Mize Walks the Line Between Bass and Downtempo, His Best Balancing Act With New EP
Article by: Ryan Hood
I remember this moment like it was yesterday. Day 1 of Wakaan Festival in 2019, Liquid Stranger was in the midst of a beautiful downtempo set and then he dropped this news on the crowd: the announcement of a new downtempo label, Sskwaan.
From that moment, I was captivated by the idea, as the popularity of downtempo was rising in the bass community. At that moment, I knew Sskwaan and its artists would carve their own place in the scene, pushing the boundaries of bass music itself.
This new Mize EP represents just that.
The Alabama-based producer has been on an absolute tear since the start of 2019, and this EP feels like the culmination of his dedication to his sound. Reminiscent of his classic Imagery EP, Mize utilizes beautiful, organic sounds in his leads and bridges, and deep, brooding basses in the drops. This duality is present throughout his discography, and is more apparent in this outstanding EP.
Mize premiered these tracks in his mixtapes over the years, distinctively different from the other music he put out at that time. Rather than utilizing massive percussive beats for his intros and bridges, Balancing Act opts for organic sounds at the beginning of each track and a distinct lack of percussion outside of the drops. These organic sounds give the EP a very natural feeling, as if each song is emerging from a dense forest, while Mize craftily adds layers of synths and FX as the songs progress.
“Balance” might be my favorite Mize tune to date. It is by far the most up-tempo track on this EP, yet still maintains the melodic and organic feel. It begins by introducing an incredibly catchy topline melody, giving way to a bass synth that utilizes that same melody. The topline is then reintroduced, and combines with the bass to give the track incredible depth. “Crystalsong” utilizes a similar structure, adding in a subtle piano track and relying more heavily on its topline to drive the melody. “Slow Approach” is the perfect balance between entrancing toplines and punishing bass; it utilizes both to perfectly represent the duality of the EP.
“Clouded Judgement” is the most reminiscent of Imagery. It revolves around a similar song structure, using very minimalistic bridges and leads and a deep, punishing bassline being the dominant synth in the drop. While many of the tracks on this EP use both a topline and bassline in their melodies, “Clouded Judgement” relies almost solely on its bassline. “Infinite Expansion” is very similar in its reliance on its bassline as the melody, and also features a flute as its topline.
“I Need Your Heartbeat” is one of my most anticipated Mize releases. This song features an incredible drum break and two concurrent topline melodies before the bass becomes more dominant in the second part of the song. This song feels like the culmination of a long journey and has an incredible feeling of nostalgia.
Mize has appeared on both Sskwaan and Wakaan recently, releasing “Satori” with Super Future earlier this year. His most recent release “Refraction” on Wakaan is an up-tempo festival smasher, which followed up Thought Process, his debut EP on Wakaan which came out at the end of 2020. Mize is my absolute favorite up-and-coming producer, and I cannot wait to catch him at a festival this year and on tour with Champagne Drip and Peekaboo.
Keep up with the latest from Mize using the links below, and follow along with Moon Lvnding’s New Music Friday Heat and Moon Tvnes From Outer Space playlists on Spotify for all of this week’s freshest bangers!
CONNECT with Mize:
LISTEN to Mize: