The Drop | November 2016
An overview of this month’s highlighted tracks, SoundCloud playlist included.
The Drop is our featured playlist on Soundcloud and Spotify that was created to keep you in the know with music from dope, rising artists.
“Too Fast” by Sonder
The recently formed trio, Sonder, has released their fourth track titled “Too Fast.” Producers Dpat and atu join forces with Brent Faiyaz (on vocals) to create this 5-minute journey through sultry and seductive soundscapes. This song is much shorter than the 10+ minute mixes they’ve posted in the past, but certainly one you’ll love to keep on repeat as the vibes are just right.
“In Loving Memory” by Saba
Inspired by the unexpected death of his uncle, westside Chicago artist Saba released “Bucket List Project” as a reflection on how we spend our time on Earth and making the most of it. At the end of most songs you’ll hear a friend or family member say what’s on their bucket list.
The 22-year-old honors his uncle on this single, “In Loving Memory.” Half of the project was co-produced by Saba and also includes features from Twista, Smino, and Ravyn Lenae. If you’re looking for inspiring music from the Chicago hip-hop scene, this is the project to turn to.
“Handsome” by Brianna Cash
Philly songstress Brianna Cash creates a heartfelt single touching on the loss of her boyfriend who tragically passed away in April of 2016. And if you are vibing to the single and her voice, be sure to listen to her feature on Tory Lanez’s “Question Is.” Philadelphia has a lot of hidden talent, everyone should take the time to listen to them.
Toronto-based singer-songwriter Daniel Caesar releases the alluring duet “Get You” featuring Kali Uchis. On the song, Caesar opens up and shares his feelings about the person he’s falling in love with. In an interview with Billboard, he explains “I met a girl and got very involved. She brought things and feelings out of me that I didn’t know I had. ‘Get You’ is a song of praise to a love I didn’t even feel I deserved at the time.” By the third verse, Uchis adds her sweet and warm vocals until the closing.
“Best Me” by Sylvan LaCue
“Best Me” by Sylvan LaCue is all about self-love and improvement, and it’s a very special release for the Miami artist being his first ever self-produced track. Spoken-word vibes are paired with repeating piano keys and deep bass notes on this first release since his debut album ‘Far From Familiar’ (released April 2016). If you’re feeling his music, make sure to keep an eye out for his upcoming project ‘At What Cost.’
‘Cheikh’ EP by Sabrina Bellaouel
Paris-based artist Sabrina Bellaouel shares her experimental and dreamlike world in her 1st EP titled ‘Cheikh.’ The 3-track project features production from Aayhasis Polich, Rahman, Myth Syzer and Mamen Loubenski. Take a listen and escape the bustle of everyday life with these tranquil vibes.
‘MANGO’ EP by bLAck pARty
The Little Rock, Arkansas native who now resides in Los Angeles has found a way to blend influences (explained as “drugs, music from the 60’s-90’s, and beautiful scenery” on his Facebook profile) from both cities to create his own sound consisting of psychedelic pop and “tropical funk.” Listen to “Summerlove” in the playlist above.
“Flowers” by Richelle L. Brown
This soulful, rock-tinged track sounds like honey — sticky and sweet. Richelle L. Brown tells REVOLT that it’s “a song about a wild woman who wants the men in her life to know that she is wild and not the best at love but she can be if they show her how.” One listen and you’ll get that immediately.
If this song entices you like it did us, listen to her entire newly released project, “Purple Tiger Lily.”
Boston’s Gio Dee released a musical ode to his family and life with his latest single “For My,” featuring Millyz and Bia.
“NOVEMBER 9TH” by WILOUGH (a.k.a. Willow Smith)
The wokest wee, Willow Smith has channeled her post-election day blues into a gentle 90-second ballad. Backed by a guitar, she gives us Lianne La Havas and Kadhja Bonet vibes as she sings the uplifting, three-verse lullaby to her fellow affected: “Baby girl, I know you’re tired / Don’t let the world put out your fire / Take my hand and you will see / Sadness and anger aren’t everything…. Baby boy, don’t lose your sweetness / Don’t think your humanity equals weakness / Take my hand and you shall see / Suppression and pain are not everything.”
“What You Want” by THEY.
Dante Jones and Drew Love, better known as THEY., released another “grunge’n’b” single with “What You Want.” The LA-based duo is showing just a glimpse of their forthcoming debut album ‘Nü Religion: HYENA’. The mixture of both rock and rnb together is surprisingly cohesive and pleasing.
Gucci Mane says it best on this remix: “Gucci and Common, did you see this coming?” As the title track to Com’s latest LP, the Chicago MC recruits Guwop and Pusha Ton to relay his pointed and poignant letter to America.
