Death Jam Posse and Laser Wolf Records Release "Death Wolf" on Vinyl

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Digital Cypher

"Our mission is to resurrect the bass gods and have coochies popping worldwide," says Da $wap $hop Kid of his new project Death Jam Posse. Three dudes you may recognize as Bleubird, Jabrjaw, and Protoman have taken on entirely new personas: Young Lauderdale, Mr. Belvedere, and Da $wap $hop Kid. With this new endeavor, they promise lots of bass and nothing but fun. "A Death Jam party is pure unadulterated ratchetness," the rapper brags, "head-banging, twerking, moshing, puke, and blood. It's an experience. You will dance or die." Definitely start prepping early and well for a Death Jam party.

This new trio is dripping with 954 pride. They're even putting out their first release on Laser Wolf Records. That's right, the craft beer-centric watering hole isn't just a place to get silly on hops, the guys behind it, specifically Chris Bellus, are managing an imprint. "He helped us put the 7-inch out. He spent tens of thousands of dollars finding the right vinyl pressing plant that would transfer our bass properly to record. After six months of searching the globe, he finally found one. And at last, Death Wolf will be released," describes Da $wap $hop Kid.


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Against Me! Frontman Tom Gabel Is Transgender, Becoming Laura Jane Grace

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Rolling Stone
Against Me! frontman is taking gender-bending one major step further than Bowie or Peter Gabriel ever did. In the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone, the 31-year-old singer announces his plans to transition from man into woman, from Tom Gabel to Laura Jane Grace.  

A sneak peek of the story was published on Rolling Stone's blog, mentioning that Gabel had questioned his biological gender for some time but hadn't, until recently, made the decision to undergo the extreme physical and psychological transitions that will make him a female, "taking hormones and undergoing electrolysis treatments."  

Gabel has been married -- to a lady, natch -- for years, and the two have a daughter. According to the release from RS, the two plan to continue their marriage despite Gabel's gender change.


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Head Spins: Sire Esq. (With New DJ Mix for Artist Related!)

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​The best DJs dig deep into the sounds they're spinning. And that doesn't mean just the the components of a given track - the structure of the beat, the motion of a melody, the drive of a bassline, and so on. No, the best want to know where a song comes from, be it who did what and why, or the wherewithal that made it all possible in the first place. To do so, these DJs get into the minutiae of the music, the facts that most figure in a track. This way when they let loose with the spin, they know just what makes it so dizzy.

Just such a DJ is the cat called Sire Esq. He named himself in homage to his U.K. birthplace (Sire is a British honorific, and Esquire "just sounded good next to it"). This beat-obsessed Miami-based head-spinner is as much aware of a song's history as he is of what it will do to a dancefloor.

Much of that can be attributed to the fact that Sire Esq. moonlights as a music critic, and his byline can be found everywhere from Vibe and New Times (for whom he still occasionally contributes) to hip hop sites such as Mass Appeal, Elemental and Wax Poetic (for whom his first piece -- on DJ Le Spam -- is set to run this summer).

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Mokai Holding You Ransom on Mondays

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Need an excuse to keep partying well after the weekend is over? Leave it to the Opium Group and Mokai (235 23rd Street, Miami Beach) to give you a solution to your problem with Ransom, the Monday night party at the recently renovated Collins Park lounge.

The party, hosted by Mark Lehmkuhl, sort of takes now-defunct Bella Rose's Black Sunday murder mystery theme but gives it a Patty Hearst twist. Every week some prominent nightlife fixture gets held up for ransom, and the only way it gets returned is you party your ass off. Victims have included Jason Odio, Lyndon Smith, Zack Bush, and more recently Roman Jones' iconic bust which sits atop the bar at Louis.

Kidnapper soundtrack is provided by DJs Ross One, Mr. Mauricio, Damaged Goods, and Sub Zero.

Need photographic evidence that the party is still alive? Our cameras were there not too long ago to document the mayhem.

Head Spins: The Reazin, Playing at the Tenth Get Low at the Vagabond This Thursday

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courtesy of Tara Ink
Who'da thunk they'd even heard about dubstep up in West Palm Beach, let alone been in on the action? But it's true. The U.K.-birthed electronic music phenomenon is alive and kicking up in South Florida's third county. That either means those folks are hipper than we think, or we've been fooling ourselves all along.

Perhaps it's a bit of both. Because with Respectable Street's Proper Dosage going down each and every Wednesday night, the West Palm Beach scene has proven that they too can be up to the minute.

Okay, so dubstep isn't actually very new. In fact, the form's been kicking around across the pond for a decade now. But SoFla only recently made it a habit. But like anything to which we become addicted, it's a habit that's gonna be damn hard to break.

Much of West Palm's newfound need is due to the efforts of a DJ named the Reazin, and his four partners: Milkman, Benjamin Linus, Chuck Nasty, and Rok is Dead. It was they who brought the idea of dubstep to Respectable's in the first place, convincing the club that this was just the thing to replace the long-running weekly After Dark party. And it is they who are ensuring that the bass-heavy import will throb its way into your subconscious for many moons to come.

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Head Spins: DJ Oski

Categories: Head Spins
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​Few DJs can boast a history of beat-dropping that dates back to the days of grade school. Then again, few DJs grew up in houses as heavy with sound as that of one DJ Oski. See Oski's pops, Pepe Pothea, was a player -- he handled percussion for some of salsa's most active bands throughout the '70s and '80s. Oski's God-pops, Papi Pena, was also a player, as well as a much-regarded arranger in the very same scene. And the young gun's Brooklyn home was filled with so much music the lad had no choice but to play some of it himself. 

