The next musical offering from No.19 comes in the form of the single Robot Heart, a record almost destined to be a classic before its creation. The title comes from the infamous desert parties of the same name, that Robot Heart that burners chase through the desert on bikes deep into the Playa to partake in one of the world’s most enigmatic events. Its been praised by the likes of Rolling Stone magazine as one of the best parties on earth and continues to top the list for DJs lucky enough to play atop the legendary mobile soundsystem.
When Art Department´s Jonny White received the call from Robot Heart’s Gio (George G. Mueller) and Jason Swamy to write the first ever song for Robot Heart, it was not something he took lightly. In Jonny¨s own words, “Robot Heart events at Burning Man are quite simply put, the best parties on the planet.” Jonny enlisted his band partner Kenny Glasgow and sometimes DJ partner Shaun Reeves who were with him last year at Burning Man and who all experienced the Playa and Robot Heart for the very first time together to collaborate on the record. This was no small task, writing a record that would somehow have to translate the uncontainable energy that Robot Heart brings to the Playa each night and into the following afternoon at Burning Man.
“This truly is the stuff legends are made of. The guys have come up with something so amazing and powerful and I was honored to be asked to write the theme to such a beautiful concept that has touched so many including all of us. Having experienced playing on the bus 3 times now I had a good idea of what the song needed to sound like, although bringing that unbelievable atmosphere to a record seemed it might be impossible. Fortunately, having been touched so deeply by our experience there we didn´t have much trouble putting ourselves in the right place to bring that vibe to the record. I think it really captures the essence of the party, the playa and the people that make it what it is¨ – Jonny White
Listen to Robot Heart here:
When the record was finished Jonny immediately turned to Damian Lazarus who first asked Art Department to play with him on the bus 2 years ago to write the vocal. Jonny recounts the experiece, “The record needed a vocal… it was something that only someone who had been there and shared the same experience at Robot Heart would be capable of writing. While finishing the mix in LA I approached Damian to write and record the vocals for the song. He had a similar reaction to when we were asked to produce the song… honored and aware of the daunting task: that it would be a meaningful song for so many and had to live up to the actual party. He asked for a moment alone with a pen and some paper and came up with something absolutely perfect, without even hearing the record! I was shocked. We recorded one take and that was it.”
Musically “Robot Heart” is an instant underground anthem, deep, pulsing electronic music that defies tags such as “house” or “techno.” Lazarus’ intense and poignant vocals cut a channel through the rich and haunting production and the sound transports the listener straight to the heart of the flame lit desert floor. The original version is accompanied by an outstanding remix from BLUD who delivers a stripped back, dub mix that is perfectly balanced and deeply hypnotic.
Robot Heart fathers George G. Mueller (Gio) & Jason Swamy had this to say about the Robot Heart single: “Going into our fifth year at Burning man focused on the goal of bringing the best mobile sound system and electronic house music to the playa, Robot Heart has now become known to throw some legendary parties. After 5 years on the Playa, and now being known worldwide for what have become legendary events, the talk about Robot Heart’s magical sunrises sessions at Burning Man elevated to a new level as Art Department (in collaboration with Shaun Reeves, BLUD and Damian Lazarus) composed and debuted the first ever ode to Robot Heart. Jonny White & Kenny Glasgow are two of our favorite artists who are widely recognized for being pioneers and pushing boundaries with electronic music. They´re extremely talented DJs and music producers whose musical style and personality personifies that of the Robot Heart Bot (bus), so when the idea of having one of the many talented artists who have graced the decks of the Bot to write the Robot Heart anthem, asking Art Department to bring the spirit of Robot Heart to life was the obviously choice. When Robot Heart was debuted on the Bot at Burning Man this year it was a perfect alignment of a virtuoso on a Stradivarius, a match made in playa heaven.”
Watch the Burning Man video that captures it all:
No.19 Music have forged a position for themselves as one of the leading record around and with this single seeing Art Department coming home and a celebration of one of the best parties on earth, they are certain to draw even more attention to their unique take on things.
Art Department “Robot Heart” (No19029)
1. Robot Heart
2. Robot Heart (BLUD’s Deep Playa Beats mix)
Available now on vinyl at Juno.co.uk & Beatport.com.
Explore the No.19 Music catalog here: soundcloud.com/no19music
Art Department Tour Dates
November 21 Chicago, IL @ Spybar
November 23 Toronto, Canada @ RBMA Radio presents Social Experiment with Lee Foss, Tone of Arc, Nitin at Moskito
November 24 Montreal, Canada @ La Mouche
November 28 London, Canada @ Cobra London
December 2 Turin, Italy @ Supermarket
December 15 Manchester, UK @ Crosstown Rebels presents Rebel Rave at The Warehouse Project
December 20 Playa Del Carmen, Mexico @ Chanolandia
December 27 Juarez, Mexico @ 10 Years Of Pastilla Digital at The Hardpop
December 31 Anaheim, CA @ The Anaheim Convention Center
January 4 Playa Del Carmen, Mexico @ No.19 Music Showcase at The BPM Festival
About No.19 Music
Toronto’s No.19 Music was founded in 2008 by DJ/producer Jonny White as an outlet for his own recordings and those of a close-knit group of like-minded native artists. Since then, working with partners Nitin and Teeloo, No.19 Music has become an internationally recognized beacon for quality underground electronic music, while Jonny White has also established himself on the world stage as Art Department, along with Kenny Glasgow. Their roster of artists have all been widely touted on the global dance music scene and includes: Clock Work, DJ Sneak, Gadi Mizrahi, Jimmy Edgar, Lee Foss, Miguel Puente, No Regular Play, Soul Clap, Tanner Ross, and James Teej, all in addition to Art Department, Nitin, and Teeloo’s own work.