Monthly Archives: November 2009

Ali Love – Diminishing Returns

Here’s another track that received its 15 minutes of blog fame about a month ago. Of course everyone has moved along by now, only to leave this track somewhere in the graveyard of their bloated iTunes. Well, screw that. This track is too good to deserve that fate. With so much crap floating through the blogosphere, its a shame that really good tracks get the same amount of exposure as a lot of mediocre stuff that pushes it the quality aside.

Anyway, here’s to giving this track a bit more of a listen. Featuring quality synthwork and emotional vocals, Ali Love delivers a great track for 4am contemplative drives. Its no barnburner, and its no huge layered synth dreamwave jam either. Its full of air and space, for those times when your mind is cluttered and you just need to think.

Ali Love – Diminishing Returns

This song is one part Balearic disco, and one part dreamwave. When the synth stabs come in, the songs character really starts to come out. Through the verses, the tension builds up, mostly thanks to a fantastic italo-sounding plucking synth arpeggio.

It reminds me of times when life’s decisions are at the front of your mind. The kind of late, sleepless nights, when life’s biggest questions are begging to be answered.

“Wave goodbye to all my innocence”

When mistakes are made, and you just cant help but replay it over and over in your head.

Watch out for Ali Love. They have a good team behind them and I’m sure we’ll be hearing more good stuff from them in the future.

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Xuman – Panic

Annnnd we’re back, with a great tune from Russians Xuman. I am slowly becoming alarmed at the great quality of music coming from Russia. Between Xuman and Tesla Boy, I’m starting to wonder if there are a bunch of Swedish people moving to Moscow.

This is serious pop music right here. There’s something about over-the-top, almost cheesy pop that only people in Sweden, Norway, and Russia can pull off. For some reason they dive in so hard, with all of their heart, that you can’t help but take them seriously. Tesla Boy’s EP was so polished it was almost blinding in bubble gum pink. Could they have pulled that off if they were from LA??? HELL NO. But that EP is GREAT.

This song right here is right up the same alley. From the uber cheesy bass solo opening the track, straight through the rocket fueled chorus, Panic is nothing but concentrated endorphin releasing funk-pop.

Xuman – Panic

We’ve all been there. Days when everything goes wrong. You just want to pull your hair out. That’s this song right there. Its for those moments when you just want to run and hide.

“This is panic”

“Now don’t you panic/Just try to keep it/inside your brain.”

Xuman is legit. Go check him out on myspace k?

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NightWaves – Fascination (Keenhouse + O’Dahl Remix)

We’re back with a couple more really great remixes of “Fascination” for you guys. Really it’s hard to rank all the remixes that Binary got for this song, especially since it’s a song that is close to the heart for Josh and I, but I will say that I really really love these two and they’re near the top of my list. All the remixes bring their own unique angle to the song, and these two are no exception.

NightWaves – Fascination (Keenhouse Remix)

You guys know that we’re in LA, and that we rep the city and all the dreams it has to offer pretty hard. A lot of you are from the City of Angels as well, but a lot of you are from elsewhere, and I’m sure your cities have equally cool things to offer, and I look forward to the day I visit each and every one of those new places. But for all of you that haven’t experienced the joy of living here, there is one thing that you won’t know until you’ve experienced it. Vegas!!

Sure, people go to Vegas from all over the world…but there is something special about a midnight ride through the desert that separates LA and Vegas. I can’t help but think of that when I listen to this remix. More and more I’m hearing this in Keenhouse’s productions…a sound that I have now dubbed Casino Funk…since we’re dubbing sounds and all, ya know. I think I’m calling it that thanks to his very signature sound. It’s swanky, it’s exciting, it’s optimistic, it’s bright. Just like those Vegas nights that always come as a surprise. Some of the best memories I’ve had out here on the west coast are those special Friday afternoons in college where the stars align and Vegas comes to light. My friends and I would get home from class or wherever around 6 PM, and two words would spark off a weekend of adventure…”Vegas…tonight!”

Throw some clothes in a bag, grab a button-up shirt, a nice pair of shoes, and don’t forget the bottle of booze. Hit the road at 8 to avoid the crawl of traffic on the 10 of the suburbanites heading back east to their endless stretch of towns propelling outwards from the city. The first excitement comes when you hit the 15. It’s a straight shot to Vegas and everything that awaits you in the next 48 hours. Suddenly you’re away from the towns, and just like verse in Keenhouse’s remix, there is a mysticism that descends upon you from the openness of the desert. Like the beat of the song, you keep driving, pushing it as hard as you can. The freeway moves down to two lanes and it’s time to bust out all your driving skills…stay in a pack when you can, move to the next one when you can. Look for cops, watch the bends in the road. Watch the endless string of cars as they head over the mountain pass at 4000 ft. 40 miles straight ahead of you. You eventually hit Baker, CA…stop at the Mad Greek and get a gyro for some energy to last you through the night. There is an hour left in the four hour journey.