But rather than playing the sideman, boy Oski chose to make the backing soundtrack. By he age of eight he was manning his family's collection of classics as if he was born to the task. "Man, we had records and eight-tracks and reel-to-reels all over the place," remembers Oski, "and I was all over that." 

Those formative years were spent split between Park Slope, Brooklyn and the M.I.A. When the Gonzalez clan finally made the definite move to the Magic City, father and godfather set up themselves gigging at such legendary Miami Beach hotels as the San Souci, the Casablancam and the Versailles. And the now junior high school-aged Oski tagged along as much as he was allowed. "It was like Goodfellas," he says. "We'd enter through the kitchen and my godfather would tell the staff to take care of me. It was amazing."
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Head Spins: Majica and Mano P

Categories: Head Spins
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Back in August, Head Spins gave you the goods on WDNA DJ Gene De Souza, whose Café Brasil show has been heating up the local radio waves every Sunday for the past seven years. But De Souza's show is not the only hot action coming out of the true-blue independent station's Coral Way studios each week. In fact, his road to Rio leads directly into the Latin Jazz Quarter, another of the sizzling offerings found Sundays down on the dial at 89.5 FM.
 
Indeed, Latin Jazz Quarter is one of DNA's signature shows, and it runs seven days a week at various times. But we're here now to hype that Sunday night edition, broadcast from 8 to 11 p.m., which is hosted by Majica and Mano P, arguably the genre's most formidable power couple.

And yes, Majica and Mano P are indeed a couple, and they have been legally hitched since 2002. The two were brought together by their band, the Baboons, a 16-year-young enterprise whose Evolution was Miami New Times' "Best Album of the Past Twelve Months" back in 1999. The band veers seriously Latin, but it goes more for the funk than the jazz. 

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Head Spins: DJ Meta 4, Spinning at Space on Saturdays

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​You want cool? Try this on for size. In a town and a time where everyone works every angle and drops every name, here comes a cat who, in this Head Spins interview, didn't mention the fact that we both knew each other in the old-school days of Jessie's and Rose's and Brandt's Break and Chili Pepper. Whether he did so to spare me the potential embarrassment of not immediately remembering, or simply because he wanted to stand strong on the laurels he's earned since then, is really beside the point. The fact is DJ Meta 4 was cool like that.

This street-credded sound slinger, alongside DJ Radamas, holds down the main room at Space each and every Saturday night. And if you know Space, then you know for that for the last two months the megaclub's main room has been heavy with hip-hop. And if you know Meta 4, then you know that beats don't get much meatier.

But Meta 4 didn't just waltz into Space a couple months ago and start dropping the knowledge. No, he's been turning the tables at downtown Miami's most-regarded dance joint for the past four years -- before the main room, he and Radamas held court in the club's loft. Now you might say they've taken hip-hop and put it front and center.
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Ghostly International 10 Year Anniversary Party at White Room on Art Basel Weekend

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Audion
A heads up to Miami's downtown cognoscenti: Michigan's esteemed Ghostly International label will be celebrating 10 years of forward-thinking music and subculture at White Room on Saturday, December 5. Founded in 1999 by DJ Sam Valenti, Ghostly has become one of the most highly-acclaimed international platforms for cutting-edge and genre-defying contemporary music and multimedia, along with its more dancefloor-centric sister imprint Spectral Sound.

Ghostly's eclectic musical contingent will be represented on December 5 by the experimental Detroit techno/avant-pop forays of Audion, a.k.a. Matthew Dear, electro-tech producers Michna and Bodycode, and synthpoppers Solvent, along with Get Physical's M.A.N.D.Y. and Miami's own DJ Conway. This much anticipated musical extravaganza also marks the return of Miami's beloved SAFE, who brought us some of the finest underground electronic dance music bookings of the last couple years, and will be teaming up with Miami's legendary festival audio designer Terry McNeil to guarantee this will be one night of mind-blowing sounds. 

Click here to get your $15 pre-sale tickets.

Ghostly International 10 Year Anniversary Party. Saturday, December 5. 10 p.m.-5 a.m. White Room. 1306 N. Miami Ave., Miami.


Head Spins: DJ Todd Stylez, Spinning Saturdays at Opera Lounge (With Free Mix)

Categories: DJ Mix, Head Spins
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​Nassau's gone funky and Nassau's got soul. Just ask The Beginning of the End, the band that sang all about just that in the classic "Funky Nassau." In fact, contrary to hum-drum, steel drum clichés, the Bahamian capital always has swung to a relatively citified beat.

So it only makes sense that a beat-crazed cat like DJ Todd Stylez would rise from such a place. Just as it only makes sense that such a place would inspire DJ Todd Stylez to stretch above and beyond any traditional island boundaries. But even the boldest Bahamians weren't ready when Stylez started pumping house into their favorite dancehall. And when he added electro to soca, well, you might say the whole town flipped its lid.

Within minutes, it seemed, Stylez was the most in-demand DJ on New Providence Island. Infinity, 601, Charlie's Club, Fluid; Stylez slaked all their crowds' thirsts. But there's probably not island in the world that boasts the multitudes this man planned to rock. So after winning every DJ award New Providence had to offer, Stylez slipped away across the Straits and landed in South Florida. They say Nassau hasn't been the same since.
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