Song of the Day: Tom Rowlands - Through Me

The Chemical Brothers / Tom Rowlands on the right

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJs think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Through Me” by Tom Rowlands from the 2013 single Through Me/Nothing But Pleasure on Phantasy Sound.

Tom Rowlands - Through Me (MP3)

Best known as a member of the groundbreaking big beat group The Chemical Brothers, Tom Rowlands (along with Ed Simons) is one of the first electronic dance musicians to bring that style of music out of clubs and into larger venues and audiences. Arguably the biggest live dance band on the planet before Daft Punk’s game-changing Alive 2006/2007 tour, the Chemical Brothers’ incorporation of rock and pop elements into massive, beat-centered tracks made them into a commercial and critical juggernaut during the ’90s, and although they aren’t quite as revered in the USA as they are in Europe, they continue to release critically acclaimed records and give stunning live performances to this day, last touring in 2011 behind that year’s terrific Swoon. Since the group aren’t planning on having any new music out this year, Rowlands decided to cut two solo tracks during their downtime. The A-side of his debut solo single, “Through Me” isn’t a far cry from the Chemical Brothers’ recent work. Relatively fast paced and featuring a bouncy, New Order-esque bassline, it makes up for Rowlands’ usual beat bombast by building and dropping at well-timed points in the six-minute track. Rowlands noted that his goal with these tracks was to keep his music into clubs, and “Through Me” acheives just that - a club driven track that features many of the Brothers’ strengths while keeping DJ-friendly, remix-geared sensibilities built into the track.

Tom Rowlands will begin work on a new Chemical Brothers album later this year, so keep an eye on their website and Facebook for any news on that album or any future solo work. Watch the duo play “Star Guitar” at Glastonbury 2007 below.

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