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First Impressions: Drake, CHVRCHES, Iggy Azalea + more

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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 Drake, Iggy Azalea, MØ, CHVRCHES, Yeo, Les Sins & The Black Hearts Club. 

Drake - How Bout Now

Sam: It doesn’t really do much in terms of furthering Drake’s sound but it’s solid. The murmuring vocal samples underneath the track give it a nice texture and the way the beat swings in and out of clarity is nice too. I think the only thing that really lets it down is it’s hookless. I dunno though. It still kind of does it for me, so where I sit on this one I’m not sure. Sorry I couldn’t be much more help. 3.5

Lizzie: How ‘bout now, how ‘bout now? No matter how many times he asks, I’m not going to tell him I like the song. How bout now? NO! Take your slowwwww jams elsewhere please, except leave the JT style backup singers with me. 2

Bianca: It just seems like there's nothing going on in this track. I’m happy with the backing track being minimal as long as there’s something being delivered on the vocals, and vice versa. But that doesn’t seem to be the circumstance. Instead, what I first thought was a case of having my treble too low was in fact just a case of a boring song. And you know I’m all about that treble. 2
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/octobersveryown/drake-how-bout-now[/soundcloud]

Iggy Azalea + MØ - Beg For It

Lizzie: I can just see this going off at Schoolies *sigh*. Underage kids, UDLs and Iggy - the perfect combination for a Summer hit. In saying this, I have had it on repeat for the last hour and I am #sorrynotsorry. 3

Sam: Wait, is this Fancy? Everything from the minimal beats on the verse to the chanty chorus sound scarily similar to her breakout hit but I suppose if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. I absolutely love that MØ is on this one. Her album is one of the best pop records of the year and she deserves all the success she gets but this song just lacks anything special. She sounds sick on it, but Iggy is becoming a little tiring. 2.5

Bianca: I feel that MØ’s really wasted on this track 🙁 And not in a drunk in the back of the cab a là One More video clip kind of wasted. It seems that Iggy is using the same old recipe and frankly I’m bored. I guess anything’s better than Booty, right? Right?? 1.5  

CHVRCHES - Get Away

Lizzie: Yes, yes, 1000 times yes. I instantly feel at home when I hear Lauren’s voice, and the pace is perfect for the Drive soundtrack revival. I was a massive fan of that album, so hats off to them for birthing a track which fits in seamlessly. 4

Sam: Quite a bizarre concept that Radio 1 have going here but if they can pull in people with CHVRCHES I’m more than happy for them to carry on. CHVRCHES suit the dim-lit synth-pop vibe of Drive down to the ground so it makes total sense to get them involved. So many of the songs on their debut were aggressive so it’s nice to hear them here a little more sweet. The chorus is beautifully subtle and I love that they take it right to the dancefloor for the final one. 4

Bianca: Just when you thought the Drive soundtrack couldn’t be topped, CHVRCHES have delivered with a track of the perfect haziness and nostalgia that could sidle in unnoticed alongside the original tracklist. Nightcall and A Real Hero will forever be my favourite Drive numbers but Get Away comes in at a very close third place. Beautiful. 4.5 Bianca’s pick
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/chvrches/chvrches-get-away[/soundcloud]

Yeo - Secret Powers

Lizzie: These guys should have made it onto the Drive soundtrack as well!! No seriously, I can see myself driving in my Cadillac into the sunset, it’s so cinematic.. Musically, this is a beautifully layered track, something I could easily get lost in (its dreamy eyes…). Definitely an act to watch. 4.5 Lizzie’s Pick

Sam: Oh, I love how Yeo is so unashamed to deliver a straight-up, huge pop chorus. So many artists try to disguise it under many things but Yeo just goes for it, like a massive ‘80s power ballad. The whole atmosphere of this is perfect, from the way the synths twinkle gently to the way Yule Post saunders in with her smokey vocal. Can we also pop this on the re-work of the Drive soundtrack? 4 Sam’s Pick

Bianca: I don’t know what secret power Yeo has got but boy has it got a hold on me. I feel that he has really grown up on this track, with the melancholic synths and Yeo’s doleful voice creating a sombre affair, further accentuated by Yule Post’s entry in the second verse. The combination of both their voices later down the track is spellbinding with the mournful sax really taking it home. 4.5
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/snackswithyeo/secretpowers[/soundcloud]

