Fair play to Funk Flex for this though, as the lineup is unbelievable and essentially a snapshot of mainstream hip-hop at this moment in time. Appearances include A$AP Rocky, Joey Bada$$, Kendrick Lamar, J. Cole, Childish Gambino, Fabolous, Action Bronson, Slaughterhouse, Young Jeezy and many, many more; for a full list, check out the back artwork over at Funk’s place. Many of the tracks from this tape have leaked out individually in the last 24 hours too, and thankfully they’re tagless versions, with one notable example being the Joey Bada$$ effort on the mixtape. If you’re after any of the other individual tracks, I’m sure a quick Google search can help you there, otherwise grab the bumper project for free below.
A little mainstream goodness for the R&B heads, and it’s one with good quality songwriting from Ne-Yo that’s pretty easy to appreciate.
Celebrating his lady of choice, he’s not shy with lauding her various accomplishments and plus points, even offering ‘a toast to the ladies with class‘. A refreshing slice of originality on the mainstream scene, and whilst songs with such lyricism can sometimes come off a bit preachy, he delivers it well enough here to keep it engaging, helped greatly by a lively and upbeat production that comes to life in the hook. Wiz’s contribution doesn’t exactly make or break the track, and is instead just the expected tacked-on rap verse for those extra few fans, but overall it’s a solid pop jam that’ll be a radio favourite. R.E.D. Album drops on 6th November.
Another one I’m not going to give much love in my spare time, but Ne-Yo’s definitely got one here with the first single from the R.E.D. album.
I’ve got no doubts that this will go on to absolutely dominate the clubs over the coming months, with a paint-by-numbers electro-pop production that’s upbeat, uptempo and a heavy hook focus, the contents of which are extremely catchy even by Ne-Yo’s consistent standards. The video’s high octane stuff, with plenty of rave scenes coupled with lots of choreography routines from the fleet-footed Ne-Yo. Honestly, there isn’t a great deal else I can say about this one as it’s identical to any other pop track by an ‘R&B artist’; let’s just hope the album has a couple of R&B-style jams for the rest of us.
Makes you appreciate the likes of Frank Ocean that little bit more eh?
Of the trillions of possible album titles, why Ne-Yo opted to use the same title as Game’s album released less than a year ago is beyond me. It helps no-one and it’s not even that good of a name. R.E.D. Yeah, creative.
The first release from that album, and thankfully it compensates for the silly titling. The production is anchored around a booming percussion, creating a driving power in the soundscape that is supplemented by some excellent lightness in the melodies. The soft keys, strums and synths surround themselves around the pounding percussion alternately, serving to calm it slightly and keep the track from straying too far from the realms of more laidback R&B. Vocally, Ne-Yo rarely disappoints and his delivery is on-point once again, ensuring he doesn’t get too wrapped up in the more intense elements by resisting the temptation to cut loose and deliver an overly-passionate segment. It’s nothing revolutionary, but a solid R&B jam for sure.
Brand new visuals for Ne-Yo’s latest, with a couple of his more esteemed R&B peers along for the ride.
The track is a solid slow jam in a simple, uncomplicated style that has been surprisingly absent in recent years, and the video also proves a pleasant surprise by taking a typical setting for an R&B track, a strip club, and adding an unexpected touch of class to proceedings by focusing a little less on the sleaze in favour of a more sultry, smooth theme. However, that’s not to say this video is quite fitting for younger eyes, as there are certainly some rather raunchy moments!
Much like the audio, the video employs a very simple and effective style and is worth a watch for the R&B heads. Nice to see three big names of the genre come together for this too, given that they’re pretty much fighting for same spot, and equally it’s good to see a few other music luminaries pop up for cameos. Grab an early version of this track here, and keep an eye on iTunes for the official release.
A longer episode this week, with plenty of R&B’s luminaries making appearances this week, including Frank Ocean, Ne-Yo and Trey Songz, alongside a track from the latest group emerging from the Odd Future collective.
Nothing to recap on from the week gone by, so go ahead and treat yourself by clicking below and gorging yourself on the treats within.
Undoubtedly, the highlight of this week’s R&B content has already been delivered, with the hugely-anticipated release of The Weeknd’s second project, Thursday. There’s also new music from upcoming UK singer Chrome, dropping off an energetic single for his latest video.
