10Songs_28Aug

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: The Weeknd, Justin Bieber, The Harpoons And More

10Songs_28Aug

This week is absolutely huge for new music. Today The Weeknd, Foals, JOY., Alessia Cara, Halsey and Beach House, among others, have released records meaning we're not leaving our headphones for the entire weekend. On top of that though we have a plethora of new tracks that have dropped during the week making our listening duties even more extensive. We've carved through everything that has come out this week and we think you should start with these 10 and see how you go.

Justin Bieber
What Do You Mean?

After teasing it for a lifetime Biebs finally dropped his Skrillex-assisted single today and it's a really pleasant surprise to be completely honest. It takes the dance route of Jack Ü's Where Are Ü Now but goes with more of a tropical house vibe that drips with an effortless pop melody. We belieb this one is going to do really well heading into Australian summer and might actually signal a shift in the sound of the mainstream into more of this kind of stuff.

The Weeknd
Angel

The Weeknd's drops his record Beauty Behind The Madness today off the back of the massive Can't Feel My Face. Even though this is technically his turn towards the pop world, he hasn't sold-out and the album still features plenty of "pussy", "pills" and "trills". There's plenty we could pluck from the album and put here but its pretty hard to beat the triumphant closer Angel. It's a huge sounding ballad with the boldest instrumental he's sung over yet and brings the album to a close with a giant crash.

Alessia Cara
I'm Yours

Alessia Cara's Here is so good that she probably could've just ridden on its coattails for the rest of the year but she hasn't. Instead, she's dropped an EP Four Pink Walls with four other tracks that are just as strong. I'm Yours is potentially even stronger giving us an infectious pop melody delivered through Cara's textured, smokey vocal. The lyrics are a stroke of pop brilliance too in the way she hates this guy because she's falling in love with him - "I'm mad at your for being so cute". Awwww, you guys.

The Harpoons
Ready For Your Love

The Harpoons' debut album Falling For You was one of the strongest releases of last year and now so soon after it, they've followed it with the brilliant Ready For Your Love. Making us gush once again with their loved-up lyrics, they've chosen a more stomping electronic beat this time round. They have also pushed the chorus into gospel territory with the help of fellow Aussies Habits and it sounds glorious. Total jam.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/the-harpoons/the-harpoons-ready-for-your-love[/soundcloud]

OMI
Hula Hoop

The chart rise of Jamaican artist OMI's Cheerleader is one of this years most unlikely success stories but as always with an unexpected hit, you've then got an inexplicable amount of pressure for the follow-up. Well said follow-up has arrived today in the form of Hula Hoop and he may just of pulled it off. It's basically Cheerleader part two in the way that it uses the same tropical house aesthetic but that's probably exactly what he needed to do. It's not our favourite song of the week but it's certainly satisfied our curiosity of how he was going to avoid being a one hit wonder.

World's End Press
Tall Stories

Melbourne's World's End Press knocked it out of the park with their 2013 self-titled debut and followed it up this year with the equally brilliant but more dance-orientated Spirals. Now they have unleashed Tall Stories from a forthcoming EP moving even further in the direction of the dancefloor. Tall Stories is a thumping effort from the boys combing joyous deep house vibes with woozy vocals. It's a damn smooth return that makes us real excited for the EP of the same name to drop 25th September.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/worlds-end-press/tall-stories-2[/soundcloud]

TĀLĀ & Sylas
Praise

London producer and vocalist TĀLĀ has teamed up with newcomers Sylas for this track Praise and they apparently came together through a mutual love of Boyz II Men. It's a slightly bizarre connection but it actually comes through in Praise which feels like it has the gospel, R&B flavour of a Boyz II Men track albeit distorted by dense synths and scattered beats. TĀLĀ is great at taking what could be conventional songs and turning them on their head. She did it with How To Dress Well on The One and she's done it here again.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/praise-featuring-sylas[/soundcloud]

Noire
Baby Blue

We were hooked immediately by Sydney trio Noire's Just Like Honey and now they've returned with something even better. Baby Blue is the new cut from them and it continues in the sonic direction of dark, lazy alt-rock. "When the lights go down and you're beside me, Well baby do ya, love me like I do," sings vocalist Jessica Mincher every so gently wrapping her voice around the honey-soaked guitars. It's rare that you get a band in its infancy that can really take their time and melt into a slow tempo but these guys just do it so well. It feels like Anna Calvi met Savages and taught them how to trade intensity for sensuality. Beautiful.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/noireband/baby-blue[/soundcloud]

