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Acquiring Influence: Squish Hop Down Under

I first came across S.D./L.A. electronic musician Sponge at a weekend Burning Man party last year in the hills of North County, where he played an afternoon set (stream it) unlike anything I had ever heard.

The futuristic groove drew from elements of glitch hop, IDM, and dubstep while avoiding the clichés of each genre. No cheesy bass drops. No sterile computer chatter. Just well-produced soundscapes that explored fresh sonic territory without alienating themselves from the beat.

Sponge calls it “squish hop.”

So maybe it’s no wonder, then, that world class Australian label Adapted Records turned to Sponge to orchestrate their debut Acquiring Influence (free download) compilation.


Released yesterday, the album expands the lexicon of glitch, downtempo, psydub, bass, neuro hop, and mid-tempo with 23 tracks including a handful by San Diego and Los Angeles artists.


Local metaphysical mover/shaker Michael “Divinity” Mannino (RealEyes) showcases his staple wobble bass overlaid with a M.L.K. Jr. sample:


Deviating from the progressive/psy techno released under his Nikroma moniker, Kromagon finds an introspective psydub mood on “Salami Step” -named for the fact that it was completed while the local producer vacationed in Ferrara, Italy:


San Diego dubstep ambassador Puppy Kicker brings some bootylicious bass and beats:


And a closing track from Osal8 - a resident authority on glitchy bassy fringe sounds and the guy behind the groundbreaking Elev8 events.

A recent addition to the legendary Enig’matik Records roster (also Aussie - whatcha all drinking down under?), Osal8 recently hosted Mustard Tiger (Adapted) and Enig’matik labelhead Sun in Aquarius at Winston’s.

I don’t even know what to say about this track. Just listen. Holy wow.


To give you an idea of what the meticulous sound design behind Enig’matik is all about, check out this number by MindBuffer.

You know when you eat too many mushrooms and you get launched into The Void and realize/remember that all the human stuff that gets you excited/scared/bored/angry is all just this super fragile and insignificant sea foam floating in sweet oblivion on the surface of a bottomless ocean of infinity and really nobody knows a whole lot about anything and all you can do is hang on to your ass and try not to look the thousand-headed serpent directly in any one of his two-thousand big, beady, eternally judging eyes?

This is the soundtrack to that moment.


Join Elev8 and RealEyes in squishing da Sponge along with Osal8, Divinity, and Grouch (Enig’matik) on September 29 at Spin Nightclub (2028 Hancock St. - Middletown).

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I first came across S.D./L.A. electronic musician Sponge at a weekend Burning Man party last year in the hills of North County, where he played an afternoon set (stream it) unlike anything I had ever heard.

The futuristic groove drew from elements of glitch hop, IDM, and dubstep while avoiding the clichés of each genre. No cheesy bass drops. No sterile computer chatter. Just well-produced soundscapes that explored fresh sonic territory without alienating themselves from the beat.

Sponge calls it “squish hop.”

So maybe it’s no wonder, then, that world class Australian label Adapted Records turned to Sponge to orchestrate their debut Acquiring Influence (free download) compilation.


Released yesterday, the album expands the lexicon of glitch, downtempo, psydub, bass, neuro hop, and mid-tempo with 23 tracks including a handful by San Diego and Los Angeles artists.


Local metaphysical mover/shaker Michael “Divinity” Mannino (RealEyes) showcases his staple wobble bass overlaid with a M.L.K. Jr. sample:


Deviating from the progressive/psy techno released under his Nikroma moniker, Kromagon finds an introspective psydub mood on “Salami Step” -named for the fact that it was completed while the local producer vacationed in Ferrara, Italy:


San Diego dubstep ambassador Puppy Kicker brings some bootylicious bass and beats:


And a closing track from Osal8 - a resident authority on glitchy bassy fringe sounds and the guy behind the groundbreaking Elev8 events.

A recent addition to the legendary Enig’matik Records roster (also Aussie - whatcha all drinking down under?), Osal8 recently hosted Mustard Tiger (Adapted) and Enig’matik labelhead Sun in Aquarius at Winston’s.

I don’t even know what to say about this track. Just listen. Holy wow.


To give you an idea of what the meticulous sound design behind Enig’matik is all about, check out this number by MindBuffer.

You know when you eat too many mushrooms and you get launched into The Void and realize/remember that all the human stuff that gets you excited/scared/bored/angry is all just this super fragile and insignificant sea foam floating in sweet oblivion on the surface of a bottomless ocean of infinity and really nobody knows a whole lot about anything and all you can do is hang on to your ass and try not to look the thousand-headed serpent directly in any one of his two-thousand big, beady, eternally judging eyes?

This is the soundtrack to that moment.


Join Elev8 and RealEyes in squishing da Sponge along with Osal8, Divinity, and Grouch (Enig’matik) on September 29 at Spin Nightclub (2028 Hancock St. - Middletown).

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