Relative “New Kids on the Block,” British duo Guy and Howard Lawrence, artistically known as Disclosure, have been making serious waves in the music industry over the last twelve months. Their obvious talent fuelled by an energised social media strategy has propelled them into the limelight. But we wanted to find out what it is that makes them so social…

Disclosure - Mix 'n' Sync Blog

Disclosure made their debut in the electronic music scene back in 2010 with their first single “Offline Dexterity.” Following that release, the group focused mainly on remixes through 2010-2011, re-envisioning songs from notable artists such as Q-Tip and fellow Brit Emeli Sande to help them break into the industry.

The end of 2011 and beginning of 2012 saw Disclosure burst onto the commercial scene, releasing their next original single “Tenderly / Flow” from the EP The Face, which also featured a popular remix to Jessie Ware’s “Running.” Disclosure has continued to see growing success since The Face, dropping its Mercury and Grammy nominated debut studio album, Settle in 2013 with the wildly popular tracks “Latch,” “White Noise,” and “When A Fire Starts To Burn”.

Social Overview

Predictably, Facebook is the first social network that Disclosure used, joining in July 2010 very shortly before the release of their first single. Facebook is also the group’s most popular social network, reaching 500,000 likes in December of 2013. Soundcloud is Disclosure’s second most popular social network as of December 2013, with just over 450,000 followers, followed by Twitter at just over 233,000 followers, YouTube at just over 160,000 subscribers(!), and finally Instagram at almost 75,000 followers.

Interestingly enough, although Soundcloud is the group’s second most popular social network, they have only posted 14 original “sounds” with a few additional re-posts of remixes of their music – which suggests that if you have great content, people will find you.

November 15 – December 20, 2013

Throughout this period, Disclosure posted the following on its various social media platforms:

–       22 Facebook posts

–       Approximately 170 Tweets

–       1 Soundcloud upload

–       17 Instagram posts

The group generally posts on Facebook every 1-5 days, tweets approximately 2-5 times per day, and posts on Instagram every few days. While they make it very easy to stay connected and up-to-date with their group, the posting schedule is just enough so that it is not overwhelming in post frequency to the point that fans are driven away.

What They’re Saying

Disclosure’s content mainly falls into three categories, including new music, gig promotion / updates, and milestones. In general, posts about music and milestones gain the most traction across most of their social networks. Soundcloud and YouTube aside, they sync their updates across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and post popularity is generally consistent across these three platforms.

New Music

Disclosure regularly receives a positive response when posting new music, either original or otherwise. For example, their new song “Together” with Nile Rodgers, Sam Smith and Jimmy Napes earned 534 retweets and 450 favorites on Twitter, as well as almost 5,775 interactions on Facebook and 3,800 interactions on Instagram.

Collaborations with others / remixes also get a lot of positive feedback for Disclosure, as evidenced by their post about DJ Premier remixing one of their original songs “Latch.” This post gained almost 5,600 interactions on Facebook, 3,950 interactions on Instagram, and approx. 450 interactions on Twitter.

By Kike Aluko

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Music is for sharing, right? And, needless to say, we love music. So, here again, we’re going to share that love. In no particular order, wrap your lobes around some of these gems from the music underground…

The Field: Cupid’s Head (Kompakt)

The Field- Mix 'n' Sync Blog

Axel Willner has had it rough. It can’t be easy being an excellent electronic/techno producer who’s also the go-to darling of indie kids who want to name-check someone who operates without a guitar. You tend to get sneered at by both worlds in the end. That said, he was always come up with at the least, engrossing and emotive albums, even if none have ever really hit the heights of 2007’s “From Here We Go Sublime”. Until now. Cupid’s Head is definitely Willner’s best album to date. Check it out.

Buy Cupid’s Head here


Stillsuit: Stillsuit (self-released)

stillsuit - Mix 'n' Sync BlogIntense, claustrophobic, repetetive noise-punk from Oakland, California. Elements of krautrock… certainly reminds us of excellent equivalent Japanese noise trio Nisennmondai. Download for free from their website or buy on vinyl.



