Friday, February 29, 2008

Whodini - Whodini


Whodini, "The Haunted House of Rock" (YSI link)

Whodini, "Underground" (YSI link)

Whodini, "Magic's Wand" (YSI link)

Whodini, "Rap Machine" (YSI link)

Oh my G-d, I think I'm having a rap attack! It's been too long since I did any hip-hop here. I could give a whole spiel about why this is and masculinity and women and my own disgust with what I was hearing, but that would be boring. I'll just say that I hope to return more to my roots with an emphasis on the early days of the genre, when it was still trying to find its voice amidst electro, disco and house. I'm not gonna lie, it feels so good to be back home.

I'm also not gonna lie at how rad I think the self-titled debut LP from Whodini is. Released in 1984 on Jive Records, it's classic electro-rap, all synths and drum machines and wordy raps, Whodini is everything I could ask for. The group consisted of vocalists Jalil Hutchins and Ecstasy (John Fletcher) plus DJ Drew Carter; they were one of the first rap groups to enjoy a good deal of popularity, breaking out of the one-hit wonder ghetto. Their sound, at least on this one, sounds like it's at the crossroads between rap and electro, brittle beats and synths, other times it has an r&b/rap mix, out in front of the new jack swing sound of the late 80s.

The classic Whodini song is "Magic's Wand," which was originally conceived as an advertisement for a popular NYC DJ Mr. Magic. If you're thinking that's the coolest part of the story behind this song, you're wrong. The producer is Mr. "Blinded Me With Science," Thomas Dolby. How cool is that? It's like an 80s dream, Anthony Michael Hall in a John Hughes movie wearing Z Cavaricci pants. Dolby turned out a synth heavy number with a big elastic bassline, some vocodered vocals, people shouting in the background, percussion and keys that sounds miles away from what you'd hear on the radio today. There's a similar template on the other tracks, love how much slower and stretched out these tracks sound, it sounds so much more dancefloor friendly than the bangers today. Check "The Haunted House of Rock" for a Grateful Dead reference! Yeah! Steal your face!

I'd definitely recommend picking up Funky Beat: The Best of Whodini, a good overview of their career which lasted more than a decade. This group helped define the genre before it became the global sound it is today, still sounds great all of these years later.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Blackbyrds - City Life

The Blackbyrds - City Life

The Blackbyrds, "Rock Creek Park" (YSI link)

The Blackbyrds, "Happy Music" (YSI link)

The Blackbyrds, "Flying High"
(YSI link)

Man, we've been a little bad lately and it's time to to stop that with some great music about being in the city, hanging out in the park, falling in love, being in love, all the good things. We're gonna get out ahead of the disco era, go to its funk roots today with a few tracks from The Blackbyrd's City Life LP. This group was formed by jazz trumpter Donald Byrd in 1973 and featured members Kevin Toney (related to Andrew, I hope), Allan Barnes, Barney Perry, Joseph Hall, Pericles Jacobs Jr. and Keith Killgo. It all began at Howard University in Washington D.C., the band would release 7 albums through 1980, with this one considered their finest.

As for the music, it's beautiful jazz-y funk music, not quite as filthy as say, a James Brown number, but just as danceable and grooving. You can definitely sense Byrd's influence, as the music has an improvisational feel on the longer numbers, complete with soloing. You even get some Ron Burgundy-esque flute solos that add to the much lighter, airier sound than you expect with the funk. I think you can hear a little bit of the transition from funk to the disco sound here, especially on "Flying High." The track features bursts of horns and and soaring strings, up in the sky rather coming at you from below like the best funk.

Things kick off with the classic "Rock Creek Park," a song you may think you've never heard but you have at some point. Like "Funky Drummer," it's become a foundational break in hip-hop, later being sampled by everyone from De La Soul, Nas to Ice Cube. Beyond that nerd stuff, this one is just a great song, and not just because of the quasi-sex breakdowns. With electric guitar, tons of percussion, the thing chugs along. "Happy Music" is my personal favorite, pure fucking bliss. Lots of great electric piano take this one over the top, along with these chika-chika guitar chord breakdowns that I love.

Since I love to end with some good uplifting (or downlifting) lyrics, I'd be remiss not to throw up some from "Happy Music":

Happy music makes me you feel good all the time
Happy music takes the troubles off your mind
Happy music makes your foot loose and fancy free
Happy music takes you where you want to be.

It sure does, doesn't it? Yeah! Happy music! Let's do more of this!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Laidback Luke - Essential Mix

Laidback Luke

Laidback Luke, BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix February 23, 2008
(YSI link) (Sendspace link) tracklisting in comments

Let's stay in the present and upload the most recent Essential Mix on Radio 1 featuring Laidback Luke. I've actually been meaning to drop a few tracks from this new wave of big-room house music coming out of Europe that has dominated in Ibiza. Laidback Luke is a Dutch producer, who has been around for while but only has taken off in the last year or two. Some of his biggest successes like "Get Dumb" have come in collaboration with members of The Swedish House Mafia - Steve Prydz, Axwell, Steve Angello and Sebastian Ingrosso. All of these names are essential, producer/DJs bringing that old funky Chicago house sound back with some electro and minimal thrown in.

This 2-hour mix is just awesome, awesome, awesome, like a night at Pacha without the Asian mafia or Jerseyites. It ranges from vocal house to electro to some techno, hell, there's even a trance-y euphoric vibe at moments. Listening to it, it's hard for me to believe that this is the overground in dance music; this set is so dynamic and sounds so great, nothing like the untz-untz stuff you have in your head. What I love most is the tempo changes, how he will drop out to just a vocal playing and slowly let the beat come back in and away we go once more. It's one of the best Essential Mixes I've heard in a while, wonderfully paced, a nice mix of current favorites, some Luke remixes and even some of his edits of classics like Daft Punk's "Teachers." I can't recommend this one more highly, especially for anyone who wants to get a sense of what clubland is like right now in Europe and the States.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Etienne Jaumet - Repeat Again After Me

Etienne Jaumet - Repeat Again After Me

Etienne Jaumet, "Repeat Again After Me"
(YSI link)

While y'all are out dancing and partying and drinking and kissing, I'm home, watching Revenge of the Nerds and trying to talk myself into buying the Marc Jacobs derby shoes from his Spring line (if you work for MJ and can get me discount, holler at a kid) Most importantly, I'm home getting back in the swing of things here at Pound for Pound. We got through this week, barely, hope you missed me.

Let's start back with a great new techno track out of Europe from newcomer Etienne Jaumet, "Repeat Again After Me." This is his first release and it's a doozy, this slow-building, kinda ominous, kinda acid-y techno track that stretches out to 13+ minutes. Add in some non-jazzy horns and you have yourself a really sick track.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Juno Soundtrack


Barry Louis Polisar, "All I Want Is You"
(YSI link)

Kimya Dawson, "Tire Swing" (YSI link)

The Moldy Peaches, "Anyone Else But You"
(YSI link)

Ugh, I feel like I still haven't recovered from Valentine's Day. I got to spend my Saturday night in the company of the married with kids on the way, the married without kids yet and the engaged. Logically, I followed up that by returning home and drunkenly reading emails from MC that I hadn't opened in months (for the record, I'm not married to JR, not down with implants). Normally, I would wallow and be sad, contemplating the fact that I will die alone. Ahh, but not today, my friends, not today. Today I want to post about one of those things that just makes me happy, that puts a smile on my face and gives me hope and makes me want to hold hands with a girl, the soundtrack to the movie Juno.

I'm sure that everyone and their moms has seen the movie about 16 year old Juno and her unexpected pregnancy. Typically, I was months behind on this one, but who cares? It's a good movie, like seriously made me happy and teary eyed and that's about all you can ask for from a movie. Add in 2 actors from Arrested Development and you got yourself a favorite.

The thing I loved most was the music in the movie; much like a Wes Anderson movie, it seemed to perfectly fit the movie's vibe and make scenes that much better. I found myself waiting until the end of the credits to see what songs I'd just heard, which might not sound like a lot, but consider the fact that I had to pee about 10 minutes in. Also like Anderson's soundtracks, this one specializes in catchy rock songs that may not have come across your radar, like Barry Louis Polisar's "All I Want To Do," plus a few tunes from more well-known artists like Pound for Pound favs Cat Power, the Velvet Underground and Buddy Holly. There's a perfect mix of sweetness and melancholy throughout, which obviously appeals to me.

The majority of the songs were written by Kimya Dawson of Moldy Peaches fame and those were pleasant surprises, had never really heard her music and kinda assumed I wouldn't. Ahh, never judge a book by its cover, or an artist by their genre. Her songs are lo-fi acoustic numbers that center on her oddball lyrics that have a darkness to them and slightly-straining voice that makes me happy. I know that this isn't the greatest review ever, but all I can say is that all I want to do is listen to this album right now, it makes me want to go steady with a girl, fall in love, walk around the Lower East Side, spend time with friends, laugh, cry. I can't recommend this album more highly, grab it for under $10. Let me end with some lyrics from "All I Want Is You" cos they make me happy:

If you were a wink, I'd be a nod
If you were a seed, well I'd be a pod.
If you were the floor, I'd wanna be the rug
And if you were a kiss, I know I'd be a hug

All I want is you, will you be my bride
Take me by the hand and stand by my side
All I want is you, will you stay with me?
Hold me in your arms and sway me like the sea.

