Hey everyone, hope you’re keeping well and healthy. It’s still Black Lives Matter and still we need justice for Breonna Taylor, Oluwatoyin Salau and the saddening amount of other people getting killed. Once again if you’d like information or resources regarding these protests and funds to donate to and support, click here.
As for the music side of things, it’s been a good few weeks for music, so without further ado, let’s get into it!
Black Women’s music to support yesterday, today and tomorrow
Black is beautiful. Black is soulful. With so much incredible music coming out on a weekly basis, it can be sometimes difficult to keep track of it all. And Black Women have been making some of the most exciting, soulful, experimental and beautiful music for the longest time. They deserve their flowers and a platform for their art. Below is a list of incredible musicians, mainly based in the UK and the US, that in my view, you should listen to and support. Because of the sheer amount of incredible Black Women making art, there will most likely be a part II and part III to this. Read more
I’ve also compiled an ever-growing Spotify playlist dedicated to Black Women so make sure you check that out and give it a follow!
SAULT’s new album UNTITLED (Black Is) is Black strength, Black emotion, and raw Black power through music that sounds soulful, groovy and spiritually uplifting
UNTITLED (Black Is) is Black beauty personified. It is Black struggle personified. It is Black strength, it is Black emotion, it is raw Black power through music that sounds soulful, groovy and spiritually uplifting. SAULT have proved yet again why they are the most exciting band to come out in recent years, and their enigmatic and mysterious presence makes them even more exciting. This is a phenomenal album that captures so much incredible energy that I will be playing this for a very long time. Read more
Ras G – Raw Fruit Vol. 5 & 6
Man I do miss Ras G’s presence on this planet. The late beat legend has a brand new album out, a continuation of his Raw Fruit series. Raw Fruit Vol. 5 & 6 features colourful and infectious beats, from the heavy and spaceous opener “De La Soul” to the cosmic and groovy closer “Nah Im Straight.” The way his beats are able to meander between groovy and soulful to more piercing and hard-hitting is incredible, really capturing his aura and talents with ease and utter beauty. I hope you’re in a peaceful and blissful place, man. What a great record!
KAELIN ELLIS – MOMENTS
Florida producer and multi-intrumentalist KAELIN ELLIS has released a stellar new beat tape titled MOMENTS. Known for his intricate and soulful compositions, he has crafted a project that sounds lively, with a plethora of different melodies and arrangements that are stunning throughout. The piano melodies on “SOUL POWER” for example are stunning, while the guitar leads and keys on “JOY” are uplifting. It’s a truly phenomenal project and I can’t wait to see how far this man can go musically. Go support!
Kahlil Blu – DOG
New York artist Kahlil Blu is one of my favourite producers these days, being an integral part of the growing, inspiring independent hip-hop scene in the US. His new project DOG is an expansive one, showcasing his musical range perfectly. From the soulful and lush production on “runway talk” featuring Mavi (who kills his verse), and “melwood” to the 808s heavy “119 july” and “tabi,” the project is eclectic and sonically varied. Kahlil Blu also raps throughout, being honest about his personal experiences and being transparent on record. It’s inspiring, and I hope he starts getting the recognition he deserves.
Knxwledge – VGM’s.PRT_1
Legendary producer Knxwledge has released another stellar beat tape titled VGM’s.PRT_1. His drums are exquisite, as per usual as his dynamic, arrangements and various styles throughout the 8-track project make it an exciting one to listen to. Personal favourites of mine include “gameovr_” and “beforeigo_,” which has more of a trap sound, which is something I rarely see him do, but he does it exceptionally well throughout. A great release!
Josey Rebelle – Josey In Space
One of UK’s true DJ trailblazers Josey Rebelle has curated an extensive mixtape/compilation album called Josey in Space. With music from the likes of AFRODEUTSCHE, Fotomachine, Automation, Loraine James, Shy One, Molinaro and Lex Amor among others of course, this project is an expansive one. With intricate electronic compositions and incredible House rhythms, this project showcases the talents of a plethora of talented musicians within the UK. Something definitely worth supporting!
Dua Saleh – ROSETTA
100% of their proceeds will be donated to Women for Political Change.
Sudanese-American recording artist, songwriter, poet, and actor Dua Saleh has released an excellent new EP titled ROSETTA. The textured, lavish synth and electronic production is met with gorgeous vocals that carry a lot of weight and poignant emotion. It’s a huge presence, and on tracks like “umbrellar” and the abrasive “hellbound” they bring an almost overpowering, unsettling tone with their vocals. It’s a mesmerising listen that deserves a whole lot of attention.
Speaker Music – Black Nationalist Sonic Weaponry
DeForrest Brown, Jr aka Speaker Music is a New York-based theorist, journalist, and curator. He produces digital audio and extended media as Speaker Music and is a representative of the Make Techno Black Again campaign. Black Nationalist Sonic Weaponry is his new project, a collage of different soundscapes ranging from Techno and House beats to jazzier moments, more melodic moments. It’s dense and can be heavy on the ears at times, but the sheer energy and magnitude of some of the compositions and arrangements make this a memorable listening experience. Go check this expansive project out because it is special!
HAUS OF ALTR – HOA010
Half of Proceeds will be donated to For The Gworls, Afrotectopia, & Afrorack. The second half will go directly to all artist involved.
More House and Dance music courtesy of New York-based label HAUS of ALTR in the form of a compilation album titled HOA010. You’ll be able to listen to incredible compositions from the likes of AceMo, AshTreJinkins, Galcher Lustwerk, Kush Jones, Lorraine James, Speaker Music and TAH among a plethora of others. It’s a dynamic and heavy compilation with a lot of incredible beats and rhythms throughout. Definitely worth supporting, considering as well where the money is going to.
Elusive – Dreamy
LA-based beatmaker Elusive has released a brand new EP titled Dreamy. Having been a fan of his for a while for his dreamy and angelic compositions, I was very excited to listen to it, and as usual it didn’t disappoint. The cosmic tones of “Digital Dreams” is amazing, with an eclectic composition that reminds me of classic Fly Lo. Throughout the project, he emphasises atmospheric, synth-heavy and angelic sounds to create an uplifting, feel-good mood. It’s a fantastic project and one to definitely check out!
SAULT – Hard Life (Untitled (Black Is))
SAULT – Bow ft Michael Kiwanuka (Untitled (Black Is))
SAULT – Miracles (Untitled (Black Is))
Khruangbin – Pelota (Single)
Noname – Song 33 (Single)
Ras G – Greentea Wit The Green Tea (Raw Fruit Vol. 5 & 6)
Black Noi$e – The Band ft Liv.e (Single)
Kahlil Blu – runaway talk ft Mavi (DOG)
KAELIN ELLIS – SOUL POWER (MOMENTS)
Elusive – Digital Dreams (Dreamy)
Dua Saleh – umbrellar (ROSETTA)
Pharma – bossypants ft Anais (Grand St.)
Fotomachine – BBoy (Josey In Space)
Speaker Music – Techno is a Liberation Technology w AceMo (Black Nationalist Sonic Weaponry)
Kush Jones – Black Man Studio (Strictly 4 My Cdjz 7)