 Tim Hecker: Virgins (Kranky)

Tim Hecker - stillsuit - Mix 'n' Sync Blog


Tim Hecker has made his new album “Virgins” available to stream for free at NPR Music’s website. Go have a listen to one of our most anticipated albums of 2013 (it will be available to buy on 14th October).





James Holden: The Inheritors (Border Community)

James Holden - The Inheritors on Mix 'n' SyncIt’s been around a few months now but James Holden’s follow up to ‘The Idiots Are Winning‘ gets better with every listen. 2nd album syndrome? The 7 year wait has been well worth it.


Le Carousel: Le Carousel Remixed (Phil Kieran Recordings)

Le Carousel - Le Carousel Remixed (Phil Kieran) - Mix 'n' Sync Blog

We didn’t speak about the original album when it came out and we should have done. Le Carousel from acclaimed Techno producer, Phil Kieran is great. It’s emotive electronica that helps us to dream. Nevertheless, the remix album, with sublime work from the likes of Ivan Smagghe, Max Cooper and David Holmes, is out now. And it’s great too. We’d urge you to listen to this. This is Forget Me Not from the original album:

And Andrew Weatherall’s remix of Lose Your Love:

And finally…

DJ Fresh & Mindtunes

Sometimes you come across videos that can simply lift your day and give added inspiration. Here’s one such video. Mindtunes is a track made by 3 physically disabled music fans, using only one instrument: their mind. Produced by Drum and Bass legend, DJ Fresh. Here’s the mini-documentary.

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We listen, read and watch a wealth of interesting, enjoyable and sometimes disgraceful content on the web every week. So, of course we thought we should be sharing this with you. In no order, here’s what’s good in the world this week…

Andrew Weatherall – Self Portrait

Andrew Weatherall is a bit of a legend around these, and most parts. We stumbled upon a lovely video portrait of the Chairman filmed in his studio where he talks about music, art and life.

Fred P. a.k.a. Black Jazz Consortium Podcast

This Fred P podcast from XLR8R is a couple of years old now but when you find House and Techno played the way it should be, it never gets old!

Fred P. Podcast - Mix 'n' SyncSilk Flowers – Band of Colour

Some primo synthwave from New York trio, Silk Flowers. 2011 album Ltd. Form is definitely one to check out.

Leyland Kirby & Modern Love

We’re very excited to hear the news that Leyland Kirby is making a new album under his “The Stranger” moniker for Modern Love. These two should make a great fit. Read More.

TNT Subhead

Premier Portuguese house head, Tiago Miranda returns as TNT Subhead with this great number.

Stephan Mathieu

Check out this list put together for Dusted Magazine, of musical influences & loves from avant garde electronic pioneer Stephan Mathieu

Stephan Mathieu Musical Influences - Mix 'n' Sync via Dusted Mag

Four Tet: Looking Back, Moving Forward

An intimate mini-documentary about Four Tet on the 10th Anniversary of his breakthrough album Rounds. In his own words.

Califone – Sitches Tumblr Video

Califone teamed with filmmaker Braden King and programmer Jeff Garneau to make a unique video for the title track from their new album “Stitches.” Upon entering the Califonestitches Tumblr page and activating the program, the video to randomly pulls images and GIFs from a selected set of Tumblr sites to to create something original and haunting. Give it a look.

Califone - Sitches Tumbly Video - Mix 'n' Sync

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At Mix ‘n’ Sync we pride ourselves in keeping well up to date with the evolution of music and culture. And, two new  electronic genres that have been growing from strength to strength and setting dance floors on fire are Trap and Moombahton. What the flip is this you ask? Well, as we’ve recently signed Rebel Sonix, a production collective that are pioneering these sounds in the UK, we thought we’d get them to explain.

So, over to Larry, from Rebel Sonix

We have been playing a lot of Trap and Moombahton music lately, music which has its origins in the US. Coming from the UK, we are used to being the innovators of Electronic music but our friends on the other side of the Atlantic are doing a pretty good job of that themselves lately.

Trap is the collision between Hip-Hop and Dance music. Its music that has the black and white kids raving under the same roof on the same dance floor. Its Dubstep without the competition to make the most offensive noise and with a large dollop of 808 bass and drums.

