Kehlani Chance The Rapper

Kehlani And Chance The Rapper Team Up For 'The Way'

Kehlani Chance The Rapper

Oakland RnB singer Kehlani is gearing up to release her LP You Should Be Here very soon (as in today) and now you can hear her collaboration with Chance The Rapper The Way. Chance has seemingly featured on 4000 songs this year already but it seems to be a case of quantity and quality because once again his verse on The Way is brilliant. Kehlani matches him 100 percent though with a verse that sees her voice sitting somewhere between Ciara and Tinashe. She's a confident vocalist and stabs at every accent with force giving a strength to the song. This album is going to be a killer.


First Impressions: Britney Spears, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Lido + More


First Impressions is an interns roundtable review of songs on their first (or second) listen. Each week we review six new songs from the past week, each giving them a score out of five and awarding our pick of the week. This week we pick apart tracks by Britney Spears, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Lido + More. 

Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Can’t Keep Checking My Phone

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Sam: I love that UMO have really expanded their sound. I loved II but at times it felt a little insular and restricted. Both this and Multi-Love have been a huge step forward and the album will most likely also continue this way. Can’t Keep Checking My Phone sounds like it would be right at home on a Blood Orange record - It’s got that minimal percussion loop with the funky guitars on top. As always though it’s the textured falsetto of Ruban Nielson that wins me over. 4

Bianca: The beginning transports me to a ‘70s crime detective TV show, which usually isn’t a good place to be, but in this circumstance sets the scene for a funky, hip-shaking, joyous tune. UMO keep offering multi-layered, instantaneously-enjoyable experiences and judging by Multi-Love and now Can’t Keep Checking My Phone, no detective work is required to realise that their upcoming album is going to deliver the goods. 4.5 Bianca's Pick 

Zanda: So much to unpack here that it’s hard to know where to start. The catchy vocal melodies are complimented superbly by that bass riff which sounds it has its origins in some seriously old school funk, and the sparing use of synth throughout is tasteful. The best aspect for me though, has to be that crazy percussion line; some sort of weird and wonderful mixture of clapping, sound effects, tambourine, and so much more. An absolute cracker. 4.5 Zanda’s Pick

Love Again

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Sam: Ta-Ku has always had a few gospel flavours in his tracks but on this one he’s really gone all out and it works. JMSN’s vocal is an absolute killer throughout and Ta-Ku’s minimal production creates plenty of space for JMSN to work his magic. Personally, I would’ve enjoyed if Ta-Ku built the climax a little more, perhaps worked in some chords on an organ, Lido-style but there’s also a certain subtlety in not doing that which feels dignified. With or without, it’s a beautiful, flourishing production. 3

Bianca: *prayer hands emoji* The choir, combined with the piano and strings appearances, gives Love Again a gospel quality without being garish and over-the-top. The instrumental outro really makes it for me; the thumping kicks giving a taste of what was possibly missing from the rest of the song. Reading through Soundcloud, I found the comment: “This is cool just sent it to my ex who I miss alot (sic)”. Usually I wouldn’t recommend that but maybe this track might just give him a shot at redemption. 3

Zanda: I find myself pondering how Ta-Ku hasn’t really skyrocketed in popularity in the last few years. I guess part of the charm of his music it’s exactly what he wants to make and doesn’t cater to the masses. This is an incredibly soulful tune featuring some incredible acapella-esque vocals. Tasteful production underpins it, and it’s the sort of minimal but necessary style of production that Ta-Ku is known for. 3.5

Major Lazer
Powerful (Feat. Ellie Goulding/Tarrus Riley)

Sam: I have to preface this with I am going to be bias because I love Ellie Goulding’s voice so much that I would bathe in even her weakest songs. It goes without saying that the my favourite parts of this track is Goulding’s verses. It’s nice to hear her over a reggae-styled beat rather than Calvin Harris’ usual onslaught of synths. For me, this sounds like Major Lazer really trying to slip into the mainstream. First there was the politeness of Lean On and now this and good on them for trying to get on radio while still maintaining their signature aesthetic. Powerful is their strongest to date and the star-power of Goulding along with Riley’s catchy chorus will serve them well. 3.5

Bianca: Gamble on Major Lazer and you’re sure to win. They always manage to make the featured artist shine (hell, they even made me like a song that features Ariana Grande) and this time round is no exception; Ellie’s voice is delightfully chirrupy as usual and Tarrus’ contribution balances it with a bit of grunt. It’s not the most complex of tracks but it is Powerful enough to make you sit up and listen. 3.5

Zanda: Diplo has come out recently and said that he is planning on doing less work as ‘Diplo’, and with a host of other projects under his direction including Major Lazer it’s not too hard to see why. With the recent release of Lean On, and now with this new track, it’s clear that the master producer and collaborator is taking this venture outside the realms of banging dance anthems exclusively and venturing into new areas. Ellie Goulding is typically and undoubtedly brilliant as usual. 3.5

Gosh Pith

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Sam: After hearing so much clean electronic, RnB music in recent years I’m very into the idea of reverb-soaked melodies slipping back into fashion. Gosh Pith are just the start of what I think will be a very big movement of music that sounds like this. As always the original purveyor is the best and Child is excellent. It kind of doesn’t go anywhere but it has this subtle appeal which revolves around the soulful vocal. It’s a vocal that you wouldn’t expect to slot into an instrumental like this. At first I was expecting something more skewed towards Sleigh Bells but was pleasantly surprised. I’m charmed by this. 4

Bianca: Totally read their name as ‘Goth Pit’ at first glance so was expecting a very different song to come out of my headphones. Instead, I was pleasantly surprised to be serenaded by this lullaby-eque, ambling track. It’s subdued though still holds an unfinished grittiness that prevents it from being tedious. The vocal-run, “I said I got out of there sooner now” also shakes things up, almost tripping over itself and waking the track up from its cozy slumber. 4

Zanda: A very relaxed and guitar-riff happy tune from the Detroit-based group. I actually really enjoy the refreshing use of triple time in kind of a shuffle feel, as a nice break from all other music at the moment being in 4/4. Echoey vocals add to this relaxed feel… a great track for a chiller weekend. 3

Planes (Lido and The Social Experiment Remix)

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Sam: Another week, another Chance The Rapper feature or remix that isn’t actually a Chance The Rapper song 🙁 Based off this I would love to see Lido and The Social Experiment working together more often.

