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SNBRN

SNBRN’s SoCal Vibes Bring “Sunset House” To The Mid-West

SNBRN
“Feel the Bern” has a whole new meaning (totally unrelated to progressive politics) with newcomer on the scene, SNBRN. The Ultra Records artist is in the midst of a North American tour, stopping at two hot spots on Prime Social turf this spring. Pack extra aloe, because this April’s gonna hurt so good.

Laguna Beach all grown up is what I consider the effortlessly electronic, SoCal sound of Kevin Chapman better known as SNBRN. He’s released several singles, all garnering attention for different reasons. “Raindrops” has nuances of nu disco folded into the melodic musings of singer Kerli on the track. SNBRN has branded this very sound as “Sunset House”, a kind of house music that is the pre-gaming soundtrack to a night out and perhaps set on the California Coast. Friends, music, sun setting in the background…it has picturesque appeal and is delightfully light and fun yet feels indulgent.

The Los Angeles native is also known for his playful remixes of “Sexual Healing” by Marvin Gaye and “21 Questions” by 50 Cent. SNBRN’s twist on hip hop and r&b hits takes the gangsta edge off while adding mass playability (similar to drinkability, for all you Bud Light fans…but not quite as watered down). There’s a nostalgic quality to his classic house interpretations of these chart toppers that I think is refreshing and easy to listen to for hours on end. SNBRN’s most recent release, “Gangsta Walk”, is a salute to late 70s funk mixed with slow-burning builds and lyrics courtesy of Nate Dogg.

After making pit stops playing for giant crowds at Holy Ship and Ultra, SNBRN will ease his way to the Mid-West for shows on 3/5 in Madison [tickets here], 4/29 in Cincinnati [tickets here], and 4/30 in Columbus [tickets here]. With music perfect for sipping on all night at either venue, SNBRN and guest Speaker of the House are guaranteed to lay tracks that will do a significant amount of (sun) damage.

SNBRN

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SNBRN_DAHLIA

djmustard

Xtreme Spring Break Preview: DJ Mustard

djmustard

Mustard goes with every big artist out there, from raunchy rappers to collabs with electronic names like DJ Snake and Cashmere Cat. If you’re slightly confused- and admittedly hungry- this isn’t your classic, beloved condiment.

DJ Mustard, whose name is actually Dijon believe it or not, is known not only for his “mustard on the beat, ho” tagline but also for his insane ability to take virtually every song and remix out now to straight murdered it status. He plays on a ton of “ratchet music” type tracks range from the 2011 “Rack City Chick” homage to, um, professional dancers, to some crazy club bangers he managed to mix while touring with Skrillex last fall.

Mustard is quickly becoming a must-add to any blank track. His minimalistic, but catchy, bass lines feel inviting and never too cheesy. They’re upbeat with a moderate bpm and unassuming hooks, meaning they’re easy plays in any club-like setting or for simply chilling with friends.

The catchy moniker coupled with his sheer talent and omnipresence across multiple music genres makes DJ Mustard the perfect addition to PSG’s Xtreme Spring Break trip this March. The sexy setting of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico is a backdrop for beats incomparable to any stateside experience. With a lineup including Marshmello, Destructo, Louis The Child, and NGHTMRE, the only thing missing from your Spring Break trip is a proverbial neon trucker hat (and possibly a beer bong).

Learn more about Xtreme Spring Break in Puerto Vallarta here

 

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#CNL2016: Get To Know Jake Owen

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This Florida-born, RCA Nashville signed singer offers much more than a Barefoot Blue Jean Night. His talent, alarmingly good looks, and constant output of hits makes this 10-year country music veteran a mainstay in the mainstream movement of 21st Century Country.

Part pop, part country, and all Southern charm, Jake Owen actually picked up guitar by accident while recovering from reconstructive surgery after a wakeboarding accident. From there, the rest was basically history (and, let’s get real, a ton of hard work). The 34-year-old often writes songs for blasting and having a good time to, and for that we thank him, along with several successful ballads giving every flannel-wearing fan all the feels.

