#7SONGSAWEEK REVIEW / by Noor Kalouti

Hello all! I’m back with a collection of new songs just for you! (and this time it really is for you). We have a VERY eclectic round-up this week; a sophisticated roster including Esperanza Spalding, Gold Panda, and Wizkid (featuring Offset, again!).

I’m sticking to this #7days7songs style roundup, with mostly new music, but good music! As you can probably tell, the structure of this blog is still being defined. I also have an album review coming out this week, an article to be published soon by another outlet. Stay tuned for details but for now, I’m focusing on bringing you new music every week!

With that said, I hope you enjoy the roundup! Make sure to stay tuned for all upcoming content!

1. Carried Away: H.E.R

Before this EP, I had only heard of Gabriella Wilson, or H.E.R, through her features, so I didn’t register that she had this kind of talent. Produced by T-Minus, aka Tyler Williams, this track is off of her recently dropped E.P I Used To Know Her - Part 2 via RCA Records. It comes after the chart-topping EP I Used to Know Her: The Prelude. Not only is H.E.R an extremely talented vocalist, of which I was already aware, but I didn’t realise her level of musicianship and skill as an instrumentalist.


2. You Have To Dance: Esperanza Spalding.

Everybody knows about the genius that is Esperanza Spalding; one of the most renowned and unique jazz musicians in this decade, and probably the next. The only downside to Esperanza’s genius is that her music is sometimes too technical for easy-listening and the mainstream, which is fair, she’s not a mainstream musician. This song, however, is an exception! It’s still quirky, of course, but it’s also a happy-go-lucky song. Produced by Spalding, Matthew Stevens and Justin Tyson, this song is off of her album 12 Little Spells, which she dropped mid-October via Concord Records. This label is known for its foundation in the jazz world, the artist roster boasting 14 Grammy Awards and 88 Grammy nominations. So, only ‘legit’ musicians, please.

3. King of The Hill: Thundercat (ft. Flying Lotus & BADBADNOTGOOD)

Ah! What a collaboration. This was released last week, the day I published the previous roundup and I was so bummed I wasn’t the one to tell you about it on the day-of! Oh well, here it is. Thundercat and Flying Lotus are very well acquainted, Thundercat is signed to Flylo’s label Brainfeeder and they’ve worked together extensively in the past. Also, I have no doubt that BADBADNOTGOOD is friendly with these two brainfeeders—they’re all part of the urban-jazz niche.

The work of these artists is always thought-provoking for me, though I wasn’t wowed by this and I don’t think I was supposed to be. Flylo and Thundercat are the type of artists to constantly create and release music, more for themselves than for us, so this just might be a jam they had with BBNG and felt like sharing. And I’m cool with that, thanks for sharing guys.

 

I discovered this song on Pigeons & Planes' Spotify playlist, which is a great source for good hip-hop, by the way. If you had the patience to listen to this track in full, you’d notice it’s a thoughtful and intentional composition by these two wordsmiths, spearheaded by the producer Daniel Alan Maman, aka The Alchemist, arguably the most essential component in this collaboration. Released through ESGN Records and Jet-Life Recordings on October 30th, these three creators dropped their collaborative album (announced a year ago!)  Fetti, which is clearly off to a great start.

5. Only You (ft. Wizkid, Offset, J-Balvin): Metro Boomin

Another incredible union of artists! This is almost too perfect of a roster, though; every individual on this track is an established, successful and mainstream artist (except for maybe J-Balvin). You’d think the outcome would be amazing but I feel that they canceled each other out. It was over-ambitious—the track pales in comparison to any of their individual work. Produced by Metro Boomin and the prominent Allen Ritter, the song dropped last week on Metro Boomin’s new album NOT ALL HEROES WEAR CAPES through Republic Records. It heavily features Travis Scott and 21 Savage, who took part in curating this album. One thing’s for sure, Metro Boomin is focused on getting those streaming numbers because this album is literally a checklist of all the relevant rappers.

6. Feels Like Summer: Vince Staples

Much like Curren$y and Gibbs, Vince Staples knows how to spit serious bars. It may lack the depth of Location Remote but he has them beat as far as swag and general ‘littiness’. My only complaint for this song is the chorus; it’s too pop-y and Ty Dolla Sign’s performance here does nothing to compliment the verses. It stands out and not in a good way.

Dropped on November 2nd, this is also a premier track from Vince Staples’ new album FM! via Def Jam Records. It’s produced by the LA-based producer Kenny Beats, aka Kenneth Blume III.

7. Keeping Txme: Selling, Gold Panda.

In comparison to the rest of the songs on the roundup, this one may stand out. Like last week, I end with a peculiar choice; one that may bring to light one of the musical phases I passed through as a music nerd. Gold Panda, aka Derwin Schlecker, has accompanied many of my memories, and I can still listen to Lucky Shiner like it was my first time. As a young DJ in college, I curated a minimal/progressive house sound, which should explain why I’m such a fan of this British minimalist, so I feel as though it’s my duty to tell the world about his new album! Gold Panda and Jas Shaw dropped their debut nine-track collaborative album through City Slang under this new production alias: Selling. I personally love this track, it’s the perfect study track and I can never resist a fugal composition, no matter the genre.