Very diverse episode this week, with some mainstream pop, old-school style soul and the usual R&B fare all made available for your listening pleasure, and plenty of big names providing that content. Click below to fill yourself with R&B nourishment.
Very exciting episode this week, with some of my favourite artists making appearances, as well as a couple of fresh new names. Pretty much strong material all the way through, making this one of the more essential episodes of recent weeks.
From Fabolous’ upcoming mixtape The Soul Tape, Loso lets loose of the lead single. You Be Killin’ Em was quite the smash for Fab, and despite being ‘part 2′, this has a markedly different style and vibe to its predecessor. The beat is far less bouncy, but has a thicker, more punchy hip-hop style that probably makes it more versatile in so far as being able to enjoy it outside of a club environment.
Ne-Yo comes through with a very empassioned delivery on the hook, though that emotion bleeds into the structure a little bit and makes the hook a little difficult to actually distinguish at times. Solid work from Loso as usual, and a decent if unspectacular contribution from R-Les. Not as good as the original for me, but maybe one that’ll be easier to listen to at home/on the headphones.
There’s one simple reason this is late: I forgot. I subsequently considered leaving it for this week, but then realised how many of your lives cling on to the faint glimmer of light and tiny shreds of hope that R&B Friday gives you.
Genuine reason on the delay this week: I wasn’t happy with the amount of good quality material as of yesterday afternoon, but the R&B/pop world has delivered in the last 24 hours or so to make sure that situation has improved.
Again, I’m aware it’s a Sunday…it is (or was) Christmas though, so finding a few hours to throw this together wasn’t really going to happen. I’m surprised there is enough material, given that the industry usually shuts down a little around this time of year, but it seems most artists are intent on continuing success they’ve found this year.
In contrast to last week’s bumper episode, this week is a little shorter. However, that’s not to suggest it’s been a quiet week for R&B, as we’ve seen the release of plenty of videos/singles, and no less than 4 full-length mixtapes from R&B Fridays favourites.
Whilst the rest of the music world seems to have taken a much-needed breather this week (album releases aside), there’s been no shortage of new and/or unreleased R&B and pop material in the 76th instalment of R&B Fridays.
A more digestable episode this week, which makes a nice change for us all having had a few extended instalments in recent weeks.
Outside of this episode, it’s been a fairly quiet week for R&B, with just the three notables: a video for Rihanna and Drake’s collaboration, new music from UK upcomer Talay Riley, and the latest drop from Trey Songz’s upcoming mixtape.
Click below for the 75th instalment of R&B’s favourite weekly episodical.
Really good cover (not that I/we expected any less) from Ne-Yo, taking on the MJ classic and doing it justice. There really isn’t a great deal more to say here as we’re all familiar with the original, and all familiar with Ne-Yo’s vocal gifts!
Over the last 70 episodes, we’ve delivered music from your favourite acts, introduced you to some new and exiciting ones, and of course given a new lease of life to otherwise forgotten artists. To celebrate that, I’ve ensured this week’s episode covers all of that ground nicely, to keep everyone satisfied.
Not much to recap on this week, besides two big video premieres from Rihanna and Lloyd. Click on to grab a chunky, 20+ track episode that’ll keep you going for a while.
New singles from Keri and Rihanna headline this episode, along with plenty of other tracks from a range of talented artists. Before that, the customary recap: a great track from UK newcomer Talay Riley, Drake’s lead track from his upcoming mixtape, plenty of R&B-related artwork, and finally the official video for Keri Hilson’s Breaking Point.
I’m sure you can forgive me for this being a couple of days late: having no laptop sort of makes things a little difficult! Hence, I’ll not keep you too long out here in the cold and away from the R&B.
Whilst I’m told the pre-episode recaps are going down well, in the interests of time you can take care of it yourself for this week by clicking the R&B category at the top of this page, which should fill you in appropriately. Click on for this week’s episode. → Continue Reading
Lots of things I could pick out in this week’s episode, but probably the most prominent would be the features: there are lots of them! A couple of unexpected ones too, including Asher Roth’s first appearance in R&B Fridays.