Moonchild Release Sophomore Album “Please Rewind” (Video + Audio)

moonchildReleasing their single “Don’t Wake Me” back in 2012, Moonchild have finally completed their sophomore album Please Rewind. Leading to now, the California based group, who met while attending a Jazz Performance program at University of Southern California, have opened many shows for Stevie Wonder and Georgia Anne Muldrow and have performed throughout the West Coast, receiving acclaim from artists such as Jill Scott, Robert Glasper, Tyler the Creator, DJ Jazzy Jeff, 9th Wonder, and James Poyser, BBC Radio tastemaker Gilles Peterson, KCRW, and on Los Angeles radio station 102.3.

The Jazz trio had attended a house party, where attendees were given stickers with the inscription “Please Rewind” and post party they stuck the stickers around town locally. The phrase stayed with them as a concept to apply to their album with the idea of listeners being prompted to “rewind” their music over and over. Moonchild incorporate their jazz training to create their own style of contemporary soul and  Please Rewind is sure to soothe you. Check out the video for “Nobody” below and head over to their Bandcamp page to hear and purchase the Please Rewind.

De La Soul Release New Mixtape to Honor J Dilla through a BitTorrent Bundle (Download)

de-la-soul-smell-the-daisy With De La Soul teaming with BitTorrent Bundle to release their latest mixtape, Smell the DA.I.S.Y., we could say that P2P technology has finally succeeded its quest to lead artists to the kool-aid. Up until now, artists have been reluctant to drink, due to its lack of profitability and scalability. But with this release, BitTorrent stands for something a bit more positive where all parties win (well, kind of).

Pioneering in their approach from the start of their careers in 1989, De La Soul‘s 3 Feet High and Rising changed the course of hip hop through its heavy sampling, and its comedic and eclectic positive messaging, so partnering with BitTorrent should not surprise. The BitTorrent Bundle consists of classic De La Soul style lyricism over stellar J Dilla beats. To further in honoring Dilla‘s legacy, a video of the J Dilla Still Shining documentary is also included. This is a mega freebie where all you have to do is provide your email to download, and whenever you share it. We suggest you get it now!

DOWNLOAD LINK: De La Soul: Smell the DA.I.S.Y.
1. “Let The King Ascend” [Audio]
2. “Who” featuring Redman [Audio]
3. “Dilla Plugged In” [Audio]
4. “Goes The Word” [Audio]
5. “Vocabulary Spills” [Audio]
6. “The Pitch” [Audio]
7. “Taking The Train” [Audio]
8. “Leave Your Cares Behind” [Audio]
9. “O’Shut Up” [Audio]
10. “No More No Less” [Audio]
11. “Marvin Jaye” [Audio]
12. “Smell The DA.I.S.Y. Letter” [Audio]
13. J Dilla Documentary “Still Shinning” [Video]
14. J Dilla Wallpaper [Art]

IN THE TRUNK: Lightnin Rod’s Hustlers Convention – Rap’s Greatest Lost Album

hustlers-convention The Hustlers Convention, is one of rap’s greatest lost album. As its creator, Jalal Mansur Nuriddin, the Grandfather of Rap and founding member of the The Last Poets recalls, The Hustlers Convention “went down like a murder mystery or something.” The album was released in 1973 and is regarded rap’s first album. Nuriddin never received the recognition the album deserved nor made any money from what undoubtedly influenced the evolution of rap music.

Lightnin’ Rod’s Hustlers Convention takes us through the life and time of two brothers, Spoon and Sport (who affectionately refer to each other as their “ace-boon-poon”) as they finagle through slick card, dice, and pool games. Their “hustler supreme” bravado is heard from the album’s introduction where Sport says, “I was snorting skag, while others played tag/ And running through bitches like rags to riches,” as their story unfolds showcasing their artistry in deception. It would only be a matter of time before we’re taken on a car chase, brought smack in the middle of a shootout, running from cops, to feeling the despair of being on death row. Hustlers Convention is a sensory experience, where its pace flows like a narrative out of a Iceberg Slim novel. The cadence transports you to a time when everything abound oozed Super Fly, and the incredibly tight musical composition, that it’s startling to learn the band was actually Kool & the Gang before they’d reached super stardom status.

To keep this seminal work alive, Chuck D is working as executive producer on the Hustlers Convention with Mike Todd as the director to chronicle this missing part of rap music’s history. The film will feature all members of The Last Poets, KRS-One, Chuck D, and Melle Mel and is scheduled to release some time in 2014.

While you’re here, you can stream the album below but the album is also available on iTunes and Amazon for purchase. You need this in your arsenal!

