Jai Paul and A.K. Paul have returned to share an EP called Summer 2020, a collection of tracks from their Paul Institute collective including this banger from Fabiana Palladino.
In addition to A.K. Paul’s recent single “Be Honest” the standout track is Fabiana Palladino’s flourishing “Waiting.” It’s an immediate highlight that recalls the synth-funk of the 80s, but unequivocally fresh and begged to be played on blast at all the house parties we wish we were attending. In a statement, Palladino said “I wrote ‘Waiting’ a few years back. I was playing my old Teisco shark-fin guitar a lot and wanted to write my own version of a new-wave guitar tune. I was listening to Joe Jackson, Squeeze, early Police… and then I heard ‘When You Were Mine’ by Prince – a perfect mix of that new-wave sound with the funk he brought to it. Prince’s song is about a love triangle but mine is from the perspective of a broken android left behind in a destroyed city. She’s sick of waiting for her human lover to come back for her. She’s the voice of my own real-life frustrations with that feeling of endlessly waiting for things, both mundane & extraordinary, to happen… for work to pick up, for boys to text back, for life to start!”
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In a few weeks, the Australian synth-rock veterans Cut Copy will follow up 2017’s Haiku From Zero with a new album called Freeze, Melt. Frontman Dan Whitford, now living in Copenhagen, wrote most of the new album, and he returned to Australia before the pandemic to record it with his bandmates. The first two singles, “Love Is All We Share” and “Cold Water,” presented a more austere and internal take on the Cut Copy sound. But today, the band has shared a new jam that’s more reminiscent of their old festival-sized sweep.
“Like Breaking Glass,” Cut Copy’s latest, is a percolating synthpop tune with a grand-gesture chorus and a whole lot of big, twinkly oscillations. The song has a bit of the contemplative grace of the other new Cut Copy tracks, but it also has the big hooks and the bigger drum sounds that you might remember from In Ghost Colours and Zonoscope.
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Kali Uchis embraces the brute-force 808s and chattering hi-hats of trap on her new single “Aquí Yo Mando.”
Uchis is casually commanding here, making her control clear in the song’s opening lines: “You do everything that I say,” she raps in Spanish. “If you’re with me, only I call the shots.” Uchis continues to deliver hammering, amusing one-liners — “I know I’m your obsession like Romeo Santos” is one obvious standout — and Rico Nasty also contributes a verse, sprinkling a handful of Spanish phrases in between drilling English couplets: “Bossy but you know I be/Classy but still your freak.”
“Aquí Yo Mando” relies on a battering ram of a beat co-produced by the reggaeton hit-maker Tainy along with Albert Hype, Jon Leone, and Rvnes.
After the lolling funk of 2018’s Isolation, Uchis has showed more interest in forceful club sounds during the last 18 months. Last year she put out “Solita,” a slinky missile co-produced by Tainy and Sevn Thomas (Rihanna’s “Work”) that appealed to fans of both reggaeton and dancehall. Uchis also contributed vocals to “Malvada,” another thunking reggaeton cut from Tainy’s March EP Neon16 Tape: The Kids That Grew Up On Reggaeton.
Budding Georgia artist Terrell Hines has tapped Vince Staples for a new remix of his 2019 single, “Get Up.”
The remix of the politically charged track arrives at an apt moment alongside an animated lyric video that nods to the recent Black Lives Matter protests in response to the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Staples adds a verse to the song, too, that perfectly complements the still-relevant urgency Hines packed into the original: “I say what I want I’m not P.C.,” Staples spits, “You know black folks killed when police please/Just seen one on the TV/Make about three this week.”
In a statement, Hines said of working with Staples on the song: “It’s always good to get a vision out with other artists who want to live in a created space outside of the design we are currently in. I couldn’t have gotten a better collab than Vince Staples. I’ve always enjoyed and respected his work. He brought a certain energy to the record that only he could bring.”
Brooklyn rap trio Flatbush Zombies have shared a new song, ‘Afterlife’, produced by James Blake.
The new track is the first material released by the Zombies from a series of recording sessions with Blake, which started after Erick The Architect reached out to ‘I’ll Come Too’ musician upon hearing he was a fan of theirs.
They all met in person after a Flatbush Zombies show in Los Angeles in 2018 and started collaborating on music shortly after.
The haunting record is broken up by a silvery piano arrangement as it hits the chorus. “My, oh my/ I’m just tryna catch the vibe (That vibe)/ I’m just tryna live my life (That life)/ All we know is sacrifice,” Zombie Juice and Meechy Darko spit on the hook.
‘Afterlife’ is released with a music video directed by Arnaud Bresson, which was shot pre-pandemic and sees the Zombies appear in x-ray form.
“Today, there is no technology that x-ray films a living being without endangering it, so we worked hand in hand with a post-production company to develop a technical device that would allow us to achieve a similar effect,” Bresson said of the video.
“We used multi-camera tracking, recorded the positions and movements of our characters to extract and apply to our 3D compositions. It took four months of work to find the perfect style.”
In June, Flatbush Zombies shared a new six-track EP, ‘now, more than ever’.
“We are going to keep this simple because time is precious right now,” the trio said in a message to fans, announcing the new EP, which is the band’s first new release of 2020.
“There is a fight going on outside. They are coming for our hearts, minds, and souls. Black bodies are under attack. Flatbush is for the people. Always has been. Always will be.”
Meanwhile, Nick Cave has revealed that he attempted an eventually shelved collaboration with Flatbush Zombies.
Taking once again to the Red Hand Files, his website where he answers fan questions, the singer revealed another little insight into his career.
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