Featured, Mix | Sightlow’s “Essential Deep House Volume 1″

Posted by on October 22, 2014

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A few weeks back, the homie Slightlow hit me on Facebook and told me to join his online live mix for all my bass and deep house needs, and that alone, was enough for me to ask him for a featured exclusive mix for FNT. Based out of Denver, and grown and raised in North Carolina, Slightlow has been steadily building his sound and fanbase, and he shouldn’t go unnoticed, as this mix will take you to church. It’s the 21st century, and if you’re not vibing out to bass and deep house music, get with the program, Slightlow’s got those essentials for you! This is a must listen!

Albums, Featured, Hip-Hop | Logic – Under Pressure [Album Reflections]

Posted by on October 21, 2014

Where do I begin?

Exactly 1,163 days I received an email.  That email just so happened to be my first official introduction to Maryland hip-hop artist, Logic.  Described as a young, talented MC known for his lyrical prowess – I couldn’t have said it better myself - and fortunately for us, that’s still the same Logic we’re looking at today.  Since that introduction, Logic has been my favorite artist, period.  To call out a few – he’s genuine, personable, tenacious, confident, well spoken, and last but certainly not least, one BEAST of a rapper.  Preaching “peace, love & positivity” since the very start, he’s one artist who has stayed true to his message, through and through.  His story has undoubtably changed hundreds if not thousands of people’s lives for the better.  The craziest part is, Under Pressure is still just the beginning.

When asked what “Under Pressure” means to him, Logic responded,

“For me, it’s the duality of who I am. Being Bobby and being Logic, being under pressure personally in all the things that I go through in my life. Just as a regular dude, ’cause outside of music, there’s people who look at me like I’m not shit. I’m just little Bobby, dealing with the pressures from my family, where I come from. All that. Also, being in the rap game and just being under pressure to sell whatever you gotta sell.” [via XXL]

He’s right though – he’s the debonair “Young Sinatra” on the street, then he steps into the booth and all previous conceptions vanish. He embodies some form of legendary lyrical machine.  That to me is what separates Logic from much of his competition.

It’s clearly been a long time coming to deliver the album and as you’ll hear on “Growing Pains III”, he has recorded over 1,700 songs in the past 10 years, only 150+ of which have been released to date.  Under Pressure is far from a grab bag of records.  Carefully crafted, Logic and team have put countless hours into this album and I hope that after listening, you’ll recognize that.  The 12 tracks (15 on the Deluxe version) collectively paint a bigger picture.  As expected, the album is a very raw, personal look into Logic’s life, and more specifically his upbringing.  From family struggles to personal and musical accomplishments, you’ll truly understand the person behind the mic after listening to this album.

As if I haven’t already giving you enough of a reason to go buy the album, legendary producer No I.D. blessed it with his executive production.  I don’t mean to jump the gun, but typically anything he touches turns gold.  Then platinum.

“Conversations with No I.D
Who made hits with Ye, got hits with Jay
Now he wanna fuck around and make hits with me
If it’s meant to be, then it’s meant to be
Can’t express what that meant for me, what it mean to me
Man, I swear the shit like a dream to me, what it seemed to be” – Till The End [Track 12]

Last but not least, I want to once again give a shout out to the whole team at Visionary Music Group.  Logic’s in house producer, 6ix stepped up and destroyed the production on half of the album.  The rest of the team is too humble to take credit, but I thank you all for the work you’ve put in.  VMG is a blueprint for organic growth, keep at it boys (& girls?).

Without further adieu I suggest you GO GRAB BOTH DIGITAL VERSIONS on iTUNES and take a trip to your local record shop (or Best Buy, Walmart, Target, etc.) and clear out the shelves (if you can beat Henry to it)!!!  100k the first week!

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Featured, Interviews | FNT Exclusive: Andrew Bayer Talks MSG, New Music & More

Posted by on October 17, 2014

Andrew Bayer 620x413 FNT Exclusive: Andrew Bayer Talks MSG, New Music & More

Many artists go dark after an album, or rely on singles and remixes from it to keep the buzz alive. Not Andrew Bayer. He has been hard at work releasing more club oriented tracks like “Once Lydian“, “Bullet Catch” and the “England” EP. With his musical training, his ability to write and produce is evident with each individual song and as a collaborator with Above & Beyond.

The last time we spoke to Andrew Bayer it was around the time of the release of his sophomore artist album “If It Were You, We’d Never Leave“. Now one and half years later, one the eve on the biggest show of his career, joining Above & Beyond for ABGT100 at Madison Square Garden, we had the chance to chat with the DC based producer about his feelings on the show, how life has been over the past year and a half and what he has coming up. Read on for the interview.

