TT The Artist

Introducing The Next Best Female Rapper TT The Artist

Nicki Minaj, Azealia Banks, Dej Loaf, Angel Haze– we’re in a golden age of female rappers far from the days where Missy Elliot or Lil’ Kim were the only ones you could find kicking around in the mainstream. Apart from the fact their female, they are also testing the boundaries of Hip-Hop. Nicki Minaj has done personas, drama and EDM while Banks released an album last year that borrowed from deep-house, latin music and icy RnB.

TT The Artist is testing those same kind of boundaries on her EP Art Royalty which combines Baltimore Club and EDM with traditional Hip-Hop and RnB flavours. The Baltimore rapper has been impressing hip-hop aficionados along with the electronica world including Brenmar and the LuckyMe label. She’s been churning out music at a rapid pace for the better part of two years but Art Royalty feels like her most realised project yet.

The EP goes from cocky aggression (Thug It Out) to bubblegum beats (Giddy Up). You can imagine her impressing fans of Iggy Azalea just as much as impressing fans of electronica and new age hip-hop. The EP is charismatic, fast-paced and perfectly produced by the likes of Thunderbird Jukebox and Mighty Mark. She’s already featured on a Diplo track and seems like a legitimate hope to bring the Baltimore club sound to commercial radio. Best of all she’s worked with our very own Swick and Lewis Cancut.

Listen: TT The Artist – Art Royalty

Her Boiler Room set will instantly confirm for you just how good she really is:

TinasheReview

REVIEW + PICS: Tinashe At Metro Theatre, Sydney | Aquarius Tour

TinasheReview

Australia doesn’t seem like the most likely place for a DIY RnB singer to make a splash but it seems US singer Tinashe has struck a chord here. 2 On, the first single from her debut album Aquarius is burning up radio here now almost a full year after its initial release and last night she played to a sold out Metro Theatre. It’s one thing to be sold out but it’s another thing to induce hysteria when you enter the stage. As she strutted on behind a puff of smoke the crowd erupted as a sea of iPhones revealed themselves as if Beyonce had suddenly appeared in a busy Westfield.

Tinashe is an interesting case. She’s been compared to Aaliyah, Ashanti and Janet Jackson yet she differs to them. While Aquarius was undoubtedly an RnB album she’s worked with everybody from Calvin Harris to Ryan Hemsworth and Dev Hynes proving just how expansive the genre in which she operates has become. On stage she has the same slinky stage presence as FKA twigs with the hard hitting dance moves of Ciara and the vocal prowess of Jessie Ware. With just a drum to the side of the stage and four back-up dances, the petite Tinashe fills the stage effortlessly.

She began with Vulnerable from her mixtape Black Water immediately hitting with her caramel vocals and sultry walk. “Don’t stop looking at me”, she sings as her voice hits full flight, slicing the air and creating gasps in the process. Her dance moves are immediately impressive but they’re never feel over-rehearsed. There’s a certain rawness to Tinashe that makes her far more endearing. Even when the back-up dancers joined her it always felt as if they were five friends improvising rather than counting every single beat.

The Dev Hynes-produced Bet was the first song of the set where we really got to hear her vocals in full force. Bet is extraordinarily atmospheric thanks to Hynes’ expert layering and it complements the bursts of smoke covering Tinashe. All of the songs from her debut album are binded by a sense that there’s a wave washing over and this was the first time that we really get to feel that texture.

The set bounced between mixtape and album tracks and even threw in a few popular RnB tracks to hype a crowd which was already at fever point. The hard hitting Watch Me Work was complemented beautifully by the tender How Many Times. She moves between the energetic and the slow effortlessly never sucking the energy out of the crowd, even in the dimmest moments of the night. A portion of Kid Ink’s Body Language was served while Tinashe composed herself for her Calvin Harris-feature, Dollar Signs. A thumping bass-line and glassy percussion sent the crowd wild while Tinashe fist-pumped like she was owning the stage at Tomorrowland. It’s far from her best song but live it was a chance to let loose some pent up energy.

