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Top MP3s of the Week (9/27)

on September 27, 2013, 3:13pm
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cassettes Top MP3s of the Week (9/27)

There can never be too much variety in an MP3s countdown, and this week’s offering has plenty of it. While some songs stand as long-winded journeys of a typical Friday, the hottest emcees brighten up the morning with uplifting beats and flow, gentle crooners open up calm but thought-provoking afternoons, and party igniters bring night life to a danceable high. We hope you find a couple of tracks, if not all, that brighten up your day.

10. Wymond Miles – “Night Drives”

Wymond Miles - -Pale Moon- on Vimeo

Speaking with Interview last year, Fresh & Onlys guitarist Wymond Miles said he wanted to get away from the “jangly Anglophile acoustic guitar stuff” that defined his last record, Under the Pale Moon, and much of The Fresh & Onlys’ material. So, for his second solo LP, Cut Yourself Free, Miles “grabbed a synth” and opened up his musical palette. On “Night Drives”, he croons (in a Bowie-ish manner) to a danceable backbeat and a quivering Moog. “It’s so free of noise and concerns of religion,” Miles said of the song. “What you’re reaching for is even more fundamental.” While not as immediately fetching as his jangly songs, the track’s calm atmosphere invites repeated listens. –Jon Hadusek

9. Joey Purp – “Monologue”


Joey Purp’s call to give “your face a facelift” is accomplished within the opening seconds of the uplifting and celebratory solution of soul and radio hiss produced by Thelonious Martin on “Monologue”.  As exclamatory trumpets hype his introduction, Purp lays down ecstatic energy behind his rise in the rap game, while still cracking a few lines of playful wordplay (“But she deserves a standing O/ Hit in the shower, in other words, a standing O). “Monologue” captures the energy and heart behind young Chicago rap with clear and confident vision, following in the footsteps of his fellow Save Money crew member, Chance the Rapper. –Sam Willett

8. OFF! – “What’s Next?”


In spinning the dial through the hard-hitting “Channel X” radio station of Grand Theft Auto V, OFF!’s “What’s Next” pounds an injection of raw punk energy and never-ending aggression into your veins. Keith Morris attempts to capture as many violent urges encouraged within the crime-ridden wonderland as possible, whether gamers’ controllers are bulldozing into mansions or driving in pursuit of riches. OFF! poses the question “what’s next?” after all of this senseless destruction has been set aflame the California-based meccas, but what they don’t know is that it’s  never-ending. –Sam Willett

7. Albert Hammond Jr. – “Rude Customer”

alberthammondjr1 Top MP3s of the Week (9/27)

“Rude Customer” is the first thing we’ve heard from The Strokes’ guitarist since he bared it all in an interview with NME earlier this month. The track comes from his forthcoming EP, AHJ (out October 8th via Cult Records), and recalls 2003’s Room on Fire, with quick riffs and a shout-along chorus (“It’s all just the saaaame“). It’s nice to hear Hammond Jr. playing and singing with such enthusiasm after dealing with years of emotional turmoil and addiction. And, honestly, this sounds more like The Strokes than the majority of Comedown Machine–Jon Hadusek

6. Akezel – “Be Mine ’03”

Hang onto Your Life

This year’s fall quarter has unleashed numerous waves of impressive R&B, and Akezel is only adding more unique flavor to the mix. While his tenor lifts a lush mixture of Autre Ne Veut and The Weeknd croons, the track’s foundations continuously spark beauty in an array of directions, explorative drum dynamics, smooth hums, and interesting vocal experimentation catching serious fire. His soft requests to “be mine” are seductive and smooth, as he repairs the bruises on his soft heart and pinpoints the beauties of the chemistry. Throw this sensual confession on your love mixtapes, and keep a look out for his debut EP, Circa, due October 28th. –Sam Willett

5. Black Milk – “Dismal”

black milk no poison no paradise Top MP3s of the Week (9/27)

Unsettling tones and incantations course through Black Milk’s latest single, “Dismal” — a self-described “horror-funk” track and the latest tease from his forthcoming No Poison, No Paradise LP (out October 15th via Computer Ugly). To a beat that sounds like John Carpenter’s Halloween soundtrack, Black Milk draws straight from his diary for some intensely personal rhymes: “Told my conscious ‘shut the fuck up’/ Tryin’ to get it together/ Put my hands on my face, can’t look myself in the mirror.” He’s tapping into something deeper here, and this new record appears to be a leap forward artistically for the rapper/producer. –Jon Hadusek

4. ScHoolboy Q – “Banger (MOSHPIT)”

schoolboy q 1

Sample clearance is holding up the release of ScHoolboy Q’s highly anticipated third album, Oxymoron, but Top Dawg Entertainment has kept the hype afloat with a steady stream of singles from the record. The latest, “Banger (MOSHPIT)”, is true to its title, touting gritty production and Q’s trademark vocalizations. “Boom shaka-laka, yawk yawk yawk!” he shouts before spitting his first verse: “Got a nine and a clip, put a nine on your hip / Keep talking that shit, nine to five for your lip”. Although he’s reformed in real life, in his raps, ScHoolboy continues to play the volatile gangsta (in contrast to the conscious approach of fellow Black Hippies Kendrick Lamar and Ab-Soul). –Jon Hadusek

3. Absolutely Free- “Clothed Women, Sitting”

Woods Be All Be Easy

Absolutely Free is a band without limits, if you couldn’t have guessed from that forthright name. Even though they’re new to the scene, they prove their potential to lift lush dynamics from a synthesis of ambient and rock-based meters with their b-side, “Clothed Women, Sitting”. Throughout it’s nine-minute venture, the band experiments with soft and spiraling synthesizers in its psychedelic sunrise, pulsing, gentle electronics, and comforting vocal tones coating its verse. Later, an overwhelming full-band ruckus lifts everything to an uncontrollable climax and conclusion. Each movement becomes more exciting, calling for the journey to begin over and over again. “Clothed Women, Sitting” and it’s accompanying single, “On the Beach”, stands as one of the most impressive experimental debuts of the year, thus far. Stream the track via Stereogum.  –Sam Willett

2. Sky Ferreira – “You’re Not the One”

sky ferreira youre not the one

It’s been an eventful couple of weeks for Sky Ferreira, what with her recent drug bust and subsequent arrest alongside the heroin-toting frontman of DIIV. But, any publicity is good publicity (right?), and Ferreira has rebounded by dropping a pair of singles from her forthcoming major label debut, Night Time, My Time. The strongest of those tunes, “You’re Not The One”, is a surging slice of electro-pop, with vibrant guitar lines and a dingy, nightclub vibe. The massive FM-ready chorus is a simple resignation: “You’re not the one/ Guess you’re not the one.” For her sake, let’s pretend Ferreira’s referring to the DIIV guy–Jon Hadusek

1. Justin Timbelake – “TKO”


As Justin Timberlake has returned to the stage and resurrected beloved radio hits from his catalog, it’s evident that such discography archeology has seeped into his newest material. While The 20/20 Experience showed a new, pristine form of Timberlake by strutting a new maturity in his “Suit & Tie”, “TKO” instills nostalgia immediately, his lyrics of lovely defeat and grinding electronics recalling his debut, Justified. In so doing, he’s composed dance-worthy mood swings through every turn, as Timberlake hits the strongest tones from his lower register and criss-crosses in vocal interactions with producer Timberland. As evidenced by his other single from The 20/20 Experience 2 of 2, “Take Back the Night”, the encore will continue to result in some of the year’s most exciting radio highlights. –Sam Willett

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