This is a fascinating documentary on Trap Music and its origins from Mad Decent home of Diplo, Major Lazer etc….

Moombahton is the lovechild of Reggaeton, House music, Dubstep and Dancehall. Spawned by Dave Nada playing Dutch House at 110 bpm to try to get round Djing to a bunch of Reggaeton fans armed only with Dutch House records, its a big melting point of styles and sounds.

Here is a piece in the Guardian about how Moombahton came about in more detail.

At Rebel HQ we have been producing a lot of Moombahton and also have a few Trap tunes ready to drop soon!


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A lot of end of year write-ups have started “It’s not been a great year for music, but…” Well for one, they’re wrong, and two, that “but” signifies they know they’re wrong. Lazy intro writing would be a more accurate description, I think (just like here). What I have noticed is that this year I have bought less guitar/band music than I can ever remember buying… in the top 10 list below there is only one band (and in fairness, their album is a doozy). Invention and talent is being swallowed by the women & men who dabble with sampling, synths and electronics.

I see a connection between these times and the late 80’s. We share a Tory government that has little or no regard to the majority of the population – has there ever been a non-policy as insidious as “Big Society”? – appropriating the hard work & success of others? Congratulations, you’ve destroyed the point of government! Oh and by the way, employment lawyers are gearing up for a minefield in 2013 as that same government will further remove workers rights and any impediment to companies firing whomever they want. Cheers!.

Anyway, back on topic; in ‘87 the response to the hard times and austerity was with raves fuelled by ecstasy. A mass movement of taking back disused space, and bringing in the music and people… this time though, the response has been with some the iciest techno/electronic music ever. Dubstep and ambient have been fully assimilated. The electronic music is glacial and ominous… it paints a bleak look at the present and the hopelessness of the future. That said, it’s produced some truly amazing, innovative work.

Enough nonsense. Here we go…

10. Flying Lotus: Until the Quiet Comes (Warp)

Flying Lotus - Albums of 2012 Mix n SyncMuch more cohesive than the spasmodic Cosmogramma, this is Steven Ellison’s best work yet. People will stop by for the Thom Yorke cameo (though it’s virtually unrecognisable), but I hope they stay for the sheer inventiveness of his songs.

 9. Blondes: Blondes (Rvng Intl.)

Blondes Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

The first full length from the Berlin-based duo brings together their previously released 12”s and a couple of new tracks. It doesn’t contain the bouncing joyousness of their earlier EP “Touched” but that may not have been the point. It’s always engrossing the their improv./jam approach to their genre creates an engrossing slice of house/techno. The bonus remixes from the likes of Rene Hell and Andy Stott are well worth checking out too

 8. Raime: Quarter Turns over a Living Line (Blackest Ever Black)

Raime - Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

As solid a representation of Blackest Ever Black’s aesthetic as you can get. Urban, dense, industrial dub techno – following up from a string of EPs and 12”s this is a fine debut album from Raime. Along with those purveyors of dread-filled techno on Modern Love, this is a suitable microcosm of these worried times.

 7. Murmer: What are the Roots that Clutch (Helen Scarsdale)

Murmer - Albums of 2012 Mix n SyncPatrick McGinley under his ‘Murmer’ moniker constructs compositions from his field recordings taken from locals all round the world. The works of  Thomas Köner would be a good reference point for this album – drone, silence and ambience. It demands your complete attention.

 6.Merchandise: Children of Desire (Katorga Works)

Merchandise - Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

This took me by surprise. Hadn’t been aware of Merchandise until I made one of my blind purchases of an act that was getting interesting write ups. I sat at my desk working, stuck the album on, and was then gradually taken away from what I was doing until I had to stop and give Children of Desire my full attention. If I was part of larger labels than Katorga, I’d be doing my damndest to sign them… as I’m not, I hope they stay right where they are. Highly accomplished dark synth-wave. Recommended (obviously).

