Handbraekes Surprise and Tantalize with New EP, #2


Released on May 5th, the EP merges the unique styles of both members of the duo.

Photo from we-are-awesome.com

Appropriately titled #2, the second release from the duo beautifully merges the individual styles of both members while creating a sound that is unique and completely their own. Unlike the first EP, where you could distinguish who influenced each song, #2 completely immerses you in an impeccable union of French and German electro.

“Bravo,” the first and longest of the four songs, represents the classic style that Handbraekes achieves with their sound. While it still is distinguishable from modern electronic music, the track has a traditional house music vibe that at points seems monotonous but prepares you for the rest of the EP.

“Paroat” starts with an industrial beat and a laser that sounds like it came right out of Star Wars. From the beginning of the song, you’re hit with a heavy, in-your-face synth that might turn some people away from listening to the rest of the EP. However, the drawn-out build up that starts mid-song captivates and lures you in to see where they will go with this obscure and Oizo-like sound.

As the next song, “Chyna,” begins, you are led to believe that normalcy will finally take hold. Conversely, a fast-paced and erratic beat takes over the calming sounds that start the song.  The best part of this particular track is the snippets of vocals inserted in just the right places. The fusion of Boys Noize and Mr. Oizo is most evident in this song, as you can hear both of their styles clashing to create an instant dance floor hit.

Differentiating from any other sound presented on the EP, “Grind Go” will likely be the most popular song due to it being the most relatable to anything in electronic music today. The slowed-down disco tune soothes the soul, almost as if they knew how jarring and chaotic the rest of the EP was. The final track is their remedy and smooth transition back into reality.  “Grind Go” is a perfect way to end this musical adventure, even if it does end abruptly.

#2 is a breath of fresh air in an industry that is willing to churn out whatever will make money. Handbraekes is able to establish themselves with a sound different from anything you’ll find anywhere, and different doesn’t necessarily mean bad. Even if you’re not hooked with the first couple of tracks, don’t slam on the brakes for this EP.




Fresh Wet Paint: ODESZA Talks Influences, Personal Achievements & More


By Samantha Doucette

Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight met at Western Washington University where they both were new to experimenting with electronic music. After being introduced by a mutual friend, they realized they had the same taste in music. Thus, ODESZA was formed.

Started as a creative outlet, the duo quickly grabbed the attention of big names in the music business, allowing for their first album to be made within the first year they met. After just four shows, they played a major festival, and since then, they’ve added more festivals under their belt and sold out shows around the country.

I had the chance to talk to Harrison from the group. Read on to find out more about this unique DJ duo.

Sam: What kind of music did you listen to when you were growing up?

Harrison: Lots of stuff. When I was growing up, I wasn’t super into music that much. I liked it, but I wasn’t obsessive like I am now. I listened to a lot of stuff my parents listened to, like movie soundtracks, a lot of soul and funk, disco, stuff like Frank Sinatra, stuff like that. As I grew up, I got more into hip-hop, indie music and classic rock. I like tribal music and lots of stuff. I’m pretty diverse.

I know that both of played instruments when you were in middle school. (Harrison played the trumpet and Clayton played the piano.) You also said that you don’t really remember much of the trumpet today. Do you still know how to play it?

I think I still do. I haven’t picked up one in a couple of years, but I still remember the basics. The biggest issue when you start trumpet is knowing the placement for your lips and how to shoot air through your lips correctly, or else you can’t make the horn sound. I still remember how to do that, and I think I would just have to relearn how to read music.

I didn’t know that about the trumpet. Would you say that this early incorporation with instruments has influenced the type of music that you make today?

Honestly, I feel like when I was playing trumpet, I was strictly by the book. I wasn’t really creative with it whatsoever. I kind of did what I was told to play. I played really boring things; I remember one of our learning things was the snake charmer song. (laughs) I don’t think I learned anything that influenced me in any way. I do remember just enjoying practicing, which I don’t think a lot of kids do.

Does Clayton still play the piano? Do you guys play any other instruments?

