The latest drop from California producer/beatmaker CTZN is whatcanisay?? – the second volume in his off the wall, left-field beat tape series.
Following up on 2016’s all instrumental whatcanisay? EP, this time CTZN returns with a full 14 track serving, featuring a hodgepodge of kooky beats, breaks, loops and abstract sample-based instrumentals, garnished with a sprinkling of rapp pals and inspirational characters from across time and space.
While the first volume’s design carried over Pete Cosmos‘ character illustration from thegoodnews. series, this time around CTZN tapped a local favorite, the Oakland based visual artist BROKE (PTV), known for his work on the ‘More Beer, Less Work’ series, as well as the Endless Canvas street art magazine.
Stream Below via Spotify:
Now playing on Spotify, Apple Music, TIDAL, AUDIUS, Soundcloud and all major streaming platforms worldwide.
Now available in the SM shop, expected ship date mid-March.
JAY3M: SLAP! is the new album from Oakland, CA producer, DJ & MC Joe Hardy, best known under the pseudonym Joe Mousepad.
We first crossed paths withJoe Mousepad, around 2008-9-10 or so. Those years can be a bit blurry, a lot was happening. Joe, and the guys from The Understudies Crew and Ear Peace Records, would pop up on the same lineups from time to time and we all always dug what each other were doing. He was one of the first people we saw using real time vocal effects on stage. Always handy with, and early to the party on a variety of tech odds and ends, Mousepad was among the first people we knew using the Teenage Engineering OP-1 as well as the PO-128 & 133 – not to mention his quiet proficiency on the classic SP-404 and a variety of Akai’s MPC drum machine/samplers.
A memorable bill we all shared at the time was Endless Canvas‘ SPECIAL DELIVERY 2012, a mega 3-floor art show, assembled in an abandoned ink factory near Oakland, CA, with music by Joe, Durazzo, Gee., CTZN, notpo3, Sean E Depp, JB Nimble, Cyberclops, Manifest707, Edgewize and others. (Short film about that here)
Years later, around 2017-18 we reconnected through mutual friend Jeep Ward, better known as DJ HALO (long time Fake Four Inc label manager, who’d collaborated with CTZN a couple years earlier on tracks for thegoodnews.). The meet would lead to a year+ residency between Joe, DJ HALO, CTZN & Edgewize, at the now-shuttered Oakland venue ‘The Rock Steady’. You could say those months together DJing, spinning demos, beats and unreleased gems from everyones private collections, would plant the seeds for Mousepad’s first record with Study Music Group .
SLAP! is the first in his JAY3M series, which serves as a vessel for instrumental explorations of varying shapes and sizes. His first proper release since 2017’s Play/Rec, comes in at a comfortably filling serving of eight tracks. Each with their own individual flavor, taking equal inspiration from both sample and synth, from boom bap, to chillout, synth wave, to trap and back again. The standout recurring element here, on a track to track basis, the thing that ties it all together and carries the vibe along nicely is SLAP!’s precision tuned drum work. Not your average loops or break beats. The programing and arrangement of Hardy’s drums on ‘JAY3M’ are top-notch, and serve as a perfectly constructed backbone for a collection that should play comfortably alongside any of your favorites from the stoney LA beat scene.
For the art direction on SLAP!, Mousepad tapped artist & designer Diego Guzman, aka @Diego_TheMaker. Guzman also shines here, with his mixed-media designs pulling inspiration and elements from a combination of vintage cartoons, iconography and spray cans – bridging the aesthetics of street art, graffiti & collaging with the ethos of fine art and print making, producing pieces that could just as easily live on the wall of your favorite gallery.
A limited pressing of deluxe SLAP! CDs are available for the highest fidelity listening experience. We know streaming platforms’ audio quality isn’t always coming in as lossless as some would prefer, so these ought to do the trick for any audiophiles out there.
Presented in a mini-LP style sleeve, with full color design and disc face, stuffed with liner notes, two bonus mini-prints from designer Diego Guzman, and a sticker pack including JAY3M, Joe Mousepad and Study Music Group designs.
SLAP! is now available to order direct from SM here.
Lucky Louie Blues Co. is an indie/alt rock band from New York.
‘The Silver Screen‘ is their latest release, and their first for Study Music Group. The track is a nuanced exploration of escapism, using the television as the point of focus. Musically lush and dynamic, high highs and low lows, unafraid to wear its emotion on the sleeve. Written and produced in collaboration with storied producer & engineer Doug Grean, who’s credits include work with such luminaries as STP, Velvet Revolver, DJ Hurricane, Crystal Method and more.
