Monocle is back with their ongoing travel series, this time around the publication highlights the city that never sleep New York City. The Monocle Travel Guide to New York is a celebration of all that Monocle loves about the city.
Month: April 2019
Yesterday Kanye West announced that he was abandoning the name SWISH and changing the name of his album to Waves. Wiz Khalifa took offence to this and posted a few tweets stating that Kanye West should not name his album Waves due to it being disrespectful to incarcerated rapper Max B.
Read the exchange below:
The tweet that started it all:
— “#Waves the album formally known as Swish”
— “Please don’t take the wave.”
— “Max B is the wavy one. He created the wave. There is no wave without him.”
— “Im a wavy baby for sure and I’m not having it.”
— “He’s the reason I sing on all my songs. That’s the wave. If theres nothing wit that sound ITS NOT WAVY.”
— “Hit this kk and become yourself.”
Kanye Went then proceeded to fly off the handle:
— “First of all, you stole your whole s*** from Cudi.”
— “Your first single was corny as f***.”
— “You let a stripper trap you”
— “I know you mad every time you look at your child that this girl got you for 18 years.”
— “I am your OG and I will be respected as such.”
— “Don’t ever in your f****** life speak sideways about a n***a that’s fighting for us. I do this for all of us.”
— “I showed you respect as a man when I met you. You wouldn’t have a child if it wasn’t for me.”
— “Don’t even hint at mentioning me my family or my wife I am your OG”
— “Thank you for the extra promotion #WAVES available February 11th”
The rebuttal (Wiz):
— “KK is weed fool. Reason’s why your not wavy. Go bacc to Swish.”
The rebuttal (Kanye)
— “Man it’s a sad a day… Wiz lost 2 million followers since I tweeted I didn’t mean to either him like that.”
— “I’m happy that I now know that KK means weed… please excuse the confusion … now back to #WAVES”
Don’t forget about Amber Rose:
— “Awww @kanyewest are u mad I’m not around to play in ur asshole anymore? #FingersInTheBootyAssBitch”
— “Lol @kanyewest Now u wanna delete ur tweets cuz Muva has arrived? #TwitterFingers #UrGettingBodiedByAStripperNigga”
Things to note: Amber Rose is a SAVAGE…
The longest stable relationship I have in my life is with depression. We’re going 22 years strong out of the mere 25 years of living outside of my mom’s womb and I’m gunning for another few decades of living together. I can depend on my depression (which has now manifested into personification) to emerge at the most convenient of life circumstances and hinder any normal human function necessary to, er, living.
Battling depression this long has made me battle-weary, I’m acutely aware of how I will need to prepare for each episode. I can feel the stirrings months before actually descending into full-blown, catatonic depressed Rupa (she’s a lot of fun to hang out with) and can usually curb the worst of it before I lose all functionality. But, at least once or three times a year, I can’t stop myself from burrowing into the belly of the beast.
When I’m finally really in it a number of fun things happen:
- I sleep erratically
- I can’t remember anything which isn’t an exaggeration – I can make myself a meal, eat it, and 20 minutes later completely forget what was consumed
- Nothing gives me feelings of any kind. Joy, anger, sadness, neutrality, excitement, you name it and I will feel none of that. It’s a dense fog of emptiness where nothing can penetrate through
- I watch a nauseating amount of anime and play videogames for hours on end and not engage with any of it
- New music sounds even more dull than usual
- All I play is sad music at parties
My best days are what most people would call their worst. I wake up at -50% and hope to hit 0 by the end of the day where others can go from 20~100%. The hardest part, though, is knowing that my long-term likelihood of getting to that +20% range is arduously slim. The more I hear from friends and strangers that I will win my fight and one day it will get better irritates me beyond the scope of rationality. Depression is my other half. We’re symbiotic, a cute couple, so cute even my ex-boyfriend was jealous of it.
The number-one part about being this depressed as an adult is that you can’t even do your job. My work entails writing about music, think pieces, listening to and analyzing new music, and attending events / shows. But I can’t do it. Everything gives me anxiety and I can’t write, absorb new music, and any normal activity seems bothersome. All I can do is listen to old(er) music that I already know is good and enjoyable and proceed to obsessively dance to witch house.
