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Exploring the Sonic Universe of Mike Nasty’s ‘Black Planet’: An In-Depth Track Talk.

Kono Vidovic April 5, 2024 64 3 5

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Hello, rhythm aficionados and beat seekers! It’s Kono Vidovic, back again to guide you through another auditory expedition that promises to enchant and inspire. Today, we’re spotlighting a luminary of the New York City music scene, Mike Nash, widely acclaimed as Mike Nasty. Beyond being a maestro DJ, producer, and event curator, Mike has elegantly fused his love for unique sounds with an authentic flair for sneaker culture and streetwear, making him a standout icon in both music and fashion.

Having previously reviewed his captivating “Jazz Club NYC EP,” which masterfully blends the timeless allure of jazz with contemporary grooves, it’s exhilarating to delve into his latest endeavor, “Black Planet.” Over 14 transformative years, Mike Nasty has solidified his reputation by seamlessly weaving through the genres of House, Hip-Hop, and R&B. His performances are not just sets but mesmerizing musical journeys, thanks to his innovative scratch techniques and discerning track selections that guarantee to energize any crowd.

As we prepare to navigate the intricate soundscapes of “Black Planet,” it’s clear Mike Nasty continues to push the envelope, challenging both himself and his listeners to explore new sonic territories. This album is more than just a collection of tracks; it’s a narrative of artistic growth, cultural homage, and the relentless pursuit of musical excellence. So, let’s set off on this latest voyage with Mike Nasty, ready to be enthralled by the depth and diversity of his musical genius. Fasten your seatbelts, this is going to be an exhilarating ride!

Cosmic Funk:

Cosmic Funk is heavily inspired by funk legends Bootsy Collins and George Clinton. I’ve been obsessed with not only their music but the cover art of each of their vinyl records. The homie Pim worked on this record with me. With this being the intro track to the album, I wanted to place the listener in an atmospheric joy ride throughout the galaxy. The instrument foundation for the track is layered with gospel influenced organs, synth bass, rhodes, grand piano and the flute. I think this track sets the tone quite nicely for the rest of the project. The organ segment towards the end of the song is an ode to my late Grandfather whose church I grew up in.

Gimme the Rhythm:

This track was chaotic to arrange but in a good way. This may be my most detailed song to this day. I started the record with a basic chord progression (that didn’t make the final cut) and the bassline you hear. It was a bare bones record until I tapped a peer named Keith to help bring the grand piano to life in the track. From there, it only made sense to add horns to the record. This is where things get interesting. I enlisted two separate horn sections to record their own takes to the song. After hearing both takes from their sessions, I realized that I couldn’t pick one group over the other so I added both arrangements to the record. After quite some time, I made it all work out. Somehow I got the horn arrangements to sound like one cohesive recording. One of my proudest moments to date. 

Satin Starlight:

Satin Starlight was originally titled “Afro Jazz.” This was the first song I worked on and finished for the album. I was at my home messing around with a Rhodes piano plugin and began to put the song together on Instagram live for a few of the fans. To my knowledge, most of the song was completed that day outside of the bassline and trumpet solos. Similar to Gimme the Rhythm, I contacted two separate trumpeters to play solos on the record. Frank and Mykhailo are so talented. Once again, I couldn’t pick just one solo so I added both into the song creating Satin Starlight. 

Mind Made Up:

Mind Made Up is one of the later additions to the album process. Usually when I work on an album, the first 2-3 tracks are the hardest to complete in the creative process, but later songs like this are enjoyable due to peace of mind. Pim assisted with this track as well as a flutist named Adriano. I believe we finished this track in about a week or two. This record may be the best on the album the more I listen to it. I think it’ll be the strongest over time. 

Mother Earth:

This magnificent song is a tribute to my Mother. She’s the love of my life and my biggest supporter. My mom is my inspiration. You can feel the love and emotion in the track. This is a pretty simple track when it all boils down to it. A little bit of r&b, soul and afro influence. I feel like crying on the inside anytime I listen to this song. If you have someone in your life that you love as much as I do, Mother Earth is for you. 

Streets of Rage:

Madness. Pure Madness. The title of this song is a nod to the classic Sega Genesis video game from the early 90s. The underlying theme behind the record represents the pain and plight African Americans have experienced living in the United States of America historically. This struggle is still ongoing and plagues many individuals across the nation. This is the longest track I’ve ever made sitting at 10 minutes and 4 seconds. The track features the talented Omari Clarke. We made this song in one day out in Los Angeles, California. Every single synth in the song was made with an actual Roland Juno 106. No VSTs on this one. Streets of Rage wasn’t originally meant to be on the album. We made this track roughly 2 years ago, but I felt the music was timeless so it had to be the outro to Black Planet. 

End conclusion.

And there you have it, folks, a glimpse into the universe that Mike Nasty has masterfully crafted with “Black Planet.” Each track, a world of its own, invites us into the vast expanse of Mike’s musical genius, where every beat, every note, and every rhythm tells a story. A heartfelt thank you to Mike Nasty for sharing his vision and vibrancy with us. For those yearning to keep the journey alive, “Black Planet” awaits your eager ears. Head over to Mike Nasty’s Bandcamp to grab your digital copy or stream this masterpiece into your life. Dive into the rhythm, embrace the melody, and let “Black Planet” be your guide to new musical horizons.

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Kono Vidovic at Dirty Disco

Kono Vidovic

DJ | MUSIC CURATOR & SELECTOR | PODCAST MAKER | BLOGGER Professional online interpreneur. Coffee practitioner. Electronic music culture maven. Total music guru. Infuriatingly humble problem solver. Food & sports fanatic.

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