We could say something about this being your weekend playlist but some of these are a bit sad so that's bollocks. They're all good though, the best of the week actually...
Cold To The Touch
Raffa Weyman, who goes by the name RALPH, is another golden find from Canada but unlike Drake and The Weeknd, she's making perky, '80s-flavoured pop music. Of all the Canadians she's most like Carly Rae Jepsen and just like E.MO.TION, Cold To The Touch is a gorgeous slice of throwback pop. It may be a breezy song but the lyrics are all about palming off love and that's a much easier task when you're backed by a danceable beat and funky guitars.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/songsbyralph/cold-to-the-touch[/soundcloud]
9. Set Mo
Comfort You (Feat. Fractures)
Sydney duo Set Mo are back with their first cut of the year Comfort You, featuring the vocals of Melbourne singer Fractures. It might be the most melancholic song they've released but as always it's driven along by a euphoric house beat with all roads leading to a triumphant chorus. Fractures is the perfect vocalist for them bringing the same sort of emotion that Deutsche Duke did to last year's hit White Dress.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/setmomusic/set-mo-comfort-you-ft-fractures[/soundcloud]
Numb & Getting Colder (Feat. KUČKA)
Flume roped in some massive names for his second album Skin so it's slightly amusing that the best contribution comes from perhaps the album's smallest name, KUČKA. KUČKA's sweet, alien voice melds with Flume's industrial stylings so effortlessly and it's a blessing for this record that the pair of them found eachother. Numb & Getting Colder is, as the title would suggest, a cold track but KUČKA adds a much needed warmth to it. It sounds futuristic and yet it's so accessible and melodically strong.
7. Jorja Smith
Where Did I Go
Where Did I Go might be the most moveable cut Jorja Smith has dropped yet. It’s driven by her soulful, Lauryn Hill-leaning vocals but there’s a classy beat that runs beneath made to be moved to. While it sounds unmistakably like 2016, you can tell she knows the roots of R&B/soul and pays tribute to them appropriately in all her music. She’s only 18 and she has a massive future ahead of her. If she keeps up this standard, she could be one of the most important voices in new music.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/jorjasmith/where-did-i-go[/soundcloud]
Nao has finally announced that her debut album For All We Know will be out 28th July and this week she teased us with a track from the record Girlfriend. Girlfriend is a slinky, effortlessly funky tune that Nao has labelled “wonky funk”. It’s a style she’s conceived herself by reinterpreting her favourite artists like Prince and Michael Jackson in a way better suited for 2016 and beyond.
House On A Rock
Ngaiire has been chipping away at music for a little while now but shooting straight from her excellent single Once she’s barely put a foot wrong and the stars are starting to align for her. House On A Rock is her latest and it’s a futuristic slice of soul that pairs her honey-soaked vocals with a consistently detouring instrumental. It’s thrilling, funky and warm all at the same time; the result of Ngaiire’s innovative vision which continues to explored the unexplored realms of soul music.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/ngaiire/04-house-on-a-rock-1[/soundcloud]
4. Ta-Ku & Wafia
Meet In The Middle
Future Classic label mates Ta-Ku and Wafia have teamed up numerous times in the past including on Wafia’s gorgeous debut single Heartburn but now they’re making their partnership official, releasing a full EP of collab material. Meet In The Middle is the first drop from that record and it sees the pair swapping verses. Ta-Ku has stepped up to take on vocal duties alongside Wafia and the pair meld beautifully together over the dusky, brooding beat.
wdubi (Feat. Nasty Mars and Marcus)
“I just love the sound of jazz,” the teenage rapper told us when we spoke to him last year and that comes through so loudly on this new Baro track wdubi. It’s peppered with horns that make it sound like he’s been in the studio with Chance The Rapper’s The Social Experiment. Instrumentally there’s a lot going on but he expertly navigates all the sound with clever, unwavering verses that are also packed with charisma. Nasty Mars and Marcus, who are also on the track, do an equally excellent job.
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/b-aro/wdubi[/soundcloud]
2. Charli XCX
God knows where this track has come from but it's leaked all over us from somewhere and thank goodness it has because it's glorious. It's a glitchy, sparkly pop track that sounds more like her debut album than Sucker. Still, it also has elements of her Vroom Vroom EP with SOPHIE so it could be new or old, who cares, it's a bloody good song. It's about throwing back bottles and generally having a raucous time which should be the mandatory subject of all pop songs.
What's It Gonna Be?
Shura‘s debut album Nothing’s Real will be in our hot hands very soon but for now she’s teased us with another new single What’s It Gonna Be? The track was premiered on BBC Radio 1 this week as the Hottest Record In The World and as per Shura’s usual standards it’s a smooth, effortless pop tune. It has a funky undertone to it that recalls some of HAIM’s more danceable moments.