Saturday, September 29, 2012

Synthetix Weekend Update

A slightly early Weekend Update this week as I'm getting away for a few days down the coast chasing waterfalls during my vacation. Regularly scheduled programming on Synthetix will return on Thursday the 4th of October. Til then, keep on rockin hard and enjoy the cream of the crop from this week in the 80s inspired synth scene.

First up we have a new track from a new talent on the scene. Russian producer Ezavskih's track Night Of The Comet is a moody piece of dark synth with 80s personality out the ying yang. Style after the classic 80s movie this brings to mind lots of apocalyptic visions as the sirens scream the death knell for humanity. I'm looking forward to hearing more from Ezavskih in the post apocalyptic future!

Although verging the borders of ChipTune material the new two track EP from Arcade Metropolis is most definitely 80s through and through and the arrangements and orchestrations throughout both tracks are superb. Theres a dark edge to both pieces, but the energy as is a neon lit as it gets and both have a presence that is totally irrepressible.

Jaypeau's turning up the heat with his new composition of scifi themed drama: Fire In The Sky. This producer's upping the ante with each new track and is getting a lovely glossy polish to his sound. Theres a spatial nature to all of Jaypeau's tracks and this one is amping it up to epic proportions.

Fanateek One's unleashed more electrofunk 80s rockin with Night Drive. I really love this track, the bass line and percussion are absolutely stunning. Fanateek One is getting his sounds so perfectly refined and in the process finding his own musical voice. This is surely a sign of an impending EP or LP release in the near future with any luck.

In last week's Weekend Update I shared the Greetings Program remix of Warrior by Kimbra/A-Trak and Mark Foster. This week we have Silent Gloves reimagining of this song and again it brings forth much 80s love. It's a toss up for me which one I prefer, but I do prefer Greetings Program's work through the chorus to Silent Gloves. That said, this remix has extra dimensions through the break down.
You can't go wrong either way, so please vote for both!

A new untitled demo from Andy Fink really caught my attention this week. Although obviously still in a very early and formative stage I can't help but be hypnotised by the majestic percussion track. The effects on the drums compliment the bent keyboard melodies flawlessly. I can only dream about what this will evolve into!

One of the absolute highlights in album releases this year has been Pilotpriests Orginal Motion Picture Soundtrack (click here for the full Synthetix review of this wonderful album). Pilotpriest has unearthed another track intended for the album but it didn't make the cut. Nighthawks isn't what I'd call traditional 80s synth by any means, but the mix of early 90s sounds, modern sounds and lots of magic 80s synth-fluence make for a very interesting experience.

Our final track this week is from none other than LA Dreams. It's yet another beautiful piece of rapturous 80s synth love with his piece FutureEarth Contact. Using some classic NASA samples and and a thumping rhythm section brings an element of drama to the track, but it still keeps those velvet smooth LA Dreams synth melodies at the forefront. If you missed my interview with LA Dreams this week please click here to learn a bit more about this gifted producer of quality 80s experiences.

That does us for September 2012 on Synthetix, as I said I'll be back in action and rockin hard from Thursday the 4th of October. Until then thanks for spending some of your valuable weekend on Synthetix, stay true and stay 80s.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Synthetix Interviews LA Dreams

I rate myself one of LA Dreams biggest fans. It's not since the magic of MPM/Multipac and Mitch Murder have I been so enraptured with a producer. Like the aforementioned artists I find LA Dreams' music to be incredibly soulful and deeply emotive. The gift of melody and 80s spirit combine perfectly in LA Dreams' music, and it's a joy to experience every single one of this musician's releases.

With the release of LA Dreams' beautiful Perfect Summer LP I thought it was the perfect time to learn a bit more about this talented artist and bring to light some of the inspiration that drives their creative process.

Sit back, relax and let's spend some quality time with LA Dreams.

Greetings LA Dreams, it's great to be able to chat to the person behind some of my favourite music I've heard this year. It's a small scene doing the 80s synth gear, but you've managed to remain completely anonymous, is this something you've done on purpose or is it just how things have eventuated?
Well I like the idea of music speaking for itself, I'm kind of a private person, but i do enjoy meeting new people, and perhaps I'll emerge soon.  

So, how about some background on you? Where are you from? Did you get to experience the 80s first hand?
Well I'm originally from the East Coast spent my young life growing up in Miami where I started my young years in electronic music during the 80s, early fascination with new age bands such as The Cure, Depeche Mode, Spandau Ballet, OMD, Information Society, Duran Duran, New Order etc. then later moved to Los Angeles  

Oh so you also had the wonderful pleasure of growing up in the 80s. Everything was just so exciting in the 80s, I think theres an 'expectancy' of modern living in the 2000s, but the 80s felt like everything was new and fresh. Music definitely was going into bold new directions. I too am a big fan of all those bands too.. to think some of that stuff is going back 30 years now, well, it feels timeless to me. Is this something you try to bring into your music? That encapsulation of the times you experienced in your youth?
Absolutely, in my opinion there was no decade like the 80's it feels as if everything musically has been done as far as pioneering a genre is concerned. I love presenting the awesome 80s to a new generation of 80s lovers.  

You burst onto soundcloud of nowhere and your early tracks all felt beautifully complete. Have you been doing this music for a long time before bringing out into public space or is this a style you just found works for you?
I've been doing 80s electronic music since I was about 13 and so therefore it's a huge part of who I am as an artist. I've spent some years making club dance, electronic techno, but nothing makes me feel more connected to an era than the sounds of the 80s Yamaha DX7, Roland D50, Simmons drums etc.  

