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Tired of listening to the Spotify Discover playlists? Bored by the same artists that pop up on the top 100 charts? Want to become more well-versed in music? You’ve come to the right place. In this article I’ll lay out a simple road map that will turn you — a boring layperson who listens to lo-fi music while studying — into a well-respected, nay I say sophisticated, music fan.
You guys remember rock? The genre in which shirtless singers wear tight leather pants, do copious amount of drugs and are unabashedly cool? Rock has somewhat faded from the mainstream consciousness, but the music is far from dead. Last week, singer/songwriter Mike Krol, released one of the best rock records of this year: Power Chords. The project is loud, brash and still somehow grippingly tender.
James Blake makes good music. He’s been making good music for a long time. His first track, released back in 2009, “Air and Lack Thereof,” was a slapping dance song that he made in his bedroom. Since then the quiet, London-based producer dropped three fantastic albums, won the Mercury Prize and became one of the most sought after song writers, collaborating with pop icons such as Kanye West, Beyoncé and Frank Ocean. Blake is known for being your favorite artist’s favorite artist.
This week has been a fruitful one for hip-hop. There were a ton of big releases and great projects that dropped in a quick span.
In detail, write out exactly what happened to you today. I can almost guarantee your summary will be dull. Passionate, powerful experiences in life happen rarely. Luckily for us, humans have created an efficient way to experience excitement and passion: art.
No one expected this moment to come. Tha Carter V was one of those legendary unreleased albums, on the same level as Jay Electronica’s debut project and Dr. Dre’s Detox. After years of waiting, the historic moment finally came. This past Friday, Wayne released the fifth entry in the Carter series.
Open up YouTube, look up “Redbone Chopped and Screwed” and click on the first link. The thumbnail is a cover of Childish Gambino’s project “Awaken, My Love!” with a purple tint. Sit on a comfortable couch. Hit play.
On Friday, Sept. 14 JPEGMAFIA had his first show in Baltimore since his move to California. On his “The Reverse Christopher Columbus Tour,” Peggy stopped at one of his classic venues, the Metro Gallery — with the small Philadelphia band Joy Again.
It is devastatingly hard to lose someone close to you. In some cases, one can feel those same gut-wrenching feelings with the passing of someone they’ve never met.
Over the summer, a lot of music was released to little or no fanfare. The summer is usually when huge, blockbuster music is at the forefront, so the smaller, more unique projects get sidelined. Here are some of my favorite more underground projects from the past summer that you may not have heard.
I have long thought that Post Malone was underrated. His first song, “White Iverson,” blew up and he was almost universally considered a one hit wonder. But he kept making hits. He quickly built up a loyal fanbase. His first album — Stoney — was a great project. Each song on that album does something different and fun. Post found a way to do the thing that rappers had been trying to do for years: combine the country and rock aesthetic with hip hop.
The Spring Fair concert was destined to be a failure. The artist reveal disappointed people, and there were rumors of a heavy underselling of tickets. All around campus you could feel this general disinterest. Days before the concert, tickets were being sold for less than half of the original value.
As we near summer, more and more music continues to drop. Recently there has been a swell of releases, especially in terms of hip hop. Here are two records that haven’t been getting the coverage they deserve:
While there haven’t been too many great albums released recently, there have been a lot of great singles. So, here are some of my favorite songs that haven’t gotten enough exposure.
Earl Sweatshirt is the most underrated rapper in the game. In my opinion, he is the best contemporary rapper. Luckily for us, the Spring Fair team somehow got one of the most reclusive and quiet rappers to come and bless us with a performance. In expectation of his upcoming concert, here is a short introduction to the most talented man you’ve never listened to.
“R&B is dead.” This statement keeps ringing in people’s mouths, but I think it can’t be further from the truth. Maybe the days of what I would call “Ringtone R&B” are over, where, instead of rappers, everyone looked up to bare-chested singers dressed in all white.
The muted bass that introduces “My Boy” is slow, delicate and groovy. Within two minutes, there is a flood of biting guitars and Will Toledo, the lead singer, is wailing into the microphone. This is the prototype for the usual Car Seat Headrest song.
You’ve seen him around. He may have zoomed past you on his electric scooter. You may have seen him in class wearing his trademark ski goggles. You may have even seen him on stage rapping. Kristofer Madu, aka Travis Karter, is that guy. A freshman International Studies major and an up-and-coming rapper, there is a lot more to him than many people know.
Music suffers some of the harshest disrespect of any of the arts. All too many people who consider themselves music fans (including me) often listen to music in the background while doing something else — grinding through work, driving or any other menial task. It is rare for anyone to sit down, clear their schedule and listen to an album.
This past Thursday, I found myself wandering down a rainy, vacant Baltimore street trying to find an event I had long been interested in attending: the Bmore BeatClub, a monthly event which is organized by Brandon Lackey, the owner of Lineup Room Recording Studios.