This recent bout of depression, though, is one of the most crestfallen I’ve had in years. I’m at a crossroads of being unsure about career paths, a yearning for scenery change, being a recent woke woman of colour and my place in a society I feel uncomfortable in, and siphoning out friendships which are unsupportive and unhealthy. Digesting life, circumstances completely out of my control, actual situations I can’t simply work through feels impossible. And sometimes, it is impossible.
That’s the thing with severe depression. Your worldview is distorted and normal life is perpetually five feet in front of you no matter how you approach it. Music is the embodiment of nostalgic exes and depression is that asshole who comes around a few times a year to wreak havoc and piss off everyone around me. I’m still figuring out the angles, but until then I’ll be over here, forcing myself to listen to music and write but also playing too many video games (ahem, watching anime). Find me on Playstation and so we can continue to be URL friends but please, I beg of you, do not look into my Hulu recommendations.
American photographer Terry Richardson shot the British singer Rita Ora for the latest cover of Lui Magazine. The Lo-fi shoot shows Rita scantly clad, rocking pieces from german sportswear brand Adidas.
Pick up the new issue of Lui Magazine from newsstands now and check out some behind-the-scenes shots in the gallery above.
Rio de Janeiro is one of the few global cities that strikes a balance between cosmopolitan hub and natural wonder. As well its openness and unique mix of people, the city has a wide range of galleries, restaurants, and world-famous beaches. Monocle’s new travel guide will help you discover every pocket of the city.
The enigmatic Martin Shkreli is back giving interviews where he ponders whether or not to destroy the $2 million dollar Wu-Tang record he purchased earlier this year. Talking with Allie Conti of Vice, Shkreli weighs the possibility of destroying the record entirely, as well as other options:
“With the Wu-Tang album playing in the background, Shkreli says he vacillates between wanting to destroy the record and dreaming of installing it in some remote place so that people have to make a spiritual quest to listen. ‘I’m not just the heel of the music world,’ he says. ‘I want to be the world’s heel.”
Allie Conti later told Noisey about her take on the record (which only a handful of people have actually heard.)
“I barely got to hear it, because I was also interviewing him while it was on. From what I heard, it was definitely better than their last album, although I wouldn’t say it’s worth $2 million necessarily. I really hope Shkreli decides to release it to the public rather than destroy it, which is something he’s mulling over right now.”
Here are a few cringe worth excerpt from interview:
He used to chuck basketballs at the “facade of Pfizer’s world headquarters and get into arguments with the security guards there, describing his hatred of Big Pharma as an inspiration for his small company—the millionaire as underdog.”
He claims his scheme “can’t be Ponzi-like because the people he paid back with Retrophin stock profited: “The nutshell is that people were possibly misled into making a lot of money.”
During the interview “he opens a magnum of Bordeaux he says cost $15,000 and rolls around the vinyl floor on his hoverboard while taking $120 sips.”
Read the full article on Vice.
I am confident I will prevail. The allegations against me are baseless and without merit.
— Martin Shkreli (@MartinShkreli) December 19, 2015
Majid Jordan has just dropped a remix of the Peverelist hit song “Roll With The Punches”. The duo debuted the song during their mix on OVO Sound Radio show on Apple’s Beats 1 station. Listen below – their self titled debut is out February 5th preorder it now.
Listen: Raveena – You Give Me That
22 year-old New York-based vocalist Raveena has announced herself as a feminine force to be reckoned with on her debut single, “You Give Me That”. It’s a really smooth soul/R&B track reminiscent of Erykah Badu, Sade and D’Angelo. Pooling together a textured blend of soul, R&B and jazz that instantly leaves the listener wanting more.
“You Give Me That” is out now with Limited Health.
Rihanna lets loose the lead single from her anticipated upcoming album ANTI, a collaboration with Drake called “Work”. The track produced by Boi-1da, Vinylz and SEVN Thomas has a Caribbean inspired riddem that will no doubt all over the radio waves in the coming days.
Sadly “Work” can only be streamed via Tidal HiFi or purchasing the single on iTunes.
