how crazy is this playlist? about as crazy as walking between tresidder and old union at 11:30 this morning. WOAH. WOAH. KEEP IT TOGETHER, TEAM. MACAULAY CULKIN AND MILES DAVIS ON THE SAME PLAYLIST.
VANCE JOY — Riptide — as described by chase porter
We’ve all been there or, at least, I imagine we have all been there because I know nothing outside of California—the coast on your left, rolled down windows, a rearview mirror dream catcher that has created more blind spots than it has caught dreams, your own messed up hair that you are actually lightweight concerned about, and a song that you are pretending to sing along to in the back of your friend’s step-mom’s Volvo. And, just as suddenly as the radio had changed from T-Swift to 2 Chainz, the radio loses its signal and everything goes quiet as you sing out “Hot tamale. I’m sweatin’, woo!” Suddenly, judgmental eyes fall upon you; to be honest, they are friendly eyes that you secretly hope have a crush on you but like, it’s no big deal if they are just eyes. And it’s funny, and it’s embarrassing, and it’s weird, and it’s sad that you thought a candy reference would be the main chorus of a rap song that is primarily about popping drugs.
This is this song. Not the drugs or candy or Trinidad James’ one hit; no, not even close. This song is driving down a coast and having “a lump in my throat ‘cause you’re going to sing the words wrong.” This song is about falling in love with those eyes. This song is so pure gold.
Also, if you are about that remix life, check out the FlicFlac Edit of Riptide. It’s awesome.
ISAIAH RASHAD – RIP Kevin Miller – as described by max wolff
As TDE’s newest signee, Isaiah Rashad has some pretty big shoes to fill. He describes his debut EP “Cilvia Demo” as vibey-music that you’ll either groove with or hate. I’ve heard him dismissed as a Kendrick sound-alike (???), but his line on “Soliloquy” sums up my personal opinion, “Dont put me on freshman covers, I’m posing with lunch”. “RIP Kevin Miller” is a way chiller version of an old Master P song, and my beat-to-death overplayed song of the week. Give ‘Cilvia’ a listen, see if your in the right camp on this.
ALEXI MURDOCH – Through the Dark – as described by silviana ilcus
In high school, I discovered the music of Nick Drake; a few hours and 40 fabulous songs later, he became my favourite artist. Never before had I heard music which had life so well distilled to its most authentic and beautiful; yet I sadly had to be content with the body of work already available, since Nick Drake’s been gone since 1974.
Earlier this year, however, I came across Alexi Murdoch while watching a television series whose name I am too embarrassed to disclose. While I appreciate Murdoch for much more than sounding like a contemporary Nick Drake, I must admit that’s what made me look up the soundtrack to the episode I was watching in the first place. “Through the Dark”, featuring Murdoch’s velvety Eddie Vedder meets Nick Drake-vocals, has a mesmerizingly sad, yet calm, tone yearning for an out-of-reach romance. It is almost 6 minutes long, yet feels unbound by a time interval. “Through the Dark” presents a singer-songwriter who takes his time to ponder. Even though Murdoch’s lyrics lack the poetry of Drake’s in “Through the Dark”, I forgive him that. As the quarter gets hectic, I overlook the importance of contemplation; “Through the Dark” charms me into pausing and remembering exactly that…
JUNGLE — Lucky I Got What I Want — as described by shannon wu
Start this week off smooth. With blues-inspired, chilled beats, this electrocrooning duo from London deserves some love.
JOE PURDY — I Love the Rain the Most — as described by rachel grau
Joe Purdy looks like a quintessential modern popular folk singer — look him up. Scruffy beard, always with fedoras/beanie/newsboy cap, suspenders, the whole lot. Anyways, this song is turning 10 this year, but I still can’t get over how perfectly it captures the moment of clarity and tranquility when it stops raining. Purdy describes a scene of rivers,boats, and docks, but the overall texture of the song can transport you to any place after an unrelenting storm finally ends. It’s soft, simple, and buoyant, like that moment you step outside and the streets are still wet, and everything seems so quiet. His songs always sound like poetry; he doesn’t sing so much as speak rhythmically, and it works so beautifully in this song with his guitar: “And we can jump in the river / don’t know if the water or sky is clearer / but I know that I love the rain the most / when it stops.” I’ve been waiting for the drought to end so this song would finally be relevant again (also so we don’t run out of water…) and this week, it finally did. Enjoy the rain!