And as you cross the Nevada border, you see the lights of the first casinos in Primm Valley. Keep going. And then suddenly, you turn the corner around a mountain bend, and there it is. Vegas stretches in front of you with it’s endless expanse of glimmering lights. The chorus of the song kicks in. We made it! Pull into a parking garage, get out and stretch your legs, and pass the bottle of Captain Morgan around, getting a nice slick of liquor in your belly. We head into the fog of the casino, hazy from cigarette smoke and processed air, and the shimmer of the slot machines, and the noise of people winning and losing fortunes. We hit the craps table and join that crowd. Everyone is here…other reveling kids from LA, foreign businessmen, the degenerate gamblers, girls that are obviously strippers and the tourists that are obviously trying to score with them. Everyone is here and enjoying it. Enjoying being in this special place at this very special time. Make sure to tip your cocktail waitress with a couple chips when she brings you your jack and coke. Get your shoes on and hit a club. Find some strangers to dance with. Make some friends and keep the night going. Loud bass. Music and drinks. Keep the party alive.

And then, you step outside and you realize the sun has been awake for a long time. But not as long as you. You want to crash but you can’t, you need to push on. Find a decent champagne buffet and regroup with your friends, new and old. Laugh in a semi-drunken haze, trying to figure out what happened last night. And then, find a cheap hotel room at the Flamingo or Excalibur…a place of solace and closed curtain dark rooms where you can sleep the day away. Get ready to do it again in 10 hours.

And Sunday morning comes the same way as the end of Keenhouse’s remix. You get back on the freeway and Vegas and everything that goes along with it slowly fades into the distance

NightWaves – Fascination (O’Dahl Remix)

Our favorite Swede ODahl delivers this awesome take on Fascination. I could seriously write just as much as I did for the Keenhouse remix, but I’ll spare you. I will say that I think he captured the essence of the original best. Remember the club you were at last night on our Keenhouse journey to Vegas? Remember the stranger you met and danced with all night. Well this is the song you remember most out of all the songs you and her danced the night away to. It captured the magic, the chance encounter that you two would find each other for one night in a place like that. The chorus comes in and the bittersweet feelings of being together in that one moment were electrified. There were fireworks that you’ll never forget.

Thanks to O’Dahl for really understanding what this song is supposed to be. His production prowess shines through and the way he affects the vocals and works them into the mix and the rest of the song really strikes a chord. Like your mystery girl in the club, it’s a song that won’t be forgotten.

NightWaves – Fascination, and Binary Presents: LA Lights, are available digitally everywhere. You guys should really check it out!

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The Scare – Could Be Bad (G.L.O.V.E.S Remix)

GLOVES was responsible for one of our all time favorite dreamwave remixes ever, for Van She’s ‘Changes’, which ended up on our Dreamwave Hour 2. While laying back for a bit, they’ve recently returned, releasing a new single and few new remixes.

Today we’ve got our favorite of the new remixes, this one for The Scare’s song, Could Be Bad. Featuring vocals reminiscent of The Presets, quick sample stabs, and pumping discofunk bass, its a track that primed and ready to get your night started right.

The Scare – Could Be Bad (G.L.O.V.E.S Remix)

Of course this remix by GLOVES, taken in a larger context, proves that the Aussies just keep killing it.
Some nights are just predestined to be perfect. I can’t help but imagine blasting this track, windows down, a car full of people… Just one of those ideal nights.

Work it out. Work work it out. Work it out.

Very rad track. The bassline completely kills me.

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Fabian – Heatwave (Remixes)

Continuing with the last remixes from our record, LA Lights here this week. Today we’ve got 3 remixes from Fabian’s barnburner, Heatwave.

You can get LA Lights here, which features some really great songs and a lot of stuff that you haven’t heard around the blogs.

Fabian will also be playing his first live set in a few months this Friday at The Echoplex with Thunderheist. Check out the event here. It’s gunna be sick and you don’t wanna miss Fabian playing Heatwave live for the first time ever!

