Music is a little like food and clothes. These are areas where it’s probably worthwhile for one to explore & expand their tastes. The Playlist is assembled each month by Dappered’s very own music correspondent, Tim Johnstone. Tim is a former Virgin Records Label Rep & current award winning Program Director at KRVB, which was awarded the FMQB AAA station of the year markets 50+. You can also catch his work on Fridays when he assembles the Weekend Dossier.
The Arcade Fire’s MVP steps out on his own with a not-altogether too surprising collection of songs. He tips his hat to his roots rock influences on many of the tracks. “Anna” brings together elements of new wave, do-wop, and electronica for a song that feels like it might be headed backwards and forwards at the same time.
First things first: I still haven’t heard much of anything from Sir Paul in any of the songs released so far from Kanye’s upcoming CD. While “Four Five Seconds” was pleasant enough in a rough demo kind of way, this feels more solid. And it’s edgy. Thelophilus steps up and provides the lyrical heft. Works for me. Oh, and Sir Paul shows up at the end after all.
And then this came along. I enjoy this way more than I could have expected. The rhythm, the samples, the atmospherics and the synth work combine for a bit of a flashback right up to that moment when the contemporary elements bring it back to now. This is going to fuel some workouts.
Florence Welch does not do subtle. This, of course, is part of her appeal. This first taste of her upcoming album rocks more than anything we’ve heard from her previously. But the way the song ebbs and flows, is very much Florence: the intensity of her delivery, the peaks and valleys of the production, the stacked vocals.
Big Data (aka Allan Wilkis) is getting ready to unleash his full length on a waiting public. “Dangerous,” with Joywave, from last year’s 1.0 ep was among my favorite jams of the year. And while he has also collaborated with Rivers Cuomo (Weezer) on one track from his upcoming album, Jamie Lidell steps up on this track. Lidell’s stellar R&B influenced vocals are a perfect foil for Wilkis’ funkified electronic pop.
This is the not your grandfather’s Southern Rock. Brittany and the guys deliver stripped down R&B roots rock without pretentions.
Despite the clash of collaborators and the possibility for total disaster, everything about this one works for me. Stromae’s instrumental track “Merci” gets reimagined for the big screen. Q-Tip sounds on top of his game and Pusha T impresses throughout.. LA’s favorite singing sisters provide a wall of backing vocals which electrify the electro skeleton of the song. And Lorde? She just fits right in.
Nate Ruess can’t say why, but he thinks this is his favorite song he’s written. Originally written for Fun’s second release, Nate held on to this one because of the personal nature of the song. It’s pretty huge. It goes from zero to overblown within 4 minutes and I would be disappointed if it didn’t. The openness with which Ruess shares his stories is buoyed by the showstopper approach.
I admit it. I didn’t pay attention to the people who contributed to and produced Beyonce’s most recent release. Apparently, this kid was a huge part of it. Keep that in mind as you experience this track from his new release. I like everything about this, from the industrial strength rhythm and percussion, to the processed instrumentation. There is a street vibe happening here and there are sonic surprises which come along every so often. You can check out his short film Motorcycle Jesus over here.
Liam who? With each release, Noel Gallagher sounds more and more in his own skin. Confident vocals dominate this new album. Johnny Marr even pops up on a track. This sounds like classic Oasis to me. “…gonna try my best to get there, but I can’t afford the bus fare, and the storm that’s rolling over man, it makes me wanna cry…”
THE CLASSIC: Lenny Kravitz – “Are You Gonna Go My Way”
Of a time and a place. And yet, all of it is perfect still. This is rock and roll.
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For previous editions of The Playlist, see the growing archive here.