She followed that by sitting on a stool to give us the only ballad of the night, Bated Breath. It was pretty special to see her sitting still and just showing off her crystalline voice. She belted it out with reckless abandon as she slowly stood on the stool and looked over the crowd. No doubt her view was awash with the glow of smartphones. It seemed everything she did was worthy as being captured as not one punter kept their phones away for the entirety of the set. Instead of letting it annoy her Tinashe accepted it, at one point grabbing a phone from someone and filming herself. She’s 22 and she gets that this is what people do now. For the first time it felt like the mass of smartphones didn’t take away from the show. Instead it felt like a sign of appreciation.

As we got to the final moments of the set Tinashe churned out hit after hit. The drummer thrashed away at Turn Down For What while she and her dancers went hard to a recording of Rae Sremmund’s No Type. The biggest revelation of the night was just how perfect All Hands On Deck. The track is set to be the third single from Aquarius and last night it revealed itself as the most effortlessly delectable of the set.

Pretend and 2 On were always going to be the champions of the night and they were. A beefed-up Pretend saw Tinashe offer one of the more tender moments of the night with the dim-lit vibe of the song suiting the smokey atmosphere. As she directed the crowd to put two fingers in the air, the screams could’ve been heard from far down George St. Despite the tracks minimalistic instrumental, the melody is just so smooth with enough pop to direct the crowd to get down low. Tinashe spent the later part of the song hanging over the crowd lapping up all the love that was there for her in abundance.

As she left the stage she smiled and offered some words of advice about following your dreams. She’s a self-made star in every sense and she seemed to be taken aback by her transformation from making mixtapes in her bedroom to playing to a sold out room on the other side of the world.

Tinashe at The Metro Theatre: Gallery 
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PURPLE

Hear Berlin Producer PURPLE’s Haunting, Dense ‘Extinction’

American label WeDidIt is probably known to most as the home of Shlohmo but RL Grime‘s debut album was released through it last year (you know, the guy who’s sold out nearly all of his Groovin The Moo sideshows here in Australia?), and they’re kind of killing it. The latest release from WeDidIt is this heavy, brooding track, Extinction, by Berlin producer PURPLE. He told The Fader that the song “deals with feelings of loss and distance” and much like Shlohmo’s latest offerings it’s characterised by a dense, dark atmosphere erring to the side of RnB. It’s a beautiful, affecting track; a good precursor to his debut album, Silence and Remorse, out in April. You can catch PURPLE at Berlin Festival this May. More info here.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/purplepurplepurple/01-extinction[/soundcloud]

Also, he remixed t.A.t.U’s Not Gonna Get Us which deserves a mention:

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/purplepurplepurple/tatu-not-gonna-get-us-purple[/soundcloud]

 

rbmaxdreems

PREMIERE: DREEMS Red Bull Academy Mix

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The Red Bull Academy rolled into Sydney at the beginning of this month and brought with it a week of exclusive DJ sets, production workshops and studio downtime. The likes of Flight Facilities, Touch Sensitive, Charles Murdoch and Mark Pritchard all took part in the partying, workshopping and creating that shapes the Red Bull Academy.

Today, we’re stoked to premiere a mix from producer DREEMS who’s put together a mind-boggling mix of French music that has, according to his Facebook, “affected, afflicted and affirmed” him as an artist. The set was streamed live to FBi from the Red Bull Music Academy at Studios 301 at the beginning of February and now you can relive it here. Check out the mix below:

Red Bull Music Academy at Studios 301: Gallery 

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FI_17Feb

First Impressions: Drake, Kendrick Lamar, Hot Chip & More

FI_17Feb

First Impressions is an interns roundtable review of songs on their first (or second) listen. Each week we review six new songs from the past week, each giving them a score out of five and awarding our pick of the week. Today we pick apart tracks by Hot Chip, Florence + The Machine, Kendrick Lamar + more.

We’ve decided to take the chance in today’s First Impressions to test whether a picture really does speak a thousand words. One reviewer is doing so through text while the other has chosen images to try and best represent the songs. Can things really be reviewed with zero words? Allow six .gifs below to answer that.

