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Your Summer Playlist

If your musical thirst is drenched by the likes of Bright Light Bright Light, TYP and Empire of the Sun, than here’s two more albums to add to your playlist this Summer.
Ryan Merchant and Sebu Simonian of Capital Cities delivered a superb full length earlier this month. In a Tidal Wave of Mystery is a line you will have heard in the duo’s debut single Safe and Sound, a song they first released some two years ago. If you loved the horns and the feel-good vibe of the track, you’re in for a treat. The whole album follows the same recipe, without sounding the same. The only break from this routine comes with Farrah Fawcett Hair, a radio commercial- like track featuring André 3000 and Shemika Secrest, narrated by NPR’s Frank Tavares. The new single Kangaroo Court will surely get you on board, if you’re not already.


In the same line, ever so superb but maybe a bit more divers, is SlowKnights’ album Cosmos, released back in March. SlowKnights is Scissor Sisters’ Derek “Del Marquis” Gruen’s latest collaboration, after working with musicians such as Xaxier, and members of Prince’s New Power Generation and his own Scissor Sisters.
Gruen only lays down lead vocals on Legendary Children. Other vocalists include Xavier, former Scissor Sister members Chrissi Poland and Bridget Barkan, and Rod Thomas (a.k.a. Bright Light x2), who is back on board after collaborating with Del Marquis on his own debut Make Me Believe In Hope. Cosmos perfectly blends funk & pop, with a seamless track listing and seductive sounds.

Delv!s on his own

Up High Collective is a bunch of guys from Leuven (Belgium) who like to get creative with sound, vision and graphic design. This resulted in a number of experimental festival grooves. No better way to describe their music than how they do on their Facebook page: “Razor-sharp pieces of future soul, boppin’ from the deceptively light and skippy to whirlpool synthlines and hydraulic sub pressure. All trademarked by a signature lick of R&B gloss and sunken subs with ultra-sparse rhythm architecture”.
The first single the Collective released, Blend, became an instant underground hit in 2010. Much of its success should be attributed to vocalist Delv!s, or simply Delvis (real name Niels Delvaux), who’s sound perfectly encaptures “future Soul”, with a vocal that sits somewhere between Cee Loo Green and Remy Shand. In 2011 Niels also collaborated with Title on Sidechain Reaction, a track released on his Brussels’ On Point label. As an artist in his own right, he has supported Selah Sue and the legendary Betty Wright. Now he’s got his first solo record out. Tell Me sounds timeless. Watch a reggae-ish live performance below. And in case you are not familiar with Up High Collective, a throw back to Blend after the jump. Time to rewind and unwind!

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Vandaag, a touch of Dutch

Introducing another producer enjoying overnight success: Bakermat, aka  Lodewijk Fluttert, from Holland. In no less than a few months, Bakermat has garnered a huge following. So far his only actual release, on Delicieuse Records, is the extended play Vandaag, consisting of the tracks Vandaag and Zomer (DM Exclusive Remix). His likings of jazz and blues are very apparent on Vandaag.  The deep house number combines saxophone, flutes and trumpets with a sample of Martin Luther King’s illustrious speech. You might find the thought a little revolting, to hear such historic lines on a mixtape. Nevertheless, the groove has the right kind of –positive – vibe. Cantaloop all over again.

Malinchak brings the Sun

Daft Punk’s chart domination is being challenged by New York-based DJ /Producer Chris Malinchak. Just like Get Lucky’s disco vibe, his soulful house groove So Good To Me is the perfect antidote to the thumping electro beats –by the likes of Will.i.am– riding the charts. Signing to Ministry of Sound, Chris is working his way from the decks to the charts. The song breathes Summer Love. Malinchak cleverly samples two Soul classics in his mellow tune: If This World Were Mine by Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell and Soul II Soul’s Back To Life. Listen carefully and see if you can spot Marvin near the end. One for a Summer night.

‘n Chillow

Belgian producer dj Chillow teams up with his longtime pal Jeffrey Jefferson on the second in his ‘n Chillow series. Jefferson aka Gringo already featured on the first album Reap ‘n Chillow- NY2BE . Jefferson ‘n Chillow – Muddy Grounds is the second album on which Chillow collaborates with fellow artists. Jefferson has a Rap background, but with his band SoulRock Avenue he ventures into singing Neo Soul. This is exactly what the new project is about, creating a mature Hawthorne-like sound. You can preview the first single Muddy Grounds here.