Keepin’ Track #8

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Every fortnight, The Corner’s Luke Owen Smith will highlight the latest electronica releases with his new column Keepin’ Track. For the latest in the series, he focuses on tracks from Daphni & Owen Pallett, Djrum, Baths, Christian Löffler and DAMH.

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Daphni & Owen Pallett – Julia

It’s always exciting to hear new music from Dan Snaith, who is best known for his work as Caribou but uses the Daphni moniker for his more club-ready creations. Here we find him collaborating with violinist Owen Pallett (aka Final Fantasy) in a track that, as always, pushes the boundaries of dance music and creativity.

Everything about this tune is pensive and dangerous, from the intense opening strings to the subtle, rumbling bassline that creeps out from a dark and bottomless cavern. The beat, although simple on the surface, seems to always be gaining on us with an unsettling menace, bringing with it an intimidating gang of bleeps, clicks and classic Snaith synth lines. The strings come and go with the shrewd intensity of a genius villain.

Out now on Jiaolong.

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Djrum – Ode

The legendary Djrum comes through with another stunning release for 2nd Drop Records: The Miracle. Here we have A-side ‘Ode’, a calm and beautiful meditation from the aural land that this producer seems to be the sole inhabitant of. Starting off with a steady, almost tribal drum beat, the track develops gently with the introduction of harp, strings and reverberated clouds. The highly emotional vocal samples fill the track with a powerful yearning that hits us where it hurts. Blossom petals fall into muddy puddles.

Out now. Check out the B-side as well!

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Baths – Ocean Death

As the title suggests, this new track by Will Weisenfeld is not dealing with anything small or light. There is a grandiose darkness; a vast, morbid space that is filled with existential turmoil. The opening bars are dominated by deep, guttural breathing that is later balanced out by Weisenfeld’s angelic falsetto tones. The vocals swirl and swoop around each other like waves of the ocean he is so acutely in touch with, layering gorgeously and drowning us in a Kate Bush-esque pop tragedy. The minimal 4/4 beat keeps the track from drifting off into the ether.

Out May 6th on Anticon.

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Christian Löffler – Veiled Grey

This is the penultimate track from Löffler’s new album Young Alaska – an autobiographical journey that translates landscapes and happenings into soundscapes and harmony. The graceful piano chords instantly evoke memories of our shared and poignant past, before the delicate techno beat puts things into motion and drives us forward. I picture road trips with old friends or new loves; driving through the rain, surrounded by mountains and valleys; sleeping on a shoulder after a long and tiring walk. It’s absolutely lovely.

Out now on Ki Records.

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DAMH – Black Night (DJ Koze Remix)

Yeah, just another Koze-Koze production. The thing I love most about this remix is that he’s clearly had so much fun making it. The original’s house beat has been thrown out of the window and replaced with a laid back hip hop groove, which is paired up with a heavily distorted bassline that sounds almost robotic. Twinkling harp floats softly in the background, along with some additional string parts and sound effects that give the whole thing a classic DJ Koze sound. Ada’s breezy vocals, combined with the altered vibe of the piece, give the whole thing a bit of a nineties trip hop feel, though it definitely still has a freshness to it.

Vinyl out now on Kompakt. Digital coming soon.

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