Lido’s instrumentals always oscillate between the minimal and the dense and Chance’s vocal always sounds best when it’s given plenty of space to exist in. Together it’s an interesting combination. Anyway, I’m not ignoring the fact that this is actually a Jeremih remix.

The original of Planes was good but this is just so much more interesting. In fact I actually completely forgot Planes existed until now. I have a feeling I won’t be forgetting this one though. 4

Bianca: This version makes for a much more exciting event in comparison to the original. You can immediately hear Lido's contribution to the track, in all of its flickering, blossoming goodness. Chance's appearance, with all his Willy Wonka references, is almost humorous and kinda strange, but after listening to it a couple of times I understand its necessity. 3.75 

Zanda: Jeremih and Chance The Rapper are typically smooth in this, but the real star for me is Lido and his unique style of production. He brings his own brand of melodic synths to everything he does, and this track has that typical Lido polish to it. He uses space and sparse textures to captivate his audience and leave you wondering what’s coming next after moments of almost complete silence. 4

Giorgio Moroder 
Tom’s Diner (Feat. Britney Spears)

Sam: I actually think Britney Spears can be really brilliant when she strays away from regular pop. There was a song on her Circus record called Unusual You which I still listen to know because it was so irregular for her but also had some really interesting production on her voice. Tom’s Diner sounds nothing like that but it does go with something more interesting than your regular Britney. The production here brings out the best in her usually paper-thin voice.

The whole idea of Giorgio Moroder and Britney Spears doing a Suzanne Vega cover is utterly ridiculous but for some equally ridiculous reason it works. The Sia song was just way too cheesy. This one is cheesy but it’s also got a sleek quality in the way it carefully treads between disco and the club. Who would have thought that a 70-something year-old could bring out the best in Brit. I can’t get enough of this. Ditch Iggy Azalea and create a whole album with Moroder please Britney. 4.5 Sam’s Pick

Bianca: This track oscillates delightfully between 'lol' and head bopping acceptance. At first listen, the 'doo doo' intro was almost laughable, but soon Giorgio's brilliant production shined through and Britney-fuelled nostalgia took over, making me it. The lyrics are so damn literal, by no fault of Britney or Giorgio, but I suppose that adds to its charm. It's all very odd that this was the song of choice for their collaboration but I'm glad they did it. 

Zanda: It’s weird how Giorgio Moroder’s work as part of Daft Punk’s latest LP seems to have thrust him back into the spotlight, or at least reclaimed the attention of popular music’s biggest stars. This track doesn’t do much for me to be honest, although the production value is undoubtedly high. I can’t quite pinpoint what aspects of it I don’t particularly like, maybe if Britney attempted less pronounced humming and there was more actual lyrical material. 1.5

Now time for your vote: 

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If you feel the need to abuse us for our opinions, you can reach some of this week’s writers below:

Content Director: Sam
Managing Director: Bianca
Contributor: Zanda


10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Major Lazer, Ta-Ku, Wet + More

Another week dominated by Kanye West. When he's not jumping in lakes in Armenia, he's stealing The Weeknd's limelight at Coachella and inducting himself into the TIME Power 100. In honour of another week in which Kanye nabbed a headline a day, we present to you a 10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week with no mention of Kanye. Apart from this bit where we've mentioned his name three times. Seems we can stop travelling West. Time to head South and explore the best songs from the week below.


Brooklyn three-piece Wet are set to be one of the most talked about acts of the year. Their debut EP Dreams, released last year, was brilliant and we're hoping that their debut album, revealed to be called Don't You, will be even better. The first single off that record is Deadwater and it's one of their strongest tracks to date. Vocalist Kelly Zutrau sounds unbelievable over a washy, subtle instrumental. She hooks you in from the first second and after that the song just glides past, time seemingly standing still.

Love Again (Feat. JMSN and Sango)

Ta-Ku has quietly become one of the best Australian producers doing the rounds but it feels like this latest EP, set to be released via Future Classic, will really propel him to the front of people's mind. That said EP is called Songs To Make Up To and the first single is called Love Again. Love Again is Ta-Ku taking it to church with a piano instrumental complimented beautifully by JMSN's soulful vocal. It's without a doubt the most uplifting thing that Ta-Ku has done and while it's not traditionally designed for the club, we can imagine this really being a moment if someone snuck it into a set.

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Unknown Mortal Orchestra
Can't Keep Checking My Phone

Unknown Mortal Orchestra have made great albums in the past but it feels like he's really making a conscious effort in the lead-up to LP3 to appeal to a wider-audience. First single and title track Multi-Love was his most accessible pop track to date and the follow-up Can't Keep Checking My Phone is just as immediately likeable. It's a densely melodic, funky number that even manages to slip in synths in the bridge. It's the closest thing we're going to get to a euphoric UMO pop number and we'll happily take it.

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Hold Me

Brisbane producer cln. put out a few excellent tracks last year but it really feels like he's hit his stride with this latest one Hold Me. Not only do we get to hear him sing but we also get to hear him take on a more melancholic aesthetic. As sad as the melody may be, the synths and the lyrics are basically like a warm, electronic hug. If he continues to head in this direction we have every bit of confidence that he will be one of Australia's best electronic producers.

