Musical Discovery: ‘Don’t You Feel It’ by Sub Focus feat. ALMA (Sub Focus & 1991 Remix)

Whilst the original version of Don’t You Feel It showed that Sub Focus (real name Nick Douma) had adopted a more deep house style, it’s his latest remix with 1991 which takes us back to the drum-and-bass style of the DJ’s previous two albums.

It’s a remix fit for clubs and gigs. An atmospheric introduction calms the crowd whilst emphasis is placed  on ALMA’s vocals, then it quickly progresses into the DnB at the centre of the track itself. However, the balance between vocals and rhythm isn’t exactly 50/50, with the song eager to progress to the next hook: a loop of the line I need to be close to you which repeats one time too many. However, when combined with the lyric don’t you feel it too, the rhyme and vocal melody fit together seamlessly.

As for the beat drop, the first half sees drums underneath the original chorus, before a synth tune is introduced. It’s the light trill during this section which is a joy to listen to. The blending of euphoric and fast-paced music, although unequal, keeps the track moving forward in a satisfying rise-and-fall motion – getting listeners excited for the next drop whilst also offering the space to breathe in between.

As a whole, this new remix seems to suggest that Douwma hasn’t forgotten the drum-and-bass vibe of his sophomore album, Torus. Now, with a third album approaching, here’s hoping the DJ establishes the perfect balance between old and new which will keep long-time fans happy.

Musical Discovery: ‘Don’t You Feel It’ by Sub Focus feat. ALMA

It’s been nearly four years since Sub Focus (real name Nick Douwma) released his sophomore album, Torus, in September 2013. A drum-heavy collection of tracks perfect for the club, the record built upon the drum-and-bass style of his self-titled debut album. Yet now, the 35-year-old DJ appears to have spiced up his music a little. Nobody KnowsLove Devine and Lingua (feat. Stylo G) all contained edgy, deep house vibes with numerous musical effects. However, with his latest release – Don’t You Feel It (feat. ALMA) – the artist returns to somewhat familiar ground.

Of Douwma’s latest releases, Don’t You Feel It is the second single to feature credited vocalists. The first, which saw Stylo G take to the mic, involved more vocal distortion and a bouncier dance track. This time, with ALMA lending a helping hand, the song’s structure sees a return to the Torus days – with a clear voice (with no effects) and the build-up appearing in the chorus, not throughout.

With pulsing bass and simplistic rhythm guiding the song to the instrumental, the focus in the verses is very much on ALMA’s sassy, smooth and groovy vocals. As for the main melody itself, this is where long-term listeners can detect an evolution in Sub Focus’ style. Gone are the days of fluttering, euphoric dance, instead being replaced with a slightly tropical, heavy tone.

Whilst previous releases saw Douwma delve into a harsher club sound, Don’t You Feel It sees the DJ return to comfortable middle ground, with a strong vocalist and a progressive instrumental to boot.

Musical Discovery: ‘Final Song’ by MØ

For a long time, I’ve feared that you – the reader – think every song I review as part of this Musical Discovery series is a track which I like. Whilst this is true most of the time, I’ve always wanted to push myself and my writing, and pretending that I like all music (therefore, not being completely honest) isn’t something I want to do.

I say this because today’s Musical Discovery is different. Obviously, I discovered this track over the past seven days (on BBC Radio 1, in fact), but it’s not one I’d be desperate to share to the world and get excited about. Aside from the chorus, most of the track doesn’t really appeal to me. Nevertheless, The Final Song by MØ is today’s Musical Discovery.

My main issue or concern with Final Song is how similar it is to tracks which have already been released – both in terms of the music video and the song itself. For example, when I watched the above video, I couldn’t help but feel like it had a lot of similarities to that of the music video for Turn Back Time by Sub Focus. Then, when it comes to the music, the track’s calypso-style rhythm reminds me of David Guetta’s Euro 2016 track with Zara Larsson, This One’s For You. I also believe MØ’s vocals mimic the whiny, almost American cheerleader style of Charlie XCX, which I’m not really a fan of.

For a song with a driving drum rhythm in the chorus, I think this beat needs to be apparent throughout the track. However, in the verses, we hear MØ’s mellow voice, with only a few backing instruments involved. So, when the bridge (which begins with “So hear me out before you say the night is over“) sees MØ switch into a louder vocal style, this – along with the sudden introduction of a calypso drum beat – can take the listener by surprise.

With an almost tropical feel, Final Song definitely fits into the trends we’re seeing in the music industry at the moment. However, with a track that flickers between soft melodies and a powerful chorus, it can be very confusing to listen to.

What do you think of Final Song by MØ? Do you share the same views as me, or do you like the track? Comment below!

Liam 

Weekly Update: Home for Christmas and a Musical Rediscovery

First of all, I should apologise for the lack of posting. If you’ve read my previous Weekly Update, you’ll know that I am in the middle of university assignments.

At the moment, I have one final essay to write – due in on Monday – before I can relax for Christmas. So I’ve been working on that this week, and that’s why I’ve been missing posts – sorry!

However, this week has also seen me finish my first term/semester! It’s been a blast. The course and Lincoln are both fantastic, and my course mates and flatmates are awesome people. I’m looking forward to the next semester!

Lastly, I noticed on my laptop that I was missing an album. A while back, I had bought Torus by Sub Focus. However, after switching from my old, 2012 Acer laptop (which now relies on the charger being plugged in to even switch on) to my MacBook, the Sub Focus album was left behind!

Thankfully I’ve managed to find it and transfer it back onto my Mac. I also gave it a listen and I’d forgotten how great his music is! It’s definitely worth checking out if you’re a fan of electronic music and drum and bass!

How was your week? Comment below!

Liam

Musical ReDiscovery: ‘Control’ by Matrix and Futurebound

This discovery came after browsing the charts. I remember this song late last year, but it was one of those songs I stupidly overlooked…

Some commenters on the track say how similar it is to Sub Focus’ Tidal Wave. Personally, I think it could be agreed that it is similar, but it explores a far different melody. The drum and bass chorus is completely different as well.

Also, Max Marshall’s vocals are brilliant in this song, and fit the theme perfectly, allowing for a perfect balance of different emotions and soul. Overall, this adds to the essence of a great drum and bass song.

What do you think about the song? Comment below!

Liam

Sub Focus teases new single, ‘Close’

Using an image to tease fans, Sub Focus today posted the cover work for his new single, Close on Facebook and Twitter today.

The artwork for the track was published on the social networking sites Facebook and Twitter shortly after 4pm today.

The future single will be the DJ’s sixth track from his second album, Torus, to become a single. Previous singles from the album include the massive tracks: Tidal Wave, Endorphins and his most recent release, Turn Back Time.

The track itself features singer MNEK, known for providing vocals to Gorgon City’s track, Ready for Your Love.

No release has been announced as of yet.

Liam

Sub Focus’ Torus (FULL REVIEW)

Now, I know some of you may remember my previous review of the album, however, that was based purely on track previews and not that of the tracks in full. So now that I have bought the whole album, I can review the album and create a bigger picture of the album.

My Review:

Torus, the latest album from electronic DJ Sub Focus, is a huge success. The 13-track standard album combines a wonderful variety of music with a diverse range of vibes ranging from traditional pop, to powerful drum and bass, to heavy grunge. Collaborations from musicians such as Alice Gold, Alpines and Alex Clare amongst many others are the icing on the cake for the track, providing extra essence to the melodies that Sub Focus creates.

There’s my review! Despite it being rather short, I cannot put into words how good the album is. Each track is unique in it’s own right, and for fans of Sub Focus who have had to eagerly anticipate the release of this album, it is well worth the wait.

Overall, it’s a great album, and I’ve been listening to it all the time since I’ve got it!

Liam