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Sound Check's Blog (2,805)

NEW MUSIC: Brazilian alt rock legends Mickey Junkies Return With Their Latest 'Since You've Been Gone' #SoundCheck

Founded in 1991, Mickey Junkies have become recognized as one of the pioneers of Brazillian alt-rock. Their sound remains rooted in the alt-metal and post-hardcore sounds of the early 90's, singer Rodrigo Carneiro's low baritone rings out over the band's slow sludgy riffs. Their latest record, the primarily English language Since You've Been Gone, adds NWOBHM influences to the sound and goes all in on the genre's blues influence with the odd harmonica lick. Opener…

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Added by Sound Check on February 21, 2017 at 6:29pm — No Comments

London jazz duo Blue Lab Beats is soulful alchemy for your ears

What do you get when you combine electric guitar, synth bass, a hip hop sensibility and two young musicians with a world imagination? The answer is Blue Lab Beats. The British duo is drawing on the Dilla and neo soul’s legacy of fusing hip hop, jazz and soul, and making a brand of contemporary jazz that would fit equally well at Essence festival as it would in a 90s coffee shop in West Philadelphia. In this video from Jazz FM, you’ll see duo absolutely kill their set, with…

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Added by Sound Check on February 21, 2017 at 1:32pm — No Comments

Five reasons why Nina Simone is a timeless Queen



Nina Simone would have been 84 years old today and in thinking about her contributions to Black thought, music, style, and activism, we can’t think of a single reason why she shouldn’t be celebrated. Take a look at these five reasons why Nina Simone was and is a timeless queen.





By T. McLendon, AFROPUNK Contributor






Musical Excellence: Nina was a gifted pianist and singer, a…

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Added by Sound Check on February 21, 2017 at 10:00am — No Comments

VIDEO PREMIERE: DC electronica duo Thievery Corporation get groovy yet political in Jamaica in video for “Letter to the Editor”

Thievery Corporation sounds like a diabolical enterprise at the center of a Marvel film, but in this universe, they’re the electronica duo infusing the sounds of Jamaica into the synth-based grooves of tomorrow. In their new visual for “Letter to the Editor”, they call on the talents of Racquel Jones, a Kingston spitter with a knack for obliterating instrumentals, and let her loose on the track to do as she pleased. The song is equal parts tropical and trippy, full of…

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Added by Sound Check on February 20, 2017 at 10:18am — No Comments

PREMIERE: Debut From Chicago Avant-Funk Trio Bottle Tree, “Open Secret,” Combines Spirituality and African Rhythms

The spirit of Chicago’s Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians (AACM), the 51-years-old-and-running-strong powerhouse of black American avant-garde, runs deeply through “Open Secret,” the first track from Bottle Tree. The sound that the trio — composer/cornetist/synth player Ben Lamar Gay, vocalist/percussionist/scholar A.M. Frison, and Italian drummer Tommaso Moretti — evoke is what one imagines the great Art Ensemble of Chicago would have sounded like if…

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Added by Sound Check on February 17, 2017 at 1:45pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: SZA joins forces with producer Kingdom for seductive new single ‘What Is Love’

Like, it’s still not the album, but it’s pretty good. SZA and producer DJ Kingdom collaborated for their swagged out R&B-soul single ‘What Is Love’. Stamped with SZA’s trademark alt-R&B ambiance and embellished with Kingdom’s club-ready instrumentals. ‘What is Love’ is taken from Kingdom’s forthcoming project “Tears In The Club”, out Feb. 24. Check it out, below.…





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Added by Sound Check on February 16, 2017 at 4:51pm — No Comments

This white South African DJ says she's Black

Race is weird and tricky and convoluted and means different things to different people, and even differently to folks in different countries. In South Africa, a commercial house DJ named Anita Ronge and more commonly known as Kasi Mlungu or DJ DuchAz has claimed that she is often criticized for not being Black enough. The issue is that she’s supposedly not Black at all. As a white South African, she can “act Black” by adopting Black customs and slang, surrounding herself…

