4 Diverse Valentino Khan Tracks That Even Your Picky Friends Will Like
I don’t think we at RB need to inform you why we think Valentino Khan is the cat’s pajamas: I mean, with a Soundcloud littered with progressive house, Hip-hop, and techno influences, there are probably at least two tracks to satisfy any of your friends who are skeptical of anything that isn’t a “niche” genre. Fortunately for all your picky and self-righteous friends, today we have compiled four of his best tracks that could fit anywhere from a house-party, or maybe even the “baddest” baby shower in AZ:
Techno Set (Miami 2016)
Now, this is an odd choice, isn’t it RB? Usually it’s a bit unorthodox to use a full live set as a countdown track, but we found it extremely important to highlight the techno aspect of Khan’s music. Usually when we hear a modern techno track, there always seems to be that lingering feeling of “dated.” How can we blame ourselves? Techno was one of the first introductions that some of us younger folks had to the dance community. What seperates Valentino Khan’s Techno set, is his ability to make his sound so pristine and clear, that you forget it draws upon older generations. Now, this is not a diss to techno fans: it still is a very viable genre, but most artists have taken the time to focus their work on either being apart of, or creating new sub-genres. You’re able to tune into any specific part of Valentino Khan’s Techno Set, and you’re bound to be surprised the way he updates an older genre to fit a more musically-demanding demographic.
Dillon Francis – When We Were Young (Valentino Khan Remix)
For number three, we thought we would bring you guys a little trap to the game. WithDillon Francis’s original vocal track, this trap banger feels just at-home with Progressive House fans as well as those that prefer something a little dirtier. While this may not be as “trap” as our friend, Bro Safari might call it, Khan manages to mix quality sounds in a minor key that keep the integrity of a ballad, but the drops involve a heavier, darker drop that makes that wait for it oh-so more satisfying before.
DJ Green Lantern & Valentino Khan Featuring Iggy Azalea – Know About Me
Oh dear, here she comes again: this isn’t the first time an article on RB has featured Iggy Azalea piece, but hate her or love her, the trap aspects in this song are much stronger than the latter. You may think we are “cheating” by listing another trap song, but unlike the latter track, this banger goes full trap and is quite unapologetic about that fact. Behind Iggy’s vocals are very aggressive hip-hop beats that mix the sounds of Kendrick Lamar, David Aude, and DJ Khaled in this party-like-yet-intelligent house thumper. Also, don’t lie, RB, I totally saw you cringe when I typed the words, DJ Khaled.
Animal Style (Original Mix)
For the coveted number-one spot of your Valentino Khan playlist, we decided to go back to the roots. No, not the band, but a little diddy Khan likes to call “Animal Style.” Maybe stemming from Los Angeles, he knows the power of the In’N’Out secret menu, but greasy spoons aside, Animal Style is possibly one of the strangest, yet intriguing songs you’ll hear. Listed under the genre, “Tropical Bass,” there’s quite a few people who haven’t heard that term in quite a while. Not to mention this happens to be his first track ever listed on Soundcloud.
When you get down to the nitty-gritty of the track, this beach banger combines drum+bass-esque synths with a steel drum in the background to give it almost a frantic feel; and don’t you miss that feeling in the club? We have so many feel good ballads in today’s cycle of EDM that it is rare to find tracks that can make a crowd “frantic.” What’s even better than making a crowd chill over your ambient work? Turning on a game-changer like this and watching people lose their minds because the musical composition is influencing them so. Songs like this come once every few years, and sometimes they end up getting hidden in the wood-work. In all honesty, some of us still aren’t quite sure what exactly makes Tropical Bass, aside from “global sounds,” but let this be your introductory to something new, ‘animal style,’ and tasty!
Just like a good professor would say at your local college, use this information in your daily life. What does this mean for you? Well, kiddies, get to your most advanced stereo, jump on that shit with some blutooth capabilities, and jam out to the diversity that is THE Valentino Khan. Stay schwifty, RB.
Grab your tickets to check out Valentino Khan at Global Dance Festival AZ now!
