This week everyone was talking about Lenny Kravitz and Jarred Leto's penis'. Yep, it's been a really (sh)long week and we've tried to keep ourselves concentrated the only way we know how - by dissecting and gathering the tunes. Turns out once we did that we realised there was actually a lot more going on this week than dick talk.
Autre Ne Veut
World War Pt.2
Arthur Ashin aka. Autre Ne Veut is gearing up to release the follow-up to his 2013 record Anxiety. The LP is set to be called Age Of Transparency and he's preceding it with the first single World War Pt. 2. The track is accompanied by a definitely NSFW video that features some pretty confronting scenes. The track itself is a brilliant, expanding electronic-cross-R&B cut not straying too far from what we heard on Anxiety.
We've waited four years for the follow-up of Jamie Woon's debut album Mirrorwriting but it seems it's finally on the way. This week we got the first track from Woon in a long, long while titled Sharpness. It's an effortlessly funky track that sits somewhere between D'Angelo and Miguel. Woon's voice is undeniable. So much so that even an acapella of this would be compelling.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/woon/sharpness[/soundcloud]
'Cause I'm A Man (Tame Impala Cover)
HAIM know exactly how to keep us in love with them. When they're not posting pictures with everybody's best friend Taylor Swift they're covering one of the best tracks of the year and nailing it. The latters comment refers to this cover of Tame Impala's 'Cause I'm A Man which in the hands of HAIM is transformed into a sensual, distorted track. There's something really sassy about hearing a girl sing Kevin Parker's already sarcastic lyrics and in many ways it actually works better than the original.
FKA twigs is gearing up to release an EP after a year of non-stop touring because she apparently doesn't know how to rest and stop being consistently brilliant. Figure 8 is taken from said EP and it's a far darker cut than anything that appeared on LP1. It's inspired by learning to vogue in New York and as such is has an effortless fluidity to it but is also twisted and experimental. Everytime you think twigs has reached her limit she expands her capabilities once again. Truly a once in a lifetime artist.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/alex-ia-5/fka-twigs-figure-8-zane-lowe-beats1-premiere-interview[/soundcloud]
Take It All Back
Melbourne-based artist Becky Freeman who goes under the moniker of Sui Zhen is gearing up to release her debut album Secretly Susan. Take It All Back is the second single from that record and it's a pristine electro-pop track channelling the sonic stylings of Grimes. The track is accompanied by a wonderfully kitsch video that features the album's namesake Susan - a blonde wig-wearing, disconnected character who, according to Zhen, is "someones digital doppelganger."
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/sui-zhen/sui-zhen-take-it-all-back[/soundcloud]
KH - BACK2THESTART
"Made this on a plane end of last year... not sure what I was thinking or why it exists," Four Tet tweeted as he released this track. KH - BACK2THESTART is not your usual Four Tet track so his confusion makes sense. It actually samples Cheryl Cole's Fight For This Love, pitching-down her verses and accompanying it with a woozy dance beat. For something that was made on a plane, it's pretty hard to fault.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/four-tet/kh-back2thestart[/soundcloud]
Chance The Rapper & Lil B
The Based God himself Lil B and Chance The Rapper have teamed-up for a freestyle mixtape and it's plain and simple one of the best hip-hop projects of the year. The whole of Free Based Freestyles needs to be heard but if we had to choose one track it would have to be the opener Last Dance. After his work with The Social Experiment it's so good to hear Chance rapping straight, particularly when it's over a delectable vocal sample.
A Knife In The Ocean
A Knife In The Ocean is the third track to be released from Foals' upcoming fourth album What Went Down. It's a cold, desolate sounding track that starts as one of the more sparse songs they've released so far and ends as one of the more epic. At nearly seven minutes, it's a test of endurance, made easy by the fact that it just gets bigger and bigger. Foals have really developed as a band and these tracks just keep showing it.
Olivia McCarthy aka. JOY. is probably one of the finest songstresses Australia has to offer and her ethereal new single About Us proves that again. It's a breathy jam that flicks between R&B and atmospheric electronica. Her crisp voice elongates itself throughout the whole thing, never sounding stressed and always sounding effortless. "You know that I was too good for you," she sings at one point. Slay girls. Slay. It's taken from a new EP called Ode which will be out 28th August.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/joy-aus/about-us-1[/soundcloud]
We're right in the thick of winter right now here in Aus so it's good to hear someone who has been unaffected by the cold. Bamboo is the second single to come from homegrown producer Paces' Hold It Down EP and it's a sunshine-soaked, perky track. The title track of the EP featured Reija Lee but this one is a strictly instrumental affair. There's plenty of melodic vocal samples in there though to keep it bouncing along. It's refreshing to hear something like this at this time of year. Good vibes all round.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/pacesmusic/bamboo-2[/soundcloud]