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What to Listen to: Daft Punk and Beyond

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The legendary electronic duo Daft Punk released their latest album, Random Access Memories, last week with great fanfare. Regardless of what music has come out so far this year and what’s still to come, this album is destined to be in my top three at the end of December (if I were of the list-making sort). Not only did Daft Punk tease the album for what felt like forever, its soul and funk-heavy tracks show a mature progression. Because everyone under the sun—and a number of rocks—have reviewed it I’m using this space to recommend a few lesser known electronic musicians who will be an excellent addition to any Daft Punk fan’s collection.

Commix / Call to Mind
Call to MindIn 2003, London-based duo George Levings and Guy Brewer signed to Metalheadz, the renowned drum and bass label founded in 1994 by DJ duo Kemistry & Storm and producer Goldie.

Call to Mind is Commix’s 2007 album and the first track, “Be True,” is exactly what you’d expect from a Metalheadz act—complex beats with artcore atmospherics and airy vocals that add to the tune but never distract.

But Commix is a versatile act. “Change,” featuring Nextman, is the hardest track on the album—the metallic breaks and hip hop scratches give it a darkstep feel. “Satellite Type 2” is solid jump up; “Belleview” is a playful, techstep track that brings early Nintendo games to mind; and “Spectacle” is straight up jazzy.

Overall, the album is downtempo and airy. If you miss the heyday of drum and bass, Call to Mind will scratch that itch for you.

Modeselektor / Monkeytown
MonkeytownHailing from Berlin, duo Gernot Bronsert and Sebastian Szary, known together as Modeselektor, met in 1992 during their travels through the city’s underground party scene. It was right after the Wall came down and chaos reigned, which, if one were prone to speculation, could explain how the two came to establish their sound. Eschewing easy categorization, their third album (and their first on their own label), Monkeytown, is hard to peg—other than giving it the sweeping term “techno.”

On the 2011 release they work with artists as varied as Radiohead’s Thom Yorke and American hip hop group Antipop Consortium. The fourth track, “Evil Twin,” a tweaky, hard driving tune features breakcore artist Otto von Schirach while the more soulful, head nodding song “Berlin” has vocals from Romanian-German singer, songwriter Miss Platnum.

The credible electronic music website Resident Advisor captured Modeselektor’s essence when they said, “Like a jungle, their music is dense, textured and rich with sounds never experienced before.” Fans of the Beastie Boys’ antics will hear a familiar tone in the music of Modeselektor.

Pantha Du Prince / Diamond Daze
Diamond DazeHendrik Weber, a.k.a. Pantha du Prince, also hailing from Germany, is the mellower of the three mentioned here. Diamond Daze is Weber’s first album but in no way inferior to his later work. Like his other LPs, ethereal sounds and mellow beats fill the space; echoing bell tones and muted shakers feature prominently.

Diamond Daze, and Pantha du Prince in general, is the perfect music for dinner parties and lazy days on the couch with a book in hand.

::[Links]::
Find Commix at Metalheadz
Visit Modeselektor’s website
Visit Pantha du Prince’s website

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Written by Gabrielle

May 28, 2013 at 6:53 am

5 Responses

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  1. Reblogged this on Rosemarie Cawkwell.

    R Cawkwell

    May 28, 2013 at 3:02 pm

  2. Reblogged this on el blog de la Andrea.

    El Blog de la Andrea

    May 28, 2013 at 11:20 pm

  3. Good selections; I’m especially fond of Commix and of most of the other Metalheads acts. Pantha Du Prince’s entire catalog is great, and his This Bliss is one of my favorite minimal albums ever.

    I didn’t like Random Access Memories as much as you did, but then again, I liked Human After All a lot more than anyone I knew, so maybe I’m an outlier.

    thescreengrabber

    May 30, 2013 at 12:24 am

    • a friend of mine told me last night he didnt like the new Daft Punk, said it was too “pop.” But they’ve always been. they can do no wrong by me … there’s a lot of nostalgia wrapped up in it.

      Gabrielle

      May 30, 2013 at 6:16 am

  4. I really like the new daft punk. Feels familiar, but fresh. Great band!

    odiousghost

    May 30, 2013 at 7:29 am


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