D.V.S* – HIT THE CLOUDS RUNNING
BY: CASEY JONES
If the electronic music scene was an ocean it would be overfilled with fish right now. If you were to be in a boat and take a look into the electronic ocean you’d see a lot of trapfish, dubsharks and a school of Skrillex (there is no fish name for Skrillex, it’s just Skrillex). Unless you’re an avid fisherman this analogy probably makes no sense to you. The electronic music scene has become overrun with the same 3-4 subgenres ruling the radio, club, and festival scene. In a scene so overfilled it really is hard to find a fish, which stands out from the rest. An artist that has constructed his own, unique sound is a really difficult, but also rewarding, task to accomplish. About a year looking for new music I stumbled across someone whose sound truly made me go “WOAH! This is different and I absolutely love it!” That artist’s name is Derek VanScoten (D.V.S*) out of Brooklyn, New York and he just released Hit the Clouds Running, 10 beautiful tracks that the world definitely needs but might not be ready for yet.
“Sleepwalker” kicks off the album with a little help Cherub, one of our favorite artists, and Govinda. The song opens with Govinda’s violin leading the sexy, smooth vocals of Cherub into the signature sound of Derek’s guitar. Those 3 things put together trully make you feel like you’re on Clouds.
“Roll The Dice” is the next track and features Chantel, his wife, on vocals. This song is a little heavier but a little heavier than clouds is still very soft. Chantel sings “Roll the dice for a surpsrise…” an open invitation to take a chance, try something new and see where it leads you. “Roll The Dice” serves a nice blend of dubstep and live guitar, something D.V.S* is very, very good at.
“Peppermint Sky” is much more fast paced and it features Derek just going to town on his guitar there is also definitely some violin in there. His guitar play on here is comparable to that of our good friends, Cherub.
“Root Glen” starts off to the tune of a fast moving heart then mellows out ever so gently over the soft plucks of guitar strings. This could serve as the perfect soundtrack to cruising along the coast on a gorgeous, summer day.
“Heartmaps” succeeds in being very mellow but also incredibly danceable at the same time. The guitar play kind of reminds me of Hunter Brown from STS9 on this one.
“Flash FWD” is potentially the most beautiful song on the album. The harmonies, melodies and everything in between converge masterfully to create a track that one would play after climbing a mountain or saving a life. This is the sound of triumph and achievement.
“Blame Me” features some very pretty vocal samples over a kick-drum beat. This is another very mellow but also very danceable track. Remember that whole rant about finding artists with their own sounds? Yeah, this is his.
“The Emblem” features Supersillyus and has quite the hip-hop feel to it. You could easily throw some rap vocals over it and it would be more than passable.
“Trapsody in Blue” explores the idea of what would happen if trap met guitar. The results? A ROCK ANTHEM BANGER CLASSIC! Really though, it’s a very good track and it just goes to show you that everyone has fallen for the trap.
The final song is “Vault of Stars” and features dub & glitch specialist Psymbionic out of Austin, Texas. This track blends together both of their styles and, as you could guess, the results are quite good. A very low-tempo, dubbed out, mellow tune sends Hit the Clouds Running off into the sunset with poise, grace and style.
Hit the Clouds Running is a beautiful work of art. Blending together so many different genres of music, it’s a tour of the beautiful parts of electronic music. D.V.S* is a fish that stands out from the rest. Instead of giving in and making the music that will get him blown up and famous (which he probably could) he only takes elements of that music, adding it to his guitar-heavy stew with the results always coming out tasty. D.V.S* is a true artist and as long as he keeps doing what he does, more people will listen and more people will realize that it’s not about quantity, it’s about quality. Rage On, Derek VanScoten, Ray John.