From left to right: Porky, Mikey Lion, Lee Reynolds, and Marbs.

Peter Speyer.

11 Desert Hearts Songs Sure to Bring the Funk

Jun 28, 2022

Lisa Kocay

5 min read

Techno, house, and love: the foundations that imprint and brand Desert Hearts is founded on. Desert Hearts—created by Mikey Lion, Lee Reynolds, Porkchop, Marbs, and Kristoff McKay—can be best described as embodying freedom of expression, community, and consciousness.

The label, party brigade, and boutique festival began in 2012 as a 200-person gathering in the Mojave desert. “It just organically grew into a festival,” Lion tells Forbes. “We never intended for it to be a festival or had intentions of creating something this big when we first started it. It kind of developed its own personality, following and [growing a] community around it, that we felt responsible to keep it going because it was just this…the most beautiful thing that we’ve ever been a part of.”

In addition, the festival proves to feature impressive lineups, boasting the likes of Tiefschwarz, DJ Harvey, Monkey Safari, Rodriguez Jr., DJ T, Claude VonStroke, Marc Houle, Olivier Giacomotto, Mark Henning, M.A.N.D.Y., and more over the years.

Desert Hearts Records launched in 2014 and features releases from acclaimed producers and burgeoning artists. Past releases on the imprint include Andreas Henneberg, Latmun, The Glitz, jozif, TÅCHES, Dance Spirit, Fritz Carlton, Kevin Anderson, RYBO, and, of course, the Desert Hearts crew. In addition, the eclectic party crew has traveled the world, bringing their City Hearts events to destinations such as Los Angeles, New York, Tulum, Mexico City, Miami, San Francisco, Houston, Chicago, Toronto, and Denver. It’s safe to say the brand’s techno, house, and love movement isn’t slowing down.

“Desert Hearts has given me my entire life,” Lion tells Forbes. “I think humans are tribalistic by nature and, for a lot of people, the tribe that they find is like their sports team or something that they feel a part of. I think that that’s my favorite part is that we’re all coming together with this common goal of creating love and spreading that positive energy and that goal of becoming the best versions of ourselves. It’s truly incredible to me.”

We picked 11 of our top songs by the Desert Hearts crew that are sure to get you grooving.

Andreas Henneberg and Mikey Lion - The Tortilla Rap

Mikey Lion brings the funk with this track. Boasting pulsing baselines and percolating beats, this song is dance floor ready. The comical lyrics provide added flare, truly delivering the sounds you need.

Andreas Henneberg and Mikey Lion - Surfliner

From thumping and effervescent bass to swirling synths, this track has what you need to get you dancing. This is truly a festival-approved track.

Machino and Lee Reynolds - Moon Matrix (Original Mix)

Lee Reynolds and Machino open by delivering the dark bass that you crave. Wonky and shimmering synths then lead listeners on a sonic journey. Don’t sleep on this out-of-this-world song.

Rinzen, Marbs, and Evan Casey - Ark

Enter a psychedelic dimension as the trio spins a transfixing song. The record came out on Desert Hearts Black, the darker side of the brand.

Mikey Lion - This is the Beat

Swirling synths, persistent bass, piano backdrop, and pulsating sounds will surely get you grooving. This record provides the beat that you crave.

Mikey Lion, Lubelski, and Jackson Englund - When I’m With You

Catchy lyrics, calming tones, shimmering synths, and groovy bass deliver a track meant for a sing-a-long. The record proves that Lion is a multifaceted creative: one that creates both dancefloor anthems and low-key heaters.

Lee Reynolds - Revolution Earth

Lee Reynolds brings swirling synths and stunning sounds, making this a headphones musical experience. Indeed, the song proves the artistic skills of the producer.

Marbs - Needed Time

Marbs plunges listeners into a dark underworld overflowing with pulsing bass and ominous synths. The track intertwines its dismal sound with bass designed for dancefloor domination.

Mitch Dodge and Porky - Chameleon

Get down and funky with this record that delivers bongos, snakey synths, and a build-up that leads into bass bops destined for the underground. Don’t miss out on grooving to this song.

Machino and Lee Reynolds - Puma Punku (Original Mix)

Transcend into a darker universe with Lee Reynolds. This track is designed to transport you to a dark and sweaty warehouse.

Mikey Lion - I Like to Go Out

Soundtrack your pregame to this funk-filled song. From chimes to catchy lyrics and snaring synths, this song is set to get you into the party mood.

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