Tag Archives: Shlohmo


Coming off the back of the release of his first album in four years, Los Angeles-based artist and Wedidit boss Henry Laufer aka Shlohmo took over The Fonda stage last week with a retooled live set featuring a hired gun drummer and friend/label mate D33J. It’s Laufer’s first foray into the band world as Shlohmo and, coming at the tail end of a national tour, felt like a veritable homecoming celebration. With a cooky array of imagery splayed behind the stage (chains, rain drops, a spliff), the band giddily took the stage after performances from TEAMSesh rapper BONES, Purple and Nick Melons. Like Dark Red, Laufer’s new album on True Panther Sounds, the performance was rife with clattering, precision-point drums and moody, dirge-like guitar work and true to form, the band worked through most of the new album.

And with a few exceptions, the new material sounded great, drawing from both a technical metal lineage and the Southern hip hop, R&B and jungle influences that have popped up on his past several releases. Also like the album, the middle portion of the show felt a bit sludgy, Dark Red tracks like “Apathy”, “Ditch” and “Remains” didn’t quite hold the attention of Vacation effort “Rained The Whole Time” and Laid Out highlight “Later”. Nonetheless, the crowd was firmly eating out of Laufer’s hands, a young squadron of Wedidit acolytes responding enthusiastically to nearly every track in the hour long set. At his best, Shlohmo sounds like a confluence of Tim Hecker and Goldie, DJ Screw and The Album Leaf and there were enough moments of brilliance throughout the night at The Fonda to ride away from the Sunset Boulevard venue with a huge smile plastered on.

shlohmo-jeremih-no-moreAfter an episode of self-described “major label bullshit” supposedly sidelined Shlohmo and Jeremih‘s highly touted collaborative project, it appears that the former’s Wedidit camp has taken to grassroots methods to disseminate the No More EP. The six track effort features “Bo Peep”, “No More”, an extended, Jeremih-assisted version of Shlohmo’s “Fuck You All The Time” remix that jumpstarted the whole project, and two brand new originals. The original project was slated for a Def Jam/Wedidit release, but while nothing final has been announced all logic points to a formal end to that relationship. While the circumstances surrounding No More are more than a little acerbic, the EP offers an intoxicating blend of Jeremih’s knack for wispy melodic work and songsmanship combined with Shlohmo’s elegiac approach to 808 percussion and ululating textural accompaniments. Chance The Rapper guests on the sharp-witted “The End”, a venomous Chicago collaboration that falls somewhere among the hills of the drill realm. Head to the No More website to grab your copy of the EP in exchange for an email.


We all knew it was coming, but the release still feels momentous. The EP is coming soon. Shlohmo + Jeremih. The new song is called “No More”. NPR predictably referenced David Lynch in their write-up (you can download the song at their site). More than anything else, there’s a sense of collective experience in the sound and identity the producer and singer have fomented. Whereas other R&B acts often come-up deeply, darkly narcissistic, Shlohmo & Jeremih retain a sense of brooding while simultaneously eschewing the petty misogynies of the genre. I could spew on this song for many more paragraphs (and maybe I eventually will), but you know the deal and the music stands on its own.

Earlier this year, Yours Truly got Shlohmo and Jeremih in the studio together as part of their “Songs From Scratch” series. Then “Bo Peep (Do U Right)” came out. Then the two performed on stage together. And then they performed together in the Boiler Room. After Shlohmo laid down a solid 20 minutes of choice Houston cuts, some Andre Nickatina and his signature “Hail Mary” screw at the Wedidit x Boiler Room function a few weeks ago, Jeremih joined yung Henry on stage for a rendition of “Bo Peep” and a medley version of “F U All The Time” the two performed together earlier this calendar year. Jeremih’s performance was choppy at times, but the resonance of the event can still be felt. It’s a testament to institutions like Boiler Room and RBMA that us fans are able to consistently indulge in collaborations like this. Hopefully, Jeremih’s long delayed Thumpy Johnson LP is on the way soon, maybe even featuring some more Shlohmo production.


