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December 3, 2023

FRESH OFF THE BEAT End of Year

Written by Meagen Surowiecki on December 3, 2023

It’s time to round out the year with the hottest dance music releases of 2023. Heavy hitters that belong to top music producers and DJs in today’s scene. This edition of FRESH OFF THE BEAT takes an in-depth look at each track from the artist's point of view. Consisting of this edition with upcoming talent who are rapidly growing and making the transition from underground to mainstream. The final editions of FRESH OFF THE BEAT will be released rapidly as artists bang out their final new tracks before the New Year.


Steve Lawler - ‘The More I Love You’ featuring Aquarius Heaven

He is taking it back to the old school with a sexy house riff. The British producer and DJ and label owner Steve Lawler releases his new single ‘The More I Love You’ featuring Aquarius Heaven, out now via Dirtybird Records. Making his Dirtybird debut Lawler got his inspiration from the Pezzner and Aquarius Heaven’s 2018 collaboration ‘We Are Not Who We Are’ on Get Physica by working with Aquarius to re-record a fresh new original vocal for this release. The track is of rhythm that screams the style of Lawler, adding the rich Dirtybird percussion. Lawler breaks all the rules in music and crafts a hypnotic melody to the vocals.

My creative side in the studio means I always purposefully write something that isn’t really out there, the complete opposite to copying music that’s trendy. I follow my own path, meaning the branded camps of the world can’t fit me into any genre, but I have to be authentic in everything I do or I simply don’t want to do it, a rebel through and through. My integrity is not for sale. This track is for the rebels out there.” – Steve Lawler


Sgt Slick - Just Keep Walking (SYNCIA & Soul Central Remix)

This remix showcases vibrant drum percussion with a dark texture of elements of their sound style. The Original mix, which first started as a bootleg now has the official stamp of approval from the iconic Australian band eventually earning a full release on the renowned Neon Records. With its sleek and modern production, it received a massive response when it first played at the annual IMS Conference in Ibiza this summer and premiered on Pete Tong’s BBC Radio 1 show. This collaboration between Soul Central and Syncia comes from two sides of the dance music spectrum to create this masterpiece signal which will be an instant chart-topper. Perfectly capturing the original mix, promising to ignite the dancefloors with its raw and powerful energy. It showcases the collaboration of two powerful musical forces with distinct styles. Out on a strictly limited promo only, this will become a surefire weapon for DJs across the globe.


Haywyre - “White Lie” [Monstercat]

After two years, Martin Vogt better known as Haywyre returns with his first release and delivers his latest Monstercat single White Lie’. The new release is fueled by the popular electronic imprint boasting deep-cut lyrics and striking vocals demonstrating the craft of art. He is making this an ultimate comeback to the electronic scene with this killer release. The driving melody leads to an emotional breakdown of every chord. It features Hawywyre’s diverse production fusing a blend of piano, bass, and clever vocals with a monumental return to Monstercat.  

On the new release, Haywyre shares, “I'm proud to finally get my first track in two years into the world. Especially one like 'White Lie’, which I feel shows a glimpse into where the Haywyre project is going."


HILOMATIK - ‘Waking Life (A New Dawn) (feat. Michael Ekow)’ [HI-LO]

In less than one year, HILOMATIK has developed a reputation for being one of the most exciting labels in dance music. Launched in January 2023 by label founder and producer/DJ/tastemaker extraordinaire HI-LO, the label's output has included high-powered releases such as ‘RIDE OR DIE’ (w/ Eli Brown), ‘Bonzai,’ ‘Brazil,’ ‘Arpeggio’ (w/ Space 92), ‘Pura Vida EP’ (the debut release on HILOMATIK which also received a standout remix from Wehbba). HILOMATIK releases consistently reach the top of the Beatport Techno Charts and find their way into the sets of the world's finest DJs, including Adam Beyer, Solomun, Carl Cox, Tiësto, John Summit, Joris Voorn, David Guetta, Eli Brown, and Patrick Topping to name a few. HI-LO’s latest release, ‘Waking Life (A New Dawn) (feat. Michael Ekow)’ bridges the gap between UK garage and techno. UK rapper Michael Ekow cements the release, spitting lyrics around an intense instrumental. It’s a track with its heart in the darkest of clubs but with broad appeal. 

HI-LO describes the track's origin: ‘This resulted in the instrumental track I named ‘Waking Life UK FM Bass Raw Techno Vibe.’ When I returned home again, I developed the track a bit more, and I sent it to my publisher in the Netherlands and told her I could see a British rapper on this track. She then ran into the singer/rapper Michael Ekow at a bar in Amsterdam through a mutual friend, and when she heard his voice/accent, she immediately thought of my track, so she sent it to him. Then Michael wrote some lyrics around that ‘waking life’ working title and recorded some really dope vocals that worked very well over the track, and the rest is history :)’


Ellis Moss - ‘Calling’ [Expert’s Only]

He is one of the fastest-rising stars in electronic music of today’s era, Ellis Moss makes his debut release on John Summit’s Expert’s Only imprint for his powerhouse banger  ‘Calling.’. Moss established himself as a sought-after producer by captivating house music heavyweights to play his 2021 single ‘The Shake’. He earned huge support from industry pioneers  Danny Howard, Mark Knight, and Gorgon City. The catchy banger sets the perfect environment for all dance floors, pumping up the crowd with a vibrant and energetic beat and bassline. Filled with rich magnetic and clever lyrics making it’s true home to one of the most popular and widely successful house music labels today. 


