Willow Smith takes a break from being a hair whipping tween-star and reemerges a tortured artisté… Apparently. You’re bound to make a statement (and a stir) when you’re the 12-year old progeny of Will Smith and decide to release a new single sampling… Radiohead no less. Kids today.
For what its worth ‘Sugar and Spice’ stands alone beautifully and lyrically speaking it appears to have Willow digging deep: “I sat in front of the TV screen / Sad he’s always screaming at me / they want to puncture me / and wonder why I bleed / Take a swing at me / I’ll fight till the death / My light is bright / I tried to be sugar and spice / But I’m melancholy and can’t do anything right / The monsters under my bed keep making noise at night / I just want silence”.
Given her age the fragility of her voice can be forgiven and to her credit she uses it to the best of its ability, delivering an almost Rihanna-esque performance (take that as you will). For the most part though this isn’t bad… A little far fetched perhaps, but definitely not bad.
Iconic British artist David Bowie has surprised his legions of fans by releasing an unannounced new single and the promise of a new album. In celebration of his 66th birthday Bowie released ‘Where Are We Now?’ on his website to much fanfare – the song has literally lit up the blogophere, the broadsheets and mainstream news channels. The new single and forthcoming album The Next Day (due out in March) will end the 10 year gap since his last album Reality in 2003. Produced by frequent-collaborator Tony Visconti the album (as with the single) was written entirely by Bowie in New York and marks the Thin White Dukes’ 30th studio album.
‘Where Are We Now’ is a surprisingly retrospective song for an artist who rarely thinks in nostalgia – it focuses heavily on the fall of the Berlin Wall (a historic moment that for many is attributed in part to Bowie’s politically charged 1987 concert in the German capital) and his life during that period.
A statement from Bowie’s record label read: “Throwing shadows and avoiding the industry treadmill is very DavidBowie despite his extraordinary track record that includes album sales in excess of 130m, not to mention his massive contributions in the area of art, fashion, style, sexual exploration, and social commentary.”
Shy Girls is an emerging singer out of Portland who recently released ‘Under Attack’, a follow-up single to his 2011 debut release (and 2012 re-release) Sex in the City. Little is known of Dan Vidmar (the man behind the Shy Girls moniker) but what’s immediate is the earjaculation you’ll have when you hear this song.
If his debut EP was inspired by 90′s R&B/R&B boybands, then this graduates itself into ’80′s legends’ territory. Listen for Prince in the synths, Phil Collins’ in those drum breakdowns, mother’fu*king Kenny G in that sax solo and MJ in that guitar groove. Vidmar’s use of vocal reverb (with perhaps a respectable nod to How To Dress Well) and sustained chords gently brings everything into the present.
Earlier today we promised some more goodies from AlunaGeorge after posting their album title track ‘Body Music’ and here it is. Along with premiering their aforementioned new single on BBC Radio 1xtra this afternoon the Pop duo also performed a cover of Frank Ocean’s‘Thinking About You’ for their Live Lounge…
Around 10 hours ago a mysterious account by the name of 3rdEyeGirl appeared on Twitter (along with a subsequent YouTube channel) and with it a string of cryptic Prince-related tweets. Two tweets directed folk to remixes of ‘Rock and Roll Love Affair’ and an extended version of ‘Laydown’ (off the 20Ten album). Another led followers to a rehearsal video of ‘Bambi’ (originally recorded for his 1979 debut), while another led the devote to this – a seemingly brand new song titled ‘Same Page Different Book’. And yes, yes it’s fonky.
It’s unclear right now whether this is Prince “on his marketing” or whether someone’s got their hands on his unreleased material. For their sakes (and ours) lets hope the former is the truth. And if it is – lets pray for more.
… My bets are that this is all him – if it wasn’t, surely none of this would have lasted 5 minutes online.
P.s Hit the jump for the other tweeted material.
Update: The track has been pulled from YouTube by ‘Controversy Music’… Hehe
October saw SBTRKT conclude a hugely successful year of worldwide touring with two sold out shows at London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire. Anyone whose seen SBTRKT’s show will know he’s mastered the art of translating his electronic productions into an enthralling live show, alongside frequent collaborator Sampha. Wanting to capture the magic they created on stage SBTRKT commissioned a 12 camera crew and assigned each one to capture a different element of the show. The results can be viewed up top.
Both the videos and audio are available to download now, exclusively on iTunes. Additionally Young Turks will be releasing ‘LIVE’ as a limited run of 500 LP / DVD packages housed in hand-screen-printed sleeves – more info here.
We already warned you that this year belongs to AlunaGeorge and if their single ‘Diver’ wasn’t enough to convince you, maybe this will. Take a listen to the sensational title track from their debut album Body Music – due out in June. There’s nothing not to love here. The sexy downtempo is as melodically luscious as it is musically engaged (you hear that production?) – Aluna’s seductive vocals lead the charge yet again.
Expect another cool gem from these two later today (fingers crossed!) Listen to AlunaGeorge’s cover of Frank Ocean’s ‘Thinking About You’ here.
Very little can to be said about Koreless and Sampha that hasn’t already been said a million times on the blogophsere. Unsurprising then that their pairing as Short Stories and the arrival of their single ‘On the Way’ got a lot of people excited. The song originally surfaced a while ago and then again a few weeks back on Boiler Room, but now it’s ready for official release. The single’s b-side ‘Let It Go’ was also originally unveiled back in ’11, take a (re)listen to that below too. Pre-order both here on 12″ and digital formats.
Very few artists can balance and incorporate their background singing in gospel choirs with the delicacy Active Child can. As a musician and vocalist he’s able to divulge his love for choral harmonies within a fragile melting pot of electronica, ambient pop and soul/R&B. This rendition of ‘His Eye Is On the Sparrow’, a song known and covered by virtually everyone, has been reinvented by Grossi in the quiet understatedness that he’s now admired for.
Jillian Hervey and Lucas Goodman are together known as Lion Babe, an emerging NYC outfit who recently released their debut single ‘Treat Me Like Fire’. The single offers a dark, scratchy production and provides a good space for lead single Jillian to express herself. She seems inspired by Erykah Badu’s New Amerykah: Part 1(in my opinion, at least) and while vocally I do still need some convincing, I think the juncture she’s arrived at here could be pretty interesting moving forward.