Onto the forty-eight episode of the Weekly Roundup, and we have scores of tracks from monikers such as Don Diablo, Audien, Zeds Dead, and plenty more. Genres covered this time you ask? The latest from Big Room to Dubstep, the list has it. Alright, enough small talk, let’s see what the second week has in store for us!
Bassjackers, SaberZ – Lose It
Last Friday, Smash The House brought together two leading Big Room names, Bassjackers and SaberZ, for the first time.
“Lose It” comprises every bit of the classic Big Room that one could ask. Screeching (but weirdly distorted) synths that are familiar to the Dutch duo’s sound, and other details fit in by the Hungarian pair put forward a reasonably danceable track. Although in a world where festival genres such as future rave have quickly overtaken, this production relies on somewhat outdated arrangements to prove its point. And to some, it will, for others, it could turn out a huge miss.
Hardwell – Rebels Never Die
Serving as the finale to the massive album that Hardwell released partly each week, the titular track “Rebels Never Die” came out after months of its initial premiering.
My colleague @mutt.0 has written an apt review that resonates with his thoughts about the entire album, so do peruse through that if you’re looking for a separate perspective. On my behalf, I will state that the closing production marks an energetic conclusion, including grunting electro synths and other techno components also present throughout the album alongside an entrancing, arp-driven breakdown that caught most of my attention. Other than that, there’s a slight miss of that remarkability which I found in other preceding records such as “PACMAN” or “LASER“. This album, regardless, was a thrilling ride for the most part.
Armin van Buuren – Computers Take Over The World
Marking various AI takeovers in the modern day, Armin van Buuren has offered a playful and snappy production sardonically titled “Computers Take Over The World”.
The whole beat centers around a robotic female vocal leading the performance, and the idea is executed in an eccentric but entertaining way. The instruments in this driving techno presentation are under the command of this voice, performing their duties in an enthusiastic fashion. This is especially meant for the dancefloors where many DJs are known to “troll”, a cheeky expression for comical effects such as this (remember “This Is A Test“?). The second half of the track brings out a growling acid riff which replaces the minimality preceding this, while the vocal goes frenzy in a bout of beatboxing.
BLVD. & Laidback Luke – Cielo
In a surprising turn of events, pioneering Dutch music icon Ferry Corsten took it upon himself to provide a delectable twist to BLVD. and Laidback Luke‘s collaboration “Cielo”.
Shimmering with progressive trance hallmarks that the “Gouryella” creator is well-known for, the remix makes plenty of harmony out of the vocal from the original song, which used a sparser and offbeat tech house rhythm. A beautiful ambiance takes over courtesy of soft and spaced-out synths, with analog-sounding riffs doing their magic, while the groove adheres to a synth-pop type rhythm, adding a sense of funk to the emotional get-up. A pleasurable outcome that deserves a listen!
Don Diablo – All You Need
With his recent endeavors, it has been harder to keep track of the Hexagon records label-head Don Diablo, mostly because his evolution towards a commercial electronic-pop sound didn’t appeal to me outright. Yet he is more than a capable producer, and “All You Need” is a testament to the Dutch producer’s immaculate music-creating aptitude.
Right from the start, this tune hooked me with its dreamy pads in the breakdown with a soulful vocal on top. Creativity does its charm at the drop, where a bunch of synths, intentionally detuned, play over a simple but fetching cadence. Blending a refreshing sonic cocktail of deep and future house sound that reminded me of the earlier discography from Don; this track is a delightful post-summer discovery.
Audien feat. Joe Jury – Drifting Away
Few artists stick to their usual sound for a longer time than usual and still outperform. Audien is among those, and with singer Joe Jury, the listeners are bound to drift into some hypnotic head-nodding with this latest release.
“Drifting Away” is pleasantly predictable, avoiding frills and unnecessary plot twists that can ruin a time-tested schematic. The melodic progressive synths rush into an enticing melody right after the breakdown and a suave vocal delivers the delicate introduction, all geared for the listener to drown in mid-2010s nostalgia. Call me old-fashioned, but this single emits an abundance of appeal!
Zeds Dead x Blanke – The Machines
To supplement the need for bass, “The Machines” is prescribable: A brainchild of the Canadian dyad Zeds Dead and uprising figure Blanke, this track is nothing like it seems at the start. A melancholic and muted piano introduces a dystopian mood (further amplified by the expository narrative), only to be abruptly invaded by midtempo growling synths, hungry to commit aggressive wobbles. A cinematic segment quickly comes after a breakbeat that quickly gives way to the drop that brings forth alternative distorted synths. Unpredictable and provoking, this UKF-signed track is bound to throw the audience into a fit with its swanky attitude.
LUJANO x Miguel Atiaz – Break Free
Some good old Big Room from Madoz Records, always capable of finding new talents to impress me! This time LUJANO and Miguel Atiaz have crafted a classic Festival production, which loses some point with a predictable breakdown before smashing my expectations with an explosive drop. Excellent melody, crazy bassline, the screeching lead works like a charm. Top-notch mixing quality too! I had a lot of fun with “Break Free“.
Qwiet Type – I Want More
I rarely listen to this genre, which is typically outside the scope of the blog, but “I Want More” impressed me with its fabulous vocal performance and the explosive riff with rock influences, as Qwiet Type has a lot of experience with that. A calm (for an EDM reviewer!) experience with little creative details and a pinch of Electro in the bassline, quality percussions and a catchy guitar… That’s quite an experience!