Archive | December, 2012

on deck: grizmatik at basslights, hampton, va

6 Dec

For the past few years, both Griz and Gramatik have been at the top of my (and many other EDM fans’) list of favorite funky fresh DJs. Both had a flair for the fawnk, which is always a welcome respite from the deluge of bass-heavy DJs making their rounds on the internets.

Let’s start with Gramatik. He’s repped by Pretty Lights record label, and is arguably the most legit DJ in their lineup. For me, at least, Gramatik lends credibility to the Pretty Lights label, rather than the label lending credibility to Gramatik. After all, I believe Gramatik had already released his wildly successful “Street Bangerz Vol. 1″ by the time he signed with Pretty Lights Music, and his sound was already well established from the get-go. Despite his Slovenian roots, Gramatik has a solid grasp on American jazz, blues, and funk that he weaves throughout his mixes, which meander without getting dull.

Griz, on the other hand, is a bit less of a veteran. In fact, he didn’t drop his first full album until September 2012 (after a strong presence on ze blogs for some time), but the result was worth the wait. Griz gets down with the funky stuff too, but his mixes are a little dirtier and bass heavy than Gramatik’s. He also incorporates a bit more soul, which definitely contributes to the toned-down feel of his stuff, even though the sounds are intense.

But then- THEN – came the collaboration that surpasses the sum of it’s parts: Grizmatik. That’s right- this fall, these two wunderkins teamed up, but their heads and tables together, and dropped some supa fresh ish on us this fall. Their collab, with the appropriately mishmashed title “Digital Liberation Is Mad Freedom” (i.e., Griz’ Mad Liberation plus Gramatik’s #digitalfreedom), is the most exciting team work of 2012. I’m always impressed whenever two extremely talented solo musicians are able to produce something together that sounds seamless- it doesn’t sound like either one was trying to push their sound in front of the other. Rather, the resulting tracks are a perfect blend of what I love about Griz and what I love about Gramatik, all in one nice musical package.

The two have only done limited performances together as a duo, which makes me especially exciting for Basslights, the upcoming electro extravaganza in Hampton, VA on 12/28-12/29. The lineup doesn’t expressly list “Grizmatik,” but both artists are performing solo- and I can’t help but assume they’ll be hitting us with some epic tag teaming during the two day festival. Not to mention that they’ll be sharing the stage with oh, you know, just Bassnectar, Pretty Lights, A-Trak, and Big G. Cotdamn. Cheers to peeping New Years Eve a few days early.