Canadian bass music pioneers Zed’s Dead (Dylan “DC” Mamid and Zachary “Hooks” Rapp-Rovan) recently announced the launch of their record label, Altered States, and first of those brand new and steaming hot presses is a mixtape from the duo themselves. The new indie comes in collaboration with their pre-existing label Deadbeats (2016) which has acted as a phenomenal springboard for so many careers in the music industry.
Altered States will focus more on championing electronic, chill, and downtempo sounds led by the formidable pair as demonstrated by the release of Catching Zs, a thirteen-track mixtape.
Peaceful yet enthralling, Catching Z’s opens with ‘when i die i’mma come back’ and ‘exit row’, two sonic markers of talent showcasing Zeds Dead’s immense versatility in sound. Teaming up with vocalist Elliot Moss, ‘lost birds’ is a spellbinding whirlwind of raw vocal sincerity and downtempo production prowess. Track number four, ‘phuket sunrise’, errs on the downtempo side again with an exciting breakbeat boost in the second half, energetically feeding into ‘get what you need’, another impressive display of Zeds Dead’s percussive masterhand.
Transporting listeners to a place beyond the pines is ‘time is an illusion’, aptly named as Zeds Dead seemingly grab the reins of time for two minutes and seven seconds to usher in a cacophony of tranquility. ‘i think you’re cool’ featuring Jenna Pemkowski elicits divine feminine energy as the singer’s buoyant vocal work hypnotizes, while stirring soundscapes whirr. Slightly wonky, ‘desert fractal’ features chilled out worldly beats, as ‘late night drive’ uses chilling chord progressions to combine with sweeping 808s. Clocking in at just under one minute is ‘forever alone’, a haunting segue into ‘don’t close your eyes’, another bone-chilling display of Zeds Dead’s knack for all things downtempo. Closing out Catching Z’s is ‘over and over’ and ’93 ’til now’, two burgeoning tracks to leave a final lasting impression, as well as a taste of what is yet to come from Altered States.
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