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Added by Sound Check on February 16, 2017 at 11:41am — No Comments

French ambient soul duo Ibeyi returns with stark and enchanting single ‘Lost In My Mind’

Ibeyi took the world by storm in 2015, combining the Afro-Cuban sounds inherited from their father and European downtempo to create a brand of soul that we’d never heard before. The French twins, Lisa-Kaindé and Naomi Diaz lit a spark and filled a void that many have not been able to find elsewhere. In their new single “Lost In My Mind,” the duo sings of being in a sort of warped headspace, exploring and retreating from the crevasses in the psyche and what they find there.…

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Added by Sound Check on February 15, 2017 at 1:33pm — No Comments

PREMIERE: Montreal rock crooner Dear Denizen is yearning for love in new single, “Mary Love”

For those of us who are partner-less on February 14th, Valentine’s Day can be a day of melancholy, or even nostalgic and the soundtrack to those feelings are encapsulated by this new track by Dear Denizen. For every time I’ve thought, “I would steal your heart, if I could, I would steal your heart,” Dear Denizen puts it into words the feeling of longing and distance of unrequited love. It’s true that this day is supposed to be about love, but sometimes love is sad and…

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Added by Sound Check on February 14, 2017 at 12:17pm — No Comments

PREMIERE: Hardcore rockers Louder Than Quiet deliver a brilliant cover of “Ain’t Nobody” by Chaka Khan for Valentine’s Day

Warning: if you’re not awake, get your coffee, pick up your headphones and headbang to this amazing cover of Chaka Khan’s “Ain’t Nobody” by Louder Than Quiet. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the post-hardcore version of this soul and R&B classic is sure to knock you off your feet.Louder Than Quiet is a 5-piece melodic death metal and post-hardcore band from Upper Marlboro, MD. The making of this record for them was extremely personal and is captured by this quote from…

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Added by Sound Check on February 14, 2017 at 10:02am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stream Sinkane's Masterpiece 'Life & Livin It' #SoundCheck

Sinkane's been a favorite around here since his stint in Yeasayer. His previous solo effort, Mean Love was a taught electro-soul outing. But on his latest, the child of Sudanese refugees looks back to the music he was raised on, injecting Life & Livin It with traces of high life, Afrobeat, and Tuareg melodies. The result is an album that David Byrne could only ever have dreamed of making. The 8-bit synths opening “Deadweight” lead into a bluesy jam, while…

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Added by Sound Check on February 13, 2017 at 4:00pm — No Comments

Canadian soulstress Tanika Charles is breaking free from her 9 to 5 for her passion in new “Soul Run” video

Everybody has a dream and not everybody gets there, but Tanika Charles isn’t letting anything hold her back. In her new single “Soul Run,” Tanika is pressing towards the mark, leaving behind the fear and embracing the uncertainty of forging her own path. Tanika said, “The video depicts me leaving me day job to pursue my passion, Soul Run is about empowerment. After being locked down in a suffocating relationship (kind of like a 9-5 that you aren't happy with) I decided to… Continue

Added by Sound Check on February 13, 2017 at 11:18am — 1 Comment

Mykki Blanco claps back at store clerk telling him to “Stop playing in dresses”

International sensation Mykki Blanco is known for being the most outspoken, larger-than-life, unapologetic queer rapper in the game was recently accosted by a store owner in Germany ahead of his sold-out show there. Mykki is a self-professed “gay man who loves drag” and many people don’t understand, accept, or tolerate self expression as freely as one would hope. In a recent video tour diary, he documents the encounter and immediately says, "She thought she could talk to me… Continue

Added by Sound Check on February 10, 2017 at 12:29pm — No Comments

NAO teams up with Kaytranada, SBTRKT & more for remix EP

NAO had a breakout year in 2016, complete with a European and American tour, and an album that was bursting at the seams with electronic, hip hop, and R&B sounds. To add to her accolades, she’s joined forces with Kaytranada, SBTRKT, Sam Gellaitry and more to remix the album “For All We Know” and the outcome is massive. The standout tracks like “Bad Blood,” “Feels Like,” and “In The Morning” all get the care of some of the most impressive and talented producers in the…

