May 17, 2012
Hey yo! Welcome back dudes and dudettes. I hope you’re all still pretty stoked with the content I’ve been bringing recently! I know I am. It’s almost been four full months that I’ve been writing The Breakdown and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it! Hopefully you guys have too. I’ve got a pretty exciting post lined up for today with a pair of dudes that have been taking over lately. There’s lots of music, plenty to read and a couple free downloads to get you through the weekend! Let’s go!
Over the last six months, you might have found yourself asking, “Who the hell are Project 46?!”
Project 46 is the genius pairing of Thomas Shaw and Ryan Henderson. Thomas lives in Vancouver, B.C. and Ryan lives in Waterloo, Ont. YES! You read that right! They don’t live in the same city! Say whaaa!? A lot of their early productions had to be done via Skype and cloud computing, which doesn’t seem like it posed any sort of problem for the duo. Now, with their success, they’re able to spend time directly with each other in the studio, but still go back and forth quite frequently online!
Thomas and Ryan got together in June 2011, and went to work right quick. They released their first track, Dreaming, on Monstercat Sept. 17, 2011 and their first Beatport release was their Limitless EP on Nov. 14, 2011 . They’ve got nearly a dozen original productions ready to release. “We literally have to sift through them and decide which ones are best to release,” says Ryan. “Obviously it is important to not litter the scene with tons of music, or else it ends up getting lost in the sea of music online.”
They’ve already gathered a massive following of loyal fans. In six months time, they’ve earned 30,000+ Facebook fans, 11,000+ SoundCloud followers and, having only just started with Twitter, they’re now at 1,500 followers. These numbers continue to grow daily and show no sign of slowing down. They focus extremely hard on fan interaction and providing value to their fans. Every Friday they release a free mashup, on what they refer to as Pancake Friday, where they try and welcome fan interaction. Now with over 30,000 fans on Facebook, it’s becoming increasingly difficult for Thomas and Ryan to respond to each individual comment/tweet/etc., so they’re launching their very own VIP website that will have limited membership AND THEY’RE TAKING APPLICATIONS NOW! This private website will have a forum area where your can speak directly to Project 46, it will have all their music neatly organized online for free download, and they also plan on offering free merchandise to their VIP members! “In the end of the day we don’t focus on removing pirated links of our music,” says Ryan. “We focus on creating a real relationship with our fans and hope that through that relationship they will spend a couple bucks to help support our music.”
Project 46 have literally blown up over the past six months, taking over just about every chart there is. They’ve had three #1 spots on the popular Hype Machine, as well as multiple Top 3’s. All three tracks on their Beatport debut release, Limitless EP, charted on the progressive house Top 100, with the peak being at #25. They’ve reached the #1 spot on the official Billboard Top 100 Dance Charts (worldwide), with their remix of Kelly Clarkson’s What Doesn’t Kill You (Stronger), and their recent Monstercat release, Reasons ft. Andrew Allen spent over two weeks in the Beatport Top 10, finally taking home the coveted #1 spot! That’s not the only #1 they’ve held on Beatport … their remix of What is Love? by Haddaway has been between the #1 and #2 spots in the Rock and Pop Top 10 on Beatport for over two months, sharing the top spot honor with David Guetta. Right now the track sits at #4 and is going on it’s third month since release! The remix had initially started off as a bootleg, but was quickly picked up by the official label.
Their new track, Brave Heart, was just released on May 15, by Manufactured Music. (Fun Fact: Manufactured Music is the label of Manufactured Superstars, who are also the founders of Beatport!) Project 46 has got so much music coming out this Spring and Summer on some very big and established labels. They recently finished working on a collabo with Adam K, that was just signed to Spinnin’ Records, which is arguably one of the biggest labels in EDM today. They’ve released tunes by Nicky Romero, Basto and Cedric Gervais to name a few. “We literally camped in the studio for 5 days to get this track done. After 3 days we had to scrap our almost complete track because it just was not working. We ended up getting a new one complete in a couple days!” said Ryan. Wow … talk about work ethic!!!
If you want to catch Project 46 live … they’ve got a pretty extensive tour in the works that will cover most of the June through to August. Keep an eye on their website for official dates! They’ve also been confirmed as headliners for the Canadian stage at both Escapade Music Festival in Ottawa on June 30 and Digital Dreams in Toronto on July 1. Both of these festivals have insanely huge lineups. If you live in the area, are going to be in the area, can afford the trip … I highly suggest you attend! Check out the festival reviews on djmag.ca! Click here for the Escapade Music Festival review. Click here for the Digital Dreams festival review.
