Yes In My Backyard is a semiweekly column showcasing new and emerging MP3s from local talent.
It’s been generally impossible to keep up with the ever-changing moods of tireless, futurist dance trio These Are Powers. In roughly six releases over four years, they’ve dabbled in don’t-call-us-No-Wave art crunch, rap-fueled dub-punk, and fluttery electro-scuzz, all leading up to February’s stellar Candyman EP (Rving Intl.), which exists somewhere between Southern bounce, British dubstep, and Bedford Ave. noise. But the one-off, straight-to-the-Internet single “Anything Above Nothing” proudly announces TAP’s latest and most daring incarnation to date: full-blown diva house!
OK, sure, it’s not exactly Crystal Waters, but underneath their woofer-wrecking bass tones and caustic blasts of robo-noize is hands down the group’s clubbiest, boomingist, most anthemic moment to date. Fueled on equal parts house, hip-hop, and Portuguese kuduro, it’s a gorgeous blending of the loud and trance-y, the hypnotic and disorienting, with vocalist Anna Barie adding a silky melody that could’ve been peeled right off a Madonna-circa-1983 club banger. Drummer Bill Salas says this is just a taste of what’s to come — you’ve been warned.
These Are Powers on “Anything Above Nothing”:
What is “Anything Above Nothing” about?
Anna Barie: It’s about convincing yourself to live in the moment and be happy for what you have, like a dance mantra to tell you tomorrow is another day. The title comes from a conversation I had with my friend Lori about letting go of a relationship that was over.
Bill Salas, drummer and programmer: We recorded the bass and vocals at DNA Studios in the East Village, and the rest ourselves. I went to school for a bit for producing and engineering, and have a lot of experience home-recording. We are handling a lot of the production and editing ourselves.
What inspired it musically?
Salas: Pop, kuduro, and house… If you listen closely you’ll hear them all!
This sounds even more house/club-influenced than the Candyman EP. Is this a taste of what’s to come?
Salas: Yup. This next batch of tracks is going to hit so hard.
What’s your favorite beat of 2010?
Salas: Damn good question. We’ll keep this to hip-hop and r&b or else I’ll be here all day. The Diplomats, “Salute”; Ciara and Ludacris, “Ride”; Lloyd Banks and Juelz Santana, “Beamer, Benz or Bentley”; and Gucci Mane and Rick Ross, “All About the Money.”
This song sounds so thick and fully realized — why did you decide to drop it as a stand-alone MP3?
Salas: To get it out there quickly and to let people know where we are coming from with this new sound. There’s something really gratifying about not having to wait five to eight months before your track is released.
What’s the most memorable show you’ve ever played in New York?
Barie: We’ve had a lot of amazing shows in New York at Secret Project Robot Gallery, Todd P shows, and last summer under the High Line. Each one is an event. We’ve had light shows, power failures, kiddie-pool fountains, vogueing art fags, impotent bubble machines, Ryan Sawyer guesting on bongos with a horn section, and tons of confetti, balloons, and candy. Each time is a party.
What’s your favorite place to eat in Brooklyn?
Barie: I really like going to the Grand Army Plaza or Williamsburg farmers’ markets on Saturdays. I’ll have a yogurt and maybe a donut while I shop, then make breakfast with fresh greens, eggs, and fruit.
These Are Powers play the Cameo Gallery on July 12 with Follower and Asa Ransom.