R&B and soul took a dark turn when synths got good enough to almost realistically replicate the sound of a full orchestra in the late 80's. A sound more or less defined by raw human emotion and lush (AKA expensive) arrangements traded a big chunk of it's human element in exchange for “sure that sounds enough like a violin and just saved us a few hundred bucks in session fees!” So it's encouraging to see the triumphant return of the orchestra in R&B. The latest in this…Continue
It's maybe weird to call yourself a fan of a band after only hearing one track, but that's how it went with American Fangs. The first time I heard “Le Kick” on the Afropunk Vol 2 comp I was hooked. I hunted for their album. But no luck. Since 2009 they've released a few singles and an EP and a WWE theme song because why the hell not?…Continue
Added by Sound Check on May 15, 2013 at 9:00am — No Comments
For those of you who were wondering if electro-punk-hip-hop band Death Grips were 1) still together and 2) planning on releasing new music, the answer is: yes and yes. In a recent statement, the band clarified a few things: "Zach is currently writing, directing and soundtracking an original feature film. The movie is of his own creation, fictionally based and not related to the group. The film will be soundtracked with all new Death Grips music. He is also working on and…Continue
Added by Sound Check on May 13, 2013 at 1:50pm — No Comments
There are some collaborations that seem like they'd make perfect sense on paper, and yet somehow fail to work. (I remember being so excited when I first heard that one of the 90's greatest singers - Chris Cornell - would be teaming up with the 90's greatest rhythm section - Rage Against the Machine - for what turned out to be the 2000's most meh band. No matter how good they may taste separately, nobody wants a peanut butter and goat cheese sandwich.) Then there are other…Continue
Added by Sound Check on May 13, 2013 at 1:15pm — No Comments
What do you know about Sharon Jones & the Dap-Kings? Did you check their new song "Retreat!"? It's a cut off their new album 'Give The People What They Want', to be released August 6th. If you pre-order the album on iTunes you'll get the track "Retreat!" immediately.…Continue
Bam! Pump up the volume and check out hip-hop artist/Def Poetry Jam alum Narubi Selah's new album 'Architect: Sacred Geometry'. The girl goes IN, speaking her mind about social issues, art and more in an explosive brand of slam.
Check out two hard-hitting cuts from the album below and click HERE to download it and listen to…
Metal has always had a fixation on the mystical and magical. From the occult and demonic fixation of doom metal to the D&D Monster Manual of power metal. The fierce low guitar, thundering drums, and classical technicality convey something larger than life, something more epic than ordinary reality. So it makes perfect sense that UK based Vodun would base their music around West African Vodun rituals and Loa (Haitian elemental spirits).…Continue
It's hard not to love pop music that you can get lost in. Far too often the artists get as far as a killer hook and declare “good enough.” More and more pop music just kind of coasts without bothering to flesh songs out with arrangements worthy of their hooks. So you have to respect a band like Meridian who pack their tracks with layers upon layers of texture and detail.…Continue
Added by Sound Check on May 6, 2013 at 8:30am — No Comments
Malian musician Bassekou Kouayte comes from a rich musical and storytelling history. He was born to a musician father Mustapha and mother Yagare Damba a praise singer, so it makes sense that he carries the unquestionable pedigree of African blues. He further explores the cultural shift and broadens its music as Kouyate rises among the Mali musicians alongside greats Ali Farka Toure, Salif Keita, Oumou Sangare and Toumani Diabate.
Review by Jon Jon…
Added by Sound Check on May 6, 2013 at 8:26am — No Comments
Free Download! Check genre-defying Tricky's new track 'Tribal Drums' featuring Francesca Belmonte. This cut is from his upcoming album 'False Idols' (due out May 28). Last month we told you about the video for 'Does It', another track off the album also featuring Francesca Belmonte. + in case you missed it, get another free track download…Continue
Botswana-based death/metal band Wrust released their new song 'Spiral of Torture'. You may remember their video we featured years ago and now they're back with a new album. Rock on! - L.
Added by Sound Check on April 29, 2013 at 12:50pm — No Comments
If you're a fan of retro soul and Motown sounds, Latasha Lee and her band The BlackTies got just what you need. A big admirer of Etta James, Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke, Lee offers melodies, style and visuals celebrating the greats. Check out some of her videos below and let us know what you think. Latasha Lee & The Blackties' self-titled album is out now on …Continue
This is gonna be hot! UK funkateer-in-chief Omar Lye-Fook's new album is coming soon (June 2013? - there's an album release party in London on June 28). The tracklist and first single have surfaced. The record will feature collaborations with Caron Wheeler (Soul II Soul) and Pino Palladino.
You can stream the single 'The Man' below…
Get funky! The new Janelle Monae single 'Q.U.E.E.N.' featuring Erykah Badu that we told you about is out now. Stream/download it below to hear them sing (and rap!) their asses off while you wait for Janelle's Monae's new album 'The Electric Lady' + check out a spot on review from AFROPUNK contributor Justin…Continue
Oh shit! Looks like Quasimoto (producer Madlib's alter ego) will be releasing an album soon. Yesterday Quasimoto teased his Facebook followers, posting: "Now playing -- Quasimoto "Yessir Whatever" LP test press". Which would mean that the album has already been recorded and is ready to go. Supporters have been waiting since 2005 for a new LP.…Continue
Have you heard the news? Wu-Tang Clan's new album will be called 'A Better Tomorrow' and will be released in July 2013.
+ it's the 20th anniversary of their debut album 'Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)'.
Click here right away to rock to Prince's latest single 'FIXURLIFEUP'.
+ Prince just launched his Live Out Loud tour at a party last night in Vancouver, Canada. Guitarist Donna Grantis told The Huffington Post: "It's going to be a full-on rock…
Janelle Monae announced that her upcoming single is a collaboration with Erykah Badu, to be released on April 22 at 7:54pm EST (precisely! Better not be 7:55pm or else...). The track, titled 'Q.U.E.E.N.', will be the first cut off Monae's new album 'The Electric Lady' (still waiting on an official release date for that…Continue
On a warm April afternoon, I walked over to the Daptone offices to meet soul singer Charles Bradley. Just a few blocks away from my apartment in northern Bed Stuy, the label office and studio are housed in an old Brooklyn brownstone. So unassuming, I nearly missed it. This is the famed Daptone records headquarters? I walked by three times before realizing where it was. Inside I met Charles. 64 and just getting started, the Screaming Eagle of Soul somehow matched the building. On…Continue
Added by Sound Check on April 12, 2013 at 9:00am — No Comments
Cee-Lo reportedly said that the new Goodie Mob album will be like "Public Enemy on acid". 'Age Against the Machine' is the band's first album in 9 years and will be released on June 18. Are you looking forward to the release?…Continue