 5. Demdike Stare: Elemental (Modern Love)

Demdike Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

Demdike Stare produced my favourite album of last year, and followed up with another fantastic release. I’m not sure I have anything more to add to what I said last time around – this is another brilliant piece of work from one of the most forward thinking acts around.

4.Oren Ambarchi: Audience of One (Touch)
Oren - Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

Oren Ambarchi’s first solo album proper since 2007 was a little bit of a departure (advancement?) from his previous work – certainly, the cover of Ace Frehley’s “Fractured Mirror” was a surprise. And whilst this is a little more accessible than earlier stuff, that is definitely not to any detriment. At all. His experimental, electronic drone roots still shine through.

 3. Lee Gamble: Diversions 1994 – 1996 (Pan)

Lee Gamble - Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

Gamble has taken his collection of 90’s jungle, then chopped, slashed, sampled, slowed, mixed and has come up with quite spellbinding ambient results. A slow morphine-drip of an album, and like Merchandise’s ‘Children of Desire’, one of my most pleasant surprises of the year.

 2. Jam City: Classical Curves (Night Slugs)

Jam City - Albums of 2012 Mix n Sync

Batnuts-crazy, brilliant slice of… oh I don’t know… club/techno/house/dub/rnb. First put this on and I detected Dam Funk & Prince, but there’s huge depth to this work; you discover something new with each listen, and like the Lee Gamble release, it’s much, much more than the sum of its influences.

 1.Andy Stott: Luxury Problems (Modern Love)

Andy Stott - Number 1 Album of 2012 Mix n Sync

Stott has taken a grand step forward from last year’s Passed Me By/We Stay Together double EP release (and those were fabulous). Employing vocals from his old piano instructor Alison Skidmore, he’s created a dubstep-infused techno masterpiece here. From the opener ‘Numb’ to ‘Leaving’ it’s a perfectly formed album. Essential.

Other Albums, EPs, Reissues to explore:
 Laurie Spiegle: The Expanding Universe (Unseen Worlds

 Jürgen Müller: Science of the Sea (Digitalis)

 Jennifer Castle: Castlemusic (No Quarter)

 Jason Urick: I Love You (Thrill Jockey)

 Nico Muhly: Drones (Bedroom Community)

 John Roberts: Paper Frames EP (Dial)

 Lambchop: Mr. M (Merge)

 The Caretaker: Patience (After Sebald) (History Always Favours the Winners)

 Golden Retriever: Occupied with the Unspoken (Thrill Jockey)

 Sharon Van Etten: Tramp (Jagjaguwar)


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Despite the rich and varied musical heritage of Africa, her music been less celebrated and (obviously) sampled in the UK and US than its more famous cousin, the Caribbean. Recently, however, there has been a notable increase in the use of Afro vocals, beats and rhythms and here I’m going to talk a little about that and outline a very brief history of Afro music in the UK and US.

One of the first genres of Afro music to become famous worldwide was Afrobeat. It’s loved throughout the world for its fusion of African rhythms, high life, Juju and other traditional music with Jazz and Funk and is often sang in Yoruba pidgen English (a language derived from a mixture of English and Yoruba).

The Godfather of Afrobeat, Fela Ransome Kuti, and his sons Seun and Femi and band member and drummer Tony Allen, did, and still does much, to draw attention to the rich musicality of the African Continent, especially Western Africa and Afrobeat. Many saw Kuti celebrated in the recent world wide smash hit musical Fela!

Before Fela, Sierra Leone’s Afro Soul and Funkster Geraldo Pino made some great music, whom Kuti admitted influenced him considerably in creating is Afrobeat sound.

Western commercial artists since the 70s have been influenced by African music. Paul McCartney’s Band on The Run album featured Afro rhythms (much to Fela Kuti’s annoyance). The Brian Eno produced Talking Heads album ‘Remain in Light’ was heavily influenced by the likes of Fela Kuti. Damon Albarn is also well know for his passion for Malian music.

Recently, in clubs and warehouses of London there has been a surge of nights that pay homage to African music. On the forefront of these was Hugo Mendez’s Sofrito parties and Rita Ray’s and Max Reindherts nights the ‘Shrine London’. Of course, Giles Peterson has championed Afro music for many years, especially Afro Cuban.