Zak Abel
Say Sumthing

We gave you a banger alert on this one earlier in the week and we're going to give you it one more time just incase you missed it. Zak Abel is a British vocalist and he's teamed-up with Kaytranada on this one, together delivering certified pop-dance hit. Abel's vocals are gritty and soulful and they blend so effortlessly into the crashing beat of this one. It's kind of like a rougher, gutsier version of Disclosure and it's sure to capture the attention of radio in the UK, at least. Hopefully here too.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/zakabel/zak-abel-say-sumthin[/soundcloud]

Montaigne
Clip My Wings

Montaigne rise in the past year has been nothing short of spectacular. She's captured the attention of the triple j audience very quickly and that's because her voice is so immediately affecting. Pair that with sweeping, grandiose tracks and you've got a product that you can't help but notice straight away. Her latest Clip My Wings is just another step on her journey to stardom. It's a huge sounding track that leaves nothing at the door. From the first second it sweeps you up with its heavy-strummed guitars and skyrocketing vocals never once dipping in energy.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/montaigne-music/clip-my-wings[/soundcloud]

fi2ndfeb

First Impressions: Feat. Daniel Johns, Kaytranada, Shlohmo & More

fi2ndfeb

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 Daniel Johns, Kaytranada, Shlohmo + more.

Courtney Barnett- Pedestrian At Best

Donna: All Courtney Barnett’s songs sound the same to me. My honest opinion is that she’s not that great. The lyrics to Pedestrian at Best are sombre and depressing, and her Aussie twang doesn’t help matters. 2
Sam: I said it when I wrote this up and I was pretty pleased with myself so I’ll say it again- Courtney Barnett is doing for Aussie accents what Alex Turner did for British accents. It’s definitely not everyone’s cup of tea but every artist with a clear distinction has been divisive and Barnett is no different. This is her bringing her A-game. She’s angsty and sings like a runaway train, allthewhile making the mundane sound raucous and thrilling. Love her who vibe and her in general, actually. 4

Sam: I said it when I wrote this up and I was pretty pleased with myself so I’ll say it again- Courtney Barnett is doing for Aussie accents what Alex Turner did for British accents. It’s definitely not everyone’s cup of tea but every artist with a clear distinction has been divisive and Barnett is no different. This is her bringing her A-game. She’s angsty and sings like a runaway train, allthewhile making the mundane sound raucous and thrilling. Love her who vibe and her in general, actually. 4

Bianca: Courtney B has got such a unique twang to her singing style. Slightly ocker Aussie without being painfully bogan, she manages to portray her lyrics with an honesty and wit that enable her songs to be received in an amusing way, much like the comical Australian poetry and yarns found in the most woop woop of pubs. Like Vegemite, I feel people will love or hate this song. And I loooove my Vegemite. 4

Shlohmo- Buried

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/shlohmo/buried/[/soundcloud]

Donna: Not overly familiar with Shlohmo, but Buried is a dark, rock-centric track that takes a while to get going. While every facet of the track is painstakingly obvious, it is not necessarily a bad thing, and I found myself being drawn into the song. Shlohmo shows off his musical dexterity, and grasp of structure within Buried, and while I couldn’t picture the perfect setting for it, I imagine there would be ravers and/or goths dancing to this track. 3

Sam: I’ve been watching rock creep into electronica for a while now and it’s actually really doing things for me. Shlohmo is the dark king and Buried is exactly what you’d expect from him if you’d just seen him for the first time. It sounds like an old, creaking church whose bells chime when rats scurry over them. It’s the middle section climax that really drives it for me. That’s when it’s no longer unbearably mysterious. I’m also feeling some Metallica vibes in there. 4

Bianca: When releasing this track, Shlohmo was quoted as saying: “You don’t have to like it, just listen to it.” And I’m doing as told. This one is a bit too sci-fi for my liking, the dark synths and pitter-pattering melody kind of leading nowhere. Buried belongs as an intro or interluding track on his upcoming album, Dark Red, and nowhere else. 2.75