Two-thousand and fifteen brought the release of his fifth studio album, but 2016 is looking to be a larger than life year. Next month, he drops the second single off that album- “Real Life”- in addition to playing at Country Night Lights in September amongst another huge headliner, Brett Eldredge, and others soon to be announced.

Jake Owen

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View some of this headliner’s greatest hits then, using the hashtag #CNL2016, tweet @cntrynghtlghts with who else YOU want to add to this year’s lineup!

Get your Country Night Lights 2016 tickets here

jakeowen

BrettEldredge

#CNL2016: Get To Know Brett Eldredge

BrettEldredge

When I’m not drooling over DJ’s, my guilty pleasure of soulful and sexy country musicians comes out from the closet (along with a pair of denim cut-offs and my hometown southern drawl). Picture an atmosphere as energetic and free-wheeling as #FEST but add a little twang and you’ve got Country Night Lights. If I only learned one thing in my formative years living in a small West Virginia town, it’s country kids know how to have a damn good time.

With instant attention from Rolling Stone and Billboard online, #CNL2016 looks like it will send a shiver down your saddle and a shot of moonshine straight into your bloodstream (I highly recommend George Washington’s original recipe, only for sipping). Let’s keep it Country 101 with an introduction to headliner Brett Eldredge, a three-time chart topper who is more mainstream pop than Merle Haggard.

The 29-year-old Illinois born artist was recently nominated for Male Vocalist of the Year by the Academy of Country Music while also revealing a new unnamed single that will be out early next month. With so-catchy-it-kills melodies and chart topping tracks like “Lose My Mind” and “Mean To Me”, the Country Night Lights headliner and Atlantic Records artist seems to be having his best year ever. His brand is a blend of soulful sound with lyrics laced of a classic country POV and an Abercrombie & Fitch model appeal…like a polished Marlboro man. This is 21st-Century Country, and it’s highly contagious.

Preview what you’ll see in September with some of Brett’s bests below, then head over to www.countrynightlights.com for an array of ticket options (GA, VIP, camping, and RV passes).

Use the hashtag #CNL2016 to tweet @cntrynghtlghts who else you want to see on this year’s lineup!

Brett Eldredge

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Country Night Lights

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hardwell

Hardwell Remixes To Hold You Down Til February

hardwell

If your love for intricate laser shows and heart-happy house music is so strong you think you may burst before Hardwell’s shows in Pittsburgh and Columbus (Feb. 27 and Feb. 28), here are some remixes by the Revealed Recordings label head to keep you contained:

Quintino – Scorpion (Hardwell Edit)
This artist has been on every electronic music lover’s radar for awhile now; having Hardwell add his touch to the fellow Dutch-born DJ is an electro house equation you need to hear.

Hardwell – Spaceman (Carnage Festival Trap Remix)
Hear “Spaceman” as you’ve never heard it before with a house-turned-trap remix by the delightfully dirty DJ Carnage. It’s got that rolling 808 bass and constant, tight drum kick that keeps the tempo totally dance-friendly just a little more chill than thrill.

Armin van Buuren – Ping Pong (Hardwell Remix)
If you’re having heart palpatations just thinking about the Dutch DJ, maybe save this song for last (and get the shock pads ready). Hardwell’s remix of this trippy, quick-hitting track makes it a progressive house hit like no other. I love his addition of atmospheric effects and heavy reverb.

Hardwell x Matthew Koma – Dare You (Cash Cash Remix)
This peppy, electro pop remix by Cash Cash takes Hartwell’s uplifting house track even higher with an anthemic, mainstream feel that can fill a room (as well as many a Spotify playlists).

Tickets are available now for both stops on Hardwell’s North American Bus Tour (click here for 31st Street Studios, click here for The Bluestone). Don’t miss your chance to see him; tickets are selling quickly! Support from Thomas Newson and Kill The Buzz.

