There were quite a few songs that I loved listening to, but Demi Lovato’s Unforgettable really stole the show for me. I’ll try and avoid using puns going forward, but this song is truly unforgettable. This track is dedicated to a man named Tommy Trussell who lost a battle with addiction.
You can clearly hear the emotion from her voice and to have the strength to put thoughts to paper and to sing about it is amazing. The other time in recent memory that I can think of is Yebba’s My Mind with Sofar Sounds back in 2016 in which it was a song dedicated to her mother.
Chills come down when Demi delivers those runs on those powerful lungs of hers. So much so that they shine through the production of the track. It’s a simple one for sure, but you’d be hard pressed to find a song that could contain the greatness of Demi. So better to keep it simple and elevate.
As the song goes, her friend Tommy asks her to not forget about him. Well now, he is immortalized. Couldn’t think of a better way to tribute someone you love so much.
We are at the end of another week and ending it on a bang with lordkez and Shekhinah with Belladonna. This track is a part of lordkez’s upcoming project Midsummer. I thought I had done a post before involving lordkez because I’ve seen her name in my social media news a lot, but as it turns out, I covered Shekhinah November last year with her song Tides.
The production is so infectious when you listen really closely. There is that surface level on top, but the magic happens around that bass. It’s not the same and switches up from time to time. There are even parts of it that reminds me of producer Sango when he would dabble in Brazilian trap music for his instrumentals.
The theme of the song sounds like it’s about an alternate ego of a woman named Belladonna and how she lives in a higher plane than us mortals. The way they sing about her (and probably themselves as her) makes you in awe of her. All of these platitudes and adjectives sung are fitting with the production and just how upbeat it is. Men (and women?) would give up so much just to spend some time with her and Belladonna is aware and makes sure she’s just a step ahead of everyone else.
The music video is simply a *chef’s kiss*. I am loving that the music videos for the past couple of years are introducing some fauna for the visuals. And aside from the plants and flowers, everyone on set was on point with their outfits. Can’t really put a word to it, but it is like seeing art come to life. The only time the character was broken was when lordkez was doing the second half of her verse. I’m not even saying anything was wrong because I really appreciate the details within the video. The song and video is a breath of fresh air audibly and visually. Gonna be on the lookout for her upcoming project Midsummer.
This week’s playlist is being headlined by London-based artist Sans Soucis and her latest single Games which features a voiceover from Italian politician Cécile Kyenge. This track is the second one on her EP On Time For Her and the focus track of the project.
“…a nod to Sans Soucis’ Congolese heritage. Sampling the sounds of Congolese Rumba (Franco Luambo), it is a deceptively playful sounding cut. Lyrically Giulia takes aim with a cut-throat commentary on Western superiority.”
The production IS deceptively playful. If you were to just have this on in the background the content would just fly right past you. I imagine this was all intentional to how she wanted to tackle this subject. Speaking of playful, the way she just glides through the field in her dress, you can tell she is enjoying herself. There could be some personal satisfaction that she has the agency to speak truth to power on her own terms.
This was the first question Sans posed on her website. After doing this blog for almost two years, you tend to loosen up on what you classify as R&B and the like. Everyone is different and this was the main reason why she is featured this week. Something out of the norm of what you hear, but as long as the music is good, no need to shy away.
This is a Bandcamp so I am going to direct you there first. SUPPORT YOUR ARTISTS!!!!
Turk singer Su Sonia leaves an impression on her latest single PARAŞÜT (Parachute). I love that Alt-R&B vibe as if I was listening to the older Weeknd stuff. The horns you hear throughout the song are a really good touch. I can feel the emotion come from her voice from verses and not so much the chorus. She gets so focused and you hear that coming through in the audio.
Another clue of just how focused she was during this song is the opening sequence of the music video. Spotify did a good job of hiding what the music video was about because the loop was just Su Sonia walking towards an opening. Little did I know, she was going to put on a one-person performance. All she had was a mic and if that wasn’t enough, someone was controlling the lights to signal the transition from chorus to verse. She also has some choreography weaved in this single shot performance. So she was busy from beginning to end of the video. I wonder how many times she had to do reshoots to get it all in one take, but she looked like she was enjoying herself.
I’m sure you also noticed that there was no Cover Art Artist post for this week. I am thinking about shelving it for now. I like it, but I think there is some redundancy with that. So I’m going to try a more efficient way of getting my content out here for you all. Enjoy your weekend everyone and also enjoy this week’s playlist.
Trying my best to get back into the swing of things. Parents can confirm this for me. There is no day exactly the same as a parent for a newborn. Routines are non-existent, but I move on. So this week isn’t a full curation, but I like the amount I have in this week’s list and we are going to raise up Kirby this week and her latest single Coconut Oil.
Just as the oil drips from her hair, you can hear the swag that Kirby is giving off in the track. And she doesn’t have a lot of time to get it done with just over 2 minutes of runtime she has to hit the ground running. She gets on the track just showing off just how good she’s got it and how great she’s feeling. Then it blends into the chorus telling you just how thirsty you are, but only to see and not touch.
I am loving the fast-paced production from the track. It’s has that old school feel, but some modern elements you can hear like during the chorus. Silk Sonic could do a live version of this with Kirby doing the lead vocals. Of course this is just wishful thinking, but maybe the Motown vibes can make a comeback. The collabs are out there with all the talent we have currently.
