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Ryan Hemsworth Collabs With Lucas On 'Angel'

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Canadian producer Ryan Hemsworth is known best for a wavey, up-beat style of electronic music based around gaming and other creative digital samples. Now he's taken it back a step, and teamed up with Lucas to release a slow-burner instrumental called 'Angel' based around some echoey percussive sounds and soft guitar chords. When you add in the cute choral harmonies it's a unique piece of work, and really shows how much talent is present when two producers of such high calibre work together.

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11 Acts That Could Play Listen Out 2015

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Australia's boutique touring festival Listen Out is set to return in 2015 after two massive years. In 2013, its inaugural event was headlined by Disclosure and last year they brought Flume back home for his only shows in Australia in 2014. The lineup is set to drop Tuesday 16 June from midday and with no leaks so far it's going to be a (hopefully) great surprise. Here's a few acts that we reckon might be heading our way for the festival.

Disclosure

This British duo headlined the festival's first ever event in 2013 and since then they have been back twice more. Disclosure obviously love Australia and with a new record on the way it seems only natural that they would return to their old stomping grounds. Unfortunately the festival clashes with Austin City Limits at the beginning of October, meaning they would have to do some really tricky manoeuvring in order to play both. But technically they could play the final day of Listen Out in Brisbane and be in the US for the final day of ACL in the nick of time.

Hudson Mohawke

HudMo was here at the beginning of the year but way back then we had no idea he was about to drop a full-length album. That record, Lanterns, came out at the end of last week and is just screaming to be played to a festival audience. With an emphasis on interesting but accessible dance music Listen Out seems like the perfect setting for Mohawke to unleash his euphoric, pulsating music. His schedule says yes and so do we, so let's make it happen. He's also well acquainted with the festival as he's played before with Lunice as TNGHT.

EDIT: Well that was short-lived. He's just confirmed he's playing Laneway.

Jamie xx

Jamie xx was also here at the start of the year for Falls Festival but at that stage, he hadn't released his brilliant debut album In Colour and Australia deserves the chance to celebrate that release with him. He has a suspicious Listen Out-sized gap between his European and US tour which would give him plenty of time to play a few shows and enjoy the sights for a week or two. The only issue is if he is up for another Australian visit so soon after his last. But, then again, he played Laneway in 2014 and came back at the end of that year.

Hot Chip

They're a little more established than the usual acts that Listen Out books but they fit the genre-mould perfectly. Hot Chip have just released their latest LP Why Make Sense? and are begging for an Australian festival to show it off at. There is a gap in their schedule that says they would be able to come down-under but maybe it's just the time that most artists take a mini-break. Who knows?

ILoveMakonnen

Australia has already had the chance to sing-put ILoveMakonnen's mega-hit Tuesday with Drake when he toured with Future Music but we need the chance to tip our hats to the original artist. This US newcomer has been treading a perfect line between straight-up hip-hop and electronic styles so he'd be a perfect fit for Listen Out. The only problem is whether or not there is enough demand for him or not. There's also no Listen Out events scheduled for a Tuesday so that might pose a problem.

Ryan Hemsworth

It's been a while since we've seen Canadian producer Ryan Hemsworth tour the country. Since he was here last, he's released his sophomore album Alone For The First Time and churned out gold with his Soundcloud label Secret Sounds. He's a sure-fire winner for the festival and one that's very well acquainted with the Australian dance-music fan. His schedule shows he's got nothing better to do so why not come to us?

SOPHIE

This enigmatic British producer was in the country in December last year for a few shows but a major touring festival would be the best place to introduce his brand of saccharine electronica to a wider-audience. Booking SOPHIE would be a really interesting choice for Listen Out and one that shows that they're willing to push the boundaries a little. SOPHIE is booked to play in France on the first date of Listen Out but surely we could come to some kind of agreement?