3 Nu Disco / Disco House Tracks That Keep the Funk Alive In 2016
There are some genres that are better left in the past, while others simply wouldn’t fit in with today’s music sensibilities. We at Relentless Beats have tipped our hats to the genre of disco before, in varying degrees, and there is no shame to be had. Disco, although generating wide anger by rock fans in the late 1970s and early 80s, provided the basement of the house we all know as the umbrella genre of EDM; Yes, although we might not carry the same audiophile sensibilities of old-school synthesizers as well as artificial instruments mimicking orchestras in the sense of the past decades, disco started a community of club-goers that peaked during the 80s introduction of house music.
In the year of 2016, the need for Nu-Disco has diminished, but the fun of sub-genres also includes watching them grow, die, or even transform into something greater (*cough* Techno).
We can all make the claim of who started the house movement, and name the major players, but unbeknownst to the public eye, Disco has managed to survive and mold itself into something with recognizable elements, but what has fused into a more perfect union between house and disco. In honor of the Nu-Disco/Disco House movement, we will be looking at three songs from modern artists who are still keeping the kernel of hope alive for a genre that has shrunk in recent years:
3. Classixx – Safe Inside Featuring Passion Pit
Safe Inside – Classixx feat. Passion Pit
Passion Pit provides smooth vocals on this chill dance by Michael David and Tyler Blake, who come to form Classixx as what seems to be a departure from the Daft Punk stereotype. While the backbeat does feature what some may mistake as disco monotony, Classixx is actually channeling the original elements of 1970s disco, instead of following what beats were popular during Daft Punk’s resurgence that gave the 2010’s a little more disco. The vocals of Passion Pit might make you think this is a song from your high school days. Don’t worry, we won’t judge you; it’s pretty hard when their contributions to the song give a distinct acoustic yet modernized sound against the familiar genre riffs spliced into something new. Although Classixx as a duo only has two albums under their belt, they have released consistent streams of work.
2. Fresh Prince & DJ Jazzy Jeff – Summertime (Maratta Remix)
In an odd contribution to the Soundcloud universe, someone decided to give a 2016 Disco House spin on a classic that should be mentioned more often. Will Smith’s smooth vocals that slide across a macarena beat midway through the song gives way to a heady section of brass. Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff don’t mess around on this hip-hop remix and with newcomer Maratta on the helm (only bearing 160 followers), proves his worth to bat in the major leagues with a sophisticated bassline that puts the disco-hate to shame. Coming in at second place, Summertime is a contemporary ode to classic hiphop mixed with blaring groovy sounds.
1. Voju – Driftin’
Stationed in Berlin, Germany, Voju’s Driftin’ provides an even deeper dive into the sub-subgenres of Cosmic Disco and Funky House.While the genre norms may be obscure even for most producing mavens, Driftin’ provides no vocals, yet charms the listener with its funktastic bassline melded with disco sensibilities that a live band could only benefit of playing the piece. One listen could be the equivalent to a Casio keyboard on ketamine, for Driftin’ has all the direction in mind, yet goes where you wouldn’t expect it to. Some may call it a little too slow for their taste, but upon closer inspection, you’re bound to find the genius in the blending of synths that come together in unique solo moments without their being any live instruments present. Although Voju is also a relatively new artist, Driftin’ definitely embodies the genre yet also earns its spot on number one on the list.
Disco House / Nu Disco are words that you rarely hear in the genre of anything electronic, but with a little bit of sleuthing work, you can find rewarding treasure in the trove of sub-genres. Although some of these artists might be unfamiliar to you, take a listen, for all three of these selections embody the past of including elements of classic Disco, but also combining music with other genres to set themselves apart from the others. Daft Punk may have known how to get funky, but these guys never let the funk die in the first place.
Connect With Voju: Soundcloud
4 Tracks from Kelly Clarkson’s New Remix Album That Make the Dancefloor Hot
Kelly Clarkson is a name that you wouldn’t think would normally be associated with the realm of EDM or even dance. Although she possesses a diverse fanbase and a good old-fashioned rock’n’roll approach to authority figures like her record company, her American Idol heritage and even recent works that have included electronic elements haven’t truly associated her name with the world of electronic. Piece by Piece Remixed was released on March 4, 2016, and features her first effort at putting together an official remix album. While many of the DJs featured aren’t immediately associated with the mainstream, Piece by Piece Remixed gives her most recent effort an EDM-infused breath of life that can really throw someone off at first listening.
