Puja Patel


New York, NY

  • Major Lazer, 'Free the Universe' (Mad Decent/Secretly Canadian)

    Diplo's transformations from underground producer to indie celeb to mainstream EDM pop star have been well-documented and well-orchestrated. The man born Wesley Pentz alternately taunts and charms the press as he treats social media like a new religion, Instagramming star-studded studio hangouts, his kid's fashion choices, and upside-down butts with equal fervor. No surprise, 20th Century Fox just announced the company has bought the rights to a movie about three kids trying to get into a Diplo concert, with Pentz serving as creative director and executive producer. Unquestionably, the guy is a master salesman.So much so, in fact, that you almost forget he still makes music. His Major Lazer project debuted in 2009 with the full-length Guns Don't Kill People... Lazers Do, a joint venture between Diplo and U.K.

  • Photo by Clouded Images Photography

    We Got That Ass! Inside the World of Jersey Club

    Ask Newark's Stacey White, a.k.a., DJ Sliink, about the fist-pumping, spiked-hair nightclubs where the cast members of MTV reality series Jersey Shore go to “beat up the beat” and he'll laugh out loud. "I’m born and raised New Jersey and I've never even heard about the clubs those drunk clowns go to," he says. While the young DJ just turned 22 years old, the party venues he's grown up on are YMCAs, Boys & Girls Clubs, and block parties — local, community-sponsored gatherings.

  • Cliff Martinez

    Score!: A Chat with 'Spring Breakers' and 'Drive' Soundtracker Cliff Martinez

    The outrageous trailer for director Harmony Korine's Spring Breakers plays out as a Girls Gone Wild episode turned street war, where drugs and territory are marked by city blocks and thugs with guns. Or, in this case, babes with guns. The story's four leading ladies — played by Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens, Rachel Korine, and Ashley Benson — wear neon bikinis throughout, toting Uzis and sucking face while goaded on by a drug dealing creep of a rapper named Alien, played by James Franco. Just for good measure, Gucci Mane makes a cameo. In a brilliant move, Korine brought on Skrillex and Cliff Martinez to score the film.

  • Swede Surrender / Photo via Getty

    Swedish House Mafia Tug Heartstrings at Final Manhattan Show

    Last summer, after five years of producing, touring, and festival-headlining as Swedish House Mafia, the group's three members — Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Steve Angello — announced their beloved trio was calling it quits. Their time together spawned six Dance-charting singles, two Grammys, and collaborations with both Coldplay and Usher. But most importantly, it opened a new lane for Euro-house producers to move from mega-clubs like Pacha to the more lucrative arena concert circuit. As DJs who might have once been considered "big room house guys," Swedish House Mafia are the best example of musicians who have transcended their own self-imposed aesthetics to go on to pioneer within the larger, vaguer, and more popular contemporary EDM circuit. It seems only right that they celebrate being on top (and in pop) with One Last Tour.No, really, that is the name of their tour.

  • Autre Ne Veut, 'Anxiety' (Mexican Summer / Software)

    Sorting through the feelings behind Autre Ne Veut's Anxiety is a daunting task. The Brooklyn-based producer only recently revealed his actual name (Arthur Ashin) to his fans — he's been studying for a masters degree in psychology, you see, and was fearful of his musical notoriety affecting any future non-musical endeavors. With this knowledge, his second full-length becomes a dissertation on its namesake, a presumably constant existential crisis that's both hurt and helped him: He insists his uneasiness about everyday things helped him write songs about anxiety with both comfort and ease.To describe this simply as "bedroom R&B" would be a disservice. Ashin’s voice isn't as understated and confident as those of Andrew and Daniel Aged from indie R&B duo Inc., his tenuous tenor less angelically emotive than Active Child's Pat Grossi.

  • Tiesto / Photo by Albert Chau/FilmMagic

    Where the Beats Have No Name: Tiesto's Rarefied Air

    Seven glitter-adorned women turned to stare blankly at me when I arrived at Glass, a warehouse that serves as a green room next door to New York City’s Marquee nightclub on Saturday night. Dressed in the kind of alien fantasy get-up that is almost exclusively reserved for sexy sci-fi role play and bottle-service go-go dancers — metallic leotards, studded geometric bras, coned and sequined shoulder pads, scaly stilettos — they, like the rest of us waiting, were anxious for Tiësto to arrive.Once it was revealed that, despite my boots and weather-appropriate jacket, I was a writer who also belonged in this backstage lounge, they resumed primping and chatting in their thick Eastern European accents.

  • Nadastrom / Photo by Michael Tullberg/Getty Image

    Various Artists, 'Moombahton Forever' (T&A)

    Stream Moombahton Forever right now! Who even thought moombahton would make it to 2013? The great dance-fusion craze that first appeared three years ago was widely dismissed as an Internet-fueled DJ novelty act, launched at the dawn of the SoundCloud Era by the oddball realization that if you slowed down Afrojack's manic "Moombah Remix," you could turn Dutch house music into reggaeton. It didn't help that the burgeoning genre's biggest producer, Munchi, seemed to prefer SoundCloud exclusively. And despite inventor Dave Nada's lovable origin story — he found himself playing a party for his cousin's reggaeton-loving friends, and was forced to improvise using house records — the style seemed destined for the same everything-sounds-the-same subgenre graveyard that claimed "bubbling" (a.k.a., sped up Dutch house) before it.

  • Taylor Swift / Photo by Getty Images

    Jingle Ball 2012 By the Numbers: Screaming Bieber Fans, the Wanted Creeped Out, and... Steven Seagal?

    Friday night once again brought Z100's annual Jingle Ball pop summit to NYC, making Madison Square Garden's sold-out arena a spectacle before the doors even opened. Thousands upon thousands of pre-teens piled onto each other outside of the venue eager to get a glipse of any of the chart-topping heartthrobs that were scheduled to perform inside. Bieber was the name that we heard screamed the most, of course. But the headliner shared the night with Taylor Swift, One Direction, the Wanted, Ne-Yo, Jason Mraz, B.o.B., Cher Lloyd, Ed Sheeran, and Olly Murs as well, making it a ticket that also served as a revue of radio pop circa 2012. As parents chaperoned their wild-eyed, heart-clenching, shrilly screaming kids, we feigned sympathy while embracing the pop glory right alongside 'em.

  • Mala

    Mala, 'Mala in Cuba' (Brownswood)

    Mala is a tourist, but a cautious one. Discussing the self-explanatory Mala in Cuba, his first major release in years, the dubstep savant and member of South London’s Digital Mystikz admitted that he was hesitant to take on the project at all, explaining he had little knowledge of Cuban music and was wary of half-assedly dabbling in such lively regional sounds.

  • The xx / Alexandra Waespi

    The xx, 'Coexist' (Young Turks)

    The xx had a lot to live up to after their gorgeously choreographed 2009 debut; but as quickly as Coexist launches into opening track "Angels," the trio fully delivers the sort of emotionally manipulative cauldron-stirring their fans adore. There's the breathy, surely-about-to-faint whispers of Romy Madley Croft, of course, gently coaxing longing out of lyrics meant for late-night love letters ("You move through the room / Like breathing was easy / If someone believed me / They would be as in love with you as I am"), carefully balanced between honest, gut-wrenching desire and stalker-like idolization, all backed by the familiar echoes of an idly plucked guitar and the barely audible thuds of a drum. The result may be quietly soothing, but it's not exactly easy listening. As a brand, the xx have thrived almost exclusively on peddling the pedestalled idea(l)s of love.

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