Monthly Archives: March 2011

Show Your Shoe

As summer quickly approaches, we could all use a fresh dose of beach friendly disco jams, and our recent Swiss friend, Show Your Shoe, has delivered exactly that. Last week, 20 year old Swiss  producer Nico Mueller released his freshman EP, Technik City, on Teenage Gang Records. The EP is pretty rad on the whole, and definitely worth checking out. Within the 4 originals + two remixes of the track ‘Technik City – Jet Skiing’, there is loads of quirky, funked and chilled out nu-disco. Good, happy music for driving, sunbathing, or just going for a stroll. I’ve always loved the idea of slowed down disco music… it’s like you take that hectic party that is often associated with disco, and slow it way down for a more mellow, friendly party. Heaps of slow-mo disco vibes on Technik City.

My favorite songs off the EP are probably ‘Pandi’ and ‘Technik City – Arrival’, the latter of which can be found below. There are so many crazy ass sounds in ‘Arrival’, I have a hard time focusing on any one in particular. Paired up with that funky bass line and a little four-to-the-floor action, this track has a lot of energy for what is, in many ways, a really chill song. It’s fast and up-tempo, yet I feel like I’m in a calm, faraway land in the future when it’s playing.

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Shoe Your Shoe – Technik City – Arrival

This song is just really fun for me… puts a big smile on my face, inspires optimism, and is a great start to any day. No lyrics to get hung up on, just a solid jam throughout with ups and downs, dramatic breaks and surprising transitions. Just try to only play this track once, I dare you.

Nico’s decription of the song? – “Well, there’s a little girl that comes to Technik City, spends a little time there and then can’t return home because her family leaves in their spaceship without her, taking a lookalike robot with them. That’s what i was thinking.” I suppose that’s not a terribly happy story, but oh well… it works for me.

This next song I’ve really wanted to post for a while now. Show Your Shoe’s first remix happened to be for Futurcop! & Keenhouse’s single ‘Dreams’, which was actually a Binary release… and arguably the most outstanding of those remixes. It’s so incredibly funky, with a point at around 3 minutes where he actually transitions from lasers into seagull sounds!! That’s one of the best moments in a song for me in 2011. The piano adds a real nice touch to the original too. One of my favorite remixes in recent memory, and a great way for SYS to preview his bright future.

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Futurcop! ft. Keenhouse – Dreams (Show Your Shoe Remix)

Up is the only way

You can, and should, pick Technik City up over here on his label’s bandcamp to support the music and the dude. You can also get the rest of the ‘Dreams’ remixes + buy the original over on the Binary soundcloud page.

Finally, and just for the record, I love the name Show Your Shoe. Incites a bunch of fun dance imagery in my head, and just feels perfect for his style of music.

Pacific! – Unspoken (Anoraak Remix)

I’m going to operate under the premise that you’re aware of Anoraak already. Perhaps if you’re coming to this blog from Shuffler.fm or Hypem maybe you aren’t, but our regular readers should be. Rewind the clock back to 2007. We were diving head first into the world of electronic music, loving everything that we were finding, but always wishing that more people took a melodic approach to the songwriting, like Daft Punk’s more tender moments on Discovery. The summer of 2008 arrived and with it so did Anoraak and the rest of the Valerie crew. With one song Anoraak delivered my favorite song of 2008 and altered my entire belief of the potential for melodically driven dance music. That song was ‘Nightdrive With You’.

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Anoraak – Nightdrive With You

And you say…

I won’t rehash the song too much, except to say that even after hundreds of listens, the song still tugs on my heartstrings in a way few in my life has. Perhaps its the whispered, intimate vocals, or perhaps its the progressive, emotive bassline that really drives the song. Either way, the song holds up as well as any, and it still feels so fresh in my speakers.

