Well doesn’t time fly. We are already into our second month of 2016 and we have already had a number of projects released. In the UK, Bonkaz made a statement with his Mixtape Of The Year and international star Rihanna dropped her latest album Anti exclusively via Tidal and Samsung. News also came that Kanye West would be releasing a new album entitled WAVES [formerlly known as SWISH] on February 11th with everyone from A$AP Rocky, Andre 3000 and Chance The Rapper set to be involved. With all this big news and new releases, it can be easy to forget about anything else but L Ø S T C U L T U R E is here to help jog your memory as we bring you our latest weekly round up of all things wonderful via Cloud 9 as we pick tracks from around the world that you need to hear. So all always, plug in, tune out and relax as we present;
L Ø S T C U L T U R E | Cloud 9: 015.
1. Future feat. Nas – March Madness
This week’s OVO Sound Radio show included a few exciting exclusives. Drake‘s ‘Summer Sixteen‘ may have been the highlight, but one of the most surprising moments of the evening was when Queensbridge rapper Nas began rapping over Future’s ‘March Madness‘. The track itself deserved a huge remix, but no Future fans would’ve expected one of the game’s most revered veterans to step up to the plate. Nas‘ inspired rapping here proves that there’s more continuity in hip-hop than conservative critics would like to admit. The legendary rapper giving his stamp of approval on one of Future‘s GOAT tracks unites two generations of hip-hop.
2. Javon Johnson – Oh Lord
Houston rapper Javon Johnson shared his latest EP The Outer Limits earlier this week. The five-track project paints a vivid picture of his world through a unique blend of vocal samples, rhythms, and lyrics. It plays like an end before the film begins, a broadcast from a mind broken by the violent, paranoid circumstances of Johnson’s Houston experience. One of the most attention grabbing tracks on the EP is the third track, ‘Oh Lord‘. The infectious loop works to pull listeners forward in a hypnotic fashion. But the mesmerizing beat is only the cherry on top, because Javon Johnson is perfectly capable to captivating listeners on his own.
3. IAMNOBODI – Found You
IAMNOBODI‘s has released a new composition, and it’s a stellar one indeed. The Soulection affiliate links up with his friend R.O.M for ‘Found You‘, effectively blessing all fans of his crew’s sound with the perfect way to start your week. This track is about as smooth as they come, and should connect with plenty of fans upon first listen. This is just one part of a wealth of music IAMNOBODI plans to shower us with this year [announcing that he’s “got like a gazillion songs that u need to hear this year“], so keep track and his upcoming project Wide Awake In A Dream is also on the horizon as well.
4. Finding Novyon – Leave It Alone
Finding Novyon had a big year in 2015 with the success of ‘Lots‘, his single with Allan Kingdom, and the largely positive reception to his full-length project, #TheFoodNetwork. January saw the return of the Minneapolis artist with the release of his Super Saiyan EP to kick off what should be another big year. With the exception of the final track ,the EP is produced entirely by 808Louie; the dark, bassy heavy production suiting Novy well. Opening the project with hard hitters, things take a turn towards the end with ‘Leave It Alone‘. The track shows that there are still layers to his sound to be uncovered, levels yet to be reached and much more to look forward to from the multi-faceted artist.
5. Baauer feat. Novelist & Leikeli47 – Day Ones
NY-based trap producer Baauer [of ‘Harlem Shake‘ fame] is releasing his debut album Aa through the LuckyMe label in March, and the second single from the project has just been unveiled entitled ‘Day Ones‘, a battle-ready fervor and brawny production. The high octance track kicks off with a roaring verse from South London’s Novelist who shows why he is the brightest young stars to come out of the UK scene. Then the verse duties are handled by New York rapper Leikeli47 who impresses with her vocal contributions, letting loose with some savage bars. Novelist joins the likes of Pusha T, M.I.A., Future & Rustie as guest features on Aa.
6. Throwing Shade – Hashtag IRL
Throwing Shade is Nabihah Iqbal, a London-based producer of electronic music and a radio DJ, on the internet station NTS. She’s known for wide-ranging sets that take in jazz, field recordings, vintage soul, experimental electronic, and whatever else she damn well pleases. Until now, her music had suggested a particularly beatific take on electro-funk, with new age keys and dubbed-out voices over crisp drum programming. But here, on the first cut to come from her upcoming EP House Of Silk, Iqbal takes off the gloves and throws a little shade. Referencing Kraftwerk’s ‘Computer Love‘and reminiscent of her vocal contribution to SOPHIE’s ‘Lemonade‘, ‘hashtag IRL‘ is a perfect execution of post-ironic wokeness.
7. Adrian Daniel – Pride
As music evolves, it becomes more and more blended. Rappers becoming singers and singers becoming rappers. Adrian Danielwants to keep it simple. An R&B artist born and raised in Brooklyn, the simplicity and vulnerability in his songs are what make Daniel stand out from the rest of the noise and his new track ‘Pride‘ certainly follows suit. Produced by Rudy Carino, the fusion of old and new seems to be cultivated, home grown, and refined in this song. With MJ style ad-libs, subtle instrumentation and even scatting, this is a fresh song that channels that clean grit from classic music, and presents it with the fresher sounds of a contemporary sound.
8. Katy B x KAYTRANADA – Honey
UK singer Katy B connects with producer KAYTRANADA for her new soulful new single ‘Honey‘, a sultry, smooth romp. Having already featured the groovy Four Tet and Floating Points assisted ‘Calm Down‘ this latest track has a chilled vibe thanks to KAYTRANDA‘s laidback production. Slow, lingering synth progressions intermingle with flighty synth flourishes while heavy tribal drums and quick bass stabs hold down the low-end. Katy B’s vocal has the consistency of honey, drizzling over the beat as she asks some seductive questions to goad. The singer will release her third album Honey on April 29th.
9. Meek Mill – War Pain
Shortly after Drake dropped his triumphant new single at the weekend, Meek Mill dropped another 4 track EP and on ‘War Pain‘, fires some very specific shots back at ‘Summer Sixteen‘ that suggest OVO might have a rat amongst their camp. First up, on the intro Meek makes reference to the Toronto hotel room situation that Drake talks about on ‘Summertime Sixteen‘, then he mentions Drizzy‘s “turned into Jay” line and his shots at Tory Lanez. With both being involved in one of the biggest musical “beefs” of the past few years, it will be interesting to see where this goes, with Drake set to release his long anticipated album Views From The 6 set to drop in April.