I'm taking a little break from posting right now, as I have a job interview tomorrow and some articles due. Things should pick up again Thursday, hopefully everyone can wish me luck and think good thoughts at 4pm Wednesday.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Sticky: Help Wanted - Web Designer

This is long overdue, I feel like I have been threatening to make this site look good for a year now. Ahh, no looking back now, we're only looking forward. With that I'm hoping to find someone to redesign this website, make it look nice and snazzy and add some new features and generally help me through the process.

I am asking you, my dear readers, for recommendations. Do you do this for a living? Do you have your own site and have a great recommendation of the person who designed it for you? If so, please email me at when you have a moment, as I would love to hear from you. If you're a designer, please send some examples of your work and cost. If you're a blogger, let me know any info you can, like cost, time, reliability, etc.

Thanks for your help, excited to make this happen. I am going to leave this at the top for a few days, so make sure to check below for the latest music and party info. Yeah!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Roy Orbison - Only The Lonely

Roy Orbison 2

Roy Orbison, "Only The Lonely" (YSI link)

Roy Orbison, "Crying"
(YSI link)

Roy Orbison, "It's Over"
(YSI link)

Roy Orbison, "Heartache"
(YSI link)

Ugh, I had a terrible Valentine's Day, a lonely, sad one that just sucked. You know it's bad when you find yourself at the Duane Reade pharmacy at 9:30 picking up a prescription, ugh. Sometimes, you just have to accept that you are feeling down and it's always nice to know that there is so much music made just for those moments.

It seemed natural to focus our next post on one of the greatest at speaking to the broken-hearted, Mr. Roy Orbison. I first heard Orbison's music when I was probably 8 or 9 years old, can even remember the moment when I was made aware that this music was special music by my father. We were in the car back from a soccer tournament and an Orbison Greatest Hits tape was put in and my dad told me about the man in black with the greatest voice of all-time. I didn't like it at first, probably because it was so far from my first love of hip-hop, plus it was a recommendation from a parent. But, these songs wouldn't have made sense to me then anyway; I was too young to understand what this guy was singing about.

As my man sang, "Only the lonely know know why I cry, only the lonely." Indeed. At a certain point, this music makes sense to us all, as no one escapes unscathed. For sad music, though, it sounds so beautiful, majestic at times, it doesn't hide in minimalism and off-notes. Strings, backup vocals, an early rock/abilly sound slowed down, hints of doo-wop, fans of the Jens Lekman can hear one influence on his music. If you are discussing Orbison's music, there's one aspect that you have to mention, that you speak of in awe: that voice. Maybe the greatest to ever grace pop music, it can hit the high notes and go down low with authority. Listen to it on "Crying," it covers the entire vocal range in an almost operatic style and makes a nearly three minute rock song sound like so much more. There's not much to add to all of this, these songs above are some of the saddest you'll ever here, a reminder of the other side of all those great love songs. I'll end with the lyrics to "Crying," my favorite:

I was all right for a while, I could smile for a while
But I saw you last night you held my hand so tight
As you stopped to say hello
Oh, you wished me well, you couldn't tell
That I've been crying over you, crying over you
And you said, so long
Left me standing all alone
Alone and crying, crying, crying, crying
It's hard to understand but the touch of your hand
Can start me crying

I thought that I was over you
But it's true, so true
I love you even more than I did before
But darling, what can I do
For you don't love me and I'll always be
Crying over you, crying over you

Yes, now you're gone and from this moment on
I'll be crying, crying, crying, crying
Yeah, crying, crying over you

Whew. Try to top that. Thank you Roy for reminding us that it's okay for boys to cry.

I highly recommend buying the two disc The Essential Roy Orbison, which does a nice job of compiling the man's hits for a nice price. It can be a good way to get started and it allows you to get a comprehensive look at the man's career across labels. It isn't all sad songs, for the record, "Pretty Woman," "Dream Baby," etc., it's all essential.

Erotique Robotique Valentine's Disco PHILA, Are Your Friends Electric? SF, Stiletto SF and more

There's so many great parties tonight, I assume it's payback for how shitty yesterday was. Why oh why couldn't the Robotique boys thrown this party last night at my apartment? Whatever, everyone in Philly should head to Medusa Lounge (21st and Chestnut) for the Erotique Robotique Valentine's Day disco extravaganza. I mean, is there anything that makes me think of love more than a night of sweet, sweet disco music, dancing and women? I mean, that's life, people, that's what we all get up each day to have. Thanks to Mike Tee and Billy W, it'll all come together in the intimate basement. Fall in love again, with disco, with your girlfriend, your boyfriend, the city. Disco will save your life. No cover, 21+.

-Huge night in Philly. The Turnaround vs Immediate party at The Barbary (951 Frankford Ave) takes a little detour from its normal funk, soul and rock sounds, inviting Mr. Spank Rock, Naeem, to come through as guest DJ. You already know about this party, a combination of the two of the best parties the city has had, add a little a booty music and watch out.


-Not often that a Click. party doesn't hold top spot. Dave P is joined by Mixhell, a.k.a. Igor from Sepultura, who has been a fixture it seems like this week on the East Coast. The reviews have been good, and you know you can count on this party to always be rad. $1 PBRs and $3 well drinks before midnight, $2 PBRs all night. $5 admission, 21+.


-Always good to have the LA Riots back in NYC, they seem to have found a home at the Robot Rock party at Le Royale (21 7th Ave South @ Leroy) I've said it before, one of the best new bands anywhere, you're not gonna want to pass up the chance to say you saw them before they have to play the Bowery and Terminal 5. Lazaro Casanova is also in from LA to spin with Dimitry!!!, Alex English and Marc-Alan Grey, should be a great night of indie and indie dance and lots more. Email to for free admission, $10 otherwise. Doors at 10pm, 21+.

-It's a bit of an LA invasion tonight, as Dirty Dave is in town as special guest at the Ruff Club at The Annex (152 Orchard St) Not much to add to this one, Dave is definitely worth checking out, a DJ who deserves more recognition. The residents are well-known and adored - Denny Le Nimh, Spencer Product, 24Court and Micprobes. Down in the basement, Nicholas Kratochvil, Jake Sinclair and Danzie will spin the tunes you know and love to a packed house.

-Ahh, a party after my own heart in Williamsburg, Fuck Love Let's Dance. It looks like another fun night at Hugs (108 N. 6th St), as Kill The Noise, AC Slater, Code-D, Lismore and Bradley D will all perform tonight to help you remember what's really important in life, finding a dancemate, not a soulmate. No cover, 21+.

-Yeah! It's Le Freak time, which means the week is over and the weekend has begun and this is where you need to be, D.C., at Napoleon (1847 Columbia Rd) with DJ Will Eastman. I know that the last Blisspop was a huge success, so I expect the momentum will keep going to this weekend. Half-priced champagne from 9-11, free Jamesons from 12-1am, great music from opening to close. Do this one, nation's capital!

-Out in Minneapolis, it's the seventh edition of the Honeymoon party in the VIP Room at First Avenue (701 First Avenue N). Presented by the Moon Goons, this one's got Ian Orth and XXNaughtywood performing, XXNaughtywood sounds especially good with its italo/disco sound. All of the Moon Goons will be on hand to spin. Don't forget there's a theme each month for dressing up purposes; this time, it's MOMS, so dress accordingly. $3, free with the purchase of a nice $10 t-shirt, 18+.

-Holy shit, what a night in San Francisco, hopefully my future home. Lots of great choices, but there's one question to ask yourself: Are Your Friends Electric? Blasthaus and Lights Down Low are coming together tonight to throw one of the raddest parties I've seen in a minute, with live performance by the amazing Glass Candy, plus a DJ set by the French kingpin Joakim, whose DJ set could include house, experimental stuff, a little jazz, who knows? Think that's it? Sorry, there's more. NYC's Foreign Islands are in town and they will spin a guest set, joining local dons Sleazemore and Honey Soundsystem for what should be an amazing night that touches on all of the parts of the dance music world. $15 tickets at the door, 9pm-3am, 21+.

-Ugh, it's hard to choose against any party dedicated to one of the greatest movies ever, The Warriors. You can't go wrong checking out the Stiletto: The Warriors Theme Party at Asia SF (201 9th St) where Miss Toats and White Girl Lust will have all of the various gangs dancing their asses off. There's also a fashion show, a costume contest and Red Bull specials. $8,,10pm-3am, San Fran, come out to play!

-Finally, there's Blow Up SF at the Rickshaw Stop (155 Fell) where the Frisco Disco guys, Jeffrey Paradise and Richie Panic, headline. You know the craziness they bring every Saturday night, they are joined by sometime guest Vin Sol, who will add a little hip-hop and Bmore club to the proceedings. There's also a live performace by Public, plus a DJ set by LXNDR from the Dot Club party at Pink. Should be a blast, 18+, 10pm-2am.

-LA Warehouse party! MeanRed Productions! Big Fun Meets Sudden Death! One of NYC's best parties, Big Fun with Rocktakon and Unemployed Lloyd, heads out to La La Land to battle the Sudden Deathers, Blu Jemz, DJ Pubes, Mike B, Staccato and Cosmic Kids. I mean, there's too many good names involved in this one for this to not be rad. The warehouse is located at 1049 E. 32nd St, check the map here. RSVP to, $10 cover, 21+.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Musebox Monthly NYC,

Okay, I really don't have much to say on this shitty holiday, so I'm going to say very little beyond the details. I am super excited about the party at 205 Club (205 Chrystie) tonight, the return of the Musebox Monthly party. My wonderful roomie put this one together and she has done an amazing job. Live performance by Tippy, DJ sets by JD Samson, John Selway and Dances With White Girls, giveaways from Love Brigade, Vitamin Water, Lifestyle condoms and the big ticket of the night, Babeland gift certificates! It should be a really rad night, a great way to have dance-y good time that won't give you a chance to be lonely or depressed. As the flier RSVP to to get in and enjoy all of this.