Rihanna – ANTI (Tracklist)
1. “Consideration” featuring SZA 2. “James Joint” 3. “Kiss It Better”
4. “Work” featuring Drake
5. “Desperado” 6. “Woo” 7. “Needed Me” 8. “Yeah, I Said It” 9. “Same Ol’ Mistakes” 10. “Never Ending” 11. “Love on the Brain” 12. “Higher”
13. “Close to You”
Leap Of Faith
I came across a quote recently that said “the destination is not what’s important; what’s important is the journey.”
We are urged throughout our life to be cautious and aware of our actions. But sometimes, we need to let loose, we need to take chances and risks. Trial and error is an important part of our social development and emotional growth. We can’t truly appreciate our successes without understanding failure.
So today I urge you all to try something new. It could be as small as taking a different route on your way home. Maybe you’ll find a new coffee shop or restaurant along the way. It could be as large as sky diving or climbing a mountain. It could be something that enhances your character like learning a new language or taking dance classes. Or even something that feeds your soul like volunteering.
Try something. Experience everything. Learn from your mistakes. Take a leap of faith!
Post originally appeared on our sister site SCL SCN.
VICE Autobiographies: Pusha T
In VICE Autobiographies, Pusha T talks about his rise in the music industry, the pivotal moment that lead to the dissolution of The Clipse, his relationship with his brother and the subject matter of his music.
Tune in to Vice’s Autobiographies series on Verizon’s go90 streaming service. Other artist highlighted: Vince Staples, Ty Dolla $ign, D.R.A.M., and many more.
Watch the trailer below:
British pop duo AlunaGeorge have just shared their new single, “I’m In Control,” a dancehall influenced track that features Jamaican artist Popcaan. “I’m In Control” will appear on the duo’s sophomore album, which is out this spring via Interscope (US) and Island (UK).
Follow AlunaGeorge here.
Best Hip-Hop Albums of 2013
2013 has been a huge year for Hip-Hop. We saw the release of some outstanding records, ate up the controversy surrounding Kendrick Lamar’s “Control” verse, enjoyed the many rants of Kanye West and debated over the June 18 showdown between Kanye West, J. Cole, and Mac Miller to name a few. But who had the best hip-hop album of the year? Find out in our list below.
10. J. Cole – “Born Sinner”
After all is said and done and the dust finally settles sometime after the June 18 releases of Kanye West’s Yeezus and J. Cole’s Born Sinner, most critics will be quick to point out Kanye’s unique progressive vision and make the claim that his stands as the better overall album — which might be true if that’s the way you judge things.
As a pure hip-hop experience, however, Born Sinner is a superior album that shows immense growth in Cole’s talents as a rapper and even more so as a producer. It’s far from perfect, but the North Carolina native has sharpened all his strengths on his sophomore outing and created a body of work that represents nostalgic appreciation as well as a refreshing outlook on a genre he’s clearly passionate about. Read the full Review: HERE
9. Dom Kennedy – “Get Home Safely”
8. Mac Miller – “Watching Movies With The Sound Off”
Never in my life have I ever watched a movie with the sound off but if the experience is anything like the level of the creativity and passion evident on Mac Miller’s sophomore album — I might hit the mute button next time I’m watching Bulworth.
Following his commercially successful but critically lukewarm 2011 debut album Blue Slide Park, Watching Movies with the Sound Off shows significant strides in Mac’s lyricism and beat selection. The result is a cohesive body of work that floats seamlessly from track to track with a head-bopping psychedelic vibe that runs all the way through. Read the full Review: HERE
7. Childish Gambino – “Because the Internet”
Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino has out done himself with ‘Because The Internet’. Glover has moved past music and past the concept album to create an interactive world for his fans to immerse themselves in through one of the most imaginative rollouts (movie and screenplay) in music ever.
The music is creative and no song is the same. They might seem fragmented, unconnected, and much like his actions over the past year, leaves the listener with many questions about what the artist meant and what it means to be alive today in the age of the internet. His lyrics are catchy, witty, and although the music is unconventional, it often reinforces the contemplative feeling that accompanies his work. Read the full Review: HERE
6. Tyler, The Creator – “Wolf”
Legions of high school fanboys salivating over every Odd Future release aside, a lot has changed for Tyler, The Creator in the two years since the release of his 2011 breakthrough album Goblin.
