[TMN Exclusive Interview] Get to Know: Kid Astray

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Kid Astray
It's Alright

Norwegian six-piece, Kid Astray, don’t represent a single genre but rather a distinct state of mind–one of youthful energy. Through a string of singles, the up ‘n coming band have shown us everything from indie rock on tracks like “No Easy Way Out” to Passion Pit-inspired electro pop like “Still Chasing Nothing.” Their latest single, “It’s Alright,” lands squarely in the center of that spectrum mixing airy guitar-driven verses with an undeniably catchy chorus powered by an addicting electronic melody. That juxtaposition is one they masterfully toy with, reimagining and transitioning between different styles all within one track. We had a chance to chat with a few members of Kid Astray–get to know them below and give their infectious latest single a spin above. Kid Astray’s debut album drops this June!

TMN: Thanks for taking the time to answer some questions! Starting from the beginning, can you tell us how you all first joined forces and the story behind the first song you all wrote together?

Jakob: No problem! We are currently stuck in our rehearsal space, preparing for our upcoming scandinavian tour, so it’s nice taking a short break. And talking about ourselves, haha.

We first met back in high school, where we were all studying music. Everyone but Even and myself knew each other from secondary school, and had already been playing together. Personally, I didn’t know anyone else on the school, but I really wanted to play in a band. I just played with anyone who wanted to play with me. I was the only drummer in our class, so Benjamin and Elizabeth didn’t really have many people to choose from, haha. We had our first rehearsal the same day we met. We played our first show after one week, playing cover songs. The first track we wrote was called ‘Eternal Gifts’ and was written in our rehearsal space at the time, Benjamin’s basement. That song is very different from what we do now, it’s pretty much a guitar based rock track without any synths. It’s still a bit nostalgic thinking about the song, since it was the track that earned us our first manager. Who knows, maybe we will use the core from the track again in the future!

TMN: Who were some of the artists you listened to growing up that you feel have inspired your sound?

Benjamin: Michael Jackson has been a huge inspiration! As a child I learned all the dances and songs by watching the videos and live DVDs. I have definitely brought elements from him into the KA sound. For example the pluck funk guitar. My whole family is a bunch of musicians, so it’s hard to name some specific artists. It’s everything from jazz and synthpop from the 80s to mums punkband! It’s all a part off our sound in a way.

TMN:Kid Astray has more members than most contemporary bands. How do you all approach studio time and how does that collaboration process work? Does it make things easier? more difficult?

Alex: There are definitely up-sides and down-sides of being six people. Traveling becomes more expensive, but also becomes more fun. Cause we’re six good friends, so we’re never bored! And even though we’re unusually many people, we’ve got more than enough to do on stage. We even have to be multi-instrumentalists to successfully get through the new album. The studio part of things works very well. We have our little mastermind Benjamin who starts on an idea, and then we all kinda get together and finish it off. I’m not really sure if things are simpler or more difficult, cause it’s the only way we know. But it definitely gives a lot of variety since so many of us have different musical preferences. Continue reading

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[Deep House] My Digital Enemy Vs. Missy Elliot – Freak My Bassline Soundz [TMN Premiere]

My Digital Enemy
My Digital Enemy Vs Missy Elliot
Freak My Bassline Soundz

Brighton duo My Digital Enemy is delivering their newest free song to you right here with a Music Ninja premiere. The Zulu Records label head’s have gone and taken Missy Elliot’s “Get Your Freak On” and mashed it into their original “Bassline Soundz.” Just in time for Miami, this show stopper is bringing two things everyone likes together, being energy and Missy Elliot. With the recent Missy hype, I’ve heard a bunch of tracks that just toss in a vocal of hers essentially only for marketing purposes, because it surely didn’t fit with what they had. My Digital Enemy did the opposite, conjuring up a quality song that will have everyone getting their freak on. Have a listen and don’t forget to grab a copy!

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[Melodic House] Racing Glaciers – Animal (Evan Gartner Remix)

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Racing Glaciers
Animal (Evan Gartner Remix)

After a largely successful remix of The Chainsmokers‘ “Kanye,” Evan Gartner continues his mesh of pop, tropical, and melodic house with a laidback remix of Racing Glaciers‘ “Animal.” This an inspired calm within this new tune, and the warm piano chords gently balance against the equally light percussion, allowing the vocals to really drive up the emotional value. There’s a fine line when tackling simplicity, and Evan has developed a definitive, but effective sound that catches your ear and gives you a chance to really feel something between the notes. Overall it’s a great tune, and Evan Gartner has been consistently putting out some swell new material. Grab the free download through Facebook here.

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[Multi-Genre] Rezonate – Rebirth EP

Rebirth EP

Rezonate‘s got something special for those with a varied taste. The Toronto producer’s new EP, Rebirth, has been released by Monstercat with a whole bunch of collaborators. Each production includes a singer, with Ashely Apollodor, Danyka Nadeau and the amazing Aloma Steele providing top notch vocals. Genres ranging from indie dance, house and future can be heard on the project, which is closed out by a piano outro performed by Austin Rafuse. Rezonate proves he’s got the chops to create anything he puts his mind to, no matter the sound. Rebirth is one hot EP, so we suggest you be careful with it when you have it for yourself. Don’t be shy, and share this around to your friends!