This explains why your sounds feel so true. I hear a lot of 80s inpsired synth that is accurate in arrangements, but the sounds are sometimes too clean and sterile. Your music always seems to have a soul to it, it's a very organic sound. Has this come naturally to you, or is it something you've been striving for since you began?
Well i all honesty, it's something that has always been told to me. I try yo achieve e depth in my music where the listener can hear the sounds of an era is if they were there,.. or wish they were, haha.  

What other music have you made in the past?
I've been involved with many styles, techno, club electro, french electro, rock, pop in my teen years I wrote, and produced for a band called "Entourage" which was a pop R'n'B act. 

Is working with others something you would like to do again, or have you decided to be a an exclusively solo artist?
I would love to collaborate with others, I too am a fan of so many of the great makers of 80s music today. Huge, huge fan of the Rosso Corsa crew

Your name is technically Sellorekt/LA Dreams, I've decided to always refer to you as LA Dreams by the way, but I've been dying to know what Sellorekt means?
HaHa! Sellorekt really is a term that means nothing, it's open for interpretation, but the word "Sello" is another word for "tape" in the british language. and "rekt" is just a slang spelling for the word "erect" essentially meaning "The sound of tape awakening or aroused".  

Hahah! Fantastic! The sheer volume of music you release is amazing, I know when I do the Weekend Updates on here that I used to always have your track released that week, but now you're forcing me to choose a favourite from the numerous ones you put on soundcloud. Is working on music your full time occupation? Or are you releasing music you completed a while back still?
Well first of all thank you very much. but all the music that I post is often recorded that day, or the night before. I'm somewhat ADD when it comes to just completing one song at a time. I have a strange work ethic. I usually work on 3-4 tracks at a time, because while creating one my mind hears another.

With so many tracks to choose from was it hard then to choose the line up for your new record Perfect Summer? Is there any theme to the tracks you included on there or is it more just a cross section of your favourites?
This first complete album was just a compilation of some of the movements of the 80s. Tunes that can make you say "Oh! I remember that time!"

I like making up names of different synth styles, mainly for my own amusement, but it was your music that originally made me think of the sub-genre Synth Romance. Theres a tangible element of romantic love scenes in so much of your music, is this where you emotionally draw from for your music and is this from real life inspiration?
Thank you. And yes you nailed it in terms of my inspirations. I remember as a child a few songs that have stuck with me throughout my life that have had romantic impact on my life such as Madonna's  "Crazy for you" from the movie Vision Quest. OMD's "If you Leave" from Pretty in Pink, Rupert Hine "Arrested By You" in Better off Dead. The list goes on, and on.  

What would you like to include sounds in your tracks that you currently don't, instrumentation wise? I mentioned working with others before, but is there a specific sound like horns or guitars or something else that you love to incorporate into the LA Dreams sound?
Yes, I'd like to incorporate more saxophones, or more orchestral sounds from the Yamaha CS80 courtesy of the great Vangelis.

Oh, wow, that sounds like a mindblowing combination! I'm a firm believer that if more 80s producer's get singers to do vocal tracks then they'll instantly double, or triple their audience. Not meaning to be sexist here, but females rarely get into instrumental music, especially in regards to electronic genres, but put a vocal on it and they'll engage much more with it. One only has to see how Patrick Baker is now a pinup dreamboat and household name almost overnight. The 80s synth scene only has a tiny amount of artists with vocal tracks, of course everyone wants to work with the super talented Kristine, but do you see the LA Dreams experience moving into vocal oriented songs in the future? Or is this something you'd just like to do as a project?
Absolutely, as a matter of fact. I'm currently working and writing a second album that will feature more vocalists such a Rachael, Evelyn Burke, and Daria . A few artists I've been wanting to work with forever, whom will all be featured on the next project.

These are very exciting prospects! As a producer do you listen to other current producer's work, for pleasure or inspiration? What other music do you listen to, 80s or otherwise?
Well I listen to a variety of genres, right now I'm listening to Crystal Castles, Fiona Apple, No Doubt, Swedish House Mafia, Metric, Skrillex etc.  

Looking to the future, do you see your music as LA Dreams something that you want to do forever? Are there are styles of music you'd like to explore under different monickers?
I see 80s music as always being a part of who I am, but I'm a huge fan of electro in all areas, I never limit myself so who knows.

Do you have any other 80s passions besides the music? I know I seem to get into new 80s related gear on a weekly basis, especially aspects of design from then.
Absolutely, I love 80s artists such as Patrick Nagel, Andy Warhol (well he's sort of 60's era) but nevertheless great artist. I'm a lover of Members Only Jackets, Testarossas, Sony Walkmans, and Nike Hi-Top pumps.

It's been a wonderful experience to interview you, LA Dreams, you really are one of my absolute favourite producers of 80s inspired synth music. Getting this chance to know you a little bit more has been marvellous. Any parting words for Synthetix before I let you get back to your hectic production schedule?
I really appreciate the interview, it's been awesome. Thanks for having me. I enjoy reading your blogs on all the great artists that are out there. I'll just sign off by saying thatI'm so happy to see where music is returning with the outbreak of so many talents out now. Keep up the great blogs my friend, and please stay tuned: Sellorekt/ LA Dreams is on a journey so watch what's next!

I'd like to personally thank LA Dreams for the time taken to do this interview, and I'd also like to thank them for all the amazing music released thus far.