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Jordan Bratton
Prisoner (Feat. Chance The Rapper)

Chance The Rapper is a great drawcard. Every track he features on gets an immediate listen from us but in this case New York vocalist Jordan Bratton completely holds his own against Chance. Prisoner is a soulful, spacious track with some beautiful harmonies. Chance jumps on the track in the second half for a half-sung, half-rapped verse that is inline with a lot of the stuff he's been doing with The Social Experiment. Prisoner is taken off Bratton's forthcoming EP Youth.

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Major Lazer
Powerful (Feat. Ellie Goulding & Tarrus Riley)

Major Lazer have always had a cult following but this time around it seems that they are reaching for the mainstream. First was their collaboration with Mo which has shot up the charts here in Australia and now their collaboration with Ellie Goulding has surfaced. It's undoubtedly the most radio-friendly thing they have ever produced but that doesn't mean they have sold out. It still has the heavy-bass Major Lazer aesthetic that Diplo and co have mastered over the years. Reportedly Diplo is leaving behind his solo work to focus on Major Lazer and it may be a good decision considering the gold they have been churning out of late.


Melbourne via Brisbane producer RKDA, is a newcomer to the Australian electronic scene. Meta is her debut tracks and it's a dark, experimental piece that pegs her as an artist not shy to get a little introspective. This is the kind of music that is born in the early hours of the morning. It's haunting and unsettling but also expansive in the way that it layers up instrumentally in the latter parts of the song. We'll take some more of this please, RKDA, don't make us wait too long.

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We waxed lyrical about VÉRITÉ's last single Wasteland and we're going to do it yet again with this one, Colors. There's so much electronic, singer/songwriter music floating around at the moment but what makes VÉRITÉ different is her full-bodied voice which makes you sit up and listen immediately. It's not wispy and gentle, it's the type that needs dense instrumentals and sturdy melodies to give it wings. Colors does exactly that with a bolstered chorus that really allows VÉRITÉ to show of her killer voice.

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Dej Loaf
U Me & Hennessy (Feat. Lil Wayne)

When Lil Wayne jumps on your track you better believe that you're something special. We pegged Dej Loaf as an artist to watch in 2015 and we've been consistently proved right. Me U & Hennessy is a downbeat masterpiece with Loaf slurring from one line to the other with an enviable effortlessness. At first Lil Wayne doesn't seem like the right fit for Loaf's brand of rap but he actually delivers one of his best verses in a few years, his scratchy voice perfectly complimenting Loaf's serene tones.

Lianne La Havas

Lianne La Havas' debut album was so good that she made friends with Prince. That statement alone should make it well-worth looking forward to her sophomore album but we'll let her music do the speaking for now. Unstoppable is the first taste of new album Blood which will grace us with its presence in July. It's a cruisy, Erykah Badu-style number which beautifully showcases La Havas' coffee-soaked tones. She's one of the only artists that could easily occupy a five minute space without any big tricks. Her voice just wraps around the melody and carries you with it.

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...of course we're joking about Kanye. Here's Good Life. What a #banger.


5 Songs You Shouldn't Miss Today


There were a flood of tracks that came out today. From Kanye to Action Bronson to our very own Courtney Barnett, it seems that March is the month everybody has picked to drop new material. We didn't want the day to go by with you all missing out on what's on offer so we thought we'd package them all here for you convenience. Your welcome.

EDIT: As I was writing this Cashmere Cat dropped a new song. SRSLY WTF IS UP WITH TODAY.

George Maple
Where You End And I Begin (Feat. Grande Marshall)

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You know an Aussie artist is good when she can stand out on a day when some of the biggest names in music drop new tracks. Future Classic's latest hope George Maple has today delivered us Where You End And I Begin and detailed the tour she's set to embark on. The new track is giving us strong throwback Mariah Carey vibes with sultry synths complimented by Maple's airy vocal. It's the first time the singer has channelled more of an RnB vibe than a brooding electro-pop aesthetic and it works completely. The addition of rapper Grande Marshall is a nice touch too.

Action Bronson
Baby Blue (Feat. Chance The Rapper)

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"Action Bronson is really one of my favourite people out there making music so we did a couple songs and one of them I think is going to be the next single," Mark Ronson told triple j last month and voila, here it is. This is basically a dream-team of the hottest things around right now and rightfully so it sounds brilliant. It's probably the most explicitly melodic thing we've heard from Mr. Wonderful yet and we can thank Chance The Rapper's oddly soulful hook for that. Ronson ensures that the production is modern while being exquisitely classic - horns included.

Cashmere Cat
Adore (Feat. Ariana Grande)

Life is all about creating and returning favours and that's exactly what Cashmere Cat and Ariana Grande have learnt. Cashy produced Be My Baby on Grande's latest record and now she has contributed vocals to his track Adore. The pair of them together are like Ilana and Abbi from Broad City in that they are a match made in heaven and nothing will ever come between them <3 This will probably appear on Cashmere Cat's debut album if he has time to release it in between becoming the world's biggest pop producer and all.

Courtney Barnett

So, Courtney Barnett is basically our biggest export right now. She's gearing for the release of her debut album Sometimes I Sit and Think, and Sometimes I Just Sit at the end of this month and the internet is lapping up the news. Depreston follows the first single Pedestrian At Best and demonstrates a distinctly different tone. On Pedestrian she was like a steam-roller but her she far more gentle, melancholic even. She's also about to head out on a world tour which she's no doubt going to kill so good for her.

Ratchet Commandments

Chicago rapper Tink has been chipping away at the scene for a while but it seems she's ready to officially arrive. She's been working with mega-producer Timbaland and this is one of the cuts the pair have worked on together. The beat has an undeniable funk to it whilst just bubbling under Tink's cocky vocal. If anything, it's taking us back to Tim's work with Missy Elliot back in the day. Tink establishes a clear voice from the get-go with an effortless flow that manages to create moments of gasping excitement. 2015 is going to be the year when Tink hits the big time and it may be the first artist in a long time that Timbaland has introduced to the mainstream.


10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Madonna, Young Fathers, Angel Haze + More


This is, completely unintentionally, the most sensual 10 songs we’ve ever put together. There are plenty of bedroom jams, RnB stunners and sultry pop songs and we’re not sure whether it’s because that’s all that was released this week or because we’ve been selective because we’re in some sort of smutty mood. Either way, we can’t help but feel now we’ve peaked a week too soon. This would have been perfect for V Day.

Young Fathers- Rain Or Shine

Glasgow group Young Fathers would be feeling pretty happy with themselves right now. And that’s absolutely deserved. They won the Mercury Prize for their excellent record Dead and are now wasting no time in getting on with the next one. It’s a sense of immediacy that The Avalanches, D’Angelo and Guns N’ Roses never quite grasped. Rain Or Shine sounds like a carnival ransacked by a gang. Its perky yet distinctively dark with a carnivale synth slaughtered by a thumping back beat. It’s from the album White Men Are Black Men Too which will come into existence in early April.

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Shy Girls- Arrest (Feat. Tei Shi)

And herein commences the love-making section of 10 songs for this week. You may have heard Portland-based singer Shy Girls lay his voice down on tracks by ODESZA and Cyril Hahn in the past few years, but his solo work is equally impressive. Arrest is taken from a mixtape title 4WZ and it’s an after-dark, sweltering mid-tempo. Mid-tempo duets make my heart skip a beat and when Tei Shi joins on the second verse all self-control is lost. You can download the rest of the mixtape here which I highly recommend you do.

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Unknown Mortal Orchestra- Multi-Love

Unknown Mortal Orchestra’s Ruben Nielson was one unhappy man on his last record II. Despite being lonely, however, the record was delicious melodic and quaint. On the title-track from the forthcoming record, Multi-Love, he sounds considerably happier. And what does happiness sounds like? It sounds like less reverb, stomping pop-inspired percussion and sunshine-induced choruses.

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Madonna- Iconic (Feat. Mike Tyson and Chance The Rapper)

I never thought I’d be writing about Mike Tyson in the same sentence as a new song but here goes. Madonna has released a new song and it features Mike Tyson alongside Chance The Rapper. The good news is Tyson barely even attempts to rap. The bad news is Madonna does. It’s not as bad as it sounds though. She basically does a lot of rambling about sweat and tears and makes a whole lot of boxing innuendo before she gets on with it and bursts into a massive, trap-inspired chorus. It’s worth sticking around for Chance too if you can make it that far.

Say Lou Lou- Nothing But A Heartbeat

After what seems like decades of waiting, Swedish sisters Say Lou Lou are finally releasing their debut album, Lucid Dreaming. With that announcement this week came a new song called Nothing But A Heartbeat which is another sprawling, magnificent pop song that only Swedes could manage. Where their last release, Games For Girls, plodded along with an effortless cool, Nothing But A Heartbeat is more a combustion of emotion. Both work for us.

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Angel Haze- CANDLXS

We already raved about this Angel Haze song earlier in the week so we won’t take up too much of your time here. Basically CANDLXS is the first song off Haze’s forthcoming release TFBAN. According to Haze herself this is about the fifth best song on the record which has us insanely excited (that was no doubt her intention and possibly a lie but we’ll give her the benefit of the doubt). CANDLXS shits over most of the stuff on her debut album because its unmistakably an Angel Haze song. As she oscillates between singing and rapping you get the feeling no other rapper could manage this.

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Migos- One Time

After a slew of mixtapes and random drops, rap collective Migos are finally gearing up their debut album Y.R.N. The Album. One Time is our first proper taste of that album and to be completely blunt if you don’t like hip-hop go to song nine. If you do like hip-hop, you’re going to love this. Basically they run through everything they’ve done just “one time” over a badass beat by Deko. The “one time” hook is enough to keep us interested while the verses are where the magic really comes. These guys are charismatic rappers and in shines through in droves.

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Raye- Flowers

Raye is the girlfriend everyone will want after hearing this. Flowers by London newcomer Raye is about how she doesn’t want flowers and doesn’t need to be given them. Over a confident, fierce beat, Raye takes the bull by the horns. “You don’t wanna know how many little guys I met like you”, she sings sending every guy to the corner of the club immediately. Props should and will be given to her flow on the verse which is impeccable.

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Obey City- Waterbad (Feat. Anthony Flammia)

I don’t like to ever say the word “jam” unless I’m talking about the condiment but I feel like it’s more than warranted here. NYC producer Obey City felt like the world needed a slow jam so he gave us one that sounds like a prototype of D’Angelo crossed with Maxwell and Frank Ocean. Anthony Flammia takes to the sexy beat with a sensual finesse, using his falsetto to induce weak knees. It’s from his Merlot Sounds EP which is due out 23rd February on LuckyMe.

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First Impressions: Chance The Rapper, Taylor Swift, Calvin Harris + more


First Impressions is an interns roundtable review of songs on their first (or second) listen. Each week we review six new songs from the past week, each giving them a score out of five and awarding our pick of the week. Today we pick apart tracks by Taylor Swift, Tkay Maidza, Chance The Rapper, Calvin Harris, Marina And The Diamonds & Marion Hill. 