Kaytranada- Drive Me Crazy (Feat. Vic Mensa)

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/kaytranada/drive-me-crazy-featuring-vic-mensa[/soundcloud]

Donna: Since I heard his remix of Erykah Badu’s “Love of My Life”, I have been a staunch fan of Kaytranada, and Drive Me Crazy solidifies that love. Vic Mensa changes it up with hard, choppy rapping, and then soulful singing in the chorus (and thank gawddd he doesn’t once say “bitches” or “hoes”). Kaytranada’s production prowess is evident, as little bits of melody created with dreamy synth sounds are carried by thumping kick drum, and goes from hard and trappy in verses to soft in the choruses. The 2nd single off his upcoming album, Kaytranada does not fail to impress. 4.5

Sam: Well this is pretty much a who's who of hyped artists. Vic Mensa and Kaytranada are a match made in heaven with Mensa perfectly slotting his rap into Kaytranada’s electronica come hip-hop aesthetic. It’s woozy and a little unsettling but that’s what makes it interesting. I think the hook could have been a little bit more memorable but to do that would be to damage the vibe of the song, so I don’t know what I want. 3

Bianca: Vic’s velvety vocals really make this for me. He manages to smooth out the track just as the rap portion becomes a little bit monotonous. The production leaves a little to be desired, however. A second over 4:02 and I would have certainly become bored. 3

TALA and How To Dress Well - The One

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/howtodresswell/the-one[/soundcloud]

Donna: How To Dress Well is an artist I have labeled as part of the elite “white boy RnB” club, and rarely misses when it comes to releasing new tracks. From the #songsfromscratch series, How To Dress Well worked with TALA to create a stellar track. TALA, although pretty new on the scene, delivers some nice vocals, explaining how her first live show sold out last week. I love the intermingling of the male and female voices at the end, and HTDW’s vocals are on point as usual. While it is a good addition to the summer playlist, with just the right amount of trap/tropical vibes, it’s not a massive standout within the genre. 4

Sam: I just love this so much because it’s so abrasively melodic. Tom Krell is a master of melody and TALA is becoming an innovative force within the electronic music sphere; together they’ve created something that’s a definite RnB throwback but one that also sounds futuristic. You know how in turn of the Millennium video clips everyone was obsessed with space and metallic outfits? That’s the visual I get from this. I want to direct a video and have the two of them floating around in some loved-up embrace. Aside from that, it’s really nice to hear TALA’s vocal potential straight up without the experimenting she does on her own work. I think that’s Krell’s doing. He’s the best. 4.5 Sam’s Pick

Bianca: I love it. Krell’s voice really shines with the fast-tracked, skittering backbeat. You can definitely hear TALA’s influence making an appearance; the Middle-Eastern-cross-Caribbean melodies creating a sonically beautiful cross of cultures. Bianca’s Pick

Daniel Johns- Aerial Love

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/danieljohnshq/ariel-love[/soundcloud]

Donna: Well, this is different, and as one Soundcloud commentator pointed out: I can’t believe this is not rock. No, it definitely is not! What Ariel Love is, is a sexy, steamy and intimate song to enjoy while sipping some red wine in the spa. The song, with its throbbing kick drum pulsating all the way through, adds an element of heat, with the inviting vocals and harmony in the pre-chorus drawing the listener in. Despite being a drastic change for Johns’, this song is effortless, remaining simple, with layered vocals creating a satisfying ebb and flow effect ensuring the song continually moves, and the listener is never bored. One point: this track, while extremely “on trend”, sounds like what many artists are currently doing - very Drake/Sohn sounding. In saying that, this is Donna’s Pick 5

Sam: When I was a kid my two idols were Ian Thorpe and Daniel Johns. When Thorpe came out last year, I found this fire in me that felt like I had to defend him against the naysayers, like some paternal instinct. I feel the same with Johns. Aerial Love is so far removed from Silverchair, that I don’t even really feel as if they have to be mentioned in the same sentence, but I just did it so...That track definitely doesn’t have that pop-smack that radio would eat up but it doesn’t seem Johns is endeavouring to go down that path. Instead he crafts a minimal, mellow track that’s the most soulful thing he’s done. His voice is wildly unbelievable but it’s really nice to hear him pull it back and show some restraint. 3.5

Bianca: It’s so refreshing to hear someone making such a subtle comeback. This track oozes experience and self-reflection; Johns has had some time away from the limelight, re-visiting his music career and approaching it in a new light. The R&B influence suits him surprisingly well and I look forward to hearing the rest of his upcoming EP to see if he follows the same direction. 3.75 (Side note: This is my Mum’s pick of the week.)