Now that you’ve got an idea of who these musical masterminds on … let’s have a listen! Below, I’ve got four of their most recent productions. Some free downloads and some streams of recent releases! Enjoy!
Up first we’ve got their most recent release, Brave Heart, on Manufactured Music. This radio edit starts with a nice back and forth synth leading into a massive buildup paired with some soft vocal sampling. The synths on these drops are so powerful with a beautiful melody laid over top. I’m left rather lost for words on this track, it’s just purely amazing. The vocal sampling makes a return for the break and really pops. They’ve got a little high-pitch synth in there that sounds like a bell … perfection! Brave Heart is guaranteed to have the entire crowd jumping and I’m itching to see it in action! Head over to Beatport and purchase your copy now!
The Rift is a textbook progressive house track, with long bars comprised of solid drum work and breaks filled with beautiful, soothing synth lines. This track reminds me instantly of old Deadmau5 and that is a massive compliment. It’s 6a.m. and you and your friends are driving home from the rave … you put this track on! I can’t help but feel completely relaxed and at peace, while still bobbing my head and shoulders back and forth. To top it all off, this is a free download! I highly recommend adding this to your late night summer playlist.
Reasons ft. Andrew Allen is a beautiful happy house tune. Andrew Allen has a great voice. It sounds even better over top of the piano they’ve got in those breaks … add in an infectious clap and lyrics perfectly crafted for a summer crowd and I guarantee there will be a smile on just about everyone’s face. That happy synth lead begins and all my worries are washed away at the drop. A soft buzzing bass line backing up those stadium style synths completes it perfectly. This is a track that will be played over and over again at all the major festivals this summer. I’m definitely going to be putting this into my own summer mixtape! Head over to Beatport and purchase your copy now!
To finish up the feature on Project 46, we’ll go a bit of a different route. The boys teamed up with another duo by the name of Gemellini and produced a serious banger for Monstercat, titled Deadline. A nice echoing synth and groovy claps over a soft drum beat bring you to a long piano lead that comes to shine in the breaks. Long builds and leads are a key component to this track. The drop goes seriously hard with some insanely heavy synths. They’ve got a nice melody over top that brings it all together. This one is also a free download, so get on it! You can head over to Beatport and purchase a copy too, if you’re feeling generous!
I had the opportunity to put together a Q&A for Project 46, which will be COMING SOON!
Markus Cole is someone who is no stranger to The Breakdown … we’ve featured his music twice (1)(2) now. Today’s post marks the third feature for Markus and as long as he keeps churning out these progressive electro masterpieces, he’ll have many more to come. For those who haven’t heard of Markus Cole before now … the dude is only 17 years old and has the production skills of someone who has been making music for years. Below we’ve got his two most recent productions. Right now, neither of these tracks are available for free download … but Markus is quite the generous dude and has numerous tracks available for free download on his SoundCloud. I wouldn’t be surprised to see the download option turned on for these tracks in the near future. You’ll definitely want to keep your eye on that.
Up first is a track called, Ghost, that Markus released on his SoundCloud just over a couple weeks ago. Ghost opens with an extremely catchy synth melody and piano lead laid over top of hard-hitting drums. That catchy synth melody shines through the break, receiving a face-lift with the addition of a very unique, yet eerie synth and a solid drum beat to get your feet moving and blood pumping again. You’re hit by a powerful acid-infused drop with huge synth lines that make me think of Nicky Romero. That eerie synth makes a comeback and sounds like a group of chickens clucking and raving along. This track is all around crazy, in the best possible ways! Have a listen below!
Next from Markus Cole is Circles. With just under 1,000 plays in it’s first week up on SoundCloud, this one is gonna be a favorite all summer long. Circles opens with a nice rolling hi-hat and a massive synth lead. The synths used in this track can only make me feel one emotion … pure happiness. Markus does an excellent job at keeping the drum patterns nice and exciting until the first break. The vocals are a beautiful addition to the track, but the drop is where this track really shines. Powerful, absolutely massive synths that would be rock a stadium crowd. The well-timed stops and buzzing synth line add some extra flair to the track! Never duplicated and always keeping it unique, Markus Cole is someone you need to look out for.
KEEP THOSE SUBMISSIONS COMING IN … if you know some Canadian talent that you think deserves to be featured on The Breakdown, LET US KNOW by contacting thebreakdown(at)djmag(dot)ca! Tell your friends! We love to hear from you guys!
See you next time!
– MAKE SMILES