It’s Thursday so you know what that means! This Throwback Thursday we’re featuring SoCal DJ Mano and his first artist album Dreams. The album came out last November but still is a majestic piece of musical art that needs some light to it’s darkness. If you like electronic synths and emotional rollercoasters then make sure you check it out!
We often associate fame and joy to the life a producer who have had success in their career. It’s easy to forget about the pain that accompanies the person behind a DJ alias. Los Angeles based DJ/producer Mano gives us a glimpse of his emotional process with Dreams. His first artist album takes us through the rough and lonely journey he embarked not just as a musician but as an artist.
The 13 track album takes a step out of the norms created by genres and a step forward into what one can describe as art. Each track has its unique themes and styles that defy the limitations of house and electro, all ingeniously strung together by snares, hi-hats, and Mano’s touch.
Throughout the album, we can hear voices expressing sadness. With the track “Do You Remember,” a distorted voice asks, “Do you remember the time, time, time?” The echoes and wailing sets an eerie atmosphere. The next track “Air Filter” brings up the mood with its high keys and chimes. A voices offers a sense of hope by echoing the words, “Sing with me . . . we can make it through.”
Within all of these tracks, we can hear the use of different instruments and synths to power the main melody. In “1803,” we get that modern ambient style that is full of atmosphere, making you feel as if you’re dancing past your curfew. Then in “Please Stay,” we have this funky beat that is charged by electro synths and disco claps. “At the End” is a surprise and is a prowess to Mano’s talents as a musician. The track moves away from computer-generated sounds and goes a more traditional route with acoustic strings and percussions.
My favorite track is probably “Speed of Light.” This last track is where we get to see all of the different styles and technique that Mano used to form one beautiful song.
There is a journey that we take alongside Mano in Dreams. It’s an emotional journey with many sad undertones. The ride from “Intro” to “Mother” is a roller coaster of emotions but a profound insight of an artistic journey in pursuit of their creative dreams.
Some more information about Mano:
Mano began his journey behind the decks at an early age while still attending Santa Monica High School. His performances at local parties sowed the seeds of things to come as his popularity caught steam to propel him into his current success. DJ’s like Roger Sanchez, Steve Aoki, and Doc Martin has given this new talent support.
From adolescence house parties to the lavishing clubs of Hollywood, Mano has made a name for himself in LA. Alongside residencies at Katsuya and Viva HollyWood, this rising Valley star has signed five of his original compositions to be featured in Lindsay Lohan’s upcoming horror flick “The Shadow Within.”
Adding to the list of achievements, Mano has performed at WMC in Miami, Burning Man, and at BPM Festival in Guadalajara. Just like his success in LA, he has toured through South Brazil spreading his musical story for everyone to hear.
To answer the question proposed to us at “At the End”: Yes, the journey was worth it.