Hot Chip- Huarache Lights

Sam: I definitely was hoping that Hot Chip would go in the same sort of direction as Flutes on their next album and it seems like they are. As good as they are at pop songs, sometimes I prefer when they head straight for the dancefloor and ditch the vocal hooks. Huarache Lights sits in between those two. It still has the more organic sounding instrumentation but then sometimes like the sassy vocal sample pulls it right towards the dancefloor.

The tempo and the backbeat of the track is so mundane yet their subtle layering somehow keeps you hooked for the whole five minutes plus. At times I wish that they’d ditch the vocal and just keep with the vocal manipulation for something entirely different but that would probably ostracise a whole audience, so best they keep with what they’re known for. I feel like the bizarre, woozy soundscape of the track gives them so much room to do something a little more spectacular with the vocal though. It’s a great track but Hot Chip do great so effortlessly and maybe that’s the problem. 3.5

Bianca: hotchipgif 3

Dan Deacon- Learning To Relax

Sam: I’ve always really struggled to commit myself to Dan Deacon because in 2009 he released like three records and that’s a lot to handle. It’s kind of like never hearing The Smiths or Morrissey and then deciding you’re going to go through his whole back-catalogue with no knowledge of who is and then just deciding that it probably is more work than you’re prepared for.

Anyway that was obviously pure laziness because Learning To Relax is great. I’m always intrigued when elements of electronica combine with prog-rock. MGMT did it to a poppier spectrum with their debut and even Tame Impala did it to some extent on Londerism. Even though I can’t understand one word Deacon says, I’m thoroughly intrigued for the whole thing. That schizophrenic synth is anxious and at the same time mesmerizing while the vocal manipulation washes over you in a psychedelic haze. Maybe this is what I wanted from the Hot Chip song? Is it a coincidence that YouTube is recommending I listen to Ready For The Floor? Anyway, the final minute of this song is a hot mess and it’s utterly exhilarating. 4

Bianca: tumblr_l5iagg1MF51qa4w2fo1_400  4

Florence + The Machine- What Kind Of Man

Sam: The first time I listened to Florence’s second record Ceremonials I was impressed. It was grandiose and sophisticated and all the while had this reckless ambition but as I kept listening it revealed itself to be over-produced and too big. I had no thoughts on how she was going to tackle this third album but I’m really happy with the direction of What Kind Of Man. We haven’t heard her this aggressive since Girl With One Eye from her debut Lungs but we’ve never even heard her like this before.

The gentle beginning is beautiful but it’s the way she sings when the brass howls and the drums thrash that’s really impressive. Her accent is like nothing we’ve ever heard before, like an angsty PJ Harvey tightening the jaw. She’s lost the crystalline image of Ceremonials and roughed up to a part-primal state. She could’ve easily called up Calvin Harris and sold millions of copies but the fact she’s leading with this single shows she cares way more about her legacy than the amount of times she’s shazamed. I think this year she’ll make her upgrade to festival headliner and that will be an important talking point this year. Florence is a woman with the personality and ambition to tear up the main stage of any festival far better than a weary AC/DC or U2 can. 4

 Bianca: i-am-a-strong-woman-o3.75

Kendrick Lamar- The Blacker The Berry

Sam: It’s obvious from the first few seconds of this song that it’s way better than i. Kendrick’s last album was so successful because it was so raw and passionate and had something to say. i felt a bit Lamar-lite which wasn’t the comeback track he needed (or maybe he did. He won two Grammys), this is the track he needed. He sounds angry and it actually feels like he has something to say. “I’m the biggest hypocrite of 2015”, is a pretty powerful line to open with particular when it’s over a dark, raw instrumental that sounds like something Nas would’ve happily put on Illmatic.