-Great night in the LES, check these out before or after Musebox. Lewd party, Happy Ending (302 Broome St), rekLES and seanMFNroberts, indiedancelectrockfunk all night. Saaga Vodka and Bass Ale open bar from 11-12, hosted by Antwan and Julius O.


-Hey Lover party at Home Sweet Home (131 Chrystie St) with Sweatshop Labor dudes doing a 90s R&B set, plus a set by guest DJs Around The Way Girls, Sure Shot and Radio Rose. This one also serves as a CD release party for the Girls, free CDs for those attending. There's also a make-out contest sponsored by Yume, g-d knows how that gets the judged, the Shango rum open bar from 10:30-11:30 I'm sure will help make it happen at least. No cover, 21+. Great flier, btw.

-Valentine's for the rock kids, Rockit! party at Fat Baby (112 Rivington), DJs Brad Walsh, Twig the Wonderkid, VDRK, DJ Bobbypanda and Electrochris.


-For the disco and house kids, there's Tuned Up at Darkroom (165 Ludlow St) which thankfully makes no reference to the holiday. Andy Pry, great music, no cover, starts at 11pm.

-Degenerates at Hiro Ballroom Moby, Drop The Lime and Mixhell, a.k.a. Igor from Sepultura. Advanced tickets are gone at the site, probably $10 at the door, 21+.

-Mo Money, No Problems in Philly with Stephen Bloodbath and Jaysson from Plastic Little at Silk City (425 Spring Garden St) No cover, 21+.

-Paper Street Valentine's Day party, Flavor of Love, at Walnut Room (1709 Walnut St) DJ Deejay will spin, 80s, hip-hop, party stuff, complimentary Absolut 100 drinks, $3 PBRs and Lionheads. No cover, 21+.



-Love Hussy party in Atlanta at 5 Spot (1123 Eucli Ave), presented by Jeff Myers, Judi Chicago, Treasure Fingers, Drew Van Atten, Chuck Chillout, Jazspa, rad dance party, rad flier. $5 before 11, 18+.

-Pretty In Pink party at the Sidecar Lounge (5100 Classen Cir) in Oklahoma City with DJs Rad and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Wear pink tonight, make love, dance and be happy. No cover, 21+, doors at 10pm.

-Dance Robots Dance cover Norman, OK tonight as well, as Opolis Dance Party takes over The Opolis (113 N. Crawford) B. and Dylan Mackey, all ages, $3, 10pm-2am.

-Valentine's at Debonair Social Club (1575 N. Milwaukee Ave) with Dark Wave Disco and special guests White Hot Knife and Perfect Kiss. No cover, 21+.

-Mark Rodriguez's Heist Party moves to Long Beach and sets up at Cave 49 (49 S. Pine Ave) Room 1: The Adorables, Gina Turner, Dan-O, DJ Score, DJ Spy vs. Spy, Bul!m!atron and DJ Comrade Stephen. Room 2: Erick Neutron, Jesse Bot and new LA resident and Dance Robots, Dancer Joshua Distance. 18+, doors at 9pm.

-Club Pop in Seattle at Chop Suey (1325 E. Madison St) with residents Colby B and Glitterpants, special guest Sam Rousso Sound System of the Ruff Gemz party. $5 before 11pm, $10 after, 21+.

-I promise to not be so curt and lame tmrw night. Sorry.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Robotic Valentine's Underwear Party OKC, Distortion Disko DENVER and more

I fear discussing tomorrow and the holiday associated with it, but thanks to the Dance Robots, Dance DJs, I can the holiday as it should be - sleazy and half-naked. They're throwing a Valentine's Underwear party at their Robotic Wednesday weekly in Oklahoma City and I couldn't be happier. Fuck Hallmark and flowers and feeling lonely; head to the Electro Lounge (5929 N. May Ave) and dance and drink and get semi-naked and be happy at one of the best parties anywhere. The DRD crew will provide the perfect filthy soundtrack to the night, you have nothing to lose but your clothing. In your underwear, no cover, in your complete clothing, $2. Having seen pics of last year's edition, it's clear that Oklahoma City is ready to go crazy. Doors at 10pm, 21+.

