Wednesday, April 29, 2015

"S.E.A.N." Price Channels Stevie Wonder on Upcoming Pre-NIGGLETIUS Mixtape, Songs In The Key of Price (Duck Down Records)

"I did not rhyme off the beanie sigel truth beat PF [Cuttin] looped the original Chicago that is all..." @SeanPrice furiously Tweeted \from his Brownsville, Brooklyn home late Tuesday afternoon; seemingly alluding to instantly recognizable similarities between his latest Soundcloud-aided leak, "S.E.A.N." and Sigel's 2000 Kanye-produced title track, "The Truth," wherein he famously sampled Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young founding member Graham Nash's 1971 Folk-Rock protest piece, "Chicago." Following a flurry of sporadic Soundcloud-released loosies about every 2 weeks-month, Sean Price has finally announced his long-awaited Stevie Wonder-referencing Songs In The Key of Price mixtape, which is "coming soon" at a currently unspecified date; "Oh yeah that trash-ass artwork was done by a child the real mixtape cover coming soon lol!!!"

Just a matter of mere seconds into "S.E.A.N.," the sharp-tongued wordsmith behind super-group Random Axe makes it immediately apparent that he's back with a vengeance: "When it comes to hard-boiled, that me all day / Your sh*t got flaws, bum, and it sold no days / I'm the raw rap writer, reciter of raw raps / All that wack sh*t that you're talkin', just fall back." Little else is currently known about Songs In The Key of Price at press time, but it appears as though Sean Price's first unofficial full-length since Mic Tyson (2012) is an entirely separate "album" from his long in-the-works NIGGLETIUS CON QUESO!!! record. Songs In The Key of Price is just the latest in a long line of ingeniously named Sean Price-themed project titles: Jesus Price Supastar, Master P, Kimbo Price, Mic Tyson, Sean Madella, Donkey Sean Jr., The Price Is Right, "Sean Legend," etc.

Monday, April 27, 2015

"Refused Are F**king Alive:" Swedish Hardcore Legends Refused Return with First Album Single in 17 Years, "Elektra" (Epitaph/Burning Heart)

"It's not a reunion anymore. This is one of the most radical things we've ever done, both musically and lyrically," Refused frontman Dennis Lyxzén quipped upon the sporadic release of the Swedish Hardcore Punk band's first single in some 17 years, "Elektra." "Nobody wanted us to f*ck with the image of the band who makes a great album and splits up," drummer David Sandström added. "Nobody wanted us to dilute it. That actually provoked us." While it should have arguably been one of the formative Punk Rock records I 'cut my teeth' on as an angsty teenager along with Black Flag, The Misfits, and Minor Threat/Fugazi, for whatever reasons, I hate to admit, I only first heard Refused's genre-shaping magnum opus, The Shape of Punk to Come just a few years ago; upon a first listen, "Elektra" follows in line with what Rolling Stone sums up as a seamless "fusion of Hardcore, Techno, Jazz, and Hip-Hop," and to my well-trained ear, even evokes sonic undertones of apparent influences Black Sabbath and Nine Inch Nails.

Refused notoriously broke up just months after releasing their 1998 masterpiece, The Shape of Punk to Come upon the unsuspecting world, made up and re-formed for an all too brief 2012 reunion tour... after which it was all seemingly over, and then, quietly fired long-time second guitarist Jon Brännström a couple years ago. Aside from yesterday's (then) head-scratching "THERE'S NO ESCAPE" viral message yesterday, Refused's triumphant comeback album Freedom comes with little to no prior warm-up press. "Freedom goes a step further by incorporating the wide-ranging influences that have shaped each band members' personal tastes;" secretly recorded along with Arcade Fire producer Nick Launay and Pop-minded Swedish super-producer and long-time Refused fan, Shellback who helped the band co-write album opener "Elektra" and "366." Just a matter of hours after Refused's initial album release announcement, Freedom is already available for pre-order from band-sanctioned Kings Road Merch web-store in a number of multi-formatted CD/LP bundles ranging in price from $15.99-56.99.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Dad Vibe Productions Presents: Haley Joel Osment Ruthlessly Portrays Jonwayne In "Minerals & Gems" Video (Jonwayne Is Retired EP)

