[MP3 Playlist] Indie Dojo (December 2016 Round #2)

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We’re making a list, checking it twice. We don’t care who’s naughty or nice ’cause we’re gonna sharing this list of damn good indie music with you either way.

’Dorsalfins – High Low’
’Computer Magic – Dimensions’
’bloodmoon – homeland’
’jarles kavhellen – The Ghost in Your Smile’
’Over the Trees – Hello Oslo’
’Om Shanka – Holy Man’
’Slumbers – Doboom Soom’
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Darku J x Styles&Complete feat. SISTERWIFE – Kick In The Bass [TMN Premiere]

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We love a good music video. We love a great one even more and that’s what we have for you today in this Music Ninja Premiere. The song + video comes to us from a threeway collaboration between New York’s Darku J, the LA duo Styles&Complete, as well as the newcomer vocalist SISTERWIFE.

Their song “Kick In The Bass” is something to be cherished by bassheads everywhere. It’s not your typical track as it melds electro with breakbeat, a trend that has been steadily gaining pace within the last several months. Together, Darku J and Styles&Complete put together one of the more memorable songs within this style, and SISTERWIFE is a big part of that. Her vocal performance is magnificent; you’ll be singing the lyrics in no time. With the music video, we get something that is just as unique and fun. We won’t dive into the exact details. You’ll have to just watch and enjoy.

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[MP3 Playlist] Indie Dojo (December 2016 Round #1)

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From here on out, we are on the fast track to the end of the year. So if you need a moment to ground yourself, you can stop right here. Listen to an Indie Dojo or two or three. It’s like the gift that keeps on giving.

’Darling James – God’s Graffiti’
’Coach Bombay – The Rhythm of the Night’
’George Ogilvie – October’
’Runabay – You I Know’
’The Winter Gypsy – Page I’
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[Electro] Jameston Thieves – Cookie Butter EP

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Two of our favorite camps have come together on an EP that is just out of this world. The EP is Cookie Butter by the astonishingly talented Jameston Thieves who got Uprise Music to back this project. There are lots of notable producers out there making big bucks, but few, if any, come close to JT.

With Cookie Butter we get four singles, including a collaboration with Aaron Jackson and Megan Hamilton. Together these three kick off the EP with “Wonder,” a dynamic single whose composition shifts shape throughout the entire song. It’s like a whole bunch of good songs in one, which the same can be said for “Circadian Rhythm.” If by now you haven’t noticed that JT’s sound design is absolutely maddening then “Shottahs” will take care of you. Lastly, “Back In It” is what may be the most wacky song on the project. It’s a fun listen, even by Jameston Thieve’s standards. Cookie Butter is now available on digital services, so grab it!

’Jameston Thieves & Aaron Jackson – Wonder (Ft. Megan Hamilton)’
’Jameston Thieves – Circadian Riddim’
’Jameston Thieves – Shottahs’
’Jameston Thieves – Back In It’
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[MP3 Playlist] Indie Dojo (November 2016 Round #3)

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Nothing in this world is really for certain. Except for death & taxes….and an Indie Dojo to lay your ears on every Tuesday.

’Paper Pilots – Automatic’
’Former Faces – Back Up a Minute’
’Year of Suns – The Undertow’
’Elli Schoen – Hard Heart’
’Nick Wilson – In Your Eyes’
’Swan Levitt – ALIVE’
’Lynette Williams – No Ordinary Love’
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[NEW] The xx – On Hold

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After teasing fans with mysterious clips on their Spotify page, The xx have officially returned today with a stunning new single and an album on the way. During their 3 year hiatus, die-hard fans (myself included) could take solace in In Colour, the debut solo outing from Jamie xx, the trio’s masterful producer. On that project, Jamie got a chance to depart from the somber sound of his band delving deeper into the elements of dance music he had already subtly showcased on The xx’s first two albums. With the help of an incredible Idris Muhammad sample, Jamie xx and bandmate Romy Croft crafted one of 2015’s best songs with “Loud Places,” which held a triumphant, uplifting vibe unlike anything we’d heard from the group.

