Now Accepting January Next Step Entries!

 

The first Next Step contest for the new year is now open! January 2012 marks our seventh installment and we are so ready for all your freshness.

To date, we’ve featured Tara Priya in July, Iman Williams in August, Tall Black Guy Productions in September, Cole Williams for October, Tensei for November, and Awalé for December. Some lovely singers, boundary pushing producers, and a band with some serious international groove.

The winner will receive an “Artist Spotlight” feature post on the Giant Step website, and up to $1,000 in Giant Step Marketing services!

Please note that we are accepting submissions from anyone that makes music – producers, singers, instrumentalists, rappers, and bands alike are all welcome.

This month, we are accepting submissions from today until Tuesday, January 31st. That said, we are now open for January 2012 entries!

Submit your music for consideration!

New Release: Second Sky – ‘The Art of Influence Remixed’

 

Second Sky’s breathtaking debut album is reinterpreted by a variety of producers, including veterans like Kenny Dope and Dr. Rubberfunk. Called The Art of Influence Remixed, the project aimed to carefully handpick each producer to create perfectly tailored remixes that are not only DJ friendly, but also provide a full bodied and diverse listening experience.

Enjoy a few free tracks from this awesome collection below!

Second Sky – “Messenger (Dj Melo’s Moombahton Remix)” [MP3]
 

Second Sky – “Art of Influence (Auditor’s Domination Remix)” [MP3]
 

Second Sky – “Under the Line (Kenny Dope Instrumental)” [MP3]
 

Purchase The Art of Influence Remixed on Amazon

Twitter | Official Site

New Release: Hectic Zeniths – ‘Hectic Zeniths’

 

In September of last year, we hipped you to a free track called “Curtains” by a little known Philadelphia based producer named Hectic Zeniths, and now we’ve got a lot more. This January the talented beatmaker dropped on us his gem of a debut album, Hectic Zeniths. And, what the eff – it’s free.

The multi-instrumentalist took close to three years to create this dense, layered project with original piano compositions, atmospheric samples, live instrumentation, synths, and stirring vocals.

And did we mention he’s also currently a high school math teacher? Artistic nerds = swoon.

Download Hectic Zeniths [MediaFire]

Facebook | Twitter | Bandcamp

Video: Santigold – “Big Mouth”

 

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Santigold’s sophomore album, Master of My Make Believe, is finally around the bend with a planned spring release. Along with this news is “Big Mouth,” an ADD drum heavy tune chockfull of bubbling urgency. Take a look at the accompanying colorfully animated video above and agree with us that Santi’s dancers win at life.

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December Next Step Artist Spotlight: Awalé

 

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Congratulations to Awalé for being our December 2011 Next Step winner! The diversity of music that we have come in for this contest is impressive, and we are so excited to present a winner with such eclectic international influences like Awalé’s.

Awalé is a true testament to London’s diversity, with members from Tunisia, Cuba, France, Slovakia and England. Similarly, the sound is vivid and textured, skirting genre lines as it touches on Afrobeat, Balkan music, North African amazigh music, Congolese rhumba, Ethiopian funk, and Latin jazz.

Awalé’s debut album Just Have To Grow released in November 2011 and is incredibly pleasing to our ears. Co-produced by Nick Page (Dub Colossus), most of the album was recorded live in one room over the course of just two days. Preview the entire album below and experience the amazingness yourself. And you absolutely must watch the live performance video above as well – truly heartening music.

Londoners are encouraged to support the album launch, which will be a special all-star gig on March 14th at Hoxton Bar and Kitchen. Tour dates will follow in the spring.

Facebook | Twitter | Official Site

Awalé band photo after the jump