Hardwell

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soundengineerboard

New Year, New Rappers: Three Artists to Add to Your Playlist

soundengineerboard

With the dawn of a new year comes feelings of aspiration and revelation. You’re ready to undo all the damage of the previous 365 1/4 days and begin with a solid start… Over-priced gym membership? Check. Kicking your pack-a-day cancer stick habit? Check. But what New Years resolution could you and should you actually keep (let’s face it, six-pack abs are totally overrated)? Upping your street cred with a fresh playlist chocked full of new rap artists. Here are three worth an immediate add:

Young Thug
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The 24-year-old was named one of Complex Magazine's "25 New Rappers To Watch Out For" in 2013... his buzz in 2015 led him to release a full-on swarm of cameos and catchy singles. While I first noticed him on Jamie XX's playfully soulful reggaetronic "I Know There's Gonna Be (Good Times), Young Thug was clearly meant for infiltrating the rap game with follow-up songs like "Check" and "Best Friend".

His flow, which ranges from melodic to- quite honestly-indecipherable, allows him to float through verses like a butterfly but then, as the hook builds momentum and bass, he stings like a bee. The latest release by this Hotlanta-born artist is Barter 6, an album which I think finally starts to show Thug in his most true self. Although some vocals are very reminiscent of Little Wayne-one of the rapper's biggest influences-in all their unarticulated glory, tracks like "Halftime" showcase his playful, free spirited style. The artist seems to have no sense of rules, syncopating rhymes or completely going off the beat only to come back hitting harder than Muhammad Ali.

Listen to Young Thug Barter 6 here

Kevin Gates
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Gates' honesty is, oddly enough, something that makes his tracks so unique as he continues strong into 2016 with the release of his latest album "Islah". While recent chart toppers like "Really Really" and "2 Phones" are more or less classic thug anthems, there's something refreshing about the rapper's approach on hard times.

The 27-year-old Louisiana native touches on everything from depression to "baby mama drama" on his mid-2013 album, "Stranger Than Fiction". His feels are real, and they show brilliantly with melodic musings like "Satellite". Coming from an artist that claims music is his favorite vice, I strongly urge to cop his habit and continue to hit replay.

Listen to Kevin Gates Islah here

DeJ Loaf
Dej-Loaf
Laying tracks with heavy hitters in the game like Big Sean and Future, DeJ Loaf is like the Hilary Clinton (or Carly Fiorina, party preference depending) of rapping. She can quite clearly hang with the big guns while also branding herself from style to swagger, sans promising presidential pantsuit but add sporty chic and skills to match.

Her sound, high-pitched and youthful, is met with confidence on tracks like "Back Up" while the artist shows a softer side on "Hey There" singing "I love you, I love you, I feel it all in my stomach". She's versatile and consistent yet also surprising- innocent looks with a dirty mouth suitable for an Orbit chewing gum commercial (listen to "Shawty" ft. Young Thug for a gritty-good taste).

Listen to DeJ Loaf ft. Big Sean "Back Up" here

 

 

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littlebabyangelgenevieve

The Enigmatic Artist You Need To Know Now

littlebabyangelgenevieve

Not much is known about the LuckyMe signed singer other than his Montreal roots and haunting as hell tracks “@cartier” and “Genevieve”. Littlebabyangel’s personna seems to align with that of a modern-day Marilyn Manson, if Manson took the electronic route for re-branding purposes. The artist’s Instagram page eerily emits the same mysterious vibe as his music while providing no actual information as to who, what, when, where, and why.

The self-titled “Dark Daddi” brings something totally different to the music scene, with rap-like lyrics ridden by a pulsating, aggressive bassline. The lo-fi, slightly static quality of his tracks and out-of-the-box sound bites are categorically experimental; however, the constant driving drum kick feels like you may have the spins…in a “let’s do this again” kind of way.

Littlebabyangel’s two-minute teasers are guaranteed to leave listeners craving more. The overall appeal is not just in his aggressive, impulsive, and slightly sexual sound..it’s also in what’s seen. His website is a live, layered art installation, a shock to all senses with components of video and audio atop of provocative tumblr images and accompanying prose. Watch here.