Below, let’s check out four tracks from the new remix album that have been transformed into cool club-style hits and off-beat EDM oddities:
- Dance With Me (Young Bombs Remix)
Kelly Clarkson – “Dance With Me (Young Bombs Remix)”
Dance With Me, remixed by the Young Bombs features an odd and elaborate approach to a simple poppy album track from the aforementioned studio album. Adding organic elements of Spanish guitar reminiscent of Avicii’s more recent studio efforts. YB seems to have almost given the track a “Capital Cities” treatment with distinctive brass that still has the backbone of thick ambient synths.
- Someone (Frank Pole Remix)
Kelly Clarkson – “Someone (Frank Pole Remix)”
Frank Pole gives us his best attempt at gut-busting ballad-y beats with the nostalgia ofCascada and a Lana Del Rey remix for us all to cry to. “Someone” has been transformed by Frank Pole to bring out a lavish belted dance ballad that has no real instrument in site. With a sunny rising chord progression, and dreamy lyrics, Kelly Clarkson contends with the best of the EDM crooners.
- Second Wind (Cheat Codes Remix)
Kelly Clarkson – “Second Wind (Cheat Codes Remix)”
Featuring a hip-hop clap outlining the thicker interior of dark synths and thick drops, theCheat Codes DJ/Producer trio adds beef to what some might call a sappy Kelly Clarkson track that could rival motivational-tracks like “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You).” While the vocals are almost kept intact and the lyrics present, the instruments and production elements are the true star of the show that boost “twerkability factor.”
- Let Your Tears Fall (Cutmore Remix)
Kelly Clarkson – “Let Your Tears Fall (Cutmore Remix)”
While you might have been expecting a more immediately memorable Kelly Clarkson hit, this countdown has managed to focus on not only the best, but lesser known singles and/or album tracks on her new remix album. “Let Your Tears Fall” is possibly the best example of Cutmore possessing DJ Snake-ish elements of South Asian dance and traditional beats that carry the song through a symphonic journey. While all of the songs featured have been given a “beefier” element to their production style, “Let Your Tears Fall” has made the most rave-friendly transformation that will make you forget about “Breakaway” and “Heartbeat Song.” Let Your Tears Fall is an obvious winner on the dancefloor, while still retaining the spirt of the original.
Four of these songs that all happen to be featured on Kelly Clarkson’s new remix album all have the chops to be played in the clubs or just be casually playing in the background shamelessly at your next gathering. Props to her slew of DJs to add significant substance to her original pop album, but also provide a possible new demographic for the Kelly Clarkson fanbase.
Five Tracks to Get You Pumped For Pendulum’s Return at Ultra 2016
It has been officially announced that Pendulum will be making their return at the 2016 Ultra Music Festival. With a sweeping return as the self-described electronic rock band by Knife Party‘s Rob Swire and Gareth McGrillen, it seems that their former gripes and disillusion with Pendulum are going to be put to the side for a banging appearance. Ultra 2016 is no better way to kick off their return to the world of house and EDM, but it definitely helps that catching up on their last three albums in anticipation shows that their music has hardly felt the inevitable effects of time. Today, we will be looking at five tracks chosen from their entire catalog to not only get you in the mood for their approaching performance, but also show you some tracks that you might have forgotten about when you last faithfully tuned into Pendulum.
Pendulum – Granite
The lead single off of “In Silico,” was released in 2007, before the eventual 2008 release of their sophomore album. While this single does succeed their inaugural album, Granite delivered the final blow into what would be the character of Pendulum as a band. While we don’t hear those silky Pet Shop Boy-esque vocals we were used to on 2010’s “Immersion,” an in-your-face synth riff matched over a simple chord progression coming from an electric guitar. While it may not reflect the current state of the band or even EDM itself, it reflected their yearning to be seen as an individual act. Not to mention it brings us to a simpler time, when we straightened our hair, tried to dance to Brokencyde, and used our food money from our mothers to buy cigarettes.
4. The Vulture
Pendulum – The Vulture
The Vulture, a rather obscure album track from the album, Immersion, stands alone as a strange testament to the mix of electronic and rap. While the familiar chords don’t fail to disappoint on this track, the inclusion of wiry beats give a cleaner sound to their newer material than songs like “Granite” from their earlier releases. That being said, The Vulture is coming in at number four for not only its hot grinds and unbelievably catchy riff that can only encourage you to dance towards drug-fueled dehydration at your next get-together. The Vulture is an odd lick, but a good alternate reference to the most recent state of Pendulum’s music.
