Sh*t You Forgot About: Episode 3


After a forced hiatus due to various other commitments, we can finally resume the latest weekly series from the OTU brain trust. I must admit, this is fast becoming my personal favourite series in OTU history, purely because it allows both yourselves and I to rediscover tracks that we either once loved or once forgot about, and that’s frankly a lot of fun.

Enough of the self-appreciation.

Click on below for another diversity-laden edition of SYFA, featuring a trio of prominent current mainstream names, alongside a couple of acts that have slipped away somewhat.


Empire of the Sun-Walking on a Dream (August 2008)

-Dreamy yet energetic, futuristic yet retro, and insanely listenable. Taken from their 2008 debut album of the same name, the track boasts a delicious astral quality, courtesy of the drifty vocals that are often difficult to decipher, and in this case its not really a problem, as instead they work almost as an instrument of their own in the wider tapestry of the production. The sharp, rolling percussion gives the track a bounce, whilst the various samples and effects used on the track create a soundscape with a huge variety of influences, and this is one that is simply a uniquely excellent piece of alternative music.

Wiz Khalifa-The Thrill (October 2009)

-This was my introduction to the above track, and also the first song that made me really take notice of Wiz. He utilises the Walking on a Dream production superbly, weaving it into his stoner style to play off its more calming qualities, whilst his adlibs and natural charisma combine with the more energetic segments for a nice upbeat feel. Chalk this one up as one of the best samples of an alternative track the hip-hop genre has seen in recent years.

The-Dream-February Love (June 2010)

-Probably the standout track from his thoroughly-excellent Love King album, this is one I’d originally saved to headline a Winter EP volume, though April’s probably a tad too late for one of those, so here we are. One of the biggest compliments you can pay to a track is when it simply flies by, and you’re not quite sure where those few minutes went, and given that this is over 6 minutes, that’s a huge deal with this one. The production is antastically atmospheric, combining thoughtful piano melodies with a range of lengthy synths, whilst also retaining a progression via the percussion work that gives the track both a nice structure and a good payoff. Dream is on top form throughout, taking his soft, high style and really connecting the instrumental via diverse deliveries, solid lyricism and a general command over his melodies, and the combination with the production ensures this is truly one of the premier winter tracks.

Lupe Fiasco-Kick, Push (Face to Face Mix) (July 2007)

-Taken from the Like Liquor for Punks mixtape, a mash-up mixtape featuring the raps of Lupe Fiasco and Common over Daft Punk beats, this emerged to little fanfare back then (over here at least) and hence was quite easily missed by many. This stands out as the best remix from the project, with Lupe’s breakout hit Kick, Push blending smoothly with the sharp electronic stylings of Daft Punk’s Face to Face, with the stop-start nature of the production fitting almost frighteningly well with Lupe’s slick flows throughout. With most mash-ups there are small sections that sound a little off, but this remains almost entirely flawless, and you’ll find yourself engrossed in this for sure as a result.

Fort Minor-Where’d You Go ft. Holly Brook (November 2005)

-As many of you will know, Brook is the previous guise (and real name) of the now-ubiquitous Skylar Grey, and this was her first big break as part of the underrated Mike Shinoda’s hugely slept-on Fort Minor project. Soft piano melodies create a sombre, introspective backdrop throughout, whilst Mike’s raps and Holly/Skylar’s vocals are equally reflective, with Mike’s raps in particular having a very personal vibe that makes for hugely engaging listening. With an exceptional hook, strong verses and a hypnotising production, you’ve got a very emotional and thoughtful track that ticks all of the right boxes.

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