With 2009’s debut, Skanky Skanky, Toddla T established himself as a prodigious talent. Two years on, the Sheffield producer is back with his second album, Watch Me Dance.
Recorded between Sheffield and Kingston in Jamaica, this dynamic has left it’s mark on the record, it sounds like a halfway house between two musical cultures. An affection for clattering beats and powerful basslines remains but it is only on the high energy ‘Badman Flu’ that jumpy dancehall/bass sound of his debut is fully revisited.
His time in Jamaica comes to the fore on two of the standout tracks, ‘Streets so Warm’ and ‘Fly’, where the vocal talents of Wayne Marshall and Ms Dynamite are fully realized. Elsewhere lead single ‘Take It Back’ hankers back to the pop-rave hits from the ’90s and ‘Lovely Girl’, ‘Body Good’ and ‘How Beautiful It Would Be’ continue the cheery summery vibes. Even when longstanding collaborator Roots Manuva lends his vocal talent to the title track, the upbeat is preferred to gruffness.
The biggest leap Toddla T has made is his ability to craft tunes with a foot in both camps, no longer is he solely concerned with battering the ears off you. This newly found eclecticism jumps between styles and tempos and is bound by a sense of fun and a willingness to embrace it. Watch Me Dance is a fun album reminding us of the summer we never had.
As you may already know, ‘Watch Me Dance’ is the title track from Toddla T‘s forthcoming album which is out in August on Ninja Tune.
The track features the vocal prowess of Roots Manuva and is full of dancefloor grooves, funky basslines and electronic strut. Anyway, following unleashing ‘Watch Me Dance‘ on the public a few weeks back, T has just unveiled a brand spanking new video for the single.
Toddla T is probably the most featured artist on this blog, I promise no more until the release of his new album in August.
The duo have just released Mark Simpson directed robot-strewn video for lead track ‘Out in the Streets’. It’s an absolute monster of a track, indebted to roots reggae, dubstep, juke, electronica and dancehall.
Toddla T has been busy readying the release of his second album Watch Me Dance, out in August, his first for Ninja Tune.
He found time to hide out in the Red Bull Studios for two weeks creating a tune-a-day with a selection of UK wide artists for his exclusive Red Bull mixtape. Crafted from scratch over 2 weeks with 9 special guests from all over the UK, it’s presented in a mixtape style but is in fact 9 exclusive Toddla T collaborations.
It’s a great mixtape which at just under 30 minutes has all the usual Toddla T ingredients; big bass beats, dancefloor grooves, funky basslines, electro/dance hall riddims with a touch of soul and of course, serious feel good vibes!
The tracklisting is after the jump along with a thumping remix of his latest tune ‘Watch Me Dance’ (w/ Roots Manuva) from SebastiAn which has been doing the rounds of late.
The Joe Strummer New Music Foundation, Strummerville, has teamed up with Brothers Cider to release a one-off free compilation, Songs For The Summer.
Strummerville is a not for profit organization was set up in memory of the late great Joe Strummer. It plays an important role in supporting and endorsing musical projects and upcoming bands in the UK and elsewhere. Latest project, Songs For The Summer is an eclectic mix of new music from some of the bands that Strummerville is supporting – 11 tracks by 11 different bands, all unique and diverse. There really is something for everyone here .
There are some rather stunning inclusions, long time favourites The Vagabonds don’t disappoint with highly charged rip-roaring punk rock goodness of ‘John Mellor’. Meanwhile The Welcome Committee drop the breezy and uplifting ‘Rich Kids’, La Rebla Fam the skank fuelled and grimey ‘A British Morning’ and Dark Moon, the dark and wistful ‘Blackbird’.
You can sample my personal picks below and Songs For The Summer is available to download for FREE from here.
Toddla T is preparing to release his second album Watch Me Dance this August. ‘Take It Back’ featuring Shola Ama and J2K not so long ago heralded the return of The ‘Boom DJ from the Steel City’.
