Hot Jam of the Day: T-Pain, "Textin' My Ex" (f/ Tiffany Evans)


T-Pain “Textin’ My Ex” (f/ Tiffany Evans) Oblivion Tomorrow, T-Pain drops his long-awaited fifth LP, the culmination of the most trying era of the R&B innovator’s career. Through no real fault of his own, Pain (né Faheem Najm) went from the jolly ringmaster of a multi-million dollar radio empire to a Read more

Images & Words: SOPHIE, "It's Okay To Cry"


SOPHIE "It's Okay to Cry" Digital Single Every once in a while, somebody puts out something that takes your breath away. "It's Okay to Cry" is absolutely one of those moments. After spending her early career lurking behind faceless, chaotic, schizophrenic experimental dance music, the 32 year-old has stepped into the light and up to the microphone. The result is Read more

Hot Jam of the Day: King Krule, "Logos"


King Krule "Logos" The OOZ (out now on XL) Archy Marshall's excellent new album feels like a collection of those wonky dream states that exist somewhere in that nether region between being wake and sleep. Though I'm still digesting all 19 of its songs, the hypnotic, jazzy "Logos" immediately stuck out. Over languid jazz chords Read more

Hot Jam of the Day: The World is a Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid to Die, "For Robin"


The World is a Beautiful Place & I Am No Longer Afraid to Die "For Robin" Always Foreign (Epitaph) There are many, many awful things about addiction, but little is as insidious as the way it pushes its victims away from loved ones from their previous life and deeper into their illness. Anybody who has lost someone to Read more

Images & Words: Stormzy, "4PM in London"


Stormzy "4PM in London" Digital Single Turning freestyles into anthems is nothing new to the ultra-talented Londoner. And though the ravenous "4PM in London" was probably written, it feels alive in the same way that many of those aforementioned tracks did. Unlike Drake (the man who originally rapped on this beat), Stormzy's got the rare ability to Read more

Hot Jam of the Day

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

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screen-shot-2016-10-07-at-11-56-57-amHannah 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 thought I’d be the picture saved on your screen” pack the emotional resonance much of the label’s other music lacks and elevates her music beyond the rest of PC Music’s trite, surface-level societal criticism.

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

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screen-shot-2016-10-04-at-2-44-12-pmKrishane
“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 sonic stew. On his newest single, the 22 year-old tiptoes through an ultra-smooth arrangement and passionately belts out one of the most ecstatic hooks of the year.

Hot Jam of the Day: Kate Bush, “Prologue” (Live)

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screen-shot-2016-09-29-at-11-41-04-amKate Bush
“Prologue” (Live at Hammersmith)
Before the Dawn (out 11.25 on Concord/Fish
 People)
Back in 2014, when Kate Bush announced her first shows since 1979, I seriously considered flying from New York to London to see the legendary Brit in the flesh. Of course, I didn’t go because money and work, but it looks like we’ll all be able to hear it thanks to the upcoming triple disc concert recording. The first taste is unsurprisingly masterful, as the 58 year-old rolls through an extended version of a cut from her ever underrated 2005 release, Aerial. The most striking thing to me is the sustained pristine clarity and vitality of her voice, nearly 40 years removed from her classic 1978 debut. The magic is clearly still there, and all I can do is sit and hope for a New York date in the future.

Here it over at Paper.

Hot Jam of the Day: Itasca, “No Consequence”

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screen-shot-2016-09-23-at-4-52-37-pmItasca
“No Consequence”
Open to Change (out 09.30 on Paradise of Bachelors)

Just a week away from the most anticipated release of her career, Kayla Cohen drops Open to Change’s beautiful, dusty third single. The LA-based singer-songwriter has a knack for crafting gentle, soothing folk music with a hints of darkness and palpable atmospheres. And on “No Consequence,” she uses a languid slide guitar line to get the desired effect, expertly framing her sublime vocals and nimble fingerpicking. Suffice it to say, I cannot wait to hear the rest of this thing.

Hot Jams of the Day: Kelela, Elysia Crampton & Adrian Piper, “Final Exam” / “Reference Track TF Scrape”

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screen-shot-2016-09-22-at-6-20-57-pmElysia Crampton, Kelela & Adrian Piper
“Final Exam” / “Reference Track TF Scrape”
Anthem (The Vinyl Factory)
Experimental composer Elysia Crampton has been playing with Kelela’s voice for the last few years, so it’s exciting to hear the duo properly collaborate on two new tracks for the upcoming Total Freedom-produced soundtrack to the 9th Berlin Biennale. Part of the joy of Crampton’s music is its ambiguity, and these tracks both live in that space — part finished product, part work in progress. Kelela’s aqueous, evocative vocals are the perfect foil for Crampton’s productions that are often both soothing and chaotic. While there is no inkling of a potential collaborative album between these two longterm Thunder Penguin faves, it won’t stop me from dreaming about it.

Hot Jam of the Day: Abhi / Dijon, “Ignore”

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screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-11-41-16-amAbhi / Dijon
“Ignore”
Digital Single
We all have at least one “DON’T ANSWER” in our phonebooks, and the ultra-smooth Maryland R&B duo’s new single is an ode to the goons of our past who had either broke our heart, creeped us out, or let us down. And next time you are contemplating picking up when they invariably call or text, remember the sage wisdom of this song. One word, six letters: I G N O R E.

Hot Jam of the Day: How to Dress Well, “Can’t You Tell”

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htdw_tomkrell_014How To Dress Well
“Can’t You Tell”
Care (out 09.23 on Domino)
Ignoring the awkward, highly sus “consent pop” tag that Tom Krell is running with, Care‘s third single should delight the Colorado native’s growing fanbase. “Can’t You Tell” is a slab of swooning soft pop that is mostly about the very legitimate joys of fucking someone you actually care about. Sonically, the single also affirms Krell’s love of the emotional radio pop of yesteryear and highlights its increasing influence, recalling artists like Everything But the Girl and Simply Red.

Hot Jam of the Day: Jenny Hval, “Period Piece”

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Jenny Hval
“Period Piece”
Blood Bitch (out 09.30 on Sacred Bones)
We are now just two weeks away from hearing the Norwegian composer’s hugely anticipated follow-up to 2015’s Apocalypse, girl — my second favorite album of last year. Third single, “Period Piece,” tells the story of a trip to the OBGYN with an foreboding bassline, spare percussion, and faraway synths. Though the mood is unsettling, Hval reassures us that we shouldn’t be afraid because “it’s only blood.”

Hot Jam of the Day: Marissa Nadler, “The Best You Ever Had”

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Marissa Nadler
“The Best You Ever Had”
Bury Your Name (out 09.23 on Sacred Bones)
After already gracing us with one album of her trademark pastoral folk this year (the gorgeous, Strangers), the Boston singer-songwriter is supplementing it with a spare collection of home recordings. Our first taste, “The Best You Ever Had,” strips back Strangers‘ fuller arrangements to little more than a contemplative fingerpicked guitar, her evocative vocals, and light touches of keys. It’s both a satisfying nod to her early work and an indication of just how far she’s come over the last 10+ years.

Hot Jam of the Day: Cusp, “Adam”

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Cusp
“Adam”
Digital Single (out now on TAR)
Cusp is a collaboration between three up-and-coming UK artists — Xeno, Buchanan, and Kai Whiston (pictured) — and Louisiana-based producer Joe Petersen. While details about the group are still scare, this track is a tasty, noisy slab of future grime, pairing busy percussion with shadowy walls of synth. Any track this dense runs the risk of tipping over, but “Adam” strikes a balance masterfully, exploding with ideas without overflowing into a mess.