The 22-year-old has branched out and appeared on tracks with mainstream hip hop artists including Game, Pusha T and Waka Flocka Flame. His buddy Earl Sweatshirt is back from Samoa, he’s got a show on Adult Swim and people have finally stopped using “Yonkers” as the only example of his work.
Tyler’s latest offering, Wolf, is not only a reflection of his growth as a rapper and producer but as a creative entity trying to hold on to his artistic integrity as his popularity continues to rise. Read the full Review: HERE
5. Drake – “Nothing Was The Same”
On his critically acclaimed sophomore album, Take Care, Drake proved his signature blend of rap and R&B as a formula for success and his work on the project resulted in numerous accolades — including a Grammy Award for Best Rap Album.
The Grammy was not only a symbol of how far Drake had come from his days as a child star on the set of Degrassi, but it also showed a shift in the overall hip-hop landscape. Someone who conveyed superior rapping and singing abilities, coupled with honest lyricism grounded in stories about his own life, was able to break boundaries in the genre – far removed from content about the hardships of growing up in ghetto America.
It’s been nearly two years since Take Care, and Drake has since become hip-hop’s brightest star, surpassing the current success of icons like Jay-Z, Kanye West and even his mentor Lil Wayne.
His latest album, Nothing Was the Same, is a view from the penthouse, an ode to having finally made it and a statement that he isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.
Needless to say, the new album is also a musical departure from Take Care, as the slick R&B flavoured samples of Jon B. and Playa are largely dropped in favour of grittier Wu-Tang Clan beats that play an important role influencing the ‘90s hip-hop sound on certain tracks. Continue reading the full review: HERE
4. Kanye West – “Yeezus”
I’ve been struggling with this review for over two weeks. I’ve had discussion after discussion with friends and colleagues, analyzing the details of Yeezus ad-nauseum. The road behind me is littered with the bloody corpses of false starts and abandoned ideas. After some serious searching, I realized that I was trying to create a masterpiece of critical musical writing, sweeping and eloquent. I was trying to follow the all-encompassing model of grandeur Kanye West laid out in his magnum-opus My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy when I should have been looking right in front of myself and gone for the polar opposite, sleek and stripped-down approach West has employed on the dark, minimalist Yeezus.
Yeezus shares its skeletal form with West’s most divisive album, 808s & Heartbreak. But where that album was a desolate wasteland that found West pouring his heart out, Yeezus is an unrelentingly bleak record that finds West angrily amplifying his personality by lashing out at everyone.
West has proven time in and time out that he is a top-tier producer and Yeezus is no different. The sound of the album is one overflowing with aggression and rage, never letting up from the opening moments. Continue reading the full review: HERE
3. Pusha T – “My Name Is My Name”
Even after finding critical success with the release of his first official GOOD Music EP Fear of God II: Let Us Pray in 2011, Pusha T was still stuck in a transition period being less than two years removed from the last Clipse album Til the Casket Drops — the Virginia duo’s final project together before their current hiatus.
Despite having already paved a solo career for himself with GOOD Music, Pusha was still mostly being billed as member of Clipse rather than being recognized as the individual talent Kanye West believed him to be.
After Fear of God II dropped, Pusha still wasn’t getting much attention outside of Clipse diehards. Last year, he appeared on the GOOD Music compilation album Cruel Summer where the 36-year-old rap veteran was forced to share the spotlight with younger stars like Big Sean, Cyhi the Prynce and Kid Cudi.
Thanks in large part to the success of his second mixtape, Wraith of Caine, at the top of the year, Pusha’s position as one of the game’s finest lyricists was beginning to solidify. His album single “Numbers On The Boards” took him over the top and proved that a hip-hop song with a high level of word mastery could still attract a mainstream following.