Les Sins - Talk About

Lizzie: The voice samples mixed with the typewriter tap in the background, remind me a little of Jamie xx’s “All Under One Roof Raving” - minus the tropical drums. Just when I thought this track was all over, the 2.30 min mark happens...where the song becomes a thicker and interesting. It’s that style of music which can babysit you for hours. 4

Sam: Toro Y Moi’s dance project is actually grabbing me a lot more than his work as Toro. This one reminds me of that moment when there are only a handful of people left in the club - the bass has dropped very low and the vocal samples just swirl around your brain. Talk About is woozy, acid house that subtly climaxes with a forceful synth. Put this on and I’ll happily be the last man standing in the club. 3.5

Bianca: I’m not entirely sure of what the vocal is saying but it sounds a lot like ‘shakshuka’. I really like shakshuka though and, coincidentally, also this song. Like the heavenly middle eastern breakfast of Gods, Talk About is a steamy, hearty morsel that will spice up your life in all the right ways. Give this to me with a side of chorizo and I’m all yours. 3.75
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/company-record-label/les-sins-talk-about[/soundcloud]

The Black Hearts Club - Girl

Lizzie: Despite the Sesame Street style saxophone at the start, this a jazzy jam of a track. The combination of the looping and the euphoric chimes are a treat - definitely something to click your heels together with joy on a sunny day. 3.5

Sam: This is literally the start of like Frasier or something right? It’s almost as if these guys have taken the cream from Pharrell's Girl and left the over-the-top crap. It doesn’t take itself serious and I have a massive smile on my face just listening to them singing over the horns. It’s easy to get caught up in the novelty of it all but the whole instrumental is actually really impressive. They effortlessly blend from those horns into a day-dreamy chorus and back into stomping verses. Please give me what they’ve got. They sound like happy chaps. 4

Bianca: I am so into this. Bordering on slightly comical, the jazzy horns are the star of the show as the grooving bass struts along, perfectly accompanied by Well$’s initial verse and Lucho’s falsetto, Pharrell-style hook. I’m also totally je t'aime-ing Lomani’s French spoken-word breakdown at the 1:53 mark which is the cherry on top to making Girl the perfect recipe to make anyone happy...and if that’s not the point of music, what is? (Deep.) 4
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/immaculate-taste/girl-tell-me-something[/soundcloud]

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10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Iggy Azalea with MØ, CHRVCHES, Les Sins + more

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Truth be told we hate writing intros for these kind of things. It's like explaining why you need to hear these songs, without mentioning them, in a shorter way than below but in a longer way than the title. If you're the kind of person who just reads the first three or four songs and then clicks out maybe save your time and just head go straight to reading and listing below. Who knows, you may make it to five?

Yeo- Secret Powers

Melbourne artist Yeo has been very firmly on our radar since the brilliant Kobe. The electro-pop brilliance of Kobe has set a high benchmark for Yeo but we reckon this one may just match it. It's a flickering, pop-ballad with dimly-lit verses and an explosive chorus. It also sees him swaps lines with Yule Post, working so well we are happy to crown them the Sonny and Cher of this generation.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/snackswithyeo/secretpowers[/soundcloud]

CHVRCHES- Get Away

Look, to be honest we haven't really got our heads around this wholde Drive soundtrack revamp but we have got our ears around this new CHVRCHES track this week. CHVRCHES' twilight electronica suits the aesthetic of Drive down to the ground and Get Away easily gives off that twinkling, mysterious vibe that songs like Nightcall did on the original soundtrack. This band is yet to put a foot wrong. We'd like it very much if they kept the momentum going and popped out a second album before we stop listening to the first. Thanks.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/chvrches/chvrches-get-away[/soundcloud]

DELS- Burning Beaches (Feat. Rosie Lowe)

British rapper DELS is about to release his second album Petals Have Fallen and he's picked an opportune time to release one of his best tracks. The down-beat, sizzler features the vocal prowess of the sultry Rosie Lowe, who delivers a stunning chorus. The match of these two makes this track smoulder, with DELS' tough verses perfectly complimenting Lowe's velvety chorus.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/bigdadasound/dels-burning-beaches-feat-rosie-lowe[/soundcloud]

