Sunday, July 25, 2010
About time! After many delays, Klaxons are finally unveiling some new material from their forthcoming sophomore album Surfing The Void, and so far, it's all looking rather feline-promising. Oh, and that video looks like it was a whole lot of fun to shoot:
Monday, July 12, 2010
Seen from a two-year-distance, the biggest achievement in 808s & Heartbreak was not the then-much-discussed extreme use of auto-tune. It was instead the launch of a new concept in the hip-hop world where we had dark ballads and introspective lyrics, over instrumentals that seemed like skeletons of post-digital songs. The born of emo-rap, anyone?
Fast-forward to 2010 and the first mainstream descendent of that polarizing album comes from the newest superstar in the game, the dude-next-door whom anyone can identity with. So yeah, Drake is now being acclaimed as hip-hop's saviour, and if that shows how unfair the world was to Kanye's 2008 controversial masterpiece, the truth is that, when hearing Thank Me Later, one can only think that justice is finally being done.
A direct continuation of last year's excellent So Far Gone, Drake's debut full-length further explores the qualities first revealed in that mixtape, and even accentuates them, in a very diverse collection of songs that is, nevertheless, surprisingly consistent. From his incredible ability to smoothly flow between rapping and singing, to the innumerous hooks and involving details that each song incorporates, you have it all, creating an intense and futuristic sound that, paradoxically, sounds like an instant classic.
And back again to that 808s & Hearbreak comparison: if Kanye's album seemed like a work-in-progress from a mind that is constantly flowing into different directions, Thank Me Later sounds like a definitive statement from someone pretty sure about where he's heading: with his debut album, Drake has already created a landmark (9/10)
Drake - Find Your Love (video)
Saturday, July 10, 2010
And here it is, coming from New-Zealand, what will definitely become the feel-good song of Summer 2010! Powerful and nostalgic, beautiful lyrics, and a video that compliments it all too perfectly:
Monday, July 05, 2010
Showing a lot of respect for catchy pop tunes, The Drums are not your average Brooklyn band, but who is complaining? After all, it's so easy to fall for them: their songs do demonstrate an enormous love for melody in an almost perfect way, and their songwriting is virtually flawless. On the other hand, it could also be easy to start a backlash, as they do display their influences loud and proudly: from Joy Division and New Order to surf groups and 1960's pop, you have them all in here and it shows. A lot.
But, then again, who is complaining? Not me, that's for sure. Because hearing these 12 tracks is an absolute joy, much like what happened already with their previous EP Summertime!, only now with a bit more melancholic tenderness and less summery vibes. And if, at first listen, you feel that their songs don't have anything special about them, then think again. Because every time one of them threatens to fall into monotony, there's always a new detail coming in to take it to new heights and literally save the day. Sometimes it may be just a simple synth line, or the extra addition of cymbals. But other times, it's just the perfect conjunction of everything, from start to end, creating special moments to soundtrack the act of pure escapism. And for more about that, just hear and watch the absolutely gorgeous video below. (8/10)
The Drums - Forever And Ever Amen (video)
Sunday, July 04, 2010
"If I could have my way / There would never be an end to this beginning"
Grace Jones (one of the names I wish I would see playing live this summer) collaborated recently with photographer Chris Levine, known for his work using 3D and light effects, on an art installation called Stillness at the Speed of Life. Some of the photos revealed are mysterious and beautiful but now we get to see the music video that resulted from those sessions. Here's the video for I Love You To Life, a gorgeous Compass-Point styled track from her latest album, Hurricane. To find out more about the Jones and Levine collaboration please visit www.gracejonesbychrislevine.com.