The FutureSounds staff writers are back to share their top tracks of the moment
ZAYAZ – ‘Far Away Feeling’ [self released]
Sometime My Pet Flamingo stable artist, Zayaz, returns to his nostalgic roots with ‘Far Away Feeling’, which sounds like his classic 2017/18 output with a ’23 update. The track gives me all the feels, as a gentle Chic-style rhythm guitar dances with distorted synch chords before a haunting soul vocal sample enters, echoing forever in the mix. Toronto’s prolific son always blends, deconstructs, and challenges vaporwave, synthfunk, edm, and outrun – with his signature production; but this track embodies why I fell in love with his sound. Instant purchase for me, and I hope this features on an upcoming collection. I need this on tape.
Phil Gerus – ‘Out Of The Silly’ [self-released]
This single from Phil Gerus is a sumptuous piece of dayglo boogie. Simultaneously clever and sexy, this gloopy sidechain jam activated the same receptors as when I heard Jai Paul’s ‘Jasmine‘ for the first time. Gerus describes the music as sounding ‘raw and chaotic’, but also that it took a lot of time and serious surgery to stitch together.
The Algorithm (and his own Bandcamp tagging) ties him to vaporwave – Spotify suggests 18 Carat Affair and VAPERROR as similar artists. And there is definitely a shared production aesthetic as well as a career progression from making bootleggy edits to self-sampledelica.
A little closer to home, an act on Timeslave has started a new alias making similarly purple pop experiments under the name version – their first release being the gorgeous ‘surplace’ on Flamingo Funk vol. 3.
Luther Vandross – ‘Never Too Much’ (NEVER DULL Remix) [Self Released]
Prolific remix specialist Never Dull returns this month with a high energy disco edit of Luther’s 1981 classic ‘Never Too Much’.
Primed for a summer of DJ sets, this remix sits perfectly in the playground of disco and soul cuts that are given the Future Funk treatment. Further to its credit, Luther’s vocal is not trifled with – his effortless tones matched perfectly with a punching beat that is reminiscent of many reimagined city pop tracks that have come out of adjacent scenes in the recent past.
Get on your dancing shoes, you sexy little swine….
Overcrest – ‘Upward‘ [Self Released]
Once again I have the pleasure of ignoring my brief of writing about new to new tracks for this week’s Ecco Chamber because my little find comes from 2020.
The Spotify algorithm has been punching above its weight of late and it has introduced me to a lovely little electronic number by the artist Overcrest. ‘Upward’ feels like the soundtrack to the fact i’ve travelled forward a few hundred years to a Californian beachfront to find that the world hasn’t self-imploded and our world is in the best state it’s ever been. The future is clean & organised, everyone is getting along, the weather is pristine and i’m just floating along on whatever the heck it is i’m flying on in the year 2523. Everything is just perfect.
All this positivity comes from the really uplifting progression in the opening of the track and it keeps high levels of serenity throughout. I guess the best way to describe how I feel when I listen to it is ‘at peace’. Fans of artists like Forhill, Emil Rottmayer and Hotel Pools (basically anyone on the Stratford Ct label for that matter) will absolutely love this track.
Crozet – ‘You And I’ [Self Released]
It takes almost a minute for ‘You & I’ to reveal its intent. Building slowly, it calls you from your passive state. “Join us” it implores you; “we’re running away”.
But where to? Somewhere warm and cozy, somewhere nostalgic. The whole album reminds me of John Hughes soundtracks and summer days spent exploring – not spent staring, wistfully through the office window from my desk.
Somewhere along the line things get complicated and serious, responsibilities take over. The endless optimism of youth starts to evaporate, and all that’s left is memories. ’Running Time’ gives you a 45 minute escape from all that.
It’s not strictly speaking new, but Crozet’s classic chillpop album – Running Time – is getting a vinyl drop to mark the latest Bandcamp Friday. Head to Midnight Mannequin for more details.
Enzo Van Baelen