3. Blood Sugar
Pendulum – Blood Sugar
Part of the 2007 reissue of “Hold Your Colour,” a single was released under the title “Blood Sugar/Axel Grinder” brings back that hardcore-infused electronica sound we have all come to love. While there are no signs of any vocals, the instrumentals should be the first object of your affection as the band released material that combines their older direction of traditional instruments with a silky production on both tracks that highlight their step going into the new direction that Immersion and their journeys would eventually take them. Blood Sugar makes no hidden reference to the impact that EDM has had in their music. While Blood Sugar’s chord progressions and musical elements provide a more complicated canvas that their earlier singles had, Blood Sugar is a perfect combination of Pendulum-Classic and Nu-Pendulum.
2. The Island Pt. 2
Pendulum – The Island Part 2
While Immersion’s The Island Part 1 has gotten much love from fans, little has been said about the second part of the duo of a club banger. The Island Part 2 focuses on sounds that would definitely be played at your local DJ set that appeals to the masses. With a sick organ solo in the middle of the track, it slowly fades to the back as a tribal beat becomes more prominent. At this point in our journey with Pendulum, the infamous Pet Shop Boy-esque vocals that were mentioned above come into effect. While featured in a short interlude around the last minute of the song, the smooth vocals provided mark the full transformation of Pendulum to more electronic production values.
Pendulum – Witchcraft
While there needs to be love given to the early work of the now-heavy electronic elements of the band, Pendulum, a list like this wouldn’t be complete with one of their fan-favorites, the second single from Immersion. Witchcraft is another track stuck between two times in the career of Pendulum. While the beginning features older elements from more traditional rock elements, after the first minute gives way more electronic features are added. Combining the newer, smoother vocals that Pendulum as approached, his formerly harsh vocals give a surprisingly sweet addition to the heavy electronic infused banger. Witchcraft stands out in Pendulum’s short catalog as a track that ties their history together of changing sounds. While they have not fully abandoned their “dirtier” sounds, they have clearly not forgotten their roots. Featured at the number one spot, Witchcraft is a great track to get someone who is not as enthusiastic about electronic sounds as you are to hang out with you more.
While these five songs only touch a lick of their best work, slap that old CD in and give Pendulum the love they deserve before they take the stage at Ultra 2016. Only time will tell what their musical place will be in this 2016 world, but keep your hopes high and headphones tight. While Knife Party may have lose their enthusiasm for Pendulum, this reunion will keep our breaths held to see what 2016 has in store for Knife Party and Pendulum.
5 Remixes by ODESZA That You Have To Blast Immediately
Here you will find latest work in the very recent and pop-culture friendly format of “listicles:”
The name, ODESZA, has become synonymous with trance-y ebbs and smooth, ambient flows that will make any stoner slide back in his or her chair the instant a melody is repeated. We will be lining up five of ODESZA’s best and diverse remixes that you definitely need to hear!
5. Sia – Big Girls Cry (ODESZA Remix)
Sia – Big Girls Cry (ODESZA Remix)
Sia has been an artist that has always been involved with the trip-hop, alternative, and ambient music scenes with much of her early work with Zero 7. While much of her less popular work has been forgotten in favor of her new, mainstream friendly tunes, ODESZA’s 2014 work on the limited-release second single off “1,000 Forms of Fear” shows that they are definitely not afraid to take Sia back where Sia came from. Much of the original melody is stripped from the track, bringing the song back to her early days when abstract ambiance ruled over catchy hooks. While almost all of the original lyrics, melody, and vocals are stripped from the number, “Big Girls Cry” comes in at number five for its clever limited use of Sia’s vocals with an entirely reworked melody that will make any long-time Sia fan yearn for her old days.
