You have to love the music scene these days. With plenty of artists clawing for a piece of the public eye, promoting their wares for better sales, and trying to make sense of their overall strategic model in general it’s a breath of fresh air when artists step up and offer a no frills free release.
What better way to get in touch with the people than to give out some music. Enter South African electro duo Sparrow (<–follow link for their download please). Their latest EP “Bite Marks” is up on their site and available for download free. Let’s break it on down though:
Bite Marks (Original Mix)
The original mix definitely has its roots in electro, but I can hear a break waiting to come through. The synths in track are quite filthy and angry sounding. I am reminded of the flying monkeys from The Wizard of Oz marching along. o_O
No Justice (Original Mix)
No Justice is another electro fueled track, this time a bit more on the moody side. Sparrow switches gears and the filthy synths are replaced with a good balance of leads and moody pads. Great sequencing and the drums are on point.
No Justice (Sweekuh remix)
Sweekuh’s take on this track subtly crosses electro into a bit of dubstep, giving DJ’s a great transition track between the genres. The track stands out in the bunch for me simply because of it’s genre blurring moments, and I feel like the drums were sequenced with a unique touch. While it does have roots in the original; it stands on it’s own for sure.
Bite Marks (Taylor Thomas remix)
Taylor Thomas maintains a stance in electro territory with his remix. Starts out rolling along nicely with some snappy drums with the original lead coming in over it, then at about 1:17 it delves into a pretty bad ass breakdown, I really liked the variation here, and the way Taylor builds it back up and drops it again, especially the pitching down synth before the drop – very effective.
Bite Marks (Battle Beyond the Stars remix)
First of all, I went to IMDB to look up the old 1980’s classic sci-fi film “Battle Beyond the Stars” because damn – that’s an awesome name for a band. I feel that at least looking at the cover for this film might prepare me for what was in store.
Alrighty then – I definitely get the feel that this track was made by Seven futuristic mercenaries that were assembled to defend a helpless farm colony from an evil overlord. This version has a Big Beat ish kinda feel to it, tempo is slower….I wanna say hip hop on steroids…after a couple listens I really wish they had gone a bit further into Glitch Hop territory – but I am not knocking the tune. I love a fat Big old beat….I’m pretty sure you will too 😉
Bite Marks (Jprime remix)
First of all, who the hell is this jprime guy anyway 😉 Seriously, I’m not going to review my own version – but I will say that jprime enjoys long walks on the beach and Jagermeister.
In These Bones (Original Mix)
A breakbeaty track with some nice lush leads and synth edits that compliment a bit of growling bass that will see some play from me. Nice late nighter, has some mood to it, everything sits nice in the mix, again – solid job!
I caught up with Sparrow’s Gareth Graham on Facebook and asked him a few questions to get a better idea on who they are, and where their music is coming from:
viperfunk: How long have you guys been making music?
Sparrow: We’ve been making music together since March 2010. Gareth has been making electronic music since 2002 and Gavin has been playing metal drums for the best part of 10 years.
viperfunk: Who are your influences?
Sparrow: Our influences are wide and varied, and that’s probably why it’s quite difficult to pin us down into one definite genre. Gareth’s background is in electronic music and Gavins background is in metal and rock bands. Artsits that inspire us include Justice, Haezer, Boys Noize, Daft Punk, Skrillex, Battle Beyond the Stars and many more.
viperfunk: Where would you like to see your music take you?
Sparrow: Right now, we’re just doing this because we enjoy it. There is no real long term plan as such, but we are just excited to keep doing what we do, and see where the road takes us. Some goals include playing a lot more shows and possibly doing a bit of a tour before 2011 is out.
I want to thank Sparrow for their time, and for the free EP – I hope you’ll take a look at their site, hit them up an Facebook. Gareth has been nothing but a polite, top notch, punctual, and pleasant fellow to work with on the remix front, and when messaged for a few questions was very prompt with a reply. In my opinion that’s pure professionalism which I am hearing in their music as well! Big ups, and we’re wishing you the best in the future!