Kitty Amor - “Solitude” [Mahaba Music]

Pioneer of Afro House, tastemaker, and trailblazing DJ and producer, Kitty Amor launches her imprint Mahaba Music as part of the Defected family of labels. She debuts with her own production ‘Solitude’ which has been getting extreme plays and positive feedback since the recent release. Kitty Amor takes the reigns to demonstrate the sonic intentions of the label. To express the global influences of an ever-growing sound within electronic music through Mahaba Music, the newly founded imprint will continue Kitty’s journey of advancing the Afro-House sound in the UK and Europe while profiling both upcoming and established artists from across the globe. An established broadcaster and club DJ, Kitty’s monthly Rinse FM show will showcase Mahaba’s sound on global airwaves on the first Sunday of every month on her newly extended two-hour show.

The release is apt with Afro-house melody blending with striking deep-cut-chords emotional lyrics and velvet vocals. It’s an instant show-amper as it captivates and unites the world with every rhythm. ‘Solitude’ is available on Mahaba Music. 

“I am excited to create a musical space for myself and upcoming artists to showcase our sound. As a passionate tastemaker, Mahaba is an outlet to express the global influences of an ever-growing sound in electronic music without feeling boxed in. Spreading the message of love and care, Mahaba is a label that desires to sonically connect the world.” – Kitty Amor


Lilly Palmer - ‘My Fantasy’

The widely popular techno star ignites the dance charts and dancefloors with her latest release ‘My Fantasy’. It’s further proof that this techno star is a rare dual talent both on stage and together with her husband Egbert in the studio. Having begun her musical journey in Zurich, she has now gone on to become one of the most exciting names in techno today. The unstoppable Lilly Palmer has gained mainstage status by performing magnetic sets at Tomorrowland to wild underground techno bunkers performances by developing a distinctive and unique sound.

Heavily devoted to developing her unique sound, Lilly puts down countless hours in the studio, the product of which can be seen in her chart-topping discography. Her latest release explodes with a range of techno elements that carry an upbeat, high-energy tempo. It develops into a contagious tune with her original vocals as the backdrop. Techno is the world’s most popular genre of all stages and clubs ‘My Fantasy’ becomes an instant banger.

Coming with an exclusive music video for ‘My Fantasy’, this softer approach to techno follows up her biggest hit to date, ‘We Control’. In speaking about the video Lilly reveals:

"I often take inspiration from TikTok and had seen some videos there of women wearing AI-generated armour on the beach. I found it very cool and thought, let's do it without AI, so I bought the right outfit and went to the beach in the evening. The cold almost killed me, but the result was worth it. The hype around the song has a lot to do with the vocals and the video. It stimulates the imagination, and that's a good thing, right?"


Bushwacka! - ‘Sunday School’ [Classic Music Company]

The celebrated British DJ and tastemaker, Bushwacka! delivers an exciting and classic vibe track entitled ‘Sunday School’. As a resident DJ at the seminal London club The End, and one of the original members of the Rat Pack rave outfit, Bushwacka!’s impact on the underground scene of the 90s is undeniable. With pioneering sets spanning everything from acid to tech to breaks, it’s only fitting that an artist of such high caliber would eventually end up on Luke Solomon’s artistic imprint. In recent years, Bushwacka! has continued to establish himself as an artist at the front of the genre, releasing music with fellow legends Michel de Hey, Archie Hamilton, Darius Syrossian, and Carl Cox, as well as an original EP on pioneering NYC label Nu Groove. Now on Classic, ‘Sunday School’ features uplifting spoken word samples over an energetic bass and distinct four-on-the-floor pattern, demonstrating the work of an industry expert in full swing.


ARTBAT - 'Remember' [UPPERGROUND]

Prepare for an unforgettable odyssey as the unstoppable duo ARTBAT, hailing from Kyiv, unveils their long-awaited sonic marvel, "Remember," on their now influential imprint, UPPERGROUND. Has made an impact in the dance music industry by releasing captivating and moving records and remixes, generating a high status in the scene as one of the most elite duos in today’s era. Meanwhile, their UPPERGROUND label has swiftly risen to prominence, acting as a beacon for visionary artists within the electronic music sphere. The signature sound of ARTBAT transcends listeners on a global scale, with their tracks finding homes in high-profile fashion campaigns with brands like Emporio Armani and Grand Seiko. "Remember" is one of the duo’s most eagerly awaited releases, having played this for the last 2 years, the track encapsulates the quintessential ARTBAT experience. It creates a magnetic and emotional energy with a euphoric and uplifting melody that hypnotizes the listener to every rhythm and beat. It's fueled by a forceful bassline that carries a dancefloor journey from past to present. ARTBAT continues to expand the landscape of electronic music with "Remember" as it showcases their unwavering commitment to creating beautiful and thought-provoking sounds, defying expectations, and captivating the hearts and souls of listeners around the globe.


Silver Panda and Sevenn - ‘Welcome The Night’

The innovative house duo Silver Panda and melodic producer Stenn are joining forces for a groundbreaking release on Experts Only imprint, John Summit’s label. Representing the Los Angeles club scene, Silver Panda, an artist duo, who are known for their powerful club tracks are reaching new levels with their new release. Sevenn rapidly gained worldwide recognition for smash hits and for collaborating with heavy DJs and producers such as Tiësto and Gucci Maine. Together, they release “Welcome The Night,”  a twisted heater featuring dark, choral vocals interspersed with acidic synths and a deep, rolling bass, perfectly capturing the expansive yet underground sound we have come to expect from Summit’s label.


Article written by Meagen Surowiecki

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