This weeks edition of 5♥♬ has pop’s new femme fatale, two English electronic heavyweights combining in a remix, and Diplo’s stratospheric record crate.
Four Tet – Lion (Jamie xx remix)
With two of the darlings of the ambient strand of post-dubstep, “Lion” is a track almost guaranteed to be popular. Jamie xx teases out a some of the rumbling undercurrents to Four Tet’s understated production style and, to my relief, doesn’t use a single steel drum sample.
Sonnymoon – Nothing Thought
Anna Wise, the vocalist of Sonnymoon, contributed vocals to the one of the more interesting tracks (“Real”) on the current record du jour, Kendrick Lamar’s good kid, m.A.A.D. city, but her regular gig is making vaguely dancey electronic tracks with producer Dane Orr. “Nothing Thought” is odd in that it seems to contain three separate movements in its barely four minutes of length that are bridged by percussion into one coherent work. It’s refreshing to hear vocals in this genre that aren’t heavily processed; Wise’s is a voice that needs very little computer trickery. They’ll be playing the Mercury Lounge in NYC on December 21st, so check them out live.
Sky Ferreira – Sad Dream
I’m pretty sure that she’s not being marketed this way, but I see Sky Ferreira as a harder-edged Taylor Swift. She’s doesn’t have the slight twang that Taylor uses to rope in the cattle that is the “Pop Country” market in the U.S., but this video demonstrates the same aesthetic: rough hewn but handsome young men, old pickup trucks, driving in the evening while dust and strands of hay play lazily in the slanting sunlight. Cynicism aside (as well as hyperbole, because her normal production accompaniment is electropop), Ferreira seems poised to overtake Lana del Rey as the newest femme fatale in pop music. She’s even recently had her first Terry Richardson pictorial, the coming-of-age box to check for any edgy new entertainment personality.
Hot Sugar – Leverage feat. KOOL AD, Fat Tony, Lakutis & Nasty Nigel
While Araabmuzik does interesting things on an MPC by playing the pads REALLY REALLY quickly, Hot Sugar does interesting things on an MPC by assigning very weird samples to the pads and then massaging those samples into unlikely percussion. It’s strongly reminiscent of early 2000s Neptunes, when Pharell turned hip-hop on its head by doing drums in his own way. Featuring a slate of NY avant garde rappers, “Leverage” is representative of the new direction in this genre (where producers get the artist credit and lyricists are relegated to a feature credit). Trivia: Hot Sugar (aka Nick Koenig) is dating hip-hop darling Kitty Pryde.
Diplo – got stoned and mixed really old records for half an hour (mix)
The title really says it all for this week’s mix selection. I envy Diplo’s record library.