Mike Will Made It- Drinks On Us (Feat. The Weeknd, Future, Swae Lee)

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/theweeknd/mike-will-made-it-drinks-on-us-feat-the-weeknd-swae-lee-future[/soundcloud]

Donna: I find this track to be pretty average and the chorus lyrics uninspired (and repetitive). I enjoy the rapping -  both rappers have a good flow and feel within the track, but it would have been good to see them more integrated, instead of just tacked on at the end. Nothing monumental is happening in the instrumentation, which is by large repeated throughout the whole song on a loop. This clocks the track in at a relatively uninteresting 5 minutes. I feel this track could have had some more work on structure, however, the Weekend doesn’t disappoint on vocals. 3

Sam: I love Mike Will Made It but this song pisses me off to no end. I think if he began the song with the Future verse I would be able to prepare myself for The Weeknd but starting with his slimy vocals on that annoying hook is just unfair really. I feel like they’re channelling a Move That Dope vibe but failing. There’s something about The Weeknd that really irks me and he really has to be in the pocket for me to come around. Unfortunately, he makes this feel limp. Future’s verse is on point though, so it’s a shame it only comes in after 3 minutes. By that time it has already lost me. 2

Bianca: Well, this is quite monotonous. You’d think with all the guest spots, the rhythm would have been shaken up a bit? I’m also going to take a point away because The Weeknd’s hair was a bitch to photoshop. 1.75

TENsongs15NOV2

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week: Major Lazer, George Maple + Cosmo's Midnight

TENsongs15NOV

This week, Kim Kardashian exposed her body all to #breaktheinternet. People say that sometime it's harder to bare your true feelings and opinions than stand naked. In the interest of that, we’re going to show true bravery and give you our 100% honest opinion on what the best songs of the week were. Here’s hoping we #breaktheinternet.

Jessie Ware- Keep On Lying (TOKiMONSTA Remix)

There’s been about 53 remixes of Keep On Lying released this week thanks to Red Bull Studios who had artists from Pional to Nina Kraviz remixing the song. This one by TOKiMONSTA is our favourite one though. It’s a bubbling masterpiece that chops and changes tempo and switches between Ware’s original vocal and vocally manipulated samples. The song is great on Tough Love, but this breathes new life into it.

Blende- Running (Feat. Gustaph)

We already know the Swedes know how to craft a melody or two and this track by London-based Swede, Blende proves that fact once again. He’s recruited the vocals of Gustaph from Hercules & Love Affair for a funky number that glitters like a Donna Summer cut. It’s crisp, electro-funk that is just calling for some bouncing dance moves.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/eskimorecordings/blende-feat-gustaph-running-4[/soundcloud]

TĀLĀ - Unfinished Business

It’s true, TĀLĀ had unfinished business and by that we mean she was yet to drop the final track from her Alchemy EP. That track is infact aptly titled Unfinished Business and is another tightly-produced, innovative track. It sees TĀLĀ dabble in drum n’ bass influences with her voice hovering above in a haze of reverb. TĀLĀ’s expertise is in crafting songs with lots of noise but a killer melody at its heart. That’s the stuff you can really sink your teeth into.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/unfinishedbusiness?in=talaofficial/sets/alchemyep[/soundcloud]

George Maple- Vacant Space

Talk Talk was enough to stamp Aussie vocalist George Maple as one to watch but her latest, Vacant Space launches her to the stratosphere. Seducing with those dusky vocals, she ushers in a stomping dance beat that bubbles under for the entirety. Behind it, she whispers and hushes creating this dim-lit atmosphere that’s warm and encompassing. We can’t remember a song that was this good by an Australian female vocalist in a very long time.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/george-maple/vacant-space[/soundcloud]

Major Lazer – “All My Love” (Feat. Ariana Grande)

We’ve never seen Hunger Games but we’re taking an unusually active interest in the latest film thanks to the Lorde-curated soundtrack. The latest track to drop off it features 2014’s queen of pop teaming up with Major Lazer for an absolute stomper. It’s one of the less-manic creations from Major Lazer, with Grande’s pop voice and melody taking total control. We weren’t aware that there was a dancehall scene but we’re so up for dutty dancing in the cinema.