Call this an unofficial return to one of my loves. I’m not putting an official banner for this week because I’m just trying to get into the groove of things. Heck, I didn’t even get enough time to do a thorough curation, but when you are spending time with the newborn and fam, some things aren’t as important. However, I managed to scrounge something together. So instead of talking about some of the singles, let’s glance at some of the projects that came out last week.
Jay B released a new EP called SOMO: FUME which has Switch It Up featuring sokodomo on the track. They were featured back in May this year.
(((O))) (which is unpronounceable on purpose by the way) has dropped their third album (((3))). To make it easy, just reference them as The Sundrop Garden. This is an ongoing project that is going to end up being 12 albums in total ending in 2032. I’ve been following since the first album and they’ve been quality.
Kehlani, although not a new release, made her first mixtape Cloud 19 available for all streaming platforms outside of Soundcloud. It’s the 7th anniversary since it’s release and she wanted to celebrate with everyone.
South African artist Una Rams released his own mixtape, Hold Me When It’s Cold: Mixtape. Some of the artists he has on the mixtape include Langa Mavuso, Mikhale Jones, and Blxckie
Just a peach of a song from Swindle called Darkest Hour which has Poppy Ajudha and Daley. It was hard to choose one this week, but I think it was the horns on the track that helped push this song over. You have a strong team with this three with impeccable production and quality voices. This track is about letting that friend know you can be depended on. That is a beautiful message that needs to be heard from time to time.
On the production front, I haven’t heard a track so smooth in a while like this. Quality adult contemporary this song is. You can hear it in the horns most of all and really shapes the track. It’s almost like listening to a Mayer Hawthorne track in some sense. The vocal arrangement caught my attention by how the two singers appeared on the track. Poppy gave the first verse then Daley would give the pre-chorus and then it reverses. So we get to hear them both in all aspects of the song. The chemistry is really good. I’m a little biased towards Daley as I was able to see him live in concert years ago. Still sound amazing as he did so long ago.
Finally let’s give kudos to the man who is putting the music together, Swindle. When I go back to the catalog of R&B songs over the past 3-5 years with various artists like Mahalia, Greenteng Peng, and Kojey Radical to name a few, now I’ll know who the mastermind behind the music.
I knew from the hook of DNA that a l l I e and Daniela Andrade gave us something special. The Canadian connection between these ladies has delivered, preemptively, the best track in a l l i e’s new project. The production feels so new and ethereal and that has my brain just tingling. One of the other things I love about the track is how they deliver the chorus in different ways. The expression of the voices when they “beg” and “DNA” are either held notes or comes in high and leaves low. It doesn’t leave a stale after taste.
What’s interesting with the lyrics is that they sing about not begging for the other person’s love. In fact, they are singing how the other person wants it and how they should be working for it.
Show me what you know about it; Tell me that you can’t go without it; (Tell me why)
a l l i e ft. Daniela Andrade – DNA
It sucks that there is no music video for this because I can only imagine the scene of two strong women in a l l i e and Daniela coming through on set and when all of a sudden either one comes out and says I could never beg. It’s not in my DNA.
Somali-Canadian singer Amaal released her first single, Honey, from her upcoming EP Milly. This track feels like a throwback based on the production from Nicky Davey and a few seconds I was in the late 90s again. It felt nostalgic, but updated for 2021 at the same time. And again, that’s credit to the producer for getting this right. Amaal’s voice feels so smooth throughout the song and I never got tired of hearing her sing. Then you toss in all the extra edits with her voice and that choir-esque singing “Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah” in the background gives you a well put song.
The music video has so much going on with the different scenes. You have her coming off the personal jet taking command of the camera and then having her stroll through the abandoned jail (although I thought that was the most random part, like “Why here?”). And there’s the scene where she’s getting scanned while laying down. But the scene I love was the one where she’s in the bathtub with the illumination of the sun in the background. The “red” bounces off well on Amaal. She knows what she’s working with and you see and hear the confidence she gives in her lyrics. The delivery was one of the aspects of the song that stood out. This is a great song to get some of that 90s vibe in your life.
As I went through the songs again this week trying to figure out which song it’s going to be, I heard Playa Limbo’s Luces de Sal once again and it was a wrap. In fact, the production for this song alone feels like a cheat code because it reminds me SO MUCH of Prince and I can’t help but to put this on repeat. I’ll do my best to not try and compare the two, but I’ll say some quick think’s about the instrumentation. The keys, drums, the strings and bass really gives that combination of Elton John and Prince as to where the inspiration is coming from. Even the vocals saying the “oohs” in quick bursts give those nostalgia vibes like it’s a Prince production.
The music video has the vocalist, Jass Reyes, as the subject where no one else moves and the entire setting filtered in black and white. I wonder if it’s harder to perform when you have nothing to feed from. However, Jass was giving her all in the video. The facial expressions she was giving were everything. Even the way she looked at the camera, it had you mesmerized. Also, randomly, if you look at the bald guy at the end (I don’t know everyone else’s names), you can see he holds his head differently throughout the video. It’s hard to remain “frozen” for so long and through so many takes so I have to commend him for doing his best.
I gave Playa Limbo a shoutout back in Cover Art Nominees: Week 75. I didn’t think they would just muscle their way up so fast in my radar. This would be preaching to the choir, but they are really good. With the string of music being released from them lately, it looks like these could be a part of their Universo Amor EP collection where this is the last of the four on its way. GIve this group a listen.