 

Follow Littlebabyangel on SoundCloud here

 

atrak

A-Trak’s Killer Return to Columbus

atrak

The crowd on Saturday was a mix of die-hard A-Trak fans (one I talked to traveled from Indiana to see the Scratchmaster himself) and young professionals hot off their weekly business bender of 9 to 5 shifts. Whether there for the music, the madness, the mocktails, or all of the above, they were all there at Sway and ready to see the place burn down in proverbial flames from the heat anticipated off smoldering spins, scratches, and samples.

At midnight, as if the sea of people was transformed bibbity-bobbity-boo style courtesy of Cinderella’s fairy godmother and a trio of talking mice- #squadgoals- the vibe immediately went from typical Saturday night to totally turnt as A-Trak appeared a la Prince Charming. The intimate space of Sway felt more sophisticated and culturally ahead of the curve of its High Street competitors, as if it was the Royal Ball and those not in attendence were in for some major FOMO.

The Canadian born DJ is known for his flexible sets and intuitive mixes based on the crowd’s reactions… this night was no different and perhaps one of the highlights. His ability to switch from old school hip-hop to a hard dub step mix of Martin Solveig’s “+1” then back to a Top 40 rap banger satiated the ear-candy cravings of all involved. He transitioned from song to song organically and in the moment. An overall A-grade night out can be completely created off an effortless atmosphere alone in which each song played is “your” song…. A-Trak did just that.

He began with a scratch and bass-heavy track followed by a series of phenomenal drops of which the beat would build and held onto just long enough to keep the crowd on their toes (and anxiously awaiting to press the button to record their Snap Chat videos). “Place On Earth”, by the artist and Zoofunktion, began with its peppy piano-rich house sound but was then masterfully mixed to further funkify the synths and repetitive kick bass. It went from a big, bright anthem to a moombah tribute…but wait, it got even better. From there he spun it into Rihanna’s “Bitch Better Have My Money” for one of the most raucous moments of the night.

While cell phones were held high and inhibitions on the low, the DJ then went into a series of newer rap chart toppers like Rae Sremmurd’s “Come Get Her” before putting his thing down, flipping, and reversing it with, wait for it, Will Smith’s 1990 “Fresh Prince of Bel Air” theme song. Mind blown and so many nostalgic feels (cut to me doing the “Carlton” pressed up against other 80s babies thoroughly enjoying the flashback).

I could argue that A-Trak is best at his hip hop and rap-influenced mixes, but what he wrapped up with makes me question not only that, but also my entire human existence. He busted out nearly every recent single of his, from “Place On Earth” to “Out The Speakers” to “We All Fall Down”. Literally the only cherry that could have topped his double-decker extra fudge sundae of a set would have been “Ray Ban Vision”, a 2010 collab he did with Cyhi the Prynce.

Sweaty and satisfied. That’s my takeaway. If it’s not quite eloquent enough, I’ll leave you with the parting words of one club goer that went from stranger to instant bestie within a moment of exchanged wide-eyed glances…. “It is lit, fam.”

A-trak

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hardwell

Hardwell in Pittsburgh and Columbus February 2016

hardwell

The two-time DJ Mag crowned #1 World DJ is eponymous with the big house genre while also daring to delve into progressive trance. Although his title was taken from him in 2015- with much scrutiny from fans and fellow DJs- Pittsburgh and Columbus are both awaiting his February arrivals like the royalty he has become.

Out of the 11 stops on Hardwell’s North American Bus Tour, he’s spending time with Prime Social Group and friends for two. He will take the stage at the 31st Street Studios in Pittsburgh- which not too long ago threw a Kaskade concert so full of love, lasers, kandi, and confetti that I’m still trying to pick my jaw up off the warehouse space’s floor. This is a must-see venue and artist. Hardwell’s special guests will be Thomas Newson and Kill The Buzz. Newson is a spry 19-yr-old DJ with recent release “Pallaroid”- which was rumored to be an unreleased Hardwell track originally. Kill The Buzz rounds out the Three House-kateers with an electro twist on songs like “Dreamin” available on his SoundCloud page.

