Lauryn Hill continues to battle her on-going legal problems by releasing, seemingly by force, a flaring new track online with the following statement attached:
“Here is a link to a piece that I was ‘required’ to release immediately, by virtue of the impending legal deadline. I love being able to reach people directly, but in an ideal scenario, I would not have to rush the release of new music… but the message is still there. In light of Wednesday’s tragic loss (of former label mate Chris Kelly), I am even more pressed to YELL this to a multitude that may not understand the cost of allowing today’s unhealthy paradigms to remain unchecked!”
… Angry, agitated and seemingly on top lyrically form. As erratic as this feels, it’s comforting to know that Ms Hill still has grasp of her talent. Given the statement above the songs sense of haste is forgivable and actually, within this context – kind of works.
Rising enigma Twigs follows up her self-titled debut EP released late last year with a new gothic ballad titled ‘How’s That’. The songs industrial operatics can be instantly likened to the pioneering works of artists like Björk or Portishead, but Twigs’ delicate future-pop resolution and fragile vocal ensure that her presence is felt throughout; The songs spectral video is a treat too.
Earlier today Kanye West sparked huge excitement among fans when he tweeted the words “June Eighteen” on twitter. Speculation about what the cryptic date implied spread like wildfire; it was briefly confirmed by Elliott Wilson to be the release date for West’s follow up to 2010′s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy - but that was quickly retracted. Either way with little over a month to go until June 18th – it’s safe to assume we’ll have more Kanye news soon.
Jay-Z’s much anticipated contribution to ‘The Great Gatsby’ soundtrack has finally surfaced in full. ’100$ Bill’ will feature alongside new music from Lana Del Rey, Beyonce & Andre 3000, Emeli Sande, Coco O (Quadron), The xx and many others on the films upcoming soundtrack, executively produced by Jay.
Janelle Monae returns with a wonderfully stylised new video for her lead single ‘Q.U.E.E.N’ taken off her forthcoming second album The Electric Lady. Featuring soul’s high-priestess Erykah Badu, the track advances Monae’s exploration into afro-futurism, soul & funk. Perhaps not as complex as the orchestral suites and acid-soul overtures that made up The ArchAndroid, as a lead single ‘Q.U.E.E.N’ still makes a bold statement. It again demonstrates Janelle’s fearlessness when approaching music or rather the music industry. On paper and probably in practice too this ticks very few boxes from a major label stand point – not only does it not have an easy-on-the-ears, microwave-ready hook, it also stars two cult-followed avant-garde soul artists. Not exactly One Direction.
But for those impatiently waiting to see what Janelle Monae will evoke on The Electric Lady this should serve as a titillating preview. Because above all else this once again proves that neither Janelle Monae or Erykah Badu are from this planet.
After surprising fans with ‘Cole Summer’ yesterday, today J. Cole releases his brand new Truly Yours 2 EP. Produced by Cole, Canei Finch & Jake One the new EP features six new songs and boasts guest appearances from Bas, Young Yeezy & 2 Chainz. The tracks on the both instalments of his Truly Yours EP series are a product of J. Cole recording “at least 4 albums worth of material” while recording his upcoming second LP Born Sinner (June 25th). “Some of [the songs] are great and important stories that just won’t make the album (either they don’t fit sonically, don’t fit theme or there’s just not enough space… Tonight, I want to give you a few of these songs because you deserve them.
‘Drift’ is the first single released from Kiran Kai + Carla, a newly emerged production duo from South London who waste no time flaunting their smorgasbord influences. Of course this being 2013 means that little-to-no information on these guys (outside of their tumblr) is readily available, but from the get-go the track seems to say a lot about where they both are sonically. In many ways the airy guitar, blunted 808′s and crisp hi-hats (along with a gloriously positioned sax) feels like a 2013 ode to the forgone-but-much-loved soultronica movement that emerged out of L.A around ’08. Add to this the cultural significance of R&B over the past few years and the synthesis of Kiran Kai’s screwed raps against Carla’s sultry vocal (along with those velvety ad-libs) and you’re left with a very promising/exciting juxtaposition.
19-year old London-based newcomer Kenzie May makes a bold introduction with her debut single ‘Hide & Seek’; The thumping pop production recalls impressions of Santigold and AlunaGeorge, but Kenzie twerks everything enough to make it her own. Her confidence on ‘Hide & Seek’ is rousing and is precisely the thing that prevents her from being swallowed up by what is otherwise an elaborate and busy production. Turn this one up.
New York based production duo CREEP have finally announced the release of their first full-length album echoes. Scheduled to be released on August 13th their debut album will feature 10 songs including the previously released singles ‘You’, ‘Animals’, ‘Call Her’ & ‘Days’. Each song on the LP will feature a guest vocalist – expect collaborations from Sia, Romy Madley Croft (The xx), Alpines and Planningtorock who features on their awesome new single ‘Introduction’. The new track demonstrates everything there is to love about CREEP – it’s dramatic and bold, yet still manages to be delicate and emotive – listen below.
The tracklist for echoes can be found after the jump.
Following on from their 2012 album Driver, New York based production trio Lemonade waste no time putting out new material and return with a summery slice of electronic pop in the form of ‘Perfect Blue’. The groups new single picks up where Driver left off – it still carries the loosely positioned R&B connotations that filter through all their material, only this time everything feels a little more elaborate. Perfect blue-sky listening.