"It's been four months since Jonwayne graced our pages with "Good Samaritans." And if you ask me, it's been four months too long. Seemingly disappearing off the face of the Earth (see: he deleted his Twitter posts), fans were left in the dark when it came to the talented emcee's next move – if there was one to begin with," 2dopeboyz post-master Shake lamented in a recent piece published early Wednesday morning. Jonwayne has essentially emitted nothing but radio silence from his assorted social media feeds since around January 2014, following the abrupt end of his 8-part Wayniac Mondays freestyle series and his apparent separation from estranged long-time label, Stones Throw Records. However, @jonwayne abruptly re-surfaced from his self-imposed exile late Tuesday night into early Wednesday morning to compose and share the following, rather cryptic, ALL CAPS Tweet:




It would seem as though Jonwayne is either planning a comeback, sudden retirement, or fingers crossed... maybe just planning to retire the "Jonwayne" persona for a newly-updated rhyming pen name; while details are currently scarce, it would appear that his latest mysteriously titled EP, Jonwayne Is Retired, will see an April 28th release on Dad Vibe Productions or Authors/The Order Label; with a little tech-savvy Internet sleuthing, it would appear as though producer and recording engineer Daddy Kev, video director Ryan Hawkins, and seasoned actor, Haley Joel Osment of Sixth Sense and pseudo-Always Sunny fame are all involved with Jonwayne Is Retired EP in some way, shape, or form. Osment portrays a couple demented versions of Jonwayne as he convincingly raps along with "Minerals & Gems" while effortlessly floating underwater and within an unearthed dusty ol' mine-shaft, which somehow leads to an increasingly awkward shouting match between the two mouth-breathing/submerged split personalities of Haley Joel Osment portraying a (possibly) soon-to-be retired Jonwayne. According to its iTunes pre-order listing, Jonwayne Is Retired EP will consist of four previously unreleased tracks in addition to "Minerals & Gems:" "Beacon," "Dirty Dan," "30,000," and "Green Light" featuring Jonwayne's former Stones Throw label-mate, Anderson Paak.

"Let me begin by descending my hands into the essence
Feet are rooted in soil using Atlas as leverage
I've been here since bacteria was bubbling
The world was just puddles and
Land mass was snorkeling forever, so let us
Prey upon these rappers eating lettuce
You bitches never ill enough to cypher in my presence
Wearing this food chain upon my neck
Equator on my hips, hold the earth inside my breast-t-t-t..."

- Jonwayne ("Minerals & Gems")

Monday, April 20, 2015

Long-time Friends Iron & Wine & Ben Bridwell Premier "No Way Out of Here" on Letterman (Black Cricket/Brown Records)

While I've never really been a humongous (read: "huge") Band of Horses fan, I can still however, respect their niche singer-songwriter aesthetic, and I can still remember the first time I heard their flawless modern day Folk-Indie Rock "power-ballad," "The Funeral:" on an episode of MTV's ill-fated pseudo-reality series, My Life As Liz, which Kid Cudi would later go on to expertly sample and rhyme atop on his A Kid Named Cudi mixtape. Around the same time, I can also recall first hearing soft-spoken bearded singer-songwriter, Iron & Wine aka Sam Beam's critically-acclaimed mariachi-tinged In The Reins EP (2005) recoded with Tex-Mex Indie Folk band, Calexico; Iron & Wine would gain wide-spread notoriety with his stripped down cover of The Postal Service's "Such Great Heights" that would go on to appear on both the Garden State soundtrack and within a kaleidoscopic M&M's commercial. "I did a record of covers with Ben Bridwell from Band of Horses. He and I grew up together, so we've been trying to find the time to do something together," Beam nonchalantly revealed to Billboard in a February-published interview supporting his Archives Series, Vol. 1 odds-and-ends compilation.