If you were lucky enough to catch Shlohmo on his recent, (relatively) unpublicized West Coast mini-tour, then you were treated to an hour of mostly unreleased remix work that looks to be some of the Wedidit representative’s best and most elegiac work to date. Remixes of Electric Guest’s “Bate”, Laura Mvula’s “She” and Samo Sound Boy’s “Your Love” have already made there way onto the web and this weekend brought about a similarly entrancing re-contextualization of Haerts’ bubbling cut “Wings”. If you’re still criticizing Shlohmo for using a similar sound palette on the majority of his remixes then you either “don’t get it” or can’t “feel it”. The man born Henry Laufer has managed to turn relative nostalgia (TLC and Aaliyah remixes for the millennial generation), an on-point and comprehensive audial/visual aesthetic and a nearly unmatched hustle into a massive, ever-growing fan base. Yeah we’re unabashed Henry stans in these parts, but why shouldn’t we be? Stream/download below and hit the jump for a taste of the “Your Love” remix.

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naphtaAfter piquing interest with a Sun Raw remix EP last month, Red Bull Music Academy alum and (apparent) R&B mega-fan Naphta is back with another remix package. This time around, the Polish producer has put forth his oddly slurred take on some of the most critically acclaimed R&B cuts from the last year, drawing from Autre Ne Veut, Shlohmo & Jeremih, and Tinashe. Naphta also draws quite a bit of his sound from regional American staples like Jersey Club and Three 6 Mafia-style, hi hat heavy beat work. The package is highly entertaining, if not spectacular, but few remix packages are at that. Stream two choice cuts from the EP below and download the entire thing here courtesy of Freshmore.


A few weeks ago, Shlohmo performed at The Fonda Theater in Los Angeles and amid a night rife with quality exclusives, one song managed to stand out from the rest: a murky remix Young Scooter’s heavily slept on “Colombia”. The remix has been floating around the internet in rip form for a few weeks, but earlier, Mr. Laufer let it loose to celebrate breaking the 70,000 fan barrier on Facebook. Selling bricks has never this fun. Stream and download below.

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When we first heard Shlohmo’s remix of Jeremih’s “Fuck U All The Time” back in October of last year, we were admittedly more than a little giddy to hear one of our favorite producers (and a transcendent talent) take on one of the most dynamic bedroom tracks from one of the best albums (fuck a mixtape) of 2012. When we heard that the two were actually collaborating though, lawdy lawdy did our jaws drop. Coming together as part of Yours Truly’s Songs From Scratch series, Shlohmo and Jeremih got together at Daddy Kev and Nocando’s brand new Cosmic Zoo studio in Los Angeles for a session and produced the immaculate “Bo Peep (Do U Right)”. Beyond the absolutely brilliant melody and shmanging production, the most remarkable aspect of “Bo Peep (Do U Right)” is that neither artist is forced to bend or change their style one bit. The track could have easily fit on Shlohmo’s recent Laid Out EP and even more fittingly on Jeremih’s Late Nights tape. Shlohmo’s dense, dissociative beat work and jarring percussion meshes instantly with Jeremih’s soaring falsetto and longing choruses and the results are as emotive as anything we’ve heard from the R&B realm in the past few years. Anything short of a full length collaboration between these two would be a travesty. Before we get to that though, you can stream and download “Bo Peep (Do U Right)” below and catch the two performing in San Francisco and Los Angeles next weekend (April 5 and 6.


If you haven’t noticed, we’re rather excited about Shlohmo’s upcoming Laid Out EP and are sometimes prone to gushing about Mr. Laufer’s subtle arrangements. The latest tune to emerge from the upcoming extended player comes in the form of “Don’t Say No”, a How To Dress Well assisted slow jam that sees Shlohmo working with a notable vocalist for the first time (?). Like “Later”, the first cut we heard from Laid Out, HTDW’s vocals are often abstracted into a melodic tool, but unlike “Later”, they return to the mix in all their full-throated glory in an attempt to both replicate and break down contemporary R&B conventions. Break out the tissues and don’t say no to this romance drug. Stream below and look out for Laid Out on March 4 (Friends of Friends).