Ya, Clayton still plays the piano. I play piano too, but I’m not nearly as classically trained. Clay plays guitar every once in a while, but he is usually pretty piano based. I mainly play piano now too.

Your biography says that ODESZA started as a recording project. Can you explain what that means?

Ya – Recording project? Where was that written? I think they meant production project because that’s how we thought of it. It was us experimenting with different sounds. When we met up, we really didn’t know each other. We literally just clicked with music really well, and we just started jamming together. It was us meeting each other and learning about each other as we’re experimenting with different sounds we like. It was us hanging out and trying different things, things we always thought were interesting, and try to make them work, show each other stuff, maybe get inspired off that and work more together. We did our whole first album like that.

So, it was more of you guys producing music than promoting it to become famous musicians?

Ya, (laughs) in no way whatsoever. It was totally an experiment. I would say it was a huge learning thing for me because both of us did everything differently, but we had the same equipment, so we both learned a lot about how to do things differently, different peoples processes, different techniques and stuff.

I read that Clayton heard Animal Collective when he first started college and fell in love with it, but how did you get into electronic music?

It extends from when I heard the Gorillaz. And then from the Gorillaz, I heard the rapper Del (from Deltron 3030). From that, I listened to a bunch of old school music, and I got into beat production for hip-hop stuff and I really liked sampling. From sampling, I slowly got into different producers. After a while, I started getting eased into the electronic sound and totally fell in love with a bunch of different stuff and electronic music.

What do you think about sampling in electronic music? It’s always been a heated debate in music.

I could really write a term paper on this, but in my opinion, there’s a right way to do it and a wrong way to do it. I think the right way is to not have it so obvious as to what the other song was. If you change it up and make it your own, I think that’s your own piece of music. I think if someone else sampled what we did and made it completely different, I would be like, “Awesome! That’s your song now.” I think once you make something that leaves your hands, it’s not yours anymore. There’s only personal gain, and that’s the biggest thing with art in general: No one can really say what art is. Then it gets all stupid and pretentious and deep. There’s a right way to do it in my eyes. Some people will take a song and put different drums under it and say that they made another song. I don’t think that’s always the case. I think you have to do something creative with it, but when it is creative, it’s stupid.

Photo courtesy of Marybeth Coghill

How would you describe you music to someone who has never heard it before or never heard electronic music in general?

For electronic music in general, I don’t know what I would tell them. That would be hard for me since there is so much genre blending nowadays. For us, I would say influences of hip-hop, ambient, electronic music in general and tribal music is a big one. And pop. I would say those things.

Do you enjoy the producing or performing side more?

That’s a good question. I think that when we’re on the road for more than two months at a time, it is hard to enjoy it (performing) as much because you’re pretty drained, but I think I do enjoy the production because it’s a very comfortable zone. I really love going out and playing music to people. When you’re playing something that you haven’t played before and you get a reaction like that, you don’t see that when a single comes out on Soundcloud. You get a lot of likes and people say, “Cool.” It’s a lot more fun to see an immediate (reaction) like that at a show.

Can you explain your production process in the studio? Does one of you have certain responsibilities or do you split the work evenly?

It started very evenly, but as we’ve gotten more and more work, I think we’ve found more of our strengths. In general, what we usually try to do is we meet up and show each other little pieces that we started, like really simple things, and we say, “Do you want to take this somewhere? Does this inspire you to do something?” We jam on it together for a while, and then we kind of pick a direction for the song. Then, we both spend a day away from each other and just work on it. We meet up again to try to combine everything we like about what we just made. We think with each other, and then without each other, and then we try to combine.

You previously said that you like that “punch-in-your-face, hard-hitting sound.” How do you balance that with the smooth, chillwave, ambient style that you’re known for?

I think that you can do both, but it’s a different version of it. It’s not a punch-you-in-the-face energy; it’s a punch-you-in-the-face emotion. It’s something that we both like: something building and it just hits you whether in an emotional way or an energy way.