Jerome LOL- All That I Am (Feat. Sara Z)

Jerome LOL has a knack to transporting you straight to 4am with a simple thud of bass. As half of DJ Dodger Stadium, he's delivered one of the best albums of the year and is now dropping a steady slew of solo singles proving that he's just as brilliant on his own. All That I Am is more accessible than anything by DJ Dodger, helped by a melodic vocal by Sara Z. It's soulful, bouncing and best of all, affecting. There's nothing quite like an emotional dance floor banger and we'd be happy to shed a tear to this while tearing up the floor.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/fofmusic/jerome-lol-all-that-i-am-ft-sara-z[/soundcloud]

La+ch- Hi-Life

We've been lapping up everything that's come from this enigmatic artist so far and the latest, Hi-Life is another perfect injection of sensual electro-RnB. The voice is in full falsetto mood for this one taking the chorus straight to the clouds. Meanwhile the dim, minimal synths that run below the song give it this hollow yet warm feeling. These are the kinds of songs that you're meant to sweat to while you're proving to your friends that you can hit dem notes. And for the record we can hit these notes.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/la-ch/hi-life[/soundcloud]

Sportsman- Begin Again

It may feel a little like Taylor Swift has been pushed down our throats recently, but she's probably the biggest pop star in the world right now so we'll give her, her moment while RiRi contemplates whether she's going to hurry the hell up and release that album. With so much Swizzle Dizzle around, it's nice to hear a completely different approach to it. Swedish artist, Sportsman has teamed up with producer HNNY for a down-trodden, mournful take on Begin Again. With the sheen taken off, the song actually becomes quite a heart-hitter, sounding emotionally dense. HNNY will be in the country this month, FYI, for OutsideIn. Not sure how this will go down on the DF.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/sportsman1980/begin-again[/soundcloud]

Liv- Special

One of my favourite records is Corinne Bailey Rae's The Sea because it has this ability to be so subtle yet also have so much feeling allowing it to creep up on you unsuspecting. Special by new London songstress Liv has that same kind of allure to it. On the surface it could be mistaken for lounge music because it's so understated, but listen a little closer and there is this delectable, smokey voice running alongside smoking guitar plucks and altogether warm instrumentation. It's sexy, slinky and sung with total confidence.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/liv-songs/special[/soundcloud]

Iggy Azalea- Beg For It (Feat. MØ)

Is it just us or does this sound suspiciously like Fancy? Whatever IDGAF because Scandinavian badass MØ is on the track and she sounds like a total badass. Azalea's raps are in the pocket but steals the show because she so effortlessly adopts this sassy personality and delivers a ripper of a chorus commanding, "imma make you beg for it". If this gets her to the top of huge charts, justice will be restored in the world.

Les Sins- Talk About

This dance floor banger aesthetic is really working for Toro Y Moi right now. He's dropped three songs from the forthcoming album, Michael, which each of them giving something a little different. This one has a woozy synth-line which runs below a commanding, When A Fire Starts To Bun-esque vocal sample. We immediately want to start thrusting out arms back and forth, bobbing that head and picking our feet up from the ground.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/company-record-label/les-sins-talk-about[/soundcloud]

Sweater Beats- Cloud City

This Brooklyn-producer is supporting Chance The Rapper on tour and while they don't really share the same sound there is no doubt this it good. Good in like a 9/10 kind of way. The other thing we think is good is that it sounds like Australia (you know, Flume and the like). Lil' Island done good.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/sweaters/cloud-city-1[/soundcloud]

 

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Halloween costumes for the music enthusiast

The spookiest event on the social calendar has finally arrived and time is running out for you to find the perfect Halloween outfit. Instead of going down the regular sexy bunny or vampire route, why not be creative and emulate some of the most notable musicians of 2014? Allow our handy list to inspire and guide you, allowing you to truly stand out this October 31st. 

