Category Archives: 2018

The Difference Machine (Atlanta, GA)

The Difference Machine

Photo by Brannon Boyle

The Difference Machine - It's Alive (feat. Paten Locke)

“[A] masterpiece of beat construction, with Conspiracy pushing his classic booming drums and triumphant horns through a gritty, psychedelic filter, but DT has rarely sounded as rugged as he does here; his lyrical barrage is menacing.”

— Latest Disgrace

There are many planes of consciousness, but in the one that we call the here and the now, The Difference Machine are a psychedelic hip-hop group from Atlanta, Georgia. Since 2011, they’ve been at the vanguard of the city’s underground scene, creating gritty, mind-expanding anthems that explore the unifying lines between conscious rap and abstract soundscapes, the dividing wall between the blood-stained realities of twenty-first century urban America and the sublime mysticism of an opaque universe.

The group’s latest sonic attack, The 4th Side of the Eternal Triangle, bumps and soars, breathing additional fire and compositional daring into their already formidable style. Your guide on this stark metaphysical journey is rapper Dustin Teague whose scathing cultural surveys and dimensional truths help give shape to producer Dr. Conspiracy’s warped beats and nuclear mystical trash alchemy. Rounding out the group’s songwriting core is longtime drummer Radley Fricker and DJ Obeah who handles most of the cuts on the record. Meanwhile, Cyrus Shahmir, formerly of psych rock cosmonauts the N.E.C., was recruited to conjure his hallucinogenic atmospheres and shamanistic vibes on guitar and keys. The result of this collaborative effort is a more expansive sound architecture layered in primal energy and head-swimming celestial sophistication.

Having spent the last few years smashing stages all over the U.S. alongside Run the Jewels, Homeboy Sandman, Ghostface Killah & Adrian Younge, Deltron 3030, Shabazz Palaces, Chuck D, and fellow Atlanta rebel rousers the Black Lips, the Difference Machine find themselves well-prepared — mentally, emotionally, spiritually — for this moment. Boasting a dozen genre-bending tracks and a string of guests that includes Homeboy Sandman, Curtis Harding, Stacy Epps, and Paten Locke, this is undoubtedly the group’s defining work to date. Both visceral and cerebral, the album is as much a clenched fist to those who would practice hate and intolerance as it is an outstretched hand to those willing to embrace our universal connectedness and the power of the transcendental. In a music culture dominated and defined by an ever-uniforming sameness, The Difference Machine remains a middle finger to the demons of comfort and complacency. This is the stuff of dreams and nightmares, a dynamic and evolutive vibration drifting through the abyss of space. There are many planes of consciousness, but few that feel this urgent and profoundly radiant. Listen with care.

Links

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729 (Birmingham, AL)

729

729 - 888hz

“729 is the new project from Birmingham artists Ozu and Erthling. While the two have been in each other’s orbits for a while, this marks their first official collaboration together. They start things off with an EP appropriately titled Greetings..”

— Scratched Vinyl

What happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object? Some unions are forged in fire, but even those pale in comparison to the potential of the aesthetically-pleasing duo based out of Birmingham. Comprised of Bessemer-bred lyricist OZU and producer-extraordinaire Erthling., the group’s hard-hitting beats are combined with lines and rhymes that entice the mind… Some might call it divine, but they just refer to it with three digits: 729.

With monthly EPs rolling out for your consumption via streaming services, the content from the two isn’t slowing down anytime soon.

Links

Website

D. Horton (Columbus, MS)

D. Horton

D. Horton - Lose Control ft. Josias

“Horton is definitely a lyricist and a storyteller, and in a lot of ways a teacher. He puts his heart and soul into what he creates. You can’t just skim through a D. Horton track, you have to let the music marinate. It’s elevation music.”

— The Double Scoop

A soulful singer, songwriter and rapper, D. Horton is fueled by his desire to change the world and push the boundaries of brilliance.

Garnering comparisons ranging from hip-hop legends such as Andre’ 3000 & Tupac to the architects of today’s sound such as J. Cole and Drake, D. Horton’s sound can range from intense and energetic to reflective and melodic. He thrives putting lyrics at the forefront of hip-hop again.

Links

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
Soundcloud
YouTube

BassHead Jazz (Mobile, AL)

BaseHead Jazz

BaseHead Jazz - Fuck'em Up

Alabama is known for a lot of things. Football, a historic role is the Civil Rights movement, the list goes on. One thing Alabama isn’t known for, however, is progressive Hip-Hop. The newly-formed collective BassHead Jazz is out to change that. Consisting of Nu Nation artists Ottie James and No Suh Foster as well as new comer Baby, BassHead Jazz looks to change how Alabama Hip-Hop is viewed nationwide.

While taking their name from the classic Cee-Lo song, their influences exceed solely jazz to include a wide range of funk, soul, blues, R&B and Hip-Hop. Think Dungeon Family meets The Soulquarians meets the Fugees. The collective formed in 2017 upon Ottie’s return from NOLA and No Suh’s return from New York. Since then, they have been diligently working on their eponymous debut album, scheduled to release later this year.

No Suh Foster has shared stages with Big KRIT, Nesby Phips, and Big Rube to name a few, while Ottie James has shared stages with Curren$y, Big KRIT, and Cee-Lo Green.

