Feedback Friday – December 6th, 2019

Feedback Friday is Blisspop’s weekly exploration of the latest tunes being released both in the mainstream and underground electronic scenes. Each week our group of contributors submit tracks for review whether they have 6 plays or 6 million. 

We are back at it again and this edition features our contributors: Alex Rubenstein, Justin Barini-Rivers, Aeron Premo, and Marshall Stukes. This week’s music includes tracks by The Galleria, Galcher Lustwerk, Tchami remixed by Valentino Khan, RTIK, and init:fx:user. Enjoy and let us know your thoughts on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram.

The Galleria – “Stop & Go”

Aeron Premo – I admit, I am totally envious of Jessy Lanza. Her synth, production and songwriting skills, the artists she is able to collaborate with…she is incredibly lucky as an artist! And her latest collaboration with Morgan Geist is pure perfection. This is a fantastic, modern-day freestyle track with impeccable production, a catchy melody and vocals that are absolutely tailor made for this style of music. The drum claps and synth patches stand out and compliment the beat in such a great way. I would love to hear a full length album from this duo. (9/10)

Alex Rubenstein – If you look up the word ‘bop’ in the dictionary, you’re likely to find this song as exhibit number one. Jessy Lanza and Morgan Geist are a perfect match. Jessy’s breezy, effortless vocals float on top of the free wheeling, feel-good instrumental. There is just so much infectious energy here it’s hard not to just keep pressing play over and over again. The drum programming here is excellent and mix very well with the vocal cut ups. At just over four minutes, it’s the perfect length for repeated listens. I can’t find a single flaw. (9.5/10)

Marshall Stukes – The simplicity of this track is great. It’s a simple 80s inspired pop song that hits. I like the airiness of the beginning, and the drum track has enough variations to keep me engaged in the rhythm. The vocals are a great addition to the lightness, but I wasn’t as much of a fan of the glitched productions of them. (7.5/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – This is an upbeat tune with some cheeky pop vocals that are quite infectious and work well with the 80’s vibes on the synths. Overall, the vocals are my favorite part. She is pushing around a bit in her timing which helps keep the song moving and not feel too repetitive. The synths and vocals do a good job of keeping me dancing. (6/10)

Galcher Lustwerk – “Overpay, Overstay”

Aeron Premo – On first listen, I was immediately reminded of Channel Tres as he has a similar sound, combining deep house arrangements with spoken word vocals. But Galcher Lustwerk has his own style as well, and I think his musical arrangements lean a bit more downtempo. I also hear a bit of Larry Heard/Mr. Fingers in the melody and beats. This track is incredibly strong; the lush synths are a natural high in itself. The relaxed vocals totally compliment the arrangement and, while soft spoken, they are given room to breathe. I look forward to checking out more of his material. (9/10)

Alex Rubenstein – Galcher Lustwerk is an artist that somehow has been just outside of my musical sphere for a number of years until now. The hip-hop elements here are refreshing compared to a lot of the house tunes I’ve been hearing lately, yet nothing about this track really resonates with me on a deep level. The pads get a bit boring during the track and don’t really keep me engaged. I appreciate that this feels more like a vignette than an opus or a drawn out track, I just wish it had a bit more oomph to it. (7/10)

Marshall Stukes – The pads and the bass carry this track for me. I love when the pad opens up a bit towards the end, giving the song a sense of finale. The percussion carry a pretty simple rhythm with the vocals adding to that. I wonder if the flow would still be the same and what this track would be like without the vocals, as they don’t add anything, lyrically. All in all, it’s a great chill out track that would be suitable to mellow out to. (7.5/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – This intro has me hypnotized. The percussion is smooth and fits nicely with the vocals and bass. The vocals almost start to float further and further back before disappearing and the drums are impeccable. The loose timing still has a nice pocket to dance in. The overall vibe of this tune is set by the drums and they do their job well. (7/10)

Tchami – “Rainforest” (Valentino Khan Remix)

Aeron Premo – This track is strong for its wheelhouse and I do like the melody, but it is not something I would revisit regularly. The synths lean too mainstream for my liking. That’s about it. (5/10)