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Sia was one of the most talked-about pop producers this year with her anthemic Chandelier making waves on an international level, thus putting the Australian singer, and her trademark blonde bob, on the map. Immortalised by the likes of Lena Dunham, Hilary Duff and Maggie Ziegler of Dance Moms fame, it seemed as though everyone was keen to go platinum in honour of the influential songstress. Follow their lead and pop into your local wig shop to get the shortest, blondest, fringiest blonde bob on offer to wear this Halloween. If you really want to pull out all the stops for this costume, go the Ziegler/Dunham route of taking on the role of Sia by picking someone to party in your place so you can stay home to finish a bag of candy corn as they pretend to be you, pretending to be Sia. How meta is that?

Pro: Blondes have more fun.

Con: If you enlist someone to party in your place à la Lena Dunham, you won't be partaking in any of the fun.

mileyMiley Cyrus is always one to make it into the headlines but her glamorous 'outfit' that premiered at the Alexander Wang after party gave TMZ writers enough icy fodder for days. Show off your Joseph Pilates-sculpted body to the whole world, with a couple of nipple pasties for a touch of modesty, and stick some of your Mum's vitamins onto cat's eye glasses for good measure. Don't use Inner Health Plus or anything like that, 'cos that shit's expensive. Enlist a party partner to pose as Miley's most infamous muscle to make your costume that much more lickable likeable.

Pro: What better time to brush up on your twerking skills?

Con: Weather in October can be fickle and those ice cream pasties won't be providing you with too much warmth. This may illicit elicit two large scoops of fripples.

beyoncejayz_halloween

Recreate the second most famous picture in the world, succeeded only by the Mona Lisa itself, by enlisting the help of your partner and your favourite subtle smiling, third-wheelin' friend. Word on the street is that Queen Bey got herself some Grimes-style bangs today so better get those scissors out while you're at it.

Pro: You'll be highly topical and will also get to be Queen Bey for a night.

Con:  No one can truly pull off this look other than the Queen herself. But you can at least try your best.

elliphantMo

If you're up for a wild night come Halloween, why not replicate the stylings of party girls Elliphant and MØ from their One More music video? Do this by donning yourself, and your BFF, in head-to-toe Adidas, teaming funky slides with a pair of socks, slapping on some Geisha-style makeup and poking a pair of chopsticks in an oriental bun. Go that extra mile and attach LED light strips to your shoes for true dedication to the project.

Pro: Looking like badass, Scandinavian bitches.

Con: May induce drinking, vomiting, kissing, peeing in streets and other types of reckless behaviour (unless you consider this a 'pro').

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There are Two Weeks to go until Halloween which means that time is running out for all the best costumes to be shipped from the US. Why not save the time, and the shipping costs, and emulate the captivating appearance and innovative stylings of London artist and producer, FKA Twigs instead? Simply head to your local chemist for a toothcomb and a jar of gel, smack on some maroon lipstick and pierce your nose septum for the full Twigs treatment.  Completely nail the 'baby hair' style currently #trending amongst future RnB producers with the handy video tutorial below.

Pro: Save wearing your heart on your sleeve by wearing it on your forehead instead.

Con: Finding a Twilight treat like Twig's current BF, Robert Pattinson, to accompany you for the night might be a bit tricky.

hey_qt_halloween

If you don't know QT, it's high time you familiarise yourself with her. Born from the collaborative project of enigmatic producers and PC Music-promoters, A.G. Cook and SOPHIE, this "sparkling future pop sensation" is a fake figurehead of sorts who perfectly blends the genres of K-Pop, electrotonica, chiptune and trance, all before rolling them into a pile of sugar and glitter. Cutesy and kitsch, she's the perfect way to honour both past and future with her nods to both '90s fashion and millennial ideologies.

Pro: Reliving your holographic-wearing days of the '90s.

Con: You'll be hard-pressed finding any drunkards traipsing around Oxford St who will actually understand your costume's significance.

SBTRKT_Halloween

Halloween is all about mystery and disguise, so what better way to fulfil this than to replicate the likeness of the enigmatic producer, SBTRKT? Instead of carving a custom mask out of wood, unless you have time for that kinda thang, we've designed a replica for your convenience, to print out, tie elastic through and place onto that face of yours. Download here.

Pro: The mask will be your key to anonymity.