’Rezonate – Rebirth Ft. Ashley Apollodor’
’Rezonate – The Only Road ft. Danyka Nadeau’
’Rezonate – What We Want Ft. Aloma Steele’
’Rezonate – Outro (Performed By Austin Rafuse)’
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Pegboard Nerds Talk Monstercat, Collaborations, and Paul McCartney [TMN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW]

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Recently, TMN was granted the privilege to talk to the whimsical personalities of Alexander Odden and Michael Parsberg, the dynamic duo behind Pegboard Nerds. Before kicking off two major releases with Monstercat–Bring The Madness: The Remixes EP and their feature on Monstercat’s 021 Perspective Compilation–we had a chance to sit down with them in NYC’s Webster Hall right before they threw down a massive set.

Excision & Pegboard Nerds
Bring The Madness (Ft. Mayor Apeshit)

TMN: How’s it feel to be playing at Webster Hall in NYC? This is your second time back right?

Alex: Being back at Webster Hall feels fuckin’ awesome. It’s kinda intimidating too you know because it’s such a stable trademark of New York so you gotta be on point and deliver.

Michael: Same.

Alex: (Laughs) You can’t say same!

TMN: Best response yet. How did you guys first get involved with Monstercat and how do you feel about the future of the label?

Michael: Well it started back in 2012, early, early twelve. A friend from Australia actually pitched one of our songs to Monstercat because they were needing a track for one of their compilations and it kinda just went on from there. They wanted one more track, one more track, one more track, and it went on, went on, went on and all the way up. Yeah, so that’s how we started.

Then you asked about the future of the label, right? It’s difficult to predict, but I think they have a good track record and a good following, and the philosophy of the label is really good. They’re not focusing on doing the next big Hardwell, Axwell, Made-well, Big-well, Aoki-well, Sleep-well, whatever. They just wanna do great new talent.

Continue reading

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Azad Right Ft. Harry Hudson – If I Die (Prod. By HUCCI) [TMN PREMIERE]

AZAD
AzadRight
If I Die Ft. Harry Hudson (Prod. By HUCCI)

We may be right, smack-dab in the middle of Miami Music Week, but right now, our ears are fully fixated on some hip hop at the moment, and we have LA-based Azad Right to thank for that.

Fresh off his hit “When You Know,” and a handful of SXSW shows (one of which we had the pleasure of catching), this intellectual lyricist has teamed up with Harry Hudson and blogosphere darling Hucci for a brand new track. As we’ve come to expect from this up-and-coming rapper, the story telling ability is well showcased, articulating exactly what he wants the listener to pull from his lyrics. It’s drenched with thoughtful emotion that hangs on Right’s every word, boasting a powerful message of hope for his career, his fan base, and the industry, in general.

HUCCI adds plenty of intrigue to the track as well, painting the perfect backdrop with a soaring piano riff, rolling hi-hats, and a spattering of multiple vocal samples. The two seem to be a match made in heaven, playing off each other’s talents in perfect harmony.

“If I Die” is the second track to Azad’s highly anticipated, upcoming EP this 2015. Make sure to follow him on soundcloud so you can keep tabs on upcoming releases. And if we were you, we’d make sure to catch a live show. After seeing him rock an intimate crowd in Austin, it’s no wonder he’s opened for icons such as Kendrick Lamar, The Game, Black Milk, Mos Def, Jay Rock, Slaughterhouse and Mobb Deep.

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[Event Review] CRSSD Festival – San Diego, 3/14-15

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As festival season is upon us, many festival go-ers are itching to go to Coachella, especially when talking about the perfect California weather. Goldenvoice, hosts of Coachella, and FNGRS CRSSD have teamed up to create CRSSD Festival, a solution for those who can’t make it to the more high-profile festivals but still want to get a taste of the all-around chill California vibe. With that said, CRSSD festival was the perfect portrayal of sunny San Diego and what it represents.

The first ever CRSSD fest took place in the Waterfront Park from March 14 and 15, and featured a lineup with big names like Chromeo, Odesza, Flight Facilities and Empire of the Sun. While these unique electronic acts headlined the main stage a.k.a “Ocean View Live”, what stuck out the most to us was “The Palms” stage, which was decorated to fit a more laid-back and tropical vibe. Ranging from nu-disco to tropical house, the stage features some of the frontrunners of the dance scene, including names like Bakermat, Thomas Jack, Bixel Boys, Giraffage and Kaytranada. The middle stage, which was named “City Steps”, featured some heavyhitting house acts that span from future bass to G-House, notably Amtrac, Tensnake, James Murphy and Simian Mobile Disco.

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’MNEK – Wrote A Song About You (Kaytranada Edition)’
’Giraffage – Hello’

Being that it was a debut festival, CRSSD fest did a phenomenal job of planning and set up. With KCRW Music Director Jason Bentley hosting the festival and filling in between sets with the crowd’s favorite music, there was never a dull moment at the park. Unlike some other major festivals, the Waterfront Park was the perfect size venue for CRSSD fest. The three stages were all easily reachable from one end to another, without overshadowing each other.

Now onto the stars of the show. The best acts on Saturday were undoubtedly Kaytranada and Giraffage. With back to back sets at “The Palms” stage, the two talented artists brought the house down with their immensely high energy performances. From the future bounce mastermind to the quirky creative genius, the two spun tune after tune that got the crowd going nuts. Empire of the Sun also put out an epic performance with their signature glamorous set up with stage dancers. There was no better way to close out the night after a long day of sweating and dancing. Continue reading

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