The Tape Deck: While I Was Spring Breakin'...

Monday, March 22, 2010

Six songs that appeared while I was charging the cranium batteries last week...and have thus engaged my attention.

Oh. This. Is. Good. The Foreign Exchange has a great family circle of performers in it's midst and Yahzarah  has become my favorite of the bunch. After listening to BlackStar and her luscious EP, The Prelude, Yahzarah's voice is definitely an attraction and hopefully it'll attract more ears with the release of her upcoming record, The Ballad of Purple St. James. A cut from the project, "Why Dontcha Call Me No More" was released and it is just excellent. You're reminded of Janelle Monae at the beginning due to the rampage of percussion, and then you're into something musically engaging that only the FE clan (who assist on all instruments) could do. And those lyrics are straight from the mouth of a woman scorned and she's pissed, even wishing love pains on her ex-lover's future offspring...spicy. Oh, and there is a guitar solo on this, which seems to be the unicorn in R&B music these days, once you spot it, you marvel and hope to see it again. So click the link above and get a free download of the track to hear the goodness I'm hearing.

I'm no fool. I remember when Robyn was telling a dude that she wanted him to "show her love" back in the late 90's before she went all "Cobrastyle" and got indie rock investments. I even remember picking up "Do You Know (What It Takes)" single cassette over at Walgreens back when that sort of thing was cool. Nice try fooling me, Robyn. But I dig what you've done with your career after the fact. Especially "Fembots" which will appear on one of three albums (she's doing a Maxwell trilogy album thingamabob), the Swedish vocalist will drop this year. The track (which debuted on her website only)  lives up to it's title, as its the Robocop dance of joy, if that describes it best.

After indulging in six (count 'em baby!) brand new cuts, off of Sia's upcoming fourth installment, We Are Born, things are sounding fine and dandy. Especially on the rolling guitar spunk of "The Fight". Instantly, I took to this charmer, and I'm thoroughly excited for whatever Sia throws our way on this new project. If "You've Changed" wasn't enough clue to the direction that Sia is taken, "The Fight" and other leaked tracks will sure let you know that the Aussie vocalist is going for a more peppier sound. She's not going all Kylie all of a sudden, but the change is welcomed. Click here to listen to 5 other songs off of We Are Born, that Sia has so graciously plastered on her webpage.

4. Kick Ass - Mika
When you have a song called "Kick Ass", you better bring it to the arena and not back down, and that's what the British pop vocalist has done with this appropriately titled track. The song is the theme track for the movie of the same name, and it's got Mika's robust personality all over it, making this a perfect fit. Mika sets his pipes ablaze on this as his falsetto is sounding better than Mariah Carey's these days (and I said that in the most constructive critical way as possible).
I pretty much like this, not love, but this is massively better than that shoddy, "We Are Golden" single it does prove that  that there is some life after "Grace Kelly".

A true no-brainer: It's Erykah Badu. It's an instrumental. It is called "Strawberry Incense". Case closed. You've got a winner here. The sound transcends like smoke from an incense stick and it's kind that woozy sound that I like from Erykah. Madlib is responsible for producing the hypnotic and fragrant groove and this is sure to appease Badu-ians, especially as the drop date for New Amerykah Part Two: Return of the Ankh draws closer. It is also apparent that Erykah Badu is keeping in the zen zone with her latest, as we can tell from the leaks that have been cropping up. Oh, March 30th, hurry the funkle up!

6. Nothing - Janet Jackson
It's sure been awhile since Janet Jackson has graced us with a ballad, so this was warmly welcomed, because dance divas need love too. Miss Jackson has contributed the ballad, "Nothing" to her new Tyler Perry movie, Why Did I Get Married Too, and it's quite lush. "Nothing" brings to mind what "Every Time" from The Velvet Rope was and it's tame,  Yes, she's sounding a lot like brother Michael on this, and it's not the most ambitious or greatest song, but it's a nice reminder of what Mama Jan Jan is capable of doing on the ballad front. And be surprised that Jermaine Dupri produced this, with Bryan Michael-Cox's writing credits. Applause for Dupri for toning things down and not letting Janet's voice drown in the production.

1 comment:

  1. I love the new YahZarah song, I'm definitely looking forward to her new album.


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