Pusha has finally released his first full-length studio debut My Name Is My Name and the finished product is one of the most lyrically dense, furiously delivered and brilliantly produced pieces of hip-hop in recent years. Continue reading the full review: HERE
2. Chance The Rapper – “Acid Rap”
20 year old, Chicago MC, Chance the Rapper has been making quite a name for himself as of late. Last year, he dropped an incredible mixtape, titled 10 Day, during his own 10 day suspension from high school. He went on to tour with Childish Gambino and had a much buzzed-about set at this year’s South by Southwest festival. Capitalizing on his momentum, Chance dropped his second mixtape, amply titled “Acid Rap“ earlier this year. Acid Rap has taken the music world by storm due to innovative production and a breathtaking display of lyricism. The mixtape features guest appearances from Action Bronson, Childish Gambino, Ab-Soul, Twista, BJ The Chicago Kid, and more. Head over to ChanceRaps.com to download the entire mixtape for free.
1. Killer Mike and El-P – “Run The Jewels”
This daring hip-hop album features amazing production, accompanied by great rhymes. If you are fan of good hip–hop then you need this in your life. Run the Jewels‘ is available for free digital download via Fool’s Gold. Click the following link to download Run the Jewels.
Read our review: HERE
What was your favourite Hip-Hop album of 2013? Did we forget an album?
Listen: Shlohmo – Emerge From Smoke
Yesterday, the L.A based producer known as Shlohmo released this dark, ethereal track.If ever there was a song deserving to be featured on a True Detective’s trailer, this would be a top contender.
New to Shlohmo? Check out Rupa’s review of his latest EP, Laid Out.
– Mark @wkndhours
any given tuesday emerge from smoke new music Shlohmo
Last but not least, The Dreamer is a gem of a track that wraps up Anderson’s latest album, Malibu. It’s an anthem for millennials and all who can remember watching way too much TV back in the 90s. Nowadays, the youth have video clips on YouTube.
“And, who cares your daddy couldn’t be here Mama always kept the cable on. I’m a product of the tube and the free lunch
Living room, watching old re-runs.”
– Follow Mark on twitter
Common Projects SS16 Collection
New York-based luxury minimal footwear brand, Common Projects unveil its Spring/Summer 2016 offerings featuring outstanding colour pallets on their trademarked silhouettes. Additionally CP unveils a new variation of their Achilles Low by adding velcro straps.
Head over to Common Projects official site to view all the styles offered for SS16.
For Calvin Klein’s Spring 2016 underwear campaign, the American luxury brand has teamed up with some of the world’s biggest celebrities. The campaign features Justin Bieber, Kendall Jenner, FKA Twigs, Kendrick Lamar, Fetty Wap, and Abbey Lee Kershaw.
Check out the campaign below.
Shot by Ryan Deboodt during a two day kayaking trip, this film takes you on a journey through Tham Khoun Xe on the Xe Bang Fai River in beautiful Laos.
Tham Khoun Xe is a river cave carved by the mighty Xe Bang Fai River and is located in Hin Nam No National Protected Area in central Laos. At 7 km long and with an average width and height of 76m and 56m respectively, it is considered one of the largest active river caves in the world.
The Monocle Travel Guide to Bangkok
Monocle is absolutely killing it with their travel series. The Monocle Travel Guide to Bangkok will steer you to our favorite hotels and retailers, lesser-known neighborhoods, tasty restaurants and street-side bars where Bangkok’s bright young things party until the early hours.
The Monocle Travel Guide to Tokyo
The Monocle Travel Guide to Tokyo will navigate you through some of Monocle’s favorite corners of this vast metropolis. Expect to fall in love with the dazzling food, sumptuous shopping, and the most courteous residents you’ll ever meet.
Ex-One Direction member Zayn Malik has finally released his debut solo single “Pillowtalk” showcasing the new direction of his music. It’s certainly more provocative and grown up compared to the boy bands music and will no doubt resonate with new audiences.
“I think I’m pretty black and white about what it’s about, everybody has sex, and it’s something people wanna hear about. It’s part of everybody’s life, a very big part of life! And you don’t wanna sweep it under the carpet. It has to be talked about.” – Zayn
Watch the music video for the single above directed by Bouha Kazmi, starring girlfriend and supermodel Gigi Hadid.
Gigi Hadid One Direction Zayn Zayn Malik
Review: Savages – Adore Life
Adore Life is a confrontational record. From the instant one is exposed to its raw sounds and earnest sentiment, one thing remains clear: Savages have something to say, and they fucking mean it.
