mesmerising experimental dub, the most Generation Bass sound ever. But even more importantly, his engagement with Middle Eastern culture is far from a gimmick, either exoticising or demonising Arabic culture. Quite the opposite, his strong political message, weaven continuously into the titles as well as the compositions, is an incisive denouncement of the demonisation and fearmongering depiction of the Middle East, refugees and muslims in Western media and culture and a passionate cry for end to the vicious geopolitical destruction of the region. This is significant, especially considering the producer’s embedding in the dark ambient music scene, a world where harmful, othering exploitation of the fears from our collective prejudices can still be bread and butter.

‘Riad Noir’ (‘Black Garden’) contains 10 delicately produced tracks that show the full breadth and depth of Abu AMA’s style, released back in January broad multi-genre dark underground label hexx 9 Records, also home to a number of essential producers from the ‘new dark underground’ like Volkanos or Bedtime Stories.

>> BUY HERE <<

The Holy Fix live in the Mix

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The Holy Fix first came to my attention via the cosmic, progressive & psychedelic Technodelia EP release on the Bucharest based P-Balans label.  The ‘Black Rubber” track by The Holy Fix on that release just totally blew my mind and I went searching for more stuff by him but couldn’t find anything until now.

A wonderful 2 hour mix described as “Mindgames for Clubfloors and Living Rooms.” 

Taking in everything from Deep Disco, Dub, Acid and Psychedelia, this is a blistering and totally captivating 2 hour journey.

The Holy Fix will get you there, bass driven, heavily dubbed and truly psyched out. Music for tormented souls and deep introspections. Stay tuned for upcoming releases.

I, for one, will most definitely be keeping an eye on this dude and I’m salivating at the mouth at the prospect of what this dude is going to be dropping in the coming year, it’s going to be MIND-BLOWING.

THE LAST SACRIFICE – INSANE FENNEL APOCALYPSE REMIX

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A track from the forthcoming Epic Streamer “Walking with Camels” Ep/Album has just premiered on the Mad Decent website, go over there to check it out.

Insane Fennel gave The Last Sacrifice an Apocalyptic Wall of Bass Re-rub. There are a further 11 remixes to drop from producers from all over the world and this has been an exciting project and the results are pretty magnificent! The forthcoming EP/Album features an array of genre styles from current hot fave Gqom (Gome) through to 80’s Synthwave, Grime, Tribal, Vogue/Ballroom, Techno, Wobble, Neuro Funk, DnB, Acid, Jungle and Skweee.

You can check the original EP below and watch out for more news about the other remixes.

MOSILLATOR : MIRROR EP

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New DnB Bass EP from one of India’s finest Electronic producers taking in Neuro DnB vibes & marinated with spicey Indian and Arabic flavas.

Some of the tracks are already getting some rotaion on BBC Radio 6 Music.

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Catch a vid here and watch out for that Cat:

This dude started out with Generation Bass and is now playing at some major events in India:

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BIO:

Blending organic and electronic influences into something really special, MOSILLATOR takes bass music to the next level. Beyond steady wobbles and crazy sick bass lines, beyond hard hitting and mosh pit male energy, this is a seductive piece of work that destroys dance floors world wide.

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Check out this brilliant EP:

For bookings – [email protected]
Productions – [email protected]

@mosillator
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Artist  MOSILLATOR
Album Title  MIRROR
Genre  DnB
Release Date  13.04.16
Description  EP
Tracklist 1.MAKAH
2.CREEP
3.PLUCK
4.SNIFF
5.BUG BITE
Download stores Juno
Beatport
Amazon
Qobuz
iTunes
Deezer
Streaming services Spotify

Ya Tosiba – Mollah The Machine & Remixes

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This release was sent to me some time back by Center of the Universe, must have been close to 2 years ago and I just discovered that I never gave it any blog love, great music never dates and this deserves some shine, even if it’s belated.

You may have heard a couple of these tracks before if you’ve checked out my Arabtronix mixtapes.

This is Transnational Skweee much in the vein of our most recent Center of the Universe release “Never Mind the Boreks”.

Ya Tosiba is a Berlin-based duo producing bass-heavy riddims with energetic female vocals. On the mic we have Zuzu Zakaria, the versatile singer who uses mainly found, historical lyrics in her mother tongue Azeri. On synths and drum machines we have Mesak. The head of the fantastic Harmönia label has his roots in Finland, he is one of the pioneers of Scandinavian Skweee music.

Azeri for those that don’t know is the mother tongue of Azerbaijanis or Azeris, also known as Azerbaijani Turks – a Turkic ethnic group living mainly in Iranian Azerbaijan and the independent Republic of Azerbaijan.

There’s a bunch of remixes too and here’s what the label said about these:

Ya Tosiba are a Berlin based band connecting raw, funky syn- thetic rhythms with female vocals. Mesak is one of the pioneers of the scandinavian music genre called Skweee. The energy of his beats fits perfectly to Zuzu’s vocals in her mother tongue Azeri.

In summer 2014, Ya Tosiba have released the single “Mollah The Machine” on Pingipung which quickly sold out. Today Pin- gipung present three remixes of German artists, two of which are also released on a 7inch vinyl.

RSS Disco remix Maşin by Ya Tosiba. The DJ and producer trio from Hamburg focus on the bassline and make the synth pads shimmer. The original Ya Tosiba song is about the sudden appearance of cars in the streets of Baku in the 80s. It’s a more than perfect cruising track now!

