inspiration & weekend

Playlist 25.10.15 : Five Songs for the Weekend

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Conner Youngblood – Diamonds

Conner Youngblood pushes towards the spacious yearning of ’80s pop in “Diamonds.” The drums land like rifle shots, while the singer’s words drift gracefully around the sharp percussion: To be fair, I was so wasted/ I was dancing recklessly, I was so dizzy. Revisit“Stockholm,” and look for Youngblood’s Generation Of Lift EP October 9.

Read the rest of this article at The Fader

YOUNG GALAXY – Ready To Shine

Young Galaxy may have a little problem on their hands: They’re just too consistently good! For their past few albums — and on their upcoming one, Falsework — the Montreal band trades in the same kind of spotless, slinking R&B, and they’re super good at what they do. Their last two singles — “Body” and “Factory Flaws” — and their newest, “Ready To Shine,” are all great. They do nothing wrong! But it’s also not the kind of music makes me want to wax poetic over how life-changing and affecting they are. It’s just good, solid music that’s pleasant to retreat into once in a while. There are some awesome moments on “Ready To Shine” — like when Catherine McCandless’ voice shuffles through the words “Sometimes I would cry and hide all night” and the music seems to echo her loneliness in response — but it just doesn’t grab me in that way. Maybe it’ll be different for you —

Read the rest of this article at Stereogum

PELL – Almighty Dollar

Versatile New Orleans artist Pell drops the third single from his upcoming album LIMBO, putting out the track “Almighty Dollar.” Produced by Dave Sitek, the song is uptempo and club ready. As the title implies, Pell has money on the mind. The NOLA rapper/singer/producer spits about being in need to some serious cash as he goes about his day, and what he does to get it. The song is bookended with a Travis Scott-esque chorus.

Pell has already released two singles off the upcoming project. He put out “Cafe Du Monde” featuring Dave Sitek in September, followed by “Queso” earlier this month. A week before the album’s release date, Pell will be holding preview shows for fans in New York, Los Angeles and New Orleans. LIMBO drops on Nov. 6 via Federal Prism.

Read the rest of this article at XXL

KAMAU(ofTheHue-Men) – Jusfayu ft. No Wyld

Brooklyn resident KAMAU’s voice is a considerable instrument, a tool for lithe rapping, soulful singing, and layered vocals playing both percussive and melodic roles as backdrops to his lyrics.

New single “jusfayu” succinctly captures his arresting talent, a crystallization of the dizzying ideas glimpsed this past January when we first came across KAMAU’s “Moon” and “The Sun King.” Energetically exploring a one way romance (and grabbing an excellent feature from No Wyld’s Mo Kheir), “jusfayu” points to prodigious ability harnessed with focus. It’s fun, smart, catchy, and decidedly unlike anything in the current landscape.

Read the rest of this article at Pigeons & Planes

Miles from Kinshasa – IVRY

London-based musician Miles from Kinshasa offers glistering production and sonically-smooth harmonies with his new track “IVRY.” The video for the thumping, synth-filled R&B tune shows the Congolese artist rhythmically bobbing down an empty street, his face covered by a red ski-mask as he stealthily inches towards the camera. The grainy, self-directed video reflects the artist’s time spent in Paris as a child, “It’s a homage to an area in the suburbs of Paris (Ivry-sur-Seine) where I spent a lot of my childhood/adolescent holidays seeing that same youthful frustration, searching and lack of direction displayed in the movie La Haine,” the singer tells The Fader. “Imagine a blend of Hubert, Vinz and Sayid [La Haine characters] in one person… that’s who the character in the video is. Seeking a higher power who urges him to wait and that everything will be fine, but the sociopath, wide-eyed naivety in him and his self-awareness won’t allow him to, so he’s coming to take what he feels he deserves—

Read the rest of this article at Okayplayer

News

Joanna Newsom on Divers, Her First Album in Five Years

Here’s how to listen to a Joanna Newsom album: Play it a couple times. Turn off your conscious mind, the one trained by pop songs to wait for hooks, choruses, certain rhythms, specific chord changes, turns of phrase. Don’t bother trying to understand what you’re hearing. Let Newsom’s music wash over the resistant cellular walls of your brain. Turn it off. Put it aside. Do something else. Let days go by, at least a week. Revisit it. You’ll find that something has happened at the molecular level. Suddenly the sounds that seemed so alien, so unpredictable, are resonating in your bones like long-lost melodies from childhood; suddenly the impenetrable, high-minded poetry of Newsom’s lyrics begins to cohere, rings elemental, brilliant, true.