Taylor Swift- Out of the Woods

Lizzie: We can’t say Taylor doesn’t mix it up a bit. This carries very much a Broods ‘Mother and Father’ sound for me - the running track style. I am a massive fan of her voice in this, and while it is yet another Taylor Swift break-up heartache track, I wouldn’t be totally embarrassed to blast this song from my car... in public. 3.5

Bianca: The first verse was actually quite easy on my ears, which is quite a departure from my usual feelings towards Tay Tay. And then...the chorus came. Like a yapping chihuahua that keeps nipping at your ankles, begging for attention, so is the effect of the continuous repetition of the mind-numbing lyrics. In saying that, overall, this song was as mildly enjoyable as reading its accompanying YouTube comments debating whether or not this was written about Harry Styles. 2.75

Sam: Goddamit. It was a big step for me to admit I was a fan of Shake It Off but two tracks in a row is ludicrous. This is good isn’t it? I think it is. It’s like a HAIM-inspired, slightly left-of-centre track that’s like nothing she’s really done before. The final bridge is a little bit over the top, but for all its repetition, the chorus is golden. Maybe I’m out of the woods. Maybe it’s finally time to admit I’m a Tay Tay fan :/ 3.5

Hannah: I am a big, BIG closet Taylor Swift fan. Think Narnia big. But I love her for all her poppy, catchy, pretween, sappy tendencies. This is just a little... Well it's a little too grown up for the pigeon hole I've put dear Taylor in. Yes it sounds like Broods. Yes it sounds like Haim. Yes it sounds like all those slightly left of field female artists making it big in the mainstream at the moment. Off the back of Shake it Off though, what's wrong with just sounding like Taylor? 3

Tkay Maidza- Switch Lanes

Lizzie: Tkay continues to shine her versatile young talent to the world! I love the flow/switch lanes in and out of singing and rapping -an almighty talent in itself. But I what I really like is the stripped-back style and noticeably tight production (by Paces), very unlike her usual hard bass-heavy beat. 4

Bianca: Aaaaand, Tkay has done it again. What a delightfully minimal track with just enough  sass and badassery to keep things interesting. The contrast between her trilling vocals and quick-witted roll of the tongue is a perfect marriage, creating a multi-faceted layer over Paces’ minimal, plonky, yet polished, production. 

Sam: I feel like a broken record gushing over Tkay but she’s really yet to put a step wrong. Switch Lanes gives us more of that bratty, attitude over a wonderfully spacious beat courtesy of Paces. I love how effortlessly she flips between singing and rapping. It makes me think she’s got the potential to have a crossover hit like Nicki Minaj did with Superbass.  4

Hannah: As far as interns darlings go, Tkay takes the cake.I have to admit however, I've never quite been as ready to board the Tkay train bound for stardom as the rest of the interns. Switch Lanes is changing that though. It's skillful and perfectly isolates between the sweet sounds of a new comer and bratty spits handled like a pro. All aboard! 3

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Chance The Rapper- No Better Blues

Lizzie: So Chance apparently hates a lot of things, we get it. From the opening of the track I thought this was going to be a bit more of an optimistic track, but no “it don’t get no better, it just don’t get no better.” I am feeling a little bit blue too now (sigh). 2

Bianca: Nothing like a bit of negativity to get me interested. After all of Pharrell’s Happy-ness and Taylor’s shaking off of the haters, finally Chance tells it like it is and lets loose with his take on the realities of life. Much like life, though, this track plods along but, unlike life, it doesn’t bear any exciting twists or turns. 2.5

Sam: Along with the Arthur cover, Chance has been getting pretty emotional lately and it works for him. For a song that starts every line with the same few words, it’s pretty profound. The beat never really alters but somehow Chance injects an infectious personality in with his spoken-word. He may hate everything, but I am very much a fan of this. 4

Hannah: Does anyone else find this song incredibly relaxing to listen to? Chance's spoken word is so melodic and perfectly paired with the intimate piano and bass-heavy backing track. I find myself kind of being lulled by this out pouring of hate. And hey, at least he hates hate, right? 4

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 Calvin Harris- Slow Acid

Lizzie: I may have to eat my words on this one. I have spent to year slamming Calvin Harris for his lack of originality and experimentation with any of his tracks of recent. Slow Acid is a definite departure from his usual stadium hit recipe. Something you would find at the end of a Bourne film - the slower pace, less bass heavy and noticeable lack of Florence and the Machine/ Rihanna is refreshing and hopeful for his LP release next month. Phew! 4

Bianca:  Well, this is certainly a new sound from ol’ Calvin. It’s a hectic, grungey track with a similarly-sounding name. I guess it’s a nice change of pace from the regular, textbook method of song structure and irritating guest vocalists that Calvin usually follows but I can’t help but find the entire package- the ‘rough’ video clip, the contrived name, the ‘90s trance-esque “Woo!” vocal sample- a little bit, for lack of a better word, lame. It just feels it was made for the purpose of soundtracking an anti-piracy commercial. “You Wouldn’t Steal A Car”... and I definitely won’t be stealing this song. 1.75  

Sam: I’m the first one to rat on a Calvo song, but I’m in two minds over this one. I do hate it, but that’s more of a personal taste. I do applaud that he’s finally doing something different that’s not so explicitly made so that more dollar signs rain on him. But then again, I don’t praise every album for having a second track that sounds different to the first so I’m just gonna go right ahead and place this here: 2

Hannah: In terms of the typical Calvin sound, sure let's call this track experimental and ok, we can even bandy around the phrase underground. In terms of the rest of the EDM catalogue or history of dark beat dance tracks, let's just say YAWN! Calvin's experimental track sounds remarkably like The Matrix soundtrack. 2

Marina and the Diamonds- Froot

Lizzie: Oh my word this is a long track. I am eerily attracted to Marina’s voice, but I thought I was listening to Eurovision for a second there! I do not really see the reason to push past the 5-minute mark. ‘Froot’ is a bit of a marathon if you ask me. 3.5

Bianca: Marina really makes us work for the chorus (which doesn’t come in until around the 1:20 mark) but the fructose-laden result is certainly worth it. Her gooey, honey-like voice drawls in the most positive of ways over the groovin’ bassline and jazzy melody. This one’s going straight to the fruit bowl. Bianca's Pick 

Sam: If nothing else, I’ve always been a fan of Marina’s chorus’. She doesn’t go in all guns-blazing ever, rather subtly weaving in melodies with that drawling voice. On Froot, we really have to work to get the chorus. It feels like 17 verses before it finally arrives, but my goodness is it worth it. Those funky guitars roll-in and she just climbs up that vocal ladder, ever so slightly. Props for the title too. Too often is the power of ironic spelling ignored. 4.5 Sam's Pick 

