You already saw our list of our favorite songs of January to March 2014, but the tunes don’t stop. This week’s Tracking, the weekly series in which we discuss our current favorite songs, features music from Disclosure & Friend Within, How To Dress Well, Twin Shaodw, tUnE-yArDs, SZA, Kyla La Grange, Parquet Courts, Allie X and Todd Terje.
Disclosure & Friend Within, “The Mechanism”
Disclosure’s 2013 debut LP Settle was an anomaly. It broke rules. It didn’t really line up with anything similar to it because it didn’t really care to. It was just deep-house enough not to be explicitly UK garage, and vice versa. And by boldly adding just a dash of Benga-era dubstep, Settle demonstrated without a stutter or a misstep how to properly combine elements of what came before you to illustrate what lies ahead.
This amalgamation of European house allowed Disclosure to develop a recipe for helplessly catchy dance music that just so happened to be universally understood. It uncovered the appeal of garage and deep house without ever being overzealous about either. It exposed J Dilla as the absent mentor he was always meant to be. And it established brilliant on-record musical identities based entirely almost upon the fact that they do this shit live. Guy and Howard are consistently creating in real time music that might as well have been specifically designed for on-stage playback.
It’s a bold move, and as such, it has garnered some fairly serious acclaim for the brothers Lawrence. Admittedly, it’s hard to believe they’ve had any time to themselves, let alone for the studio. But this time around, they enlisted some help. Collaboration with UK producer Friend Within (yet another name you should get comfortable telling your friends about), has produced, “The Mechanism.”
“The Mechanism,” is interesting, because you can almost hand-point to the elements of the track that belong to each party. Friend Within’s flair for staccato vocal samples meshes beautifully with Disclosure’s punchy, syncopated signature. An elastic bass wobble floats like ash throughout its entirety. Even Eric Thomas, the Hip-Hop Preacher responsible for the countless number of victims who lose their minds every time someone plays, “When A Fire Starts To Burn,” makes his presence known.
What ensues is, “The Mechanism,” a tightly constructed, perfectly curated dance tune that almost involuntarily evokes a head-bob. If you’re reading this on Friday afternoon, I dare you to unplug your headphones. [Austin Reed]
Allie X, Discosure, Featured, Friend Within, Kendrick Lamar, Kyla La Grange, Parquet Courts, SZA, Todd Terje, Tracking, Tune-Yards, Twin Shadow