State In The Real – Penn State Music Scene

Author - Chris Will

Dance Doctor Diplo Drops Free Download "Crown"; Mass Twerking Commences

Per his Facebook promise, Diplo just dropped a free dl of his song “Crown” after accumulating 1 million followers total on Twitter. Featuring Mike Posner, Boaz Van De Beatz & Riff Raff, “Crown” is undeniably and awesomely Diplo with a smooth summery twist. Posner adds some of his swagtastic singing to the hook, and Riff Raff layers his chopped and warped flow over the bridge. What’s great about “Crown” is that it still has that chaotic twerktastic production that makes Diplo’s solo work so damn fantastic, but is probably one of the sunniest tracks he’s released to the public in a while. So grab the free download, press play, prop those feet up against a wall or inanimate object, and express yourself to this brash and ballin’ beat.

Breathe Carolina Releases Party-Themed 'Bangers Mixtape'

The kings of club-core and the “Blackout” barons, a.k.a Breathe Carolina, are back and thrashing their way through every house party and dance floor with their brawny Bangers Mixtape. The three-track effort is the first offering of new music since their 2012 re-release of Hell Is What You Make It, one of the best and most underrated dance albums of 2011. Those familiar with HIWYMI as a whole know what makes it so great, the grinding synth keys that slice through Kyle’s hair-raising, guttural roars, the ice-cold dub drops slithering underneath’s David’s slick singing. The core of that sound is very much present in Bangers, but tailored a bit more towards the summer, slightly in the vein of their 2009 album Hello Fascination. It’s a bit brighter, a bit more upbeat, and it’s a true testament to how Breathe Carolina are constantly re-emerging with stronger, punchier pop paradigms.

“Mistakes” serves as the first third of the Bangers Mixtape and is an absolute party anthem, maybe even more so than their massive top 40 hit “Blackout.” Driven by a squiggly synth line, David ricochets in with his hip-swaying hooks, leading the thundering percussion and stuttering dubstep-styled keys. Faded and letting lose, David and Kyle jump right into the fist pumping pre-chorus, and the rowdy choir supports David and Kyle’s showstopping line “gonna make mistakes, they’re ours to make.” “Mistakes” portrays the chaos of a full-blown party and the vivacity of a bunch of drunk kids living it up. It’s an absolutely pristine pop record, and definitely is strong enough to be an album single.

Next is “Riot,” a surprisingly emotive song with a sound that belies its title. Here we’re introduced to the more poetic side of Breathe Carolina, as David and Kyle intertwine inspirational lyrics around the hazy house production. Lines such as “tonight, we’re gonna paint the sky” and “let’s start a riot tonight,” convey the kind of pain that accompanies the lost and lonely youth. The sweeping chorus and stark melodies touch upon a facet of Breathe Carolina that’s been seen before in tracks such as “Gone So Long,” and “Reaching For The Floor.” “Riot” could easily be the sequel to “Mistakes,” as the fun and ferocious partying gives way to loud, inebriated introspection.

The third and final part of the Bangers trilogy, “Skeletons,” could be considered the morning after the party, building the emotional nature of “Riot” into a sad and sweet love song. David opens himself up to his lover, crooning “skeletons in my room, I laid them all out for you, second thoughts will be the death of us, and I don’t want the death of us,” before a symphony of synths rises around him, catapulting the track into the exhilarating chorus, where Kyle’s lion-like roar bolsters the strength and intensity of the hook. It’s age-old struggle of courtship and love, as David yearns desperately, “can I change your mind?” It’s also a pile-driving pop anthem and a great way to end out the mixtape.

The Bangers Mixtape may satisfy Breathe Carolina’s fans and quench their thirst for new music, but it also adds an even more poignant hunger for their upcoming album. Download the mixtape FOR FREE by clicking the link below, and support one of the best pop bands in modern music.


Ellie Goulding Drops Dance Single "Burn"; Further Proves Flawlessness

Indie-pop’s celestial sprite, the effervescent and eclectic Ellie Goulding, has spent the last year sweeping the world off its feet with her sparkling emotive tunes. It started last summer with “Lights,” when the little electronic ballad that could finally ended its slow blaze up the Billboard Hot 100 at a #2 peak, and it only got better from there. Her follow-up single (and first offering from her sophomore effort Halcyon) “Anything Could Happen” was a bit more aggressive, toting a pseudo-acapella breakdown slathered in reverb and sugarcoated with synthesizers. It spearheaded one of the strangest and strongest pop albums of 2012, as every track on Halcyon was a beautiful and bruised turn further into the flowering abyss of Ellie Goulding’s dark and delectable musicality. She’s currently riding the wave back to the top of the charts with her bff Calvin Harris and their monster club collaboration “I Need Your Love.” On top of that, its acoustic counterpart and her incredibly sexy cover of Alt-J’s “Tesselate” are floating across the interwebs as we speak, blessing all those in their heavenly path.

Long story short, Ellie Goulding’s not only one of the biggest and best pop stars in modern pop music, she’s also got the sense to consistently bless her fans with great new songs and covers even in-between albums. Which is why it should be no surprise that the queen of everything released a new single today to the unworthy masses. Produced by Greg Kurstin (P!nk, Lily Allen, Tegan & Sara) and written with Ryan Tedder of One Republic, “Burn” is a bit of a different look for Goulding, but certainly not a bad one. Those less radio-friendly may balk at the warbling songbird working with two of the most ubiquitous mainstream pop composers of the decade. But if anything, Goulding takes what would be an otherwise cookie-cutter dance-pop radio staple and makes it extraordinary. In “Burn,” Ellie Goulding twirls around the scorching synthesizers and sun-baked keys, turning up the heat as she takes you by the hand and sets the world aflame with hope and life. It’s probably one of her most optimistic records yet, and though it allegedly doesn’t drop on iTunes until mid-August, it’s poised to become one of the biggest songs of the summer. “Burn” will be packaged with the Halcyon re-release titled Halcyon Days, set to drop August 26th. But until then, celebrate the godliness of Goulding and blaze a trail across the dance floor with “Burn.”

Summer Pop Essentials

Let’s face it, summer’s nothing without a bangin summer playlist. And with so much awesome music coming out, both on the radio and under the radar, it pays to do some research in order to amass the perfect soundtrack for your summer.

Well, we at State in le Real know that doing just that takes time, and sometimes during the summer we don’t have time. If you’re not interning or working, you’re busy hanging on the beach, going to concerts, or drinking with your friends (or all three if you’re lucky). So we’ve slapped together some tunes that are a must have for any great summer playlist. Some are hot, some are cool, but all of them are definitely worth listening to.

“Saturday Night” – Natalia Kills

Best known for her high-pitched, autotuned cameo in LMFAO’s “Champagne Showers,” Natalia Kills is a UK pop singer on the rise. She’s been slowly edging her way into the minds and ears of Americans since her 2011 debut Perfectionist, but every hypersexualized electro-blasted single seems to fall just short of being radio-ready and extraordinary. However, it’s looking like she finally stepped up to the plate and hit a home run with her newest single “Saturday Night.” With a humid, synth-driven beat and a story spun from the tears of a lost, hopeless romantic, it’s certainly not what you would call an “upbeat song.” But where it lacks in optimism, “Saturday Night” definitely compensates with its smart 80s groove and gorgeous songwriting. There are some subtle nods to Brandon Flowers and Lana Del Rey in the way Natalia churns out the agony in her voice, and the song as a whole feels like the sparkling neon fog of a drunk Saturday night in the city.

“Sweater Weather” – The Neighbourhood

Having just released their debut I Love You, California alt-rockers The Neighbourhood are carving a chunk out of the American airwaves with their dust-covered, brooding love songs. Their current claim to fame is the lead single “Sweater Weather,” a hip-hop tinged, sultry wasteland of pure radio gold. Jesse Rutherford croons through passion and emptiness as he woos his lover, and the tart sexuality clashes with the gloomy guitars and harmonies in a way that’s both stirring and refreshing. The best example is in the hook, as Rutherford’s ominous claim – “it’s too cold for you here” – sounds less like a sneer and more like a come-on. “Sweater Weather” briefly made an appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 a few weeks ago, and expect it to only grow further in popularity. Also be sure to check out the rest of I Love You; the album is about as dark and sexy as alternative rock gets.

“Love Drunk” – Little Mix

Other than a few hap-hazard album fillers and one bomb-ass power ballad (“Turn Your Face”), Little Mix’s debut album DNA is completely made for the summer. Just about every track on DNA is crafted to be fantastic earworm pop, but surprisingly enough, the strongest (and most summery) track is the bonus cut “Love Drunk.” The growling base synth and shuffling percussion meld in with the four UK lovlies’ vocals, and it’s here we see a perfect example of how much Perrie, Jesy, Leigh-Anne, and Jade are adept with trading off lead. The transitions from singer to singer are seamless, and whether it’s the verse, pre-chorus, or chorus, every second of “Love Drunk” is ridiculously catchy. There are ample amounts of strength and buoyancy to the chorus, and the song is one of the sweetest, frothiest tracks to hit the pop world this year.

“Lose Yourself To Dance” – Daft Punk feat. Pharrell

The dynamic trio of Daft Punk and Pharrell may be already over saturating the airwaves with “Get Lucky,” but within Daft Punk’s newest project Random Access Memories lies one other fantastic collaboration with the hip-hop phenom. “Lose Yourself To Dance” is just as funkadelic as “Get Lucky,” though here we see Pharrell deploying his irresistible falsetto across wooingly sexy guitar chords. The repetition may seem a bit lulling at first, but the chorus itself serves to further steamroll the swing and sway of the track to the point of its mind-controlling rhythm. Daft Punk themselves jump into the latter half of the song with their signature auto-tuned, robotic vocals. This could potentially serve as a follow-up single to “Get Lucky,” so get familiar.