Jones- You

London newcomer Jones dropped her debut track, Deep, last month and immediately drew comparisons to Solange but it seems on her latest track, You, she’s setting out to dispel that. Produced by A.K. Paul (who should probably not be referred to alongside his brother any longer), the track is an innovative, industrial RnB track that sees her really go for it vocally. It doesn’t have the immediate appeal of You but its longevity will surely be greater.

Cosmo’s Midnight - Snare (Feat. Wild Eyed Boy)

We’ve been waiting for a minute for a new track by Sydney duo, Cosmo’s Midnight, but finally we’ve got something new from them. Snare is the new track in question and it’s a cruisy track that’s caught up in the clouds. It’s one of those slow-burners that just hovers in your head, slowly working its way into your psyche. Keep them coming, Cosmo’s Midnight, don’t leave us hanging so long.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/cosmosmidnight/cosmos-midnight-snare-feat-wild-eyed-boy[/soundcloud]

Chiefs & Nick Acquroff- Inside Out

In terms of new Australian music, this cut by Aussie producer Chiefs and Sons et al vocalist Nick Acquroff would have to be our pick this week. With the same kind of chemistry that Flume and Chet Faker fell upon, the pair have turned out a dense, melodically-sound track that peaks and troughs perfectly, both vocally and instrumentally. Inside Out is from a forthcoming EP that’s out next Friday, thank goodness.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/die-high/chiefs-nick-acquroff-inside-out[/soundcloud]

Wills- Going Through It

These days electronic-RnB floods our inbox everyday. It’s hard to find one that really stands out but when it does it’s a goosebump moment. Going Through It by enigmatic Bronx artist Wills, gives us that exact moment. It’s a confident, accentuated tracks that delivers a startlingly aggressive alongside silky smooth vocals. This is perhaps what Frank Ocean would sound like if he wasn’t a dedicated minimalist.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/willsslliw/wills-going-through-it[/soundcloud] 

Years & Years- Memo

God damn the vocals of Years & Years just get us everytime. Memo is the b-side to their latest single Desire and it’s a slow-burning stunner. It’s good to hear the group stripped-back and really testing out those vocal chops. Splendour In The Grass should take note and book these guys know, it’ll be one of the most sure-fire bookings of the week.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/yearsandyears/years-years-memo[/soundcloud]

firstimpressionsNov15_2

First Impressions: K Stewart, Giraffage, Shamir + more

FI_NOV15

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 Giraffage, Shamir, Baauer, K Stewart, TĀLĀ & BenZel. 

Giraffage- Tell Me

Sam: Giraffage is such a lush, understated producer. He really doesn’t go straight for immediate appeal rather drawing you in slowly. Tell Me is full of crystalline sounds and a calming vocal sample. I love when he really lays it on in the fourth quarter with that dense, hearty synth. 4

Bianca: Giraffage always has the knack of creating these delightfully minimal, delicious slices of synth pop. Tell Me isn’t overly dense but, like a lemon meringue pie, it is fluffy and light, with just the right balance of sweet and tart. 4

Lizzie: This one took a couple of goes to wrap my head around. Not because of its complexity, because it is so simple and soft, I may have tuned out the first time (sorry). That may sound incredibly insulting, but I think maybe I just felt incredibly comfortable and at ease that I just melted away. It’s a solid 3.5

Hannah: 1:18 is perfection. There’s just so much space to indulge in a Giraffage track. He’s a producer gives every sample, every vocal, every bounce and every poppy synth equal parts loving affection and quality attention and makes for a truly harmonious ear party. 4
[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/foolsgoldrecs/giraffage-tell-me[/soundcloud]

Shamir- On The Regular

Sam: The first time I heard Azealia Banks’ 212 I listened to it like 10 times in a row and thought she was the coolest person on the planet. On The Regular has that bratty, careless flow that 212 had. Shamir just beams with personality. XL Records have made a damn good decision- as far as I’m concerned this is on repeat for the whole summer. 4.5 Sam’s Pick