Hustlers Convention – Side A

Hustlers Convention – Side B

Jay Electronica “Better in Tune With the Infinite” feat. LaTonya Givens (Audio)

jay-electronicaPriorities seem to be a bit off-kilter for Jay Electronica. Having jumped across the Atlantic Ocean to London, then being entangled in the marital affairs of a British heiress — it has been a wonder if Jay is in fact still making music?

We can lay that thought to rest, given that Jay recently tweeted this new track “Better in Tune With the Infinite,” featuring vocals from LaTonya Givens. Lifting Japanese composer Kyuichi Sakamoto‘s “Bibo No Aozora” for the music (most notably used by Trey Songz‘s on his “Can’t Be Friends“), an excerpt from Nation of Islam leader Elijah Muhammad, and a scene from The Wizard of Oz, Jay’s one verse rap touches on a multitude of subjects that are all somehow interrelated. His final line of “staring out the window is for love songs and house flies” simply adds to its melancholy. Feeling the abstractism.

Ending question: Can you hurry up with the album, Jay?!

“Under the Weather” Marks Return of UK Producer Domu! (Audio)

domu-under-the-weather

Towards the end of 2009, famed underground electronic, broken beat, drum and bass producer, Dominic Stanton (aka Domu) wrote a poignant piece on his blog and bid us adieu and his life in music. Fans were upset, but there was a unified understanding of his position, which was not to have an industry define him and turn him into a producer he no longer recognized or wanted to be associated with. A hard pill to swallow with yourself.

Almost five years later, Domu has returned. If it’s your life’s purpose is to create, you will always create, despite adversities. Under the Weather highlights three styles in electronic music from bass-driven techno, ambient-house, and hip-hop. The three track EP starts with “Rain All Day,” a bass-heavy drum ‘n bass tune with dark elements and soft contrasting vocals. “Sunshrine” is the complete dance track, a la Theo Parrish trimmed down to include a Photek bass combo. To close out the EP, Domu takes us to his other love, hip hop, on what could possibly be a Roots Crew arrangement. All that’s missing is an ill rhyme.

Released on Sector 12/12 label, the brainchild of Mr Shift, who used to run TrebleO with Domu — so it’s no surprise they have joined forces again. Check out Under the Weather below, which is available at a “name your price” purchase on Bandcamp.

New Album from UK Soul Singer, Colonel Red with “Redlight” (Audio)

colonel-red-redlightOur soul brother Colonel Red returns with his own brand of sophisticated funk on his fourth studio album Redlight, which is scheduled to release March 28th on Ink Rebellion record label. Continuing with his positive message of empowerment and self-discovery against funky slow groove tunes, what sets Redlight apart from other releases is how it musically brings old styles into the new, incorporating spacial sounds, funky guitar riffs and keys. It has a Prince, Parliament Funkadelic vibe to it in places. The title track, “Redlight” features a great use of the hohner clavinet sound (heard on Stevie Wonder‘s “Superstition”). On the song, “Satta,” Redz‘s delivery is somewhat of a prayer, and on “Change” we are given a beautiful heartfelt ballad. While listening to Redlight, couldn’t help think of Amalia, who vocally is like a female Colonel Red; they could do something electric together! (Let’s see if we can start a campaign on making this happen).

Redlight releases next month and is available for pre-order on Colonel Red‘s Bandcamp. Check it out!

IN THE TRUNK: Aretha Franklin – “Only the One You Love” (Audio)

aretha-franklin-only-the-one-you-love
Aretha Franklin brought color, texture, and movement to so many songs over the years. We all know her classics after a few notes. But I was unfamiliar with “Only the One You Love” when I first heard it, and loved the record as soon as I heard it. The song was released in 1967 as part of the album Take it like You Give It on Columbia Records. It featured production from various musicians such as Clyde Otis, who produced this song. Aretha, born in 1942, Memphis, Tennessee, began singing as a child in her father’s church in Detroit, Michigan. She recorded first as a teenager and was a veteran in the music industry by the age of 25, when this record was released. Recording well over 40 albums, Aretha amassed countless hit singles, and has been given too many awards to name. The album Take It Like You Give It represents a special part of her earlier career before earning the title of Queen of Soul.

The analog recording of this record is warm and clear. It features some incredibly simple yet sincere melodies; a secret which has always given Aretha’s voice the proper vehicle to drive with so many great producers, song writers, or arrangers. I was not able to find who the musicians were who played on this record, but I suspect it was The Wrecking Crew, who played on many of Columbia Records recording sessions during the 60s. The beginning notes of the guitar become the sweet loop to contrast what sounds like pain and forgiveness in Aretha’s voice. The bass is under the guitar and the piano as the drummer does an incredible job of walking the pace, slowly, yet noticeably together. It’s a beautiful tune to play for anyone who has fallen out of love, only to fall right back in.