Perfect Summer is available now on LA Dreams' Bandcamp here and be sure to keep frequenting Synthetix for lots more rockin LA Dreams action in the future.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Nightcrawler Becomes The Knight Rider

Nightcrawler has been producing music of many denominations over the last year spanning nearly all the colours in the spectrum. His latest two track EP is indoutidably coloured gloss black and lit bright red with his 80s synth homage to Knight Rider. The revs are high and the rubber is burned as Nightcrawler gets some high octane 80s electro synth rockin hard.

The original TV series of Knight Rider is a hallmark of classic 80s action/adventure. I fondly remember being an ardent fan of this when it first aired and it still stands up today as one of the decades great series. It's no wonder it serves such inspiration to modern producers as the source material is so inexorably 80s in design and execution.

Nightcrawler's EP begins with the Knight Rider Autocruise. This tracks draws superbly from the TV shows original opening theme and adds some more colour and spice to the experience. The opening intro is powerfully executed as the wheels spin before gaining enough traction to launch headlong down the desert highway. The main melody roars into high gear and Michael and KITT are already trading witty banter while the action heats up. The crispness of the sounds used in Nightcrawler's production really stand out in Autocruise, beautifully balance but sharp like switchblade.

The second track, Turbo Boost  trades the highway for the disco as the tone becomes a little more italo flavoured. Sumptuous melodies are powered by an eight cylinder engine of driving percussion. I  can almost see this track being used in a night club scene with Michael Knight seducing Heather Locklear or some other 80s babe on the dance floor. A leather clad, gyrating Hasselhoff proving completely irresistable to every girl in the club and incessant swooning over him only ceases when KITT shows up and, once again, steals the show.

Nightcrawler's Knight Rider EP is available for free download on his soundcloud here, and be sure to give hima solid high-five on his Facebook page here as well.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Plaisance Take To The High Seas In Regatta

I love a well themed release, the concept album may be irrelevant to most modern music but it's something that takes on bold new definitions when used as the format for 80s inspired synth music. As it lends itself so well to soundtrack music, it's also capable of telling it's own tales and making it's own aural adventures. Plaisance's new album Regatta takes the concept of sailing the ocean in fierce competition as the basis for this record, working in equal doses of atmosphere, action and the thrill of the race packaged into one beautifully engaging experience.

Life by the ocean is a staple of many 80s themed experiences, whether its cruising the coastline in the latest european sportscar, soaking up some rays with some hardbodies beachside or watching the sunset over the waves breaking across the shoreline. Regatta takes the adventure even further as it travels from the safety of the coastline and into the deep blue ocean, where the wind is your only source of power and the elements conspire against you at every tack and turn.

The story begins at Sunrise. The first rays of a new day bring with it the excitement of once again being on the ocean, this combined with the anticipation of the race ahead creates an instant morning buzz. Shaking off the dreams of the night before and rising to the challenge of the day gets things in motion and our focus on the blue horizon begins. We're up before the alarm even goes off, and when it does it reminds us that time is something we don't have a lot of. The morning routine is a rush and a blur as the synth melodies ride across the morning breeze. Bright sounds bring the morning to life as our hearts beat faster in time with the music, bringing in an electronic energy to the morning rituals.

Time to get to the beach and to our yacht and Rafales gets things rocking along with the beat of a new day filled with promise and adventure. The beats seem dance across the whitecaps on the bay, glinting, rising and halting with fervor and passion. Once we reach the shoreline the milling crowds separate to allow access to our craft. It's gleaming hull reflecting the waterline, bobbing gently as the swell caresses the bow. Time for one last chance to check her out, make sure the rigging it set and do some quick tests before taking her out. The other sailors are making their way to their boats, but the music makes us focus on our vessel. Bonding with her and the anticpation gives way to contemplation as we get right into the zone.

The start of the race erupts with an opening stanza of melodious and symphonic synth power, matching the breeze's force as we open up the mainsail and begin cutting through the chop and increasing speed as the competition starts. The action is unrelenting with percussion and rhythms trading blows as we head windward. The light dances across the water as the solos shred the air, cutting like a blade of sound. The spray splashes over us and the sound doesn't miss a beat, taking us faster and farther into the vast blueness ahead. It's time to Sail For Glory and push both man and vessel to the limit.

But the competition begins to rise to the occassion, the ocean is a minefield of flying yachts moving in seemingly endless directions, hunting and searching for the right angle to capitalise on the wind direction. They say it's luck but we know it's intuition as the pounding rhythms take us away from the pack and the Tailwind picks up, like a turbo boost our craft feels ready for take off as the guitars soar in and rock us even harder.

Now is the time to show them what we're made of and win this race. A Spindrift attack is the only way and man and yacht become one as the ocean's unrelenting power does it's best to separate us. The power and force drives hard against the hull and wind feels like a gale, ready to almost tear both into shreds. Only our tenacity keeps us right on course, taking on all mother nature can throw, careening through the high seas and just as the mast threatens snap and we're torn from bow to stern we cross the finish line,.. FIRST!

Almost immediately it feels like the gods of the sea have relinqusihed their powers and allowed the chop of the whitecaps to ease into a serene Mer d'huile. The surface of the ocean is like glass as our yacht coasts through it. It's a time for reflection both inward and outward. The race is run and the victory is ours. The elation felt inside our exhausted body, drenched with saltwater and every muscle burning with pain. But the melodies remind us of why we do this. It's not about the glory, it's about the conquest of the fear inside. The quelling of the demons that haunt us. The satisfaction of completing that personal goal. The sun is setting on this epic day, the orange water washing around us as we stare into the horizon. Full of respect for the mighty powers of the ocean and at peace for the first time in what feels like forever. The Regatta is over and our victory is felt deeper than we thought possible.