Hannah: Hey Chance, how do you feel about adding the line "I hate Marina and The Diamonds and ironic pronunciations of 5 letter words," to your list of grievances? 1

Marian Hill- Got It

Lizzie: This performance offers up a little taster-plate of swagger, hip-hop sass, quirky production and raw vocal talent. I haven’t heard something like this smooth in a long time - oh and the sax is perfectly placed, that’s my favourite! 4 Lizzie’s Pick

Bianca: Samantha's gossamer voice is the winner here, truly shining when paired with jangly cymbals and a pulsating backdrop. Once the trilling brass comes in, I’m immediately transported into a smokey club in the '40s. Getting plenty of sultry Jessica Rabbit vibes from this. 3.5 

Sam: Love the almost-tinny, throbbing bass on this one. It would be nothing though if it wasn’t for the vocal personality of Samantha Gongol. The heights she reaches at some points is pretty breathtaking. That weird instrumental break helps it sound like a far more tasteful version of Jason Derulo’s Wiggle which is nice. I have been asking for that this year. 3.5

Hannah: This is as irresistible as a promising bowl of the richest chocolate cake mix and equally as seductive. Just try to say no. I love the bounce, the clap, the vocal acrobatics, the instrumental break and the bass. This ticks so many of the right boxes. 4 Hannah's Pick 

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10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week


For those of you still coping with post-Splendour depression, you're not alone. As such we’ve made sure we’ve included no Splendour 2014 acts in this week's 10 Songs You Need To Hear so you can deal with it in the best way possible- denial.

Azealia Banks- Heavy Metal and Reflective

It’s been a damn long time since Azealia Banks became the most hyped rapper of 2012 with 212. In that time she’s fought every other artist on the planet, chucked dummy spits at shows and parted ways with her record label Universal. Heavy Metal and Reflective is the first we’ve heard from her since the split and it’s a bit of alright. She’s aggressive and confident over an industrial beat that is a bit of a runaway train.


FKA Twigs - Pendulum

Pendulum is the second track to come from FKA Twigs’ forthcoming record LP1 and is further proof that it will be one of the best of the year. As the title suggests it’s a gently undulating track bound by cascading beats and sporadic vocals. There are definitely similarities between this one and Water Me although this one feels like it’s got more melody to attach itself too. Go home everyone, Twigs wins 2014.

Laura Welsh- Bound

It’s hard to believe, given the attention it’s received, that Kanye’s Bound 2 never received any chart love. Even stranger when you think that Sigma’s drum n’ bass version of it, Nobody To Love, has commercial radio in raptures. One version that will rightfully have you in raptures is this cover by Laura Welsh. Taking the main hook, she transforms Bound into a smokey, love song that’s perhaps one of the most poignant things she’s done to date.


Lil Silva- Don’t You Love (Feat. BANKS)

BANKS and Lil Silva have already worked with each other on several occasions, the most successful being BANKS’ Goddess. This dark, skittering Lil Silva cut provides the perfect playground for BANKS to lay down her brooding vocals. We don’t get to hear her though until the last third with a vocal sample occupying much of the earlier stage, helping it remain more of a Lil Silva song than a BANKS one.


Thrupence- Don’t You Mind

Future Classic has their finger on the pulse when it comes to snapping up the best electronic talent cc: Flume, Jagwar Ma or Wave Racer. It comes as welcome news then that they’ve snapped up 23 year-old maestro, Thrupence. Don’t You Mind comes from his debut album Lessons which will be his first release on Future Classic. It samples blues singer Son House’s Grinnin In Your Face, laying it atop a retro hip-hop beat that shows Thrupence’s clearly extensive music knowledge and his finessed production.


Black Vanilla - Smacks

Black Vanilla is a Sydney-based supergroup of sorts. It's made up of Marcus Whale (Collarbones), Lavurn Lee (Guerre) and Jarred Beeler (Mareseilles) and separately they've released some pretty spectacular material. As a trio, however, they offer up something very different- RnB/Hip-Hop flavoured tunes that are arguably more straight-forward than any of their solo material. Case in point, their new track, Smacks. Smacks really have one intention- to make people dance- and it does so effortlessly. Beginning with what could be confused as a banjo it enters territory of deep, throbbing bass with a voice saying "are you willing to give in". It harks back to the days of Beastie Boys and Basement Jaxx and is a fresh take on the 90s nostalgia genre.


Fantastic Fantastic - Houses

This is the second song to feature from funk-pop duo since Never Enough and it further verifies Fantastic Fantastic as a fun, bright addition to the world of music. Sunny synths and licking guitars combined with softly-spoken, rapid vocals force you to take those firmly-planted feet right off the floor.


cln - Dayum

Brisbane-born cln (formerly known as Callan Alexander) set tongues and ears wagging back when his EP’s lead single, Better Than, reached no.1 on Hype Machine in the matter of days. cln has now released his entire Sideways EP, with Dayum as one of the unheard singles. The track is peppered with Oriental-inspired instruments, held together with lulling synths with your focus broken every now and then by the almost-unwelcome vocal: ‘Dayum!’


Chance The Rapper- Wonderful Everyday: Arthur

Probably the biggest treat of the week was this flip of the Arthur theme song by Chance The Rapper. He’s been playing it at a few live shows but this recorded version which pulls in Jessie Ware and Wyclef Jean is definitely more affecting. It treads through gospel, hip-hop and soul ending with a stomping beat that takes it straight to church. You’d be forgiven for shedding a nostalgic tear or two.


Diplo & Alvaro - 6th Gear (feat. Kstylis)

Ready to get a little bit low with a bit of dutty dancing? Self-proclaimed ‘random white dude’ Diplo, this week released a mixtape of his most popular singles, remixes and a few new ones as well. 6th Gear is one of those new ones and sees Diplo traverse trap and dancehall genres. It’s all a bit chaotic as you would expect from a Diplo track erring more towards Major Lazer’s style.