Con: Good luck trying to drink out of this thing.

lilyallen_halloween

London pop songstress, Lily Allen, graced our shores for this year's Splendour in the Grass, and brought along with her a plethora of outfit inspirations. With pinky purple hair, a colourful neon top and bottom combo and a Unif blotter kimono, she was a display of all things tight and bright. Emulate her style with an oriental kimono, her very own line of fake London-inspired nails and a tube of hair dye of desired colour. Also honour Sheezus's penchant for emojis with a pair of bikinis or any other suitable item of that ilk. Feel free to take cues from her SITG set design by dragging along a giant, blow-up baby's bottle for the night.

Pro: You get to show off that really great London accent that you seem to pull off really well after having a few too many.

Con: Fake nails + giant, inflatable object = tears.

kanye_halloween

When Kanye West embarked on his Yeezus tour in Australia this past September, he amazed, inspired and enraged his fans, and the greater public, with his mesmerising performances and supplementary rants and on-stage antics. His shows consisted of minimal set design and props, with one of the most captivating sights being the slew of embellished masks that Yeezus adorned throughout. While these Maison Martin Margiela-branded, 2,400 crystal-embellished masks may be a little too Haute Couture for a raucous event like Halloween, you're only a packet of Spotlight-sourced, plastic rhinestones, a glue gun and a balaclava away from emulating the Messiah himself.

Pro: Inflate your ego for the night and blame any infractions on Yeezus. However, just be sure not to offend any people with disabilities in the process.

Con: You may be mistaken for a menacing, albeit fabulous, robber.

arianagrande-halloweenMirror the look of this fiesty feline pop star with a pair of cat ears and a giant, fake, clip-in ponytail to make up for what you lack in the height department.

Pro: You'll fit in with all the other 'sexy cat' costumes on October 31.

Con: You must remain on your (more flattering) left side for the duration of the night.

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Elliphant & MØ drop risqué video for 'One More'

Elliphant and MØ had us enamoured when we first heard One More in this week's First Impressions and now they've definitely grabbed our attention again in the accompanying clip. Donning Geisha-inspired hair-dos and Adidas-clad in matching jackets and light-up slides, the pair get messy out on the town on a night of drunken debauchery. Directed by Tim Erem, it features the two gals drinking, dancing, fighting, kissing and making up.

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First Impressions: MØ, Elliphant, RL Grime + more

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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 introduce our guest contributor, Peter Rubinstein, who joins us all the way from Los Angeles. 

Made In Heights- Ghost

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/madeinheights/ghosts[/soundcloud]

Sam: I played DEATH by these guys about 1413 times which is about 1413 more times than I've listened to the U2 album, so as you can imagine I'm pretty enamoured with Made In Heights. Ghost only furthers my fascination with their minimal RnB-cross-pop sound. From the get-go the melody just effortlessly flows out with breathy vocals adding to the ease of he whole aesthetic. It's almost as if JJ stopped smoking pot and went outside. 4

Lizzie: This track grabs your hand and instantly pulls you up to dance. The cow-bell-esque beat is a a bit of fun, and the glistening backing track is a little '90s R&B. My favourite part of this song is the pace, ain’t nothing slow and boring about Made In Heights at the moment, that’s for sure.

Bianca: From the very first second, the syncopated rhythm of the cow bell bounces along with energy, setting the perfect backdrop to Kelsey’s sugary-sweet vocals and the romantic, wobbling synths. Love both the scratching breakdown and the synth solo finale which meld into the track so effortlessly. 4 Bianca's Pick 

Peter: The tight percussion and rumbling synths are a great side order to Kelsey Bulkin’s soft and melancholy vocals in this track. I would have loved to hear more of the sexy R&B soloing introduced near the end, but the frequent evolutions throughout the song definitely kept my head bobbing. This is another great addition to the group’s already impressive catalog. 3.5 

RL Grime- Reminder (Feat. how To Dress Well)

Sam: Following the abrasive masterpiece that was Core this is a serious change of pace for RL Grime. So much so that it really sounds like a How To Dress Well song more than an RL Grime song. Tom Krell moves in and out of falsetto providing a sweet vocal that punches when it needs to. As for the instrumental, there's really not much to say. It's more of a subtle accompaniment to the vocal. 3