You guys just got your remix of Pretty Lights’ “Lost and Found” on the “Divergent” movie soundtrack, how was that?

That was absolutely insane. We didn’t even know about it until last minute. Our manager called us and said, “Hey. Just wanted to let you know: One of your songs is going to be on the ‘Divergent’ soundtrack.” We were like, “What the hell?” We were pretty much blown away. It was an awesome opportunity to be on a list of so many talented people on that soundtrack. It was something we were definitely honored by.

That soundtrack has been getting rave reviews. Growing up listening to movie soundtracks, was that a dream of yours?

Ya. Movie soundtracks, to me, are absolutely a huge, fundamental part of the film, and I’m a big film fan too. To be apart of something like that, I have no words. It’s amazing to me. It’s definitely a dream of mine, like a bucket list thing, so it was really cool to be apart of it. And I think that we’re the only non-famous people on there! (laughs) I don’t know how we got on there. We weaseled our way in.

That is a great achievement. What has been the highlight of your musical career thus far?

I would say, for me, my highlight has been that I got to meet some of my heroes and people that I’ve been really influenced by, people I thought I would never even have a casual conversation with. It’s really cool to become friends with the people that influenced you.

What’s next for ODESZA?

We have a bunch of stuff coming. We’re working on a bunch of remixes for some people that we really like that we’re not allowed to tell you who unfortunately. We have a new album that we’re working on that we’re trying to release this year. We’re doing a bunch of our tours and possibly some new beats with some popular groups that we can’t say. A lot more music and a lot more touring, and that’s about it.

Very nice. Thanks for taking the time to sit down with us. We really appreciate it.

No problem. This has been the best interview I’ve done in months.

Follow ODESZA on FacebookTwitter and Soundcloud and download their entire debut album for free here!

Also, if you’re in Florida, check them out in one of these upcoming shows!
2014-5 ODESZA tour



Grand Central’s Extensive 2014 Miami Music Week Lineup


Keeping track of all the WMC and MMW parties can be intimidating and crazy (Check out our 2014 Miami Music Week guide). The list of things to do during this exclusive week of music seems never ending. Deciding which events you should go to is even more daunting. But one venue in Miami has a little something for everyone.

From March 22 through March 29, Grand Central and The Garret will showcase a number of shows with the hottest acts in electronic music today. With some of the best lineups of the week, it is hard to say that you won’t end up at Grand Central at least once during Miami Music Week.

The Grand Central family starts off WMC with a bang! Slap and Tickle’s weekly party, Bodega, will feature the up-and-coming Kaytranada, a youngster that has been DJing since the age of 14. His remixes are one of a kind, and he has developed his own distinct sound that makes you want to move your feet. Disclosure recently mentioned him in a Facebook status saying, “When will he make a bad tune??… Like it has to be soon surely??? Probably not!!” I would have to agree with the Disclosure bros; Kaytranada has yet to produce something just mediocre. Support will be provided by S&T resident DJs Pirate StereoSantiago Caballero and Panic Bomber. Tickets are currently $15 and can be found HERE.

If Kaytranada isn’t your cup of tea, Seven Lions will be performing downstairs at Grand Central on the same night. The progressive dubstep artist has blown up in the last couple of years and doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. This is evident in the tremendous amount of collaborations he has been involved in, whether it be supporting Porter Robinson on tour or remixing legendary Röyksopp. Doors open at 11 p.m. Tickets are currently $22 and can be found HERE.

Trap is nothing new when it comes to music. Many younger listeners don’t realize that its origins began with hip-hop and rap. Mannie Fresh is known for bringing Cash Money Records into the limelight, and he’s bringing his original style of trap to Miami with hip-hop artist Juvenile. Support will be provided by Heroes X VillainsBrenmar,Speakerfoxx and Miami Marci. Early bird tickets have sold out, but tickets are $20 for 21-year-olds or $25 for those under 21. They can be found HERE.