Bianca: If Shamir could go ahead and just be my friend right now, that’d be great. So much sass, so much confidence, so little time! If this is Shamir on the regular, sign me up now. 4

Lizzie: Wow I did not expect this. I don’t even know what just happened but I think I may be a bit too sober to understand it. In saying that, this track is not about understanding, it is all about letting your guard down and totally just wiggling, bopping and dancing like a crazy person. Let loose! 4

Hannah: Well, say hello to the If-you-don’t-know-now-you-know-Mother-Fucker track of the summer! Shamir brings sass and cheek in a sugary sweet in a way that only a 5’10 skinny boy getting about in rainbow tie dye is capable of. It’s strength lies in its hypnotic bounce and studiously self-aware, yet totally rappable lyrics. This is on repeat, on the regular. 4.5 Hannah’s Pick

Baauer- One Touch

Sam: Hmm. I know this is First Impressions but I’ve had to listen to this song just under 10 times to really be able to understand what the hell is going on. One listen I don’t think Aluna works with Rae Sremmurd and then the next I do, so god knows what’s going on in my mind. One thing’s for sure, Aluna sounds slinky and sultry, really shining above the minimal beat like she so often does. 3

Bianca: I’m actually really enjoying the amalgamation of styles. Baauer’s bass is just heavy enough and Aluna vocals float on top ever so ethereally. Rae Sremmurd’s rhymes are rough and verging on angsty but, as long as I don’t listen to the actual lyrics, they surprisingly don’t irk me. An unlikely combination that happens to make a lot of sense. 4

Lizzie: Rae, you sound like a whiny croaky teenager whose voice is teetering on breaking. I am in such a love/hate relationship with One Touch, I wish they had just left Aluna alone to do her awesome thing (as always)! 3

Hannah: Rae Sremmurd is the rap equivalent of a yappy chihuahua. If you just ignore the yappy, bitey, over zealous - I’d say furball but really, what Chihuaha has anything worth considering as fur - thing running about your ankles while Alunageorge and Baauer bring it, you’d have a good song. 2.5

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/baauer/one-touch[/soundcloud]

K Stewart- Close Enough

Sam: I’m such a sucker for airy, Aaliyah-esque RnB vocals so naturally I’m instantly in love with this one. There’s something really cool about artists that feel that they don’t need to bust their arse on the chorus. The chorus of Close Enough is free flowing, flirty and delicious. K Stewart is three for three right now in terms of solo singles. 3.5

Bianca: It’s boppy, it’s fresh, it’s girly and oh so Summery. K’s dreamy vocals are the perfect addition to the grooving melody that manages to be noticed but isn’t completely grabbing for your full attention. 3

Lizzie: Close Enough could easily slip into your Summer DJ mix. It’s nothing out-of-this world, but perfect for a chic outdoor get-together to get them in the mood for the season. Why do I get this feeling that Zhu could remix the shiz out of this and add a bit more depth to it? 3.75

Hannah: You know what, while I adore this song and its smooth groove, I really think K Stewart’s vocals get totally lost to production. Amp up those Aaliyah sounds. Close, but not close enough. 3.5

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/kstewartmusic/kstewart-close-enough-1[/soundcloud]

TĀLĀ- Everybody’s Free

Sam: I absolutely love TĀLĀ and I can’t wait to hear how this one sounds in the context of the album. She’s gone with using one of the most recognisable vocal samples and transformed it into the glorious, euphoric number that ebbs and flows in waves of happiness. It’s almost worth doing another remake of Romeo + Juliet just to include this. Crowdfunding anyone? 4.5

Bianca: Don’t listen to what Sam says, Romeo + Juliet. You are perfect as you are so don’t go changin’. In saying that, TĀLĀ has somehow managed to improve on an already flawless song with her touches being oh so deliciously minimal. She has maintained the celestial feeling of the original, amplifying it to seventh heaven with undulating synths and a ricocheting beat. 4.5 Bianca’s Pick