"This is truly a 'full circle' moment for me... I've always wanted to sing together [with Sam] and I finally have that dream realized. I couldn't be more excited to continue this project at the upcoming shows to take it even further, while playing some of out original songs together," Band of Horses frontman Ben Bridwell excitedly added as per a Band of Horses-sanctioned press release. Sing Into My Mouth is reportedly composed of 12 familiar and lesser known covers selections "reminiscent of more than 15 years ago when [Ben & Sam] used to mail each other cassettes and CD's of music [they] were into." Iron & Wine & Ben Bridwell have managed to thoughtfully re-imagine their own unique covers of songs originally performed by Talking Heads, Bonnie Raitt, Sade, Marshall Tucker Band, El Perro del Mar, and seven additional note-worthy musicians. Beam & Bridwell unexpectedly appeared on Letterman late last week to perform "(There's) No Way Out of Here," which was "originally recorded by 70's act Unicorn, but better known as the lead single from David Gilmour of Pink Floyd's 1978 solo debut;" to coincide with their network TV debut, Iron & Wine & Ben Bridwell unleashed 2 full-length streams of "No Way Out of Here" and sultry R&B songstress Sade's "Bulletproof Soul" ahead of Sing Into My Mouth's soon forthcoming Friday, July 17th world-wide release on Beam & Bridwell's home-grown label imprints, Black Cricket/Brown Records.

Friday, April 17, 2015

Stereogum & INGRID, Volym 2 Present: Peter Bjorn & John - "High Up (Take Me to The Top)"

"We are over the moon to announce the first new original Peter Bjorn and John track to be released since 2011 is premiering TODAY on [Stereogum] - It's EXCLUSIVELY [featured] on INGRID Vol. 2 compilation, taken from our forthcoming album sessions written with Patrick Berger. Take a listen now!!!" Peter Bjorn & John ecstatically wrote in a quick personalized Soundcloud note included along with their comeback single, "High Up (Take Me to The Top)." It's the dreamy Swedish Indie Pop trio's first taste of proper new material released since their last critically-acclaimed four-year-old, and one of my personal favorite albums, Gimme Some; while seemingly remaining absent from the spotlight all together, Peter Bjorn & John actually spent the better part of 2012 diligently upstarting their own home-grown label collective, INGRID along with fellow Swedish hit-makers Lykke Li, members of Miike Snow, Teddybears founder Joakim Åhlund, Coco Morier, Tomas Nordmark, Jonas Torvestig, and manager Niklas Hallberg.

"The song itself is based around a series of loops – a few layers of grooving percussion, occasional feedback, toy piano flourishes, and LCD Soundsystem-esque bass squelches under the hook," Rolling Stone described with their accompanying "High Up (Take Me to The Top)" write-up; a bold genre-blending track which I would almost liken to "Young Folks" cohort Kanye West or their staggering Mick Boogie-assisted 2009 beat-laden Re-Living Thing remix album. Although Peter Bjorn & John's surprise comeback single would appear to stem from the sessions recorded for their long-rumored PBJ7 album, it's currently available within their limited edition Record Store Day exclusive 2xLP INGRID Volym 2, which will become available in small quantities in participating record stores nation-wide come day-break. Happy crate-diggin', my friends and please, go support your local record store... or IMMEDIATELY alert your parents or grandparents, if you're not exactly sure what a "record" is (tisk tisk)!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Hudson Mohawke Skillfully Inter-weaves D.J. Rogers' "Watch Out for The Riders" Sample Into J Dilla-esque "Ryderz" (Warp Records)

"When myself and Lunice did the TNGHT project, it was not even intended for release. That's basically why we decided to put it on hiatus for a while, because we felt like — without wanting to sound too arrogant — what that record spawned became kind of a parody genre," Scottish Electronic producer and Kanye affiliate Hudson Mohawke recently lamented to Pitchfork's Jeremy Gordon in their newly-published This (and This... and That Too) Is a Hudson Mohawke Production spotlight featurette. "That's why we wanted to refocus on our own projects. So we haven't quit the project, but there won't be anymore TNGHT music until both of our solo records are released," he continued, seemingly alluding to his soon-to-be-released "solo" album, Lantern. Unlike his typically borderline clustered Hip-Hop-tinged productions, on HudMo's latest "leaked" Lantern single, "Ryderz" he's managed to dial it back a few notches, giving all of its complex, masterfully layered elements sufficient room to breathe.

