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. This week, we’re featuring songs by artists performing at the 10th annual Decibel Festival. Today’s selection comes from electronic and hip-hop producer Nosaj Thing. “Snap” comes from his 2013 album, Home, out now on Innovative Leisure.
Pretty much immediately after his introduction in 2006, Nosaj Thing (Jason Chung) has been a blip on everybody’s radar. It only took him two years after to start producing tracks for big name hip-hop acts like Kid Cudi. Since then, Nosaj Thing has walked a good line, balancing production for big names (Kendrick Lamar, Trinidad James) and smaller ones who might benefit from a boost (Busdriver, Chance the Rapper). But unbridled from being listed as only a production credit, Chung’s work comes alive. His two LPs shimmer and shine throughout with a continous, head-bobbing groove as well as an other-worldly sparkle that only he really supplies. His live sets are no exception to any of the above - stringing everything together into one continous, organic mass, Nosaj Thing is not a Decibel act you will want to miss.
“Snap” finds Chung’s production banging on the low. It’s a track that begs to explode for the duration of its short three and a half minutes, but Chung never lets it happen. Rather, the spacey sense of longing sways left and right of center until it finally drops out from under you. A steady bass waveform guides the track forward as syncopated, scattered hats and snares and tambourine fill the air with fairy dust. It’s a track that lands smack dab in the middle between dancing and contemplating, and you can tell that Chung wants it exactly that way. “Snap” is a textbook Nosaj Thing cut, and it’s a great appetizer before his Decibel set.
Nosaj Thing performs the Timetable Records Showcase this Sunday at The Crocodile during Decibel Festival. See him there and look for more info at his website and Facebook page. Here’s his recent video for “Eclipse/Blue”, another song from Home: