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Sound Check's Blog (2,145)

NEW MUSIC: Brazilian Psych-Blues Duo Mescalines Lives Up To Their Namesake On Self-Titled Debut #SoundCheck

If you happen to find yourself driving down a sun-drenched desolate road today (preferably on a motorcycle), I've got your soundtrack. (Also, please take me with you? I'm under a foot of snow in Boston with no end in sight. I'm a good navigator and will bring snacks...) Brazil's Mescalines take their hallucinogenic namesake seriously with their tripped out debut LP. An 8 track collection of tripped out swampy instrumental psych-blues jams, the record was reportedly cut in 5…

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Added by Sound Check on February 12, 2016 at 7:07pm — No Comments

VIDEO PREMIERE: Check out Down North’s anti-valentines day singles celebration of-a-video ‘tO heLL WitH LoVe’

Oh, to be young and to feel love’s keen sting, a wise wizard once said. Alternative soul rockers Down North’s anti-Valentine's Day single ‘tO heLL WitH LoVe’ pokes much fun at the sheer ridiculousness that is so…

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Added by Sound Check on February 12, 2016 at 5:30pm — No Comments

FEATURE: Black Punk History—British DJ and musician Don Letts of Big Audio Dynamite

Don Letts is a man who has worn many hats. Before he started making music, he ran London’s clothing store Acme Attraction—a fetish thrift store that sold flashy, grimy punk clothes that attracted the likes of The Clash, Sex Pistols, Patti Smith, Debbi Harry, and Bob Marley. Acme ended up being one of the most important hubs for England’s burgeoning punk scene, spawning other spaces and venues to attract similar audiences, like the Roxy, where Letts would DJ. Instead of…

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Added by Sound Check on February 12, 2016 at 3:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: The Epistle of Zyaire Rosier Explores The Conflicts Within Faith #SoundCheck

I'll be honest: my ears tend to glaze over preemptively when faced with music with overtly religious themes. Art to me is a process of making sense of the world, and the least interesting art is that which self-righteously proclaims: “just follow me! I have it all figured out!” But there's something special and rare about Zyaire Rosier's The Epistle of Zyaire Rosier: doubt, hope, and a need for redemption that vastly outweighs any desire to proselytize. (Not to mention some…

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Added by Sound Check on February 10, 2016 at 5:04pm — No Comments

FEATURE: Black Punk History—proto-punk rockers from Detroit, DEATH

Alright, the time has come, my little friends, to talk of many thing, but first let’s talk about DEATH! Woo! A few of you were worried we had forgotten about these legends, but how could we? DEATH are the quintessential proto-punk band formed in Detroit by brother Bobby (bass, vocals), David (guitar), and Dannis (drums) Hackney. Like many, DEATH were inspired early on by The Beatles. After witnessing their first performance on The Ed Sullivan Show, David found a discarded,…

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Added by Sound Check on February 10, 2016 at 4:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Grime Producer Darq E Freaker Takes the Spotlight On '#Don'tFreakOut' #SoundCheck

UK Grime producer Darq E Freaker has mostly been known as a standout supporting player on various Danny Brown tracks, and a purveyor of the occasional instrumental grime cut, but on his latest #Don'tFreakOut, he makes a run for breakout-star-status. With an army of collaborators delivering guest vocals, some entries fare better than others, while the absence of certain past collaborators is a minor letdown (I understand that Danny Brown might be a hard get right now, but… Continue

Added by Sound Check on February 9, 2016 at 3:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Blakface and SeanWyze Get Deep In “On The Edge” #SoundCheck

With a chemistry reminiscent of Talib Kweli, Mos Def, and Hi-Tek at their Black Star best, Blakface, SeanWyze, and Guilty Simpson's “On The Edge” is the kind of stripped down classic that people used to call “conscious” back when Def Jux and Rawkus were still happening and before everyone agreed that was a stupid way to describe music. (See also: Intelligent Dance Music). The track hits on major issues from student debt to police violence to cultural appropriation…

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Added by Sound Check on February 8, 2016 at 5:30pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Singer-songwriter Amber Mark releases refreshing alternative RandB single 'SPACE'

Listen to ‘SPACE’, the first single from alternative RandB singer Amber Mark. This is a really substantial first release from the newcomer who combines tribal and soul music and her childhood in India to influence her colorful and nuanced sound, which ends all too soon.



Listen to the track down below and let us know what you think.…



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Added by Sound Check on February 8, 2016 at 2:43pm — 1 Comment

FEATURE: Black Punk History—brace-faced Irish-Somali singer and X-Ray Spex frontwoman Poly Styrene

Poly Styrene was a braces-wearing, singer/songwriter, and frontwoman of X-Ray Spex. Styrene was born in 1957, in the UK, to Irish and Somali parents. By the time she turned 16, Styrene had run away from home and was already (unofficially) on the road, following bands and hitchhiking from one music festival to the next. By 18, she began recording what would be her first demo, which was a mixture of punk and ska influences. It wasn’t until a year later when Styrene went to a…

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Added by Sound Check on February 8, 2016 at 11:33am — No Comments

GIVEAWAY: Come to Awa Ly's Private Album Listening/Live Performance in Paris Feb. 15

AFROPUNK Family in France/Paris: We're inviting you to an intimate private listening of jazz-folk songstress Awa Ly's new album 'Five and a feather' February 15 at 6:30pm.

Awa Ly will be there to present the album track by track and to play a few tracks Live!

FR: Places à gagner pour une écoute privée du nouvel album d'Awa Ly en présence de l'artiste à Paris le 15 Février à 18h30!

The album features tracks with Faada Freddy, Paco Sery, Greg Cohen, Ballake…

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Added by Sound Check on February 8, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments

FEATURE: BLACK PUNK HISTORY—Badass drummer Karla Maddog

Drummer Karla Maddog joined The Controlers in early 1978, where her charismatic personality, impressive skills on the drum kit, and funnily enough, her PR skills played a major role in thrusting the band into a short string of successes (the release of ‘Suburban Suicide’ and tracks on legendary punk compilation ‘Tooth and Nail’) before their 1979 break-up. This was only the beginning for Maddog who briefly moved to England to play in Sexsick with Black Flags’ Kira…

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Added by Sound Check on February 5, 2016 at 4:13pm — 1 Comment

AFROPUNK PREMIERE: London-based ambient RandB singer ECHOES drops sexy, somber ode to heartbreak anthem, ‘Valentine’ #SoundCheck

London-based ambient RandB singer Echoes’ new single 'Valentine' is a sexy, somber ode to the break-up. Its the cynical sludge that coats one’s heart once you emerge from the tunnel of love, empty-handed and much colder. "The track is about being ‘over’ love - all the cheesy films and Valentines Day cards- you can keep them because it all feels like smoke & mirrors when you’ve just broken up with someone. There’s always a point after a break up when you think-…

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Added by Sound Check on February 5, 2016 at 3:02pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Indie go-go band RDGLDGRN releases new spaced out single, "Just A Lie"

RDGLDGRN is an indie go-go band from suburban Virginia that fuses hip-hop, post-punk, neo-soul into a creation that sounds like…well, like RDGLDGRN. Their latest release, “Just A Lie” is a nebulous combination of peculiar marching band-inspired percussion, staccato synth, and slick…

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Added by Sound Check on February 4, 2016 at 7:07pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Minority Threat's 'Culture Control' Is An Instant Hardcore Classic #SoundCheck

With a name like Minority Threat (and a photo of the band freezing in mid-air) there's really only two ways this could have gone: kinda corny NOFX-style pop punk overripe with movie catchphrases and “jokes” that are doomed to be dated in a week at least half of which are borderline misogynistic, or blistering issues-based hardcore with an innate sixth sense what to take seriously and what not to. Luckily for us, it's the second. Minority Threat's Culture Control is…

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Added by Sound Check on February 4, 2016 at 5:10pm — 1 Comment

VIDEO PREMIERE: Experimental soul singer/songwriter Nicholas Ryan Gant drops Kriswontwo-produced pre-summertime jam, ‘Everyone’

Experimental soul singer/songwriter Nicholas Ryan Gant drops his brand new single, ‘Everything’, exclusively for AFROPUNK. The track, a collaboration with producer Kriswontwo, is a blend of futuristic RandB where electronic zips and dings…

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Added by Sound Check on February 4, 2016 at 4:30pm — No Comments

VIDEO PREMIERE: Brazilian rapper Moah's freestyle track 'Basquiat'

Check out this freestyle video from Brazilian rapper Moah preforming ‘Basquiat’, a track about the lifestyle of black Brazilian and the rich creative culture of the community. “The song is also about doing it yourself, because we can’t wait for our corrupt government to have an awakening, this needs to come from ourselves. We can’t be "hostages of the status quo, can’t be 'new slaves’,” Moah tells AFROPUNK.



By Erin White*, AFROPUNK…

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Added by Sound Check on February 4, 2016 at 11:00am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: 'New Toy' from singer/songwriter STELLA

New music from New York-based singer/songwriter Stella (daughter of Carlos Santana). Her recent single, ‘New Toy’ is a dreamy soundscape of velvety, experimental RandB. A little bit of jazz, a little indie rock, and a whole lot of heart. ‘New Toy’ describes the vulnerability of starting a new relationship, the potential for heartbreak, and the…

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Added by Sound Check on February 3, 2016 at 6:30pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stunner Eryn Allen Kane releases second half of debut project 'Aviary: Act II'

Yesterday, my high-key favorite singer ATM Eryn Allen Kane released the second half of her highly anticipated debut project, ‘Aviary: Act II’—a hair-raising sampling of mostly energetic vintage soul songs, punctuated by understated instrumentation on tracks like ‘How Many Times’. Kane guides us through both Act I and Act II with her…

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Added by Sound Check on February 3, 2016 at 5:41pm — No Comments

FEATURE: Black Punk History—Punk Pioneers Bad Brains

For the newbs, Bad Brains are one of the most influential hardcore punk bands, ever. Brains was formed in Washington, D.C circa 1977 by H.R. aka Human Rights aka Paul Hudson, Earl Hudson, Darryl Jenifer, Sid McCray, Gary Miller aka Dr. Know as the short-lived jazz fusion ensemble Mind Power, an experimental project that would ultimately lead to the bands shift away from metal and introduction to punk. From there, their sound continued to evolve,…

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Added by Sound Check on February 3, 2016 at 1:30pm — No Comments

AFROPUNK PREMIERE: Indie-folk sister act Xylaroo drops feel-good first single, 'Sunshine'

Xylaroo is a tight-knit, London-based sister-duo making feel good indie folk music for the wander’s soul. Their first single, ‘Sunshine’, is a dose of infectious lightness coupled with pure optimism you might only find from people who have seen and experienced many different ways of life. Which makes a lot of sense given the sister’s nomadic upbringing. Only…

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Added by Sound Check on February 3, 2016 at 12:30pm — No Comments

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