Fabian – Heatwave (Russ Chimes’ Funkwave Remix)

I remember sometime in 2008 hearing Mulsanne while sitting in our office. Ever since Russ Chimes has been right at the top of our list of ‘wouldn’t it be amazing if we could get a remix from…’ list. We thought Chimes would be perfect for Heatwave because of his great work in the past with vocoders and adding his own vocal touch into remixes. Of best note are his remixes for College and The Outrunners. We just knew he could kill this track with some ‘Heatwave’ vocals.

What we received was both surprising and awesome. Russ stepped it back a notch and found himself a whole new kind of groove. No longer am I dying to race 200mph while listening to a song of his. Instead now I’m tossed into the sweaty groove of a carribean dance floor killer.

Guitars swirl around the mix, pushing the song forward. As Russ comes in proclaiming, “You know Im gunna give it to you, Heatwave,” you know he is. No big Chimesian buildup, and none needed. This is the kind of track you put on first thing in the morning. It’ll wake you up without hurting your brain, but gets your blood flowing in just the right way.

Russ Chimes brings the funkwave and that truly is the best description for this track that you’d ever need.

Fabian – Heatwave (Short Circuit’s Heatstroke Edit)

Next is Binary’s own artist, Short Circuit, giving Heatwave a dancefloor makeover. Here’s the edit that we’ve all needed. It makes the track perfect for playing out, without losing any of the character of the original. Short Circuit has developed a bit of a remix sound that revolves around his adept (but not fidgity) use of chopping up samples and turning them into a new groove.

He takes this approach here to great success. Fabian’s original is big and epic and sweeping, but without much pop or punch in it. SC takes it right there to the other side of the dancefloor. You can’t help but nod your head to this track, and it BOUNCES.

It makes me want to get on a sweaty dancefloor somewhere downtown in LA. Perhaps at the Airliner, as we did in the early times of Binary. It brings me back to then, when we’d watch SC dj to a crowd of, well, lets just say it was a pretty diverse group of people.

****PS. Watch out for TNUC’s video for Heatwave that’s on its way in the near future!

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The Sound Of Arrows – Into The Clouds (Fear Of Tigers Remix)

The Sound Of Arrows and Fear Of Tigers both made their splashes into the blog world in 2008 crafting epic, almost over the top, songs about love, passion, life, and death. In a world filled with people trying to be too-cool-for-school, both of these groups are unabashedly emotional and go for the stars every time they release a track.

Naturally, when TSOArrows released their big 2nd single, “Into The Clouds”, it made perfect sense to have synth-smith Fear Of Tigers take on a remix with the goal of shattering the stratosphere.

Binary guys are usually pretty cool with letting loose with some super pop here and there, but this song really takes things to an awesome new level. For the record, I’m not sure I could really handle hearing this kind of stuff all day, but I sure am a sucker for a massive, triumphant, epic, emotional rollercoaster of a song here and there. Put it this way, this is the kind of song Diamond Cut would require 3 tweets to gush over.

After listening to the song 5 times back to back, I think I’m still flying up towards the moon. Lets get at it.

The Sound Of Arrows – Into The Clouds (Fear Of Tigers Remix)

“Lets escape this town…. The streets, the cars and the crowds… and into the clouds.”

This is the kind of song you put on when the best things in life happen to you. Headphones on, walking down the street. This is the best soundtrack for days when you cant be touched.

Its a song for the scene in your favorite movie when the dork gets the girl after 2 hours of trying.

It makes me want to jump around and laugh.

Or jump into the Pacific with all my clothes on. Meet me at the beach eh?

Thanks Discodust.

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NightWaves – Fascination Remixes

We brought you NightWaves‘ single, ‘Fascination’ last week along with 2 great remixes. Today we’ve got 3 more great remixes for the track.

Fascination is an interesting song to remix, because it can be taken in a lot of different contexts. The vocals in the original have a melancholy vibe, but are easily transformed into a triumphant love song, much like how Junkie XL transformed the song. Today we’ve got 2 more for you. One is from We Plants Are Happy Plants, the man behind one of the most successful songs we’ve ever posted here. The other is from Cavaliers of Fun, who really took this song towards the infamous realm of yacht funk.

NightWaves – Fascination (Cavaliers Of Fun Remix)

Starting with the Cavaliers Of Fun remix, which starts off sounding like the climax of a dark musical. Before you know it though, the bass kicks in, and you’re transported to a land of funky flavors. The Cavaliers add in some vocals of their own in the verse. The ‘ohhhs’ they add take this song in such a great new direction.