The reggae samples are just as affective as they were on Kanye West’s I’m In It, giving some kind of melody to grab on to in an otherwise pretty instrumentally linear track. I wish I could give some greater insights into his comments on race in this but I really don’t feel I could do it any justice. His line are so pertinent and powerful that they need no elaboration. “I mean, it’s evident that I’m irrelevant to society/ That’s what you’re telling me, penitentiary would only hire me.” That’s some powerful stuff right there. Potently powerful. 4.5 Sam’s Pick Of The Week


Bianca: rockos
4.5 Bianca‘s Pick Of The Week

Jesse Davidson- Laika

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/jesse-davidson-9/laika[/soundcloud]

Sam: On the surface this is such a simple song but there are so many different amalgamations of genres in it. On first listen I got a strong Chet Faker vibe but there’s so much more to it than simply labeling it with a lazy comparison like that. Davidson’s voice sounds like Death Cab For Cutie’s Ben Gibbard if he spent his early years listening to R&B/soul and the instrumental oscillates between crisp electronica and expansive psychedelia with the chorus taking a turn towards Tame Impala.

What I’ve described it above makes it sound like a truncated, mess of a song but it isn’t. It’s actually quite a simple melody lifted by a melting pot of different genres that effortlessly blend into one another. Laika is definitely the strongest track from Davidson yet and the clubs are going to go crazy for this one. I’m actually keen to hear him on something even more expansive, borrowing more of those elements that he uses in the chorus of this. That’s when he sounds truly unique. 3.5

Bianca: clouds 4

Drake- Energy

Sam: If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late is wayyyy polished for a mixtape. Energy is definitely the best track on the record and that’s because Drake just digs in and goes hard for three minutes. There’s no singing, there’s no pop hooks, there’s no features, it’s just him being wonderfully arrogant.

It’s such an interesting track because it essentially digs at the internet (“Fuck going online, that ain’t part of my day”) and the culture surrounding it yet his mixtape drop basically centred around the hysteria of the internet. Drake has kind of always been a walking contradiction and for some reason that works for him. Energy is really paranoid and that’s what makes it fascinating. It feels like he’s sleeping with one eye open even though he’s not quite sure who his enemies are. Sometimes we just need to stop making sense of Drake. That and his memes take up way too much of my brain capacity. 4

Bianca: giphy (1) 3

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Passion Pit Are Back With ‘Lifted Up (1985)’

Passion Pit are back with another slice of euphoric, electro-pop with Lifted Up (1985) from their forthcoming album Kindred. It’s not a huge departure from the kind of sound that permeated their last effort Gossamer with a huge chorus and sky-high vocals but if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. The new album is due out 21st April and will be up for pre-order soon where you will be able to download this and another new song titled Where The Sky Hangs. 

Check out the tracklist after the video.

Kindred Tracklist:

1. Lifted Up (1985)
2. Whole Life Story
3. Where the Sky Hangs
4. All I Want
5. Five Foot Ten (I)
6. Dancing on the Grave
7. Until We Can’t (Let’s Go)
8. Looks Like Rain
9. My Brother Taught Me How To Swim
10. Ten Feet Tall (II)

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-17 at 3.30.47 pm

Ty Dolla $ign Joins Forces With Charli XCX, Tinashe And Cashmere Cat

Screen Shot 2015-02-17 at 3.30.47 pm

Norwegian producer Cashmere Cat is becoming the go to producer at the moment. He produced Ariana Grande‘s brilliant Be My Baby last year and also popped up on Kanye West’s Wolves last week. Now he’s produced the latest Ty Dolla $ign single with Stargate and got Charli XCX and Tinashe on board as well. It’s an all star lineup for Drop That Kitty which will appear on Ty’s debut album “coming soon”, according to his YouTube.

The track centres around XCX’s abrasive hook, with Ty and Tinashe delivering silky smooth vocals to perfectly juxtapose the hook. Before Fancy Charli XCX would have been such an odd choice for a hip-hop track but now she’s suddenly become the Ashanti of this decade, which we’re fine with.

Charli XCX will be in the country soon for Groovin The Moo. Dates below:

Wednesday, 29th April
Metro Theatre
Sydney

Friday, 1st May
Corner Hotel
Melbourne

Thursday, 7th May
The Met
Brisbane

silent-alarm

Bloc Party’s Silent Alarm 10 Years On

BlocParty

In the ten years since Bloc Party released their iconic debut album Silent Alarm, there’s been much discussion about how indie bands fit into the music scene. Guitar music has been declared dead and then reborn a number of times, but the truth is most of the bands that occupied that spectrum of music in 2005 have since died or faded. Bloc Party’s fourth album, released in 2012, failed to excite like their past releases and their lead singer Kele Okereke has turned predominantly to electronic music.