Links

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube

G.I. Magus (Birmingham, AL)

G.I. Magus

G.I. Magus - Go Home

Whether he is rocking the stage to tracks or joined by a band, G.I. Magus brings nonstop energy and interaction to every crowd and stage. He has continued to bring passion and positive messages with a blend of hip hop and soul that is sure to leave the audience uplifted and motivated.

Links

Website
YouTube

TiDUS (New Jersey)

TiDUS

TiDUS - No Limitations

“His sound, style, nonconformist attitude, and tendency to go with weird, spacey sounds and topics might have had him restricted to the underground in years past, but in the context of today’s new class of hip-hop, he fits in perfectly.”

— Complex

Influenced by Goth, hip hop, Gregorian chants, the African Diaspora, and something beyond, TiDUS is noted for a nurturing sound that sits in its own genre. The New Jersey native’s music speaks to the soul’s journey. He calls it “Higher-Self Music” and fans say it helps them navigate hardships. A shuffle through his Spotify profile reveals a prolific artist, who, as of the last two years, releases projects as chapters in his “self discovery” series. The series currently has three chapters and captures his sense of time and place in the universe, through a lens that can be worn by anyone seeking to do the same.

Links

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Instagram
Soundcloud
Spotify
YouTube

Airpark (Nashville, TN)

Airpark

Photo by Madison Fuller

Airpark - Yours Till I Die

“In a world where style so often comes before substance, Airpark has come along to remind us that we can have an abundance of both. Achtung pop bands: This is how it’s done.”

— Nashville Scene

Airpark makes forward-thinking pop music.

Inspired by melody and groove-heavy percussion, Michael Ford, Jr. and Ben Ford debuted the duo in 2016. Their new musical approach was born after The Apache Relay, a six-piece band armed with a thick, wall-of-sound approach, quietly called it quits.

Airpark’s musical evolution targets the feet and the head. It’s pop music for thinkers. It’s the sound of two brothers continuing to create art with little outside help, pairing their own ambition with musical chops to match.

Links

Website
Facebook
Twitter
Instagram

CHEW (Atlanta, GA)

CHEW

Photo by Oath

CHEW - Fine Accoutrement

“Atlanta trio CHEW never fail to go all out. Their music is marked by a boundless energy and an aggressive willingness to both genre jump and experiment with timing, pacing, and rhythm… like a poppier, less abstract Battles.”

— Immersive Atlanta

Brett Reagan (guitar/electronics), Snare-uh Wilson (drums) and Brandon Pittman (bass) make up CHEW, the psychedelic outfit from Atlanta, Ga.

This project features 3 familiar faces of the Atlanta music scene. These humans have mutated into this trio after playing with bands in the city for years.

We use a sampler and analog synth mashed with live instrumentation to pull influences from all things psychedelic. The result is a hypnotic, electronic, spacewave experience.

Links

Website
Bandcamp
Facebook
Twitter
Instagram

A Drug Called Tradition (Atlanta, GA)

A Drug Called Tradition

A Drug Called Tradition - Depression Stone

“A lethal dose of fuzzed-out reverb over steady grooves that balance soul, Southern rock, and mind-bending reverb and distortion.”

— Creative Loafing

Atlanta trio A Drug Called Tradition was formed in late 2014, after a brief interim following the dissolution of the long-running heavy psych outfit Abby Gogo. Singer/guitarist Bon Allinson took some time to experiment, bringing together elements of psych, shoegaze, soul, and rock ‘n’ roll — and with that, a new sound was born.

Based in Atlanta, the band is comprised of Bon Allinson (vocals/guitar), Asha Lakra (vocals/bass), and Puma Navarro (drums). The trio debuted with its Medicine Music LP via Psych Army Intergalactic in July 2017. They recorded the album in Water Valley, Mississippi with producer Matt Patton (Drive-By Truckers, Dexateens) and engineer Bronson Tew at Dial Back Sound. The album was well-received in Atlanta and beyond, gaining traction at live shows and in the press. Tracks from Medicine Music were premiered in Stomp and Stammer and New Noise, and the album was ranked number 19 in Creative Loafing‘s Top 30 Albums of the Year.

ADCT has since shared a stage with acts such as Matt Hollywood of Brian Jonestown Massacre, Lee Bains III & the Glory Fires, and Acid Mothers Temple. The trio appeared in the second annual Project Pabst Festival in October 2017, alongside the notorious Iggy Pop as well as Peaches and Dinosaur, Jr. The group played Far Out Nashville in May 2018.

Links

Website
Bandcamp
Facebook
Instagram

In Snow (Birmingham, AL)

In Snow

In Snow - Rails

“In Snow’s music doesn’t need words to tell a story. The band hopes through their music listeners find their own story and experience a sense of rest and “a way to cope to be honest.”

— B-Metro

In Snow is a four-piece instrumental outfit from Birmingham, Alabama. Their sound grows from the seeds of experimental post-rock, and continues to branch further out in terms of genre. Their most recent release entitled Four Lines came out through Step Pepper Records in March of 2017. They are about to begin the recording process again in the very near future.

Links

Bandcamp
Facebook
ReverbNation