BLACK PORTLAND (YOUNG THUG & BLOODY JAY)— Paranoia— as described by vilhelm
Young Thug’s having a big 2014. “Stoner” almost has 5 million views and gets my clicks in large part because of the rad-ass guitar sample that swings in and out. Nicki hopped on a remix to his hit song “Danny Glover” and proceeded to do ferocious Nicki-type things, further elevating Young Thug’s presence. (Quick aside: unlike Drake’s popular imitation verse on the remix to Migos’ “Versace,” Nicki sounds both perfectly at home and perfectly like Nicki on Danny Glover. “Goddamn, man, she’s beauty and the beast.”)
Recently, he dropped “Black Portland”, a wildly entertaining mixtape with affiliate Bloody Jay. Rap blogs are a-buzzin and not just because of the inexplicable and incredible title. These dudes just get weird as shit over a bunch of tuff production. Paranoia is their distorted version of a “we’re mean dudes” song over a classic snare rattling trap beat. I can’t say its the best song on the tape mostly because I don’t really know what the hell is happening on the tape. But I urge you, dear listener, to have fun with these stoners as they completely disregard all rap rules and regulations, opting instead to squawk and yap their way to the mythical land of Black Portland.
THE PIZZA UNDERGROUND – the pizza underground demo track – as described by adam schorin
If you are like me and you thought Macaulay Culkin vanished off the face of the earth after Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, then you, like me, thought very, very wrong. Culkin is back and he’s Culkinier than ever, this time fronting a pizza-themed Velvet Underground cover band: The Pizza Underground. This is their demo track, recorded live at Culkin’s house in November of last year, and it is the only thing I’ve been listening to for the last 15 minutes. It features such remakes as “Pizza Gal” (after “Femme Fatale”), “Papa John Says” (“Stephanie Says”), and “Take a Bite of the Wild Slice” (“Walk on the Wild Side”)—basically a bunch of Underground songs about pizza instead of sex and/or heroin (though that last one is technically a Lou Reed song, so, you know, watch out for that, Culkin). The lyrics are the work of a master, ranging from the witty and observational—“Comes from Domino’s, one, two, three/More than 30 minutes and that pizza is free” (“I’m Waiting for Delivery Man”)—to the truly visionary word-replacement of “It was such a Pizza Day,” in a cover of “Perfect Day” (another Lou Reed solo, just for the record). My personal favorite comes from “Wild Slice,” about a traditional pie-maker who learns to change her ways: “Pizza Hut said, ‘Girl you must/Throw some cheese in that crust.’” Of course, you’re just as well listing to the PU as background music while you work; you won’t pick up on the lyrical bon mots, but you will be wooed by the silky sounds of Phoebe Kreutz’s glockenspiel or Deenah Vollmer’s pizza box (which she hits, rhythmically). Either way, get listening—or, you know, take a bite of that wild slice.
CHRISTINE AND THE QUEENS – Wandering Lovers – as described by jeremy gilfor
It begins with cuckoos, and like an owl swooping down on her prey, Heloise Letissier, the French singer/songwriter who is Christine and the Queens, gobbles up her listeners in what I can only describe as 80s slow synth pop. “Wandering Lovers” is my favorite song off the Nuit 17 à 52 EP, maybe because it’s the type of song you can play twenty times in a row and it just feel like one big long song. It soars the whole time, staying ethereal and light, buoyed by Letissier’s Madonna meets Florence Welch warbling – are the lyrics in English? French? I think both? To be honest, it doesn’t matter. When the chorus comes on I start bouncing around wherever I am, and when it fades out, my finger’s already over the repeat button.