Kate Tempest – “Lonely Daze” (Audio)

katetempest_lonelydazeIt’s rare when you hear a spoken word artist who stops you completely in your tracks! Kate Tempest is so arresting in her delivery, you have no other choice but to listen! Hailing from South London, Brockley, Tempest captures the essence of London life through her storytelling, though often a grim reality, there still lies redemption in every song. Her sophomore album Everybody Down hits stores May 19th through Big Dada and will be 12 chapters of one overarching story with production from Dan Carey (M.I.A., Bat of Lashes Santigold, Brazilian Girls).

At only 27 years old, Tempest has covered a lot turf —  she has written three theatre plays Wasted, Brand New Ancients, and Glasshouse shown at various theatre houses in London; published a book of poetry through Bloomsbury, with a new collection scheduled to publish this year through Picador; lectured at London’s Goldsmith University and Yale University for creative writing classes; and has worked on the Amnesty International program assisting secondary (High School) students while write their own protest songs. Check out “Lonely Daze” below, the first single from the her forthcoming album Everybody Down.

Yasiin Gaye: The Departure – Produced by Amerigo Gazaway (Download)

yasiin-gaye-amerigo-gazawayTo be completely honest, hearing about the Yasiin + Gaye project did not excite me as much as Amerigo Gazaway‘s Bizarre Tribe: A Quest to the Pharcyde did, mainly because I am a die hard Marvin Gaye fan with the belief that his music is sacred and should not be remixed. However, after listening to Yasiin Gaye: The Departure, it becomes clear just how immersed Gazaway is in Marvin Gaye‘s sound, focusing on his prized possession — the voice. Song titles are subverted into something else and elements heard are taken from several songs sometimes, even other artists, as shown on “I Want You Till the Summertime.” One would think it would be a remix of “I Want You” but instead we hear Yasiin singing the melody of Bob Marley‘s “Sun is Shining” and the music’s foundation is taken from Gaye’s “Mercy Mercy Me?” “Sexual Healing” is perhaps my least favourite Gaye song, due to its cross into the 80s sterile drum machine sound. However, by slightly changing the pitch of Gaye’s vocals, setting them against a slowed down “What’s Going On?” bassline, and even sprinkling a touch of Teddy Pendergrass, “Come On & Go With Me” the track, and an occasional wail from Yasiin, “The Panties” will certainly do the task of sexual healing.

Yasiin Gaye: The Departure is available as a free download and we suggest you grab your copy fast! From the success of Gazaway‘s Fela Soul and Bizarre Tribe: A Quest to the Pharcyde these links will not be available for long! Get your download here!

Kelis – “Jerk Ribs” (Video)

kelis-jerk-ribsGearing up for a solid year, Kelis intends to take us on a journey through her favourite food. Graduating from Le Cordon Bleu in 2013, Kelis launched her own product line of sauces called Feast, and on February 26th The Cooking Channel will premier a cooking special Saucy & Sweet” with Kelis as she opens the doors to her life as a singer and chef. Her new album, aptly titled Food will releases April 28th. Judging from these strategic moves, Kelis plan is to become a household name. Below is the official video for “Jerk Ribs.” Was expecting something a bit more gritter and down home but I suppose it’s all about depicting a particular lifestyle, as Kelis wants us to know, “My passion is food, my life is an adventure to be savored.”

Little Dragon – “Klapp Klapp” (Video)

little-dragon-klapp-klapp2A little late on posting, but we can’t have a Little Dragon release go by unnoticed! As briefly mentioned earlier this month, our Swedish gems are set to release their fourth studio album Nabuma Rubberband (UK May 12, US May 13 US) and are getting very creative in grabbing the attention of fans through their pre-promotions. Starting with a intimate video featured in their communal home, giving us a taste of what off stage life is like for the band. Last week was their most advantageous — a promotion with a personable touch. They instructed fans to visit their website, enter their phone number and Yukimi would call you, seemingly before your eyes. Each band member calls you and dispels some kind of information on what they’re doing or what they like to do, then they perform the track “Klapp Klapp” at the end. Ingenious in execution, further extending their free flowing vibe. Check it out here.

Below is the official video for “Klapp Klapp.” Unfortunately, it doesn’t feature the band in action, but I suppose the real treat is their phone promotion. Nonetheless, May 13th cannot come sooner!