Alex Rubenstein – If I can imagine the DJ playing the track I’m listening to telling me to “put my fucking hands in the air” then I pretty much know instantly I’m not vibing. I totally see where this will get a dance floor rowdy, but I just won’t be on it. I’m not sure what else to say other than this just isn’t for me. (3/10)

Marshall Stukes – The piano progression is nice and clean, but I wish it were more in the forefront of the track. The build ups are basic and uninspired and left so much to be desired. The drop is nice, but not entirely original. The second drop’s added in the beginning were a great start, but I wanted more variety. It’s almost like the artist forgot to finish. (5/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – Valentino Khan hit Tchami’s “Rainforest” with his special sauce. I was in love with the original melodically (it was magical), and I love that there is some of that in the remix to remind us. This tune is a bit darker and dirtier in the sound. The drums are pumping and the texture on the bass is perfect. The big breakdown gets me every time. The momentum keeps going and is only stopped by a dropped kick and a sneaky fill. (8/10)

RTIK – “Dissolve”

Aeron Premo – Ok, this is the kind of techno I like, there’s glossy synth pads running throughout. The melody has a touch of Eurodance to it, and that makes me nostalgic as it is one of the first electronic genres I was exposed to growing up. I was looking for the arrangement to build up more, it gets repetitive after a while, but otherwise, this is an enjoyable techno track. I would recommend this to listeners who are just diving into the genre. (7/10)

Alex Rubenstein – The very beginning of this track had me excited. The kick was deep and the mood was brooding, but that all changes about 30 seconds in. I tend to prefer my techno without these big emotive synth swells. I can say that “Dissolve” is well produced and has a nice harmonious balance, it just didn’t really have an effect on me. (4/10)

Marshall Stukes – The production carries this track. The details in the use of reverb to move elements in the background are fantastic. The kick, when it’s on its own, is a bit out of place. I wasn’t feeling the use of reverb in this case, but the kick in tandem with other elements worked out nicely. The lead and the secondary synth play very nicely with each other, and the bass adds a much needed layer to the pads. (8/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – This is truly deep, and I am in love. The progression and arrangement is killer; this tune is just building and building. The lead feels so alive with all the movement it pulls off. Honestly though, the low end is what caught me from the start. The kicks in the intro are so deep, but still so clear. This song has got a journey of sounds. Make sure to listen all the way through to get the big drop on the back end. (9/10)

Init:fx:user – “Random Possibility”

Aeron Premo – I thought the production on this track was top-notch and the elements solid, but I was expecting a bit more from the arrangement. There were some synth lines around 4:30 that seemed to tease a turn in the arrangement, but it was for nought. For a seven minute track, I was anticipating a giant buildup and for the track to go off, but it just stayed the same throughout. Not really my thing, unfortunately. (5/10)

Alex Rubenstein – Honestly, I forgot what I was even listening to half way through this song. “Random Possibility” fulfills its name pretty well since this kinda sounds like the word ‘techno’ was just inputted into a random song generator. There isn’t much interesting going on here in the way of production or musicality. This one is a pass as well. (2/10)

Marshall Stukes – The lead in the second half of this song absolutely makes this track for me, and it’s introduction was a great change of pace. Instead of coming in with fanfare, it’s just there. I enjoyed the quicker lead change then switching back to the simpler progression, putting the listener on their toes. However, some of the production elements were a bit overused; I could have done without the brass swell every four bars. I wanted some attack on the kick, as I felt it was too filtered for some parts of the song. (7.75/10)

Justin Barini-Rivers – “Random Possibility” goes from zero to sixty, fast. The hi-hats come in and next thing you know there is a full on techno track formed and rolling. This feels like techno, but some of these other elements feel more progressive. Overall, it works so well. I am in awe of the sound design, especially the break into the next main section. This tune just keeps evolving. I am truly impressed with the skill in this production. (10/10)

The Galleria – “Stop & Go” – 8/10

Galcher Lustwerk – “Overpay, Overstay” – 7.6/10

RTIK – “Dissolved” – 7/10

Init:fx:user – “Random Possibility” – 6.2/10

Tachami – “Rainforest” (Valentino Khan Remix) – 5.2/10