M.I.A. takes the piss out of Drake’s ‘Y.O.L.O’ with her brand new banger, ‘Y.A.L.A.’. Tapping into her Hindu roots, the explosive single focuses on the concept of reincarnation as a chaotic mash of electronic synths, rhythmic drums and shifting tempos flare in the background. Apart from the fiery Diplo-like-production, the Sri Lankan spitfire drops some pretty powerful lyrical bombs, “if you only live once, why keep doing the same shit?” and “Back home, where I come from, we keep being born again and again and again. That’s why they invented karma”. In other news, her fourth album Matangi (out November 5) is set to feature The Weeknd on two tracks: ‘Exodus’ and ‘Sexodus’.
Who would’ve thought Sia, The Weeknd and Diplo would ever feature on a track together, let alone for a soundtrack. Well they have and it’s pretty decent. Sia’s undeniably unique and infectious vocals are accompanied by Tesfaye’s sexy, vulnerable crooning. It all takes place over a grand yet emotively muted beat penned by Diplo. Take a listen to the theatrical slice of synth encrusted pop below; ’Elastic Heart’ is taken from The Hunger Games: Catching Fire soundtrack out November 19 (via Republic Records), which will also feature a second submission from The Weeknd titled ‘Devil May Cry’, plus new music from Lorde, Santigold, Christina Aguilera and Coldplay.
According to recent interviews Chris Brown channeled a lot of Michael Jackson, Sam Cooke and Stevie Wonder during the recording sessions for his forthcoming album X. I’d love to know what he was listening to when he was on that Guetta wave… I digress. MJ’s influence on Breezy’s career has been obvious from day one and while to an extent that’s cool and completely understandable – it is a bit worrying now. Despite great (albeit surprising) production from Diplo and a strong melody/vocal performance from Brown, ‘Fine China’ fails to demonstrate any originality, a fact that unfortunately ruins the entire experience. Also a sentiment not lost on his cringe new video either.
We’ve all come to know Chris Brown the ‘singer and dancer’, but will we ever meet Chris Brown the ‘artist’? I’m not convinced.
Usher scored his biggest hit with his Diplo produced single ‘Climax’ last year. With one song he reignited his career while simultaneously fooling his fans into believing he had returned (after a good few years of soul destroying Guetta-produced abominations) to his R&B heritage - unfortunately he mostly lied. ‘Climax’ flirted so closely to the edge of contemporary R&B that it ingeniously ticked a lot of boxes (old school heads, mainstreamers and new ‘alt-R&B’ fans) and did so at exactly the right time.
… So naturally the dynamic duo are back again – for better or for worse and unsurprisingly they’re up to the same tricks. ‘Go Missing’ is another fine-line walker – it toys with a cringeworthy over-the-top wobbly breakdown… But it never comes; They reign it in. Clever chaps. And like it’s predecessor, Usher’s voice does most of the work.
Flying Lotus, pioneer, adopter, adapter. If this unreleased audio premiered on Diplo’s Radio 1 show proves just a minute inkling of anything with it’s ripped bass, southern hats and lush sample looping for glory under a veil of dirty compression… it’s that he be put in an $80,000 studio with Drake or Kendrick immediately so we can get some history made. A deep banger, it’s great Lotus has chosen to unleash it from his recently disclosed hard drive. Let’s have some more then.
If ‘Ima Read’ was fierce, this new remix featuring Njena Redd Foxx, Gangsta Boo & Tricky is outright vicious. Reading enemies as casually they would their shopping list, Katz, Foxx and co aim to maim with callous shade – “Ima chop that bitch / Ima slice that bitch / Ima dice that bitch / Ima ice that bitch / I don’t like that bitch”.
Zebra Katz’ new single, along with a slew of remixes (which will also include appearances from Azealia Banks, Mao, Ira G, Cauzeone, Moroka, I Am A Camera, Ripley, Baise Haus, Nikko and Norrit) will be released via Diplo’s Mad Decent imprint Jeffrrees on September 16th.
Who knew back in 2009 Diplo (and formerly Switch’s) bashment side-project would turn into such an international monster, and viably so. ‘Get Free’ featuring Amber Coffman of The Dirty Projectors (make sure you’ve checked their latest LP Swing Lo Magellan) is a refreshing excursion from Lazer’s electro-heavy raucous stuff, into more lovers rock territory that’s somewhat gooey and adorable in the ears. The video, as with alot of Mad Decent and Diplo’s stuff with their appreciation of less exposed worlds, has a nice cultural artifact vibe about it too. Wine, skank and all the rest of it won’t you? Till Monday.
Cultural influencer M.I.A has announced that her new album Matangi will be released this December and will be released in conjunction with a book, film and exhibition. And, in her words, is a result of the “blows” she’s experienced in the industry over the past 3 years. And will serve as a “fuck you to them and thank you to you [her fans]“.
Answering questions from fans on twitter, the ‘Paper Planes’ singer revealed that the new music sounds like “Paul Simon on acid” and will feature no collaborations (with the exception of Missy Elliott & Azealia Banks who appeared on her ‘Bad Girls’ remix). She also appeared to take a jibe at producer and ex-boyfriend Diplo, claiming the only producers involved are the “ones that don’t act like a fame whore coloniser”. Deep.
The Roc Nation signed singer also revealed a partial tracklist too – peep that here.
As we all know, the original was a favourite here but sadly for some/us Usher’s album hasn’t quite go in the direction that most/we may have been led to presume.
… But the Diploma produced single did do the job of raising Usher’s profile within certain quarters (that until then had largely ignored his most recent offerings) and now 22 year old Londoner Raf Riley is doing the same. Some may say this remix envelopes more boundary blurring, avant-gardeness than Usher’s original but we don’t see that as a bad thing.
Yes Riley has incorporated a few pre-existing formulas here – chopped ‘n’ screwed verses, dubstep drops, but to his credit he’s mixed them well and keeps you guessing right to the end as to which way it might go..
Keep your ears peeled for Raf’s forthcoming EP Dog Unit on Diplo’s Jaffree records coming soon.