Sade, "The Big Unknown"


Sade "The Big Unknown" Windows Soundtrack (out now on Sony) Though she's only a few months shy of her 60th birthday, Helen Folasade Adu remains a force like nobody else. On the stunning "The Big Unknown," Sade proves that her quiet storm is still a Category 5, as she glides effortlessly over oceanic, Read more

Since U Been Gone: The Best Of What I Missed Last Week


Miya Folick "Thingamajig" Premonitions (out 10.26 on Terrible) With each new single, the talented LA vocalist is strengthening the case that her forthcoming LP could be one of the best debuts of the year. Her flexible vocals always stretch further than you expect, and she uses her seemingly unlimited range to exact maximum Read more

Since U Been Gone: The Best Of What I Missed Last Week


Welp, this is embarrassing. The week I roll out a new round-up column, I respond by posting exactly zero times. My editorial staff (of one) was pretty slammed this week, but that's no excuse. Hopefully this piece can make up for it, dear readers. I'll do better this week, because, Read more

Since U Been Gone: The Best Of What I Missed Last Week


I was on vacay in England last week, and as I sat back down at my desk this morning, I realized that a massive amount of new music came out while I was gone. I'm going to try something new with quick one to two sentence recaps of some Read more

Lil Uzi Vert, "New Patek"


Lil Uzi Vert "New Patek" Digital Single Easily one of most joyful songs of the year, the hyperactive, hypertalented Philadelphian returns with six (6!) electric minutes of swirling, tuneful hip-hop. Over Dolan Beats' glorious crystallized piano keys and tiptoeing hi-hats, Uzi goes the fuck in as only he can, slaloming through the beat Read more

Images & Words

Images & Words: YG, “Who Do You Love?” (f/ Drake)

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YG
“Who Do You Love?” (f/ Drake)
My Krazy Life (out 03.18 on CTE/Def Jam)

You’ve probably heard this song, and also you’ve seen the video a thousand times. That said, one of Young Angel’s best recent verses gets visuals, and YG and Mustard are putting my home state back on that map. That’s more than enough to warrant a post.

Images & Words: SOHN, “Artifice”

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SOHN
“Artifice”
Tremors (out 04.07 on 4AD)

Another day, another album to get ridiculously excited about. Today the sensitive British-born, Vienna-based R&B/pop vocalist announced that his highly-anticipated debut LP finally has a release date! Considering he’s been releasing tantalizing singles since early last year, April seems just around the corner. If that wasn’t enough, he also graced us with a lush new track and a dramatic, slow-motion visual that is reminiscent of that classic Wax video from the 90s. Good vibes all around!

Images & Words: i do not love., “i like you most”

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i do not love.
“i like you most”
idnl. (out now on limited 7″ on Beko)

I don’t know who he is, and I don’t know what he’s singing about, but the Mansfield, Massachusetts shoegazer’s new 4-song EP is an absolute knock-out. The singer/songwriter sets the way-back machine to the slate-grey Manchester skies of 1982 and comes out with four lovelorn, dreamy gems. I’m not going to tell you the bands the disc reminds me of, because it simply wouldn’t be fair to the kid. That said, it’s pretty obvious as soon as you hear his vulnerable baritone, the undulating basslines, the jangly guitars, and the buoyant drum patterns. One of the real hidden gems of recent times.

While you’re at it, check out the EP’s brilliant first single, “Dreams Please Too.”

Images & Words: Elbow, “New York Morning”

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Elbow
“New York Morning”
The Take Off and Landing of Everything (out 3/10 on Fiction)

After a few years away, Manchester’s kings of wide-eyed triumphant melancholia are back, and evidently they are returning with extra helpings of their life-affirming, windswept Elbow-ness. The lead single from their 6th LP, “New York Morning,” is exactly what you’d think Guy Garvey would write about falling in love with the easiest city to fall in love with in the world. As a somewhat recent NYC transplant, I’d be lying if I claimed that I don’t totally understand his wholehearted, earnest (read: cheesy af) love letter to the city, and I’m sure this will find its way into my earbuds on walks around the city. Simply put, it is Elbow at their unabashed best.

Images & Words: P. Morris, “Hold Tight”

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P. Morris
“Hold Tight”
Cold Confessions (Folie Deuce Compilation)

The young Angelino (formerly known as Morri$) flips Justin Bieber’s “Hold Tight” to perfection in the build-up to his aptly-titled debut LP, Debut, which is due out on February 25. Morris’ work has subtlety that is sometimes hard to find in the genre, and the youngster is rapidly building a very impressive back catalogue,  including production credits for our girl Kelela, LE1F, and Feist.

Images & Words: Memoryhouse, “Get Back”

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Memoryhouse
“Get Back”
Taken from NPR’s World Cafe

Since 2010, there are very few artists that I have devoted more words to than this resplendent Ontario-based dream-wave duo. Simply put, their near-perfect, celestial debut EP, The Years, is one of my favorite albums of the last five years. Its follow-up, The Slideshow Effect, didn’t glitter in quite the same gauzy way, as the group opted for a more upbeat approach, resulting in a slightly uneven effort. That said, I continue to have incredible hope for the duo, and this cut (and the other new ones played at World Cafe) show that The Years may have just been the sound of a young group scratching the surface.

Listen to the whole session, over at NPR.

Images & Words: Arcade Fire, “Afterlife”

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Arcade Fire
“Afterlife”
Reflektor (out now on Merge)

First thing’s first, I like Arcade Fire. I do. However, I’ve found it incredibly difficult to get excited about their critically-acclaimed, fourth album. Yesterday, my good friend and old roommate (who has stubbornly refused to let me ignore Reflektor) finally sent me something that has made me sit up and take notice. “Afterlife” is the kind of engrossing, epic (vomit) statement that made me fall in love with their earlier work, and the video is as disarming and emotive as the track. Hopefully, it will be the foothold that I need to get into the (supposed) majesty of this record, but even if it doesn’t turn out to be, at least there’s now a part of the front-runner for Album of the Year that I understand.

Images & Words: Sampha, “Too Much”

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Sampha
“Too Much”
Too Much/Happens 7″ (out 11/12 on Young Turks)

Fresh off the quality, Dual EP, the Central-ish Londoner takes over the Nothing Was the Same track that he guested on. It’s a gorgeous, spare take on the original (which, he stole the show on) that highlights his distinct, evocative vocals. On repeat.

Images & Words: Freddie Gibbs, “Eastside Moonwalker”

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Freddie Gibbs
“Eastside Moonwalker”
ESGN — Evil Seeds Grow Naturally (out now on ESGN)

Somehow, I totally missed the Gary, IN-native’s quality debut LP when it dropped in June, but as they say, better late than never. Admittedly, the album suffers from its bloated tracklist (nobody needs to hear 19 songs by anybody), but its many highlights remind us that when the uber-underrated, combative MC is on top form, not too many can touch him. The devastating, twinkling key-kissed “Eastside Moonwalker” is a perfect example of the 31 year-old at his superlative best.

Images & Words: Julianna Barwick, “Ash Day” (A Take Away Show)

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Julianna Barwick
“Ash Day” (A Take Away Show)

The Brooklyn-based purveyor of ethereal, sweeping ultra-gorgeousness performs a new song that is as beautiful as the serene streets of Iceland where it was filmed. Standing on a chilly-looking urban avenue, the Missouri-native graciously passes out candy to passing children while she performs a celestial, layered hymn, as only she can. Sah-wooooon.