The main reason I wanted to write about Anoraak is to highlight his current streak of remixes though. While his album is quite good (it was one of my favorites from last year), I don’t think it lived up to the public’s giant expectations that ‘Nightdrive With You’ left in its wake. I guess they were probably impossibly high. Its my belief that since Anoraak strayed a bit from some of the aesthetic principles of his early work, it alienated the public a bit and left his album to climb out of an impossibly deep hole of expectations. What I’m hearing in this newer batch of remixes though, is an Anoraak seemingly free of the shackles of expectations. The productions are grown up, complicated and interesting, and yet emotionally they seem to be harkening back towards the places that Nightdrive With You came from.

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Neon Indian – Psychic Chasms (Anoraak Remix)

A touch older, but a great example of Anoraak’s ability to draw emotion out of pretty much anything. The heartbeat bassline pounding through the layers of delayed synths works perfectly with Palomo’s (Neon Indian) filtered and tweaked vocals. Really just a pretty piece of music.

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Jupiter – Sake (Anoraak Remix)

Venturing into more of a dance oriented area, his recent remix for Jupiter bounces around with the kind of energy that early Valerie productions were known for. His productions are becoming much more organic though, especially in the drums, which I think is a great sign for future Anoraak originals. I love how Jupiter’s playful vocals play over the somewhat dark bassline that pulses underneath. Its like finding the girl with the kind of smile that you just know is trouble.

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Pacific! – Unspoken (Anoraak Remix)

Finally, Anoraak’s newest remix, for Pacific!, is the one that really brought me back in. Much like his originals where he lets his voice settle into that middleground between singing out and speaking, he works best with breathy vocals like these. To me this remix represents the perfect growth and balance between early “Nightdrive With You” Anoraak and the Anoraak from his full-length album. This remix is already one of my favorites of the year. I fall in love every time I hear it.

I have never seen you before

In the end, I’m excited for whatever Anoraak is planning with his music. I suppose its both a blessing and curse that he hit such a home run with his first swing. ‘Nightdrive With You’ is a song that launched a thousand followers (including the Bag Raiders actually, who’s Shooting Stars never gets written without Nightdrive). For better or worse, that song created unreasonably high expectations for his debut, which I think has turned out to be underrated by the public. What we’re seeing now seems to be an Anoraak comfortable in his own skin, crafting songs with the same kind of emotional naivete that made ‘Nightdrive With You’ possible, and yet with the newfound production skill that resulted from crafting his album.

Head to his facebook page and show him some love!

Heart this song and hear more by following Binary @ The Hype Machine

Written by Josh (Binary). Follow him on Twitter.

Cullen – Crazy Enough (Diamond Cut Remix)

Cullen is Stu Cullen from Melbourne, yet another badass Aussie producer (with a band?) on the rise towards prominence. The sounds coming out of this country seem to be endlessly delightful. He’s been on the radar of many since his debut single ‘Easily Impressed’, with remixes by the likes of Calling in Sick and Redial on that one. Cullen’s latest single, ‘Crazy Enough’ has been posted around a bit and is a really nice, catchy pop track off his upcoming album. When Diamond Cut remixes it, a beautiful little piece of synthy goodness is laid on the table. His shimmery sound paired with Diamond Cut’s dreamy rawness sets the scene for any day when spirits are high and everything seems just crazy enough to be possible.

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Cullen – Crazy Enough (Diamond Cut Remix)

I really enjoy the original, but this remix is a bit more delicious to my taste. Diamond Cut adds a subtle element of darkness, while maintaining an overall light, uplifting feel. Positive atmosphere on the whole, with a pleasant melody and beautiful transitions. That distorted bass paired with the mystic guitar riff right at the start had my full attention upon first listen. Add in some textured synths and Cullen’s distinctly soaring vocals, and you’ve got a pretty rad song to play on repeat.

This song fits the current early spring time of year perfectly. The winter is coming to an end, and for many that means a fresh start and warmer days. It’s a time of transitions, from the dark to light, cold to warm. Days are longer, and beach barbecue season is fast approaching. It’s like one of those days that starts out gloomy, wet, and cold, only to develop into a beautiful afternoon of warm sunshine. I’ve been blasting this out of my windows for weeks, and plan to continue doing so throughout my summer driving mixes.

