It’s been quite some time since we’ve heard an all new, serotonin splashing song from Glasgow/LuckyMe/Warp/Numbers pusher Rustie. Since the release of 2011′s Glass Swords, the man born Russell Whyte has released a set of remixes as well as some highly acclaimed, vocalist-assisted retakes of album cuts, but nothing as remotely groundbreaking as his debut LP. And then there was “Slasherr”. Centered around some absurdist trance synth work and even more absurdist (dog yelping?) vocal samples, Rustie splits the difference between Armin Van Buren and DJ Toomp with a little bit of everything else tossed in for good measure. Stream ”Slasherr” below (and cop it here) and look out for the full single release on March 18.
After further investigation, the live FlyLo video I posted earlier is not the only set from Sónar São Paulo. In all my excitement, I overlooked sets from Rustie, Four Tet, James Pants, Cut Chemist, Skream, Chromeo and the ultimate supervillain… DOOM. Now, I haven’t gotten around to the DOOM video because I’m still bitter he sent an impostor to a show in Seattle a few years ago, but I’ll get over my hurt feelings eventually and press the play button. I highly recommend the Rustie video, but please just listen to the audio. The camera work is painfully abrasive. What I gathered from these videos? No one has more fun on stage than FlyLo. The dude just has an aura of unstoppable charisma surrounding him. He can’t be beat. Find all of the videos at the Sónar Youtube page and our favorites after the jump. If we’re lucky, we’ll get similar videos of James Blake, Hudson Mohawke, Justice and Modeselektor from Sónar.
Last night, a short, pale man wandered into a radio station in London and proceeded to lay down one of the best mixes of the year. His name happens to be Rustie and the radio station happens to be BBC Radio One. The radio show, Pete Tong’s Essential Mix, happens to be one of the most influential mix series’ in the world. The track selection? Nothing too special. A little unreleased Obey City. A little unreleased Jackson and his Computer Band. A little unreleased Hudson Mohawke. A lot of unreleased Rustie, including a VIP of “City Star” and the demo version of “All Nite.” Maybe that TNGHT joint that Rustie previewed at the Boiler Room a couple months back. Like I said, nothing too special. Download the mix here and keep holding your breath until that TNGHT shit drops. Full track list after the jump.
There is something about Rustie’s music that is so easily digestible. Amid all of the clatter of Glass Swords was a warm pop-sensibility and a downright addictive quality. “Surph” or “All Nite” will never show up on Top 40 radio of course, but they have turned into the pop music of the bass music world. To do that without compromising any of his artistic value is quite a feat. “Lose Yourself” is another poppy jam, taking Surkin’s electro-house original and turning it into a hip hop banger. The vocals are a little irritating and I wish he did a little more with them, but with those hi-hats who can really complain. The remix is off of Surkin’s USA remix album that will also feature L-Vis 1990 and Bok Bok.
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You know him as part of the Lucky Me collective, a member of the Warp roster and owner of one of last year’s best all around albums. Yes folks, it’s Rustie, and he’s back with another release after re-working album favorite “Surph” several weeks ago. This time, he’s taken on Ed Banger rep Sebastian’s single “Love In Motion” featuring Stones Throw crooner Mayer Hawthorne. Rustie takes the originals prog-rock sensibility and flips it on its head, transforming it into a maximalist banger. The buildup is almost strenuous as it draws out, but like all Rusite productions, comes out clean and focused. Hawthorne’s vocals are used as another instrument, as opposed to being prominently focused like on the original, allowing Rustie to put his signature on the track. The remix is part of the “Love In Motion” single package that was recently released on Ed Banger. Stream the remix below and cop the single from your closest reputable online marketplace.
