First track, we have MeLo-X, an artist (one of those people who just tries out various types of media like you or I change our socks) based out of New York City. He has an EP, Curate, coming out later this year. The track "Baby Eye" combines an excellent and initially sparse array of beats with vocals that provide some actually serious reflection on the screwed up race situation we have with armed authorities and then...starts reflecting on reflecting on it. It goes meta quickly and it's damn excellent.
Cardiknox is a duo based in New York and Los Angeles that has a debut album due out next year. Two things strike me about this. First, the hair featured on the cover there looks like a tame version of something from Hunger Games. Second, again, it's the lyrics that work for me. "Just because I'm breaking doesn't mean I'm broken." I think we can all relate to that.
Then we have SLUG aka Ian Black, with the song that has the provocative title of "Cockeyed Rabbit Wrapped in Plastic." Which sounds like a joint David Lynch/PETA fanzine. I've been listening to this on repeat to an unhealthy degree. It's no secret that I love songs that change up. There's room for straight forward, yes...but I like a song that has structural changes in it so that the ears are kept on their...um, lobes. It's also a good beat to keep my warped mind busy so that I can actually get some work done.
One thing BBC Radio 6's Craig Charles is a master at doing is finding and featuring awesome tunage that I somehow missed. Case in point: this song "High Heels" by Hidden Jazz Quartett with Omar (aka Omar Lye-Fook MBE). The Quartett is out of Hanover, Germany and Omar hails from London. And this song is just too smooth for its own good. It's one of those that just knows it's a badass and simply struts through your ear canals. Enjoy.
A band that possesses one of my favorite names of all time is ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail of Dead. Last year's album of theirs, IX, has a track on it I've been playing the hell out of and I've been dying to share. It's entitled "Like Summer Tempests Came His Tears." Bonus points if you pick up on the Pink Floyd nod within it.
You can snag the album from Amazon here.
And last but certainly not least: Jack Garratt with a track that...well, it's another one of those I have no idea where it came from. By that I mean "The Love You're Given" seemed to materialize in my iTunes. I'm sure I got it somewhere or was sent it, but my memory is in pure Memento territory these days. But this is a song that transforms itself as it goes, but keeps that odd melodic sample at the beginning as a foundation.
That's from his album from this past April, Synesthesiac, which is available from Amazon.