Lizzie: Is it just me, or does this sound like Justin Timberlake’s brother? I could easily add this heartfelt track to my depressed hangover playlist - that sounds like an insult, it’s not, there is just a time and place for tracks like these. 3.5

Bianca: Classic Krell, fitting more syllables into each line than one would think humanely possible. This is definitely a departure from Grimes’ usual trap offerings but it was definitely necessary to strip the production right back in order for the beat to live harmoniously Krell's emotionally-stirring voice. Although downtempo & RnB in nature, it still has an underlying current of intensity, one that doesn’t sit too well with me at this time in the morning. 2.5

Peter: Following Steinway’s colossal release of Core, by far my most-played song of the summer, I expected this release to blow me away, especially with support from How To Dress Well. Sadly, I was pretty disappointed by the production on this one. The vocals seem very out of place and even off key at some points, and the lack of any musical progression left me wanting much more. Where Because of U succeeded in being a refreshing, slower anthem, Reminder missed the mark in this humble RL Grime superfan’s opinion. 1.5

Elliphant- One More (Feat. MØ) 

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/elliphantmusic/elliphant-one-more-featuring-mo[/soundcloud]

Sam: Oh hell yes. This just proves my theory that Scandinavian girls are the best people in the world. The instrumental of this is so understated yet both their vocals are so cool and full of reckless abandonment. And this sentimental, Robyn-esque chorus hits and it's like, why bother making music if you're not from Scandiavia? This is a duo I whole-heartedly endorse and this may be the best work of both their catalogues yet. 4.5 Sam's Pick

Lizzie: I am all smiles after listening to this. Such talent bundled all up into one song with a pretty bow on top. It has this perfect balance of pop and street grunge cool with MO’s short interlude sounding just magical. Love. 4.5 Lizzie’s pick

Bianca: There is such a youthful energy that emanates from these two. The vocals of the Swede and the Dane unite to make a sweet-talking duo that could get away with murder. Once the synths begin to escalate, their badassery really shines through amongst rumbling synths. Girl power, indeed.

Peter: These girls are truly talented. Elliphant and MØ’s vocal ranges complement each other perfectly as they maintain a provocative harmony throughout the track, transforming into a back and forth shouting match as the song comes to a close. The swell of energy keeps the whole production exciting and forward-moving. I think they’ve got a hit on their hands. Now if only they could get Grimes in the studio with them… 4 Peter’s pick

Yung Lean- Ghosttown (feat. Travi$ Scott)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=frnOhVxF6Zw

Sam: Yung Lean's hook in this is gold in my opinion. It's dark and haunting that has this clumsy attitude that's hard not to like. I know Travi$ Scott is the one to watch in hip-hop right now but his verses on this sound a little clunky. Only when Lean distorts the rap a bit does it sound in tune with the song. Having heard Iggy Azalea on booty this week I think I can forgive an offshoot verse because the rest is pretty great. 3.5

Lizzie: I am always a sucker to a warping synth, but it needs to be with the appropriate accompaniment. Young lean is an off-note distraction, who ruins the poor synths! Thank god for auto-tune, it is an attempt to make sense of all this mess. 2

Bianca: Yung Lean’s warped chant is giving me vibes of a monk’s sermon and not in a palliative, Enya kinda way. Seems like he’s Yung Leaned too hard onto the auto-tune. Which, by the way, doesn’t do much to disguise his inability to hit certain notes. 2

Peter: I made sure to recline against a wall before checking out Yung Lean’s new release. While the beat had me moving, the overall setup of this track is pretty basic. The autotune and lazy vocal hook were nothing new. He also mentions that he doesn’t “give a f*** about no one expect Lean” but later includes an entire section about all of his homies. Well, which is it?! I just want answers. 2

Montgomery- War Cry 

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/iohyouparty/montgomery-war-cry[/soundcloud]

Sam: Tom from Big Scary is having a great year so far. First he was involved with Airling and now he's jumped on production duties for this one. Montgomery's voice is sweet and the whole instrumental of this is part-polished and part-industrial pop making for a Lorde-esque soundscape. It's a good start but I'm sure there is more in the tank. 3

