Back to roots: numbers and anecdotes of the most iconic, surprising and interesting dance songs in recent years! !
It’s really hot in these first August evenings, gasoline is running low in terms of energy and even in my time machine, but for a few months at any time we have been turning on the radio, whether this is a local or national broadcaster, evening or daily, to hammer nicely our eardrums go and go KUNGS with its super summer hit NEVER GOING HOME:
“Never Going Home” counts almost 30mln Spotify plays in less than 2 months and over 16mln TikTok views.
It’s at the top of all the European radio charts and it is depopulating in all the playlists of the music streaming apps; it is a very summery and fresh track with a simple, singable and whistling refrain, which also exploiting a typically party video shot at the Cercle des Nageurs in Marseille (made available to coincide with the release of the single on May 21 of the current year sees the artist and several people dancing and having fun by a swimming pool) is bringing to the French DJ KUNGS new limelight after the successes of the recent launch on the world clubbing scene.
Who is Kungs?
For those unfamiliar with him is the stage name of Valentin Brunel, a boy from 1996 who grew up with the musical influences of The Who and The Kooks, he started playing professionally as a disc jockey in 2014, making remixes of Jammin ‘di Bob Marley, Lana Del Rey’s West Coast, Serge Gainsbourg’s Bonnie & Clyde and Coldplay’s Clocks. His most important remix, however, was the one for the Axwell & Ingrosso song On My Way, while the project entitled To Describe You, made in collaboration with Mozambo, was included in the Hed Kandi: Tropical House compilation.
The blockbuster that brought Kungs to the fore, however, was produced in 2016 when he created another piece suitable for this column, in fact the hit from television commercials of a well-known telephone company and an automotive brand: THIS GIRL which is the remix wise of a 2009 soul track of the Australian group Cookin ‘on 3 Burners, a track with the consequent voluminous revenues that led him to win the Coca Cola Summer Festival in Italy:
During the pandemic, Kungs gave life together with his childhood friend Victor Soulisse to the ‘concept’ CLUB AZUR: every Saturday evening from 22.00 to 4.00 in the morning, the artist and his friend performed with a live streaming DJ set from the local “Le Sacré” in Paris, he has earned the esteem and the push of many influential friends such as compatriot MARTIN SOLVEIG or the Belgian LOST FREQUENCIES who has just remixed his NEVER GOING HOME:
For weeks I wondered who was inspired by Kungs because in Never Going Home I felt something already heard, I tried them all even hypothesized a work on the speed of the keyboards of the intro from the sample of RHYTHM IS A DANCER by SNAP in 1992, and the I must confess that it remains for me that someone before him was able to work starting from this historical trace; maybe the character I’m about to introduce to you.
Well yes! To the rescue of my Dolorean in reserve, the editorial colleague EDOARDO PASOTTO helped me by enlightening me with the feedback on MIND ENTERPRISES that with his IDOL will surely have inspired KUNGS:
This time we have little fuel but it is enough for us to arrive only at 2017 of IDOL by the very Italian ANDREA TIRONE, born in Turin in 1985 in art MIND ENTERPRISES: very passionate about ITALO DISCO, disputed in the sector beyond the border and so far little known at home.
MIND ENTERPRISES is like a spaceship that loaded all the musical production style of the 80s, drawing on the effervescent Italo-Synth that defined the era; Adjacent groovy and disco bass lines, hypnotic drum patterns and cosmic keyboard odyssey across continents and time to date.
Even through the video clips full of ironic humor, Tirone makes fun of the consumerism and lightness of the 80s, impersonating together with all his staff the movements and outfits of the promos that were on the air at the time. However it manages to cheer people up and to make dance what was considered a fashion and a frivolous musical style without a future until the end of the 90s!
Anyone who follows him on Instagram will have seen and heard the retro-style split-screen live streams from London and Gran Canaria (adopted home of Mind Enterprises and home to its fledgling BANDAMA label, named after the volcano located on the island).
Speaking of his label Andrea states: “Through Bandama, I am thrilled to be able to release my music and a selection of time-honoring records, straight from the glittering, hairy Italo era of the 1980s.” The first release on Bandama “Girls & Boys” on July 9 sees Mind Enterprises in fact delve further into the crazy world of italodisco in a modern way.
Andrea is one of those guys who emigrated early from our country to pursue his dream, one of those who did it with his feet on the ground starting from more in-depth studies (in his case in sound techniques as a sound engineer) and doing the ranks, Tirone took a risk and got involved by playing and sending his productions to the long list of labels he carefully selected up to BECAUSE MUSIC. He has never stopped feeding his collection of vintage synthesizers of which he says “Thery are like a palette of colors or an orchestra of artists; every single machine has a distinctive sound that is exclusively the sound of that machine”.
We are sure that his rise has only begun and by sifting through his spotify channel of interesting things you will listen to many, some neophytes will be intrigued or bewildered by the retro style of his paradoxically enjoyable sound, but many of us will be grateful to him for having given new life to a genre that had its meaning in an ITALY that in the 80s enjoyed a social and economic boom today seen with nostalgia and distance:
It is always nice to drive in the winding curves of time, stopping to refresh yourself with music and it is even more beautiful to be able to do it by sharing this passion with those who, fueled by the same curiosity, find similarities between traces of success that have experienced moments of fluctuating glory.
On vacation we will have more time to get involved in other itineraries, so I load the headphones and discs on the Dolorean console, I will wait for you at the next Back2Roots carousel ride to discover the grooves dug by the roots of Electronic Dance Music.
Can’t wait to be back on stage !!! ⚡️
“MUSIC IS THE ANSWER”