In November we dropped the main version, and for December we’ve just dropped the instrumental mix. Check out both versions below via Spotify, or wherever you get your music.
They band is currently at work on a full length, expect a remix and a visual for ‘The Silver Screen’ in the near future and new music in 2021.
Hear band leader Ross Mandel discuss the making of ‘The Silver Screen’ over on the Study Music Podcast.
Atosa‘s debut music video has arrived! Chrome is a collaboration with producer RIDL and featuring a guest verse from HMZA. – Single out now on streaming platforms, bandcamp, iTunes and Amazon. Watch the video below!
HMZA. dropped off a new project for the month, this time teaming with producer 5iLL for the gritty and lo-fi ‘Sketches’. The EP is brief, coming in at just two tracks, but after the high-energy opener ‘McFreedom’, the duo eases into the chilled out ‘Bruh Bruh Black Sheep’ with guest Chris Keys, who offers co-production and plays bass. They’ve also released a video for the latter, check it out below.
Welcoming singer/songwriter Atosa to Study Music Group!
Atosa’s debut single for SM is The Vapors (<—click there to preview/save it to your library).
The song showcases her r&b, electro, pop & hip hop influences, with an infectious retro synth groove served over crispy, booming drums from producer RIDL. Expect a few more singles in the coming months, followed by an album later in 2020.
California rapper & vocalist HMZA. is back again with ‘TOYS’, his 3rd single with producer RIDL, following their work together on HMZA.’s debut album ’23’. The track is a love song of sorts, pulling inspiration from indie and prog rock influences, set to laid back hip hop drums and accented with emotive guitars and moody synths, which balance perfectly with HMZA.’s introspective, melancholic lyrics.
Psychotropicoso is the new LP from California-based world music collective Zamico. New for October we’ve got the album on wax, and bundled along with other merch like zip up hoodies, turntable slipmats and sticker packs (vol. 1).
– Vinyl LPs are individually hand made and custom pressed in the US on black 12″ lathe-cut vinyl, with full color front/back sleeve.
– Zip-Up Hoodies are standard fit, printed on 8.5 oz. cotton/polyester blend fleece, with jersey-lined hood and split stitch, double needle sewing on all seams. 1×1 ribbing at cuffs & waistband with metal kissing zipper.
– Sticker Pack features a pair of designs from the psychotropicoso universe on 3″, full-color, digitally printed white vinyl. Highly durable stickers that will stand the test of time. **These stickers are limited edition, volume 1, in a series of 3.
PURCHASE 12″ VINYL + Hoodies + Merch Bundles HERE:Study Music Group Shop About Psychotropicoso… The album plants its roots in lush Latin American & Brazilian soundscapes, with each track branching out and exploring the connections of regional south american styles like orixas, cumbia, ijexa and afrobeat with other genres like reggae, psych rock, funk & hip hop. The band wrote and recorded the album in Oakland, CA between 2017-2019, with sessions led by singer/songwriter Andrew McKleroy, producer RIDL and a variety of session musicians along with additional vocalists Atosa and Zaire.
Front/back/inner design by Hermano Costa, who establishes a stunning, vibrant visual universe for the group.
Produced, Engineered & Mixed by RIDL. Mastered at Audible Oddities.
Executive Producers W. Foss, A. McKleroy, A. Riddle
Listen to S03 E06 – Wax Trippin’ w/ DJ Lex & Cooper on Apple.
The Study Music Podcast is back again and DJ Lex and Cooper from the Wax Trippin’ crew are here for our latest episode. We sat down with the two to talk everything from DJing to touring the world with hip hop legends, the Mixtape/CD era, the intricacies of curating a monthly party and we even get a crazy DMX story. Plus, CTZN talks a bit about the upcoming return of thegoodnews. (his cartoon band with @notpo3 @petecosmos) and RIDL has a new EP that’s just dropped!
Follow Em: @WaxTrippin_Oak @LexLevel @1atc
Follow us: @RIDLmusic @CTZNofficial
The Study Music Podcast covers quality independent music, art & events. Here you’ll find interviews, exclusive artist mixes, production and songwriting discussion, artist tips, tricks & techniques, music industry discussion, new music reviews, recommendations and more!
The Study Music Podcast can also be heard on RadioPublic, Breaker, Anchor.FM and PocketCasts.
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