“# (demo)” by Maggie Rogers
Many musicians have already shared their emotional reactions to Donald Trump’s presidential win, and many will likely continue to express themselves in song just as Maggie Rogers has. The singer-songwriter, who first gained viral fame after nearly bringing Pharrell to tears during a stop at NYU earlier this year, just shared “# (demo)” and the bare-bones track, driven by a lo-fi guitar riff, details what most of us are probably still feeling: “Global grief hangs heavy as summer heat / Drenched in rage and crying for relief / And I’m sweating.” A not-so-subtle nod to Trump awaits us in the lyrics, too: “And I can’t sigh another angry sigh for an insecure man that’s telling lies / And I can’t change the mind of a lonely guy who won’t let my friend go rightfully inside.”
“Plate” by Leaf
I was sold on Leaf immediately after hearing “Nada” and being intimidated by her crazy-calm. “Plate” is more evidence of her bawse-ness, especially since it supports those who boast the same. It’s a song for breadwinners, however that may come to pass. Over a bouncy and reverberating bass drum beat, peppered with finger snaps, Leaf shows love to her fellow hustlers the only way she knows how: all sass, no sugar. “All my bitches eatin’, gettin’ cake / If you ridin’ with me, grab a plate…. If you fuckin’ with me, I got love for ya / Big ol’ booty strippers, I got dubs for ya / All my niggas need it, I got drugs for ya / ‘Cause if you’re in my city, I’m the plug for ya.”
Chicago’s rising stars Noname and Saba are back at it again, collaborating with fellow artists Phoelix and Chelsea Reject. This single will be on an upcoming project titled ‘Countdown to Midnight.’
“Pink Room” by Beach Season
Sam Avant and Simon Blitzer are the Canadian duo who form the new Universal Music group Beach Season. Their debut album Libra Year blends electro melodies with R&B, ushering in their own sound aptly called “bootywave”. The smooth sonance of “Pink Room” makes it easy to fall in line with their groove. Beach Season’s recent collaboration with Rainer & Grimm titled “Do It Right,” quickly hit one million-plus streams on Spotify. And now they’re looking to take their EP along the same ambient avenue, all the while continuing to build on their growing international following.
“Something in the Way” by Jorja Smith
London-based songstress Jorja Smith shared several new tracks from her debut EP ‘Project 11.’ In “Something in the Way,” Smith showcases her vocal range and effortless singing abilities. And as an artist who’s only 19 years old, it’s going to be exciting to see her musical development as she gets older. So much soul and emotions in her voice…truly, honestly beautiful.
“Perception” by Rob Hicks
25-year-old recording artist, producer, and engineer from Wisconsin, Rob Hicks, premieres the energetic single “Perception.” Hicks uses this track to express his feelings about reality vs. social media (perception), explaining “perception, sadly is reality. It’s easier now more than ever for people, especially recording artists to flex and make themselves seem a lot bigger than what they actually are in reality thanks to social media. People will do the most in the social media era for likes and retweets, regardless of if it’s in their nature or not..I give people the real me through my music no matter what.”
“M.O.M.” by J.I.D. (feat. Quentin Miller)
Like A$AP Mob, Odd Future, and TDE before them, Spillage Village—the Atlanta-formed hip-hop collective comprised of J.I.D, duo EarthGang, Jordxn Bryant, and Hollywood JB—is continuing to prove that there’s strength in numbers and that success is better shared. For further evidence of their promise, recall that it was their long-form, J. Cole-assisted, “Can’t Call It” posse cut that spawned the abridged version heard on DJ Khaled’s “Jermaine’s Interlude” (Major Key) and not the other way around. And now, just two days before the release of their third album Bears Like This Too Much—the second effort saw the likes of OG Maco and 6LACK as guests—the collaborative team is sharing “M.O.M.” Led by J.I.D., the slow-moving track is as hypnotic as the snake charming-like flute that largely drives it. There are snare drums, reverberating metallic strikes, and infrequent fluttering keys too as J.I.D. informs listeners that the titular acronym does not refer to his mother, but to a popular willpower-encouraging phrase: “Mind over matter / Mind over matter / You got the bad chick / But mine was badder.” Quentin Miller joins too, counteracting J.I.D.’s staccato flow with a drawling one. Bears Like This Too Much drops December 2.
Budding producer KRNE connects with SAINTS for this infectious and uptempo song titled “Numb.” Powerful vocals, smooth soundscapes and upbeat future electric feels have made this one a beauty.
“Doppelgänger” by Ro Ransom
New York’s Ro Ransom skates over soaring melodies and flows in his newest single “Doppelgänger,” discussing the struggles of love and a past relationship with an ex.