The title, Adore Life, is less of a title and more of a commandment from band lyricist and vocalist, Jehnny Beth. This, in itself, should serve as no revelation given the name of Savages’ debut record Silence Yourself, however there is a fundamental difference to their most recent release. “The last one was the problem,” Beth told journalist Laura Snapes during the recording of the album. “This one’s the solution.”
As Savages’ take on the solution, Adore Life naturally begins with ‘The Answer’, a driving declaration in the form of a ferocious three-and-a-half minute single. The associative music video, which itself is brilliant, is unrelenting from the opening line in which Jehnny Beth ponders the way sex can influence relationships.
“There are things I know we should Better not do, but I know you could Sleep with me And we’d still be friends Or I know
I’ll go insane”
As is the case throughout Adore Life, Savages take on love in a way that seems light-years away from the constellation of cliches that have been created, reused, and recycled over the years. From the perspective of Jehnny Beth, love isn’t simply a positive feeling, but rather a volatile chemical that must be respected and handled carefully at the risk of endangering others in the process. Beth doubles-down on the sentiment on the third track, ‘Sad Person’, in which the metaphor of love as a dangerous element is drawn again:
“Love is a disease The strongest addiction I know What happens in the brain Is the same as the rush of cocaine The more you have
The more you crave”
If love is the answer, then Adore Life is a record in which Savages grapple with their solution. The title track, ‘Adore’, serves as the album’s thesis, in which Jehnny Beth laments over her decisions in life, only to leave the listener with the lasting refrain “I adore life.” Faced with the finality of death, Savages scream back at the void as if to adore life while in clear defiance of its boundaries.
“I understand the undergency of life In the distance, there is an edge that cuts like a knife
Maybe I will die, maybe tomorrow, so I need to say
I adore life”
As much as Savages settled on love as the solution, the realization is one that seems to create equal parts anguish and hope. Looking at the lyrics of ‘Adore’ a little more closely, it is hard to ignore the hint made during the hook, especially after having heard the third verse.
“If only I had been more shy And hid every tear I cried If only I didn’t wish to die
Is it human to adore life?”
If love is fleeting, then so too is the solution. This serves as both the source of frustration and spirit of celebration found on Adore Life, an album which masterfully casts love as a dark force in order for Savages to properly grapple with it. Savages have written an album full of songs about love, but these are not “love songs” as we understand them. While setting out “to write the loudest songs ever,” lyricist Jehnny Beth happened to settle on one of the most powerful concepts known to humanity, and the result is a brilliant album that reflects both the raw joy and frustration that can be associated with love.
But fear not, dear listener. Love is the answer. If love fails, at least we’ll have Savages.
Listen: Drake – Summer Sixteen
OVO SZN is in full effect. Drake premiered the lead single from his much-anticipated Views From The 6 album during tonight’s episode of “OVO Sound Radio.” It’s called “Summer Sixteen.”
“I used to wanna be on Roc-A-Fella, then I turned into Jay / Now I got a house in LA / Now I got a bigger pool than Ye / and look man, Ye’s pool is nice / Mine’s just big is what I’m saying.”
Purchase the new single on Apple Music now.
Views From The 6 is out sometime in April.
Music Video Monday: 32
For this weeks instalment of Music Video Monday we have visuals from Beyonce, Allan Kingdom, PJ Harvey, Kano, and Django Django. Enjoy!
Beyonce – Formation
Directed by unknown
Allan Kingdom – Northern Lights
Directed by Kron
PJ Harvey – The Wheel
Directed by Seamus Murphy
Kano – Endz
Directed by Sam Wrench
Django Django – Life We Know
Directed by John Maclean
A chance meeting between two students – Majid Al Maskati and Jordan Ullman (while attending the University of Toronto), blossomed into a great friendship due to their love of music. After dropping their 2013 debut EP, After Hours, under their Good People moniker; they caught the attention of OVO Sound label co-founder Noah ’40’ Shebib 24hrs after it was posted to their SoundCloud page. This led to their signing and inevitable destiny as musicians. After captivating our hearts on the 2013 Drake hit, Hold On, We’re Going Home; they did it again on their debut EP, A Place Like This. Fast forward to February 2016, and Majid Jordan have finally released their much-anticipated self-titled debut album. As expected the results are sublime!