Plaisance's Regatta LP is available for free download on their Bandcamp here. This nautical adventure of high action on the high seas and is most certainly a Synthetix approved experience.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Synthetix Weekend Update

The releases keep on rockin for quality 80s inspired synth music and this week's been no exception so without further delay lets get into this week's Weekend Update.

Russia's Quasar's new demo cut for Shocking Facts feels like a great place to start this Weekend Update. A totally 80s synthstravaganza with some killer samples and some scintillating cow bell and hi-hat work. For demo this feels very complete, the final cut should prove a worldwide number 1 hit.

Arcade High is keeping his work rate up with a new synth romance track entitled Only In July. This another work of beauty from this producer, well up to the standard of the excellent Beauty Queen EP recently released You Said Forever single . The depth of feeling is beautifully intimate and the orchestrations are a wonder to behold.

A preview teaser for Vincenzo Salvia's next EP called The Chase has got me very excited. This Italian synth maestro is one of the brightest new stars in the scene and from the sounds of this short preview it looks like we're in for an action packed affair indeed.

LA Dreams also has an impending release in the coming weeks but he's spoiled us yet again with another piece of quality 80s synth gold with Love Lessons 101. Few producers have the talent for totally authentic 80s sounds and arrangements in the scene and this proves my theory further. Also be on the look out for the Synthetix LA Dreams interview which will be coinciding with the release of his new record.

Theres been a few great remixes released this week that I'd like to share, although not 100% 80s synth sounding they've definitely got the sould of the 80s deep within them. First off is a great remix from Final DJs. Their reenvisioning of Emeron & Fox's Nightmares is an 80s dream with soaring synths that really work well with the vocal track.

Greetings Program has worked his magic remix on Mark Foster, A-Trak & Kimbra's Warrior song. There's something about Kimbra's voice that seems lend itself perfectly to an 80s sound and Greetings Program has really breathed some neon 80s life into this song, definitely for it's betterment.

Our final remix is from Mindscramble and his work on Kites' Jumped Up Boy In Livery song is totally rockin in supreme 80s radness. This is a monster remix that I fell instantly in love with. Masses of energy and unmistakably 80s arrangements make this remix one of my favourites this year.

Getting back to original tracks released this week 80s Stallone's been kicking up his disco shoes with a new epic called Out Of The Blue. The driving bassline and energised percussion combined with the plentiful breakdowns make this a huge synth disco odyssey.

Our final track this weekend is from an artist new to me called Spacious Sweep. His new track, Blade of Love, is beatiful mix of italo and atmospheric synth creating a winning combination of sounds. This artist will be someone I'll be paying close attention to in the future and I'm sure we'll be seeing a lot more of him on Synthetix.

That wraps up another big week in the 80s inspired synth scene. There is so much quality music being produced currently that it's a bit hard to cover everything, but I'll always endeavour to make sure that Synthetix is your one-stop-destination for all the most rockin music flavoured with that 80s magic we love.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Le Cassette Open Their Arms

Le Cassette's work in channelling authentic 80s pop synth has been taken to a new level of majesty with their song Arms Of Mine. When a band like this get everything so exceptionally right it bears noting as it's such a rarity to have a fully authentic 80s sound both instrumentally and vocally.

Arms Of Mine trancends time and brings everything back to 1984 to the epicentre of classic UK synthpop. Equal measures of many classic 80s bands of that period can be heard in this track, but theres a genuine identity to Le Cassette's sound the makes this much more than just an homage.

The slow and deliberate pace of this song makes it's emotional lyrics manifest even deeper with each word hanging, longing and pained on each note of the melodies. The presence in the voice is undeniable, melding musically with ebbs and flows of the synthscapes, making for a single coherent experience that feels true and natural.

Tiny details in the sounds make the biggest effects. Slight inflections on select words make each lyric ring with a strength and permanence that is betrayed by the frailty of the actual words used. It's a side that is attempting to hide a vulnerability which is threatening to breack down entirely and by the track's end this collapse becomes inevitable as the melodies degenerate into a glitchy mess of frustration and anger.

Upon initial listens I found this last part of the experience to be hugely jarring and instantly disliked this change of tone and style. But with repeated listenings I've come to appreciate the contrast of the final chapter in this tale as the ending we didn't want to experience and feel. The ending isn't happy and blossoming with the ideals of rekindled love, but is dark, confused and offers no peace of mind, which in life is sometimes a much more realistic experience when powerful emotions are left unrequited.

Although Arms Of Mine is not available to buy anwhere as yet, I'm hoping for an impending EP release from Le Cassette in the near future, to keep informed of all the happenings with this wonderfully complex and inspired band please follow them on their soundcloud here and give them some love of their Facebook page here while you're at it.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Rolly Mingwald Stars As The New Girl

The latest release from Telefuture Records is Rolly Mingwald's debut EP called The New Girl. After their recent gorgeous releases from Makeup and Vanity Set and Mr Nisness Telefuture have brought us another exciting new producer positively bubbling over with 80s love.

This seven track EP is driven by a lot of the classically styled 80s synth sounds but Rolly Mingwald throws in the occassional modern touch to the production. This brings a balanced level of familiarity and unexpected surprises to the experience and walks a line that gets everything sounding righteous while still adding some individual flair.