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DO SOMETHING

Featured, House | FNT Premiere: Loui & Scibi Feat. Beth Aggett – Believe Me

Posted by on October 13, 2014

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This track “Believe Me” was sent to my inbox by Polish duo Loui & Scibi featuring Beth Aggett, and I happily obliged for a premiere, the vibes are worldwide, and it’s hitting the spot at the moment as I’m out here trekking around Europe feeling like I’m on top of the world. Blending house music with tropical feels – but don’t call it tropical house – once you press play you’ll be taken poolside in the Hamptons, or the beaches of Ibiza, whichever is to your taste. With non-chalant sultry vocals, Beth Aggett flows right through this gem of a production by Loui & Scibi. I’m def digging this ditty, it’s a must listen!

Exclusive, Featured, Progressive House | FNT Premiere: Tom Piper – You Don’t Know (Karboncopy Remix)

Posted by on October 10, 2014

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If we’re talking about two guys from Australia, Karboncopy is probably the duo who has provided me with the most pleasurable experience in the past 48 hours from a male. They have released some really good music in the past, but this one is my favorite and has been on repeat since I first heard it two days, or 48 hours ago. An official remix of Tom Piper’s “You Don’t Know” is what they were tasked with and it came out spectacularly. An understated piano carries the excellent vocals to the build where the anthemic melody takes over and climaxes powerfully at the drop. This remix is as good or better than the original, which is also below, and probably Karboncopy’s best to date. The stream can be found exclusively below and the song can be found on Beatport next Monday, October 13th.

Beatport: Tom Piper – You Don’t Know

Electronic, Exclusive, Featured | FNT Premiere: Glitter Wasteland – Don’t Let It Go (IAMX remix)

Posted by on October 9, 2014

unnamed 620x348 FNT Premiere: Glitter Wasteland   Dont Let It Go (IAMX remix)

Electro pop collective Glitter Wasteland are ready to make their mark on the pop scene with the crooning vocals of mysterious and well traveled front-woman Siri Jantey. Now as befitting such a tune, we find ourselves with several remixes of different styles and flavors. Today, we are here to premiere a remix of “Don’t Let It Go” from Berlin / LA based, underground darkpop leader IAMX, that blends dark and brooding synths with a fluttering arp, hanging there just out of your reach over with Siri Jantley’s haunting vocals. The tune will be all yours on October 13th via On The Fruit Music, but until then, stream it below exclusively.

Featured, Interviews | FNT Exclusive: Maxim Talks Buying 50 Bras, NYC Memories, Passion For Music & More

Posted by on October 2, 2014

MM and CB 620x372 FNT Exclusive: Maxim Talks Buying 50 Bras, NYC Memories, Passion For Music & More

No I did not interview the magazine, though I wouldn’t have minded that. Maxim the frontman of The Prodigy has had an illustrious career as part of arguably the most influential dance trio in history, but he has not stopped there, creating an impressive solo career alongside The Prodigy that includes 2 albums and a host of EPs. Maxim DJ has taken off for him as we wait for news about the impending Prodigy album and whatever twisted, genius work will come from the trio.

A couple weeks back I had the pleasure of sitting down with Maxim, the rowdy frontman of The Prodigy. Meeting up with him mid day at a studio, Mophonics in the West Village, Maxim was in the midst of a bender of a week, mixing it up with old friends on the town, while here to work on music and talk music. Sitting very calmly, sporting large black sunglasses and potentially a hangover, one can never tell with these guys, he cooly answered my questions and undoubtedly the ones that preceded mine and those which were to follow. Listen to his most recent tunes below and read on for the interview.

FNT: Since we are in New York, what’s you first memory of New York?

Maxim: First memory here in New York professionally was when we [The Prodigy] played here. I just instagramed a picture of it, The Limelight club. It’s not actually a club anymore, its an exhibition hall or something. We played there in ’91, I just drove past it and was like “wow that’s the Limelight”. My best memory of New York. It was a really odd night. It was one of our first times in America and it was a challenging time for us, it was new, it was exciting, it was fresh.

FNT: Was it packed?

Maxim: Yeah it was packed. It was a weird night because there were a lot of transvestites in there. People were all dressed up. Yeah it was a good party, we hung out at the bars chatting to people, yeah it was a good time. Then actually we came back and recorded the video for “Everybody In The Place” here. I think that was in ’92 as well. Kind of the video I look back at and think a bit cringey, but everyone has moments in their life where think, what am I doing there?

FNT: Since we are in one of these studios, what is the first thing you go for when you walk into one?

Maxim: The first thing I always look at are the speakers. That is the first thing I always look at, because you want to know what kind of weight and sound it is going to be pushing out. You can always judge a studio on its speakers.