Lizzie: A classic example of a song that would blow you away if you away if you saw it live. It hits straight to the heart, whether you are a fan of her music or not. I am admittedly not the biggest fan, but I could appreciate it in its big room glory. 3

Bianca: Beautiful, clean production accompanied by an ethereal voice. I'm definitely getting Airling vibes from Montgomery and who better to produce her tracks than Tom Iansek? Dreamy and pensive, War Cry definitely has arresting qualities, although I did find myself becoming a bit bored towards the end. 3  

Peter: This one was way too corny for me. Even though Montgomery’s voice is pretty and controlled, the lyrics completely took me out of the vibe. Wishing she had said things she didn’t, trying to forget someone, “feeling the cold”…bleh. Not up my alley. 1.5

T.O.L.D- Lucifer's Eyes

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/t-o-l-d/lucifers-eyes[/soundcloud]

Sam: We've always had a bit of a thing for steel drums at the interns and on Lucifer's Eyes it's really the hero of the song. I feel as if this is a guilty pleasure because it's so outwardly enjoyable on first listen, but I suppose given he's a new artist with a dark, mysterious look, it's not really in the same way that Fancy is, is it? This track comes just in time for our Summer and it's actually kind of faultless. And for that I remove one point. Nobody’s perfect. 4

Lizzie: This track could have easily found itself on the Tomorrowland After movie released this week. The floaty nostalgia is present throughout, creating this Summertime love story soundtrack. On my first listen I had this desire for the song to become more layered and intense, however after a couple more spins I have come to appreciate it just how it is, in all its simplicity. 4

Bianca: The second the steel drums hit my ears, I was sold. If an artist ever were to win my heart, it would be through the clanging of these Caribbean pans of heaven. Creating happy, tropical vibes, they provide a wonderful juxtaposition to T.O.L.D's dark, brooding voice which leaves me to wonder whether I should be feeling celebratory or melancholic. Either way, it's a nostalgia-ridden, evocative tune that's dropped just in time for Summer. 4 Also Bianca's Pick 

Peter: “I sleep with no voice, and wake with no name”: vague with extra cheese. I didn’t want to like this one, but the steel drums and droning guitar plucks reminded me too much of seeing big, magical acts like this at music festivals. Take these sounds and rhythms and add 30,000 swaying people, and I’ll listen to Lucifer’s Eyes any day. 3

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Elliphant - 'One More' Featuring MØ

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The stars have finally aligned. Two goddesses at the top of their game have combined their talents to produce 'One More', the  latest cut from Swedish singer (and occasional rapper) Elliphant''s upcoming One More EP, out on October 14. An effortlessly natural combination, MØ plays the perfect musical guest, offering up her cool pop vocals but with her own unique edgy twist. Enjoy...

https://soundcloud.com/elliphantmusic/elliphant-one-more-featuring-mo

10songs_July18_2

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week

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Is it that music is getting better? Is it that we had a good week? Or is it that we’re overjoyed by the news that Adele will indeed be naming her album, 25? Whatever it is, these 10 tunes are just sounding that little bit better this week. Amongst the 10, we have the creme de la creme of hip-hop, a few triumphant comebacks and enough Ryan Hemsworth to fill our Pokedex. So go forth and check out the best 10 songs of the week. Gotta catch 'em all.

Click here for this week's Soundcloud playlist. 

Kwamie Liv- comin THRU

Looking for Paper Planes without the tacky, dance-along moves? Look no further than the third offering from Danish-singer Kwamie Liv, comin THRU. There’s mellow, RnB undertones followed by a hip-hop-inspired chorus that pops like M.I.A’s hallmark track. Wanna' get down, pop-it and lock-it this weekend? Yeah, you do. Press play.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/kwamieliv/comin-thru-1[/soundcloud]

Vic Mensa- Feel That

It was always going to be a hard job following up Down on my Luck but Chicago rapper Vic Mensa has done a valiant job. We don’t publicly condone it, but if your Saturday looks anything like this video then you’ve had one helluva weekend. As for the track, it’s a hip-hop banger that lays a runaway train flow over sparse hip-hop beats.