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Added by Sound Check on February 10, 2017 at 12:08pm — No Comments

PREMIERE: UK soul crooner Milo Tain is bringing neo soul back in his new single “The Look”

The funk is in full effect and the youth are taking notice. 22 year old artist Milo Tain is combining R&B, funk and soul in a rush of grooves and pulsing rhythms in new single ‘The Look.’ The track is Milo's first solo output which is reminiscent of a 90’s sound, reminiscent of Philly re-invented for a modern audience. Featuring fresh, airy harmonies, compelling rhythms and a confident yet dreamy vocal performance that creates nostalgia and further intrigue. While it’s… Continue

Added by Sound Check on February 10, 2017 at 11:28am — No Comments

PREMIERE: UK R&B songstress Purple Ferdinand delivers breathtaking love sounds in new EP “Rain or Shine”

Neo soul music had its hey day in the late 90s and early 2000s, with Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, D’Angelo and Musiq Soulchild leading the charge. Contemporarily, there’s been a resurgence in interest in this approach to soul music, and UK songstress Purple Ferdinand is creating these vibes in her new project "The Rain or shine EP.” The 7-track EP approaches love, relationships, growth, and inner peace in unique ways. One of the standout tracks is the intro entitled “Stay.” It… Continue

Added by Sound Check on February 10, 2017 at 11:00am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Sampha Turns Grief Into Mesmerizing Electro-Soul On Impressive Debut 'Process' #SoundCheck

The specter of cancer haunts Sampha's Process. The electro-soul singer songwriter lost his father in 1998 and his mother in 2015, and finds himself reflecting on their loss, as well as his own mortality throughout the record. Songs like “Plastic 100ºC,” “Blood on Me,” and “Kora Sings” are full of grief and longing, confusion and fear.”You've been with me since the cradle...please don't you disappear.” The album marries Sampha's grief to inventive minimalist electro-soul,…

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Added by Sound Check on February 9, 2017 at 5:59pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Rhymeslayer Nappy Nina joins forces with Stas THEE Boss & Moruf for a boom bap gem “Ahmad”

It seems that bars and beats are still the most lethal combination on the planet and spitter Nappy Nina joined forces with Stas THEE Boss and Moruf for a boom bap gem entitled “Ahmad. If the 90s is commonly known as the golden era of hip hop, then lately it seems that emcees have forged the iron age, sharpening their lines and aesthetics to come out full force to bring back the legendary in these sonic masterpieces. The wordplay, flow, and soundscape courtesy of…

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Added by Sound Check on February 9, 2017 at 2:00pm — No Comments

PREMIERE: Toronto soul songstress TiK▲ poetically protesting police brutality in “All Day, All Night”

Black artists are coming full force with protest music in 2017 and TiK▲ lends her voice to the struggle in this retrospective track “All Day, All Night”. The Toronto soul singer-songwriter TiK▲ is aiming to champion the excellence of Black womanhood as a central theme in her music. Since releasing her 2nd EP “Carry On” to mass critical acclaim in the fall of 2016, TiK▲ has returned “All Day, All Night,” a single written from the perspective of a Black girl struggling to…

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Added by Sound Check on February 9, 2017 at 10:30am — No Comments

NOW STREAMING: AFROPUNK Mixtape #026: No Fears Expressed

Happy Black History Month! AFROPUNK Mixtape #027: No Fears Expressed features music by Young Fathers, Blak Emoji, Linda La Beija, Pay To Cum, The Dears, Erzulie, and more, with special interludes by Angela Davis, Janet Mock, and Steve Biko. Stream AFROPUNK Mixtape #027: No Fears Expressed down below and on …

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Added by Sound Check on February 9, 2017 at 10:00am — No Comments

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