25 February (Secretly Canadian)
How does Diplo do it? This is a serious question we all must ask ourselves when we address his work. Diplo has consistently put out great music. I’m willing to call him the Michael Jordan of EDM. Not only does he run a record and clothing label, and a charity (Heaps Decent) he has a weekly radio show “Diplo and Friends” (check your local listings). To top that off 2014 will be the premier year of his Mad Decent Boat Party, in addition to his 7th year of hosting nationwide (and South African) Block Parties. Oh and don’t forget he is a producer on top of that. Last year alone Diplo produced 7 singles, 2 EP’s, 2 remix EP’s, Snoop Lion’s first album and finished an album with his collaborative Major Lazer and on February 25th they released their newest EP entitled Apocalypse Soon.
Major Lazer (at the time Diplo and Switch) released their first album (Guns Don’t Kill People… Lazers Do) in 2009. Then in 2011 Switch left and Jillionaire and Walshy Fire replaced him in early 2012. To date this is Major Lazer’s 7th and most varied EP. People have often criticized Major Lazer and specifically Diplo’s “style” for being too inconsistent. Personally I love it. Diplo and Major Lazer have gone from dancehall, to house, to trap, to bounce, and everywhere in between. I might be wrong but I think this is Diplo’s doing. He wants to conquer everything, that’s why he takes on so many projects. If you put on his discography and hit shuffle God knows what song or genre will come up but you can guarantee that it will be good and Apocalypse Soon is no different.
The 5 tracks are all unique and seem less like an EP and more like 5 singles that were put out concurrently. The EP starts off with “Aerosol Can” (feat. Pharrell Williams) and is a surprisingly stripped down, rhythmic song that relies heavily on the combo of hand drums and the rapping of Pharrell. “Come On To Me”, the second track mixes the nostalgic rapping style of Sean Paul with an trap/bounce sound that Major Lazer can call all their own. “Sound Bang” feat. Machel Montano is probably the poppiest song that uses steel drums and makes a great dancehall anthem that will get anyone dancing. Next, Dale Asi featuring Mr. Fox is probably the most pleasantly bizarre song on the album. Mr. Fox has some quality bars but at other times sounds like the Panameño version of RiFF RAFF. Nonetheless the track will get you hyped for any occasion. Lastly, for “Lose Yourself”, Major Lazer brings in the dancehall powerhouse RDX & Moska. The song is perfect for daggering or whatever sexually charged dancing you’re into.
If you’re a fan of mellow, instrumental music then you should not listen to it. This album to quote, Charles “Chazz” Michael Michaels, “gets the people going”. It is just in time for spring break and you can stream it here:
Rating: Loved it