Five years ago Charles Hamilton was on the verge of being the next big thing; magazine covers, an XXL freshman list that also included B.o.B, Wale, and Kid Cudi, and an undeniably catchy lead single. But after a series of self-admitted “bloopers”–including a video of Hamilton being socked in the face by a girl he was battle rapping–made the rounds on the internet, Hamilton disappeared as quickly as he had appeared. After a lengthy absence from the public eye, Hamilton appears to be ready for his come back. His new single “New York Raining” is below.
Legendary hip-hop duo M.O.P.’s recent EP Street Certified is a return to form for a group most recently associated with a Muppets-themed viral video. The lead single from Street Certified, “187”, samples the Tears For Fears classic “Head Over Heels” and is also a throwback to the Cash Money & Marvelous 80s party anthem “Ugly People Be Quiet”. “187” is an expression of frustration from M.O.P. towards today’s state of hip-hop. The music video is also a very purposefully gritty reminder of the side of New York City where hip-hop culture and music originated.
Remember when we all fell in love with Best Coast (don’t lie, you know you did)? Well, now that that group has faded into the distance, there have to be acts to replace it. I like Shana Falana for the part; the New York artist even offers a little bit more of a distinct sound, filling in more of the negative space with dreamier notes that go beyond classic alternate-girl fare. This single has a forcefulness, using guitar melody that twists and turns throughout. Look for Team Love to release her album Set Your Lightning Fire Free on April 7th.
I so wish I had had this track on Friday evening after the kids had left my hood and gone their merry way home. As I settled around a fire with friends and some adult beverages, this tune would have been perfectly fitting, just as the cold of Fall barely made its way into Austin. This New York artist is crafting music that begs for some communal listening; it’s the sort of Americana-inspired folk music that asks you to grab a friend and just enjoy the companionship of great friends. I expect to hear more like-minded tunes when Bay Uno releases his debut LP some time in the next year.
Download: Bay Uno – River [MP3]
As soon as I pressed play, I got hooked on this track. It reminds me of this band The Realistics that went largely unnoticed in the early 00s. They combined some of the Stones-esque swagger, but fused it with huge Lizzy-type hooks. That’s what I get from Public Access TV; they unite these elements, then hide them a bit beneath some hip fuzz. There’s no word on a completed album, but with sounds this huge, it’s just a matter of time before the group is everyone’s favorite new band. The cool kids will like it, the nerds will like it and most importantly, you will like it.
New York rockers, Heeney, are gearing up to bring you your first full taste of their tunes. They’ve been putting on blistering shows across NYC with the likes of Titus Andronicus and So So Glos, in case you need a reference point. I like that the delivery of the vocals fit perfectly into the vibe created by the guitar work; the barking verse near the end adds a bit of intensity. This jam will end up on the band’s debut, which is scheduled to pop up later on in the year. No matter the delay, this song will definitely do enough to whet your appetite.
We’re continuing our series with our friends in Shivery Shakes, wrapping up their stories from the road. Since the end of their tour hit the weekend, we held on to both of their later entries to combine them into two. We’ve got words from William, and Andrew, so check out how the road has treated these lads. They’re back in town now, so hopefully we’ll have a nice little wrap-up of their experiences, but for now, check their latest entries. Read more
As I’m sure many of you know by now, we are sent tons of music on the regular and much of it will never make its way to this site. Then that rare tune hits the inbox and we’re reminded why we do this in the first place. This inspiring track called “Little Ears”, from Syracuse based Spark Alaska, is giving me that musical reminder. I’m immediately reminded here of a similar young man named Conor Oberst and some of his earlier work. It’s intimate, pop driven, and hard to forget. Enjoy it with me.
Spark Alaska has a new album called Longest Winter currently available on bandcamp.
Earlier last year we discovered the local Austin label Fleeting Youth, and while we’re still waiting for their offer to put the Young Girls EP on cassette, we’re pretty impressed with their latest signing, Dirty River. The New York three pieces offers a slower take on music than some of their label mates, providing you with a country stomp that you’d likely find from your drunken uncle. They’ll be releasing their self-titled album on the label next week, but you should visit HERE to pre-order your copy.
Download: Dirty River – Releaf [MP3]
Here’s to hoping you’ll enjoy this mellow new number called “Mirrors” from Berlin based band Fenster. It’s a beautifully chilling number that reminds me of band’s similar to Lost in the Trees. Needless to say, it will take a bit of patience to get into, but I think everyone can find something to enjoy here.
New album, The Pink Caves, is due out March 4th on Morr Music.