• Inauguration of the American act in STMPD
• Crossover of Bass and Tech House
• Simplistic schematics that is bound to work
As Fridays seem to fly over in these stranger times we are living in, I have found myself a bit detached from Dance music. I come across great productions now and then, thanks to computational algorithms which have made listening experiences a lot more fluid and ideal. Anyways, the last week of August had to offer variety of songs, among which 3LAU’s inauguration in the fore-running Dutch imprint STMPD caught my eye. Titled as “Apocalyptic” (ironically suitable naming) is the American producer’s one step forward towards House genre, and surprisingly enough it did gave me the entertainment in the short duration of its play-through. Let’s talk about it.
For the veteran among the readers, NY born 3LAU is more than a memorable act. Back in the golden times, he crafted splendid instrumentals such as “Escape” (with Paris & Simo and featuring Bright Lights) released in Revealed. He is perhaps best known for his another hit which came a year later or so, with the same native reputed vocalist titled “How You Love Me” in 2014. His sharp Electro-melodic signature in Progressive House schematics caught a lot of attention, including mine, making him a top contemporary up and coming talent. Over the years, industry happened, and he switched to trending style of EDM-pop, but not severing from the Electronic roots which gave him such acclaim. While I haven’t followed him closely for a couple of years now, I can vouch that the LA-based musician has done well-enough with releases spanning from underground favourite Anjunabeats (Can’t recommend “Tokyo” enough, such a hypnotic production for me!) to Armada recordings.
My interest is always piqued to see a entrée from a well-known figure on a different label than they are used to, and sure enough was the case with the mentioned club number. As we all know by now, STMPD takes massive interest in the House explosion that has been recently been happening, and we have talked about the niche of signature they have developed. 3LAU adeptly accepted this challenge, going out of his comfort zone of engineering a tune crossing over two main club-fitting sub-genres: Bass and Tech House.
Starting with a gritty atmosphere teasing the industrial wobbles ahead, presence of a computerized female vocal snippet adds to the sarcastic yet teasing vibe. Launching with aggressive Bass House characteristic synths, the low-end is suitably operated by a simple sub-laden bassline. Now, there can be mixed reaction to this, with some fraction of people believing there could be more elements working with each other, but at the same time, wouldn’t it conflict the minimal and polished vibe of the arrangement? A wee bit of experimentation further wouldn’t have hurt yes, because of which I considered the seventies as the proper ratings, nonetheless its a simple formula bound to be effective.
This being said, “Apocalyptic” checks the boxes of being a great dance-floor weapon albeit sacrificing a potentially more intriguing structure. But hey, as the wise men once said, if it sounds good then it is great enough!