George Maple

Like Chet Faker was when Listen Out booked him last year, George Maple is Future Classic's big push at the moment. She's proved herself with a run of stellar dates around the country earlier this year and has more than enough material now to entertain with a classy afternoon set. Australia is in need of a pop queen with a foot in the dance world and Maple is ready to fill that slot. She's a no brainer if Listen Out are looking for the best Australian talent.

Hermitude

Hermitude look set to be the Aussies that turn up on every festival bill this year. There's a reason for that too. They are a sure-fire winner when it comes to pleasing crowds and with a new album just released, they've got plenty of new material to keep things exciting. They fit the aesthetic of Listen Out to a tee and would easily pack out the mainstage, book-ended by international acts.

Tink

If Listen Out are really looking to please us, they will book Timbaland's latest protégé Tink. Her single Ratchet Commandments has been doing the rounds at triple j and would surely gain more momentum if she had an Australian tour on the horizon. If her Fader Fort set at SXSW showed anything it's that she's a fierce, relentless performer and she'd bring it to the stage down-under. Her schedule looks to be pretty free - it just depends if she's too busy wrapping up that debut album of hers.

Rudimental

Australia fell in love with these Brits when they released their debut album Home in 2013. Rudimental are going to drop their sophomore LP We The Generation in September and Listen Out would be the perfect place to unleash it upon an Australian audience. As I write this they're tearing up the Bonnaroo stage. There's no doubt that they know how to work a festival stage and they may even make an appropriate Listen Out headliner.

Ten Walls

Only kidding. Mardi Gras 2016 would've snapped him up long ago.

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Ryan Hemsworth Unveils The Sexiest Song Of His Secret Songs Project Yet

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If you haven't been living under a rock this year, you may be privy to the fact that Canadian producer Ryan Hemsworth has been dropping free tracks by his favourite, up-and-coming artists by way of his Secret Songs project. The latest free download is by Philadelphia producer, Moon Bounce, who's delivered up this bubbling, sexy number, Body, apparently written "to celebrate my lady’s body and worship carnal desire." It's followed the perfect recipe for a sexy song too with pulsating beats, lingering synths and smooth vocals. Get ready to jam-out.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/shhsecretsongs/shh016-moon-bounce-body[/soundcloud]

 

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First Impressions: Klo., Tourist, Ryan Hemsworth + More

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First Impressions is an interns roundtable review of songs on their first (or second) listen. Each week we review six new songs from the past week, each giving them a score out of five and awarding our pick of the week. Today we pick apart tracks by Klo., Tourist, Little Simz, Joseph Marinetti, Royal + Ryan Hemsworth. 

Klo.- Under Lie

Sam: I have really liked everything that Klo. have put out but I’ve been waiting for something to smack me in the face. This is most definitely that, thank goodness. Chloe Kaul (vocalist) just sounds smokey and seductive with an extra confidence we haven’t heard before. It’s just like a big warm hug this, with its steamy drums and lush synths. 4

Hannah: Chloe Kaul. I mean seriously. Can I just listen to her forever? I disagree with Sam though. While Kaul really stands out for me here it’s almost to the detriment of the rest of the song. This is a seriously big fish in a seriously small pond. Jump out and play with the big kids Chloe, you’ve got big things waiting for you. 3.5

Bianca: Klo. have always churned out deliciously minimalist melodies but this is the first time I’ve heard something with a bit of ‘oomph’ coming out of the cousin duo. Chloe’s husky voice shines over the delicate percussion, which marries beautifully into the dreamy synths. The only thing lacking here is more of a crescendoing climax. 3.5

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/klomusic/underlie[/soundcloud]

Tourist- Illuminate (Feat. Years & Years)

Sam: I think Tourist could be onto a chart winner with this one, in the UK at least. It follows that style-of-the-moment with a flickering dance beat and a soulful vocalist to drive it along. Years & Years’ vocals are almost on par with Sam Smith for me and really help this song revel as a shimmering, after-dark number. It’s not the most revolutionary thing I’ve ever heard but it’s pretty hard to pick a reason why I don’t like it. 3.5

