Tracks of the Week 4: 29/2 – 6/3

Yo! I got some more choice cuts from new music released over the past seven days. Just as last week, I was really impressed with the quality of new music that I’ve been hearing recently. If you liked/hated any of these selections, let me know with a comment. That being said, here are my five favourite new tracks.

case/lang/veirs – “Atomic Number”

Teaser single for the upcoming project by Neko Case from The New Pornographers, country/pop superstar k.d. lang & singer-songwriter Laura Veirs. Although I do particularly like the backing instrumentation of acoustic guitar, light percussion and string sections, what really struck me was the trio of female voices weaving in and out through the piece, each distinct in their own way. Makes for a captivating concoction of pop, country & indie pop aesthetics. 4/5

JMSN – “Cruel Intentions”

Smooooooooth soul. Feels like a classic D’Angelo joint from the Brown Sugar era. Featuring some bluesy guitars, punchy horns & laid-back grooves, it’s the quintessential slow jam. JMSN croons as if he was born to dish out heavy doses of soul. 3.5/5

Kendrick Lamar – “untitled 06”

Okay, so I had a tough decision to make here. Kendrick’s untitled unmastered. has several standout tracks, and I’ve been noticing a lot of hype around 02, 05, 07 and of course 08 a.k.a. “Blue Faces”. But as a massive fan of OutKast, it was 06 that stood out to me the most. It plays like something out of Aquemini (is it a coincidence that Kendrick muses about his star sign – Gemini – on the intro?) with Cee-Lo singing the hook, and production handled by Ali Shaheed Muhammad & Adrian Younge. It’s definitely added a LOT of hype for me in regards to his upcoming performance at Auckland City Limits. 4.5/5

Yeasayer – “Silly Me” 

Brooklyn-based psychedelic/electronic quartet Yeasayer aren’t a group that I’m all that familiar with, but after hearing this track ahead of their fourth album Amen & Goodbye due out on April 1, I might have to start diving into their discography. It’s surprisingly catchy considering how odd and heavily layered the instrumentation is, and the vocals really give me vibes of Andy Bell from 1980s synthpop duo Erasure. 3.5/5

Your Old Droog – “Hip-Hop Head”

Had a good laugh while listening to this. Your Old Droog delivers a couple of funny verses about a girl he meets that really loves hip hop, hence the title. There are some fairly clever humorous lines, for example “Fuck with Bun B, then she givin up the Buns, B”. It’s produced by Alchemist, who gives it an old-school style beat with some druggy horns and a steady backbeat. It’s the kind of comedy rap that I don’t hear very often in modern hip hop, akin to what Biz Markie was doing during the 1980s. 3.5/5

– Karl


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