Month: October 2015

Mura Masa: Master Craftsman of Modern Music

When the world breathed life into Alex Crossan, Apollo looked down from his heavenly throne, and recognized something peculiar about him. He noticed they shared a gift; an intrinsically beautiful talent that danced around the soul of this newborn child. It was the gift of music. However, this gift would not be fully realized until Crossan was mature enough to untie the tightly knotted ribbons. So, Apollo remained patient, strummed his lyre, and waited for his talents to blossom. That time has now passed, and since then Crossan’s potential has flourished into a musical garden, bursting to life with mellifluous melodies. At the youthful age of 19, he has already released one album, and an EP under the moniker ‘Mura Masa’: Soundtrack to a Death (2014), and Someday Somewhere (2015), both of which embody the craftsmanship, and maturity of someone you would expect to be much older. His overarching sound carries a humble Eastern influence, which is brought to life with elements of the Trap and Hip-Hop genres. It’s sharp, cutting with the double-edged sword of raw instrumentation and electronic finesse. It’s fluid; the artistry of his production shapes to the container of any genre he experiments with. Apollo now looks down on Crossan with envious tears in his eyes, wishing he could create to his likeness—to the extent that he can. Maybe someday, Apollo. Someday, somewhere. Namaste むら まさ

Like this artist? Follow them: Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud | ※ Music Videos

Galimatias & Alina Baraz: A Celestial Duo

Writing two separate posts about these artists would be like forcefully divorcing a husband from his wife. It would be the equivalent of putting jelly on one slice of bread, peanut butter on another, and eating them individually. Some things are simply meant to be together. Although Alina Baraz and Galimatias have worked on projects of their own, they have recently joined forces to materialize an eight track masterpiece: an ethereal EP known as Urban Flora. With Galimatias’ distinctive, delicate production style traveling alongside Alina’s airy, velvety vocals, it is—as cliché as this may sound—a match made in heaven. There is an astral element present—a kind of indescribable infiniteness among this octet of songs, which moves through them like an effortless dance. As a whole, Urban Flora is the personification of Egyptian cotton bed sheets. Soft to the ears, it warms the soul. It is a sound that can wrap any atmosphere in its ambiance, and leave the listener lost in its layers. Independently, they are substantial artistic forces (see Galiamtias’ Ocean Floor Kisses & Alina’s Roses Dipped in Gold), but together, they are transcendental. It’s better than PB&J; it’s AB&G. Yum.

Follow Galimatias: Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud

Follow Alina Baraz: Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud | ※ Melancholy

TAJAN: An Artist Gone, but Back Again

Before diving head-first into his production style, it should be mentioned that this Utah-based artist is quite the intriguing character. Over a two year period (beginning in early 2013), he uploaded a total of six songs on SoundCloud, and they all gained some reasonable traction, averaging ~500k listens a piece. Then, without warning, Tajan went incognito—disappearing from the music scene altogether, and even abandoning his social media accounts in a year long hiatus. It wasn’t until just a few weeks ago (Sept. 12, 2015) that Tajan posted a long awaited update: “It’s been a minute…lots of upcoming music to be release very soon.” And at that, all of his fans breathed a collective sigh of relief. For those unfamiliar with Tajan’s music, he operates almost exclusively in the realm of chillwave. With the utilization of reverberating percussion, wavy synth leads, and smooth vocal samples, he has certainly mastered the genre. Chillwave, along with the other sub-categories of electronic music, often sound synthetic in nature, but Tajan seems to be challenging this notion. His instrumentation flows so fluidly that it evokes a sense of naturalism. It’s organic. It feels like resting on a bed of grass under a blanket of stars, with the wind gently kissing your cheeks. We like that.

Like this artist? Follow them: Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud | ※ Luxury Camp

Owl Eyes: Elegantly Dark, Gracefully Nocturnal

Brooke Addamo, better known by her moniker Owl Eyes, is a diamond underneath a display case of costume jewelry. Over the last few decades, multitudes of female artists have risen to fame through the wide spectrum of modern pop music, but the genre has quickly become saturated with singers who suffer from the same debilitating disease: lack of originality. However, through a homogeneous injection of pure, innovative artistry, and refreshing musical inventiveness, Miss Addamo seems to have found a cure for this common cold. Owl Eyes initially came to fruition through a triad of consecutive EPs. In 2013, she released her first full-length album, Nightswim, which captured a darker ambiance to Addamo’s multi-faceted talents. Although the general vibe of her music has matured since her debut, most of her songs are written from a nostalgic, 80’s synth-pop perspective, while focusing heavily on fluid production value. What sets Owl Eyes apart from other singers is the unique utilization of her voice. Rather than layering lyrics over a track, Addamo knits herself into the songs themselves, allowing her voice to amalgamate beautifully with the other instruments. The sound is superb from the ground up, and all one can ask for is more of the same.

Like this artist? Follow them: Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud | ※ HOREAZON

UNO Stereo: Musical Progression, Defined

Unique and high-caliber—these dueling characteristic are certainly a rarity among newer artists. With the recent influx of wannabe DAW users, it’s becoming difficult to find underground producers who avoid recycling overused drum beats, dried out baselines, and basic chord progressions. That being said, there is one artist by the name of UNO Stereo who seems to be breaking this stagnate cycle with his musically creative perspective. Nic Martin, the brilliant Sydney-based producer behind this one man act, is a visionary who understands the concept of ‘quality over quantity,’ especially in relation to the arts. Besides Martin’s co-production work (most notably with artists Jay Sean, and Illy), he has released only a small handful of songs. Though, if you listen intently, you will find that his personal production style is treated as a craft—no different than painting or writing. Every instrument has intention, every background nuance a purpose, and he weaves them together for an audibly alluring result. A lack of discography should never be a reason to disregard musicians such as Nic Martin. It is smaller artists like this who embody musical progression—who define their respective genres, and give birth to the next. That is something to be not only noticed, but revered.

Like this artist? Follow them: Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud | ※ Majestic Casual ※