Machine Life

machinelife1While they’re hard at work putting the finishing touches on their first official single release (due out this fall), the beauties over at Machine Life were kind enough to ask for a contribution to their fantastic Eclectronic Sessions series, all of which is currently up on their SoundCloud. The below result is a freewheeling attempt to cover as much space as possible without too great of a sacrifice to the level of groove. For a listing of tracks, please check out the version on MixCloud.

Bicycles, Muscles, Cigarettes


A mix for bike riding, working out, and smoking cigarettes on a porch.

Rich as Stink


A configuration of noisy black dots. A mix for cosmic tomfoolery or reading Alice Munro.

Download: Rich as Stink

When You Cut Your Finger, Bandage the Knife



A 28 minute mix for casual nodding.

When You Cut Your Finger, Bandage the Knife


Groundislava (which I prefer to pronounce as an Eastern European city) will be dropping an LP on Friends of Friends come August, but for now we have the TV Dream EP to tide us over. Much like the rest of the Wedidit Collective members, Groundislava specializes in experimental electronic (or something) layering over a fairly straight forward hip hop back beat. Recently, his take tends to favor hauntingly outdated synthesizers; case in point “Reflecting.”

“Reflecting” sounds like the Bowser’s Castle levels in Super Mario, if you happen to have dropped some acid before plugging in your SNES. Check it out below and peep the rest of the TV Dream EP.

Cosmic sound

Stephen Farris does some mind-bending work with samples and synths.  His tunes hover around the fringes of hip-hop and electronica, with some heavy psychedelic influences.  Back in 2010, he released VHS Vision under the Cosmic Sound moniker.  It is now just getting a proper release thanks to Crash Symbols.

The album crafts some stunning beats from obscure tape samples and twisted synths.  There is a raw, dreamlike quality to the sound that reaches its peak on songs like “Bear Auras” and “Wind Shine.”  The former has hints of Teebs but with some Kenlo Craqnuques and Com Truise thrown in.  Stream VHS Vision below and buy it here.

Wilted trees only grow new branches

Apollo Brown and O.C. are working on an LP together.  This can only lead to something massive.  Apollo, of the Mello Music Group, is a fantastic beat purveyor that crafted one of the best instrumental hip-hop albums last year.  And O.C….is O.C.  In his own words, “the name alone holds godly“.  The first single from their album has just surfaced and it is exactly as good as you would imagine.  The beat is a soulful head snapper; and O.C. effortlessly delivers a slew of pitch-perfect lines.  With all of the young guns getting hyped nowadays its somehow refreshing to hear a rapper bitch about the industry.  Doesn’t get more classic than that.

Huh What and Where: Juj

After our coverage of Huh What and Where’s Bahwee and Ta-Ku, I bet you thought we were done with the label. Think again! We just like to keep you on your toes. After all, complacency is just a harbinger of death. So you’re welcome.

Out of the HW&W offerings, Juj is by far the glitchiest cat. His tracks warble and loom in a purgatory between straight hip-hop beats and dance tracks. But if this is what purgatory is like, I’m glad I skipped out on the baptism. Check out “My Room” and “Sunday Bouncer” below. “My Room” has more clicks than your local high school (homonyms are cool for puns still, right….right?) and “Sunday Bouncer” is hypnotic looping at its freshest, complete with the Dilla-certified Mantronix “King of the Beats” siren sample

Download the rest of the magnificently odd Slack beat-tape at the HW&W BandCamp for the affordable price of free.99

Huh What and Where: Ta-Ku

While previous Huh What & Where artist Bahwee was more of a straight-up beat producer, with tiltneck tracks hovering around the 2 minute mark, Ta-Ku is more of an instrumental composer. His eleventh-hour celebrating album Latenyc is the product of a recent trip to New York and the eight tracks do not disappoint. Ta-Ku’s slow-burning, late night funk is the perfect music to come home to. Latenyc is staring out the metro into the glimmering lights of the subway tunnel on your way home, Latenyc is the car ride to a quick food pit-stop before bed, and Latenyc is that last smoke and drink of the night where you reminisce with your company of choice about what made that night just right.

SJP” is a smooth building instrumental that is just the right blend of mellow and upbeat. It’s perfect mood music for when you’re not at the club anymore, but you’re certainly not quite ready to call it quits. “Mahal” is a glitch-beat R&B joint featuring Chet Faker that burns like a Cuban cigar.

Check out the rest of Latenyc at the HW&W BandCamp, where the album can also be bought for $5.

Huh What and Where: Bahwee

I was recently fortunate enough to stumble upon the LA-based label Huh What & Where, and the roster of talent on it is out of this world. According to the label’s BandCamp, “This is a label started by friends out of a college dorm. Created by artists for artists, this isn’t too deep.Our only goal is to share with you the things that move/inspire us.”

They may modestly assert the music isn’t deep, but there’s no arguing that HW&W’s line-up is deeper than the Yankees’. Thus, it’s only fair to give the producers on the label their own separate posts.

First off is Bahwee, who has three releases out on HW&W that illustrate how much of a beat artisan he truly is. Bahwee gives off a lo-key headnoddin’ vibe with tracks that sample funk, soul, flamenco, and Bollywood. Regardless of sample or influence, Bahwee is as smooth as can be. Below are two tracks from different tapes. “Pistol Pete” is a rollicking beat that is equal parts G-funk and Renaissance Fair, like jousting in a low-rider. It’s off Bahwee’s Headnodders Vol. II, which is a superb work that explores various forms of instrumental hip-hop. “Holla Back” is a more down-tempo track that is crystalline and sharp and of the more late night Sketches. Every  note here sounds like it’s being played on empty champagne glasses strewn about from a great night out.

Bahwee’s stuff is available at the HW&W BandCampHeadnodders Vol. II and Sketches are free, and Flavors is certainly worth the $10 price tag.