Its the story of the perfect romance. Two embraced underneath a permanent sunset. This track can sit next to Hemingway’s take on ‘Ari-es’ anyday.

And then, the finale. He find the lyrics “I” “You” “Dreams” and links them together to form the perfect dreamwave outro.

Sounds like the ending credits to an 80’s teen romance movie that was never made. Pure gold.

NightWaves – Fascination (WPAHP Remix)

We Plants Are Happy Plants take Fascination and works orchestral magic around it. They play on the melancholy vibe of the original and in some ways amplify it. The song feels even more meaningful. The fate of the world is lying in the arms of the character here.

We’ve all been there though. WPlants builds the tension that never quite releases (in a good way) with strings on top of strings.

The vocals ring out, and I’m left feeling lost and confused in the fog. The song paints a picture of someone who’s lost it all, but keeps that glimmer of hope in their eyes. Like a drunken evening wandering through the haze, the song feels like its drenched in fog.

I can’t help but get emotional hearing a song like this. The layers of reverb, combined with the pads, the strings, and the echoing drums…

Great work.

Of course, NightWaves – Fascination is just one of the 14 songs on Binary Presents: LA Lights, which you can pick up by finding the player and accompanying links just at the top of this page.

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Catcomplex – Love Gemma

Catcomplex comes to Binary today via Spain. Their song, Love Gemma, is a great example of tension and release dreamwave. It reminds me a lot of We Plants Are Happy Plants, or Cinnamon Chasers. Like the best kinds of music, it makes me think about late night encounters with the best kinds of girls.

Catcomplex – Love Gemma

From the moment the song starts with the minor, ringing, synth chord you can feel the tension in the sound. A quickly strumming synth guitar just serves to add to the thickness in the air. Catcomplex really does a great job building tension over the course of the song without the song sounding like one long transy buildup (I think this is one of the most underrated difficulties that all dance producers have… How do you create proper tension without making it long and boring? The french decided all you need is a low pass filter).

Its like a night spent with your eyes across the room. Glances tossed back and forth. A smile thrown your way. A chance (or maybe not so much) encounter at the bar. Its loud so they have to talk right next to you. See, its all tension building. The best part of life.

And the song, just moving along, with no vocals, matching the tension. And then, like a ray of light… or a kiss in the alley behind the bar..

“Its timmmmmmeeeeee”.

Such a great payoff, completely unexpected and utterly successful.

We all know it. The tension is just as enjoyable, maybe more so, than the actual payoff.

The payoff can be pretty nice though.

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Fabian – Heatwave

It’s unseasonably hot right now here in Los Angeles. Coinciding with Halloween, the recent heatwave tends to make everyone a little nutty. Our friend Dillon described Hollywood Blvd on Halloween as, “the craziest” he’d ever seen it. Sometimes, in the colder months, when we get a bit of a warm spell, its like the sun reaches into everyones’ chests and turns on an energy switch. People get a wild look in their eye and crazy things happen. Nights on the town turn into 3am hikes to the Hollywood sign, or sunrise swimming sessions in the Pacific. Romances are born and die in flames in the blink of an eye. This is true in any city. A heatwave brings out the best and the worst in people.

Fabian – Heatwave

Simply put, this is our dreamwave anthem of the year. It’s true to every definition of the genre the genre thats ever been written. Emotional, over the top, and ready for a festival dancefloor, Fabian’s barn-burner ‘Heatwave’ has been the song that’s defined the summer of 2009 for Binary. It’s been the theme song to our rooftop pool parties at The Standard, and my nights have been full of blasting down Sunset Blvd with Heatwave coming through my speakers.

Its a song full of hope and promise. It’s the kind of song that can unexpectedly murder a dancefloor, but its the pure definition of a windows down, summertime driving song. When I listen to it with my eyes closed with headphones on, it can take me to a whole different world.

Heatwave’s bring out the child in people, and this song takes you right there. Back to being 17 and with THAT girl. Not a care in the world except whether or not that girl DID just look you in the eyes and wink.

Like a trip to the beach with a car full of friends and a cooler.

Like the long buildup before that first kiss.

And like the drive home afterwards.

Like nights spent amongst friends, not a care to be had, on top of the world.

Fabian’s ‘Heatwave’ is one of the singles off of Binary’s record, Binary Presents: LA Lights. You can pick it up from any digital retailer, or click here for a list of online stores.

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