The Drums- Magic Mountain

The Drums have gone from the beach to the mountains on this trippy comeback single. There’s a bit more noise, there’s a little bit more psychedelic but The Drums are still there at the core of it all. Stick around for the 2min 30 mark when it all gets a little bit spooky and we descend down the mountain and into the rabbit hole.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/minorrecords/magic-mountain[/soundcloud]

Tkay Maidza- U-Huh

Is there something in the Adelaide water? Motez, Allday and now 18-year old Tkay Maidza has taken to the stage as one of the most exciting new talents to watch in 2014. After seducing us with her catchy track Brontosaurus back in 2013, U-huh is Maidza's first single since signing with Brisbane label Dew Process - home to London Grammar, Mumford & Sons and Sarah Blasko. This track is crisp, sassy and the perfect blend of hip-hop and pop - in a way that Azealia Banks could only dream to replicate. Timed to perfection,this release comes as Tkay is set to play Splendour in the Grass next weekend, Listen Out and Big Sound in coming months. Be sure to catch her before the rest of the world eats her up!

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/tkaymaidza/u-huh[/soundcloud]

Perfume Genius- Queen

Mike Hadreas (aka Perfume Genius) embraces his inner Freddy Mercury this week on the bold new track from his forthcoming album, Too Bright. It’s production is far denser than anything he’s done before with haunting whistles, brave percussion and a vocal that sees Perfume Genius take charge like never before. We’re not sure about the Perfume part but this one is definitely Genius.

Sinead Harnett- No Other Way (Ryan Hemsworth Remix)

Hemsworth is the guy you know and trust to do your work justice, and his re-work of London-based songstress Sinead Harnett's No Other Way is no exception. Production-wise, it is hard to fault him, serving up the perfect balance between soul, toyed melody and dancey electronica. The layered synths up the tempo of the catchy chilled-out original to produce the perfect mid-Winter pick-me-up.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/sineadharnettmusic/no-other-way-ryan-hemsworth-remix[/soundcloud]

Ryan Hemsworth- One For Me (Feat. Tinashe) (Lucas Remix)

*Wipes tears away*. Much Ryan Hemsworth this week, many feels. Seattle producer, Lucas does an emotional flip of Hemsworth's album cut, One For Me. Tinashe’s vocals are taken down a few notches to sound like a soulful male, while Lucas lays down keys and a steady beat. This song was already beautiful but this just takes it to another level. If you’re going through a breakup this weekend, press repeat. If not, press next.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/yung-lucas/one-for-me-feat-tinashe-lucas-remix[/soundcloud]

- Walk This Way (Lido Remix)

It’s everything video games and gaming arcades on the Lido remix of ’s track, Walk This Way. It introduces a whole new element of trickling synths and skittered beats that will possibly grate you and possibly won’t. Such is the joy of the democratic nature of music.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/momomoyouth/walk-this-way-lido-remix[/soundcloud]

Astronomyy - Nothin On My Mind (Bearson Remix)

the interns have got tropical fever this week from La Roux’s Trouble in Paradise and the vibes are continuing with this remix of Astronomyy’s Nothing On My Mind. Oslo House producer, Bearson has reworked the already-chilled track with, taking us from beach to beach bar.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/bearsonmusic/nothin-on-my-mind-bearson-remix[/soundcloud]

ODESZA - Memories That You Call (feat. Monsoonsiren)

Seattle-based duo ODESZA have dropped their dreamy first track from their upcoming second album, In Return. Awash with heavenly synths accompanied by purposeful percussion, Memories That You Call is an anthem of youth; painting pictures of wayward journeys across the plains.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/odesza/memories[/soundcloud]

And here's another. We're feeling generous:

Treasure Fingers & BOSCO- Names

Brooklyn label Fools Gold is quite literally a goldmine of tunes. Their latest delivery is from Atlanta Producer Treasure Fingers and it’s a disco cross hip-hop cross house number that’s exactly what it sounds like- a perfect amalgamation of sound. He’s joined by singer/songwriter BOSCO who effortlessly goes in between rapping and singing, sassiness and sensuality. Grab someone and grind them when listening to this. It will make so much more sense. Please make sure you know the person you grab.

[soundcloud]https://soundcloud.com/foolsgoldrecs/treasure-fingers-bosco-names-2[/soundcloud]

Click here for this week's Soundcloud playlist.  

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