Featured photo: Billy Dutch.
Here at Conscious Electronic, we love all things bass — breakbeat, downtempo, left-field, experimental, dubstep in all its forms, you name it. As the underground bass movement has begun its full ascendancy in the US, we’ve been keeping a finger on the pulse of up-and-coming bass artists the country over. As such, CE’s Rising Bass Spotlight seeks to shine a light onto the rising producers who’re honing their craft, galvanizing their movements, and attuning eyes, ears, heads, and bodies into all things low end.
Colorado-based producer YOKO (real name: Emi Veliz) is regularly inspired by her Washington state upbringing and her new Mile High stomping grounds. But it’s not all outward inspiration that makes the rising bass music producer so noteworthy; albeit growing up in Tacoma and transplanting to Boulder certainly provides a constant source of natural beauty for making art. In her newest EP project, out now on Street Ritual, YOKO is inspired by the beautiful inner workings of her own imagination.
Raised on her grandfather’s music that ranged from 40s jazz to 60s-80s country, rock, and blues, she tells Voyage Denver: “My heart will always be with the oldies that are pressed on vinyl, but when I heard electronic and bass music it was like I was reborn.” This was around the time of attending her first dubstep show in November of 2016 while she was attending CU Boulder and majoring in Anthropology and Archaeology. She would then go on to be a self-taught self-starter as she watch YouTube videos to learn Ableton, which ultimately led her to release with some pretty notable underground bass music labels since.
Memoirs of an Abnormal Mind brings Veliz’s imagination to life with three tracks that bridge light, darkness, and texture into a fresh vision of underground bass. Infused with emotive vocal and orchestral elements and set atop layers of gritty synths and deep, wobbling basslines, this refreshing collection invites listeners to re-imagine their definitions of bass music and break free from the grips of modern genre culture.
From the title track with its string-led progressions and movie score sense of anticipation to the off-kilter stylings of “The Amygdala” which must represent her inner psyche, to “Lost In You” which closes out the EP, YOKO’s production talents are so glaring that we just had to feature Veliz as our next Rising Bass Spotlight artist. One need only listen to her latest three-track EP to see why.
With past releases on Lo Freq and The Gradient Perspective, and citing REZZ‘s 2017 Ultra set as a main source of inspiration to produce music, she’s certainly been in good company. “Watching that set lit a fire under me,” she says. “[I]t showed me that I, as a female, could be on that size of a stage one day, playing out my own original and groundbreaking music.”
Stream Memoirs of an Abnormal Mind below.
Yoko – Memoirs Of An Abnormal Mind EP
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