Producers like Osunlade and his Yorbua records imprint and Jerome Sydenham and his Ibadan Records label have championed Afro inspired Afro House and Techno since the 90’s.

Osunlade/Yoruba Records

Jerome Sydenham/Ibadan Records

Osunlade and Jerome continue to influence other prolific producers and labels that continue to mix Afro rhythms and beats into House and Techno.

The prolific AtJazz..

the up and coming South African producer and DJ, Culoe De Song…

and label Tribe Records, shown here using Arabic Afro samples heavily.

Afro rhythms and drum patterns have also been studied, sliced, sampled to form the basis of beat patterns in a large number of other music genres. The raw loop of an African style poly-rhythm or beat pattern, as below, or an Afro vocal less rarely so.

There are examples in Jazz. Miles Davies uses them here, in a drum solo.

Techno Pioneer Richie Hawtin aka Plastikman created a Afro/percussive heavy track featuring soley African drum patterns and poly rhythms and a number of African instruments. It doesn’t have the same flow of most of Plastikman’s Techno tracks and its release is confusing for many. For such a leading light in the Techno world to do use Afro poly-rhythms in such a raw way pays homage to Techno’s use of African drums.

Recently the use of African drum rhythms are coming to the forefront of modern underground music. Funky (or Funki), Tropical and Bass is loaded with Afro rhythms and drum patterns.

Tickles – Call For Backup E.P…

Zed Bias – Trouble in the Streets.

Check out the beat heavy Afro style drums of UK Bass pioneer Blawan.

It’s not only the beats or snippets of vocal that are becoming more widespread. Full Afro vocals are being used and they’re now finding their way into commercial tracks much like Reggae, Ragga, Ska and other Caribbean music has done since the 70s.

Check out Sway..

and Afrikan Boy.

During a visit to Lagos in 2006 I noticed that a lot of new music from the area was merely an imitation of their American and Caribbean counterparts and recorded, more often than not, to poor effect. More recently however, many African artists have mixed their unique sound with Hip Hop, Ragga and R’B instead of imitating them, to create a hybrid sound. This is finding success in Western markets in much the same way as Fela and Co did when they developed Afrobeat. Recently Nigerian star D’banj, for example, has been signed to Kayne West’s label, GOOD Music.

Music lovers now travel thousands of miles to party in and amongst African artists in the continent itself. The Lake of Stars festival in Malawi celebrates the continents rich musical heritage as well as bringing over European and UK artists such as the Foals.

It’s refreshing to see the increasing influence of African music in underground scenes and increasingly so, in the mainstream. Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing where it might go in 2012. Viva Africa!


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10. Chris Forsyth: Paranoid Cat (Family Vineyard)

Philadelphia guitarist Chris Forsyth channels the twin spirits of John Fahey and Jack Rose to create an excellent album of americana. The record’s 21 minute title track is a three movement  build of atmospheric blues and ragga… Forsyth wears his influences on his sleeve for this album, but that’s no bad thing as he contrives to make them more than the sum of their parts.


9. Deaf Center: Owl Splinters (Type)

The first act ever released on the great Type imprint, Norwegian duo Erik Skodvin and Otto Totland step away from their other projects (Svarte Greiner and Nest) to reform as Deaf Center for their second album. Muted pianos, static, white noise… tracks flicker and crackle in and out of life. Nothing describes this music like the great genres listed on Type’s sister retail website, Boomkat… Home Listening / Modern Classical / Ambient.


8. The Caretaker: An Empty Bliss Beyond this World (History Always Favours the Winners)

Under his moniker “Caretaker” Leyland Kirby again returns to the themes of memory loss, dementia and Alzheimers… using old ballroom records, he compresses and elongates the sounds, creating haiunting imagery of tunes recalled and then lost again in a moment. An album that requires persisting with until you can get truly lost in its ambience.


7. Grouper: A I A Alien Observer/Dream Loss (Yellowelectric)













Liz Harris first proper album releases (although they seem to exist as a double album, I believe we’re to consider them seperate) since 2008 superb “Dragging a Dead Dear up a HIll” perhaps don’t quite hit the same heights, but are still a strong development of her sound. Harris combines ghostly atmospherics, with drone and whispered vocals to create something quite unique.


