NEW RELEASE: Comic Strips – Thrill Ride EP [Free DL]
You remember Comic Strips, right? Since we featured him last November, the budding producer has been hard at work assaulting eardrums as he plays gigs on both coasts. What proved to be a huge year for him has culminated in what has to be the high point of his young career — a spot in the massive, six stage Shambhala Music Festival in Salmo, British Columbia as he performs on the same decks as the likes of Zeds Dead, Dillon Francis, Pretty Lights, and many others.
This morning, as I settled at my desk with my Johnnie Walker spiked coffee and prepared to spit venom at anyone who dared to interact with me (psst…in case you don’t know what I’m talking about), I saw that our inbox had been treated to an email from the 20 year old whose production is wise beyond his years.
As I unzipped the files of this EP, I rolled my eyes over the fact that two tracks can be called an EP. I get it, but still.
But, after listening to them, I thought:
This shit is good.
The first tune was the title track, “Thrill Ride”. It’s a well crafted
moombahcore midtempo 110 BPM banger that proves that you don’t need a build up littered with beat rolls and exaggerated sweeps for it to be effective. The graceful arpeggio intro builds a soundscape that almost abruptly falls out from under you, if not for a drop sample that perfectly captured my reaction to what followed.
The powerful drop remains dynamic throughout, with creative little modifications that construct a pretty complex choon. Even the second build and drop are a little different, making the entirety casually listenable.
While Comic Strips doesn’t shy away from deviating from his typical sounds, the sidekick in this album, “THNDR”, is a return to the Pittsburgh native’s more typical jam. This 4×4 dance floor killer is takes a simple electro house foundation and spices it up with little quirks at almost each last beat. Also I just noticed that, if you get the timing right, the GIF above syncs perfectly with a 128 BPM bar.
Just as with “Thrill Ride”, the second half of this song features small but significant alterations, keeping the track fresh while still ensuring it sounds like one track, not two. The changeup provides a jumpier vibe than the first drop, helping sustain the floor’s energy if a DJ decides he wants to play the entirety of this one out.
Comic Strips excels thanks to the relatively mature sound compared to other producers his age. The tracks are complex without getting too deep, instead remaining fun and exuberant. His sound design is strong and his compositions evolve mid-song, escaping the monotony which causes young beatsmiths to falter.
When I referred to Shambhala as the high point of Comic Strips’s career, I should have specified “to this point”. It’s almost guaranteed that this year will be better than the last, so give him a follow on whichever medium you fancy to keep up with all the new (usually free) jams from this talented artist.
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