This 2012 Shermer soundtrack is, however, of two personalities. Theres a lightness and contrasting darkness to this EP that is invigorating and fascinating. As 80s inspired synth styles go theres lots and lots of sub genres that traverse all moods and feelings, and for a seven track EP The New Girl manages to cover nearly all of these into a condensed experience. It's like The Reader's Digest for 80s inspired synth music, which I mean in the most endearing way, without any negative connotations.

From the intoductory track we're greeted with light and radiant naivete. The spectrum is filled with aural rainbows of exuberant happiness and catchiness. This motif runs through the first half of The New Girl perfectly. In fact, the opening three tracks feel like they're one piece cut into three shorter vignettes in order explore their sounds fully. The title track is a bouncy and sparkling synthtopia with a bassline that I find thoroughly magical. By the time we move into Sleep Over (Up All Night) the ante is upped massively to what I believe is the high point of the EP. This track is one hell of an exhibition of how new and old techniques can coalesce into an experience of stupendous exhileration. I just can not get enough of this track's bass line and drum track, it's perfection is utterly wonderful and the naivete of the opening Intro is further explored in an explosion of positivity.

It's when Missed Call kicks in that the darker sounds and moods begin seep into the bright sound. A melancholy air floats through what was once a place where only joyous sounds once belonged. Melodies become harsh, and the naivete and innocence of the opening chapters give way to a seamier side of life. The shadows grow longer, and begin to cover the entire soundscape and by the time Dead Man's Curve kicks in we're entirely in the realm of darkness with survival now being the main thing on our minds.

As the curve winds around the dark and jagged coastline we hear night versions of previous Rolly Mingwald sounds. All naivete is now replaced by depravity, and pulses race from fear instead of joy. As the tyres squeal around each death defying bend it becomes very clear that we're light years from the intro and right before we careen through the guard rails and into the gaping maw of dark and broiling sea below us the roas veers in a new direction

The last two chapters of The New Girl eschew the night's darkness and catapults the listener into a glowing party vibe that rediscovers our intial feelings. The happiness returns and the darkness is drowned out by the shining lights and elevating mood of For The Winner. Jubilation and elation are the hallmarks that bind us as we experience a winning feeling of overcoming the odds and no longer just being The New Girl.

Our journey wouldn't be complete without a time for introspection and contemplation, the Outro track finishes our time being The New Girl succintly and satisfyingly. As the credits roll through it's become clear that our ride through the harrowing time of initiation and just fitting in has given way to finding our true selves; becoming self aware of who we are and taking that next step into the unknown and exciting future.

Telefuture Records presents The New Girl EP from Rolly Mingwald which opens on the 18th of September, be sure to get your copy here. This EP is most definitely Synthetix approved and recommended to all lovers of fine 80s sounds.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Synthetix Weekend Update

Another week in the 80s inspired synth scene has produced some kick arse new tunes, let's catch up on some the special highlights and bring some neon 80s love into your weekend.

AKAHandsDown's most recent track called Morning Breeze is the perfect place to start. This lightly swaying piece of moody synth work is thoroughly beautiful. The sounds move in and out of visibility with gorgeous nuance, summoning feelings of a bright new day streaming with golden sunlight.

Shifting into high gear Stellar Dreams' new track Sunset Chaser is loaded with high energy action. The super busy perscussion tracks provided the perfect complement to the smoothly undulating synth melodies. The music powers along at gallop  and the slow canter in one of it's later acts serves even more enriching.

Lost Years is getting his electro groove rockin hard in his latest preview The Electro Clash. Channeling some Paul Hardcastle and bringing in the trademark Lost Years synth melodies makes for the tantalising experience. Although on a short demo, it will no doubt evolve further in the coming weeks.

A great new track from the talented Fanateek One surface this week called September's Nights. This has got to have one of the funkiest bass lines I've heard recently. The accompanying video clip from The Wizard just makes it all work even harder in recreating that quality 80s experience.

Never one to rest on his laurels, Tommy's back in action this time with a remix of a song by Pasha. The Tommy magic is a perfect match for this vocal heavy euro pop, and it's subtlety and emotion sound very 80s indeed. Black Tears is supremely atmospheric and completely invigorating.

A new talent on the scene is Jaypeau, his new track Cobra is an action packed synthphony buzzing with energy and beautifully layered. The arrangements of this track are stunning, maximising the drama and ensuring the listener isn't sure just what's around the corner.

A new synth producer has come to my attention courtesy of Telefuture Records delightfully called Rolly Mingwald. This preview track to the seven track release due next week is superb, incorporating classic synth romance with a great distinctive sound. Expect a full review on Synthetix upon it's release.

I'd be completely remiss not to mention Slick Moranis' new song, Another Sleepless Night which was shared to soundcloud this week. This is a deeply emotional piece of 80s indie synth that has a magic all it's own. The haunting melodies and ghostlike vocals work together in a supremely wondrous manner. Be sure to check out the excellent Perturbator remix here for more sleepless nights love.

From AKAHandsDown's Morning Breeze to Stellar Dreams' Sunset Chaser to Fanateek One's September's Nights to Slick Moranis' Another Sleepless Night we've traversed a full day here on this week's Weekend Update on Synthetix. I hope your weekend is just as full of action and emotion and I look forward to sharing more music with you next week.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Lolski Takes Fall To The Sky

Amesterdam's Lolski has just released a new EP and it's two tracks are both beautifully written and produced 80s inspired synth, coloured with autumnal tones. Future City Records rocks another great release with this one and it definitely makes for a special listening experience.