I’m coming at this review firmly entrenched in Henry Laufer’s corner. Not in the dickriding sense, because to be honest I don’t really fuck with some of his stuff, but just in terms of really respecting him as an artist and being willing to entertain the most absurd, abstract ideas of what he may be incorporating into his work and taking everything I pull from the listening experience as somewhat intentional on his part.

Like much of our generation, I get fucked up and sorta like, idk, think about stuff quite a lot. Let’s say I get Laid Out. That’s a pretty fun/fruitful thing to do in this world of constant stimulus and information. It certainly is a unique perspective, one in which I can divorce myself from all the mechanisms I normally use to sort the overload of information pouring into my brain through the Macbook/eyes/ears corridor into meaningful bins. In my weird, drug addled state of being, those bins become a little more convoluted and bits of knowledge that I have accumulated mix together and lead me to some very wacky conclusions about things and how they work.

Much of what enters my being through the computer/sensory superhighway comes in the form of music. I deal with an improbable number of different permutations of frequencies and macro-arrangements of frequency clumps upon which I vaguely cast the “808 drum machine” schema. Ever since becoming obsessed with “Top Back” by T.I., that instrument has meant a lot to me, even though I didn’t know it for years. The same with synths composed generally from saw/square waves, which have constituted the underpinnings of harmony in western pop music for a minute now.

That’s why I fuck with the instrumentation on “Later” by Shlohmo SO TOUGH. I can listen and discern the different 808 hits that I have become so familiar with, the underpinnings of the huge synth bass tones, and I derive pleasure from the “comfort foods” in the soundscape. Yet, there is a carefully wrought gauze over each of his instruments that is never static; it moves, sometimes imperceptibly, but it always pushes each of his sounds forward into what comes next, and it gives everything the sense of novelty that is so prized in contemporary electronic music.

Shlohmo is one of those “pop-conscious” producers, and thus, in a critical analysis of his music, you gotta spend some time thinking about the vocal element. His treatment of vocals has been, dare I say, groundbreaking across his entire Places EP-and-after canon. He doesn’t just put cool effects on well-chopped vocal snippets, he does it in a way that crafts an entire layer of meaning beyond what those voices may be saying. There is a careful attention to inflection that makes utterly digitized voices seem so human and emotive. He takes this to the next level in the lead single from Laid Out, in which a fuzzed out voice relies on his careful effects processing to impart any meaning on the listener. The fact that, without any heterogeneous syllables, I can understand that the voice is saying “I feel it” at the soaring drops is a testament to the skill with which Shlohmo wields his “Ableton Voice”, managing to marry technical skill with the visceral impact of pop. Well done mans.

So as to not leave my earlier run on sentences about drug use hanging, let me get into the arrangement of the elements in this tune. The most salient impression I got from my first listen to “Later” was how much of a jump in song structure and development this represents for him. It’s subtle, there are few clues to guide you out of a 6 minute trance, but for me, this song is centered around three big moments, which have this awesome chorus/drop hybrid feel to them. Between the drops, the arrangement swirls around to give this awesome pushing/pulling sensation that sets up the big moments with a sense of eventuality. There is a moment of silence, and then, boom, you feel it. To me, these moments represent my hazy flashes of realization in the midst of some drug induced stupor, and hearing a sonic representation of these ephemeral occurrences puts me in a thoughtful, open-minded place. I’m sure different people will have different reactions to this music, but I think this is art that forces a personal reaction in the listener if he or she listens closely. That’s why you should listen, and listen carefully to this song.

Shlohmo’s ‘Laid Out’ EP drops March 5 via Friends of Friends/Wedidit.