On "High Art," two of the finest writers of our time converge in an operatic bid for summer jam glory. Really, the beat on this one is just gargantuan with my main man The-Dream throwing hooks like sexual, drugged-out darts and Jay-Z at peak-level bravado.
Subtle and powerful, a push and pull of impulse and emotion, "Fool Of Me" is an alienated, dreamy duet for the 21st century from Say Lou Lou and Chet Faker. As always, relationship problems rest front-and-center, but it's the vocal weaponry and pinpoint production causing the drama here. This one is from the Julian EP – out today from our big brother label Downtown Records.
On "Girls Love Beyoncé," Canada's national treasure Drake summons the spirit of Destiny's Child to indulge in his own loneliness. It's a sultry creeper and yet another example of Drizz knocking-out a quality R&B track by snaking every little vocal inflection into a sexualized, dejected hook.
Silky smooth Miguel posed a big, kind-of-gross romantic question last year with "How Many Drinks?," and now he's tapped the talents of fellow 2012 MVP Kendrick Lamar for an official remix. Even though it's 'old,' this could actually surge into Summer Jam territory this year with all its tongue-flicking (shout out, K. Dot) motives.
Might IV Play be The-Dream's magnum opus? With the record's sultry, slow-burning title track, we're a few steps closer to an answer as our protagonist Terius demands the heavy-petting be skipped for, well, "straight sex." Nope, there's no time to waste with those porcelain floor R Kelly synths, blasts of Prince's pelvic guitar distortion and cascading harmonies that sound like rapidly orbiting planets.
[via Rolling Stone]
Ultra-dreamy pop twins Say Lou Lou (formerly Saint Lou Lou) possess an ornate sense of submerged style that still carries a catchy, liquid clarity. Their new single "Julian" (a first release from their new à Deux Records in partnership with our big brother label Downtown) is sleek recliner disco – a love song of raindrops and blood-red guitars.
What would it be like to have sex in space? This is a question I've spent years examining in my laboratory and now I have the aural proof on "Bo Peep (Do U Right)" – a collaboration between the sultry R&B/pop singer Jeremih and producer Shlohmo courtesy of Yours Truly's "Songs From Scratch" series.
Beyoncé has already been everywhere this year – the inauguration, the Super Bowl, the top of HBO's documentary list – but it hasn't been because of new music until now. "Bow Down / I Been On" is an exciting, jarring two-parter filled with ample Houston love and Bey telling bitches to bow down. Plus, Hit-Boy and Timbaland (with some help from The-Dream and Polow Da Don, apparently) get absolutely vicious on the production tip.
I still can't decide if "Suit And Tie" is actually good, but I do know this official Four Tet makes Timberlake's light luxury-pop far more interesting. Using JT's main vocal, everything else gets shoved into microsampled house territory that skyrockets forward with a muffled, Burial-esque snare.
Good on Ciara for 'coming back,' but this is more about Mike WILL Made It totally owning the past year in popular music. As he's starting to produce more R&B, those gurgling, flighty synths and assault-level drums seem like a peak of operatic electronic production. In Ciara's case, it creates a bed for you to make a party on her body (which, yes, awesome), but this one really shows-off what happens when the producer-of-the-moment chops "My Boo" into the sonic equivalent of a sexcapade. Those drums!