As we count down the days till Christmas, you had to get another special guest in to curate our ever popular Cloud 9 playlist. This time we have the pleasure of hosting Taliwhoah, a singer/songwriter originally from North London, currently residing between the U.K. and the USA. For the last two years, she has been releasing a series of tracks and released a solo project which can be found on my personal SoundCloud page. In her own words, “My sound has been inspired by my experiences and I love to tell my truth over varied compositions. I’m a huge lover of music and I love discovering new artists to help narrate the moments of my life.”
When we hit up Tali, we knew that we could expect something special and DAMN did she come through with a special 2016 round up piece; “I’m not too sure about everybody else, but 2016 has been a very intense and turbulent time for me. And as it comes to a close the noun I would use to describe my overall mood and outlook toward the past year is “Melodramatic“.
“As some of the whirlwind events come to a calm and some new chapters commence, all I quiet honestly want to do right now is roll up, wind down and reflect; for me personally right now these 9 tracks from the ‘Cloud of Sound’ are just a few songs that help highlight this aura and assist the atmosphere.All the artist’s listed you may be familiar and some are uprising stars you should definitely get better acquainted with. They each have very eclectic styles and genres to fit all your medley of moods. I hope you all enjoy my playlist entitled:
1. a sensational dramatic piece with exaggerated characters and exciting events intended to appeal to the emotions.”he gloated like a villain in a Victorian melodrama”
2. a historical play interspersed with songs and orchestral music accompanying the action“.
So sit back, plug-in and relax as we present;
L Ø S T C U L T U R E | Cloud 9: 053.
1. Roy Woods – Gwan Big Up Urself
OVO‘s Roy Woods hit record continues the island-tinged sounds hinted at on Drake‘s VIEWS, using some steel drum-like percussion, and with Roy adopting a dancehall-influenced vocal delivery. The song, from his surprise project Waking At Dawn, also came with a sick accompanying video. Filled with Jamaican vibes, the OVO Sound crooner’s new visual finds him dancing and lounging in a restaurant, barbershop, and parking lot, while surrounded by some bad tings. Directed by Christo Anesti and Glenn Michael, the clip also features an evening party full of grindin’ and whinin’.
2. Sonder – Too Fast
Sonder have been impressing critics and fans alike with their wondrously downtempo, soul-led works, and with the release of their fourth track, ‘Too Fast‘, making us fall in love all over again. The three at work, Atu, Dpat, and Brent Faiyaz, prove again to be a formidable team, and, though this new track is considerably shorter than the others they have, it’s just as good and perfectly surreal. The trio have found their lane and proven that they have great chemistry together. Their forthcoming EP will certainly be one to look out for.
3. Childish Gambino – Redbone
‘Redbone‘, taken from Childish Gambino’s latest project Awaken, My Love!, is a full-blown funk slow jam, parses love, lust, reconciliation, generations of black soul, and wokeness. The slapping bass is reminiscent of Funkadelic and Bootsy Collins; the licks melt slowly under his pitched-up vocals. It’s maddeningly familiar yet distinctly warm. After winding up steadily, the song—almost minimalist in composition—closes in a blitz of reverbed synth chords, piano accents, and ambient tones. It’s a sequence that lulls to a trance, then snaps alive. “You better believe in something,” Glover sings, prodding you to decide what exactly that is.
4. NAO – Fool to Love
NAO‘s ‘Fool to Love‘ is rife with smooth horns, chopped-up drum sections, and NAO’s quick to mesmerize crooning, itself an instrument unlike any else. The Disclosure collaborator’s warbly vocals have this scratchy anchor to them that works as a sort of double-edged blade; her songs are both totally driven by soul and rock influences from the past but they never languish there. Instead, NAO propels her sound eons into the future. Like its predecessor ‘True to Love‘ will convince you you are cooler than you are and that it should be shared with the world, so don your sunglasses and drive around in the sunshine with this track turned up high.
5. Jai Paul – Jasmine
It’s been so long since playful UK singer/songwriter Jai Paul‘s gob-smacking debut single ‘BTSTU‘ emerged [it began floating around as a demo in 2010] that you started to wonder whether he actually planned on making any more music. That’s where ‘Jasmine‘ comes in. A tantalizing, darkly-shaded slice of echo-pop that’s reminiscent of Daft Punk‘s Discovery stunner ‘Something About Us‘, Jai Paul’s new single is as sonically disorienting as what preceded it, with a warped bass thud and slinky, submerged synth lines gorgeously suffocating JP’s own chopped-up croon.
6. Sinead Harnett feat. GRADES – If You Let Me
Sinead Harnett came storming into the heart space with her new track and video for ‘If You Let Me‘ featuring London producer GRADES. Whether you call it future R&B or just straight R&B, ‘If You Let Me‘ is what rhythm and bass are made out of- slow jams that hit you in that deep place. Grinding bass lines; lumbering beats stumble and cling to Harnett’s words; her lyrics about as potent as her delivery; wanting; soul searching. The beat keeps coming back for more like yang for yin, a perfect pairing of the sexes. No doubt, this track is irresistibly sensual.
7. H.E.R. – Losing
We know very little about H.E.R., an R&B vocalist that we’d suggest you better get familiar with, but her debut EP, H.E.R Volume 1, has already showing signs of an eminent campaign ahead. The singer has gained support from some big hip-hop names for the body of work, which isn’t surprising, especially with the introductory track, ‘Losing‘, proving to be highly addictive from the very beginning. The soul-embedded vocals are what shine on both of our favourites from the body of work, and, alongside hat-heavy, contemporary hip-hop production, her tantalising R&B sound shines.
8. Abra – CRYBABY
For a while now, Abra, the Atlanta-based new-wave goth-soul singer, has been the most promising part of the anarchic lo-fi rap collective Awful Records. And now she looks to make good on that promise. Abra has signed with True Panther, and her single ‘CRYBABY‘, which sounds like a ghostly, damaged take on Soul II Soul’s silky late-’80s R&B-house. Here, her R&B vocal delivery never sits still, fluctuating from the foreground to the back of the Miami Freestyle beat, unexpectedly gliding into harmonies as she refuses to shoulder her lover’s burden. Abra’s songs are the most subdued strain of intense, and that’s all they need to be when she’s singing for herself.
9. Tim North – Full Well
Toronto never ceases to amaze, and Tim North aka Young Timothy is another proof of that. The young artist released his latest single, ‘Full Well‘, which features production from Urs Truli, who delivers a relaxed instrumental that is the perfect base for Tim to lay down his smooth vocals.
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