Posted by JT on November 24, 2014
Welcome to the edge of the horizon. If you dare, bring your scuba gear, because we’re about to travel deep into uncharted territory. Here, the weather is unpredictable. You’ll find yourself caught between a warm breeze and icy chills. There are quiescent deserts, bustling forests, mystifying depths of ocean, and volatile skies. Indeed, Portrait Digital have brought forward a showcase of melodies and beats that can be commended for realizing, thus far, the pinnacles reached by the Melodic Progressive House/Trance genre in its story of evolution. Out December 1, 2014, The Gallery:03 eases our transition into the New Year and foreshadows a sense of what to expect in 2015 from the label.
The compilation invests in well-known talents like Roald Velden, Bee Hunter, and Denis Neve, names that have become recognized for their contributions to this scene. Gallery:03 could not start off more perfectly as Idle Earth’s “Darling, My Love Is Yours” instills feel-good vibes, soundscaping our minds into a state of positivity. Moving ahead, one realizes that the melodic progressive genre has managed to break barriers onto the dancefloor, as demonstrated by the magicians Kirill Nikolaev & Denis Neve’s in “Redline” – a track that was featured on Armin Van Buuren’s ASOT 689. Alex Byrka & EdNikoff take us into the abyss with “Atlantis,” followed by Kono who delivers a one-way ticket to drifting in the skies with “Sakuna.” Each track narrates its own story delegated by emotional breaks, chords and synths.
The Gallery:03 has conquered our expectations and is a true reflection of Portrait Digital’s caliber. It is consistent, it is quality, and it is divine.
Posted by JT on November 8, 2014
A Sense of Wonder is an album entirely dedicated to our generation of lovers, adventurers, and dreamers. It is an album that inspires, musically narrating tales of victory and defeat caught in between simple moments and complex realities. It is an album that innovates, as Dan Sieg demonstrates he’s unafraid to play with our emotions by experimenting with both the uplifting and dark sides of progressive trance. He reminds us that curiosity doesn’t always lead to a sense of discovery – it can bite you right back. Released by the titan’s of progressive trance and house, Silk Royal Records, A Sense of Wonder can be commended for defining “Progressive Trance,” as it is truly a work of art.
Dan Sieg hasn’t always gone by this moniker. He paved his path into progressive trance as Dan & Sam (Sam Wilkinson) and after showcasing the timeless “Walls” with sensational vocalist Maxx Hennard (an XM Electric Area 52 favorite), the floodgates had opened. Dan couldn’t slow down. He released over 30 originals and remixes in the past year, all in lieu of perfecting A Sense of Wonder. Indeed, Dan’s 17 years of musical endurance, which started with guitar at age 8, is vividly displayed in the depth of the chords here – every pluck, bass line, build up, and transition is strategically placed to create this front to end masterpiece.
Every track has its story. Some are the product of empty nights filled with endless streams of thought, others a reflection of friends and memories made in unexpected circumstances. The album starts with the uplifting “Iris” and permeates the path for the journey we are about to begin. A Sense of Wonder plays with our emotions, bringing us summertime sadness with a track like “Gloom,” and then elevating us back to cloud 9 with “Erko.” He even curates a rendition of techno with the clever “Techbruary,” a track that took me completely off-guard when first blessing my speakers. The album has received support from artists of all kind, with “Welcome To The Alley” being showcased on Above & Beyond’s Group Therapy episode 99. A Sense of Wonder concludes with “Horizons,” a progressive track that soundscapes all five senses to attention. Dan Sieg has become imprinted permanently as a progressive trance guru with this glorious release, so be prepared and grab a parachute, because grounding yourself is not an option.
Posted by Grubeats 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!
Posted by TwirlyHatMatt on September 26, 2014
Hailing from Los Angeles, Tate Tucker is the agile rapper that first got his shine off of a 5 minute freestyle over the famous “93 ’til” instrumental.
He’s come a long way since his high school rap days, and just last week dropped a stunning new video for his song titled, “Money Over Everything”.
Tate is a talented rapper and backed with the forward thinking production of Garrett Lodge, “M.O.E.” is really the full package.
