by Danial Orchard Photo

This is Chp Smks, pronounced cheap smokes.  The producer started out with a serious electro sound, and a rare ability to balance the melodic with the hard hitting edge.  It was just about a year ago we caught a live set from him, and not long after arrived a lengthy list of songs and remixes.  Some standouts are the originals; They Came From The Stars, and 8-Bit Abyss and the remixes of Algeronics; I'm Back and Lana Del Rey; Video Games.  He's promised he's been hard at work on an EP, and we are happy to announce that it's almost here.

The aim is to release the Dusk EP free in March on  So far remixes from Deadlights (Canada) and Knooper (Portugal) have been confirmed and will definitely be a part of the release.


"Dusk" EP (Preview) by CHPSMKS


We caught up with Chp Smks as he was winding up the recording process for the EP.

Fingers on Blast: This music is different from what we're used to from you.  After quite a few solid tracks and remixes you've taken a but of a turn from electro and slowed things down. What did you do differently in the recording process?

Chp Smks: I still definitely want to make some heavier/trash electro in the future, as I'll always love that genre. The recording process started out as it always have, until I plugged the guitar in. It changed everything. I used to play in bands and lead guitar was always a passion of mine, so I wanted to sort of mesh the two together.

Fingers on Blast: There must be a few artists you've been listening to that helped inspire this shift, who are they and what were the big tunes that you loved while you were making this?

Chp Smks: Oh yes, inspiration is what starts it all! I'd been listening to a lot of Barretso - Celeste EP, mainly the song "Mirage". "Big Black Delta - Huggin' & Kissin'" basically on repeat for a while there haha. I found Moustache Machine, on Soundcloud, and basically anything on there is definitely worth checking out! Of course, Kavinsky, and 4Trakz were inspiration for me as well. But the biggest two, are F.O.O.L and Danger, which are my favourite artists. Anything by either of them is solid. Oh, and recently found out about Com Truise, amazing work.

Fingers on Blast: The Dusk EP has a feel that is reminiscent of a film soundtrack, was that intended? How do you feel about the idea of your music being used in another medium like that?

Chp Smks: The intention or "meaning" if you will, was something quite close to how I was feeling at the time. I had been trying to figure out my next move, with college and where to live and money etc. But I could listen to music, or go out at night. And kind of forget about that stuff for a brief moment. And it's something about the night, that kind of makes anything seem possible. Anyways, it's meant to be played maybe at a pre drink or by yourself as you get ready to go out, or even while you're driving downtown as the night starts. It's also though, about living in the moment, because eventually time passes by, and "memories fade" as the lyrics say in the song "These Moments". Take it how you want to interpret I'd say, and I'd definitely love for film to use my songs, if it'd help their stories.


Photographer: Ysa Perez

Drop The Lime by Ysa Perez


Danny Brown by Ysa Perez.


Someone told me once that those people who say they are bored, are mistaken.  They are in fact boring.  So aimlessly looking for something I haven't seen before from one of the many artists whose work I can admire is when unproductivity can lead to boredom.  That 20 minutes spent on soundcloud listening to new music, and reading tweets somehow led to giving up the search and looking at

Ysa Perez is a photographer with a huge list of publications she's shot for.  Her real name is Ysanya but she's said no one calls her that because of the challenge it poses to pronounce.  I don't remember when I first discovered this talent, but I know I heard my photography minded friends mention her in high regard time and again. 

I think the first projects I saw where I stopped and said 'I know that name' were her shoots for GQ; GQ's Best New Designer Party 2011 and Diplo's Top Ten Travel Essentials.  Today I learned something that was right there all along.  Ysa Perez took a good number of the ASAP ROCKY photos that are now household images. 

Read more about this and Ysa, the focus of her work, her dream shoot and so much more in this incredible Respect Magazine Interview.

Jeffrey Wright by Ysa Perez


In a day and age when technology is making many artforms more accessible it is refreshing and ultimately very inspiring to see people excel who use their personality as much as technical aspects of their craft, if not more.  I can't say for sure, but looking through Ysa's portfolio it seems like she has a disarming effect on a lot of her subjects.  They let her see who they truly are at that moment.  We are fortunate that she shares those images with us.


Climax Remix!

Asa has dropped a remix of 'Climax' by Usher and Diplo, and even those the tune itself has only been out a few days this remix is so welcome in our iTunes.  Follow Asa on twitter.

Cl!max R3m!x by Asa.


Dark City: Beneath The Beat

Watch this video, and if you're not sure why you should then read below.

 I tripped over the link to this video today.  I followed a tweet from @djsega to the Kickstarter page for Dark City: Beneath the Beat.  Unfamiliar with Kickstarter, I started reading about the film and how it depicted the impact of the music on young peoples lives.  'The music reflects the state of mind of the city, rough, dirty, hard-hitting... the struggle.' - Murder Mark, producer.

The film shows how vital this music scene is in the community and how far reaching the influence of the music really is.  Prior to being exposed to Baltimore Club Music I responded to the sound as techniques were used in music with a broader audience.  To this day the influence of Baltimore Club music remains an unsung hero of popular music.

The film includes a song that I recognized immediately and I will probably love until I'm old enough to forget that it's by Blaqstarr and that it's called 'Ryda Girl'.  I make no claim to be an authority on this music, and definitely not on the scene.  That's exactly why I'm inspired to help this film finish production. 

Have you ever heard of LMFAO?  If you've gotten down to 'Party Rock Anthem' then you have felt the raw influence of Club Music.  What you should do next is check out what TT The Artist is doing with this project on Kickstarter.  You can read wikipedia's brief description of what Bmore club really is.  Music makes an impression on anyone who hears it and is a part of it. 

This film will shed light on how big an impression this music scene has had on the world of music as a whole.  I think it's incredibly telling of our potential in this era that I can support this documentary being made using technology and social media.  I am thankful to have a chance to do so.

As far as monetary contributions go there are a few different options, and they come with Murder Mark cd's, DVD copies of the completed film, and t shirts.  It's easy to do on the Kickstarter page.  The film needs a total of $4000 to complete production on schedule for the June 7, 2012 premier which is set to take place at the Creative Alliance Patterson Theatre in Baltimore, Maryland.

Even you don't support the film everybody should know where this music originates.

by yahohyah


Skream remixes Rusko

Everybody's looking for somebody to love!


The good people at Spin have been kind enough to make the Skream remix of Rusko's newest single 'Somebody To Love' a FREE DOWNLOAD, and yes if you're wondering that is a 320 kbps 'dj friendly' mp3 they've provided