Lizzie: Despite the initial corniness of the first 5 seconds (you will understand when you hear it), this is a gorgeously twist on an old favourite. It is perfectly tickled with a bit of electronica, R&B and well-crafted samples - and hold out to the the last 30 seconds, that’s where I am found myself utterly smitten. 4.5 Lizzie’s Pick

Hannah: Sam, where do I sign up? TĀLĀ is doing for this track what Luhrmann did for Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet in the first place. While the lofty vocals and original lyrics give it an undeniably uplifting character, TĀLĀ grounds her rendition in the dirt, grit and grime of street culture. With heavy bass, quivering percussion and wait, was that a motorcycle I heard, TĀLĀ’s vein of feel good is a seductively dark one. 4

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/everybodysfree[/soundcloud]

BenZel (Feat. Juicy J & Cashmere Cat)- Four

Sam: I’m not sure how I feel about BenZel as hip-hop producers. Their work with soulful vocalists has been so impressive that it’s quite different to hear them in this aesthetic. What I do love is that they make the chorus so tantalisingly melodic, just by taking the vocal down in pitch and laying down in soulful guitars. The rushing end is also great but it’s all not really enough to save Juicy J’s uninspiring verses. 3

Bianca: Like someone pouring a shit load of unnecessary ketchup on hot chips, this track has had a whole lot of uninspiring vocals laid over its deliciously steamy production. The ending is where things really start to pick up for me but unfortunately it’s all too little too late by then. Then again, I’m sitting in a cafe with Maroon 5 seeping through my headphones so my opinion could possibly be unfairly swayed. 3

Lizzie: Yawn. 1

Hannah: This is what happens when someone seasoned in tantric sex jumps into bed with a 16 year old gangly virgin. Juicy J just lacks the oozy sex of someone like Jeremih to rap this slow about hoes and fucking. Juicy gettin’ bored? Yeah me too. That said, if BenZel and Cashmere Cat just took their production elsewhere (cough Jeremih), we might have had a winner here. 2

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/officialbenzel/four[/soundcloud]

TALA Everybodys free

TĀLĀ reworks 'Everybody's Free' from Romeo + Juliet

TALA Everybodys free

Featured in the Baz Luhrmann classic, Romeo + Juliet, Quindon Tarver's Everybody's Free was the soul-wrenching hymn of the '90s, soundtracking the heartache of two star-cross'd lovers in fair Verona who (*SPOILER ALERT*) take their lives. The song has now been transported to modern day by TĀLĀ, the electronic singer/songwriter/producer who has been on the interns' radar for a while now. Keeping the basic song structure of the original intact, the half-Iranian, South Londoner has put her delicate touch onto it, slowly building up the ambience with a heavy, skittering beat and layered vocals. Immaculately produced, this rework is a testament to TĀLĀ's knack for creating atmospheric beats, kept at just the perfect level of intensity.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/everybodysfree[/soundcloud]

10 Songs You Need To Hear This Week

10songs_13sept

Quality over quantity they say, but it seems we've been able to enjoy both recently. BIGSOUND delivered us a plethora of great new Aussie talent, SBTRKT offered up not one, but two new songs and Tkay Maidza has seemingly dropped about seven albums worth of material recently. Here at the interns we also believe in quality and quantity and that's why we're serving up not one, not five but 10 songs you need to hear this week.

SBTRKT- Higher (Feat. Raury)

SBTRKT's Wonder Where We Land is only weeks away from release already we've heard four tracks from it. The latest, Higher, features much-hyped Atlanta artist Raury, who lays down some masterful verses before a triumphant chorus. Raury is great but the hero of this track is the British producers instrumentation. The lightly laid-on triumphant-synth in the chorus takes us to the club and to church in the same moment.

