LA club night Low End Theory has, for the last seven or eight years, been the epicenter of instrumental hip-hop in the US, having helped push forth the careers of Flying Lotus and his whole Brainfeeder crew, the Glitch Mob, Daedelus, and founder Daddy Kev’s Alpha Pup label. The LA beat scene, as it’s become known, would very likely be a different thing altogether were it not for Low End Theory, which affectionately takes its name from a Tribe Called Quest album. Now, nearly a decade after its inauguration, the club night is throwing its first festival, which will take place June 14 and 15 at the Echoplex in Los Angeles.
Hey, it’s Monday morning—so it’s probably a good time to take stock of the weekend and decide if you’re actually partying too hard. Cosmo (of all mags) has put together a little guide on making said determination (yes, it’s pretty tongue-in-cheek), so once you’ve sussed out your partying problem, keep on reading for a look at dance music’s best businessman-DJs and a whole lot more.
Since the 2011 release of his genre-blending Complex Housing on Friends of Friends, Paul Salva has been gaining traction and building momentum at an enviable rate. Admittedly, last year was a big one for the Los Angeles-based producer, as he was made a host of the BBC’s In DJs We Trust and his collaborative remix with RL Grimes of Kayne West’s “Mercy” garnered huge praise from leading DJs like Diplo, A-Trak, Skream, and Benga—and the LA radio station Power 106 added it into rotation. Not bad for an old-fashioned bootleg remix.
“Nissim” evokes images of smoke-thickened rooms with dusty floors shared by musicians behind both traditional Middle Eastern instruments and the latest digital sampling hardware. Bridging two worlds into its soundscapes, GLK tells us a bit more about it.
Om Unit isn’t a name you’re likely to hear about from listeners of entry-level electronic music. The media-molded view of glowsticking, college care-frees under laser-lit ceilings is not what Om Unit supplies. He undoubtedly leans more towards the “electronic music” side of the spectrum that he does to what is traditionally thought of as “dance music.” Om Unit’s Jim Coles first hit the spotlight as turntablist DJ 2Tall, winning the DMC championships (check some video of that here) back in 2003. Given that, his background differs from most producers in the electronic music world, but it seems to aid in his creativity as Om Unit’s catalog offers very little to criticize with its tendency to indulge in the type of complex layers associated with more “intelligent” productions, while lacing his work with the melodies and scales familiar to most radio listeners. It’s a balance that most producers will search for their whole careers.