Hannah: There’s a hangover from that time when top 40-ites tried to do electro Dub swirling in layered beats of Tourist’s latest offering. Which, while not necessarily a bad thing, does mean that, like most of the chart-inclined it’s just a little bit... vanilla. The “soulful” vocals are more blah than ballad, the glitches aren’t quite glitchy enough, and the running pulse is headed straight for a flatline. I actually really don’t like this at all. 1

Bianca: I don't hate it but I don't love it. This one lies straight down the middle for me. 3

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/touristmusic/illuminate[/soundcloud]

Little Simz- Time Capsule

Sam: I usually really hate these retrospective rap songs. They’re very Eminem circa 2000 and always sound a little whiny, but I’m very much on board with Time Capsule. It’s probably because Little Simz and Jakwob go so hard from the second verse that it’s more a tale or rising up rather than being beaten down. Simz sounds like what Angel Haze should've on her whole debut. Fierce, impassioned and confident. 4

Hannah: Well here’s a lesson in indecision. I’m sure if each line of this track were fleshed out into its own song, the three would have a complex and interesting album on their hands, as it is though, there’s just too much going on in the brief 3 minutes and 34 seconds to really grab a hold of any of it. 2

Bianca: This is a bit of a confusing one. Little Simz’s spit of the tongue commands your entire attention, with little else making way in between her grittiness. By the time 1:19 rolled around, though, I was enveloped in track’s rawness and trap undertones, which reminded me slightly of Robyn’s Monument. If only it continued down this path. I’m not really taking to the soulful breakdown courtesy of Caitlyn Scarlett; it completely throws me off my groove. More of 1:19-1:53, please, and a bit less of everything else. 2.5

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/littlesimz/little-simz-jakwob-time-capsule-ft-caitlyn-scarlett[/soundcloud]

Joseph Marinetti- Ms Telesales

Sam: What’s going on now with this whole PC Music take on electronica is almost incomprehensible. Everything about this is completely bizarre, from the slow-motion video to the carnevale synths and rave beat. It’s lucky I’m completely on board with this style, it’s exciting, bright and boundary-pushing. I don’t think it’s appeal ends there though, the vocal sample just melts in your ears. 4

Hannah: It’s becoming apparent that by the time I have children, these will be the samples featured on their Fisher Price light up xylophone.... It’s a good thing that’s at least 5 years of mental preparation away. 2

Bianca: I like to think of Hey QT as the Rosetta Stone of PC Music; it allowed me to finally understand the hype of the curiously kitsch phenomena and I can actually enjoy the melodies made of bleeps and bloops and inhuman vocals reminiscent of Siri through a chipmunk voice changer. Don’t take that as me completely understanding the purpose of the movement though. Whether it be revolutionary or a complete inside joke that has the PC Music creators taking us for a ride, I’m happy just sitting here and enjoying it for whatever it is. Ms Telesales, with its cutesy vocals and plonky computer synths, is no different. It’s a boppy, vibrant number with its obscure video clip acting as the cherry on top for me. 3.75

Royal- Round Two (Feat. Desktop)

Sam: I love this marriage that’s happened between hip-hop and electronic music a la Four Tet and Rome Fortune. This is cool. Desktop’s verses are quite composed and standard, which is beautifully juxtaposed by the perky beat that Royal lays down. Erring very close to Drake, but it’s fine. We’ll let them off just this one time. 3

Hannah: I wish this sounded more like Drake. 2.5

Bianca: This sounds like it should belong on a soundtrack to a GTA and Mario Kart hybrid game. Which is a very good thing in my books, by the way. While I wait for Rockstar Games and Nintendo to get started on my dream, I’m just going to go back to Soundcloud and partake in Round Two of this track. 3.5  

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/royalmakesmusic/round-two-feat-desktop[/soundcloud]

Ryan Hemsworth- Walk Me Home

Sam: BRB, I’m just going to go and get my third tissue box. Hemsworth’s use of actually live instrumentation here works perfectly. When the orchestral section kicks in, it’s literally as if somebody grabs your heart. It’s so minimal and seemingly unwavering but those sharp waves of emotion just make the ride so much more interesting. 4.5 Sam’s Pick

Hannah: Ryan Hemsworth is the Patron Saint of all I do so it’s not surprising that this slow burn, lofty offering is one of perfection as far as I’m concerned. Please, show me a better example of synthy punctated vulnerability colliding with brute strength bass or a more perfect marriage of Japanese tinkerings and orchestral samples. That slight crescendo rising just below Hemsworth’s repetition of never leave me alone, pure chills. 4 Hannah’s Pick

Bianca: Ryan Hemsworth has this knack for making delicate melodies that sound like they have come straight out of a music box. The glittering synths wash beautifully throughout the string samples, with the plucking strings mirror the tugging of my heart strings, which gives Walk Me Home an almost epic movie-like quality. I could turn the key to this music box all night long. 4 Bianca’s Pick

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8 Reasons Why Ryan Hemsworth Is One Of The Most Important Producers Right Now

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Canadian producer Ryan Hemsworth has just released his second album Alone For The First Time, so we thought it would be nice to gush over him for a bit and look at where he sits in the world of producers right now.

1. He doesn't attach to a clique

All you have to do is look at who is supporting Hemsworth on his ‘Sucker For Punishment’ tour to see how far and wide his admiration for electronic musicians stretches. Like many genres, electronic music has a tendency to place artists in a certain group or collective. The artists feature on each others tracks, nurture each other and inevitably churn out releases that sound similar. It’s not a bad thing, but part of Hemsworth’s charm is that he’s hard to place in a pre-determined group. He’s worked with Aussie producer, UV Boi, Japanese beatmaker, Qrion and has tracks on his latest album with Doss, The GTW, Little Cloud and many more. There’s hardly a common thread you can tie between them apart from Hemsworth himself.

2. He's diverse

If you were following Hemsworth’s releases in the lead up to the new album, you may have been blindsided by Alone For The First Time. Cream Soda with Tomggg was full of candied sounds while Gods with UV Boi was a profound, iphone-sound borrowing track. Even Every Square Inch with Qrion, the most similar to the album, is far more dancefloor ready than anything on the sophomore album.

Turn from that to his remixes and you’ve got a completely different Hemsworth. His remix of Beyonce’s Mine is industrial and hard-hitting while his take on Future’s Honest, is a subtle, minimalist affair. It’s easy to forget even, that some of his early tracks like Day N Nite, had him pinned as a hip-hop/RnB producer. So, what do we learn from this? Hemsworth is a product of the internet generation - a producer who is consuming a lot of music and just like trends is constantly changing his mind. He told Dummymag, “I don’t think I’m ever going to be able to fully create one single, consistent sound… which I hope is a good thing...There is a short shelf life for a lot of sounds”

3. He’s not afraid to have fun

Alone For The First Time and to some extent, Guilt Trips are heavy listens. It’s more easily listened to knowing that the producer behind them is not afraid to have a little fun. His bouncing remix of the Backstreet Boys’ Show Me The Meaning, sampling Amanda Bynes still stands as one of his most impressive outputs.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/i-d-online-1/show-me-the-meaning-of-being[/soundcloud]

4. His instagram game is top notch

This is clearly the most important point. You can’t be an important producer if you don’t have an instagram with plenty of good shit on it. Good shit, Hemsworth has. It’s an instagram full of Pokemon, ironic selfies and travelling tidbits. Oh and shoes, plenty of cool shoes.

Basically, it just makes you like the guy. So many electronic producers remain enigmatic or become bitter and fan-shy, but Hemsworth is none of those things. He’s present, funny and a little dorky.