And one more for good luck (...and because we can't count)

Porter Robinson - Flicker

Porter is once again showing is love for all things Japanese on Flicker, the fourth track to be released from Worlds. A Japanese sample is sliced atop an epic, cinematic instrumental that is synth-heavy, bass-heavy and altogether climatic. It sounds a bit like the final challenge of a video game and as such rounds out our 10 songs for this week in fine style.



Hear Chance The Rapper re-work the Arthur theme song into 'Wonderful Everyday: Arthur'

"Chance The Rapper"’s avatar

Chance The Rapper has been performing the theme song of Arthur live for a while now but today he's set free a recorded version titled Wonderful Everyday: Arthur. He's pulled in a couple of high profile guests to help him too with Jessie Ware and Wyclef Jean among the extra vocalists. As such, the gospel-flavoured take on the track has a loved-up communal feeling. It's hard to believe that a re-work of a TV Show theme song would be as affecting as this but it's delivered with so much heart it's hard not to get swept up in it. What's next? Sponge Bob Squarepants?



Chiraq or Chi-Town? Choose Your Own Chicago


A strangely anchoring dichotomy lies at the heart of Chicago’s hip-hop music scene, from which the most segregated and violent city in the United States pivots, bends, twists and turns itself around, looping together a rich tapestry of talent and cultural diversity.

One need only blink in the direction of the vastly differing career trajectories of Kanye West and Lupe Fiasco, two of the city's hip-hop alumni, in order to realise this is a scene, filled with rules, codes and boundaries, yet undeniably open to contradiction and false word. Say what? On the one side stands self-proclaimed Messiah, Kanye, having irrevocably changed the face of hip-hop and R&B all the while *insert any one his “oh he just being Kanye,” antics here.* While on the other stands a comparatively humble Lupe Fiasco, conscious hip-hop advocate who takes advantage his position as a lyricist in the limelight to excoriate corporate America for its gas-guzzling tastes and establish youth empowerment initiatives.

Even the city’s latest YouTube-sensation-come-dance craze, “Bopping,” embodies the city’s unwillingness to present a unified whole other than in its collective and total abandonment of that very notion. Made famous by Lil Kemo’s appearance in Drill artist, King Louie’s video for My Niggaz, bopping, with its frenetic footwork on the bottom and loose freestyle of elbows and shoulder shrugs on top is, as Meagan Garvey notes, business on the bottom and party on top. 

In light of Vic Mensa’s new track, Feel That, come with us as we look at four of the cities male hip-hop artists, taking over from the Kanye’s and the Lupe’s and forging a path of their own. 

Young Chop 

19 year old producer Young Chop, is an embodiment of the unlikely collisions that happen in the windy city. Credited with essentially creating the city's prominent, hyper-masculine and violent Drill scene from a desktop computer in his mother's home, a gang-affiliation free, straight-edged and clean-record Young Chop can be seen being driven around the south of Chicago by his mum in the Beemer he paid for, and, despite having ventured to Paris to collaborate with Kanye West on the latest Pusha T album, had never been to The Chicago Bean before Vice forced him up town on a webisode of Chiraq. A true demonstration of just how racially and socio-economically segregated Chicago can be. Now signed to Warner Records, Young Chop is one of the most sought after hip-hop producers in the western world, and has been an integral cog in the sky rocketing career of Bieber from the wrong side of the tracks, Chief Keef. Producing songs for the 3 Hunna member like I Don’t Like, Love Sosa, and of course, 3 Hunna. Young Chop has gone on to collaborate with Big Sean, Soulja Boy, Juicy J, Wiz Khalifa and Travi$ Scott.

Chief Keef 

This kid. If you know anything about the Drill music currently pouring out of Chicago, it’s likely that you’re also acquainted, almost to the point of exhaustion, with Gucci-flashing, dread lock-sucking, belt-enthusiast, Chief Keef. At a mere 17 years old, Keef is the face, inspiration and indeed pin-cushion of the entire movement. Having hit Young Chop up on Facebook, while on house arrest in his grandmother’s living room the two collaborated on his 2012’s album Finally Rich. A boy of few words, Keef is also the semi-absent star of Vice’s 8-part web series Chiraq and gained even more exposure when Pitchfork took him to shooting range for their interview, whereby violating the conditions of his parole. Keef represents a reality of Chicago often neglected by the media, and outsiders. A reality of projects and extreme poverty, in which guns are prevalent, death is old news and gang-affiliations everything. It’s a world in which reality and social-media seamless collide; Twitter is one's jury and cases are fought on the streets, often resulting in real loss and heartache. Now signed with Interscope Records, Keef has performed and produced with the likes of Drake, Kanye West, Wiz Khalifa, 50 Cent and fellow drill artists Lil Durk, King Louie and Lil Reese.

Chance The Rapper 

Unlike the “brawl out,” gun-toting, motherF*&King spits of Chief Keef and his Drill affiliations, so intimately entwined in the city’s gang wars and gun violence, 20 year old classicist, Chancelor Bennett, aka, Chance the Rapper, offers us a different perspective on the same place called home, reminding us instead of Chicago’s soulful history with his rich textures and smooth rap throwbacks. Since his first mixtape 10 Day, partially recorded while on a 10 day suspension from high school, Chance’s second mixtape Acid Rap, filled with acid jazz sounds, and equal parts Eminem / Kanye references, has graced multiple “Best” lists, including Rolling Stone, Pitchfork and Complex Magazine’s. He has collaborated with the likes of future R&B stars, SZA and Tinashe, Childish Gambino, Joey Badass and fellow savemoney crew member Vic Mensa.