-Lots of fun stuff in Philly, let's start off with this concert/dance party at Silk City (4th and Spring Garden) The Apes headline, bringing their organ-y rock sound to the Northern Liberties spot. Philly's own GANG will play as well, don't miss their dance-rock music, a local band that should get bigger. Rounding it out, The Hurrah DJs, Shawn Ryan and Chris Rogy, will probably spin music from similar genres, indie, indie dance, post-punk, if you haven't been to their monthly, here's a great chance to get a little dose. $5 admission, doors at 9pm, 21+.

-Not too far away, down in Fishtown, the venerable Crescendolls party takes over the Barbary (951 Frankford Ave) JHN RDN, Ian St.Laurent and Gregg Foreman will bring a little extra love tonight, not sure if that means some love songs in the midst of the dance and soul classics, but it's worth showing up to find out. They're showing their love up front to you, with free mixed drinks and PBRs until 11pm. No cover, 21+.


-If you are in Center City, check out the Exploit party at Sal's (200 S. 12th St) Tonight's edition features Taperecorder as guest DJ and he will be spinning a tech-house set. It's definitely not a sound that you get to hear much, definitely recommended. He joins the ladies of Exploit!, or at least two of them, Jenn Louie and Deann Dylema, for a night dedicated to electronic music. No cover here either, 21+.

-Not a whole lot going on in NYC, which makes it a good night to check out two of my favorite parties downtown. First, there's the High Voltage party at The Annex (152 Orchard St), which keeps rolling along, getting more popular and bigger each week. Tonight, residents Dimitry!!! and Prince Terrence are joined by DJ Fancy of Fannypack fame for what should be a fun night that has absolutely nothing to do with Valentine's Day. Yeah! Zygo open bar from 11pm until its gone, RSVP at the site to get in for free and to see all of the young, beautiful people who will be in attendance. Doors at 10pm, 21+.

-You should also hit up Happy Ending (302 Broome St) for the Hopchank/Ninja Sonik party, which goes down every other Wednesday. DJs Reverend McFly, Morsy and Teenwolf throw one of the best parties at one of my favorite spots, great music, rap, rock, some dance, good crowd, fun times. Highly recommended, for real. No cover, 21+.


-It's Syndicate Wednesdays at Debonair Social Club (1575 N. Milwaukee Ave) in Chicago, don't think I've mentioned this party before. It looks like they bring in a few new DJs every week with an emphasis on mash-ups, which I assume just means mashing up genres like electro and house. Tonight's a good night to check this out, as Trancid of Dark Wave Disco, Jesse James and Onepunch get behind the decks. No cover, $6 Effen vodka cocktails, doors at 9pm, 21+.

-Late addition, never hear much going on in Denver, always nice to be able to hype a party and a new city. The Distortion Disko looks like a great opener, a party dedicated to electro, new wave, funk and Britpop, with a focus on providing a place for people to freak out and act crazy every Wednesday at the Hi-Dive (7 South Broadway). Tonight's a great night to check it out, as Soviet Panda from Too Much Love is the special guest, really great choice for this night, Panda should kill it. $3 cover after 10pm, $3 Stoli drinks, 21+.

-Out in LA, this looks to be a rad Awesometown at The Short Stop (1455 W. Sunset Blvd) with Greg from Acid Girls, Dirty Dave and Shaun Slaughter coming through to destroy the dancefloor and hold it down while Anne Lee and Shadowscene take over Japan. $3 Dewars drinks all night, no cover, 21+.

-The weekly Wednesday night Avenue party in Riverside at Trilussa Nightclub (3737 Main St) does a birthday edition tonight with some of the best young local DJs Skeet Skeet, Luv Tek, Hyphy Crunk, Billy Noorlag, Jimmy Boy and Rec One. However, the best reason to come through is to catch the last LA appearance (for now) by Vancouver's My! Gay! Husband! 2 rooms, 18+, send a message with your first and last name to their myspace page to get on the $5 reduced admission, then go have fun.

Goldfrapp - A&E


Goldfrapp, "A&E" (YSI link)

Goldfrapp, "A&E (Hercules and Love Affair remix)"
(YSI link)

It's been too long since we've heard from Goldfrapp, one of my favorites groups sitting on the dance and pop border. What better way to brighten up this crappy, snowy day than with their newest single, "A&E"? The original version is definitely not what I expected to hear; it's pretty far from the glam electro sound that they have defined for the past few years. Instead, you hear a deep bass cello, lilting piano and harps, setting the mood nicely for Alison Goldfrapp to shine. Her voice is amazing, especially love when it goes up a little higher during the refrain. The closest comparsion that comes to mind here is Tracey Thorn, the more somber tone, the strings and the dazzling voice. You know how much I liked Thorn's LP, really looking forward to seeing what Goldfrapp have come up with for a long player.

