Songs of the Week 93: December 25 – December 31

hamilton-leithauser#5. Hamilton Leithauser + Rostam – A 1000 Times

Something different starts this week… at least something different for what I typically fall for. Some folksy-rock came across my doorstep this past week by way of Hamilton Leithauser + Rostam… and it’s what I’d call “adorable rock”. It’s like love song sung by a really drunk dude at the bar for his girl at the end of the night.

kali-uchis#4. Kali Uchis – Rush

Kali has a sound that strikes me as classic. This could be a track from the 80s, 90s, 00s… maybe it’s the jazz vibes that do it. Rush is my favorite track from her recently released Por Vida.

majik#3. Majik – Friends (Under the Influence)

I don’t know if it’s that the XX influenced a whole ton of new acts we’re seeing now, or if they just all share a sound that in my head is very similar. Majik’s got that the XX minimalism thing going on that really makes the vocals stick out and gives the song a pretty somber feel.

dvsn#2. Dvsn – Another One

I know I know, Spotify. It’s all I could find though, and frankly if you don’t at least have the free version of Spotify you definitely should. Dvsn was a new discovery for me this week, and Another One was the track that stuck with me.

khalid-brasstracks#1. Khalid & Brasstracks – Whirldwind //

This Khalid kid… man. Watch for him, as he has some major talent. So excited to see what he does in the next few years. This collab with Brasstracks for the #songsfromscratch project is fucking gorgeous. I love brass instruments, and the music Brasstracks created for this track is nothing short of gorgeous (especially the explosion of sounds during the chorus). However, it’s the lyrical play from Khalid that blows my socks off. From the moment that first verse ended I knew this was taking spot this week. The line just over 35 seconds in “I’ve written a thousand songs about you; I’m just hoping that one day you’ll hear it” is beautiful, catchy and the moment I knew that this song was killer.

Songs of the Week 39: December 6 – December 12

major lazer#5. Major Lazer Feat. Kali Uchis – Wave

I cannot quite wrap my head around Major Lazer. Their sound, their image, their rabid, cult-like fan base. I mean I kind of get it, but a bigger part of me feels like I just missed the boat. However I’ve really been digging a release they had a couple weeks ago that features the delicious vocals of Kali Uchis. I’m not a big reggae fan (which tends to permeate through a lot of Major Lazer music), but this one hits me just right.

angus dawson#4. Angus Dawson – Listen

Battles was Angus Dawson’s release this past week; but, being the first time I’d had the pleasure of listening to Mr. Dawson, Listen is actually the track that caught my attention. A superbly simple song, one made for late night music sessions on your back patio in candlelight.

jarreau vandal#3. Jarreau Vandal Feat. Brasstracks & Niya Wells – Nobody Else

This one grew on me. It’s weird and has unusual pacing (especially in the chorus). There’s some very heavy sounds that kind of seem unpleasant on the ears upon first listen, but somehow it all comes together after a few rounds… to the point where it’s addictive. Sometimes the unusual is good.

jodie abacus#2. Jodie Abacus – Hot Kitchen

Apparently the theme this week is weird music – but this one isn’t weird for sound. It’s weird for content. The lyrics are odd, but goddamn is it not catchy. The way he sings just begs to be danced too. Some kind of urban funk going on here.

kehlani#1. Kehlani – Tore Up

It will come as no surprise to anyone who knows me personally, but I rate all my music (in iTunes). It’s a scale from 0.5 – 5 (you can get iTunes to show half-stars). Most songs that I post on my weekly blog get a rating of at least 3 stars. I think there’s been maybe one 2.5 star song to crack the list ever, and that was probably a real slow week. On the flip side, it’s very rare that I rate anything over 4 stars. The top 10 list page of my blog are mostly all songs that sit at 4 stars, with maybe one or two being 4.5 and maybe one or two being 5. In my collection of 4000+ songs, I only have twelve songs rated at 5 stars and maybe another fifteen at 4.5. ALLLLLL this is to say, the second I finished my first listen of Kehlani’s Tore Up, it made the 4.5 star category. That’s unusual first a first listen. It’s good. Real real good.