The Autumn Skies EP contains the titular track and Downtown District, but a nice bonus track has surfaced today in the the Vincenzo Salvia remix of Autumn Skies as well. The direction of this EP is new, and fresh, keeping the 80s spirit glowing within, while the last rays of warmth light our days before the cold of winter begins.

The opening refrain in Autumn Skies is the definition of mellow. The tonal warmth of the synth sounds feels welcoming and inviting; like a cloudy day that finally has some rays of sunlight peeking through the dreary sky. Lighting the afternoon, bathing it in a glow that warms the skin raises the spirit. The feelings of Autumn always seem fleeting, just as the season gets to it's azimuth in colour and mood it begins to fade into the coldness of winter. But the Autumn Skies we can share in this track make the last just a bit longer. The moment's of golden synthscapes as the leaves fall gracefully around us are truly wonderful, capturing the lightness and frailty of the mood perfectly and succinctly.

As the amber sunset relinquishes it's colour to the purple dark of night we hit the Downtown District. Lights begin to replace the failing natural light and the chill of the air is much more noticible than it seemed only last week. The night gives us new energy though, a powerful rhythm drives a velvet smooth melody that falls around, warming us against the cold and taking us deeper into the excitement this autumn night will bring. Shimmering sounds make the cares of the day disappear, the Downtown District is where we want to be and it's where our adventure tonight begins.

The Autumn Skies EP is available for FREE download on Future City Records' Bandcamp here and is an EP you'll be wanting to spend time with again and again, regardless of the season you're in.

The lovely bonus to this delectable EP is the re-envisioning of the title track by Vincenzo Salvia. This is a beautifully constructed retelling of the autumn afternoon, continuing the theme into brighter direction, adding some more detail to the melodies, but still keeping the warm soul of the original at that forefront. The Autumn Skies remix is available here free download.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Dynatron Burn Like Fire

With recent collaboration with Starforce still fresh in our hearts and imaginations, Dynatron has burst forth with a new three track EP: Fireburner. This three track release posts another milestone in the Dynatron experience as the overtly dark and foreboding sounds of previous Dynatron tracks gives way to a new direction.

The episodes in space synth terror we've witnessed in this producers early work has now grown in new directions that still provide an eerie soundtrack to the frozen void of the galaxy, but also bring elements of feeling and humanity into the Dynatron sound. With these new evocative dimensions weaved into the mix the experience of Fireburner is something that is definitely dangerous and powerful, but also warm and enduring.

The title track kicks out a positively uplifting melody that inspires yearning and jubilation, the brightness of the stars is now the focus instead of the black void. Tinges of more spatial sounds wash over like galactic waves. There is an edge of the unknown, the risk is evident however the power of the melody causes spirits to rise, confidently and proudly. The contrasts of these sounds are beautifully delivered, keeping a flow that moves forward throughout the journey, powering through the struggles and conquering the alien frontier beyond.

Cosmo Black follows on from the opening piece with a much more morose sound, the hope forged true in the opening stanza is now made much more dramatic in tone. The early succcess of the first part of the journey has now been compromised and rising to meet this new challenge is a true test of will and spirit. Haunting spectres of galactic ghosts chant a Siren's call, piercing to the very soul, forever tortured in their cosmic sepulchre. Their cries ringing out through the void as a warning to all travellers. The path is fraught with danger, but the beat drives us forward, powering through the darkness, the rhythmic engines take us beyond the danger and into new realms that we can only hope provide for safer travel.

The Fireburner EP feels like an introduction to something far greater, almost like the pilot episode to a longer series. The stage is set for massively entertaining adventure and I hope Dynatron takes us through these exciting possibilities soon. To finish of the EP the title track is expertly remixed by Thomas Barrandon in a rendition that is powered by a different coloured energy, that makes the experience feel quite different. Like a parallel dimension, this remix makes Fireburner take on new perspectives while still staying true to it's burning essence.

Aphasia Records presents the Fireburner EP from Dynatron and is available on Bandcamp here and is a highly recommended experience cosmic synth drama from Synthetix.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Synthetix Weekend Update

After a monster week of hot released the sounds keep on rockin on Synthetix with a fully packed, strapped and jacked Weekend Update!

Vector Hold had been a bit quiet of late but he's returned with avengeance with his new track Out Of Limits. It's boppy bassline and delectably delivered synth layers accent the moody melody. This feels like it should accompany something like Ghostbusters with it's haunting soundscape.

One of my most listened to tracks this week is a demo from Betamaxx called Punks In The Disco. I absloutely love the bassline in this, the high energy drums and synths make for a classically 80s experience. I'm really looking forward to seeing how this develops into a final version as this demo cut is totally rocktacular.

Dreamwave Dave came out with another solid track in Push this past week. Dabbling in some delightfully twinkling  chiptune sounds this piece is loaded magical melodies and a drum track that powers along jubilantly. This producer's consistency in delivering great music is something to be applauded.

It looks like Sternrekorder's recent hiatus is well and truly in the past, for which I'm eternally grateful. His two recent killer cuts, Carousel and Heimweh have been joined by another totally kick arse release entitled Comma Eight. Lots of italo love in this track and absolute perfection in the sounds. Incredble.

Giallo Disco pioneer Vercetti Technicolor unleashed the supercharged Sports a few days ago, once again providing chills, thrills and disco kills. This is the ultimate olympic anthem, coursing with energy, tinged with terror and unrelenting in delivery.