With one of the best lineups of this years Miami Music Week, Bromance Records is back with an arsenal of musicians from the label, most of them coming from France with the exception of a couple of Americans. When it comes to electronic music, the French know what’s up, and Brodinski and his crew are no exception. Even though this event will be held on a Monday, it is one that you don’t want to miss. The headliners (Brodinski, Ed Banger founder Busy P and super group Club Cheval) are enough to make you already want to go, but the supporting acts are the icing on the cake. Support will include Gesaffelstein vs. The HackerJimmy EdgarLouisahhh!!!Para OnePipesSurkin, The Kore, Zimmer and special guests. Early bird tickets have sold out. Tickets are currently $25 and can be found HERE.

Circus Records, led by Doctor P and Flux Pavilion, will bring their Grand Central Tour to, well, Grand Central. Celebrating the launch of the Circus Records compilation, Grand Central, the duo will bring a night of dub guaranteed to keep the dance floor moving all night long. Support will be provided by Lets Be FriendsMizukiFox StevensonNezzoThugli and Mutrix. Tickets are currently $25 and can be found HERE.

Just when we thought Grand Central was holding out on us this MMW season, they drop this bomb. Good Times Miami is a festival with only back-to-back sets, pairing up some artists that you never thought you’d see spin together. And mind you, the match ups are pretty on point. The lineup is too extensive to even begin to go into details, but along with OWSLA, seven other record labels (MTA RecordsJeffree’sBNRFool’s GoldSlow Roast RecordsSMOG and Bromance) will be there to let the good times roll. This is a 21+ event, and it will be held in Wynwood on NW 24th St. in between 1st and 2nd Ave. Tickets are currently $30 for a one-day ticket or $55 for a two-day ticket and can be found HERE.


If there is any one event that you shouldn’t miss, Hard Miami is it. One of the only times of the year that Miami is graced with a Hard event, Gary Richards, the father of Hard, continuously brings fresh and new talent to the south with this event. The first night, dubbed the Rump Shaker, is already sold out, but that doesn’t mean the second night’s lineup isn’t just as great. Basement Jaxx (DJ set) and Brodinski will be headlining the second night with support from Julio BashmoreDuskyDestructo,BreachMKAmine Edge & DanceClaptoneT. WilliamsAmtrac and Wax Motif. Tickets are currently $35 and can be found HERE.

The Fool’s Gold party has become a Miami Music Week staple. The free cover with a simple RSVP has made this party one of the most popular MMW events. Arrive early; The line will surely go down the street and around the block as it does every year. This year the Fool’s Gold founders, A-Trak and Nick Catchdubs, have brought a massive lineup including TchamiGladiator b2b LoudpvckAnna LunoeDestructoTrippy TurtleWave RacerCarliHigh Klassified and Sleepy Tom. If this event reaches capacity, the weekly party Peachfuzz will be going on upstairs with DZA and friends. RSVP for free entrance to Fool’s Gold Miami HERE.

Everyone needs a pool party during WMC week, and this one seems like the one to go to to chillax by the water with some bumping beats. Brought to you by Super Music GroupThump and Poplife, Tiki Disco versus The Deep End will have AmtracAnna Lunoe and Treasure Fingers as headliners, and support will be provided by Tiki Disco resident DJs Eli EscobarLloydski and Andy Pry. It will take place on South Beach at the Mondrian Hotel (1100 West Avenue, South Beach, FL, 33139). Don’t miss your chance to splash around before going out on Saturday night. And to make things even better, this pool party is free. You know where we’ll be next Saturday afternoon.

The Windish Agency has been known to showcase innovative and new talent. Started in 2004, the booking agency is involved with almost every sector of music. For their annual party this year, they will take over both Grand Central and The Garret to accommodate the huge lineup they have put together for the biggest night of WMC.Alex YoungAntiserumCashmere CatKill ParisKaytranadaLuminoxNadastrom,Twrk and Uberjak’d will take over the main room, while BranchezBixel Boys,CursesJuan MacLeanKlangkarussellMaxxi SoundsystemMK and Waze & Odyssey hold down The Garret for S&T’s Bodega. Tickets are currently $20 and can be found HERE.