"It sounds like a Marvin Gaye show in space... It sounds like getting f*cked up with a robot Prince [or] a bubble bath in a hot-tub full of champagne," Thump wordsmith Angus Harrison wrote in his ecstatic Monday track review. Hudson Mohawke appears to have sampled the buttery smooth vocal refrain from D.J. Rogers' Soul-drenched 1973 Shelter Records crate-diggin' cult classic, "Watch Out for The Riders." Although before "Ryderz" reaches its mid-point, HudMo boldly decides, for whatever reasons, to viciously rip and shred Rogers' vocal into a million jagged, self-destructive little pieces; but as okayplayer fittingly notes, "were "Ryderz" any longer, it would probably reach some sloppy, sad demise, but as it stands in perfect beauty." Thus, if "Ryderz" piques your interest whatsoever, I'd strongly recommend checking out Lantern's Irfane-featuring first single, "Very First Breath," as well as Hudson Mohawke's gritty critically-acclaimed Hip-Hop-laden posse cut "CHIMES RMX" (which sadly, won't end up re-appearing on Lantern when it arrives this upcoming June 15-16th).

Monday, April 13, 2015

Ratatat Unexpectedly Return from Five-year Hiatus with Pre-Coachella Single, "Cream On Chrome" (XL Recordings)

"We've been up in a beach house in Long Island recording for the past month... We have four or five songs in-the-works," Ratatat guitarist Mike Stroud revealed to Rolling Stone just about four years ago at Coachella 2011. "It's sounding new — much more aggressive than the last album. Lots of guitar that sounds like guitar, not keyboard," Stroud continued concerning the recording process behind their long-rumored tentatively titled "LP5." "About to play this set at Coachella. Check out our new single "CREAM ON CHROME" [fourth] song of the set," @ratatatmusic nonchalantly, and somewhat cryptically, Tweeted over the weekend preceding their late night Coachella 2015 set . It's Mike Stroud and bassist-percussionist E*vax (Evan Mast)'s first proper single in roughly five years; although an official release date has yet to be announced, Consequence of Sound additionally notes that Ratatat's new album "will arrive this summer through XL Recordings." "Cream On Chrome" was initially premiered online without any prior notice in the form of a largely still YouTube upload, which was then augmented with a companion 4-minute long live performance following their Saturday night set.

"Cream On Chrome" almost sounds like something along the lines of a slightly more beefed up, Rock-influenced, and a little less Electro-Dance-inspired version of modern French Disco-House innovators, Justice, which very well could be Ratatat's typical M.O.; as I've honestly, only heard their impeccable Ratatat Remixes, Vol. 1-2 (2004-07) and their Kid Cudi & MGMT-assisted smash single, "Pursuit of Happiness" from Cudi's Man On The Moon: The End of Day (2009). However, in any case, it would seem as though Ratatat are back with a vengeance from their self-imposed five-year hiatus since their Coachella performance, they've uploaded the full-length studio version of "Cream On Chrome" to iTunes and it would seem XL Recordings plan to unveil their proper "LP5" release date soon enough, as well. In the meantime, I would strongly recommend attempting to track down your personal own copies of Ratatat Remixes, Vol. 1-2, which feature 28 critically-acclaimed Indie Electro-Rock-tinged remixes of tracks from everyone from Dizzee Rascal to Entourage-featured emcee, Saigon.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Tyler, The Creator Recruits Charlie Wilson, Chaz Bundick & Cole Alexander (The Black Lips) for Cherry Bomb Single, "F***king Young/Deathcamp"