It's hard to believe, but I was way more excited for the Hercules and Love Affair remix. The DFA group have had a few of their own releases, but this is the first remix that I know of. Andy Butler doesn't disappoint on this one, as he's taken the original and taken it into leftfield. Butler's built this one out of a lot of percussion and drums, a bit of Alison Goldfrapp's vocals, a sampled children's choir, chiming bells and a wicked little bassline. It has a shuffling, halting feel, which I love, but I'm not sure that everyone can get behind. For me, it sounds like nothing else I've heard recently, something that touches on deep house, tribal, maybe even a little new rave, but without really subscribing to any of those genres. Give it a listen, let us know what you think.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Benga - Essential Mix

Benga 2

Benga, BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix February 2, 2008 (YSI link) (Sendspace link) tracklisting in comments

We haven't done a post on dubstep or the Radio One Essential Mix show in awhile, so why not kill two birds with one stone? Pete Tong's program invited one of the genre's stars, Benga, to come through and put together a 2-hour mix. It's a pretty big symbolic deal, as it's only the second time that the show has featured a dubstep producer/DJ, the first being Skream last year. It's a fitting choice, as Benga owned 2007, dropping the biggest tune, "Night," and his 2008 should be massive as well, with an LP due at some point.

The mix is heavy on Benga's own tunes, along with a healthy dose of Skream and his "Night" collaborator Coki. There's a part of me that would have liked to have heard some new names on this mix, some up and comers on the scene as opposed to the established stars. But, when the mix sounds this good, it's hard to complain. Plus, on further thought, Benga has made this an exploration of his sound and I really like this take on a long mix, like Ricardo Villalobos did on his Fabric mix.

Monday, February 11, 2008

El Coco - Cocomotion

Quito Graf 02

Quito, Ecuador mural, courtesy of J H-B

El Coco, "Cocomotion (Parts I & II)" (YSI link) 320

El Coco, "We Call It Disco" (YSI link) 320

El Coco, "Love To The World" (YSI link) 320

I spent yesterday at an orientation for the 826NYC group, a prerequisite to become an after-school tutor. Yes, that's right, Pound for Pound is a step closer to having a real day-to-day impact on the kids. Not just on an mp3 basis, but in a real life, real talk way. I will have free rein to teach them the evil of suburbs, the importance of universal health care, the beauty of boobs and to love themselves and each other (i.e. to be opposite of me) I will be able to create a new generation for the Pound for Pound massive, extending our reach and our power.

Most of all, I want to teach them about the power of disco to save their lives. With that in mind, let's continue to spread the word with some more classic 70s magic, a few tracks from El Coco's Cocomotion LP. El Coco was ostensibly a vehicle for the producers Michael Lewis and Laurin Rinder, who would make write the music, play it and find the vocalist to finish it off. They would make a handful of hits, including the massive 2 part, 10 minute+ "Cocomotion." This one's more of a slow-burner, a slinky kinda number that grooves throughout. It's a prototypical classic sound, with strings and horns and even a flute lead the way. However, there's definitely a different sensibility at work here, perhaps informed by Rinder's jazz training. While there is a steady pulse throughout, it never goes all out, always feeling a bit laid-back. Even the vocals have a whispery quality, they're quite far from diva-level.

"We Call It Disco"
is a lot shorter but maybe even sweeter, as great organ and synth chords help this one to such great heights. The vocals are front and center here as well, always love to hear some proud lyrics about disco and the club. Finally, "Love To The World" the B side to the Cocomotion 12", is as uplifting as the title suggests, a strings-heavy track that sits between the previous two songs. It has a few peaks and subsequent quieter periods. The whole album is excellent, a great example of how the disco sound could create

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Lose Your Shit BK, Modular & People Don't Dance No More BK, Mind Control PHILA and more


Tonight is real quality, a big Saturday night. Meanred Productions is setting the bar super high with the Lose Your Shit party at 12Turns13 (172 Classon @ Myrtle) in Bed-Stuy. What makes it so rad? Rub-n-Tug, motherfuckers, Rub-n-Tug. The disco-funk-weirdo DJs are headlining, going back to their loft roots and you won't want to miss this, possibly the best DJs you'll hear all year. Also in the building are DJs Sujinho, Qool DJ Marv and $mall ¢hange, should be a great mix of rap, baile funk, noise, all over the map. Seriously, this is the night you've been waiting for, a night away from the clubs with some of the best DJs in the city, no photographers, no b.s. You can grab an advanced ticket or pay at the door, $10. Doors at 10pm, I think it's BYO, FYI. Yeah! Lose your shit Brooklyn!