Posted by BIGLIFE on September 26, 2014
We’ve been watching Scottish talent Jack Eye Jones with increasing interest over the past few months and with good reason. The much loved Scotsman has been churning out the peak time festival tunes with increasing regularity, all the while gaining support from some of the biggest in the industry with particularly vocal support from heavyweights Avicii and Tiësto. Following on from the likes of Playground (which featured Tiësto himself on the remix pack) and Far East which caused quite a stir at EDC, we now have the latest high tempo salvo from Jack in ‘My Neighbours Know’ feat vocals from British talent STG.
Taking inspiration from the much loved mantra of the Scot “turn it up and let your neighbours know!” the track combines some trademark Jack Eye Jones percussion with a roaring synth line and a vocal feature that will no doubt go down well with clubbers. Coming this next month on Beatport via Jack’s own IBZ Records label, this one is sure to do some damage. If you think you might have heard this one before, that’s probably due to the fact that Jack is currently on a 15 date US Tour and this release has been featuring prominently. The countdown to October 20th begins.
US Tour Dates: Wild On Tour
Posted by Grubeats on September 2, 2014
I’m not going to lie, the original by Meghan Trainor freaked me out a little. Nicki Minaj and Adele had a child and she grew up to be Meghan Trainor. Don’t get me wrong, the girl has talent, but all the pink, the children’s doll houses, and the Israel Kamakawiwo?ole look alike doing a split turned me off. With that being said, Cal and Rez have brought this back for me in this weeks installment of TFT. Take away all the things I mentioned, and beef up the production, you’ve got a hit.
After Hours Tour Tickets: http://www.timefliesmusic.com/shows
Posted by Grubeats on September 2, 2014
There are mixtapes and there are albums. Although Searching Sylvan is available as a free download, I hesitate in calling it a mixtape. It’s too complete, too cohesive, too deep, too polished, & too original to be called anything but an album. This, my friends, is a comprehensive work of art. Miami native, QuESt, has supplied the magnifying glass and opened his front door. Encouraging us not to download the project, but to listen to his story, Q’s genuine appreciation for his fans and his music is a true sign of his character.
You hear it often, but this is honestly one of those records that you have to listen to from start to finish – at least the first few times through. There are tracks for every occasion, but to fully understand QuESt’s story, as a fan, I ask you press play and don’t next until the conclusion of “May 10, 2012″. Then you should press play, again.
There are countless quotable’s throughout this project, but the second half of “Automatic” exemplifies to me what this story is all about. The below is just a bite and even that doesn’t fully grasp the message he’s putting forward.
“Aspirations, responsibilities, caught between them I’m torn
Tug of war with both of my arms
Strategize the cards that I’ve drawn”
There are life lessons, struggles, successes, high highs and low lows, and most importantly an endless hunger heard through and through. It’s still too early for me to pick favorites but the few that stuck out during my first listen through; “Biscayne Blvd”, “Make It Out Alive” (…YesQuEStCanSing), “Automatic”, “Erase Me”, “Hunger”, “Struggle Rapper”, “Jon Bellions One Way To San Diego (Outro)”, & “May 10, 2012″. Shit, well that really narrows it down doesn’t it? Rather than listening to me, head over to SearchingSylvan.com for a track-by-track breakdown by Sylvan himself! There is no weak link in this 17-song masterpiece.
Production credits belong to the entire VMG roster along with Q’s in house producers, The Marvels, the homie OB, as well as other very talented beat scientists. First and foremost, 6ix, who is said to be one of QuESt’s biggest fans, is as committed to succeeding with QuESt as anyone else out there. They continue to grow and together create beautiful music. We’ve heard what Logic and 6ix can cook up together, now is our chance to hear what 6ix can do with QuESt. Feed them hot sauce with their Chipotle and hell, you’ve got bangers like “Hunger” and “Automatic” – two of my favorite songs of the year. Next is Q’s in house producers, The Marvels, who clearly know him as an artist and can craft their work to his liking. From start to finish, these guys put it on. Another one that may have caught some of you by surprise is Visionary’s own, Logic. For the avid listener, we know Logic can produce and can produce well. He’s working hard at improving this aspect of his game and his work on “Biscayne Blvd” and “No Love In The City” attribute directly to that. And don’t let me forget OB, a resident VMG contributor.
Without further adieu, I present to you QuESt’s “Searching Sylvan”. One of the best collections of music you’ll hear this year.
Extra credit reading: “5 Things to Know About Searching Sylvan” by the good people over at The Redefined.
Free Download: QuESt – Searching Sylvan [Mixtape/Free Album]