Hello all, I know I’ve been M.I.A—the blog has been on a bit of a hiatus and I apologize for missing the reviews. The playlist, however, is always updated and posted on Wednesdays so you can still get your #7songaweek! With that said, this week’s roundup features new music from Burna Boy, Future, and the lovely Noname.
Curren$y, Trademark da Skydiver, and Young Roddy—the Jet Life collective—have reunited for the first time in nearly three years. Released on Babygrande Records, “Plan of Attack” is a nostalgic track for many, one that may breathe new life into the Jet-Life fan base and begs the question: is Jet Life going to release more music? This throwback track was dropped last week and is produced by 206derek, B-Eazy the DJ, and SethFromAbove. I personally found it underwhelming at first, knowing full well what Jet Life can produce, I felt this fell short. However, ultimately it grew on me.
Future’s new album is here! “Crushed Up” is the 5th song on Futur Hndrx Presents: The WZRD. This album arrived January 18th through Epic Records and Freebandz, and it was masterfully produced by Wheezy. Although I’m not the biggest Future fan, he is the poster boy (man?) for mumble rap/trap and has molded the genre in his image. Also, this is an undeniably catchy track. I can’t vouch for the album, however, but I will say that I find Future’s brand and sound to have aged nicely… although many disagree.
Burna Boy just dropped a staple Afrobeat track with his fellow Nigerian rapper, Zlatan Ibile. Burna has had an active 2018 with his new album Outside , featuring many standout tracks such as “Ye,” “Gbona,”, and “On the Low.” For newcomers to the Afrobeat scene, “Killin Dem” is a very easy track fto get into, it checks the boogie boxes, but for dedicated Burna fans, it doesn’t match the quality on Outside.
As you can probably guess—for obvious reasons if you’ve been reading the reviews (or listening to ODR)—this is my favorite track on this week’s roundup. Noname dropped this beauty on New Year’s day, an appropriate reflection on current society. On this song, the young Chicagoan raps about selling her “pain for profit” and the unsettling aftertaste of selling one’s emotional self for entertainment; a peculiar process, indeed. With that said, I wish this song was on Room 25, it would have fit better than songs like “Regal.”
If you haven’t heard, ROMA is an extremely successful film directed by Academy Awards winner Alfonso Cuarón. It has won three Golden Globe awards and is nominated for a 2019 Oscar. All in all, this movie has inspired many, including 17 year-old Billie Eilish and her older brother Finneas O’Connell. This song will be featured on the album Music Inspired By Roma, to be released by Sony Music Masterworks. The album will feature various artists that were hand-picked by Cuarón, with all of the songs pulling from specific scenes and sounds from the film.
The winter seems to be drawing me towards more introspective, moody music and it’s starting to show in these roundups. Gabriels are an up-and-coming band from Los Angeles, and “Loyalty” is their debut release on R&S Records; a track that has since been featured in the latest Prada advert featuring J.K Simmons. Much like the song above, “Loyalty” is a soulful, emotive piece of music that could fit perfectly on one’s break-up playlist. I am particularly impressed with this release since it’s so simple and intimate, a bold move for a debut release, but one that gives the listener an honest rendition of this band’s values.
D’Angelo has released his brooding new song, “Unshaken” which will appear on the soundtrack of the viral video game Red Dead Redemption 2. “Unshaken” marks the soul singer’s first release since his third LP, 2014’s Black Messiah.