Lost Years is already up to version two of his new track Black Waves. Hitting a bit lower and darker than his last few tracks this moody drama has some of the most rocking handclaps I've heard in recent times. I can only hope version three will bring in some classic samples from American Psycho, as teased at by the cover art.

In what I'd describe as a near fatal wet dream of musical collaborations, Televisor has teamed up with 80s synth scene pin-up boy Patrick Baker and created something sure to get girls screaming all over the planet. Run Away is 80s pop synth magic that will hopefully find both artists working again together soon.

Last but most certainly not least we have a wonderful new track from Lueur Verte that's just come out. This is the follow up to Rockin' Summer and continues down a similar path. Once again we get a great dose of guitars to compliment the soaring synth work. It's a very polished experience and makes me wish for an EP or, better yet, an LP from Lueur Verte to really be able to drink in the atmosphere of this talented artists work.

Thanks for sharing all the action in the 80s inspired synth scene this week on Synthetix and I hope to share more musical magic with you next week!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Outer Space Adventurer As Scored By Tommy

The concept release has already been a format well implemented this year. From Lazerhawk's Visitors, to Arcade High's Beauty Queen to the recent Night Heat from Arc Neon; the themed EP and LP are becoming a superb way of making the music speak even louder, with more presence and power making the experience something far greater than the sum of it's parts.

From this point on the idea of what makes a concept album great in the 80s inspired synth scene has changed and evolved into something even greater. Synth soundtrack music is often cited as one of the more emotive 80s synth styles. The work of artists like Vangelis, Jan Hammer, Giorgio Moroder and Harold Faltermeyer (and many more) is a common inspiration for modern producers. The scores these
artists wrote, for what we now consider classics, are timeless and it's hard to even imagine watching the movies these composers scored for without the musical accompaniment.

Tommy's Outer Space Adventurer is a high water mark for the concept/soundtrack genre. Simply put, this is a motion picture experience without the need for the visuals. Over the twenty pieces that make up this album the gamut of 80s sci fi space adventure is explored, detailled and experienced first hand. Through alien cities, heated laser battles, cosmic betrayals, the spirit of humanity and the triumph of good over evil is delivered directly into our imaginations.

The key word in this album is triumph. There is a feeling of triumph in the face of adversity, beating the odds, risking it all for a greater good, that is ever present. From the opening introductory pieces the feeling of being a part of something bigger than the indivual, something cosmic in scale. It's a beautiful way of building a sense of where we are and where we're going. The manner in how this is delivered is the master stroke of Tommy's creative talent.

Pieces are allowed to grow and evolve, to be nurtured and explored. Nothing in this entire release feels rushed or unfinished. It's a side to Tommy that I didn't even realise existed until now. The music loses itself in it's own universe, taking us along for the ride of our lives. It's something that becomes very apparent by the mid point of the record. The scope of where we've been and where we're yet to go is awe inspiring. By the time the credits are rolling during the final track the feeling of being completely entertained and wholly satisfied with what we've experienced is the ultimate reward.

I find it hard to isolate any part of this album as each and every track's purpose and vitality is borne from the previous one and taken even further by the proceeding piece. This is something I've taken to listening to in one complete sitting, as one would take in a movie and I believe this album mixed as one track, or perhaps two, would make for an even grander experience. Outer Space Adventurer brings Tommy to the forefront of quality 80s inpired synth producers, his use of almost every single sub genre of this music throughout the album is staggering. But the really special part is that every track sounds like Tommy, not someone trying emulate another producer but someone who's found their sound.

The Tommy sound is what powers the Out Space Adventurer album, it's a fuel the gleams with chrome  and sparkles with a distant star's light. It's the power of emotion, excitement, drama and loss. It's the sound of triumphant success in a cosmic battle where failure means humanity's end. A story for the ages created with fantastic surrealism that is tempered by the human emotions within us all.

Outer Space Adventurer is now available on Tommy's Bandcamp here and I would encourage everyone to take home this perfectly contstructed space opera today and let it become a place and time you can visit whenever you feel the need to take to the stars to save humanity.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Mitch Murder's Glass Cities

Like every music scene there's always the artists that are the cream of the crop, the artists that consistently release music of a quality that keeps raising the bar and redefining the genre. The 80s inspired synth scene has numerous protagonists that wear this mantle, but I believe everyone in the scene would agree that Mitch Murder is at the pinnacle of the music we love and consistently raises the bar with each successive release.

And with each release comes a certain expectation. An expectation of hearing certain sounds and experiencing certain moods. An expectation of listening to new aural pleasures, and an expectation that this new work takes us further down that same road back into the 80s. To be very honest, I'm scared when I hear new Mitch Murder. I'm scared that it won't be what I think it should be. It's something I'm aware of these days as after listening so much of his music over the years I'm reminded of the law of averages, and that often artists want to expand their musical horizons and not become typecast, or predictable.

If anything Mitch Murder manages to deliver the music I want hear, as well as give me sounds and emotions I didn't know I wanted to hear. I believe the influences and talent of this artist is something that is innately 80s. This isn't music he's making because it takes his fancy this month, or something he's doing while he waits for something else to come along. This is Mitch Murder, this is what he does, and (I hope) it's what he'll always do.

