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Outside Lands 2018: Women Rocked It

But Durand ruled the hottest, yet coldest day of the festival

Outside Lands hasn’t had a woman headline in its eleven-year existence, until 2018. They must have felt especially bad because two dominated this year. First with Florence on Saturday and last with Janet closing out Sunday. Over the past few years, Sundays seem to be the day. They’ve stacked it well.

For the last two years, I’ve started off Sunday early. I go the whole day. Doing it all three days is probably a challenge not worth taking, but I recommend going all day at least once. It’s a lot warmer, Golden Gate Park is perpetually cold. There’s less dust flying around, because of the best thing yet, no crowds! There’s nothing better at a festival than going up to the main stage and being able to dance with some space to a great soul band. And boy was there one each year!

Last year’s Sunday opened with two soul singers, Lee Fields and then Jacob Banks, who are growing on me more with time and accumulating songs. This year, all it had to be was Durand Jones & The Indications. Durand Jones’ voice was expectedly powerful, but his drummer’s voice was something else.

When I first heard Aaron Frazer that day, I thought it was just a recording. I couldn’t see anyone singing and it was too good to be true live. It wasn’t, Aaron’s voice was there, live, and took me back farther than any other contemporary soul singer. It felt as classic as anyone ever has. In that falsetto kind of way.

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Dance Party 2014

Ain't no party like a dance party.

I’ve gone to a handful of EDM shows & festivals over the last year and I just don’t get how people can dance to most of the popular shit these days (says the hipster music blogger). At least not when you’ve got such better music to dance to (also hipster). So obviously we had to put a list together (very hipster).

Our Dance Party mix for 2014 is geared more towards the club or house party rather than the rave. I guess that’s where we differ from the higher BPM, bombastic music dominating EDM right now.

We get into various forms of house music on here, but there’s plenty of other influences as well — I’m being vague because I just spent way too much of my time putting together this list and I don’t have time to articulate it (like always).

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Remixed Right 2014, Vol. 4

When a remix is not just an edit

I had a good talk with a few of my coworkers yesterday about remixing and they brought up a good point. A lot of remixers just don’t add enough to the original to warrant credit.

So many of the remixes I favorite on SoundCloud turn out to be not all that different from its original. Often times this is because dj’s are adding in simple edits, something as simple as a synth, to make the music more danceable.

The point of a remix is to take something from a song, whether it be a vocal or other memorable part, and update it into a more modern sound or flip it into a completely different style, among others I’m sure.

I actually had to get rid of a few that were originally on here because of that very problem. They brought something new to the song, but it’s really the same tune, just an edit. And maybe producers should start labeling it as such.

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Beyond Wonderland 2013

A trip without tripping, that's the plan.

Last year I heard Insomniac was taking its Wonderland festival and bringing it to The Bay. The thing I remember most when looking into Beyond was that Insomniac was trying to create a festival so visually & audibly stimulating there was no need to rely on ecstasy or LSD. As you can imagine, I was pretty eager to find out how well they pulled it off both personally as well as for other attendees. And as much as I can’t speak for them, though some of the pictures can, I will speak a little on my own account.

Visually, everything was pretty enchanting my two nights there, but during the day the drabness of the Shoreline Amphitheater seeped through. Much of the crowd was dressed in full fantasy and really made the scene more than anything. But where as the visuals were decent, the music faltered.

Some of the night acts, namely Zeds Dead & WhiteNoize, were a helluva time, but the music that played most of the day can best be described by one song, the dirty bit version of ‘Time’ by The Black Eyed Peas. In other words, once the beat dropped everything went to shit […]

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Know Good Indie Labels, 2013

12 independent record labels with a well imagined roster

Independent record labels are sprouting up all over the place in location & style. And the ones that are doing it right not only have a choice selection in catalogue, but also take the time to artfully craft their image as they do their artists.

Each of these 12 labels sport some of the most well respected producers & musicians that belong on this blog and create a culture with style around their music. On here I may point out a few that lack in proper online presence, but they are all doing it right when it comes to the perception of this era’s evolution in music labels.

Check out the Top 12 Labels »

Big Gigantic & GRiZ · Power

We need to see more collaborations like this

I thought I heard something about a Big Gigantic // GRiZ collaboration. Weren’t they callin themselves Big Griz or Grizantics or some shit like that Whatever they’re goin by, their first single is one step up for this power-house duo. ‘Power’ is an anthem of a song with an electro-funky, industrious style. But the best part of all, that Gigantic of a sax solo, I gotta thing for the brass.

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Outside Lands 2012 : Who I’m Going to See!

Plus a mixtape to get all you SF Bay Area folk prepared

Outside Lands 2012 has an eclectic set of artists to say the least. I’ll be covering it this year and even though my main goal is to see acts I’ve never heard before, there are a few I know who I’ve got to see! Check out my top picks for Outside Lands 2012 below and let me know who I should and shouldn’t see (here‘s the full line up). If you happen to be going as well, hit me up in the comments or on Twitter and we can meet up!

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Best Music of 2011 (Part 5) : Electronica

with a dash of dubstep sprinkled on because we love that bass face

Other than the Mixes & Mashes, 2011 was the year of Electro Music here on SNG. It all started out through our transition with hip-hop. I remember thinking to myself that we needed more uptempo, dance type music. A year later and the majority of the site is just that. As much as we need to hop back on the hip-hop wagon, this electro ride has been one of our favorites!

To the Electro-Goodness »

Big Gigantic · Nocturnal

This makes me want to boogie hard, baby!

I am way too goddamn late to the BG party. I haven’t given them the needed time they deserve, but I promise you all that will change.

In the second single released off their upcoming album, “Nocturnal” is a heavy electro beat with melodies that could string a ray (I just like how it sounded). Best of all, it’s sprinkled with that brass instrument I love too much, especially when it’s incorporated into electronica. You know, that saxy one ;) ;) Have at it and make sure you check out the first single, “Rise and Shine,” if you haven’t.

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Big Gigantic · Rise and Shine

Throw a little saxy into this electro-fuck

I may be diggin the electronic scene a bit too much lately, but I still got so much love for the classics. In fact, if you aren’t throwin in a little brass or any of the other families into your electro-set, you’re seriously lacking.

Big Gigantic’s “Rise and Shine” is a perfect example of this blend of electronic, brass and percussions. With one sultry leading sax by Dominic Lalli and a rockout drum performance by Jeremy Salke, this shit barely needs the electronic touch – but for the sake of today’s youth infatuated electro-goers, the mix of it all sets any raver off right.

The “Rise and Shine” single is off their upcoming album, Nocturnal, which is set to release early, early 2012. Cannot wait for that saxy beast.

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