Who knows what else Poplife and Grand Central have in store for the week ahead? Be sure to check back for updates and changes to any Grand Central or Poplife parties during this year’s Miami Music Week. Hope to see all your beautiful faces smiling and dancing at all of these events!

via Bionic Beatlab

CounterPoint 2014: Back and better than ever


When the creators of Tomorrowland announced that TomorrowWorld, the American edition of their festival, would be held in the Chattahoochee Hills, many wondered what would happen to the other festival that was previously held at the same location. After a wildly successful first year in 2012, CounterPoint Music Festival is back with a new venue and a massive lineup. From indie, chillwave and electronica to electro, hip-hop and trap, CounterPoint has covered every genre a modern-day music lover could want. There is, literally, something for everyone.

CounterPoint moved to its new home in Kingston Downs, Ga., and will be held on April 25-27. Advanced general admission tickets are currently $180 (plus fees) and on sale at the CounterPoint website. VIP packages start at $600. Outkast, Pretty Lights, Foster The People and STS9 will be headlining the festival, but the fun doesn’t stop there.

As you read the 2014 CounterPoint lineup, it seems to get better as you go along. They have the perfect balance of different styles of music. Mainstream, underground: You name it, they’ve got it.

Outkast, J. Cole, Chance The Rapper and more if you’re a rap fan. A-Trak, Boys Noize, Wolfgang Gartner plus many more if you’re an electro fan. Foster The People, Thievery Corporation, Sleigh Bells and others if you like indie. Nosaj Thing, XXYYXX and Shpongle for the experimental ones.

And there are more, of course. The lineup consists of musicians that many know and love, and then, there are musicians that many have never heard of. MCP Presents and C3 Presents, the companies in charge of the festival, always have a good ear for fresh and new artists. This is evident in the multiple festivals they produce yearly, and CounterPoint is no exception.

MCP and C3 have revived the Dirty South as a prominent player in the music industry. They continuously are bringing groundbreaking music to an area that is relatively underestimated and unknown. The south needed a diverse and unique music festival and they hit the nail on the head with this one.

CounterPoint will be held at Kingston Downs for the next 10 years, but that doesn’t mean you should wait to buy tickets. Early bird tickets have already sold out and the advanced tickets are headed in the same direction.

For a taste of what the first CounterPoint was like, read our review.

via Bionic Beatlab

Sold out Disclosure performances a sign of Miami refining its taste in electronic music


Disclosure sold out The Fillmore on Saturday night, but the music was hardly close to over after their live show at the iconic venue came to an end. To keep the party going through the night, Grand Central held the official Disclosure after party with special guest Samo Sound Boy, which sold out as well. The night was an intimate and sultry adventure that packed Grand Central to the brims and gave a listen into Disclosure’s musical discourse.

Photo by Jake Pierce

There was already a good amount of people at the venue when I arrived. Different groups scattered the floor; some were at the bar, some were on the dance floor and some lingered on the couches and in the shadows of the dark corners. Santiago Caballero was able to get the crowd going with some disco, deep house and even some electro house.

One of Grand Central’s greatest features is the back patio. Not many clubs have an outdoor area, and Grand Central perfects this space with the booths, bar, pool table and ample standing room. Other groups gathered outside for the more intimate space, but it wasn’t long before they quickly ushered in as soon as the faint sounds of Disclosure seeped to the patio.

Fresh off their newest release, a rework of “F for You” featuring Mary J. Blige, and the release of the music video for “Grab Her,” the anticipation and expectations for this performance were so high that it would’ve become overrated if the duo wasn’t so talented.

They played most of their debut album Settle throughout the night, and every time they dropped a popular song, the crowd went crazy. They also played a remix of “Renegade Master” that enjoyably, but strangely transitioned into a remixed version of “Latch.” Todd Terje‘s “Inspector Norse” was a nice surprise. What was interesting about Disclosure’s hour-and-a-half set was the select unidentifiable tracks. I found myself wondering what was coming through the speakers multiple times and not even Shazam could tell me what it was.