4. Hayden James – Something About You (ODESZA Remix)
Hayden James – Something About You (ODESZA Remix)
The original composition of Hayden James’s “Something About You” gives a very Divahouse approach on the backbeat that makes the questions the vocals ask, almost playful. While the original can be blasted in almost any club-setting and get the crowd ready, the ODESZA remix of Hayden James’s groove begins in an entirely different mood. Bringing in the classic ambiance we are all used to from ODESZA, a female voice asks us if it’s okay to “have a hit of your love.” Going from the former’s vocals, which featured a more playful, beat-orientated track, ODESZA’s remix of the song and dominance of artificial strings throughout the melody paint an almost playfully tragic picture of the lyrics being portrayed. As the mantra-refrain continues to be repeated, it shouldn’t be uncommon for the listener to develop almost a haunting feeling as the custom bassline draws to fading close. ODESZA’s rework of Hayden James’s “Something About You” is coming in at number four, but should be one of your top songs to chill to in 2016 after a long, hard day.
3. Charli XCX – Break the Rules (ODESZA Remix)
Charli XCX – Break the Rules (Odesza Remix)
What can be said about Charli XCX? Most famously making her debut in Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy,” one can almost mistake her for a Gwen Stefani cover band with her similarly crooned dramatic vocals that don’t seem to have as much as an emphasis in her melody as Gwen makes in her own voice. Admittedly, this is a song I was not a fan of at all, be it radio edit form, or otherwise. With childish lyrics, a lazy pop bassline, and what seems to be the musical incantation of a wrinkly studio executive’s hand reaching and fondling the young masses to buy a pseudo-rebellious song that encourages American kids to go to the “discotheque.” While we aren’t a stranger to “getting high and getting wrecked,” no one gives a shit what a discotheque is.
ODESZA’s 2014 remix of this sugary pop tune starts off way better than could ever be anticipated for where this song could go. Including an insanely morale-boosting and bass-y march beat that introduces the tune, the lyrics almost sound less painful with this better execution. While still possessing the ambient and “far-out” feelings of a typical ODESZA remix, this particular mix is directly in-your-face with its intent: changing an ordinary pop tune into a banger that won’t embarrass you on the ride to work.
2. Pretty Lights – Lost and Found (ODESZA Remix)
Pretty Lights // Lost and Found (ODESZA Remix)
In its remix form, Pretty Lights have found much success with ODESZA’s remix of “Lost and Found”, which also happened to be included on the Divergent soundtrack. While the remix has definitely made a splash with both EDM and film-goers alike, the original includes a diverse instrumentation that evokes that “retro-indie” effect to the ears that almost every band who follows trends wants to buck onto. In including a good range of brass, strings, and representations of very raw, real instruments, the lesser known original track of the remix captures a nostalgia that millennials have been chasing for the past decade. Similar to Pretty Light’s take on Pink Floyd’s “Time,” ODESZA’s Lost and Found goes against their own grain as more natural and organic production techniques are used in this remix. Hearing bits of the melody being reused along with artificial instruments that take the place of the more organic, original instrumentation, some of the more natural production techniques that were kept reflect sounds we almost hear in our daily life, a fair nod to the original work that Pretty Lights had already done. Remixes like these are hard to find – one that challenges the style of the original tune and said-person who is remixing, but still keeps to the original theme while giving small nods to the old and new.
1. Porter Robinson ft. Amy Millan – Divinity (ODESZA Remix)
Porter Robinson ft. Amy Millan – Divinity (ODESZA Remix)
It has been no secret that there had been a wish from many internet listeners who have been wanting a musical collaboration between Porter Robinson and ODESZA before this mix dropped. 2015 had delivered a bag of many wishes, and Electronic Santa Claus delivered one of the most skin-crawling ambient tunes that will satiate the need of eardrum sex for the next year to come. This will be the only entry that will disregard the original almost entirely, for the 2015 Remix of Divinity had been entirely reworked to reflect an entirely different composition. While differences have been mentioned between original compositions and their respective remixes from ODESZA, Porter Robinson with Amy Millan and ODESZA changed a ground-shaking mix, ODESZA once again brings back some more typical drum-set beats that mix with Amy’s vocals in an enchanting and indie playland. After the more organic production choices take their place, we hear some Porter Robinson-esque melodies make their way back into the composition, slowly riding against ODESZA’s soft beats, while also softening some of Porter’s more “lit” choices against Amy’s soft, techno-friendly vocals.
While this only scratches the surface of ODESZA’s catalog, let these songs take you on a smooth journey, whether you’ll be stalking that ex-girlfriend, or enjoying a nice quiet evening out on the town. If you’d like to hear more ODESZA’s work, follow the links below: