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Decibel Festival Turns Up the BPMS

Unlike the majority of music festivals across the nation, Seattle based Decibel Festival brings a much needed breeze on a hot summer day. Instead of featuring the biggest names money can buy, the west coast event company boasts a gathering filled with live performances backed with top of the line sound while integrating the most technological setups around. As the DJ/producer market becomes saturated with those who merely press play, it is the artists featured at Decibel that push the limit and stay outside the realm of typical. Boasting a sound in the more deeper side of the things, VIBE has compiled a list of artists you should know. Although these DJs may not be on TRL’s countdown, they are the epitome of what true musical visionaries are.

DJ/producer Manik has hit the EDM scene like a perfect storm. Only 26 years old, with two albums under his belt, the kid from Queens Boulevard has taken his soulful sound across the globe. DJ Mag declared his tunes, "some of the best house we’ve heard in years," and they weren't lying. Under close watch of producer royalties Josh Wink and Steve Bug, this DJ will undoubtedly keep climbing higher up the mountain of success. Considered to be one of the brightest stars in EDM’s galaxy, his set is not to be missed.

Carl Craig
Carl Craig is as relevant to music history as much as Thomas Jefferson is to America's independence. This dance floor destroyer is one of the founding fathers of modern day house and it all started in Detroit. Celebrating 20 years with his Planet - E imprint, Craig embarks on a big tour as he showcases his new live setup. Under of the name of 69 and the integration of masks and mystery, this is the first time Craig will be touring under his new alias. This guy has been captivating crowds for two decades and now he is pushing a new live setup... nuff said.

Bass fueled insanity. Those are a few words that barely scratch the surface when describing South African producer Marty Party. Currently residing in Brooklyn and basking in the dubstep explosion that has taken the US by storm, Marty Party throws down like no other. Integrating the use of a live setup that only musically gifted tech heads could even comprehend, MP fills rooms with devastating wobbles as he intoxicates the crowd. Unlike most dubsteppers, Marty Party’s sets are guaranteed to be different every time as he successfully integrates other genres effortlessly and unscripted.

The definition of an overnight success story should be next to the name Emancipator. Touring with the likes of Bassnectar, STS9, and Pretty Lights, this production guru has some serious skill. Embellishing an ambient and unique sound, the Oregon native has even had one of his tracks featured at the Beijing Olympics. That feat alone sits him alongside names like Tiesto and The Chemical Brothers for being chosen as a part of the world’s soundtrack. His live setup is far beyond the realm of simple and will open EDM junkies to a new avenue of awesome.

After an 8 year hiatus, the British brother production duo dubbed Orbital has returned. After putting their music partnership on hold in 04’, brothers Phil and Paul Hartnoll return energized and ambitious. Following their freshest album release, the two plan to amaze crowds with their amazing live setup consisting of crazy sound manipulation. Comparable to the likes of The Chemical Brothers, their set is bound to be something out of this world and not something seen at a club any given night. They sell out stadiums...just saying.

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New Music: Billi Phene Drops 'Love Crimes' Off Of Forthcoming EP

Billi Phene started as a background singer for Rihanna, but since then, she has emerged as a solo entity who is read to take the world by storm on her own accord.

The Bronx-born singer and songwriter recently released her first single off of her forthcoming EP, which is expected to drop in the summer. "Birthed from the ashes of an explosive breakup, 'Love Crimes' is an unapologetic declaration," says a press release for the song, which became available on streaming services Friday, Jan. 11. "Envisioned as an interrogation room confession, it tells the story of emotional self sacrifice."

The artist, who cites her influences as David Bowie, Bjork, Beyonce and Lady Gaga as some of her influences, says that she's always trying to push the envelope. Her lyrics range from mysterious to dangerous to playing with the boundaries of sex.

“I’m always down for edgier soundscapes," she continues. "It’s the story of being nonconformist, and not fitting into any pigeon hole that seems to inform my lyrics and musical choices. It comes from my truest self. Maybe my music can encourage others to do the be different, to be honest with themselves for once.”

Listen to "Love Crimes" below.

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Footage Reveals That R. Kelly Was Aware Of Aaliyah's Age, Contrary To Lawyer's Statement

An old video has resurfaced which showcases that R. Kelly was aware of Aaliyah's age when they married in 1994. The documentary-style interview demonstrates the R&B singer in the studio with a then 14-year-old Aaliyah while they worked on her debut album Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number, Okayplayer reports.

“Right now I’m producing a very talented young lady, she’s 14. Aaliyah, she’s real street,” he said, continuing to give her directions on how she should hit her notes on the track’s production.

Amid the blatant evidence, Kelly’s lawyer Steven Greenberg recently said that the 52-year-old singer did not know Aaliyah's real age at the time of their marriage. Greenberg also said that Aaliyah allegedly lied about her age in order to get married.

“..My understanding is that she did not claim to be 15. And in order to get married she had to lie about her age,” Greenberg said on Good Morning America. However, he confirmed the two were married. In 1994, VIBE published Kelly and Aaliyah’s marriage certificate in a cover story documenting their union. An excerpt from journalist Danyel Smith reads:

"Then there’s the story that says Aaliyah is supposedly 19, and none of this is as scandalous as folks would like to make it. There is, after all, an Illinois marriage license dated August 31, for Robert S. Kelly and Aaliyah D. Haughton, which lists their respective ages as 27 and 18,” Smith writes. “(Of course, the marriage would be null and void if the ages are not legit.) The only problem is, while promoting her million-selling Jive Records debut, Age Ain’t Nothin’ but a Number, Aaliyah has been evasive about stating her age. Her official bio says 15, and a record company publicist has said, “We stand behind the bio."

Now, another detail has surfaced in relation to the physical abuse Aaliyah allegedly endured at the hands of Kelly while they were married. Journalist Jim DeRogatis, who's extensively covered Kelly's plight with sexual and physical abuse of women, told The New York Times that he obtained court documents stating physical abuse, BET reports.

“The annulment of the Aaliyah marriage and Aaliyah’s legal claim against him had been sealed in Detroit … they were sealed by the court but those documents were provided to me," he said. “It’s a harrowing document, a non-disclosure agreement on both her part and Kelly’s, vowing not to pursue further legal claims for physical abuse. So it wasn’t just an underage sexual relationship, he hit her, allegedly, according to that court document."

R. Kelly is reportedly under criminal investigation by the state of Georgia since Lifetime aired its docu-series Surviving R.Kelly.  

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Premiere: Jordan Hollywood Goes To War In Visuals For "Explosion"

A war-torn forest reminiscent of 1969’s Vietnam War serves as the perfect backdrop for Jordan Hollywood’s video for “Explosion.” Through a montage of wild greenery, Jordan is seen dodging a rainstorm of fiery explosives. Amid the dangerous scenes, his lyrics tell a variety of sex-induced tales paired with braggadocious bars used to remind his rap contemporaries of his space in the game.

The 25-year-old newcomer, who is signed to Quality Control (Migos, City Girls, Lil Baby, Lil Yachty), centers on having his creative visual artistry merge with his lyrical prowess. For “Explosion,” he wanted to revert back to his old artistic roots.

“I’ve been using the same director, Christian Breslauer, since I was 17,” he told VIBE via email. “He did these war videos back then on a shi**y camera that still looked good. Fast forward to now, we were sitting at his house and I was like, 'Yo, remember those war videos you made back then? Let’s do something like that for “EXPLOSION.'”

The Broward County native credits his label for granting him artistic control to express himself how he deems necessary. He named his latest project FINALLY!  as an ode to feeling like he has creative control, and the agency to pursue his craft.

"I’m signed to the best label in the world, I have full creative control, and I have a platform now," he told Billboard. "Whatever vision I have, I can do it. That’s the best feeling. When I say 'finally,' that’s what I mean. To be an artist, not a lot of artists feel the way I feel. They feel controlled or manipulated by people telling them what to do all the time. With me, I feel like I’m in the perfect space and it’s an unbelievable feeling."

Watch the video for "EXPLOSION" below.

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