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5. He gives new producers a leg-up

All that social media presence, actually puts Hemsworth in a good position to spruik new music. Earlier this year he started his Secret Songs project which sees him release new music for free by new artists that he loves. For six months, he’s dropped songs by the likes of Tennyson, Ricky Eat Acid, Lucas, Little Cloud and more. And for many, giving them widespread exposure for the first time. Hemsworth writes a spiel about the song, as does the artist and then it’s dropped for free on the public.

“I have a following and people like my taste for whatever reason”, he told THUMP, further telling Dummymag that “it’s just trying to bring them [the producers] into the world that aren’t really in that much at the moment.” In that way, he is using his following to give exposure to artists that are still based on the internet - plucking them into the real world and exposing great but undiscovered music. Many of the artists are now touring alongside him.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/shhsecretsongs/sets/shh-ffb6c1[/soundcloud]

6. He has his eyes on Japan where they should be

Japan is one of the most interesting countries for electronic music right now and Hemsworth is suitably fascinated. He told THUMP before even visiting the country, “I’m pretty in love with most things Japan. I was put onto a lot of Japanese horror movies when I was 13 by my older cousin, and just got obsessed with that. To me, I’m fully romanticising that world”.

Like fellow Japan-enthusiast, Porter Robinson, Hemsworth has a way of borrowing that Japanese aesthetic for his own songs. They have solemn, saddening undertones with perky, plastic synths layered on top. It’s mixing those two things just like anime does in juxtaposing its visual with the message.

He recently wrote a brilliant piece for The Fader on his trip to Japan. It tracks the experience of playing and getting by in a country where they don’t speak his language. He met Qrion, Tofubeats, Pa’s Lam System and Seiho, to name a few, and openly expressed, “I suck compared to these guys”. What’s most interesting is they can barely communicate with eachother because of the language barrier but are able to come together musically, with the help of a little alcohol. FYI, Qrion outdrinks Hemsworth.

7. He’s eloquent in the way he speaks of electronic music

An ambasador for anything, needs to be able to state their case. Hemsworth has given copious interviews over the course of his career. Here are a few of the most poignant things he’s said about electronic music.

“If you create a new sound, you’re top of the world for a minute, and then the next sound is the new thing.” - Dummymag

“...from a young age, I got really into discovering music—that magical feeling when you find something new. Still to this day, every day, I have that. It's what keeps me going when playing at shows playing new songs. It's always such a fresh feeling.” - Interview

“I'm still lumped into the electronic music world, which is totally a part of me. I'm booked for club shows and festivals and stuff, but I want to make music that's a bit outside of that world. I want to make music that's a little bit of everything.” Red Bull

8. His new album is spellbinding

I mean, really, you gotta hear it. Alone For The First Time is an expansive, emotional record that sees Hemsworth play around with life instrumentation and pull in artists that he’s admired for a while including Little Cloud, Dawn Golden and The GTW.

It’s a short, compact record but one that packs a real punch. Opener Hurt Me, is an orchestral heartwrencher, while closer By Myself, is an ode to being alone and one that sounds as profound as any words uttered by Gil Scott-Heron. In between, Hemsworth flips between showing influences like The Postal Service (Snow In Newark) to showing his admiration for Japanese electronica (Surrounded).

It’s a record that sees Hemsworth step out as an artist rather than a bedroom producer. It may be at times sad and lonely, but altogether it’s a heartwarming listen, finessed with love and care.

You can buy it if you like. Here.

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Download Ryan Hemsworth's latest Secret Song: Missing Peace

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Ryan Hemsworth introduced us to his first compilation of Secret Songs, a spotlight of his ten favourite songs at the time, last month and now the Canadian producer has released another secret song, Missing Peace, by Dream Beach. 

