Artists have been keeping busy during quarantine and there’s arguably more releases each week than prior to the pandemic.
It can be hard to cut through the noise sometimes, but no need to worry, we’ve curated the ten releases you need to bump at your Friday night zoom party this weekend.
binki – Heybb!
Take this as your official “I was there before he was big” card. Born to Kenyan parents in Pennsylvania, binki was studying to become an actor before heading down the path to becoming an accidental pop-star.
His equally riotous and meandering route through summery strings, bouncy kicks and freeform lyricism on ‘Heybb!’ has one of music’s most overused terms – ‘genre-bending’ feeling genuinely accurate.
For fans of Bakar, slowthai, King Krule and any other genre-bending freewheelers!
sourfruit – High Tide
Following the release of their sharp visuals for ‘Candlelight’ earlier this year, sourfruit have shared the second single from their debut album ‘High Tide’.
Carefully sprinkling introspective lyrics over soft, groovy instrumentation, the crew are illustrating the fragility of life. With all the sweet moments, there will inevitably be pain that follows and rather than fighting against the waves, sourfruit are learning to surf.
Arlo Parks – Black Dog
The latest in a quickly-growing catalog of emotive tear-jerkers from Arlo Parks.
Following the Loyle Carner directed video for Eugene, Arlo has shared ‘Black Dog’, a track that is, “supposed to make people who are struggling feel less isolated and start a conversation surrounding the prevalence of mental health issues in today’s world.”
Parks has consistently wowed with her confessional brand of songwriting and ‘Black Dog’ details the darker moments in real way, touching on the difficulties of getting out of a dark space.
Ari Noir – Come Thru / Faded Remix Feat. Aik J
Last August Ari Noir released ‘Come Thru/ Faded’, an intimate cut that’s sombre tones and twinkling keys underline the emotional fragility strung throughout the record.
Taking ‘a hit’ to numb the pain, he’s invited RnB crooner Aik J for a considered feature that breeds a sense of common humanity in shared experiences of love, loss and pain.
Feeling like a retrospective phone call, Ari’s additional verse brings closure in the reworked version of the track.
Meg Thee Stallion – Savage Remix Feat. Beyoncé
It feels like you can’t avoid Meg Thee Stallion’s hit track at the moment and just as there were hints of listener fatigue she had Queen B grace the cut with a cold verse.
More Beyoncé rapping please.
JPEGMAFIA – BALD! REMIX Feat. Denzel Curry
Buttermilk Jesus has recruited Zeltron 3000 for relentless appearance on ‘BALD!’.
Grubby, Cheesmore – Warmish
Grubby and Cheesmore have teamed up with an effort brimming with cohesiveness and emotional vulnerability. Their debut EP ‘Warmish’ borrows from the humanised elements of lo-fi hip hop’s percussion and the glitchy undertones feel reflective of those typical fragmented and persistent post-romantic thoughts.
Features from Soft Boy affiliate Henry Earnest and Dublin pop crooner Greg Tisdal are welcome additions on a genuinely accessible record
There’s shades of Easy Life and Brockhampton strung throughout a project that makes it feel necessary to dance away your heartbreak.
Little Simz is back with her first body of work since the Brit Award nominated ‘GREY Area’.
‘Drop 6’ is a whirlwind of digestible tracks. Lacking perhaps the rich production that was strung throughout her last album, it compensates with snappy one-liners.
Created entirely in quarantine, the record has its own distinctive energy and while you shouldn’t expect another ‘GREY Area’, ‘Drop 6’ really scratches an itch for more of her relatable lyricism.
Rikshaw – Get Away
This past six months RikShaw has shown us he can switch it up. Whether it’s the straight up braggadocios bars in ‘Like That’ or the pop tendencies in ‘Crush’, he’s confirmed his range and ability to chop t up on the underground or provide that sweet hit.
With little left to prove in terms of versatility he’s ventured back to a more personal and familiar sound in ‘Get Away’.
We might not have festivals to blare out hits this summer, but Rikshaw’s tender hooks under the stars in your back garden may be the next best thing.
Gorillaz – How Far? Feat. Tony Allen & Skepta
Released as a tribute to the late afrobeat legend and pioneer Tony Allen, ‘How Far?’ is the latest offering in the ongoing ‘Song Machine’ series.
Recorded a week before lockdown in the UK it sees Skepta spit a de facto wake up call over a warm instrumental.