-If you like something a little more structured, you need to hit up Studio B (259 Banker St) tonight, as Modular and the People Don't Dance No More party have combined forces to bring Joakim and his Ectoplasmic Band to Greenpoint to play live. I'm not sure if this is the first NYC show by this group, but it's definitely a rare opportunity to catch one of dance music's most interesting artists and his new project. Sounds great but there's still a lot more going on, as Juan Maclean, Andy Butler of Hercules and Love Affair and Robot Blair will spin. Don't miss Butler, just a word to the wise. Grab $10 advanced tickets or pay $15 at the door. Doors at 10pm, 21+.


-If you want something a little smaller or want to get a jump on Valentine's Day, hit up Royal Oak (594 Union Ave) tonight for the Eat Your Heart Out Valentine Bash with DJ Tiny Pants and DJ Weisted. Here's your chance to celebrate with your honey and get drunk and stupid before the nice dinner in a few days, or else to meet your future Valentine. Or you can just go out and have fun, stop by before or after Studio B, hang out and ignore the corporate holiday. Either way, the DJs will spin lots of great dance tunes and cheesy pop and make it a necessary stop in your Williamsburg night. No cover, 21+.

-I just caught this one at the last second, really glad I did, as the Hip Replacement party should be everyone's favorite party in Philly. Disco will save your life and Mike Tee, Billy W. and Jhan Olo can make that happen once a month. Tonight's party looks extra rad, as they've brought in special guest Jeremy Campbell, a.k.a. Tropical Jeremy, to make the night cosmic. Dude will blow your mind with cosmic and italo tonight, a great follow-up to the set he did at Paradise a few years ago. Honestly, I hope that everyone in Philly gets behind this night, great stuff. No cover, 21+.

-Always excited to see the Pi Lam guys throwing a party, they've held some rad events at their house (3914 Spruce St) in the past year. They've got a special one tonight, the Mind Control party, a night dedicated to dubstep, grime and bass anthems. They've chosen the right DJs, bringing down Star Eyes of NYC's Trouble & Bass and bringing in hometown heroes Starkey and Dev79 to rattle your heads with sub-bass. I really recommend everyone in Philly come through to check out Star Eyes, she's excellent, the music tonight should be extra good in a house party setting. Doors at 11pm, that's the only info I have.

-If you don't want to cross the river or want something a little dancier, hit up Medusa's (21st and Chestnut) for the monthly Philadelphyinz gathering. APT One and Skinny Friedman are getting bigger and bigger, makes this party in the dark basement spot all the cooler. You know the deal here, read the flier for a way radder description of the musical content. One of the best parties in Philly, second Saturday of the month, no cover, 21+.

-Sadly, I feel like I have no clue about what goes down in Baltimore. It's nice to be able to put something up from the Charm City, this Monkey Hustle party at The Depot (1728 N. Charles) looks good. Every 2nd Saturday of the month, Mikie Love and guests spin, "playing jump up, get down, electronic sexy music". Tonight, Love's joined by Stretch, Famous Amos, Steve Newsense, Pixelbombs, Atari Krunk and Philly's Steven Bloodbath. No cover, cheap drinks early, doors at 9, goes til 2am, late night party at the Copycat Building to follow late night.


-Tulsa, it's a Dance Robots, Dance Invasion tonight! Don't be scared, though. B. Kylie and Dyaln Mackey come in peace, they wish only to spread great dance music and good vibes. Head to the Soundpony (409 N. Main St) for a guaranteed rad Saturday night. Doors at 10pm, 21+, I don't think there's a cover, but I can't guarantee that.

-Late Update: Pase Rock has also been added, taking it all up a notch. Hmm, the French band Data seems to be awfully popular in LA tonight. Not sure if the band is playing at both parties or if there's some confusion, but whatever, you can't go wrong at either event. Anne Lee and Shadowscene present the Blow Up LA Winter Formal tonight, with Data headlining, Richie Panic of Frisco Disco, Sleazy V and Bul!m!atron spinning at a downtown warehouse (4301 Valley Blvd) RSVP to to get in for $5 before 11, $10 after that. There's $2 vodka monsters from 10-12, 18+, party goes til 4am.

-Iheartcomix, Viva La Rock and XLR8R are bringing you Mixhell tonight at The Echo (5514 Sunset Blvd) Mixhell is actually Iggor Cavalera, the drummer from Sepultura, this is his DJ project. He says that he blends electro, discopunk, old school hip-hop, rock and electronic stuff, while using an MPC sampler to add the right amount of beats to the mix. Data is also scheduled to play, plus My! Gay! Husband! spins with Franki Chan and Paparazzi. Another big night for this party, one of the best around. $12 advanced ticket, 18+.

-While Mr. Panic is blowing up in LA, Jefrodisiac holds down the weekly Frisco Disco party at The Transfer tonight. He's brought in the guys from the Missing Toof blog to keep him company and help keep the raucous, raging atmosphere at this one. I'm sure you've been to this one, no reason to stop now. Doors at 10pm, 21+.