Vic Mensa

Off the back of the colossal popularity of his first solo mixtape Innantape that debuted earlier this year, Chicago local, and savemoney member, Vic Mensa has been touring with the likes of Disclosure and Danny Brown. Since turning his back on band Kids These Days and a shiny label deal, Mensa’s solo career has gone from strength to strength but it’s unlikely the bourgeoning superstar will be satisfied until he’s “earning more money than his dad.” Recently, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League producer, Cottontale, told The Fader “Mensa’s the rare talent who can write, produce and sing with equal flair. I don’t think he’s just a writer and rapper. He’s definitely a producer in his own right. He has a lot of potential.” Telling of the camaraderie that exists at the centre of Chicago’s hip-hop scene, Drill or otherwise, Mensa also appeared on an episode of Vice’s Chiraq, attempting to gather enough money to post bail for fellow savemoney crew member, the aptly titled, Joey Purp. That’s love.

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First Impressions 3 April


A round-table review of the week's singles featuring Sam Smith, EMA and Jamie xx.

Method to the madness: Each week we, theinterns, will select the most noteworthy new releases and take them for a spin. Each of us will score the track out of five and choose the best tune for our audio dietary requirements. Let the madness ensue as the tracks pass through the ears of an EDM queen, a nostalgic RnB revivalist, a lover of all things alternative and a 90s fein.

Sam Smith- Stay With Me

Sam: So simple, yet so effective. His voice is just so good- couple that with the choir and this song takes it to church. This is surely bound to be another hit for him. 4

Lizzie: He’s is bringing back the gospel to the masses which is something new and captivating. His voice is enchanting in the same way John Newman was with his collaboration with Rudimental. Can he carry his own album though? I am excited to see. 3

Hannah: Sam Smith knows when an understatement it is just the right statement. Consistent snare, simple piano, perfect voice. Stay With Me verges on ballad material but with  the same restraint and control as Smith’s vocals, pulls back before hitting Mariah territory. Side note, Mariah territory is never bad territory. 3.5 

Bianca: A mellow love ballad which treads along at a satisfyingly easy pace. I spent the song waiting for it to reach a gospel-esque peak and was relieved that the extent of its crescendo was maintained to modest church choir levels. The casual tambourine taps and nonchalant piano chords, accompanied by Sam’s ballady vocals, make it a bit too ‘Love Song Dedication’ for my liking but I can see how it could easily stick in the head. Begging for a remix. Over to you, Richard Mercer. 3

HAERTS- Call My Name


Sam: It’s somewhat surprising that the bombacious All The Days is followed up by this mellow and warm track. For me, it has the vibe of a more tasteful Take My Breath Away, with a powerful chorus that only an 80s inspired track can deliver. 3.5

Lizzie: Oh God i’m bored 2

Hannah: Yawn.

Bianca: I'm not bored. I think it's such a warm track that just has melody oozing out of it. 3.5

Jamie xx- Sleep Sound

Sam: Jamie xx kills it everytime. That throbbing base-line takes you to the clubs without even knowing it and those sporadic RnB samples inject just enough melody to keep it pacing along. 4

Hannah: Totally agree with Sam. Jamie XX has an undeniable ability to make 1am turn into 5am very quickly and this mix is no different. The base-line has my body pulsing before I know it and the melodic samples are doing all kinds of dreamy thangs. On repeat. 4.5

Lizzie: When was the last time Jamie XX dropped a solo single? I am so used to just hearing him play long, mesmerizing festival sets. This guy can do no wrong. I could dance, run, chill or sleep to this song and that’s no mean feat. 4.5 

Bianca: When Jamie xx was here for Laneway in February he played such an expansive and mesmerizing twilight set. This encapsulates that exact feeling whilst lulling you into another world. 4 Bianca's Pick 

SZA Feat. Chance The Rapper- Childs Play


Sam: Just another reason to be excited for Z. Somehow she makes the line “Stuck in Nintendo, you’re the controller” sound sexy. It’s not hugely different for her but the addition of Chance The Rapper is a choice move. 4  

Hannah: I love the lazy lull of this song. Totally sensual, totally indulgent, totally appropriate for the hazy hours of a sunday morning. Babies will be made to the sound of SZA and Chance wondering how we used to was. 4.5  Hannah's Pick

Lizzie: The female vocals on this track are so seductive. I just melt into this song, but just as I thought I was going to nod off (in a good way!) Chance comes in, creating a strong a closing harmony. 4.5  Lizzie's Pick 

Bianca: Eh. It just plods along for me. I'm not overly excited. 

EMA- 3Jane

Sam: Nothing that’s surfaced off The Future’s Void has excited me quite as much as this. EMA has such a creeping power to her voice when backed by a clean-cut melody. The ever so subtle climax at the end is pretty special. 4.5  Sam's Pick

Hannah:  Look I understand EMA is going somewhere with this but I’m just not going there with her. It’s a solo race to this climactic finish. 3

Lizzie: You’ve gotta be in the right mood for this song. I was not. I spent most of the song contemplating my future and what not. But hey, I see potential in her voice and general “don’t give a fuck”. Maybe i’ll try again later.

Bianca: I lost interest and started paying more attention to clicking my pen. That was fun. 2

Velociraptor- Ramona


Sam: I feel like Ramona is a guilty pleasure because the melody just melts into your ears so easily. It’s a sound that’s been flogged a lot on Triple J recently but this is one of the more enjoyable tunes I’ve heard out of a J’s band for a while. 3

Hannah: Pure Guitar Hero material - fun to master, less fun to listen to. Sorry J sound. 3

Lizzie: Look. I didn’t hate, but I didn’t love it. Its got the foundations for a great boppy, just-out-of-your-best-mate’s-garage song, great for the young Triple J teeny-boppers. But I can’t help feel like this came from the soundtrack for “Angus, Thongs and Perfect Snogging.”

Bianca: I'm enjoying this. It's classic indie-rock done with energy and fun. Now my problem is getting it out of my head. 3.5