Dream Beach has noted the song was, "originally composed as a gift for someone special to me. It's supposed to emulate the feeling I get when she calls me in the morning." Set your alarm clocks as this shimmering track transports you from the land of Nod, to the bed, to the beach, and everywhere in between.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/shhsecretsongs/shh011-dream-beach-missing-peace[/soundcloud]

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Stream Ryan Hemsworth's entire Secret Songs compilation + new single, 'Snow in Newark'

ryanhemsworthRyan Hemsworth has been busy overnight, releasing the first single from his second studio album as well as the entirety of his Secret Songs compilation. The former, titled Snow In Newark, is a collaboration with Mad Decent's Dawn Golden and is a softer, more sentimental offering from the Canadian producer. Although more subdued than previous works, it still features his signature Japanese-inspired percussion, creating a sound similar to a wind-up jewellery box. Hemsworth has said to Vogue that his upcoming, self-proclaimed "happysad (one word, no spaces)" album is "about trying to get back to my first love, emo music.”

This release has also coincided with the debut of Hemsworth's full Secret Sounds compilation, #ffb6c1, a spotlight of ten of his favourite songs at the moment. You may have heard Swick, Lewis Cancut and Tkay Maidza's Wishes on the collection a few weeks ago and now the complete set has been made available. Featuring Kero Kero Bonito and et aliae, it's a colourful, kawaii collection of cheeky, quirky melodies. Stream both Snow In Newark and #ffb6c1 below or experience the latter in its full glory over at its dedicated website.

FUN FACT: #ffb6c1 denotes a light pink colour on the RGB colour space. Hopefully this means there will be some more hues on the horizon.

 

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week

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Quality over quantity they say, but it seems we've been able to enjoy both recently. BIGSOUND delivered us a plethora of great new Aussie talent, SBTRKT offered up not one, but two new songs and Tkay Maidza has seemingly dropped about seven albums worth of material recently. Here at the interns we also believe in quality and quantity and that's why we're serving up not one, not five but 10 songs you need to hear this week.

SBTRKT- Higher (Feat. Raury)

SBTRKT's Wonder Where We Land is only weeks away from release already we've heard four tracks from it. The latest, Higher, features much-hyped Atlanta artist Raury, who lays down some masterful verses before a triumphant chorus. Raury is great but the hero of this track is the British producers instrumentation. The lightly laid-on triumphant-synth in the chorus takes us to the club and to church in the same moment.

TĀLĀ- Black Scorpio

British producer/singer TĀLĀ's latest delivery, Black Scorpio, feels like four songs in one. It goes from a Mission Impossible-like beginning into a triumphant, trumpet-synth which elevates the song to a new level. It's the first time we've heard her solely focus on the instrumentation and as such she establishes herself as a formidable songwriter as well as a finessed producer.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/black-scorpio[/soundcloud]

SAFIA- You Are The One 

Canberra trio SAFIA are riding a wave of success at the moment of the back of Paranoia, Ghosts & Other Sounds and it's most likely set to continue with the release of You Are The One. You Are The One kicks off with a brooding, piano-led verse which sees lead-vocalist, Ben Woolner-Kirkham, show off his incredible vocal chops. The beat eventually kicks in but none of the magic is lost as the instrumental heads straight for the stars. Strap yourself in.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/safia-music/you-are-the-one[/soundcloud]

Ryan Hemsworth- Difficulties (Feat. Trim)

It seems every week we are talking about Hemsworth. Whether he's releasing other people's music through his Secret Songs series or just dropping his own stuff, just cos. Difficulties sees him team up with British Grime artist Trim who puts down a strangely melodic rap that is softened by Hemsworth's gentle instrumental. For a track that has a lyric like, "hung like a horse, scuba-dick" it's actually quite affecting. Good work Hemmy and scuba-dick.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/djoneman99/ryan-hemsworth-feat-trim-difficulties-taken-from-solitaire-vol3[/soundcloud]

Becky Hill- Losing

Becky Hill is mostly known as the vocalist on Rudimental's Powerless but know she's stepping out on her own, with Losing marking her official arrival to the pop spectrum. Losing is a soulful, MNEK-produced number that is more of a groove-inducer than a fist-pumper. It has a massive final chorus with layered vocals and dense synths making it almost impossible not to dance. BRB, we're gonna go boogie.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/becky-hill-official/losing-3[/soundcloud]