His latest offering is ‘Watch Me Dance’. Not only does it feature the vocal talents of label mate Roots Manuva, but it originally began life as a Roots tune. It takes shape more as a collaboration between the two producers with startling results. ‘Watch Me Dance’ is full of dancefloor grooves, funky basslines and electronic strut, not to mention Roots’ vocal prowess.
The single features a wealth of tasty remixes from Sebastian, Andrew Weatherall, Heartbreak and SX, as well as the original Roots Manuva version of ‘Watch Me Dance’.
The Kills latest album Blood Pressures has absolutely blown me away. It is as it happens, the first to do so.
The Kills were always a band I knew were great and hugely talented, but say for a few songs, their records never captured my full attention. That’s all changed now, hardly a day passes with which Blood Pressures doesn’t get a spin. More on that later.
The chugging, melancholic dub-tinged ‘Satellite’ has received a revamp from UK producer The Bug. The dubby vibe is blown-out considerably giving it a ghoulish, eerie and ethereal vibe.
Until quite recently I wasn’t really aware of Foreign Beggars. The five man London crew which comprises of rappers Orifice Vulgatron and Metropolis, Dj NoNames, Beat Boxer Shlomo, and Producer Dag Nabbit have already released a slew of singles, EP’s and an album. All I had been aware of was their work with Noisia on the superb Split The Atom album from 2010.
Collaborations must be their forté, this time teaming up with Vato Gonzalez for a thumping new single ‘Badman Riddim (Jump)’. A mixture of slick rhymes, killer basslines, crushing beats and quirky video make it a prime candidate to be a summer anthem.
Accompanying their great new video, is a couple of free downloads for you: Tru Fix & Thunderskank’s dubstep mix and Noisia & Foreign Beggars ‘Shellshock’.
Vato Gonzalez ft. Foreign Beggars: ‘Badman Riddim’ is out June 19 on Ministry of Sound.
Young London-born-Irish-raised musician Maverick Sabre has been tipped for greatness by many pundits. His debut The Traveling Man Mixtape which was released for FREE late last year was one of sheer quailty.
He has continued to cause a stir since we last chatted, receiving praise for his Lost Words EP and many live shows culminating with an impassioned performance of ‘I Used To Have It All’ on Jools Holland. This performance in particular illustrates the true strength of his voice, so unique, powerful and filled with feeling and passion as he seamlessly slinks between a myriad genres of soul to reggae and into hip-hop.
A debut album is expected sometime this year but the big question is whether he can deliver on his early promise, let’s hope so.
You can watch his Jools Holland performance below and download the highly charged dance floor anthem, ‘Where We Gonna Go’ from his Lost Words EP.
One of the UK’s brightest talentsToddla T rolls into Dublin town for a show this Sunday in the POD on Harcourt Street.
Frequent readers will know only too well that I’m a massive fan of this guy. I’m still hooked on the thumping electronic dancehall strut of his 2009 debut Skanky Skanky. Somehow I’ve yet to catch him live, a trend that looks like continuing beyond Sunday night (Damn you Sundays!).
Anyway, it gives me the chance to share this crushing remix of his new single, ‘Take It Back’, from LA producer Dillon Francis, who’s own stock has been rising recently.
Keep your eyes and ears peeled for his next and debut Ninja Tune album, Watch Me Dance, which will feature Roisin Murphy, Skream, Wayne Marshall and Ms Dynamite and others.
Toddla T plays the POD on Harcourt Street this Sunday, May 1st. Tickets €12/Doors 10.30.
‘Survive It’ takes us on a contemplative nocturnal wander to continue sharing his musing with us, where we at and where we going? It’s bright, hopeful and brilliant. If you haven’t checked out Peanut Butter Blues & Melancholy Jam yet you really should, it’s a wonderful off-kilter fusion of dub-step, electronica, hip-hop. I can’t praise it enough, why not grab a cup and join him?
‘Survive It’ is out on May 9th through Brownswood Recordings