FNT: Turning to your music, do you see any similarities in that and what you do / did with The Prodigy?

Maxim: Only the fact that it is me. That’s it. My personality doesn’t change. My personality is going to be the same when I am in The Prodigy as it is when I do my solo stuff. But obviously doing solo stuff it is going to be 100% me. It is like a parent dressing a child, the child has a little bit of input, the parent has a bit of input. That’s The Prodigy. I am the child and I have gone on and dressed myself. I have put on these odd clothes and I am quite comfortable in them.

I used to wear some odd outfits even when I was in The Prodigy. If you look back at old photos I used to wear kilts and skirts and stuff. I actually made a skirt it was covered in pins to the front and it was made out of black material and people used to say “Where did you get that? It looks like Jean Paul Gaultier”. I wore it for years on stage. I made a jacket out of bras. It was made of 50 bras.

the prodigy FNT Exclusive: Maxim Talks Buying 50 Bras, NYC Memories, Passion For Music & More

FNT: Where did you get the bras?

I went to the store and bought 50 bras. It was probably an odd moment for the store. What’s this guy coming in and buying 50 bras? They were satin bras, so when you see it on stage it almost looks like a parachute kind of jacket because I cut the bra straps and the bra straps are hanging all over. I cut the cups in half and layered them, so it has satin cups all over this jakcet. Then the straps are hanging all over.

FNT: How long did it take you to make that?

Maxim: A couple of days. I wore it for 6 months and then I threw it in the crowd, so somebody has that coat.

FNT: How would you compare the experience between the two, musically, live etc?

Maxim: Playing music live is the ultimate thing. DJing comes in a close second because I am writing my own music and playing it but I am behind the decks and I am not a behind the decks guys, I am a stage guy. However, it is good to take a back seat where I can put Ciana Blaze out front. She is the energy of me, she is the performance of me. In some respects I enjoy it a bit because it puts her in the limelight and puts me in the shadows and she deserves to be there as a good MC and performer. It is more about her than it is about me really.

FNT: So I guess would this be taking We Are Noize on the road?

Maxim: Yes and no. I have changed the approach to the whole We Are Noize thing because it became a bit confusing for people. “You are Maxim DJ, what’s We Are Noize?” Well I am part of a collective We Are Noize, we are just producers.

FNT: But do you perform as We Are Noize?

Maxim: No just as Maxim DJ, so I had to reevaluate the whole We Are Noize as the label which I put the music out. So predominantly it is just Maxim DJ for my music and the producers are writing music with me, but it all comes through as Maxim DJ featuring Ciana Blaze and eventually it may become just Ciana Blaze on We Are Noize. I just simplified the whole approach. It is just DJing during Prodigy shows and performances, I slot the DJing in between it and just keep on writing tracks and Ciana performs her tunes. Eventually Ciana will be able to do her own show without me because that is her goal, so let’s see.

FNT: Do you ever see a point where you might retire?

Maxim: Never. For what? People who retire, don’t enjoy what they are doing. A footballer retires because he isn’t capable of playing anymore. Music is a totally different thing. You can always create, you can always write music, your brain doesn’t slow down. You take on different inspirations, but your whole ethic, your belief in music, it always stays the same. You don’t start writing metal at 21 and as you get older you start writing orchestral music or country. No, no, no. You just have to stay on top of what you are doing and have the same belief. You have to stay on top of what people are putting out there and be current and original. This is what I love, what I like to do, I like to write music. The performance side will change. I still have energy, I am still fit, I still perform in the Prodigy. Who knows how long that will last. As soon as my knees start to give away then I think I will call it a day. Djing ::chuckles:: I think I will be performing forever. Retire, to do what? Gardening? Potting plants? Flower arranging? Go and work in the library? No I just write music and that is what I like to do.

FNT: What is something people might not know about you?

Maxim: I am an artist as well. Check out my website mm-gallery.com.

FNT: Do you sell your art?

Maxim: Yeah, but I have stopped selling my art for a while now until I start painting again. Another point I think many people don’t know about me is that I grew up through reggae music. A lot of people think The Prodigy started and that was the first thing I ever did musically. No when I was 13, 14 I used to MC on sound systems and that’s where I honed my skills as a MC. A lot of people think that “Firestarter” was the first Prodigy tune. The young kids they don’t really look back 10 years, “The Prodigy who are they, who are The Prodigy”?

We tried to bring the party scene from the UK over to the US and they weren’t interested. Now you have the “EDM” scene. It’s a start. As time goes on it will fragment.

It’s like a flower that is starting to bud. Eventually it will grow into a tree and have many branches on it.

FNT: … And everybody will have a place.

Maxim: Exactly. That is a good note to end on.