What We're Listening To This Week 2/23/18

Image Courtesy of Brockhampton

Image Courtesy of Brockhampton

"BOOGIE" - BROCKHAMPTON

The debut track off of their third album of last year, "BOOGIE" is an undeniable jam by boyband BROCKHAMPTON. The song is merely a means for BROCKHAMPTON to flex - seven members of the band appear on the song, and it even features a sample of the infamous Wii theme music. The song defines fun, and it’ll make you want to boogie no matter where you are. There’s a catchy chorus provided by leader Kevin Abstract, a bouncy beat made by Romil and Jabari, and tight lyrics like Dom’s “Hear the sounds of the pharaoh when we spin the tunes / Everything feel right now you in the womb / Wanna motivate you in the afternoon / Top shelf money, that's my new perfume.” ~Peter Pribyl Pierdnock

 

Image Courtesy of Vevo

Image Courtesy of Vevo

"Water" - Jack Garratt

I initially heard this song in the Netflix movie "To The Bone" and became instantly obsessed. The electronic back track perfectly swells between understated, almost a cappella verses and bass drops at each chorus. Jack Garratt's live acoustic version for Burberry is even dreamier with the perfect aesthetic to compliment the captivating performance. ~Alexandra Vollero

 

Image Courtesy of Childish Gambino

Image Courtesy of Childish Gambino

"Freaks And Geeks" - Childish Gambino

It only took him seven years, but Bino finally put his gem of an EP, titled EP, on Spotify last month. "Freaks and Geeks" is (in my opinion) by far the standout track: a total throwback to the classic braggadocious, word-play-heavy style of rap he wrote at the start of his music career. ~Alexandra Vollero

 

Image Courtesy of TDE

Image Courtesy of TDE

"Opps (with Yungen Blakrok)" - Vince Staples, Yungen Blakrok (from the Black Panther soundtrack)

Without even seeing "Black Panther," this song puts you right in the middle of an epic Korean car chase. Kendrick hits this one out of the park with a backbeat that bumps so hard, you can't help but bob your head a little on the way to class. ~Alexandra Vollero

 

Photo Courtesy of Rap-Up

Photo Courtesy of Rap-Up

"Love Lies" - Khalid and Normani

Khalid's gravel textured voice combined with the sensual stylings of Fifth Harmony's Normani seems like an unusual pairing. It isn't. Instead, their slow, beautifully textured jam is a surprising collaboration which could prove to be a hit. You'll be clicking along in no time, it's addictive. ~Eish Sumra

 

Image Courtesy of 70mack

Image Courtesy of 70mack

The Ways (with Swae Lee) - Khalid, Swae Lee (from the Black Panther soundtrack)

“The Ways” is the fourth song off of Black Panther: The Album, and it features Khalid and Swae Lee, two people I honestly thought would never be doing a song together. However, the god that is Kendrick Lamar brought these two together in what can only described by the math equation 1+1=3. Khalid and Swae Lee sing about a “power girl” whom they want to get to know better. Thematically, this song doesn’t offer much that’s new--it's a run-of-the-mill love song about admiring someone from afar. But what makes this track my favorite from the album is its relaxed vibe, and the silky smooth delivery from both singers. The beat is reminiscent of a tropical, reduced version of Drake’s “Passionfruit” beat; it feels like standing on a beach, piña colada in hand, singing to a girl a few towels away. The pace never falters, and the transitions are seamless. In summary, if you’ve ever been up at night wondering what it would be like for these two soulful youngsters to serenade you from outside your window, listen up. ~Kevin Chan

 

Image Courtesy of Guerrilla Funk Records

Image Courtesy of Guerrilla Funk Records

"Make Way for a Panther" - Paris

Though relatively unknown, San Francisco rapper Paris came out of the same era as Public Enemy and Ice Cube, and rapped about the same subject matter in an even more scathing tone. The track I’ve been bumping the most this week comes from his 1992 album Sleeping With the Enemy, the second of what could be considered Paris’s classic trilogy. On the production side, it features a young Josh Davis a.k.a. DJ Shadow, whose beatwork here reflects more traditional turntablism and breakbeats than his eclectic sampling style. After letting the beat play out, Paris’s single verse puts forth his message concerning the uprising of the black community, and reflects his hope of being the catalyst for bringing their sentiments to the forefront. The message certainly plays off of the contemporaneous rise of political hip-hop, but it is delivered with a more dynamic lyricism than that of his peers and a more memorable beat. The beat especially shines during the drum break interlude sampled from Rotary Connection’s classic “Life Could,” and perfectly complements the technical mastery that Paris had in his heyday.

 

MusicSteven Norwalk