As I speculated and waited for new music, I couldn’t help but wonder how Jamie’s ‘colour’ might impact The xx’s 3rd album. Today we get the answer with “On Hold”–the perfect marriage between The xx’s heart-wrenching aura and Jamie’s matured sound. While the song features complex, 4×4 percussion, Jamie employs filters and dramatic pads to make room for his bandmates’ signature reverb-ed guitar and heart breaking vocals. As the song approaches its most stark moment, the chorus erupts with an irresistible Hall & Oates sample that oozes pure joy.

At it’s core “On Hold” tells the tale of letting someone go and the disappointment of them moving on, but its potent chorus offers a light at the end of the tunnel–one that was just flickering on their last album, Coexist. 

I See You, the third studio album from The xx, is out on January 13th via Young Turks–you can pre-order it here. We’ll have this one on repeat while we wait.

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[Electronic] Nick Hook – Relationships (Album)

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Electronic music and hip-hop have always had a unique relationship. Despite the fact that they, in many ways, evolved from similar revolutionary production techniques, they don’t always find ideal synergy. Through out his budding career, NY-based producer Nick Hook has continually blurred lines between the two with a taste that proves an understanding of music outside of genre constraints. That versatility is a direct product of his diverse background in the industry starting as a multi-genre guitarist and evolving into a producer who’s worked with Young Thug, Run the Jewels, DJ Rashad, Hudson Mohawke and Baauer among others (and that’s leaving out the star-studded list of collaborators in the rock world.)

Relationships, his debut album, serves as a triumphant crescendo on his ascension bringing in too many collaborators to list in a way that feels far more natural than similarly bold projects. Perhaps the secret falls in the album name–Hook seems to have a genuine understanding of the artists he’s working with: allowing their input without ever losing site of cohesion.

The album carries a steadily wavy, experimental vibe through out from the off-kilter, Makonnen-featuring ballad “All Alone” to Awful Records posse cut “Pro-Choice,” a typically absurd outing for the ATLiens. At the same time, Hook’s not afraid to turn things up with the heavy-hitting Grime cut “Can’t Tell Me Nothing,” posthumously DJ Rashad-assisted “+3,” east coast cypher “Live While I’m Livin,” and “Head,” perhaps the hardest-hitting song thanks to 21Savage. All that variation is tied together by the project’s brief, but gorgeous, instrumental moments such as “Forever” and “Evolisontherise,” which features Hudson Mohawke. 

Relationships, which is out now on Fool’s Gold Records, is an ambitious outing that could’ve gone wrong had it not been put together so thoughtfully. Rather, it plays out as a sonic adventure with something for everyone but also the capacity to open minds by placing songs in the right context. Give the whole project a listen below and grab a copy here if you like what you hear.

’Nick Hook – +3 feat. DJ Rashad, DJ Paypal & Nasty Nigel’
’Nick Hook – Pro
Choice feat. Black Kray, Father, Michael Christmas & KCSB’
’Nick Hook – Gucci’s feat. 24hrs’
’Nick Hook – Evolisontherise feat. Hudson Mohawke’
’Nick Hook – Another Way feat. Spank Rock’
’Nick Hook – Forever’
’Nick Hook – Dive For You feat. Junglepussy & Prefuse 73’
’Nick Hook feat. Novelist – Can’t Tell Me Nothing’
’Nick Hook – All Alone feat. iLoveMakonnen’
’Nick Hook – Bhu Hum feat. Damien Hagglund’
’Nick Hook – Live While I’m Livin’ feat. Meyhem Lauren & Superhero Killer’
’Nick Hook – Silk Pants’
’Nick Hook – Head feat. 21 Savage & Bulletproof Dolphin’
’Nick Hook – Need 2 B feat. Rahel’
’Nick Hook – Lovesong feat. Nasty Nigel’
’Nick Hook – The Infinite Loop feat. DJ Rashad, Chino Moreno & Nasty Nigel’
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