Cloud 9 is back! After a week away, our popular “round up” segment returns with 9 new tracks from the past fortnight for you to get involved in. After covering the rise of new urban artists in Canada in Cloud 9: 010, we now focus our attention to familiar territory, by covering the whole world! As with every week, our staff have been delving into the depths of Soundcloud to find the most inspiring artists and exciting tracks. As we approach our teenage years [Cloud 9: 013. will be special!], this week edition is one of our most diverse and entertaining lists to date. So lets get into it as L Ø S T C U L T U R Epresents;
L Ø S T C U L T U R E | Cloud 9: 011.
1. Otik – Central Nerve
London producer Otik‘s bass heavy and percussive productions have gained him some significant well-deserved attention this year. His productions have received huge support from Keysound; he’s had tracks played by Swamp 81 and Wallwork & RZR on Rinse FM; and he’s played alongside Callahan on Radar Radio. His forthcoming two-track EP boasts 2-step and half-time rhythms and is out now via Push & Run. One half of the new EP is track ‘Central Nerve‘ which combines influences of early dubstep , two step, and deep house. Vocal sample float in and out through each skittering beat and filtered synth, coming together as a blend of uptempo rhythm and ample atmosphere, but also in the intangible, evocative of a place and time that is rarely heard.
2. Andersoon .Paak feat. The Game & Sonyae Elise – Room In Here
Anderson .Paak is a very busy man. Last week he released Link Up & Suede with Knxwledge as NxWorries, and followed it up with a release date for his upcoming album Malibu, which is due out on January 15th. All this, alongside his recent collaborations with TOKiMONSTA [‘Put It Down‘], GoldLink [‘Unique‘], and Blended Babies [‘Make It Work‘], show Anderson’s constant work rate to produce great material. Taken off Malibu, his latest release ‘Room In Here‘ is a smooth, mid-tempo track featuring fellow Cali native The Game and Sonyae Elise. With Anderson continuing to deliver strong tracks one after another, there’s no doubt that his new album will special from start to finish.
3. Gravez feat. JMSN & Elhae – Stay Tough
Atlanta producer Gravez has had his name buzzing on SoundCloud for the past year, due to his ability to create syrupy synths matched with hard-hitting and unrelenting bass-driven grooves. This week saw new track ‘Stay Tough‘ with support from JMSN and Elhae. JMSN’s vocals glide high above pulsating electronics, taking the track to new depths just before Dream Loud artist ELHAE, comes in with a wave of sultry, heart-wrenching emotions that falls down all across Josh Jar‘s razor sharp guitar-riffs. The record is aimed at people, specifically women, who might be going through struggles and have nobody to turn to. The title of the track is a recurring refrain throughout, which serves as a catchy reminder for listeners to remain strong in spite of their misfortunate situations.
4. Curtis Williams – March 14th Freestyle
Two 9‘s Curtis Williams digs deep and takes some time to reflect on his career for an introspective new track. While we still wait the follow-up to his April released Zip Skylark mixtape, the Atlanta producer/rapper drops ‘March 14th Freestyle‘. The hook-less cut finds Curtis Williams connecting with J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League. Alongside Williams’ lyrical soul-searching on the four minute freestyle, J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League‘s piano keys really drive the message home clearly. We’re also waiting on him and OG Maco to drop that OG Danco collab. They dropped a couple promising tracks over the summer, notably the Cookin Soul-produced ‘Money‘, but haven’t shared much since.
5. Jones – Hoops
East London’s Jones began her ascent toward becoming a recognised name on the strength of just a handful of singles, including emotive love song ‘Indulge‘ and the cavernous, AK Paul-produced ‘You‘. Jones has been praised for her undeniable talent and even gained support from Sam Smith who showed love via Instagram. Her new release, XO-produced ‘Hoops‘ is another classic; starting with a restrained, yearning vocal over a subtly dreamy instrumentation that’s vaguely reminiscent of the xx’s classic ‘intro‘. Her voice is undeniably silky and features a crucial element of vulnerability. The track touches on the heartbreaking subject of unreciprocated love, but the rhythm combined with the chorus makes it sound less somber and a lot catchier than one may expect.
6. Sol – Growing Pains
Sol has gone from strength to strength over the years, sharing the stage with the likes of Wu Tang Clan, Macklemore, Big Sean and Mac Miller. His new track ‘Growing Pains‘, certainly offers up a time for reflection. Dropped on his 27th birthday, the sentimental cut finds the Seattle MC detailing his up and downs over the years and reflecting on welcomed changes of heart [“the track is about learning from the past, living in the now, and working for the future”]. His longtime production pair, Nima Skeemz and Elan Wright (The Zillas), have always been instrumental in creating his sound, and with this new track, they replicate their winning formula. He even offers a few hat tips to Cameron and Juelz Santana’s ‘Hey Ma‘, along the way.
7. Fekky – Bitch Out The Bed
After blessing us his new mixtape Brandy & Coke as well as it’s lead video ‘Stop Check‘ last weekend, Fekky is certainly keeping busy. Another fan favourite off the project is ‘B***h Out The Bed‘ which showcases the raw talent of Fekky as one of the most underrated rappers in the UK scene. The track is unashamedly honest and sees the UK rapper talking about what he would do if a woman disrespected him. The track now also has an official video which dropped last week which can be viewed here. 2016 is looking to be a promising year for the “Bu Bu Bang!” rapper.
8. All Hail Noir – Tokyo (Charlie Heat Remix)
All Hail Noir is the music project of Myagi and Indigo Ford, who met in 2012 in their hometown of San Bernardino, California. Their musical inspiration was shaped and cut from the same fabric of hip-hop legends such as Timbaland, Missy Elliot, Prince, and Outkast and their current music releases reflect that. This week saw one of their most prolific tracks ‘Tokyo‘ get the remix treatment from Grammy nominatedG.O.O.D Music producer Charlie Heat. The remix serves as their first major release since All Hail Noir dropped their last project, Bleed[which featured the hit track ‘Afraid To Die‘]. With the two mutli-talented Californians moving into a new direction sonically and artistically, this should serve as a solid stepping stone for future drops.
9. Kehlani – Tore Up
After tearing up her European tour, including two sold out dates in London [in which she also brought out Stormzy!], Oakland native Kehlaniis certainly receiving the respect and adulation she deserves on Briitsh shores. While on tour, its clear that the music never stops as she drops her latest release ‘Tore Up‘ as we eagerly anticipate her debut album. The tune supports her vocal delivery through dusty piano elements and clever sample work. As she flows effortlessly over a stripped-down Jahaan Sweet produced instrumental, she shares her breakup blues and there is sense of raw emotion and honest behind every word. ‘Tore Up‘ serves as a drug ballad about Kehlani indulging in her vices to ease the pain that love can bring.