Maximalism became all the rage in 2011. Watch The Throne ruefully took hip hop to exciting new highs and devastating lows. A$AP Rocky succesfully amalgamated previous disparate regional styles. Odd Future was so in your face and all over the map stylistically that no one really knew how to respond, resulting in a devolution into meaningless think pieces, highlighted by psychoanalytic bullshit. In mainstream electronic music, dubstep and progressive house reigned supreme stateside. Skrillex-style dubstep became prevalent as the low-end sounds that originated in London almost a decade ago began to depreciate. Gushing piano crescendo’s and over-the-top vocal performances dominated the house world, as the Swedish House Mafias, Aviciis and Calvin Harrises of the world became the new pop stars.
All of this brings us to two diminutive Glasgow-based producers who reside on the legendary Warp Records roster. Hudson Mohawke and Rustie of the LuckyMe collective encapsulated the overarching maximalist sentiment of our time and translated into two sensory overload releases. Mohawke’s Satin Panthers EP set the bar high early in the year while Rustie’s Glass Swords took home the grand prize, ending up on many, if not most, “Best Of” lists. Both producers have been on the map for several years, noted in their spots on the Warp roster, but both have also been fairly inconsistent and un-focused at this point in their careers. Satin Panthers and Glass Swords ended any complaints about the two.
This all brings us to today’s announcement regarding the first single release from Glass Swords. Album standout, “Surph,” has been given the single treatment and will be released on Warp on April 9. Furthermore, the track has been given the re-work treatment with new vocals from Slovenian singer Nightwave. While the track already featured Nightwave’s heavily distorted vocals, they have been re-recorded and are far more prominently featured than on the album-version. Whether you like the album version, or the single version more, it is undeniable that the track has an inherent pop value that is not as easy to recognize within the context of Glass Swords. Give the re-worked “Surph” a listen above and check out the album version here for comparison.
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In 2011, “swag” was defined by a number of artists, crews and labels, from A$AP Rocky to Kreayshawn, but no one artist embodied the undeniable cool and youthful exuberance the term entails more than 23 year-old Montreal beatsmith Lunice Fermin Pierre II. Like so many other artists that have built large internet fan bases, Lunice first gained notoriety through a video highlighting not his music, but his pop-lockin’ ability. While Lunice has been making beats since 2006, it was not until recently that his glitchy, turn’t-up production style really began to develop. Citing influences ranging from the French tastemakers at Ed Banger to Detroit legend J Dilla, Lunice’s two most recent releases, the Stacker Uppa and One Hunned EP’s, both released by the legendary LuckyMe collective, have pushed the young Montréalaise into the upper-echelon of up-and-coming producers.
Lunice’s roots are in Southern hip hop, and more recently “based” hip hop, but his latest releases take more from British maximalists Hudson Mohawke and Rustie, both members of LuckyMe. Glasgow and Atlanta are thousands of miles apart, in both distance and culturally, but Lunice has effortlessly melded the two, as can be seen in his LAZERmix series. Whereas Stacker Uppa strives for grandiose maximalism, One Hunned and several recent remixes with Diplo (released on Mad Decent) highlight a more introspective side of his music. Alongside Diplo, Lunice has remixed Julianna Barwick and Deerhunter into glitchy, indie-rock soundscapes that are deeply dissimilar to both producers’ discographies. Self-described as shy, Lunice is anything but when he takes the stage with his handy MPD32. Bringing unmatched panache and enthusiasm, a Lunice show is equal parts trap hip hop, what New Yorker writer Sasha Frere-Jones calls “lazer bass,” and dance performance. I was lucky enough to see Lunice at the Los Angeles Mad Decent Block Party and he easily beat out the more established Major Lazer, Dillon Francis and Nadastrom for best set of the day. Whether he’s teaching the crowd how to cook, or dropping the latest LuckyMe sounds, Lunice always appears to be having fun, and is one of the few artists out there that genuinely likes to perform day in and day out.
In November at the esteemed Boiler Room, Rustie ended his set with a track credited to Lunice and HudMo that set the interwebz on fire. The track has yet to attain a release date, but if it is any indication of how 2012 will go, Lunice is in for a wildly successful year. If he maintains his indelible cool, and flair, Lunice will continue to tear down barriers and reach new levels of stardom in the earth’s final year.