JONES- Deep

From one pop-newcomer to another, Deep is the first taste from British artist JONES and it's groovy-looped affair. It's been produced by Jai Paul's brother Anup, who's probably the only person who knows what the hell Jai Paul is doing right now. That aside, he does a brilliant job here holding JONES' hand with mellow undertones. The Solange-influence is very prominent, but hey, there's room for two in this elevator.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/iseejones/deep-2[/soundcloud]

Kilter- They Say (Feat. Tkay Maidza)

At this point we may aswell turn this site into a Tkay Maidza fansite. The Adelaide rapper has been churning out tracks at a rapid rate recently and this latest track comes courtesy of fellow Australian, producer Kilter. Kilter has already released They Say without vocals on it but this version sees Maidza jump on the track and lay down soulful vocals that see her sing rather than rap. It takes the already brilliantly anarchic track to another level and once again we find ourselves saying bow down bitches - Tkay is in the house.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/kilterbeats/they-say-feat-tkay-maidza-1[/soundcloud]

FKA Twigs- Stay With Me

We've heard plenty of covers of Sam Smith's Stay With Me as its become the year's Adele Someone Like Me, but Twigs' one is particularly different. She's never been one to do things by the book and this cover is a left-of-centre, late night re-work. At times the original song is almost unrecognisable as she picks and chooses lyrics and cuts up the song structure. The result is an arresting, illuminated version.

Flight Facilities- Two Bodies (Feat. Emma Louise)

Two Bodies is the first single to come from Flight Facilities long-time coming LP, Down To Earth and it's a surprisingly demure affair which recruits Emma Louise on vocals. The video does the best job of explaining the songs charm. Two pale figures dance around in a dark room, sliding in and out of each others embrace, quite like the way Louise effortlessly slips her vocals into a soundscape built from unobtrusive beats and windy synths.

Seekae- Monster

Seekae's latest album, The Worry has just been released via Future Classic and with it they announced the next single from it, Monster. Monster is perhaps their biggest departure from a predominantly electronic aesthetic. Gentle guitars accompany a delicate, brooding vocal that's eventually joint by jabs of brass. As the title would suggest, it's a little bit creepy but it's also one of the best offerings we've heard from new-era, Seekae.

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8 songs that sound like they're from Pokemon

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To many, Pokemon dominated much of their childhood. From the TV to the gameboy to trading cards, it was pretty hard to escape the loveable creatures and their carers/battlers Ash, Brock and Misty. Of course, it was all about Pikachu but then there was Bulbasaur, Squirtle and the dark-horse of the bunch (the best), Jigglypuff. Jigglypuff herself was a fan of a bit of a psychedelic tune, years before she knew that Pokemon and the wider anime genre would be influencing music.

We touched on this recently in a series on Japanese music we wrote for THUMP and today we continue to look at the influence of Japan and anime on electronic music by looking at eight songs that could’ve soundtracked the video game or the show. Grab your Pokeballs (iPods), ‘cos you gotta catch em’ all.

Ryan Hemsworth- Cream Soda

Canadian producer, Hemsworth is the ultimate Pokemon fan. He has a collection of Pokemon cuddly toys and makes Pikachu a regular feature of his Instagram. It makes sense then that his music has a distinctly Japanese feel to it. Cream Soda sounds like Ash and Pikachu catching Pokemon together in happier times, when Pikachu was at full force and escapading around lush grasses. The song’s starry synths, while feeling content, sound like they’re fully aware that there is something around the corner.

pikachu

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/ryanhemsworth/cream-soda-with-tomggg[/soundcloud]

