TIDAL Rising Artist of the Week: Baltra

TIDAL Rising Artist of the Week: Baltra

After many years honing his sound, Philadelphia native Baltra has firmly established himself as one of the most exciting rising DJs and producers in electronic music. His ascendency from local mainstay to global talent was exemplified by last year’s release of his debut LP, No Regrets, on vinyl. Not one to rest on his laurels, he then played a masterful Boiler Room debut just a few months later. After a string of notable remixes for the likes of Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Moon Boots, and Heathered Pearls, the ascendant producer is back with his first release in more than a year. Baltra’s Can’t Explain It EP (out this Friday, September 28) is a sonic crystallization of a whirlwind 13-month period, and showcases his artistry at its very best.

However, his path was not always so clearly defined. After half-heartedly playing violin in elementary school, Baltra found himself drawn to athletics and later graphic design. Those interests gave way to a more “practical” career path –– studying finance in New York. Graduating with a middling GPA due to his growing affinity for nightlife, Baltra focused on paying off his degree as quickly as possible. He secured a position at a reputable financial firm, which, while high paying, completely drained him in every sense. After a year and a half of “going into the office when it was dark, leaving when it was dark,” as he says, he unceremoniously lost his job just a few weeks shy of the last recession. Figuring that fate had decided for him, Baltra flung himself headfirst into his nascent DJ and production career.

 

After a few years on the New York club circuit, Baltra indulged his urge to produce and began making his first tracks. He sent these early works to a few YouTube channels that frequently posted music he listened to, and within a matter of months his tracks began racking up hundreds of thousands –– and eventually millions –– of views. Offers from booking agencies poured in, and he began touring clubs and festivals in Europe. Buoyed by this runaway online success, Baltra followed up with acclaimed releases on Craigie Knowes, Step, and his own 96 And Forever label. He began 2017 by pressing the first vinyl release of his 2016 LP No Regrets via Of Paradise, and followed through with EPs on Lost Palms and Tape Throb Records.

 

This rapid ascendance was capped off by a powerful Boiler Room debut in November 2017 –– since then, Baltra has been busy fielding remix requests and taking the occasional break when his hectic tour schedule allows. His upcoming Can’t Explain It EP on Of Paradise is a bold reminder of his emotive talent. The first release on Of Paradise’s new white label series, the EP is a kaleidoscopic journey through the heart of raw, hazy house music. It’s a bold and strikingly personal entry into Baltra’s budding discography, a release that encapsulates and underscores his ability to create music that moves your soul as well as your body.

 

Baltra’s Can’t Explain It EP is out this Friday, September 28th on Of ParadiseClick here to read our interview with Baltra, and check out an exclusive playlist of Baltra’s favorite tracks below:

 

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