Kraak and Smaak
Since the Dutch trio of producers Kraak & Smaak released their first album 'Boogie Angst' worldwide in 2005, the boys' act has steadily grown into a well-respected force in today's international club and festival scene.
The first time the live band was put together and played was a one-off to promote the producers’ album. But after that show premiered in Amsterdam, with its energetic mix of funk, disco and house, plus a heavy dose of rock 'n roll attitude, the reaction convinced the band to embark on a follow up tour in the Netherlands.
Their set-up, combining the club sound of their releases with live musicians and vocalists, turned out to be a musical phenomenon on the Dutch circuit, leading to invitations to play at Europe’s festivals and renowned USA hotspots like SXSW, Coachella, Miami's WMC and New York's CMJ.
The second album 'Plastic People' dropped in 2008, and off that album, the hit single 'Squeeze Me', made for an even more rapid international rise of K&S. The acclaimed UK dance magazine IDJ labelled K&S as a “Must see live act”, together with big guns as the Chemical Brothers, Moby and The Prodigy. The band subsequently performed at the 'holy grail of festivals' Glastonbury in the UK, Lowlands in the Netherlands and again Europe's biggest festival, Sziget. During a five-week live tour across the USA they performed at Jimmy Kimmel's late night show on ABC television and further explicit support came from US Celebrity blogger Perez Hilton, who describes K&S as ‘Amy Winehouse meets Moby’. Even Kanye West declared himself a fan! And to top things off, the European Border Breakers Award (EBBA) is won, together with none other than Adele.
In the following years, the upward trend of K&S is continued and solidified with the albums 'Electric Hustle' (2011) and 'Chrome Waves' (2013). A grueling schedule of international touring includes career highlight shows at Detroit Movement, Sziget, Glastonbury and Exit, and key single releases in this period include “Let’s Go Back” which features a superb vocal from the sadly departed Romanthony, The Future Is Yours” (which saw the band hook up a second time with Ben Westbeech who at the time was hitting the top of the charts under his Breach guise), and the soulful “How We Gonna Stop The Time” - an instant club hit that went on to be licensed for release on Axtone Records. New remix work comes through for Moby, Aretha Franklin, Chromatics, and Royksopp, and 2015 sees a one-off single release on Spinnin’ Records.
The current, 5th, album Juicy Fruit, released last Summer, has seen the boys returning to the more organic sound of their debut record. As usual it contains some heavyweight collaborations, including Americans Mayer Hawthorne and Eric Biddiness, and Australians Parcels and Cleopold to name just a few. In the US, initial support comes from KCRW (Top Tune #1 for ‘Hands of Time’) and a #2 position in the USA’s College radio CMJ / RPM charts for I’Don’t Know Why’ .
The UK duo, known for their sensational disco and psychedelic edits, obscenely vast record collections, beautiful production work and transcendent mixtape journeys, are being heralded as a truly unique and positive presence in today's music scene.
"Fucking Brilliant" ¬ DJ Mag
Although Tom and Danny have both been utterly immersed in music since time itself began, Psychemagik's first appearance on wax was an edit of Fleetwood Mac's 'Everywhere', which quickly found its way into the record bags of veterans like Tom Middleton and Greg Wilson, and instantly cemented their place in the disco music world. The duo have since released a string of highly acclaimed edits, original productions and remixes.
They regularly play at major festivals, clubs and special events all over the UK and Europe – with tours in the USA and Australia set for 2013.
"An ear for mind-expanding dance floor mysticism" ¬– FACT Magazine
Their studio output is prolific to say the least; Valley Of Paradise, the first single from their debut album, sold out on pre-orders and was followed by a slew of incredible remixes from the likes of Greg Wilson, Time and Space Machine, Toby Tobias and Rayko and received critical acclaim and airplay worldwide. Recent remix projects include Azari & III, Metronomy, Kraak and Smaak, Crystal Fighters, Yacht, Time and Space Machine, The Egg, Skinny Lister and The Cuban Brothers.
"Remixers du jour" – Mixmag
And then there's the edits. Their recent version of Fleetwood Mac's 'Dreams', a follow up to 'Everywhere', topped the Hype Machine charts and has been gaining some serious props from around the globe. They have also released a string of edits on their Healin' Feelin and Discotheque Wreckers imprints, all of which have made it into the Juno top sellers list.
Their mixes paint the story of two extraordinarily talented and passionate guys. Some blatantly show that Psychemagik can absolutely dominate a dancefloor. Others, like their guest mixes for the Test Pressing podcast, are gorgeously composed psychedelic experiences, which give you an idea of just how deep and amazing their record collections really are. Basically, you can bet that they have the perfect record for any time and any place.
"Perfectly deconstructed Hot Chip's sound for their support slot…Fantastic"
They also have a reputation as the go to guys for mega rare records you won't find anywhere else. Their satisfied customers include 2 Many Dj's/Soulwax, Chemical Brothers, Q-Tip, Fake Blood amongst many others.
It is this incredible ear for musical treasures and their dedication to the art of digging that has lead to the success of their recent compilation, Psychemagik Presents: 'Magik Cyrkles' on Leng Records, which sold out worldwide on vinyl within 48 hours of its release and went straight to number one in the Juno bestsellers chart on CD. With a wealth of upcoming releases and their debut studio LP just around the corner, they've already set the controls for the heart of the sun and will be heading into a whole new stratosphere of creativity in 2013.
Dubbed "The post-post synth pop king" by LA Weekly, L.A. producer/songwriter Blake Robin (aka LUXXURY, aka Baron von Luxxury) seeks the fine line dividing what is cool from what is deeply embarrassing. Having referenced Moroder and Steely Dan with equal respect on his last album "The Last Seduction"(Manimal Vinyl), he is currently in the studio finishing up his 3rd album with collaborator Billy Caruso (Laco$te, Corridor) on which he doubles down on '78 California vibes. Tentatively titled "How to Be Good", the new Luxxury sound eschews synths in favor of a smooth-yet-dance-able vintage disco/funk sound. As a DJ and remixer, his Luxxury Edit series are very popular, as are his remixes for Austra, HEALTH, Glass Candy and many more.