Monday, April 6, 2015

Songs you may have missed: Easter edition

Happy Easter, everyone! The sun is out and spring has sprung - and we all need new songs to sung. Hark a listen at this week's round-up of newbies.

1) Jamie xx - Loud Places
Taken from Jamie's first solo album, Loud Places begins with the downbeat cool of an xx track (not least because it features his bandmate Romy on voals). But the majestic, gospel-inspired chorus takes you to unexpected places. Lovely stuff.

2) Madeon - You're On (ft Kyan) - live session
Madeon makes the process of hitting buttons on a samplepad seem like the most exciting form of live performance ever invented, even though it's just... well, pressing some buttons on a samplepad. How does he do that?

3) Girlpool - Chinatown
Girlpool are Harmony Tividad and Cleo Tucker, two musicians from Philadelphia whose main selling point is that they make punk music without feeling the need for drums.

Their new single is a bit of a departure, though: A bluesy, meandering ballad that borrows the riff from Sheryl Crow's Leaving Las Vegas, it's shot through with a hesitant vulnerability most punks would sniff (glue) at.

4) Beyonce - Die With You
Sitting behind a piano, her hair braided and tucked into a baseball cap, here's pop megastar Beyonce singing a ballad for her husband on their seventh wedding anniversary.

I don't know about you - but if my wife had done this for me, I'd have taken her straight to the bedroom for a jolly big smooch. Jay Z just filmed it and put it on his new streaming site for some reason (money).

5) Rihanna - American Oxygen
A surprisingly mournful hymn to the American dream, Rihanna's latest song is a soulful antidote to the obnoxious (and obnoxiously catchy) Bitch Better Have My Money.

You have to sign up to Tidal to hear it properly - but here's a live version, performed at the March Madness concert over the weekend.

6) Janelle MonĂ¡e, Jidenna - Yoga
Ever wondered what Janelle Monae would sound like if she stopped pretending to be an anti-establishment robot from the future? Well, you're in luck.

The R&B star cuts loose on Yoga, a new track with rising MC Jidenna that will appear on The Eephus, a compilation EP starring the artists she's signed to her Wondaland label.

And it's pure filth... as Janelle Monae repeatedly instructs her lover: "Baby bend over, let me see you do that yoga."

The track also contains the best / weirdest lyric of the year: "You cannot police me, so get off my areola." Crikey.

7) Alesso - Cool (ft Roy English)
Perfectly acceptable Radio 1 daytime fodder, this is only notable for the video, in which Alesso plays a nerdy schoolkid who seduces his teacher. Wish fulfilment much?

8) George The Poet - Wotless
Another thought-provoking rap-poem from George The Poet, who charts his evolution from prodigal schoolboy to successful musician. It's an unflinching sketch of how black kids (especially those in a predominantly white, middle class environment) can feel pressured into becoming stereotypes.

Compelling stuff.

9) Mirror Talk - 1/M/T
Posted by the ever-reliable Nicola Roberts on her Tumblr page, this is shimmering, 80s-inspired synth pop from LA quartet Mirror Talk.

Produced by Tony Hoffer (M83, Beck), the title stands for One More Time.

10) Wax Tailor - Que Sera
I fell in love this sampladelic cut-up as soon as I heard it yesterday. Then I discovered it's a decade old... But what the hell. This post isn't called "songs you may have missed" for nothing.

11) Brandon Flowers - Can't Deny My Love
The only video you'll see this week that's based on the Puritan short story Young Goodman Brown, written by Nathaniel Hawthorne in 1835. And that's a guarantee.

So there you go. Hope you haven't overdosed on chocolate during the course of this blog post.

Oh, and I'm taking the rest of the week off. See you on April 13th.

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