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Electronic

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VIDEO: INNER WAVE’s “Take 3” Is A Surreal Take On Covid Life

photo courtesy of the artist

 

L.A.-based band Inner Wave has announced the coming release of their fourth and latest album, Appotosis, on September 30th by releasing a music video for album track “Take 3.” Inner Wave are managed by Cosmica Artists + Records.

The track begins with a thick, honky, effortlessly funky bass line rolling alongside a languid but insistent four-on-the-floor drumbeat, both sharing space with polished, delayed synth mallets. Frontman Pablo Sotelo’s vocals are pleasingly lethargic in the way his syllables land in the pocket with the four-on-the-floor groove. Sotelo’s vocals are accompanied by delicate, echoed guitar strums and mournful, siren-like, infinitely stretched synth lines that seem to underline the melancholy and emotional fatigue of his vocals. Plucked synths that dominate during the chorus add an extra layer of dancefloor gloss that wouldn’t be out of step at a local club some night this weekend. The icing on the cake is the lush middle section that leads the song into it’s conclusion, which has an “everything but the kitchen sink” feel, while managing to remain stately in its unraveling.

The track is special in that its music video also marks Sotelo’s directorial debut. It’s a fairly simple affair, but full of symbolism for covid quarantiners. The singer spends the bulk of the video standing camera center, viewable only from the waist up, and wearing a simple white tank top. Footage of vintage road scenes are projected onto the upper part of his face (an enigmatic but potent visual, to be sure), which alternate with multi-exposed versions of himself. Some are lit from the front with a blood-red glow, some from behind with a single blinding white light, revealing a sea of fog at his feet. It’s definitely a pick for best use of minimal prop resources, and the shot where Sotelo slowly struts across the multicolored stage wearing a full military gas mask apparatus is a not-too-subtle nod to the Covid pandemic. It’s an effectively narcotic video for a lush and hypnotic track that accurately reflects the breakdown of time and space that the covid crisis created, and another artistic document to note the events of the past year and a half. Gabe Hernandez

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FRESH CUTS: On “Goosebumps,” Gregory Uhlmann Stretches Time

photo credit: Jacob Boll

L.A.-based art-folk auteur Gregory Uhlmann (guitarist and vocalist with local act Fell Runner) has today released “Goosebumps,” an atmospheric one-off single—following up on his Neighborhood Watch album of last July—on Topshelf Records.

 

The art-folk track begins humbly with a simple muted acoustic drum fill, announcing the entry of two strummed nylon-string guitars and an hypnotic, elliptic bass line. The atmosphere of the recording is warm and open, quickly inviting the listener into its center.

Uhlmann’s voice is alternately deeply resonant and choir-boy pure, with a bit of breathiness, especially during the chorus, where his voice fades into a deep ocean of reverb on a single syllable. The addition of a gooey, tremoloed synth about halfway through the song changes the flavor but does so tastefully, as does the entrance of plucked instruments, pitched somewhere between mallets and a ticking clock, along with oceanic synth pads that resemble a school of shimmering sea creatures.

By the time the swelling single-note guitar lines double Uhlmann’s vocal melody and a lone, perfectly-timed cymbal crash signals the conclusion of the song, the listener has been taken on a unique aural journey, where contrasting timbres that shouldn’t fit well together still somehow manage to do so. Gabe Hernandez

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LP Giobbi and Kaleena Zanders' Summery House Masterpiece

 With lyrics about climbing mountains, overcoming obstacles, and coming together, Carry Us is an anthemic celebration of togetherness and pride, dropped during the second week of Pride Month. The song is LP Giobbi’s fourth single of 2021 and her latest push beyond the confines of traditional house music. 

Repetitive house piano chords underscore Carry Us while Giobbi’s multidisciplinary production skills buoy the instrumental and push it toward a revelatory explosion. Giobbi’s background as a trained jazz pianist guides her timing, giving the arrangement a defined structure but not anchoring it in rigidity. Djembe drums scatter around a pulsing house beat to rejoice and convey gratitude, while hi-hats and claps enhance the feeling of comradery that the artists wanted to commit to. 

The true star in the production is Kaleena Zanders, a towering vocalist whose projection carries the song to higher and higher heights. Her intonation when she chants the song title is church-choir-captivating, almost as if her soul escapes her body for a brief moment. She’s also able to hold a note for an eternity, coming off like an intentional callback to Martha Wash’s

house classic, Carry On. But in Carry Us, Giobbi and Zanders find unity in their will to persevere. 

The song was born of a deep respect between the two artists. Giobbi says it took time to come to fruition while she worked more emotion out of the instrumental to match Zanders. “Our bond inspired me to write lyrics about friendship...Ultimately, this song is intended to invoke the feeling of being supported through thick and thin,” Zanders says of her creative process. “We went in with no boundaries and a pure love for soul music.” 

That elemental love for soul music ensures that joy is at the forefront of both artists’ work. LP Giobbi constantly reinforces her preference for showcasing women-identifying artists through her platform, and Zanders is an excellent addition to the fold. The spiritual exhalation that Zanders brings to Giobbi’s production truly sets “Carry Us” apart from run-of-the-mill EDM. 

 

 

Carry Us is out on all platforms now from Thrive Music.

 

-- Mike Floeck

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Electronic

Time: 
07:00
Band name: 
Tim Kuhl
FULL Artist Facebook address (http://...): 
https://www.facebook.com/timkuhlmusic/
Venue name: 
Union Pool
Band email: 
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VIDEO: “Retreat” Finds Dzang Soundscaping The Climate Crisis

photo courtesy of artist's bandcamp page

Dzang is the project of L.A.-based electronic producer Adam Gunther, who has released “Retreat,” the lead single from his forthcoming EP Glacial Erratic, due out July 23rd on Bandcamp, along with an accompanying music video.

The moody, downtempo instrumental track begins with ominous FM-synth bells tolling over a subtle bed of digital noise and bleeping, before a soft, swollen bass enters along with a drum pattern that resembles a ticking clock with a seizure. Gradually, sparse upper-octave synth notes and insular, beautiful synth pads enter your ears, with the entire soundscape splitting the difference between serene grooving and cautious searching. The late addition of the metallic shuffling of chains to the rhythm lends extra weight to the track, before it fades out with the same fateful bells from the beginning. Are they a warning? Or are they simply mourning?

Gunter explains that the track was meant to convey the feeling of California’s climate crisis and the need to escape. The accompanying music video “shows a talismanic bird flying through scenes of climate disruption only to arrive at an urban core, unable to escape humanity’s influence.” It’s a chilling but mesmerizing visual paired with music that is just as good at provoking deep thought about our global predicament as it is for blissing out on a late-night highway drive. Gabe Hernandez

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