Patric Catani aka Candie Hank mixes a hilarious, bouncing version of Molla, paying tribute to Zuzu’s funky meykhana vo- cals. This remix perfectly captures the hilarious, crazy qualities of the original and turns them into something huge.

Schlammpeitziger, the Cologne based veteran of electronica, finally adds his melodic genius to the same track, Molla. As shown on his album “What’s Fruit” on Pingipung in autumn 2014, he is never tired of adding just one more harmony or note to his disco production. The result is as always very charming and unexpectedly danceable.

MAJID AL ESA : BARBS – THE DANCE THAT HAS TAKEN THE ARAB WORLD BY STORM

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There’s a new dance in town that has taken the Arab world by storm and it’s called “The Barbs”.

As reported in the Washington Post:

CAIRO – If you live in the Arab world, you’ve probably seen the dance video by now.

You may have tried the moves at a club, or at a house party with friends. You may have even posted a video of yourself parodying the dance on social media, as countless young Arabs have done.

The “Barbs” is a certifiable hit in the Middle East. A fun mix of hip-hop and early 1980s-style break dancing melded with Arabic rhythms, the routine is performed by a bunch of young Saudis, including one wearing a dark suit and bright red high-top sneakers. Their video has gone viral.

“In a region that is often dealing with some kind of conflict and turmoil, it is no wonder that people seek ways to escape from the harsh realities of life by doing what many of us love to do: dance,” wrote Rym Ghazal, a columnist for the National, a newspaper based in Abu Dhabi. “I have to admit, at first I thought it a bit silly, but then I got into it and caught myself ‘barbsing.’”

The dance, which means “untidy” or “messy” in a Saudi dialect, was created by Majed al-Esa, an artist and director known for melding Saudi culture and diction with a Western style. The dance actually starts little more than halfway through the video when the youth in the red shoes says “Put your foot like this” in Arabic. He then shuffles the other foot, tilts his back back and wriggles sideways, bobbing his head like an ostrich to the song, which some say sounds a lot like “Bring It Back” by Travis Porter.

But like many aspects of free expression in the Middle East, there are unforeseen consequences: Take the two poor souls in Abu Dhabi who danced the Barbs while wearing military uniforms, and then uploaded it on social media sites. The Abu Dhabi government didn’t look at it kindly – and swiftly served an arrest warrant for them and took them to court. They were charged with disrespecting the military uniform and the national army. You can seethe video that got them into trouble here.

The dance has also triggered the ire of conservative columnists and critics of social media in Saudi Arabia. Some describe the video as proof of how Western influences are spoiling their society. They have publicly urged a boycott of the dance and demanded that authorities arrest the performers for their “indecent” moves.

“Some added an Arabic hashtag that translates to ‘don’t make stupid people famous,’ ” Ghazal noted in her column.

Here’s more videos of the dance going viral-ish:

Bazoga – Schengen (DimmiT mix)

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The brilliant Moroccan duo Salim & Tayeb Bayri aka Bazoga are back with a new track featuring the kind of sounds that are totally unique to them and which we love so much here at Generation Bass.

This track is a progressive one in 5 movements which they call GALIZI MOVEMENT TRAB MUSIC!

This is mind-blowing!  I just wish they made music more often, like on a daily basis!

You can still grab their awesome EP we released for free which includes that STUNNING cover of Die Antwoord’s “Diz iz why i’m hot”:

P-Balans Vol. 1 Technodelia

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Totally blown away by this forthcoming release on a new label from Bucharest named P-Balans which sets out to combine cosmic, progressive & psychedelic sounds with a Techno backdrop.

It’s from the amazing minds who are behind the Future Nuggets label and this is their new imprint. Here’s what they say about it:

“P-Balans is a new imprint in the Future Nuggets emerging constellation. A technodelia ramification within the Bucharest electronic scene that will host rising names like Khidja and Borusiade while introducing new characters like The Holy Fix and Utopus. Keeping the same strategies of fusion and diffusion as Future Nuggets, P-Balans will explore the space traversal to techno, entering and exiting the dark halls of the club through multiple doors.”

This whole EP opens up a brand new world of cosmic journeying and I’m vibing to this kind of sound big time!

You can hear some snippets from the impending release which is what I imagine Pink Floyd would sound like if they ever dare to foray into the dance world full-time:

Sounds of the Unheard from Romania volume 2

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We covered the first volume a few years ago and sadly we slept on the second volume which came out about a year ago.

“Future Nuggets was constructed by a group of Romanian producers, diggers and musicians in their search for a local psychedelic scene informed by the past but made for the times to come. Whether we unearth a jewel directly from the past or we manufacture our own present-day hybrids, we aim to explore the same universal sound skins and global grooves that have accompanied, seduced and finally formed our sonic psychic.”

The second volume is really spaced out, cosmic, psychedelic stuff which would beautifully augment the score for the forthcoming Bladerunner sequel.

I’m really loving a lot of this and here’s what they say about it.

Future Nuggets unveils its second compilation “Sounds of the unheard from Romania”. We bring to the surface another collection of intense tracks gathered from the contemporary margins of the international world, the deep south-east.

The border area has been as fertile as ever, the cross influences around the Danube ebbed to the shores of Bucharest and merged into a body with many names.  This is a new beginning in many ways but as always in the Outernational realm, the future is never reliable. Although the vaults of the periphery are endless they are out of sync with the music industry of today, so future archeologists are in for a treat with this record and others soon to be launched by Future Nuggets .