“Take My Hand” – Charli XCX

The queen of Tumblr-pop, Charli XCX, has kept her glitter-coated paws firmly planted within the pop music world for the better part of two years. Her songwriting credits and feature on “I Love It” are fueling the track’s world domination, and her own magnum opus True Romance is purring through the headphones of every hipster and rave kid’s jailbroken iPhone. The album has some choice tracks for sure, among them her previously released “Nuclear Seasons” and “You’re The One,” but “Take My Hand” is perhaps her brightest offering. The production could be best described as “video game glam,” with the synthesizers skipping and sputtering like they belong in a Kirby SNES game. And of course, Princess Charli doesn’t miss a beat, gurgling and slurring her way through the song’s euphorically erratic four-minute span.

“Pompeii” – Bastille

With a knack for contemplative and melancholy songwriting, you’d think that Dan Smith’s brainchild Bastille would lay within the dark, crunchy, guitar-centered world of British stadium rock. But no, Smith has Bastille out in the sun questioning and brooding, laying the band bare to the radiowaves with some of the best pop production that has been heard in a long, long time. The crown jewel of his project is most certainly the single “Pompeii,” an ode to the monotony of life and the illusion of its changes. Though this certainly doesn’t sound like a day on the beach, it’s the sound that makes it one of the freshest songs currently on the market. Tribal choirs and the behemoth percussion give “Pompeii” the biggest chorus since fun.’s “Some Nights,” and the earworm melodies are bound to make the track just as ubiquitous.

“That’s What I Like” – Kelsi Luck

Kelsi Luck’s “That’s What I Like” is more than just one hell of an indie-pop bomb, it’s an indie-pop virus. It’ll get into your head whether you want it there or not, and its bubblegum snap chorus will run itself on repeat until you want to dance in glee and agony. The L.A. singer’s crunchy powerpop anthem with a retro twist has been featured on the trailer of The To Do List, and it’s gaining some pretty steady momentum on Sirius XM as well. It may make Cher Lloyd’s “Want U Back” look like Adele’s “Someone Like You” in comparison, but just because it’s bratty and asinine doesn’t mean it isn’t undeniably memorable.

Summer Jam of the Week – "Where The Kids Are" (Madera remix) by Blondfire

La-based duo Blondfire can be found frolicking across the vast, rolling plains of indie-pop, wielding furry synthesizers and garage-style percussion to add some fun to the serenity and haze of their cool records. One such track in particular, their single “Where The Kids Are,” epitomizes the kind of naive effervescence that you’d find in your typical Passion Pit track, while exhibiting vocals that call to mind The Naked and Famous. And with indie-pop, there’s always room for massive club remixes from talented and creative DJs. Enter Madera.

The New York DJ tightens the original record and adds a heavy dose of electro-pop syrup upon the already sugary track, creating a colorful dance remix that’s as sticky-sweet as a melting popsicle. Madera slightly warps Erica’s vocals so she keeps pace with the driving dance beats, and all in all adds further youth to the already blissful song. Check Madera’s other great work on his SoundCloud by clicking HERE, and like him on Facebook by clicking HERE.

Summer Jam of the Week: "Cowboy Boots" by Macklemore And Ryan Lewis

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis have done more than just notch a couple of massive #1 hits, one of which (“Thrift Shop”) is currently the best-selling single of 2013. With their breakout album The Heist, they’ve created a soundtrack to growing up, a musical collection both soaring with youth and weighted with age. And though the dynamic duo may be best known for their pump-up jams and goofy odes to cheap shopping, their 18-track effort is galaxies bigger. Each record is a hard-hitting depiction of life, both through Macklemore’s eyes and through our own, where our existence and Macklemore’s intertwine with every poetic line and rugged hook. Whether it’s battling with addiction in “Neon Cathedral,” highlighting the plight of those struggling for equality in “Same Love,” or even raising your glass among pretty girls and great friends in “Castle,” The Heist holds a little something for everyone. The song “Cowboy Boots” is Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ summer anthem, and not just because of its cool, bluegrass-tinged hip-hop sound. It takes bittersweet nostalgia, hope, and acceptance in the same stride, representing the summer for what it really is. It’s a beginning, it’s an end, and at the same time, its just part of the steady cycle of the year. And the best part of the song? The pre-chorus, without a doubt.

“And acquaintances turn to friends; I hope those friends, they remember me. Hold the night for ransom as we kidnap the memories. Not sure there is a way to express what you meant to me. Sit around a table and use those years as a centerpiece.”

Goosebumps? Goosebumps.