I had a conversation with him a while back, and I mentioned how I was into this music for the long haul, and in 10 or 20 years from now I still want to be experiencing and writing about new Mitch Murder music. This may seem a fanciful notion to some younger Synthetix readers, but to me the 80s isn't a fad or phase; it's a way of life and one I'm going to continue to uphold for the duration. With artists like Mitch Murder along for the ride, it gives me solace and comfort to think that no matter what happens with changes in music styles and trends that I'll be able to trust Mitch Murder to take me back to 1985 whenever I want to.

With his previous Mars EP Mitch Murder began ushering in beautiful prog sounds that blended beautifully with his already established ones. A more experimental and ambient array that made for an exciting new experience. This is the magic of this producer, he can make those 80s emotions and wonders appear and belong and exist perfectly alongside other elements while still remaining true to the decade. It's something I'm very aware of in his new Glass Cities EP.

The five originals (plus one remix from Sylvester) layer new dimensions to his existing pallette. There's a languid calmness to a lot of Glass Cities. It's a feeling that's almost organic. The basslines bind and tethers cloudlike melodies with drums and percussion forming  barely an rhythmic pulse. It's a mixture that balances beautifully, and makes tracks like Last Call infinitely interesting. Mitch Murder's previous daliances with slower atmospheric pieces felt like he was doing all he could to not blast off into hyperspace. This EP shows that he's developed this side to the point that it comes across as being perfectly natural and still being perfectly Mitch Murder.

Glass Cities includes more frenetic and glossy ventures with the classic Shoot The Core! and new The Best Of The Best. By comparison to the more ethereal tracks these feel like straight up rock. The energy flows like molten gold, rich with colour and tone but never pushing too hard. It's this fine balance that resonates throughout the five original tracks on the EP, making for an experience that is both relaxing and energising. It's a complete package which marks a wonderful new waypoint in the Mitch Murder adventure.

The Glass Cities EP is now availble on DhARMA Records Bandcamp here and it's an EP I hope you enjoy as much as I have, and still am.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Dynatron & Starforce Form An Alliance

I absolutely adore the collaborative works that have been appearing in the 80s inspired synth scene this year. There have been so many great pieces of music that have come from the combined talents of two producers, multiplying their strengths and creating an original new experience.

Starforce and Dynatron have released their first collaboration called Adrift In A Sea Of Silver and it's one gorgeous piece of introspectively emotive synth work that rises and ebbs with the tide that it's floating upon.

It's an expansive work that feels huge in scope, and makes the listener feel tiny in it's presence. The narrative of being adrift upon an alien ocean of chrome, staring up the galaxies above. The feeling of insignificance in the universe, but aslo feeling at one with it as the melodies meet our swaying upon the undulating surface. The beauty of these moments captured perfectly by producers working in eachother's mindspace in a symbiotic musical relationship.

Adrift In A Sea Of Silver is available for free download here, and please make sure you give both artists lots of love on Dynatron's soundcloud here and Starforce's soundcloud here.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Synthetix Weekend Update

Welcome to another Weekend Update on Synthetix. One thing becoming very evident is how hard the deciding line is becoming between releases getting their own dedicated post during the week or being included in the Weekend Update. I usually try to give the weekday posts to new artists, EPs and album releases, whereas singles/previews and remixes are covered on the Weekend Update. With the amount of quality music coming out that I'd like to cover it's becoming difficult as to how I'll cover everything.
But this is a wonderful problem to have, the scene's rich with talent at the moment and I want try to give every producer the chance to find an audience that appreciates their music.

One thing for sure, it's a great time to be a fan of 80s inspired synth music! Let's get rockin!

First off is superb preview for Dynatron's new EP release entitled Fireburner. This is due out September 8 and is sounding like it's going to be a grandiose spectacle of synthesized gold. The Dynatron sound is definitely rising to new levels from this preview, I'm greatly looking forward to the full experience.

LA Dreams is keeping his work rate as high as the standared of his writing and his new track Missing You is cementing his place in the upper echelons of the scene even further. It's becoming apparent to me that his Synth Romance tracks are his strongest sub-genre and Missing You proves this further.

The new song from Alloapm instantly grabbed my attention this week. The sounds in this track are beautifully constructed and the vocal track adds even more dimension to the experience. This avant garde track definitely has the soul of the 80s deep in it's heart. I hope Kingyo is a sign of sounds to come from Alloapm.

Jowie Schulner's music has been getting back to some classic 80s sounds recently, which is absolutely awesome in this man's eyes. His preview of the new track Klangk is a powerful and emotional piece that is begging to be fully realised in an extended format.

I've been a fan of Navigateur's experimental synth music for a while now, as I hope you are, and his latest release is the title track for his next album called 2020. This is so catchy it hurts, I love everything about this track and it's a wonderful hybrid of new and old sounds. The 2020 album is going to ROCK!

Professor Zonic Zynth's been hard at work in his laboratory creating new music and his piece Grace's Theme really does a magical job of creating a totally 80s atmosphere. This producer's work goes from strength to strength and I'm really hoping an album release is going to happen sometime soon.

Synthetix favourite Klockhaus has released his first EP through Purr Tapes on Bandcamp. This EP has a couple of new pieces as well as including some singles previously released, including the reference Brainchild. This has a limited edition cassette release so get on it while you can as they won't last long.

To finish off this Weekend Update we have Matt Creamer's new work. I find this very special as he's taken inspiration from an 80s TV commercial from Philips and written a track to go with the visuals. The end result is a sublime melding sound and vision in a manner I've not seen realised before. Exceptional music, and the perfect way to finish off another week on Synthetix.