Kaytranada’s Boiler Room Set (Montreal)

Dancing at a live show can feel awkward. When you introduce a camera into the equation, things can get even worse. People clutch their drinks. Body movements get more rigid. You can practically see self-awareness locking up people’s limbs.

But not Kaytranada’s 2103 Boiler Room set in Montreal, which runs like a low budget play, aimless and strange but refreshingly unpredictable.

We open with a man’s desperate attempt to dance with the girl in multi-clored jeans hiked up to her waist. She smiles shyly and then pushes him away. Other club-goers move forward for their moment in the spotlight. There are costumes. An impressive wizards staff (beers stacked to 6 or 7). And a mix of sweating dudes and seductive woman, all shifting in and out of view.

Maybe it’s Kaytranada. Maybe it’s the booze. Whatever it is, it’s a Boiler Room classic and deserves a re-visit.

Watch the full version here.

Movies, Deep Cuts, Francois, George Fitzgerald, Music For Thought, The Waiting, Full Circle, Debut, Boxed In, Lawrence Hart, Soundtracks, The Aftermath Muzak,

George Fitzgerald – The Waiting (feat. Lawrence Hart)

George Fitzgerald’s debut album, Fading Love, is careering and moody. While the sound and temperament of the songs are consistent, many of the tracks are instrumental, which places the album in the choppy waters of the soundtrack genre.

Some movies have memorable soundtracks, where a particular song or suite of songs, evoke acute memories for a specific film and the time(s) and place(s) we watched them. Drive, The Darjeeling Limited and Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid, come to mind for that reason. Yet, removed from their original contexts, movie soundtracks become adaptable, translated as the background music for deep concentration or travel.

No doubt, Fading Love has many of those qualities. The lead single, “Full Circle (feat. Boxed In), is a well-balanced, mid-tempo, blend of synthesizer pops and drumming over which a skulking voice broods about heartbreak. Maybe someone should cast it in the next sci-fi love story à la Her or Ex Machina.

Like many of Fitzgerald’s songs, “The Waiting” is driven by a scaling melody, that is, neither complicated nor over-produced. Not quite as pop-sensitive as Disclosure or as overwhelming as Caribou, George Fitzgerald has created a more somnambulistic sound. Though I’m unsure whether it’s the stuff of summer festivals, his songs should be a presence on your Deep Cuts playlist.

Gayngs – The Gaudy Side of Town (Live)

Last to the concert gets a bad seat. How come, in this age of overshare and well-populated search engines, do I still get to good bits of news late? Then again, I could of sworn I was listening to 10cc. Maybe it’s the ghost in the machine? Whatever it is, Gayngs, which indeed sounds ethereal, ghost-like at times, was worth ‘discovering’.

Gayngs is one out Justin Vernon’s many bands. The term side-project may not do the man justice, for, unlike his friend and collaborator Kanye West, Vernon has scuttled his main project and looks to venture into new musical acts so long as they feel right.

As such, best known from his high-pitched goodness as Bon Iver, Vernon left that identity in 2012, telling as much to Rolling Stone:

I look at it like a faucet. I have to turn it off and walk away from it because so much of how that music comes together is subconscious or discovering. There’s so much attention on the band, it can be distracting at times. I really feel the need to walk away from it while I still care about it. And then if I come back to it – if at all – I’ll feel better about it and be renewed or something to do that.

Previous and concurrent acts Vernon has been associated with include, in no particular order: Shouting Matches, Volcano Choir, Bon Iver, Eau Claire Jazz Memorial Ensemble, DeYarmond Edison & Mount Vernon. Robert Durst didn’t even have that many alibis.

Now, Gayngs which some may describe as a mega group, seems more like a collaborative act to me if we focus on Vernon’s role in the music. Vernon, who appears fond of 80s sounds — see “Beth/Rest” and The Outfield cover Bon Iver played of  “Your Love” — hits the soft noise and electronic poings! and reverberating croonings of that decade to great effect in as a Gayngs member.

Some of their songs could have been the backdrop to a scene of Twin Peaks.

Others, update a vintage sound with modern preferences for noise, solos and rap-singing.

Then there’s “The Gaudy Side of Town,” which is a combo velvety-trancey-smokey record that does justice to the classic front man-backup singer dynamic, Vernon filling the rafters with his high-frequency wails. It’s a great listen, but, what’s next?

Simple, Francois, Music For Thought, Chayed Out

Haim – Falling (Duke Dumont Remix)


There is a moment in Noah Baumbach’s While We’re Young where Duke Dumont’s remix of the Haim song “Falling” plays. The film is a model ship in a bottle: an older generation of creatives begin to hang with a younger hipster generation at the looking glass of sorts that is gentrified New York City. It’s a delicate and intricate situation that occurs in a microcosm at once parodying the thing itself by scaling it down and beautifying it.

While that may be an oversimplification of what the film’s about, it’s an analogue of electronic music itself too. Songs such as this remix of “Falling” are themselves oversimplifications: an original track boiled down to a glaze of vocals and its barest rhythm overlaid with juicy beats and melody.

It’s worth repeating, for it never wears on one, but something simple can yield a multitude of results. The simple is often transparent and direct. It’s the stuff of pop songs and twelve-bar blues. And as the above song demonstrates, demonstrably potent. Enough to get this kid off his high horse and admit the goofy remix is just plain old good.

The Roosevelt Remixes

In the musical genres older than those The Aftermath deals in, say, jazz, folk, or classical, catalogues abound. Whether it’s recording sessions, live performances, or a collating of an artists’s collected works, there are generous archives for whom the eager Django Reinhardt or Jelly Roll Morton fan could explore. Yet, the library for electronic music, to use the broadest of relative terms, is not so well-packaged. The Internet, however, can illuminate what for most contemporary music fans is otherwise a smattering of .mp3, Limewire, YouTube, iTunes and Soundcloud files.

Used cogently, the tangle of keyword searches and a general ear-for-things may eventually prove fruitful. Greco-Roman signee Roosevelt, is a Cologne-based musician who excels at a certain pouncing synth and looping-vocal jam. While we’ve enjoyed the beauties of Roosevelt’s touch here before, like anything worth raving about, you return to it continually. Enjoyed with the proper sound system, these remixes should enliven and inculcate the listener into not only Roosevelt’s motifs, but the sensibility of the Greco-Roman label writ large.

At any rate, here is a footnote for the databases, catalogues, and music libraries of the future.

 

In a bit of reverse engineering, this “short” Roosevelt remix which takes a ten-minute atmospheric song condensed into three finer ones of gurgles and echo.