In 2005, twee was popular. It was cool to be British, it was cool to play a high-slung guitar and it was cool to have ironic, lengthy song titles. Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs, Elbow and Maximo Park thrived while the Arctic Monkeys were arriving as the coolest nerds on the planet. Of course now, Alex Turner is a high-quiffed rock god and the Arctic Monkeys have shed nearly any signs of indie tweeness that they ever had in favour of a confident, stadium-ready sound. In comparison, Franz Ferdinand, Kaiser Chiefs and Maximo Park have fallen far from their perch at the top of the Alternative rock pyramid of 2005.

···

At this point it’s uncertain whether we will ever hear a new Bloc Party album again. Kele has just released his sophomore record Doubt and also ruled out any possibility of a Silent Alarm anniversary tour. But 10 years ago, Silent Alarm had Bloc Party pegged as the greatest indie-rock band around at that time. Pitchfork and NME both agreed (a rare conclusion) that Silent Alarm was brilliant with the latter awarding it the title of the best album of 2005. For context’s sake, Franz Ferdinand, Arcade Fire, The White Stripes and Kaiser Chiefs also featured on that list.

The indie band was flourishing. Myspace was a thing and the song you chose to play on your myspace page was just as important as a perfectly-angled profile picture. You couldn’t just choose a pop song, you had to select a song by an artist that people would think you were cool for having known or thank you for introducing them. Bloc Party fit that brief perfectly. Silent Alarm was explicitly melodic enough to please people on the surface and deep enough for music snobs to pick apart delightedly.

Let’s not sell Silent Alarm short, however. It wasn’t just an album for people’s mySpace page. It was much more than that. It was an album that stood out in a year when the music industry was flooded with indie-rock albums. It was a confident debut that was aware of what it had to do in order to impress. It was emotional, daring, expansive and colourful. As far as Okereke was concerned, every song had to sound like a single. Every song had to hit you as hard on the first listen as on the twentieth. As Pitchfork pointed out at the time, Bloc Party’s biggest strength and weakness was that they “are like one of those people who are so well-groomed that it’s hard to remember exactly what they look like.”

At the time I could measure how great a guitar-band’s melody was by how many people sung along to it when they track started. Still today if Silent Alarm is played for a room of people they will at least murmur the riffs of Banquet and Helicopter. The riffs were just as important as vocal hooks were and acted as a temptation to draw you into the songs within the first few seconds. Listen to the first few chords of This Modern Love and your heart immediately jumps into your throat.

···

When the album came out NME said that it was “time for anti-heroes”. Nowadays it’s almost more likeable to be a ‘freak’ than to be cool, as Lady Gaga has worked so hard to champion, but back then it was very almost unheard of for a band to be so different and yet be so cool. Oasis were cool because they were abrasive rockstars. The Libertines were appealing because they were anarchic. Coldplay fit in because they were creating stadium-rock that attached them to no type of person and as a consequence made them appealing to every type of person. NME writes, “Bloc Party are to be believed in because they are a band for the whites, the blacks, the straights, the hip-hop kids, the freaks, the geeks, the emo kids, the punk-funkers, the queers and, yes, the fashionistas.”

Silent Alarm dealt with themes of sleep deprivation, consumption and love. It’s never derogatory nor does it ever brag about bad behaviour. You won’t hear anything that would require them to shout it through a megaphone, instead they’re beautifully subtle. Okereke is gay but love was dealt with as love. None of the lyrics ever confine issues to a certain type of person. Rather the songs are about the universally differing emotions of human-beings. Those that don’t suit just one type of person. As such Silent Alarm was an album for all those people that NME listed and more. Albums that manage to do that transcend genres. You didn’t need to be a fan of indie rock to appreciate Silent Alarm. This is still a quality that drawers us to albums today. As an example, Caribou’s Our Love and Sharon Van Etten’s Are We There from last year also succeeded because they dealt with love and life in a way that was both personal and universal.