Isn’t it crazy…

Cullen has been spending oodles of time in London working on his debut LP over the last year or so, and ‘Crazy Enough’ is just the first taste of the debut album. If you’re itching for more Cullen, check out the Viking remix of this song, and follow him on all relevant social networks to keep an eye out for a release date on his album. It should be out soonish.

On Repeat: Hemingway, A Gap Between, & More

A special Monday edition of On Repeat this week. This post was supposed to go up on Friday, but we were all somewhere in Austin for SXSW. By that point, I don’t think I was in any state to write about music. So, a few days late, here are the latest tracks that are on repeat at Binary.

We’ll kick it off with Lakes Of Light remixing Expatriate’s song “Crazy”. A great vocal track taken to a new level by Lakes. It reminds me a little of the style Lifelike used for his Does It Offend You, Yeah? remix a couple years back, particularly in with the 16th note bassline that drives the song along. Its the pleading vocals that make the song feel so important, so critical. I always let songs soundtrack my daily life, and when I’m drive to this song, I always drive with a bit more urgency. It reminds me of nights long ago I spent driving across the city for a girl, just so I could sit on her roof with her, hoping for a moment.

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Expatriate – Crazy (Lakes Of Light Remix)

 

We had a chance to go anywhere we want.

Bass Face (Hemingway’s Space Party Mix) – Cyclist by hmgwy

Like a breath of fresh mountain air, Hemingway returns to our life with this bouncy remix for Cyclist. I’m particularly a fan of his topical (live?) sounding bongo work. It sounds like 3am drives around LA, on summer days when all of your windows are down and even Sunset doesn’t have traffic. Sometimes its the times spent alone where you feel the most, and for whatever reason, this song feels like the coolest thing in the world when Im riding across the city on my own. The Lakes Of Light remix above might make me drive faster… but this one slows me to a crawl, taking in the city and every bright light it has to offer.

 

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A Gap Between – Neon Signs

If the songs above make me want to get in my car, this one makes me want nothing more than to be back on the beach on Cape Cod as a 17 year old kid. Warbly synths play around a bassline that I can only call ‘humid’. Vocals dance on top of it all to create a soundscape that feels like lying down and looking up at the night sky on the type of summer night when you could cut the air with a knife. This song has been the final song on both of the last 2 mix CD’s I burned for my car, and whenever I hear it, I’m taken back to a time when life oozed along as slowly as this song feels. Great work by A Gap Between.

 

Household Goods by T-E-E-D

I had the draft of this post up before we went to Austin for SXSW. (It was amazing as usual if you’re curious. We’re all alive and back in LA in one piece). Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs new single ‘Household Goods’ has been a song that I’ve had on repeat for some time, and was finally getting around to writing about it. Alas, I’m lazy and I never finished the post before we left for Texas. In any case, Wednesday night in Austin rolled around and my friend Rich texted me that we should roll to Beauty Bar, where I was told it was “going off”. Much to my surprise as I walked onto the dancefloor, TEED was behind the decks, a huge head-dress on, going bananas. Two songs later he played Household Goods to a packed house and my night was made. We all got extremely sweaty and made some new friends. We might post a lot of  ‘chill’ music on Binary, but when the time is right, we get down and dirty with the best of them. It’ll be one of my lasting memories from Austin of this year.


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AM & Shawn Lee – Dark Into Light

Dark Into Light is apparently a collaboration between Los Angeles songwriters AM & Shawn Lee. From the very first listen I loved the lilting soft vocals contrasting with the growling bass during the verse. It depresses me, makes me feel tired, and somehow brings up memories that I haven’t thought about in years. I’d say thats a big accomplishment for something as simple as a song. I think electronic music’s biggest challenge is finding a way to sound as intimate as a guy with a guitar can sound. This song accomplishes just that, and its something I wish a lot more artists would strive for.

Have we done our best to turn the wrong into right?

 

Heart this song and hear more by following Binary @ The Hype Machine

Written by Josh (Binary). Follow him on Twitter.

LexiconDon @ SXSW 2011

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LexiconDon – Boy Vs Girl Pt1

Binary band LexiconDon descends on Texas this week for SXSW, so what better way to kick it off than to give you guys the lead track from their album, “Boy Vs Girl Pt1″. I think the Binary crew is going to end up numbering near 10, and boy do we have some big plans this year. If you’re in Houston or Austin this week, check the schedule below to see when you can catch the LXD boys in action.

Tuesday: 10-2am in Houston Live w/ Hey Champ & Bit Funk @ Mainstage – 2016 Main Street Houston, TX

Wednesday: 2:30pm DJ Set @ Shout It Out Loud & GBH Present at Palm Door, 401 Sabine St

7:30 Live @ Lose Control at Vice 302 E. Sixth St.

Thursday: 5:30pm Live @ (Creme de la Creme) at Malverde

8:30pm Live @ The ELECTRODREAMAFUNKADELIC PARTY @ Lipstick24 606 East 7th Street

Friday: 8:30pm DJ Set @ The W Austin

Saturday: 2:30pm Live @ The Reverb Party at Parkside 301 E. 6th Street

10:00pm Live @ All Together Now Showcase

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LexiconDon – Sex N’ Turn Remix (ft. Rob Roy & Dude Royal)
Finally, check out this remix for LexiconDon’s new track “Sex N’ Turn” that features verses from dubFrequency artists Rob Roy and Dude Royal. If this thing doesn’t get you a little worked up, I’m not sure what will. And if you WONT be in Austin this week? Well, put this song on, take about 5 shots of Jameson, and go sit in the bathroom with a hot shower on. Thats about as close of an approximation to what this week will be like as I can offer.

Heart this song and hear more by following Binary @ The Hype Machine

Written by Josh (Binary). Follow him on Twitter.

On Repeat: Poolside, World Champion, & More

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World Champion – Dream

Sydney’s World Champion crafts just the kind of sparse pop track with “Dream” that almost cant go wrong. If you start with a hook as good as “I feel in love, it felt like a dream” all you can really do is screw it up by adding to much. World Champ hold back though. Guitar and bass paint a dreamy background for his vocals to dance over. The bell synths that accent the chorus is really just the icing on the cake.

Much like the photo below, the song is a quick transport into a world you can’t quite see. A reality left somewhere between a dream and a wish. You can’t see her face, you can just feel the moment, top down, wind swirling, everything perfect.

Future, it doesn’t matter. I fell in love, it felt like a dream.

Poolside – Do You Believe (Rough Mix2) by Poolside Music

Poolside is an up and coming LA production team that seems to have burst onto the scene on the strength of one perfect song. “Do You Believe” found its way onto Future Classic and is set to take the world into the life of a Los Angeles summertime pool party in the same way that Classixx did with “I’ll Get You” a couple summers ago. In a way, this song encapsulates what life in LA is really like better than anything Classixx has done. There’s a laziness to this track. Something so loose and uncalculated. Perhaps its the combination of nonchalant romanticism covered in a cloud of weed smoke that does the trick. Either way, listening to it transports me right to the Standard Rooftop, a mojito in hand and a mischievous thought or two in my head.

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Drame – Golden Gloves

Upstart french touch producer Drame comes next with his little gem of a track “Golden Gloves”. An almost too chaotic storm of basslines and intertwining synth patterns gives the song a frenetic feel. Every time I hear the song, I find myself lost in the patterns. By the time the ‘alarm clock’ hits and the song starts getting heavier, its like waking up to a pair of beautiful eyes. The freshest feeling in the world.

Yelle – Que Veux Tu (Madeon Remix) by Madeon

We’ll close things out with Madeon’s latest work. His strong record apparently earned him a commission from Yelle, which he subsequently knocked out of the park. I cant overstate how impressed I am with this guy’s sense of melody. His chord progressions are poppy and emotional, but they’re anything but cliche. They’re always unpredictable and creative.

So, sit back and enjoy this one. If it doesn’t make you smile and want to jump around on your bed, there’s something wrong with you.

Heart this song and hear more by following Binary @ The Hype Machine

Written by Josh (Binary). Follow him on Twitter.

