The Presidential Election of 2016 is officially over, and I think it’s safe to say that the entire nation, hell, the entire world has been left completely flabbergasted at the outcome. All I can say for certain is that these past two months have been utterly chaotic; one hundred percent wild and unpredictable. We’re here to shift your focus and bring your attention back to the music that’s being produced and the joy it brings to our hearts. In trying times of adversity, community involvement is key to overcoming any conflict. I’m writing this at four o’clock in the morning and I feel there’s no time left to procrastinate. Time’s up, let’s do this…
Mura Masa – Love$ick feat. A$AP Rocky
Anyone who spends any amount of time on SoundCloud should be familiar with the name, Mura Masa. If by the off chance you aren’t, we highly recommend you check out the producer’s full catalogue. I first came across his work after hearing “¥ (Money)” on an episode of Plastician’s radio segment on Rinse FM. Since then, the producer and singer/songwriter has gone on to produce several EPs and nearly a dozen remixes, while simultaneously working on individual singles and separate collaborations with other artists. Without a doubt, Mura Masa (AKA Alex Crossan) has been on a tear making the best of these last two years. Shot on 35 mm film, the music video was shot in (what I think is) the East End of London and includes the lyrical talent of none other than, Lord Flacko, A$AP Rocky. The two nailed it on this collaboration, and it’s been an instant favorite ever since.
Charli XCX – After The Afterparty feat. Lil’ Yachty
Afterparty? Check. Zombies? Check. Lil’ Yachty? Check. If you haven’t been keeping up with the artist, Charli XCX has been on a quest to make dope commercial pop, and she’s been doing just that. In an interview with FADER magazine, Charli expressed her goals to make “‘the best pop album of 2017.'” In doing so, her childhood dream of becoming Britney Spears would finally be fulfilled. Unlike most artists in the spotlight, by rocking her style with confidence, Charli has carved an image in the industry entirely by herself. Charli has also gone on to assist and write lyrics with artists like Gwen Stefani, will.i.am, Rihanna, and surprisingly enough at one time, even Hilary Duff. In her time spent working alongside will.i.am, Charli revealed that she learned the primary focus to songwriting wasn’t about getting bogged down in writing an intricate verse, it was simply all about making a memorable and catchy chorus. Alongside a deliciously grotesque zombie theme, Lil Yachty’s cameo appearance on this track serves as the icing on the cake. Together with the combined efforts from Stargate and SOPHIE, the artists have created a fantastic song.
Drunken Masters – Louder feat. Portugal, The Man
I couldn’t pass up the chance to write about this new Drunken Masters track. Since 2013, the German duo has been responsible for generating a wave of commotion across the globe. Their remixes have been featured on Diplo’s very own BBC Radio 1Xtra show, and the duo has even gained additional support from artists like A-Trak and Flosstradamus. The duo is comprised of Joe and Chrissi, and for this track, the two Bavarians teamed up with the Alaskan rock band, Portugal, the Man. Having contributed remixes for artists like Duck Sauce, Casper, and Beatsteaks, Drunken Masters take a new approach for this track. If you’re a fan of Major Lazer, I guarantee you will enjoy this one. This track reminds me of elements of Diplo’s “Revolution,” but it’s uniquely different and the addition of John Gourley’s vocals bring this song to an all new level. Drunken Masters have definitely set their sights on a “louder” level. Crank it up and drown out all the craziness that’s going on in the world right now.
Sigma – Find Me feat. Birdy
Everyday, I seriously question why drum and bass never caught on in America like it did in the UK. It’s something that I’ve always wanted to understand in-depth, especially when hiphop in America, and electronic based music genres in the UK, were both responsible in pioneering the creative use of new technology in music. Regardless, for most drum and bass kids here in the States, we turn to our neighbors in Europe to provide us with alternatives. This next track comes from Sigma, an English DJ/producer duo that’s been around for nearly a decade. I remember listening to some of their early mixes on Drum & Bass Arena back in 2006; always prime. The duo consists of Cameron Edward and Joseph Lenzie, and they just recently released their music video for their latest track, “Find Me.” The song features the incredible, heartfelt vocal talent of Grammy nominated artist Birdy, who just recently went platinum with her single, “Skinny Love.” The music video includes Millie Bobby Brown from Stranger Things, and we watch her attempt to find her way around a city full of commotion. A great tune, and an insanely cinematic bokeh experience.
The Landing – Stars in Motion
I’ve been stalking the success of this foreign space-pop band for approximately a year now. While still working at my local college radio station, I stumbled upon The Landing’s second EP, How Strange To Be, and I made it my top priority to have “Then Comes The Wonder” on constant rotation. The music video is a beautiful culmination of brilliant lighting and a creative use of projectors. The text of the lyrics glide across the bare bodies of the dancers as they strike a pose and dance along to the music. Comparatively, while previous productions had a borderline alternative/mellow electro-dance vibe, this recent single is far more upbeat and enters new territories for the group; almost entering the disco realm. In addition, what drew me most to The Landing was the sense of minimalism and their attention to detail in creating pleasing melodies and catchy lyrics.