The album is moody, incredibly spacious and hypnotic – perfect for the after hours. Majid and Jordan’s chemistry is contagious; the album perfectly plays to both of their strengths. Jordan’s intricate, minimalist beats allow for Majid’s vocals to be front and centre by not drowning them out and letting them breathe. Their distinct fusion of R&B, minimal house, pop, funk inspired production is present throughout the album and instantly pulls the listener into the duo’s dark world. Majid’s delicate falsetto provides a sense of comfort and reassurance that everything will be alright. Other than the outstanding production, Majid has all the hallmarks of being a fantastic pop song writer. Even if you have never heard a song, you somehow know the lyrics and you cannot help but sing along.
The duo has without a doubt delivered with their debut – the album is a cohesive body of work that showcases Majid Jordan finding their place as musicians, after leaving the more experimental place found on their EP. With their incredible knack for crafting pop magic by utilizing various genres and sounds, Majid Jordan will one day, without a doubt, conquer the music industry as a whole. The album is simply a step in their evolving journey as artists and superstars in the making – hurry up and buy your tickets before this bullet train leaves the station and you’re left behind in the dust.
Essential Tracks: “Learn From Each Other”, “My Love”, “Day and Night”, “King City”, “Shake Shake Shake”, “Something About You”, and “Every Step Every Way.”
Top Tracks: Part 3 of 2014's Best
As 2014 comes to a close the LYFSTYL Music Blog will be counting down our top tracks of the year. Follow along every day as we release ten more of our favourites building towards our top-100. In no particular order, here’s what we at LYFSTYL were listening to this year with numbers 21 – 30.
“Music is a medium formed by silence and sound” – this is what opens the video for Jamie xx’s ‘Sleep Sound.’ He collaborated with a dancer who decided to dance together to ‘Sleep Sound’ with volunteers from The Manchester Deaf Centre, after a deaf girl on a train told her she could feel the music. It’s beautifully poignant, gripping, and full of love, and no matter how many times I’ve watched it I can’t help getting misty eyed. Paired with Jamie xx’s signature piano, altered guitar riffs, and trilling drums flitting with airy vocals chanting “oh,” “yeah,” “c’mon” in hypnotic fashion. It’s one of the most overwhelming songs I’ve had the pleasure of listening to in recent memory, reiterating the brilliance that is Jamie xx. – Written by Rupa Jogani
QT – Hey QT
Whether you chose to jump on board with PC Music’s jarringly excitable (i.e. cracked-out) vibes, they’ve undoubtedly and rapidly changed the direction of recent electronic music. With last year’s ‘Bipp’ by Sophie making dancers go wild with its lack-of-a-discernible-drop, dirty synths, and ‘Barbie Girl’ esque vocals, A. G. Cook’s label is throwing open the door to insanity. A. G. Cook and Sophie paired up for their sugar-coated dance number, ‘Hey QT’ under their stage name, QT. With nostalgic, juvenile lyricism, clean 90s synths, and happy claps this really is a pop song. It’s borderline annoying but that’s all a part of its charm – also, playing it when someone walks into a room will make them jump out of their skin with, er, excitement. – Written by Rupa Jogani
iLoveMakkonen feat. Drake – Tuesday
It was a year of memeable songs and between ‘No Flex Zone’ and newcomer iLoveMakkonen’s club hit, ‘Tuesday,’ my social media outlets were riddled with people getting turnt up. With the catchiest hook for going out on a weekday and steezin’ with your squad, club life got a lot more rambunctious. I don’t have much else to say on this except 1. it’s annoyingly stuck in my head 2. I appreciate dark, feel good humor in videos and 3. Drake. – Written by Rupa Jogani
FKA twigs – Pendulum
