Tag Archives: kingdom

How Kingdom turned “happy accidents” into ecstatic collaborations on Tears In The Club

Tears in the Club is – if anything – an evocative album title. Are those tears of joy, an outpouring of emotion in a safe space; a state of ecstasy, chemically assisted or not? Or are they tears of pain, when that safe space becomes violent and dangerous, or when those substances turn our body chemistry sour? That duality has long been key to Kingdom’s music, where pneumatic beats and metallic synths coalesce into icy soundscapes shattered by sultry R&B vocals. Depending on his mood, he’s been able to push his tracks either towards agony or ecstasy: hearing ‘Stalker Ha’ at the peak hour is a drastically darker experience than hearing the Kelela-assisted ‘Bank Head’.”

Read more at FACT Magazine.

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The underground kings of Fade to Mind

If Night Slugs was the finest label of 2010, a case could be made that sister label Fade to Mind wore the crown last year. While not matching the output of the prolific London imprint in quantity, Fade to Mind has made a mark by documenting the most exciting developments in American club music.

The brainchild of LA’s Kingdom and Texas producer Prince William, Fade to Mind is more than a label: it’s a collective of like-minded artists who produce club music that maintains the rough edges of its underground origins. Fade to Mind doesn’t seem interested in “mainsteaming” these cultures as much as uniting underground scenes from LA to New York and all points in between.

After releasing a limited-edition, bootleg mix CD, Fade to Mind’s first official release was the superb Timesup EP by standard bearers Nguzunguzu. The EP is an exploration of mutated bass music that oscillates between sensual and creepy. The video for standout “Water Bass Power” features the off-kilter, aquatic weirdness that defines seapunk.

New Jersey’s MikeQ has become synonymous with the the recent re-emergence and popularity of ballroom music. Fittingly, his first major release, Let It All Out, was Fade to Mind’s second. The EP is an introduction to vogue staples like the Ha beat and speakers like Kevin JZ Prodigy; it even includes a remix by genre originator Vjuan Allure. Continuing to delve into ballroom, the label just dropped a free EP from Massachusetts producer Rizzla, who, along with spinning the Ha (“Badmind Ha”), takes on tropical rave (“Psychoton”). In true ballroom style, “Dick” is a sexed up club track based on a Lil’ Kim sample that you can figure out from the title.

[wpaudio url=”/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/03 DICK.mp3″ text=”Rizzla – Dick” dl=1]

Fade to Mind hasn’t stopped there, also releasing an EP by the label’s lone European (for now): Gremino. The Finnish producer’s Let’s Jack is a percussive, aggressive take on techno and grime. The breakbeats on “Lush” shake foundations and the midrange pulses on the title track are haunting. Rounding out the collective’s lineup are artists Total Freedom, Cedaa, Clicks & Whistles, and Fatima Al Qadiri, collaborators who will hopefully be releasing music through the label soon.

Want to hear what Fade to Mind is all about without going to their LA-based monthlies? These twin mixes from the label heads do the trick. Just rest assured you’ll be hearing more from Fade to Mind sooner than later.

[wpaudio url=”http://fadetomind.net/audio/ftm_mix_001.mp3″ text=”Prince William – Fade to Mind Mix 001″ dl=1]

Future Grooves: Kingdom

Kingdom is a producer that epitomizes my recent obsession, a trend I’ve coined rhythm and bass. The Brooklyn-based producer draws on all types of electronic music – dubstep, UK funky, juke, and kuduro, to name a few – along with the sultry vocals and melodic bent of R&B. With releases on leading labels Night Slugs and Fools Gold, along with a pick on the Trouble & Bass-curated Sounds of NYC EP, Kingdom finds himself at the forefront of a music revolution.

His debut single, the wobbly raver “Mind Reader,” received remixes from Night Slugs label heads Bok Bok and L-Vis 1990, who both altered the song’s tempo to reveal different aspects of its character. Bok Bok’s take is slower, putting Shyvonne’s vocals in the forefront; the remix by L-Vis amps up the song’s already high energy.

Kingdom returned the favor by releasing That Mystic on their label; the EP is one of the highlights of their young catalog. Under the scattershot percussion and foreboding synths are deep grooves that dare the listener not to dance. There are even surprising moments that lift the veil, like the breakdown of the otherwise unrelenting “Bust Broke” that pretty clearly samples Faith Evans’ “Soon As I Get Home.”

[wpaudio url=”https://postcultural.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/bustbroke.mp3″ text=”Kingdom – Bust Broke” dl=0]

As alluded to earlier, Kingdom’s love affair with R&B doesn’t stop at a lone Faith Evans sample. He dabbles with baby making music on his remix of Usher’s “Appetite,” and his mix for XLR8R ends with a brilliant mash-up of Girl Unit’s “Every Time” and Ciara’s “Ride.” The latter was just released as a Night Slugs white label, “Ride It Every Time.”

While he can get smooth with rhythm and bass, Kingdom also has a sharper edge. Songs like “Uptown Buck” (on the aforementioned Sounds of NYC compilation) and “Hottest in America” revel in programmed drums, electronic chirps, and vocal slices. With the company he keeps, it’s no surprise that Kingdom makes dance music for all occasions.

Download: Kingdom – Hottest in America
Download: Kingdom – XLR8R Podcast