It should be kept in mind that Okereke was a gay, black man operating in an indie rock world mostly dominated by white men who made their appreciation of good-looking women almost suspiciously explicit. Not that Silent Alarm needs that kind of sentiment attached to it because it’s lyrical content was so far above being petty.

Some of the above makes out that Bloc Party weren’t incredibly cool. That’s not my intention. Bloc Party were cool. They operated in a time when hype bands had to be cool. They were well-dressed, guitar-thrashing Brits who sung about sex. But they did so in their own way. There were never stories of the band stumbling out of clubs with Kate Moss nor did they try to dress with the same rock swagger or cite The Smiths as a lifelong reference when it was in vogue to do so. Okereke admitted to Uncut that he’s only been a Smiths fan for a short time. Most people are in the same boat, but rarely do they admit it. Apparently everyone owns an original copy of The Smiths on vinyl. The point is, Bloc Party were cool on their own terms. Okereke even told Pitchfork in 2006, “I feel that’s important that I have some place to go that isn’t on the cover of a magazine. I signed up to make music. That’s it.”

···

The final point to make about Bloc Party is that Silent Alarm feels fresh. Every band was referencing bands from the past. The Strokes harked loosely back to The Ramones, then every band referenced The Strokes for ten years. Kaiser Chiefs drew influences from The Beatles and The Clash. Franz Ferdinand cited ‘80s artists Orange Juice and Josef K. Silent Alarm never felt as if the band were looking back for inspiration. There was definitely signs of inspiration from the current British indie-rock scene of the time, but if there were any influences they were modern. In the same interview with Pitchfork, Okereke said, “There’s too much rock that relies a fetishism or nostalgia for the old ways. That’s a real enemy to music. It needs to be constantly looking forward.”

···

In 2005, I flipped between Eminem, Green Day and The Black Eyed Peas because that’s what the radio told me to listen to. I loved it. But when a friend’s older brother passed Silent Alarm onto us we were transfixed. It opened up a whole different world of music to us and while most of it wasn’t as good as Bloc Party’s debut it at least showed me that there was more out there than what Kyle and Jackie O were counting down on 2Dayfm.

When I listen to Franz Ferdinand, The Killers or even The White Stripes now the feeling is nostalgic. I’m not necessarily interested by how good the album is, I’m more concerned about connecting to a certain period of time where, as a teen, I was discovering more than just what commercial radio was playing. Silent Alarm goes beyond that. A good melody is timeless. Personality is timeless. Silent Alarm is still listened to today because it still sounds great amongst everything else. Yes, the guitar-oriented stylings are distinctly 2005 but it still packs an emotional punch that many bands today leave behind in order to be relevant or live up to the hype. Silent Alarm is the ultimate buzz band album because it translated past that. It became a classic rather than an early millennium throwaway.

Catlips

Listen To ‘Fade’ By Budding Perth Producer Catlips

Catlips

There’s no better way to work yourself into the week that with a sugar-high courtesy of Aussie producer Catlips. Catlips has been doing the rounds as a DJ for a while now, making a name for herself in the clubs as well as remixing for the likes of Kucka and Chela. She’s about to release her debut EP Casual (in March!) and has dropped the lead single off it titled Fade. It’s an all-out club stomper that is sweeter than it is sour with popping beats and elastic synths underneath a warm vocal sample. Aussie girls are killing it within the electronic music realms at the moment and there is more than enough room for Catlips to join Alison Wonderland, Nina Las Vegas and more.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/pilerats/catlips-fade[/soundcloud]

 

 

 

10songsDrake

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Florence + The Machine, Hot Chip, Kendrick Lamar + More

10songsDrake

Sorry too busy listening to Drake’s If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late to write an intro.

Kanye West – Wolves (Feat. Sia and Vic Mensa)

This one is only a recording from Kanye’s Adidas launch this morning but it’s an official video and the audio beats a lot of what was hanging around this morning. It’s third song we’ve heard from Kanye in as many months but it’s the first that doesn’t feature Paul McCartney and harks back to the stylings of Yeezus more than anything else. Sia and VIc Mensa are on the track too, delivering soulful verses over an industrial, brooding beat. It’s the first track on his new album which is still yet to be officially announced. Go to 8min29secs to hear the track.