Tyler, The Creator has taken a page from his Odd Future cohort and one-time "little brother" Earl Sweatshirt's playbook by announcing that he'll surprise release a new album, Cherry Bomb just a mere three days ahead of it's planned Monday April 13th digital release; within a matter of hours, he managed to strategically unleash two previously unreleased album tracks lifted from Cherry Bomb, "F***king Young/Perfect" and "Deathcamp." "THANK YOU CHARLIE WILSON, CHAZ BUNDICK [Toro Y Moi], AND COLE [ALEXANDER] FROM THE BLACK LIPS FOR YOUR CONTRIBUTIONS TO ["F***KING YOUNG/DEATHCAMP"]" @fucktyler frantically Tweeted soon after the pair of tracks were initially uploaded to his newly-launched app. GOLFMEDIA. Although, according to a trail of information accidentally "leaked" along with the album's iTunes pre-order, it appears as though Wilson's G.O.O.D. Music label boss, Mr. Kanye West will supposedly showcase his talents on one of Cherry Bomb's currently untitled 13 tracks, along with former "Barry Bonds" and "See You In My Nightmares" rapping partner, Lil' Wayne.

After experiencing a few minor technical SNAFU's, Tyler, The Creator uploaded his Wolf Haley-directed tandem video presentation for "F***king Young/Deathcamp," which okayplayer labels as "one of the smoothest, most finely-polished offerings we've heard from the 24-year-old rapper." It's a playful sun-soaked clip that honestly, has more in common sonically with D'Angelo's 1999 Neo-Soul single, "Left & Right" recorded with Method man & Redman, rather than his prior frantic Busta Rhymes speed-rap-leaning work. Preceding Tyler's getting forcefully thrown out of Moon Theatres (triple feature), the soundtrack's focus suddenly shifts to "Deathcamp," which I would say is more in line with Pharrell's Funk-Rock Hip-Hop side-project, N*E*R*D. Although it's very brief, the second half of Haley's video treatment highlights Tyler, The Creator (dressed like Cherry Bomb's cover star) in a rather epic Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome-style high-speed go-cart chase through the barren Nevada desert; leading up to a fiery over-the-top cinematic explosion because... of course - ha!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

True Panther Sounds Presents: Tanlines' Thinly-veiled Netflix Homage, tanlinesinternet or "TANFLIX" (Interactive Band Website)

"Having a band website in 2015 is kind of pointless. If someone wants to know when we’re playing or what we're doing, they can get that information from social media or sites like Songkick, but you still have to have [an official website]," Tanlines percussionist Jesse Cohen recently told Billboard. "I was thinking about how we could make something relevant to how we actually use The Internet, and I was thinking about how much time we spend on the menu page for Netflix trying to figure out what movie to watch," he continued; Cohen is of course, referring to Tanlines' newly-revamped band website, which appears to be a thinly-veiled homage to Netflix's almost instantly recognizable layout. Jesse Cohen and fellow bandmate Eric Emm seemed to be pretty nonchalant as to how Netflix might have reacted once their site went live, even considering the fact that "half the links point you to sign up for Netflix;" although "finding out that @netflix [loved] was definitely the *highlight*" of @tanlines' site launch day. It all appears to be part of an elaborate roll-out for Tanlines' early 2013-recorded sophomore album, Highlights, which is currently available for pre-order through label True Panther and various online platforms ahead of its fast-approaching May 18-19th release.

Tanlines' new cutting-edge website was designed by Highlights graphic designer Teddy Blanks along with Beggars Group's in-house web design team accented with Netflix-reminiscent descriptions penned by Emm himself (ie: Tanlines' latest single, "Invisible Ways:" "Stuck in Pittsburgh with no computer and no sunlight, the band reverted to an old-fashioned approach: writing on guitars and drums"). Tanlines' Netflix-esque categories boast inventive titles like "Because You Listened to Highlights," "Buddy Road Trip Movies," "Great Second Acts," "Tanlines North American Tour," "Movies and TV That You Might Not Have Realized Are About Jews," "No Effects with Jesse Cohen," and last, but certainly not least, "American Actors Doing British Accents." Along with Tanlines' upcoming tour dates, working links to band-selected Netflix titles, Jesse Cohen's star-studded 32-episode No Effects podcast, and a collection of Tanlines' past hits, additionally features the world-premier of Jesse Cohen & Eric Emm's self-described "jangly, [Roy] Orbison-inspired track," "Invisible Ways." It's the second single lifted from Tanlines' soon forthcoming second full-length, Highlights, which they're hoping will fare as well as blockbusters Terminator 2: Judgement Day, Frasier, A Different World, and Pulp Fiction.