SOHN – “Artifice” (Video)

sohn-artifice

SOHN pretty much came out of left field last year with his debut single, “Bloodlines” and had a solid remainder of 2013 by completing a run of shows, and receiving acclaim from BBC Radio’s Zane Lowe and singer Migel. “Artifice,” taken from his forthcoming album Tremors, is the first visual we get of SOHN. The video, directed by Thom Glunt, slowly pans a dark, chaotic scene and somehow within the chaos, it is pure calm. Tremors is set to release April 8th on 4AD and SOHN will begin touring in the UK, Europe and North America in April starting with Austria, where the London native currently lives. Show dates are listed below.

April
4th – Rockhouse, Salzburg, Austria [Tickets]
5th – Conrad Sohm, Dornbirn, Austria [Tickets]
8th – Gebaude 9, Cologne, Germany [Tickets]
9th – Exit 07, Luxembourg [Tickets]
11th – Uebel & Gefahrlich, Hamburg, Germany [Tickets]
12th – Lagerhalle, Osnabruck, Germany [Tickets]
13th – Heimathafen, Berlin, Germany [Tickets]
14th – AB Club, Brussels, Belgium [Tickets]
16th – Melkweg, Amsterdam, Holland
17th – Village Underground, London, UK [Tickets]
19th – Nouveau Casino, Paris, France [Tickets]
20th – Zoom, Frankfurt, Germany [Tickets]
23rd – Arena, Vienna, Austria [Tickets]

May
7th – Rock & Roll Hotel, Washington, DC, US [Tickets]
8th – Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia PA, US [Tickets]
9th – Bowery Ballroom, New York, NY, US [Tickets]
10th – Rough Trade, Brooklyn, NY, US [Tickets]
12th – The Sinclair, Boston, MA, US [Tickets]
13th – Ill Motore, Montreal, QC, Canada [Tickets]
14th – Horseshoe Tavern, Toronto, ON, Canada [Tickets]
15th – The Pike Room, Detroit, MI, US [Tickets]
16th – Bottom Lounge, Chicago, IL, US [Tickets]
17th – 7th St Entry, Minneapolis, MN, US [Tickets]
20th – Fortune Sound Club, Vancouver, BC, Canada [Tickets]
21st – The Crocodile, Seattle, WA, US [Tickets]
22nd – Holocene, Portland, OR, US [Tickets]
24th – Independent, San Francisco, CA, US [Tickets]
25th – The Casbah, San Diego, CA, US [Tickets]
27th – Troubadour, Los Angeles, CA, US [Tickets]

June
7th – Field Day, London, UK

Uku – “Intension” EP (Audio)

UKU-michael-algebraiczny

Photo: Michael Algebraiczny

Polish producer, instrumentalist, songwriter and vocalist, Lukasz Plenikowski a.k.a. Uku is a newcomer to the EDM world and is certainly off to a great start. Under the moniker of Typewriter, he released the post-rock electronica track “Flood,” and later moved on to write several soundtracks for short feature films. Now with his debut EP Intension, he continues to explore those undefinable electronic sounds and features two remixes of “Forest 5am” by Kidkanevil and label mate Yoggyone. Check out the EP teaser below, which can be preordered from Eklektik Records.

At Home with Little Dragon (Video)

little-dragon-klapp-klappThis makes us very happy, especially after hearing “Twice” on Being Mary Jane a few weeks ago (yes, a guilty pleasure). Branding company Yours Truly have put together this teaser, where we get an intimate snapshot of Little Dragon in their communal Gothenberg home. The more you learn about this band, the more captivated you become by their authenticity. Their lives take different forms and they adapt according to the shape, which simply adds to their cohesiveness. Their fourth album, Nabuma Rubberband is set to release this spring and from the jazzy intro to “Klapp Klapp,” featured on the video below, we can’t wait!

Siji – “Home Grown” (Video)

siji-home-grownIn this visually gorgeous EPK, British-born, Nigerial singer/multi-instrumentalist Adé Siji introduces himself and the music for his third album, Home Grown, scheduled to release in the spring of 2014. This EPK not only introduces him to new listeners but also appears fresh to those who are already familiar. Intimately shot and capturing images of the various places that represent home, Siji walks us through the process behind of Home Grown, which for Siji was an act of realigning himself with his roots, exploring organic sounds to bring the pulse of Nigeria to the forefront. Featuring songs “Lagos Lullaby,” “This Must Be Love,” “Children of the Sun,” and “Ferese” all in that soothing, Siji kind of way. Through this exploration, he began work on the documentary Elders Corner, which looks at the history of Nigeria told through the lives and careers of the nation’s music legends. It is currently in post-production to be released this year also. Stay tuned for more updates on this release. But in the meantime, watch the video below!

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