His Playboy Diaires mixtape was the last audio we got from him, and whilst an 8-month hiatus isn’t a lot for most artists, it is for one as prolific (with both features and his own solo work) as Lloyd tends to be. Nonetheless, he’s back and it’s good news for R&B heads.
I’m not sold on the whole ‘twerk, ratchet, molly’ thing (I don’t think anyone is, really), but it’s quite easy to brush aside here as Lloyd’s back to his smooth best vocally. The Drumma Boy production has a strong hip-hop influence, combining speaker-rattling percussion with urgent synth lines that wouldn’t sound out of place on an MMG mixtape, though there’s a slightly more mellow synth creeping in there that keeps the beat tied to Lloyd’s strong points. His hybrid delivery on the verses capitalises on the elevated bass levels in those sections well with a relatively rap-esque delivery riding along the beat well enough, whilst his mellow work on the hook is catchy and pretty much classic Lloyd- unquestionably, the differential between this track and other ‘twerk’-oriented R&B is that hook section, with Lloyd once again showing the durability of his inimitable style.
The video is pretty much women grinding and dancing around in a dark environment, which ends up playing on the moody synth work. Fingers crossed, there’s more coming from Lloyd; whilst some new upcoming talent has given R&B a mini resurgence, there’s room for Lloyd to command a leading position in the mainstream scene.
On the audio’s release, it was apparent that it was mostly a Weeknd track with a little Juicy J thrown in. Juicy’s only contribution is a verse around halfway through the track, and a couple of adlibs, with the rest of audio completely built around The Weeknd’s soft vocals and the dark, moody production; a good thing, believe me.
The video represents that odd dynamic quite clearly too. It’s almost entirely focused around The Weeknd looking rather depressed and moody; whilst his emotionless expression certainly fits the sombre vibe of the track, it moves away from ‘cool disassociation’ to ‘grumpy teenager’ before too long, and hence it becomes a little cringeworthy. With that said, his brief moment of animated activity is a rather unnerving and surprising turn, offering a wide smile when faced with a loaded gun, which again enhances the rather depressive vibe of the video. Juicy’s visual contributions are drinking and hitting on a barmaid, before shooting a man (the robber) in the back of the head; clearly breaking the stereotypes of hip-hop with that one. Nonetheless, a fitting clip to a solid audio.
Having thought this had been released some time ago, I was surprised to see it loitering in my inbox this morning. Pleasure to have it though, and despite my general avoidance of Juicy J’s material, this is pretty much a Weeknd track with a bit of Juicy J thrown in (much like his recent Rich Hil feature).
The production’s packed in a massive amount of layers, containing dark synths, percussion that moves between piercing and atmospheric, distant vocal samples, and what almost sounds like a distorted accordion somewhere in there: it’s a fusion between their two worlds, as it combines The Weeknd’s aura-filled style with the punch and verve of Juicy’s energy. The former has exclusivity over almost the entire first half, crooning out a smooth intro that segues nicely into his confident verse that switches between blunt near-raps and soft vocals, before moving down into the drifty hook. It’s a diverse and enjoyable performance, setting Juicy up for a passable extended verse, and finally switching back to the vocals that most listeners will want. Undoubtedly, The Weeknd dominates this, and hence it’s a strong effort.
Along with Hit-Boy, this guy’s been one of the legitimate breakout stars in the production world over the last 18 months, and here he collates some of his more well-known beats alongside some brand new original material for a massive 25-track free release.
The track’s he’s produced for others include names such as Rihanna, Future, Kelly Rowland and B.o.B, whilst his original additions to the tape benefit from some rather popular guests, including Young Jeezy, Chief Keef, Jim Jones and many more. Whether you’re a fan of his beat style or not, I’m sure there’ll be a few heavy-hitting party joints on this one to add to those new year playlists. Stream and download below at your leisure.
After celebrating five years of groundbreaking music and events, Brooklyn indie powerhouse Fool’s Gold Records puts a giant exclamation point on 2012 with the release of their highly anticipated rap compilation Loosies on December 18th.
Fool’s Gold are one of those labels that a surprising number of well-known acts have had some form of interaction with. From A-Trak being Kanye West’s former tour DJ and Kid Cudi breaking out on the label, to their current roster that boasts Danny Brown, Donnis and many more, they’re one of those labels that don’t force their brand on you, and instead let their acts do their work-an admirable quality.
This LP boasts 23 tracks from their artists and various guests, the latter including Juicy J, Jim Jones and Chuck Inglish, and certainly has some quality about it: an example includes Danny Brown’s thunderous Molly Ringwald, which got plenty of attention back in July. Stream the full thing here, and use the iTunes links in the player to grab the full project for yourself.
One of the most anticipated releases in recent weeks, Big Sean drops off his first project since his mainstream breakout debut LP, Finally Famous.
We’ve caught three tracks from this so far, each with their own very different charms, displaying that Sean’s newly-gained popularity hasn’t affected his versatility or desire for hip-hop. The tracklist honestly reads like an album, with huge features in the shape of Kendrick Lamar, close friend Mike Posner, Chris Brown and fellow Detroit native Royce Da 5’9″ amongst several others, whilst Snoop Lion (Dogg), Common and Young Jeezy feature on their own interlude sections, each titled Story. That sort of detail is always appreciated on an album, let alone a mixtape, and I’m sure it’ll all contribute to what’s set up to be an excellent all-round project. Free grab available below.
A simple video for the official remix to Wiz’s monster track. Good to see the effort going in here though, with each act contributing well to the video, and increase the energy of the track. In particular, Snoop seems to be having a great time and his chemistry with Wiz really shows here.
What’s with T-Pain’s eyewear? He looks like a failed James Bond villain, but with an Autotune impediment. Audio can be swiped from here.
Seemingly the official remix, this one throws in the T-Pain verse from a previous remix and adds in verses from Snoop, Juicy J (I think he’s in Three 6 Mafia?) and a brand new Wiz verse for good measure.
I was a big fan of T-Pain’s remix, and I’m glad to see they left his adlibs in as they do really up the energy of the track, whilst his verse certainly fits in well. Snoop’s verse is short but likeable, with some diversity in his delivery making the most of this uptempo hip-hop style. I’m enjoying Wiz’s new verse too, with some thinly-veiled references to his recent arrests and a general continuation of his head-nodding, confident rhymes from the original. Definitely worth checking out if you enjoyed the original.