Monthly Archives: October 2016

Hot Jam of The Day: Kojo Funds x Abra Cadabra, “Dun Talkin”

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Kojo Funds x Abra Cadabra “Dun Talkin” Digital Single Two of the UK’s biggest young talents link up on this monstrous new single. “Dun Talkin” works so well because both artists’ booming voices tiptoe the line between melody and malevolence, resulting in a track that is alluring and intimidating. Abra effortlessly switches between a gruff rasp and an R&B tenor, while Kojo’s earworm hook and easy verse ties the whole thing together. It’s definitely one of the biggest collabs in a year full of great ones.

Images & Words: Boogie, “N**ga Needs”

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Boogie “N**ga Needs” Thirst 48 Part II Though he burst on to the scene with the banger “Oh My,” the Angelino born Anthony Dixson has always been one of the most thoughtful rappers around. And on his impressive new mixtape, he doubles down on his craft, building an album that perfectly balances reflective numbers like this standout single with fun, breezy tracks like the K Camp-assisted “Slide on U.” The whole record is worthy of your time, even if he hasn’t had another single …

Images & Words: Matt Kivel, “Forgiveness”

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Matt Kivel “Forgiveness” (f/ Bonnie Prince Billy) Fires on the Plain (out now on Driftless) Over the years, I’ve written a lot about the LA singer-songwriter’s brother Jesse but haven’t written much about the younger Kivel, Matt. Kivel is the architect of two really interesting folk-ish albums this year — February’s Janus and October’s excellent Fires on the Plain — and he gives one of his standout tracks some creepy visuals. His soft voice interchanges beautifully with Will Oldham’s, and his careful, …

Hot Jam of The Day: Newman Wolf, “Computer”

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Newman Wolf “Computer” Please Keep Talking (out 11.11 on Body High) The newest release from Samo Sound Boy’s reliable Body High imprint treads much of the same territory that the LA-based collective made its name off. Hailing from somewhere in the depths of LA County, Newman Wolf’s new single is a delicious slab of evocative dance music with touches of trance production and an emotional, mantric vocal sample. “Computer” may start off slowly, but it gradually builds to a monster crescendo …

Hot Jam of the Day: JAHKOY, “California Heaven”

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JAHKOY “California Heaven” (f/ Schoolboy Q) Foreign Water (out 10.28 on Def Jam) As a California native who recently moved out to the East Coast, listening to a song with the refrain “heaven must be somewhere in California” will be dangerous during the NYC’s frigid winter months. However, it’s still warm enough outside to listen to the Toronto native’s ode to the Golden State without being overcome with homesickness. The rising 22 year-old is blessed with a warm, easy tenor …

Hot Jams of the Day: Wet, “The Middle” / “Turn Away”

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Wet “The Middle” / “Turn Away” The Middle / Turn Away Even though they only released their debut album, Don’t You, back in January, the Brooklyn trio #blessed us by surprise releasing a couple of tasty new tracks. The former is a classic Wet ballad with vocalist Kelly Zutrau drifting over plaintive piano chords and decorative, reverb-soaked guitarwork. The beat picks up a little on the moody, mid-tempo latter, which feels like a slight update of their signature sound and a promising sign of things to come.

Images & Words: Tornado Wallace, “Trance Encounters”

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Tornado Wallace “Trance Encounters” Lonely Planet (out 11.28 on Running Back) From no apparent reason, New York decided to bring back summer for the last couple of days. It’s sunny, the subway is sweaty, and the Melbourne native’s sweltering, trance-inspired house is just about the perfect soundtrack to the mid-afternoon heat. Wallace’s sound is expansive and easy with choppy electric guitars glistening over beds of synth and a languid backbeat.

The Round-Up: The Best Tracks of the Third Quarter

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Prince Bopp “Bandit” Digital Single In short, the Cincinnati native’s heartfelt single is the most slept-on great song of 2016. In just three and half minutes, the independent newcomer comes full circle, detailing his struggle to bounce back from losing his first love and his journey to find hope. The track’s bleak opening finds the young man battling through heartbreak, drugs, and deep loneliness. But as “Bandit” moves, the darkness slowly fades into light, as he moves far enough away …

Hot Jam of the Day: Hannah Diamond, “Fade Away”

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Hannah Diamond “Fade Away” Digital Single Though the much of the bloom has faded from the PC Music rose, to my ears, Hannah Diamond has always been the label’s most interesting artist, thanks to the fact that her songwriting has never taken a back seat to the label’s tiresome obsession with presentation and concept. Like many of her best songs (“Pink and Blue,” “Attachment” and “Every Night”), “Fade Away” is basically a straightforward electro-pop love song with light trance influences. Lyrics like “I always …

Hot Jam of the Day: Krishane, “Found Da Boi” (f/ Wande Coal)

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Krishane “Found Da Boi” (f/ Wande Coal) Digital Single Why waste your time with the myriad American artists who are scrambling (and mostly failing) to cram African and Caribbean sounds into their formulaic radio pop, when you could get the genuine article? One of those artists to watch is Krishane (né St Aubyn Antonio Levy), the son of reggae/dancehall godfather Barrington Levy. The London-via-Jamaica vocalist’s sound is indicative of the thriving, increasingly international scene, as it features traces of Afro-pop, dancehall, soca, and pure pop all stirred up in a delicious …