Krewella Displays Versatility, Impresses with Debut EP 'Play Hard' [Review]
After first experimenting with pop and hip hop early on in their career, Chicago's Krewella has steadily evolved artistically and developed into a full-fledged electronic dance music act with a knack for pop, house and dubstep. You may remember that I first alerted you about the trio back in 2009 when I premiered their tracks, "Gentleman" and "Gameplan," that was followed by a post about "One Minute" a year ago that unveiled their fresh new dubstep sound.
To the uninitiated, Krewella is the teaming of Jahan, Yasmine and Rainman who live in and create music in one of Chicago's gritty yet arty neighborhoods. While the group's dubstep-influenced stompers are getting most of the attention, it's important for Krewella to point out that they are by no means solely a dubstep act. "We get pigeonholed into it a lot, but only one of the tracks on our EP is actually dubstep," says Kris Trindl aka Rainman, Krewella's savvy beatmaker. "People like to put us in a box, but we just like good music. If it’s between 100BPM to 170 BPM we'll figure out a way to make it work and have a good time with it," the producer and DJ says in a press release. "We just make the music that we love."
What sets Krewella's music clearly apart from the hard-edged soundboard effects that rule most of the dubstep scene, is that the group has found a way to innovatively combine flaming dubstep wobbles and pulsing dance beats with the type of candy-covered vocal harmonies and infectious hooks that pop hits are made of. In fact, some may even argue that Krewella at its creative core is a pop band with a deep love for the dance floor.
The group's hotly-tipped new EP, entitled "Play Hard," is solid proof of that. Packed with energy, the 6 tracks on "Play Hard" masterfully bounce around on the ever-expanding dance-pop spectrum. The group takes listeners from meaty dubstep on "Play Hard" to intensely atmospheric melodic house on "Killin' It" to clever micro-synth play on "Can't Control Myself." The soaring "Alive" is without question the most pop-oriented track on the EP with its twinkling piano line, raving groove and crisp vocal production.
Jahan explains that the diversity on the EP is very much a result of the group's musical interests. "Thanks to the internet, we grew up on a plethora of genre. Krewella is basically a product of the music that we were raised on—ranging from pop, to punk, to metal. Every track on the 'Play Hard' EP embodies a different subgenre of EDM ranging from dubstep, to progressive house, to moombahton." It's a very promising debut EP with an expert fusion of sounds that both dance lovers and pop aficionados will appreciate. (Click to download Krewella "Play Hard.")
July 5, 2012 | Permalink