Today Newsom releases her fourth album, Divers, already having received rapturous fanfare from critics at Pitchfork, The New York Times, and NPR.Divers, for which Newsom fans have been waiting five years, comprises 11 thematically and harmonically linked songs, nearly all of them less than six minutes long. When people talk about Newsom’s work, length tends to come up. That’s because each of her albums has confounded our expectations of who she is and what she does. Her debut, 2004’s The Milk-Eyed Mender, was made up of sweet little folk ditties, the type of lovely, earthy tunes that, combined with Newsom’s instrument of choice, the harp, and her long, honeyed Renaissance Faire hair, earned her an unjust reputation as some kind of freak folk, forest sprite. Then came 2006’s Ys, a darker, denser, orchestral collaboration with the composer and arranger Van Dyke Parks, containing only five songs, one that clocked in at nearly 17 minutes. Newsom’s follow-up, 2010’s Have One on Me, was epic in an entirely different way, a three-disc extravaganza chockablock with references to what seemed like Newsom’s entire, wide-ranging record collection. As Jon Pareles wrote recently in the Times, Newsom has finally cast off that “naïf” thing; she’s a “meticulous musical architect.”

Read the rest of the story at Vogue

Drake: Rapper, Actor, Meme

In the beginning, Drake’s “Hotline Bling” was a pure child of the Internet. Released in July on his label’s SoundCloud page following a premiere on Apple Music’s OVO Sound Radio, it felt like a casual throwaway, a breezy compatriot to “Charged Up,” his anti­Meek Mill song, which landed at the same time. And yet “Hotline Bling,” a song about romantic disappointment and shortcomings, which moves at a slow shuffle, has become a surprise radio hit and is currently at No. 2 in the country. This week, though, the Internet decided it wanted “Hotline Bling” back. Late Monday night, Drake released its video, mostly made up of long shots of him dancing in front of a plain background that’s constantly changing colors: mustard, lavender, baby blue, peach, chartreuse. The clip, directed by Director X, is both warm and slick, giving this song — part of the lo­fi catharsis segment of Drake’s catalog — the grand­scale sensation that thoughtfully minimalist approaches can trigger. The “Hotline Bling” video is also the moment when Drake fully becomes a meme. No celebrity understands the mechanisms of Internet obsession better than Drake. Online, fandom isn’t merely an act of receiving — it’s one of interaction, recontextualization, disputed ownership and cheek. For the celebrity, it’s about letting go of unilateral top­down narratives and letting the hive take control. For fans, it’s about applying personalization to the object of adoration.

Read the rest of the story at The New York Times

Sex, Drugs and R&B: Inside the Weeknd’s Dark Twisted Fantasy

So is this swearing or no swearing?” In a darkened soundstage on the outskirts of London, Abel Tesfaye is wondering if he can say “fuck” or not. Tesfaye, better known as breakout pop sensation the Weeknd, is at a rehearsal for Later...With Jools Holland, the BBC music show, about to soundcheck his smash hit “The Hills,” a four-minute horror-movie booty call featuring more than a dozen f-bombs. For Tesfaye, that’s relatively clean, but he knows the pensioners in Twickenham might disagree. So when the verdict comes back “no swearing,” he nods and smoothly pivots to a censored version — a small gesture that says a lot about the kind of professional he has become.

“The Hills” is currently enjoying its fourth straight week at Number One, a feat made even more impressive because it took the place of another Weeknd track, “Can’t Feel My Face” — Spotify’s official song of the summer, and the only song about cocaine ever to be lip-synced by Tom Cruise on network TV. Tesfaye is just the 12th artist in history to score back-to-back Number Ones, a group that includes Elvis Presley, the Beatles and Taylor Swift. His new album, Beauty Behind the Madness, has sold more than half a million copies in a couple of months, and he’s preparing to launch a national arena tour in November. “I’m still digesting it, to be honest with you,” Tesfaye says of his success. “But the screams keep getting louder, dude.”

Tesfaye comes over to say hi, dressed in black Levi’s and a Roots hoodie, his tsunami of hair piled high atop his head. “Sorry, I’m sick,” he says, as his handshake becomes a fist bump in midair. Since starting this promo tour a week ago, he’s been to Las Vegas, Paris, Berlin and now London. The cold caught up with him yesterday, during a signing for 500 squealing fans at the Oxford Circus HMV. (Overheard: “I wanted to hug him!” “You didn’t hug him? I kissed him!”)

Read the rest of the story at Rollingstone

P.S. previous PLAYLISTS & more by P.F.M.