6. Kurt Vile: Smoke Ring for My Halo (Matador)

Gone are the bombastic titles of previous albums, “Constant Hitmaker” and “Childish Prodigy” and in comes a record of introspection and quiet confidence. Vile has grown as a songwriter, and seems to have found peace with his vaunted status as the next big thing. His most personal album so far and a strong step forward.


5. Julia Holter: Tragedy (Leaving Records)

Hugely ambitious first full length from Julia Holter, released back in August to not a huge amount of fanfare… A grand mixture of electronic, synthwave, indie and industrial, it isn’t always successful, but hits the mark much more often than not. There’s a lot of potential in this LP, and I’ll be looking forward to what JH does next.


4. Sandwell District: Feed Forward (Sandwell District)

Confusingly  a label, publication, album and artist, after a series of 12” finally comes the full release from Sandwell District.  On headphones does weird things to my heartbeat… especially after a night on the tiles. Another slice of minimal techno from the dark side, this music comes into your headphones and merges with your being… Music as symbiosis? I think Sandwell District have managed it.


3. King Creosote & Jon Hopkins: Diamond Mine (Domino)

Most pleasant, unexpected surprise of 2011. Scottish folksinger King Creosote (Kenny Anderson) and London based electronic producer (last seen working with Four Tet, Brian Eno and Tunng) Jon Hopkins create a beautiful and heartfelt love-letter to Anderson’s home town of Fife. Hopkins’ field recordings (taken from around Fife – in cafes and parking lots…) and gentle electronic waves lap up against Anderson’s folk songs. Delicate and moving… How did this not win the Mercury Prize? (Then again, given how pointless that prize is, they probably dodged a bullet.)


2. Tim Hecker: Ravedeath, 1972 (Kranky)

Hugely consistent electronic noise/drone artist Tim Hecker returns with an album recorded in a church in Faxaflói, near Rekjavik with the help of Ben Frost. Using hours worth of recordings from the church’s organ as the basis for the songs on the album, Hecker creates his sonic landscapes layers of drone and noise pulse in and out… recognisable sounds and instruments flicker in and out of the static. This is certainly the best album Hecker has released since Harmony in Ultraviolet back in 2006. Try as well the also excellent companion piece, Dropped Pianos.


1. Demdike Stare: Tryptych (Modern Love)

Originally released as three EPs in 2010, they all work possibly more effectively (along with added tracks) as a triple album. Miles Whittaker and Sean Canty (from the brilliant Finders Keepers label) have rifled through their vast record collections, marrying myriad styles  to construct this leviathan of sample-based electronica. Various labels have been thrown at this album, all  with spooky connotations…  occult, horror, witch house,… true, there is a strong element of the night about it… but in this writer’s opinion, something so cold couldn’t be as immersive and warm as this… the layers and layers of samples and work that have gone into each track brings something new with each visit. Techno, noise, minimal, ambient, dubstep… the genres referenced go on and on. Essential.


Other good albums and EPs:

Fucked Up: David Comes to Life

Sleep ∞ Over: Forever

Pete Swanson: Man with Potential

Blanck Mass: Blanck Mass

Deafheaven: Roads to Judah

Nate Young: Stay Asleep

Dro Carey: Journey with the Heavy

Motion Sickness of Time Travel: Luminaries & Synastry

Earth: Angels of Darkness, Demons of Light



Obviously not being a journalist (shown by the terrible writing and overuse of ellipsis) I had to fork out for these albums myself, so if some records are missing from this, it might not be that they weren’t any good, just that I couldn’t afford them. So if any kindly soul wants to send me other 2011 albums… for instance ones by Andy Stott, Leyland Kirby, Peaking Lights, Mike Vainio, Mark McGuire, Oneohtrix Point Never, Royal Headache, Colin Stetson, The Men and Patten… then I’ll be eternally grateful and promise never to bother the sender ever again (except to ask for employment).


Post - Andy