LIL UGLY MANE — On Doing An Evil Deed Blues — as described by chuck allen
Who is Shawn Kemp? Not many people know, but from what I’ve gathered from his music and the random blocks of text he occasionally throws up on Facebook, he might be the best living embodiment of hip-hop I’ve come across. (Editor’s Note: Shawn “Reign Man” Kemp was also a great player for the late ‘90’s and early ‘00’s Seattle Sonics and Cleveland Cavaliers, two now-defunct NBA teams.)
Bold statement, I know, but a lot of people forget how hip-hop started – it was something that most people could only hear on Friday afternoons through Yo! MTV Raps. It was underground, the black sheep of music, a do-it-yourself genre that didn’t have rules or formulas for being great. Something that existed on tape decks and analog recorders of people who got their substance from the vinyl that they grew up on. Lil Ugly Mane took hip-hop back to its roots on a level way deeper than these New New York rappers with their multi-syllable flows over 90s-loops-plus-boom-bap. From the pen-and-pixel album art, to using home recordings that he found in thrift stores, to recording on old radio-shack mic’s with socks as pop filters… Kemp isn’t worried about “art.” And he’s not following precedents for the sake of dead presidents, he’s creating for the sake of it.
A couple months ago Kemp announced that he was done making hip-hop. This is the song he dropped shortly after. Kemp spits like it’s his last verse, condemning the business that hip-hop is becoming, and reminiscing on how he heard God through a tape deck. It might take a while before the tinny hi-hats and distorted effects become white noise to your ears rather than an annoyance, but once they do, there’s an entirely different song underneath. Slow guitar riffs, ghostly vocal samples, and an earnest flow that puts a lot of music we listen to in perspective.
“Cause we move ahead every thirty seconds, so how’s it been thirty years and all we fuckin’ rap about is weapons?”
LCD SOUNDSYSTEM — I Can Change (London Sessions Version) — as described by jake friedler
I’ve been a fan of LCD Soundsytem ever since the third minute of “Dance Yrself Clean” caught me completely off guard, and an even bigger fan of James Murphy ever since I heard his idea to create beautiful music from the turnstiles in New York subways. LCD Soundsystem played their legendary last show in Madison Square Garden three years ago, and it’s always made me sad to think that, barring a reunion at Coachella 2030 that would probably feel a little strained for everybody involved, I’ll probably never see them play live. So I was extra stoked when a friend linked me to their London Sessions, a “live-in-studio” album that the band recorded in 2010. Every song on the record will sound exciting and new for fans of the group, but I’m especially in love with this reinterpretation of “I Can Change.” Its rhythm is slower; its pleas, a bit more desperate. There is a strange doubling effect applied to the vocals, creating an ironic distance between the singer and his words that reminds me of the way James Joyce satirized himself by writing semi-autobiographical characters. Murphy takes self-deprecation to a whole ‘nother level, mocking his lyrics even as he sings them: “Love is an open book to a verse/of your bad poetry/and this is coming from me.”
POLICA — lay your cards out — as described by bojan srb
For God, Country, and Percocet.
BEACH BOYS – “Our Prayer” – as described by editor eric eich
This song gives me chills – good vibrations, even – and it’s hard for me to believe that the Beach Boys are the ones singing it. Disembodied and soothing, like a scalp massage from the gods, this song isn’t coming off repeat any time soon.
GOLDPANDA – Ballad of A Thin Man — as described by editor brittany newell
Myspace Still Exists and This is the Only Link
I have no idea who this band is, but their Dylan cover has a very Halloweentown, don’t-approach-the-white-van, creepers-writ-literal femme-house vibe that I am jiving with. If the original reminds me of a honky-tonk Western saloon, this reminds me of that same saloon in a Parisian dystopia. More like The Ballad of The Slender Man (of internet and Northern Michigan infamy). I can’t find any updated artist profile for GOLDPANDA but I am 90% sure I found the main guy’s facebook and he appears to have a Great Gatsby fixation. What’s not to get down with?
MILES DAVIS – Feio – as described by editor in chief lawrence neil
Do not listen to ‘Bitches Brew’ if you are writing a letter to someone you love. Listen to ‘Bitches Brew’ if you are violent and tense. yeah. RUN IT DOWN. RUN THE VOODOO DOWN.
photo source 1/2