Looking around, the audience was young and full of energy. I was surprised by how many people were two-stepping. The dance floor stayed packed for the entirety of the set, and it was refreshing to see a Miami crowd so heavily invested into the music, even if they didn’t appreciate the lesser-known songs that were played.

While I believe that the two brothers are musical geniuses, I also think that their specialties thrive in their live shows where they are able to display their talents to the fullest. This is not to say their DJ sets are not good, but that they are not as emotional and intricate as the live version. I’ve been impressed every time I’ve seen Disclosure. They are talented regardless if they are playing live or not. I believe that if they put as much work into their DJ set as they did for their live show, they would be even more appreciated than they are today.

via Bionic Beatlab

Disclosure Brings DJ Set to Grand Central for Official After Party


As the biggest breakthrough artist of 2013, Disclosure took the music world by storm with their debut album Settle and their subsequent explosion in popularity. Two young brothers from England have single-handedly influenced and changed the direction of modern electronic music, appealing to both a younger and older crowd.

After selling out The Fillmore on Miami Beach with their live winter tour, a surprise after party has been announced at Grand Central where they will perform a DJ set on Jan. 25. I’ve heard many good things about their live show, but their DJ set is just as impressive.

Poplife is partnering with Slap & Tickle to bring S&T’s weekly night, Bodega, from The Garret to the main room at Grand Central. Support will be provided by local talent Pirate StereoPanic Bomber and Santiago Caballero, with special guest Samo Sound Boy. Tickets are currently $25 and available here. This is an 18+ event and doors will open at 11:30 p.m.

via Bionic Beatlab

Get #ShipFaced AFTER Holy Ship


Just when you thought that Holy Ship!!! couldn’t get any more rowdy, some local promoters decided to throw a #ShipFaced #ShipFam after party in downtown Miami. After shippers return from a unique four-day musical excursion in the Bahamas, they, along with everyone in Miami, will have the opportunity to see L-Vis 1990Gina Turner,French Fries and more at Vagabond on Monday, the 13th.

The BBQ is an all-day event, starting at 2 p.m. and ending at 5 a.m. It also doubles as the launch party for Secret Sauce Collective, an underground music and arts group in Miami. A general admission ticket for $28.50 gets you into the party all day and night with a free CD. But for just $35 more, you can get a VIP ticket that includes free food, massages, goodie bags and more.

L-Vis 1990, aka James Connolly, is one of the co-founders of the label Night Slugs. Formed with longtime friend Bok Bok, Connolly is not new to the music scene. He was putting together events in the UK when he was just a teenager. Since then, he has gone on to develop his own sound and style that sets him apart from others. He has a forthcoming EP, Dance System, due to be released through Clone Records.

Gina Turner is one bad bitch. Not only is she Laidback Luke‘s wife, but she has a side project with him (Nouveau Yorican) and is in charge of Turn It Records as well. Turner got her start in music with radio and studied audio production and radio broadcasting at Emerson. Even though she has become more popular recently, she has stuck to her roots and still has her own radio shows. Not to mention, she’s playing b2b with her hubby on Holy Ship and at this after party, all while being extremely pregnant.

French Fries is one of those artists that seems to fly under the radar because of his low-key persona. However, this native South American, who now lives in southern Paris, has been in the industry since he was 14-years-old. He’s been doing this for almost half of his lifetime, and he’s only 22! No wonder he has co-founded his own record label,ClekClekBoom Recordings, and his original tracks have been remixed by the some of the best.

On top of the three exceptional headliners, Secret Sauce is stuffing the line up with local Miami DJs, like Dude SkywalkerCHALK. and t.k.Lo. Hosted by a pair of veteran shippers, this show is going to bring out the true party people. Who needs work on the Monday after Holy Ship? Let’s keep the party going for as long as we can!


via Bionic Beatlab