TĀLĀ- Black Scorpio

British producer/singer TĀLĀ's latest delivery, Black Scorpio, feels like four songs in one. It goes from a Mission Impossible-like beginning into a triumphant, trumpet-synth which elevates the song to a new level. It's the first time we've heard her solely focus on the instrumentation and as such she establishes herself as a formidable songwriter as well as a finessed producer.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/black-scorpio[/soundcloud]

SAFIA- You Are The One 

Canberra trio SAFIA are riding a wave of success at the moment of the back of Paranoia, Ghosts & Other Sounds and it's most likely set to continue with the release of You Are The One. You Are The One kicks off with a brooding, piano-led verse which sees lead-vocalist, Ben Woolner-Kirkham, show off his incredible vocal chops. The beat eventually kicks in but none of the magic is lost as the instrumental heads straight for the stars. Strap yourself in.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/safia-music/you-are-the-one[/soundcloud]

Ryan Hemsworth- Difficulties (Feat. Trim)

It seems every week we are talking about Hemsworth. Whether he's releasing other people's music through his Secret Songs series or just dropping his own stuff, just cos. Difficulties sees him team up with British Grime artist Trim who puts down a strangely melodic rap that is softened by Hemsworth's gentle instrumental. For a track that has a lyric like, "hung like a horse, scuba-dick" it's actually quite affecting. Good work Hemmy and scuba-dick.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/djoneman99/ryan-hemsworth-feat-trim-difficulties-taken-from-solitaire-vol3[/soundcloud]

Becky Hill- Losing

Becky Hill is mostly known as the vocalist on Rudimental's Powerless but know she's stepping out on her own, with Losing marking her official arrival to the pop spectrum. Losing is a soulful, MNEK-produced number that is more of a groove-inducer than a fist-pumper. It has a massive final chorus with layered vocals and dense synths making it almost impossible not to dance. BRB, we're gonna go boogie.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/becky-hill-official/losing-3[/soundcloud]

JONES- Deep

From one pop-newcomer to another, Deep is the first taste from British artist JONES and it's groovy-looped affair. It's been produced by Jai Paul's brother Anup, who's probably the only person who knows what the hell Jai Paul is doing right now. That aside, he does a brilliant job here holding JONES' hand with mellow undertones. The Solange-influence is very prominent, but hey, there's room for two in this elevator.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/iseejones/deep-2[/soundcloud]

Kilter- They Say (Feat. Tkay Maidza)

At this point we may aswell turn this site into a Tkay Maidza fansite. The Adelaide rapper has been churning out tracks at a rapid rate recently and this latest track comes courtesy of fellow Australian, producer Kilter. Kilter has already released They Say without vocals on it but this version sees Maidza jump on the track and lay down soulful vocals that see her sing rather than rap. It takes the already brilliantly anarchic track to another level and once again we find ourselves saying bow down bitches - Tkay is in the house.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/kilterbeats/they-say-feat-tkay-maidza-1[/soundcloud]

FKA Twigs- Stay With Me

We've heard plenty of covers of Sam Smith's Stay With Me as its become the year's Adele Someone Like Me, but Twigs' one is particularly different. She's never been one to do things by the book and this cover is a left-of-centre, late night re-work. At times the original song is almost unrecognisable as she picks and chooses lyrics and cuts up the song structure. The result is an arresting, illuminated version.

Flight Facilities- Two Bodies (Feat. Emma Louise)

Two Bodies is the first single to come from Flight Facilities long-time coming LP, Down To Earth and it's a surprisingly demure affair which recruits Emma Louise on vocals. The video does the best job of explaining the songs charm. Two pale figures dance around in a dark room, sliding in and out of each others embrace, quite like the way Louise effortlessly slips her vocals into a soundscape built from unobtrusive beats and windy synths.

Seekae- Monster

Seekae's latest album, The Worry has just been released via Future Classic and with it they announced the next single from it, Monster. Monster is perhaps their biggest departure from a predominantly electronic aesthetic. Gentle guitars accompany a delicate, brooding vocal that's eventually joint by jabs of brass. As the title would suggest, it's a little bit creepy but it's also one of the best offerings we've heard from new-era, Seekae.

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TĀLĀ drops the triumphant 'Black Scorpio'

Black Scorpio

We fell in love with London electronic artist TĀLĀ back in April when she released Serbia. At the time Bianca said "dance, tribal and R&B lines are blurred harder than Robin Thicke". Today, she's dropped a new track, Black Scorpio off a new EP named Aesop and she's still blurring those lines. In parts it sounds like its straight from a spy film before dipping into delectable vocal samples and majestic trumpets. It effortlessly melds so many sounds into one that categorising it into a genre seems nonsensical. More exciting music from the producer/singer.

[soundcloud width="750" height="200"]https://soundcloud.com/talaofficial/black-scorpio[/soundcloud]

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