Macross x Yung Bae- Selfish High Heels

The Pokemon theme song was a rock-ballad of mighty proportions. Sounding like a combination of Journey and Foreigner it was one of the most inspiring tunes of the ‘90s. Portland producer, Yung Bae retains that aesthetic, combining American film influences with Japanese anime to deliver a ‘90s-inspired disco ballad. The song is funky, cartoonish and full of big, bold vocals just like the Pokemon theme song. It may sound like an odd combination but it’s one that reflects the popular mesh between American and Japanese styles in electronic music.

xxxy- Clocks

Just like Jigglypuff’s sleep-inducing concert, this track by British producer xxxy has hypnotic qualities. Its synths swirl and sparkle over top a throbbing beat that never quite climaxes. As such, the song circles around your head in a calming but ultimately destructive manner. Visually, it induces that sfumato style of anime where the lines between reality and dreams are slightly blurred as a town is taken over by the ultimate diva, Jigglypuff.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/xxxy/clocks[/soundcloud]

Tomggg- Hello, Goodbye

Tomggg is a Japanese producer and thus from Pokemon’s birthplace so it makes sense that he would be channeling some serious Pokevibes. This track takes The Beatles' Hello Goodbye out of perfectly constructed pop-rock territory and into an 8-bit video game world. Imagine this as the feeling you get after just beating the ultimate Mewtew. The chopped and screwed vocals create musical rainbows with the tempo-raising beat creating a triumphant feel. You finally did it Pika, you finally did it.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/tomggg/hello-goodbye[/soundcloud]

Pas Lam System- Like A Lady

Pas Lam System is another Japanese producer who is making trap-influenced, battle-ready music. At times it’s anxious, full of plastic beats and dense, starry synths while at other times it freezes in time, suspended by lengthened notes. Watch this over any Pokemon battle scene and you’ll understand why Like A Lady is an important addition for any Pokemon-soundalike collector. Also, speaking of battle, can we take a moment to remember Team Rocket and their pesky cat, Meowth? As far as villains go, they are one of the most memorable girl-boy-cat combos. The high-paced flighty nature of this song says one thing, “Team Rocket blastttinnnggg offff againnnnnnnn”.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/paslamsystem/pas-lam-system-like-a-lady[/soundcloud]

DJ Sad Anime- I Love You, So I Want To Kill You

DJ Sad Anime, as the name would suggest, is creating music that is born in a hyper-real world of anime and cartoons. This mix, I Love You, So I Want To Kill You basically typifies the underlying relationship between Ash and Pikachu. In every episode, Pikachu was in grave danger during battle with some of the Pokeworld heavyweights and if you can imagine putting your dog to battle like that every day/week, it would have been horrifying for Ash. Musically, this mix captures that feeling. The kawaii cuteness of Pikachu is recreated through high-pitched vocals while the possible-death is captured by atmospheric, slow-motion beats.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/lolilolipopthatbody/ilu[/soundcloud]

GRISFX- It’s Not Right To Battle Pokemon That Way

So horrifying was it for Ash to send Pikachu to battle that Brocky finally realised that it’s not right to force Pokemon to battle. Belgium-producer, GRISFX, captures this moment perfectly, sampling the narrative from the first Pokemon movie and laying it over a dark, string-driven instrumental that actually tugs at the heartstrings. Of course, the show continued to force Pokemon to battle because, without it, the franchise was at a loss.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/musicgrey/its-not-right-to-force-pokemon-to-battle-this-way[/soundcloud]

Porter Robinson- Fellow Feeling

One of the saddest moments of TV was watching Sally leave Home and Away, but the second saddest moment is when Ash momentarily farewelled Pikachu so that he could be with his own kind. That was soundtracked by the song Pikachu’s Goodbye and while it is extremely affecting, I can’t help but feel this Porter song would’ve been a better fit. Tear-inducing strings, tick. Layered instruments, tick. A dub-step-inspired breakdown, tick. Maybe the last one is unnecessary but Porter is clearly in tune with the hyper sadness that Japanese anime brings and this track is about as heart-wrenchingly epic as they come.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/oneangryfatman-1/porter-robinson-fellow-feeling-new-album-worlds[/soundcloud]

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