Arjun Vagale & Ramiro Lopez – We Are Odd

Arjun Vagale & Ramiro Lopez - We Are Odd

Odd Recordings is an Indo-Spanish cross-pollinized techno label that is the brainchild of producers Arjun Vagale and Ramiro Lopez. The enigmatic duo had already been making waves last year with their so-called “oddCAST”, but now the time has come for the first official release on their label. The “We Are Odd” EP features two tracks, which have been produced by the label bosses themselves. It’s a promising EP that indicates a bold statement of intent for the label, so I suggest you keep an eye on the releases that will follow!

Opening track “Oddball” packs quite a punch. Menacing drums shuffle alongside trippy arpeggios and monotone vocal parts. The first three minutes of the track are fairly straightforward, but during the (somewhat unnerving) break a new synth is introduced, which brings some more purpose and excitement to the arrangement. Some say strength lies in simplicity and that’s definitely the case for this track.

“Even Flow” brings some more atmospheric elements into the mix. Early on, a mysterious pad sets the tone for the track, while a rolling percussion section makes its way to the foreground. At the 1:45 mark the tone shifts drastically when the pad is being replaced by a determined, rhythmic lead. Additional pads, a deep bassline and squealing arpeggios bring some more depth and variation to this interesting journey, that can also be described as a little odd…

“We Are Odd” is scheduled for release on January 20th on Odd Recordings.

Follow Arjun Vagale: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Ramiro Lopez: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Odd Recordings: SoundCloud / Facebook

Timmo – System

Timmo - System

Timmo returns to the grand Swedish label Drumcode for his second solo EP, following up 2014’s “We Beat On,” which included the unforgettable “Canvas.” The new release, “System,” is easily a worthy successor, featuring four massive tunes without a single dull moment.

The opener, “Intensify,” has been a mainstay in Adam Beyer’s sets for months, and proves that you don’t need harsh drums and booming bass to create a dancefloor weapon. This track is driven mostly by the percussion, which shifts constantly, from low rides to shakers to light claves. Running throughout, following and complementing the beat is a low growling bass hook that is unmistakable and heralds the beginning of the greatest party the world has ever seen.

“The Maze” is next, with heavier vibes built to move a crowd. The lead is fashioned from a chord pattern, using a sound that merges the bionic and the organic, automated in psychedelic waves. Meanwhile, in Timmo’s signature fashion, a glowing pad gives the track another dimension of life, making it clear that this masterpiece will be remembered for ages to come.

The title track keeps things going strong, laying down a steady, thumping kick and a dark bassline tuned for maximum power. The hats roll effortlessly over the beat, ushering in the chaotic, torrential lead. The result is a dangerously energetic tune that conveys imagery of peak time at an underground rave, or possibly a global-scale war against robots.

Closing the package is “Together,” its bold low-ends shape the groove into something a bit deeper. This effect is magnified through the use of a percussive hook and fluffy hats, setting the track apart from the other three. The retro-style vocals complete the emotion, giving off vibes that may be slightly melancholic, but also hopeful.

“System” will be released on Drumcode on January 23rd.

Follow Timmo: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Drumcode: SoundCloud / Facebook

Gary Beck – Stupid Advert EP

Gary Beck - Stupid Advert EP

Gary Beck is back on his label BEK Audio with his new “Stupid Advert” EP. This time around the Glasgow-based producer has provided three tunes that are a bit different than any of his previous releases, but still feature his signature cycle of steady builds and releases.

The title track features a solid, steady bass line, which is accented with rolled snares and soft rides that form the backbone of the groove. A hypnotic hook folds in and out of the mix, along with periodic filtered stabs that create a sinister air.

Next up, “Concraza” uses a groaning synth pattern in the bass range, eventually bringing in flowing hats and a breathy pad. A broken vocal works wonders in giving the tune an extra bit of originality. Of all the tracks on the EP, this one probably calls back the most to previous Beck tunes stylistically.

Finally, “ST11” is pure darkness. The groove is minimalistic, with a crunchy percussion rhythm that is offset from the rest of the beat and soft, resonant stabs. Eventually a shimmering background becomes more prominent as the tune is lead into the main break. This track definitely knows where it is going, keeping a definite gloom and warehouse vibes throughout.

Gary Beck’s “Stupid Advert EP” is out now on BEK Audio. You can check out the full previews over at Juno Download.

Follow Gary Beck: SoundCloud / Facebook
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Eric Sneo – Chord Challenge / Resistance

Eric Sneo - Chord Challenge / Resistance

It’s been a little over three years since Eric Sneo joined the ranks of Christian Smith’s Tronic label and he has been a productive member since then. With countless releases on the label (even including an album) and a body of work dating back at least twenty years, the techno veteran has definitely made his mark on the techno scene. Before the year comes to a close, the German producer is releasing this two track EP, which is also a sneak peak of his upcoming album that will be released on February 20th next year. Check it out below.

“Chord Challenge” is a light, melodic techno track that caught my attention on the first listen. Sneo’s use of a bouncy bassline and a light, plucky melody is surprising as well as intriguing. Together with brisk pads and his signature toms, he has managed to create an upbeat track that boasts an effortless energy.

“Resistance (Part 1)” is more rigid instead of playful and is not as convincing as the previous track. This drum-fueled production is driven by a repetitive lead, which stays the same all the way through the end. Expanding the range of elements wouldn’t be a bad thing here, for some more variation is definitely warranted in this track.

Eric Sneo’s “Chord Challenge / Resistance” EP will be out today on Tronic.