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Culturebox Presents: Sharp-tongued, Masked Yasiin Bey aka Mos Def Expertly Re-raps MADVILLAINY Era DOOM, Oh No & J Dilla Beats & Rhymes (BEYONDOOM "EP" Playlist)

"A great US Hip-Hop singer pays tribute to Daniel Dumile, better known as MF DOOM, an other[worldly] Hip-Hop artist, from the New York City underground scene. But who's behind the mask?" French Télévision network Culturebox wrote along with a series of seven cryptic YouTube videos quietly uploaded between December-February of last year. The mysterious masked wordsmith is eventually revealed to be Yasiin Bey aka Mos Def, who's likely the only person on planet Earth who can honestly say he's worked alongside Mark Wahlberg, Donald Sutherland, Jack Black, and MF DOOM. Culturebox's BEYONDOOM EP-length playlist isn't exactly the first time Mos Def has expressed his fanboy-like admiration for DOOM; a few years ago, he went as far as to "bet a million dollars on DOOM against Lil' Wayne" in a battle rap scenario, supposedly masqueraded as the Metal-Faced Villain after he cancelled a series of appearances initially billed as joint concerts, in addition to a number of other viral displays of mutual admiration.

BEYONDOOM is however, Yasiin Bey's first quasi-release since unveiling his short-lived G.O.O.D. Music-backed Top 40 Underdogs freestyle series (2012). MADVILLAINY era DOOM fan favorites "Beef Rapp," "Accordion," "Strange Ways," "Curls," "ALL CAPS," "Rainbows/Fancy Clown/Fazers," and "Mayo Clinic" produced by J Dilla (Oh No's "Move, Part 2" beat) are all contained within Culturebox's BEYONDOOM EP playlist; the bulk of which, most notably "Accordion," he's been performing live since around 2009-10. It's pretty amazing something this awesome has remained largely unseen since February or as okayplayer blatantly put it: "How does something like this stay so damn hush for so long? Oh, you say the rap blogosphere would implode if it ever made its way across the pond?" While there are currently no signs of a new DOOM album or Yasiin Bey's seemingly shelved Mannie Fresh-produced OMFGODBKNOLA project, BEYONDOOM EP although, is available for download with a little bit of digi-diggin'.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Franz Ferdinand Team Up with 1970's Glam Rockers Sparks to Form "Pissed Off" FFS Supergroup (Domino Records)

"We thought "Take Me Out" [2004] was very cool, and wouldn't it be nice to say hello when they came to Los Angeles," Sparks frontman Russell Mael recently lamented to Domino Records concerning his newly-minted band with younger brother Ron and the entirety of Scottish Dance-Punk band Franz Ferdinand. "We met and decided then it would be great to do something together. We put forward a couple demos, one was "Piss Off." But they got swept up by everything, and it didn't happen at the time," Mael continued. Legend has it that FFS didn't fully reconvene until Coachella 2013 when Ron & Russell Mael ended up bumping into a tooth-aching Alex Kapranos frantically in search of a local dentist that they unanimously decided a "10-year gestation period for this idea was long enough." FFS' self-titled Domino Records debut was recorded late last year during a marathon 15-day recording stint, wherein the 6-man band really strived to make something completely new; "not Franz [Ferdinand] featuring Russell Mael or Sparks with Franz Ferdinand backing them," as quasi-frontman Alex Kapranos rather frankly put it. Upon my first listen to "Piss Off" earlier this week, the first comparison that immediately came to mind was a loose Beatles or Paul McCartney & Wings reference, which is really about as far as one can get from Franz Ferdinand's brand of infectious Dance-Punk or Sparks' formative 1970's Glam Rock. FFS' 12-track self-titled "debut" will see a release this upcoming June 8-9th through Domino Records; available in 2LP limited coloured vinyl and multiple CD packages, tech-savvy fans able to get their grubby hands on pre-ordered deluxe copies will be treated to four additional bonus tracks.