The Dutch DJ (also referred to as my “rave bae” unbeknownst to him) then makes his way to The Bluestone in Columbus for a Feb. 28 set that one can only hope will be as spiritual of an evening as the event space itself. If so, consider me Hozier and take me to church (Lord forgive me for my synths). The Bluestone is a 19th-century Baptist church converted to a music worshippers haven. Insert praying hands emoji here if Hardwell concludes the transcendental journey with “Birds Fly”, a futuristic ballad the artist himself considers one of his most “special tracks” on the We Are United album released in January 2015.

His heavy four-count hits can also be expected, to which we can all agree will bring down the house (Jesus’s house, mind you). “Chameleon” with Hardwell and Wiwek is a big sound club anthem starting off hyphy from the get go. What unifies Hardwell and his music to fans is the message he sends both prolifically and also literally that we are all united (hint from Captain Obvious: his debut album artist shares this sentiment). Songs like “Survivor” with Dannic ft. Haris and, well, basically his entire Ultra 2015 set showed that Hardwell is a total team player putting no “I” in “team” and for that we are thankful. And to bring it full circle, check out the Miami music festival clip above to see his bomb remix of “Take Me To Church”.

Buy your tickets to see Hardwell in Columbus and/or Pittsburgh here

Hardwell

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REVEALED-BUSTOUR2016_INSTAGRAM-1080x1080 Columbus

The Perfect Playlist for an Entry-Level EDM Listener

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Think about graduating from college: you don’t just walk into the job market and take the CEO’s spot (unless your Dad owns the company, lucky). You have to start somewhere, and that’s why entry-level positions exist. Here is that equivalent for those looking to get their feet wet in the vast, refreshing pool that is Electronic Dance Music.

If you like “Where Are U Now” by Justin Bieber f. Skrillex & Diplo
A little music math: add more Diplo and subtract the Biebs. Now you’ve got the makings of a club hit that newbies can comfortably transition towards as a wavering toddler would when taking his/her first steps. This 90s-inspired track from Diplo is a departure from his other latest as one-half of Jack U, with a catchy AF sampling of Jade’s 1992 “Don’t Walk Away” and a dance hall worthy, synthesized baseline.

If you like “Renegade” by X Ambassadors
Crooning, reflective vocals take on an electronic edge with “Firestone” by Kygo and Conrad Sewell. This track is slow and smoldering, building only at each chorus much like “Renegade”. Both songs are soulful, relying on consistency throughout, and provide smooth melodies for chillaxing during a low-key weekend.

If you like “Downtown” by Macklemore
Kitschy is your middle name if you wore this song out with your stock model speakers on a sweet moped, and I can’t help but love ya for it. “Intoxicated” by Martin Solveig and GTA has the same retro vibe with plenty of cowbell (though I could argue that there’s never enough cowbell); however, it will help you explore entry-level electronic elements like a grooving set of house horns. Both songs are guaranteed to force you to publicly showcase your signature dance moves like the lawnmower or wax on-wax off.

If you like “Love Myself” by Hailee Steinfeld
Congratulations! You’ve already been listening to a crossover hit… this whole time you thought you were basic, but turns out your foray into EDM started earlier this year with the upbeat, commercial house sound of “Love Myself”. Take it up a notch with the self-loving, playfully sensual sound of Galantis’s “Peanut Butter Jelly”. The lyrics beg for explanation similar to Steinfeld’s and the tracks share big builds with pulsating beats to give you all the good vibes.

If you like “Uptown Funk” by Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars
I see your funk factor and raise you with “Money Makin'” by Dillon Francis and A-Trak. There’s a ton of techno elements to this track but it also lends an irreverent feel similar to that of “Uptown Funk”. Keep your 70s-style burnt orange pimp suit on, Google basic shuffle moves, and you’re good to go.

If you like “Good For You” by Selena Gomez f. A$AP Rocky
Take the “love is a drug and I’m addicted” sultriness of this R&B song and add a little more vocal auto-tune…now you’ve got the oh-so orgasmic “Temptation” by Bondax and Erik Hassle. Both songs crave a replay with muted melodies and equally compelling, undulating beats that beg you to stay. You are officially not testing the waters anymore, young Jedi, you’re drowning and you definitely don’t want saved.