Follow Eric Sneo: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Tronic: SoundCloud / Facebook

Drumcomplex & Roel Salemink – Ampex

Drumcomplex & Roel Salemink - Ampex

Drumcomplex & Roel Salemink have joined forces again for their third EP on Carl Cox’s Intec label. Having also released their debut album on the label in 2014, the producer duo is slowly becoming a household name, but yet they continue to strive forward instead of settling down. The EP features two tracks, which merge innovation with the well-tested elements from the duo’s signature sound. A great showcase for their combined powers!

“Ampex” features a variety of percussion layers that give the track depth, but also a somewhat restless undertone. It forms a solid foundation for the melodic hook that kicks in around the 30 second mark, which creates an intriguing, almost hallucinating vibe. Pushed forward by the increasing tension of the rolling toms, the track continues its wild ride until the first break provides a short breather. From there on the insanity continues for a minute or so, but then the track is slowly being brought to a close.

“Eighties” is less intense. The track opens with a minimal beat, which is coupled with an arpeggiated synth. The first half of the track is a little monotonous, but the break at 3 minutes brings a sudden change when a roaring bass sequence slowly makes its entrance. With a compelling force, it completely takes over the second half of the track, only being accompanied by the arpeggiated melody on a few occasions. It’s a peak time track that boasts a raw energy and a subtle sense of excitement.

The “Ampex” EP is out now on Intec Digital.

Follow Drumcomplex: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Roel Salemink: SoundCloud / Facebook
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Premiere: Andrea Frisina – Upsilon Andromedae (Requiem For Theremin)

Andrea Frisina - Titawin EP

It seems that Andrea Frisina has been busy in the studio, for it was less than a month after bringing out “Voyage From Zeta Reticuli” when he announced the release of the “Titawin EP”. The EP features two tracks, called “Terra Cava” and “Upsilon Andromedae (Requiem For Theremin)”, of which we’ll be premiering the second one. We also had a chat with Andrea about his music and his label. Check it out below.

When Andrea talks about his music, he gets straight to the point. He describes his sound as “mystic” and “eclectic”. These adjectives apply to his Gate Null imprint as well, he says. “I try to look for musicality into the eclecticism. It’s a must to create something huge, but at the same time there has to be a signature, something noticeable. It can be an outstanding melody, some mystic chords, or the whole track’s arrangement.”

Andrea admits that he’s not always on the lookout for demos, but they still try to listen to everything that gets sent in to Gate Null. It doesn’t really matter if the artist is famous or not. “If something really impresses me, I’m happy to sign it.” It’s all about transmitting strong emotions to the listener and releasing something that’s memorable and striking.

When discussing inspiration for the “Titawin EP”, Andrea points out that a lot of titles for his releases are astronomy references. The universe is a big source of inspiration for him, but definitely not the only one. When creating a new track, his production process is not always the same. It also depends on the production elements he has lying around at that moment. “It’s evident that I always use some specific elements in my tracks”, he says. “It’s important that every track has my signature sound.”

Andrea recalls a quote that someone once said to him. “There’s something very mystical about Andrea Frisina’s music”. This sentiment gets exactly to the point of what he’s trying to do. He concludes: “Music must transmit emotions, otherwise it’s not music.” That’s something we definitely agree with over here at Side of Groove.

“Upsilon Andromedae” doesn’t waste any time and kicks off with dynamic percussion and captivating synths. The main element in this track is a calm and drawn out pad (which actually is a modulated Theremin sound) that gives the track a chill vibe. Together with the other melodic layers it pushes the track forward until sweeping noise effects bring the track to a sudden halt at the three minute mark. From there on, the melody slowly fades in again and continues to dominate the track with an additional melodic stab.

Andrea Frisina’s “Titawin EP” will be out on November 28th on Gate Null Recordings.

Follow Andrea Frisina: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Gate Null: SoundCloud / Facebook

Skober – Satisbeat

Skober - Satisbeat

Ukrainian producer Skober is unstoppable and continues to impress friends and foes with original tracks, collaborations and remixes. Among those was his chart-topping remix of Monika Kruse’s “Highway No. 4”, which was his first appearance on Terminal M. A full EP was bound to follow and now the time has come. Skober is serving up a beautiful three-tracker, which comes in his distinct, melodic style. But don’t take my word for it. See for yourself!

The EP opens with the long awaited “Satisbeat”. Right from the start, the suspense is built up with a melodic riff that’s slowly fading in. Paired with ethereal pads and joyous vocal mutters, Skober creates a lush atmosphere, which is offset by a jittery snare loop in order to keep the listener grounded. Despite having some cold tendencies, this track is guaranteed to bring you some comfort in this fall season.

“Around You” boasts shuffling hi-hats and resonant vocal loops. Unlike the previous track, the ambience is chilling and the melodic sections are rigid. A roaring bass section adds some depth to the track and also gives it structure. The journey remains consistent and to the point. It doesn’t contain many surprises.

Final track “Black Sun” takes its time to build up. It opens with a minimal beat and light, metallic bleeps, but it doesn’t take long before a subtle pad and a rumbling bassline are introduced, which slowly make their way to the foreground. The melodic portion of the track is fully unleashed during the break, where an enticing pad crescendo immediately draws you in. This is repeated around the 4:30 mark, before the track slowly fades out towards the end.

“Satisbeat” is out now on Terminal M.

Follow Skober: SoundCloud / Facebook
Follow Terminal M: SoundCloud / Facebook