It comes as no surprise that FKA twigs’ game-changing debut LP, LP1, is short-listed on every major publication’s top albums of 2014. Her entire being exudes the avant-garden from her provocative live performances to her eyebrow-raising Google Glass commercial, twigs proves she’s an artist. She paired up with some of the industry’s top producers for the album (Clams Casino, Blood Orange, Sampha) including UK’s finest, Paul Epworth, with whom she worked on ‘Pendulum.’ With knocks calling back from her mesmerizing single, ‘Water Me,’ she moves into choral vocals and moving lyricism. It’s clean, raw, and all consuming, highlighting her technicality and penchant for pushing the bar that much farther. Her genius is making the seemingly unrelatable, well, relatable, and she draws us in again and again to hold us in her understanding arms. – Written by Rupa Jogani
Hudson Mohawke – Chimes
2014 was one, giant raucous cry of gratitude when Hudson Mohawke came back on the radar with his huge number, ‘Chimes.’ With an indefinite hiatus on his TNGHT project with Lunice, we’ve been missing their massive sound for a hot minute. On ‘Chimes,’ he has a Rustie influenced intro until dropping into a body-shaking bass synth mindfuck making strutting down city blocks infinitely more bad ass. He’s been picking up more this year which makes me wonder if we can expect an LP or side project from him in 2015. Until then, I’m gonna go destroy something fragile and yell into the night. – Written by Rupa Jogani
Chance The Rapper feat. The Social Experiment – Arthur Theme
There is something incredibly charming about Chance The Rapper’s boyish confidence, and ‘Wonderful Everyday’ seems to be the closest audible representation of that flare so far. Backed by his band The Social Experiement, Chance The Rapper breathes new life into a song many will remember, but few will have heard recently. It was a bold musical step that seemed unnecessary at first, however the resulting track is so uplifting and enjoyable it’s hard to question the decision to record. ‘Wonderful Everyday’ is a musical journey that takes me back to an age when watching Arthur after school was at the top of my priority list, and it feels good to feel like a kid again. – Written by Kevin Vanstone
Shad & Dj T.Lo – Hang On
It’s hard to top Shad when it comes to intelligent, well-crafted rap coming out of Canada. The Boarding Pass EP, which features Shad spitting over the production of long-time tour partner Dj TLo, is a brilliant collection of beats and brilliant flow. ‘Hang On’ is the EP’s standout track, providing listeners with a one-two punch of T.Lo’s slick ‘Hang On’ sample and Shad’s thoughtful, cutting lyricism. “Maybe they don’t play too much music on Much Music because there ain’t much music out here, or much to it.” Damn right. – Written by Kevin Vanstone
King Tuff – Madness
“King Tuff is my name / I’ve got madness in my brain / Please to meet ya / I’m gonna eat ya, ‘cause I’m batshit insane.” Kyle Thomas sure knows how to have fun with his alter-ego. The Vermont-born rocker is a whole new animal when he becomes King Tuff, and ‘Madness’ is the track that best demonstrates the irresistible fury King Tuff has become known for. Rather than hide his wild side, King Tuff celebrates his insanity for all to hear before taking a drag and chugging a beer. He’s not ashamed of it, he’s proud of it. – Written by Kevin Vanstone
Ex Hex – Don’t Wanna Lose
As with many of the tracks on Rips, ‘Don’t Wanna Lose’ is a fast-and-furious rock and roll track that makes the most out of a short span of time. Ex Hex didn’t break the mold with ‘Don’t Wanna Lose’, but they didn’t need to. The garage from trio from Washington, DC are comfortable in their sound, and that is evident throughout ‘Don’t Wanna Lose’ as well as the 11 other tracks that follow on Rips. – Written by Kevin Vanstone
Chet Faker – Cigarettes and Loneliness
I remember hearing ‘Cigarettes & Loneliness’ for the first time while driving into Vancouver with the top down and the sun shining. It was an immediate “turn it up” moment, and all the way up Oak street I made sure the houses that line the street got a little taste along the way. ‘Cigarettes & Loneliness’ is a crushing song of a love lost, in which Chet Faker wonders how to go on, or what to do next. And while the track itself may be a couple minutes too long, the meandering nature of song parallels the emotional state the singer seems to be stuck in, and when that pain sounds as beautiful as it does on ‘Cigarettes & Loneliness’ it’s hard to complain about a few extra minutes. – Written by Kevin Vanstone