Hot Chip – Huarache Lights

Hot Chip are back! It’s been a big week for album announcements this week but this is definitely one of the biggest. The group plan to release their new album Why Make Sense? soon and the first single from it is Huarache Lights. It’s perfectly melds together organic and electronic instrumentation as Hot Chip tracks so often do while also incorporating some Daft Punk-esque vocals. It’s good to have them back.

Florence + The Machine – What Kind Of Man

Speaking of big album releases, they don’t come much bigger than this. Florence + The Machine have dropped the details of their forthcoming record, How Big How Blue How Beautiful, and it’s headed up by this corker of a single What Kind Of Man. It’s more aggressive than anything we heard on her sophomore record Ceremonials, with Welch also pushing her vocal comfort zone. It’s electric and makes us very excited for the album.

Kendrick Lamar – The Blacker The Berry

Another big release (so many!) was Kendrick Lamar‘s The Blacker The Berry which follows his single i from last year. i won two Grammys this week but ironically it was one of his weaker songs. The Blacker The Berry is a return to form with Lamar in a much darker mode lamenting about racism in his signature aggressive tone. This is one of the most thoughtful hip-hop tracks we’ve heard in a while.

Drake – If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late

Drake just dropped a whole album called If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late while we were writing this. We haven’t had a chance to listen to the whole thing so we’re just going to place this one here and direct you to buy the album. This has been a huge week for music and this is an incredible way to end it. Most of us thought another Beyonce-like drop would be impossible but Drake has proved us wrong.

Chromatics – Just Like You

As if this day couldn’t get any bigger, in the middle of the whole Drake saga Chromatics have dropped the first single, Just Like You, from their forthcoming album Dear Tommy. It’s a melodramatic, dim-lit number with those signature drawling vocals. It’s a sweet, reflective track that’s a far cry from Kill For Love, which led the previous album.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/johnnyjewel/chromatics-just-like-you[/soundcloud]

Snoh – Emotional

For a new artist getting RZA on board as a producer is not too shabby at all. The raspy Swedish singer’s new track is called Emotional and it’s a jazzed-up track full of passion and energy. It’s perfectly produced and intricate enough to keep us discovering new textures. Snoh is definitely one to watch if not only for the fact that she’s a Swede and they are perfect.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/i-d-online-1/premiere-snoh-emotional[/soundcloud]

Jimmy Napes – Making Of Me

Disclosure and Sam Smith collaborator Jimmy Napes is finally taking the spotlight with his solo project. His previous effort Give It Up was a little demure but Making Of Me heads straight for the dance floor. It sounds like it could’ve slotted nicely into Disclosure’s debut Settle with its deep house baseline and soulful vocals. And we have no problem with that at all.

[soundcloud width=”750″ height=”200″]https://soundcloud.com/jimmynapes/making-of-me[/soundcloud]

Emile Haynie – Come Find Me (Feat. Lykke Li and Romy from the xx)

Producer Emile Haynie is gearing up to release his star-studded debut album We Fall at the end of this month. So far we’ve heard collaborations with Lana Del Rey, Dev Hynes and Charlotte Gainsbourg and now we have a track, Come Find Me, with Lykke Li and Romy from the xx. As you’d imagine it’s a sombre affair given the choice of features but it’s beautiful and stirring. It sounds more like an interlude than anything with Lykke Li barely singing more than 10 words but it makes us excited for the album nonetheless.

Jessie Ware- Champagne Kisses

This isn’t a new song but goddam this video is just so good. Champagne Kisses is the fourth single to be lifted from Jessie Ware‘s wonderful Tough Love LP and as such it’s been gifted with the video treatment. It’s her most colourful video to date with director Christopher Sweeney creating an absurdist, weird and wonderful world for Ware. The whole thing is visually spectacular.

©2017 THE INTERNS MUSIC, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.