Mitch Murder – Montage

The 1980s was a special decade, made possible by oozing neon, fast cars, synth driven dance music, and a booming economy in America. It was a unique time for not only electronic music, but an important era for culture in general. Stockholm’s Mitch Murder and his pals at Rosso Corsa Records must agree with this sentiment 110%. Much of the collective, which includes Lazerhawk, Flash Worx, and many others, rely heavily on the the decade of excess for inspiration. Influenced by the likes of Paul Hardcastle, Vince Dicola (of Rocky montage fame), and Jan Hammer (Miami Vice theme song), Mitch seems to be driven by the memory of the decade. As you can see from this slow building, neon-infused ‘Montage’, it can work out to be a really beautiful thing.

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Mitch Murder – Montage

I really want to be playing a slowed down version of F-Zero when I listen to this. ‘Montage’ itself is wonderful, and fit exactly for the purpose of it’s title. It begins with some mystically scattered synths, joined by dramatic drums, and really takes off around 1:20, leading you down a dark street dabbled in neon red “closed” signs. A little after 2 minutes, things get real epic and there’s no turning back… you’re running down that desolate sidewalk in search of something: a girl, the last bus, or maybe just that cafe on the corner that still has a flicker of light left for your tummy. The synths, light piano, and softly booming drums all come together for something that ought to paint the soundscape of an overly dramatic moment in one of the Rocky movies (which has been done, youtube it.)

You can find yourself entranced with the jams on Murder’s soundcloud page for hours… it’s pure ’80s, dreamwave bliss. Every one of the songs sounds like it could soundtrack an epicly dramatic scene in a ’70s or ’80s movie. Some songs could be set in a dance club scene, while others could be a late night car chase down the PCH, or a dramatic escape from police with coke lines left out all over the kitchen counter. One song titled ‘sports!’ sounds like the backing track to a late ’70s Sportscenter episode. His latest snippet up there is from the elevator music EP, which includes a bunch of stuff from “before the whole ’80s thing”, and gives you a tiny feel for what else Mitch has up his sleeve. You can download that via a mediafire link on his soundcloud, which is pretty retro. His television EP from 2010 is also available on his bandcamp page.

‘Montatge’ comes off of Mitch Murder’s debut album Burning Chrome, which can be purchased over here on iTunes. If you like the little taste that ‘Montage’ provided, you’ll probably dig the rest of Burning Chrome. Check out the promo video for the album below to get a little taste of expectations. Enjoy!

Them:Youth – Toothache (StardonE Remix)

StardonE is a producer who really got under our skin once we listened to his tracks (thankfully he kept em’ coming to our inbox). We first posted about him back in September and now we can’t get enough. StardonE, an electronic, disco specialist, is now with Oktokki Records alongside fellow South Korean artist Cassette Schwarzenegger. Take a listen to the StardonE remix of Them:Youth’s ‘Toothache’ and become a believer.

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Them:Youth – Toothache (StardonE Remix)

Them:Youth is a 4-piece indie, rock band from the good old UK. Mark, Ilan, Allan and Paul mix hard guitar rifts, fast punching drums, killer synths and smooth vocal stylings’ to make some really fun tracks deserving of a spot on the pre-game playlist. Check out their track ‘Fever Rising’ for some nice highs and lows.

I love that both the original and the remix of ‘Toothache’ don’t waste a second—the beat comes in hard from the start (maybe not right away for the original, but enough). StardonE’s bouncy, pop melody makes the vocals a bit more delectable. He slows the song down highlighting the lyrics “high on a heartbeat” and all I think about is that amazing, yet terrifying butterfly feeling you get in the pit of your stomach, usually from a certain someone. StardonE kept the cowbells throughout and added some sweet claps and of course the amazing, high trumpeting keys at 3:34.

When I watch the original video I can only think of one thing… Donnie Darko. If you have seen the movie you will know what I’m talking about and I’m kinda crazy about the video for just that reason.

