[Festival Review] Outside Lands IX : Revisiting the Most Memorable Acts of the Weekend

OSL7In continuing to build on the foundation laid nine years ago, Another Planet Entertainment has once again outdone themselves; the final product being yet another successfully executed Outside Lands Music & Arts Festival. The 2016 version – keen on replicating the successes of previous iterations – was calculated in its approach, careful not to break the trends and quirks that have made it such a mainstay to the community.


Instead, APE kept what has worked and improved upon it; meaning deeper lineups, aesthetically more impressive sound and lighting productions, finally allowing payment via RFID-enabled festival wristbands, and a fair amount of side stages to keep all wandering pseudo-bohemians well occupied. Unfortunately, along with the quality improvements also came a pretty substantial price adjustment – putting on a nationally recognized festival is big business, after all.

Those willing to stomach the uptick were treated to an especially diverse lineup ranging from saxophone playing acts like Kamasi Washington and GRiZ, nostalgia-inducing pop rock outfit Third Eye Blind, platinum (and featureless) hip hop artist J.Cole, EDM prodigy Zedd, the Jack-of-all-trades Garratt, and rags to riches rapper Anderson .Paak.

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[Chill] Oh Wonder – White Blood

Oh Wonder
White Blood

We’re always excited for the first of the month because, besides pay day, it also means there’s new music from Oh Wonder. Since unveiling their debut track back in September and subsequently releasing monthly tracks for a year leading up to their album, the UK vocalists/production duo have been amassing an enormous following, seemingly growing with each release. The fact that they’ve already got sold out shows booked, stands as a testament to the power of the Internet to empower independent artists.

This morning, we get “White Blood,” which continues to expand on their aesthetic. While tracks have varied in tempo, “Lose It” probably being the most upbeat, they’ve all maintained the emotional, duet vocals that make their sound so enticing. Their latest falls more on the downtempo side of things slowly building with gorgeous piano and subdued percussion. Give it a listen above. “White Blood” is tenth track they’ve released thus far meaning we’ve only got a couple more to go before their debut drops on September 4th. As we await the next track, due out on July 1st, we’ll be spending plenty of time on their Soundcloud page.

P.S. Oh Wonder also left a note in the Soundcloud description to learn more about the story behind the artwork for this single provided by Steven Keating at their website.

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[Progressive House] Oh Wonder – All We Do (Steve James Remix)

Oh Wonder
All We Do (Steve James Remix)

Oh Wonder has become one of our favorite’s acts to see blossom over the past couple of months. Their combination of female and male vocal counterparts and monthly release schedule have kept the flow of music in just the right amount, but every release seems to be more passionate than its predecessor (even when we think this is not possible). The indie-electronic pair’s single “All We Do” has received its fair share of remixes, but 16-year-old producer Steve James just blew them all out of the water with his rework of the emotional single.

Despite his youth, Steve James has only been shooting upward with his aggressive yet uplifting remixes of ZHU, Dillon Francis, and many more, but this remix of Oh Wonder by the Pittsburgh producer may be his most gorgeous masterpiece to date. Providing a sentimental piano line to add depth to duo’s heart-wrenching croons, James pours empathy, grief, fervor, and love into a synth toppling that could be defined progressive house and progressive trance. Regardless of the label, Steve James’s remix resembles the early works of Arty and Armin van Buuren who pioneered the progressive trance/progressive house movements.

His remix of “All We Do” is only available for free download for 24 hours so be sure to grab your own copy here before tomorrow at noon.

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[Chill] Oh Wonder – Technicolor Beat

Oh Wonder
Technicolour Beat

Since the release of Oh Wonder‘s first single back in September, it has been incredible to see their following grow with their monthly singles, and deservedly so. The UK-based duo have managed to strike the perfect chord between supreme vocal harmonies, expertly crafted piano and the optimal amount of electronic elements–their latest release is no different. “Technicolor Beat” stays minimal through out furthering their sound and musical narrative. True to it’s name, though, the layering on the song gives it a full, lush feel all the while keeping things beautifully mellow. With 6 months, and songs, out now, we’ve officially heard half of Oh Wonder’s debut album and we couldn’t be more excited to hear what the second half has in store. Enjoy this one above and look out for Oh Wonder’s next release on the first of April.

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[Sensual] Oh Wonder – The Rain (StéLouse Edition)

Oh Wonder
The Rain (StéLouse edition)

Oh Wonder has become quite the household name lately. They continue to dominate with every release and have already seen a multitude of remixes from some phenomenal names. The latest up is StéLouse, whose prowess as a producer has spanned over multiple successful remixes and his noteworthy EP, The City. This edit is a much more reserved product than we’ve seen previously from StéLouse, but it’s a very welcome change of pace. He even states this in the SoundCloud description:

I wanted to maintain the beauty and subtlety of the vocal. Just an attempt to give the song a little twist without ruining the original vibe.

He did exactly that. Subtly adding the perfect amount of additional percussive elements and synths, this version of “The Rain” holds up a golden standard that we’ve seen with StéLouse on his remixing capabilities. This tune just goes to show how much simplicity and tact can really bring out the best in a song when done correctly. Don’t forget to grab a download and enjoy!

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Oh Wonder – Body Gold (LUCA LUSH Remix) [TMN Premiere]

Oh Wonder
Body Gold (LUCA LUSH Remix)

LUCA LUSH is back with another crazy flip, and he’s taken on one of the most exciting new groups to debut from last year, Oh Wonder. The alaya member has become comfortable with his high energy remixes, and he really has juiced up Oh Wonder in a fun and futuristic fashion. Hopping from deep house style basses to sweltering nu disco synths, this remix never sits stagnant for a moment. He also preserved just the right amount of vocals to bring a little emotion into the club like he has done so well previously. On a different but equally exciting note, we’ve caught wind that he has a tune coming up with Dirty Chocolate to be released on alaya in the near future, so enjoy this phenomenal flip in the mean time and keeps your eyes peeled for that new collaboration! [LUCA LUSH on SoundCloud Facebook Twitter]

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[Chill] Oh Wonder – The Rain

Oh Wonder
The Rain

Oh Wonder has always kept a mysterious profile, as there’s little known about the British indie duo. What we do know, however, is that their release of a new song on the first of every month is always something to look forward to. For their first release of 2015, we have “The Rain”, a chill piece featuring a lo-fi approach and the group’s distinctive vocals. The way the they harmonize in octaves is highly addicting and the pure acoustic vibe of the tune, in some ways, resembles the sound of Daughter. As the synth comes in, the feel-good melody sounds oh so mellow. Even with its minimal vibe. you’ll be impressed by the complexity towards the end of the buildup, further cementing their original sound.

I’ve given all my love to you.
These chilling words will hit you right in the feels. Even though Oh Wonder only have five releases, they’ve quickly become a TMN favorite and accumulated well over a million spins on their SoundCloud page. Their album, an accumulation of these monthly gems, will be coming out in September 2015. Let your emotions marinade for a second and enjoy this relaxing goodness.

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