On Repeat: Jensen Sportag, El Guincho, & More

We’ve started a new series here on the blog to highlight a few tracks that we’d love to comment on, but don’t have the time to write full posts for. We got great feedback on the feature last week, so we’re sticking with it. As always, these are the songs that are getting tons of play from the Binary writers and artists this week.

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Miami Nights 1984 – Elevator Of Love

We’ll start with “Elevator Of Love”. This blog was built on a sand castle of dreamwave, and from time to time, when I hear a song like this, it gets me so nostalgic that I can hardly handle it. Something about the emotional major chords and simplicity of songs like this just cut straight to the heart. Miami Nights 1984 hits this vibe with every song on his debut record, which I suggest you pick up. This song, in particular rubs me in all the right places. Its as if the chords scream out in innocence. Before I know it, I’ve got my eyes closed and I’m remember walks around my neighborhood and the girl in class that I couldn’t stop staring it.

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Jensen Sportag – Everything Good

Nashville’s Jensen Sportag have been a band Kyle and I have watched closely since the early days of Binary. They’ve grown and evolved, and now with their latest EP, they seem to have found a sound perfectly fitting to their style. “Everything Good” is a funk laden dream that feels as thick as a humid day in the middle of summer. The song is drenched in sweat, reverb, and sex. There are a few nights every year when the air gets as thick as water, and when you’re out, everyone is sweaty and its completely ok. There’s something special in the air in those nights, and this song feels like its bringing that out perfectly.

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El Guincho – Bombay

Now here’s an older song by El Guincho thats been covered ad-infinitum by every blog in the world. Not long ago I was hanging out with Binary guys’ Fabian and Alex from LexiconDon and we blasted through most of Pop Negro with our mouths agape at how perfect it is. This song in particular is such a fresh take on a style that we love, that we felt like we had to comment on it. Everybody in Binary loves this song and this group. I’m surprised the MP3 still plays in my iTunes after the number of times I’ve played it. How should this song make you feel? Well, this picture sums it up for me.

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Fenech-Soler – Demons (Sam Padrul Remix)

Lastly, we’ve got Sam Padrul’s remix for Fenech-Soler. A bit more on the poppy side, he injects the song with a huge dose of energy. Next time I’m heading out to a party in Venice, you better believe this song is blasting out my windows. With any luck I’ll have a car full of girls with me and they’ll be singing right along with me.

I was wondering. Will I ever see you again?

Heart this song and hear more by following Binary @ The Hype Machine

Written by Josh (Binary). Follow him on Twitter.

 

Classixx – Into The Valley

Green Label Sound continues their remarkable run of releases with Classixx’s second single, “Into The Valley”. Like Los Angeles’ counter to Brooklyn’s Holy Ghost, Classixx too has gone soulful disco, and yet they do it with a coolness that can only come from SoCal residents. You can head over to the GLS website for more info and a download should you choose to.

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Classixx – Into The Valley

I’m not sure what the song is really about, but some of the lyrics immediately make me think of the kind of the gypsy-like young females that tend to populate the valleys around LA. A touch of hippie style, a lot of weed smoke in the air, and an eye for laid back fashion that feels like they could only truly be comfortable in the city of angels. Of course, Brooklyn’s Karl Dixon is singing, so I’m most likely wildly wrong about the subject.

I do know that I get ‘mystified’ from time to time, and at first listen this song sent me into the valley where these kind of people exist.

For Classixx, this seems like an important statement. Their last single, 2009′s wildly popular “I’ll Get You” spawned a litany of copycats trying to re-create the magic of the “do you like bass?” hook. This song is the first taste of the Classixx that produced their Phoenix and Yacht Remixes. The yacht rock influences emerge a bit, but not at the expense of the Classixx style. This song seems to have bridged the gap perfectly, much like Holy Ghost has done with their full length. I have to say I prefer California laid back disco to Brooklyn beatnik disco, but regardless of your preference, this song should give you taste of what sweaty summer days are like in LA when you can’t make it to the beach.

Heart this song and hear more by following Binary @ The Hype Machine

Written by Josh (Binary). Follow him on Twitter.