Wale-Bad Remix ft. Rihanna

wale rihanna
Wale’s third album, The Gifted, lands on 25th June and many will agree that there isn’t really any buzz for it. Most of the coverage has been for the unique artwork, and even the majority of that has been relatively mocking- whilst I think it’s fairly likeable, it doesn’t detract from the fact that musically, he’s not exactly stealing attention away from the other big releases coming in June.

What better way to turn heads than by grabbing a rare Rihanna feature? Seemingly old friends, Wale calls on her to rework a track that originally featured Tiara Thomas, and of course help push it into the mainstream consciousness. The original skipped by me slightly, but it’s clearly a track with a ton of potential; a catchy, chart-friendly hook, an easygoing production that’s suited perfectly to Rihanna’s cadence, and Wale pretty much fills the gaps with relatively uncomplicated raps. Funny thing to say, but I suspect many will find Rih’s adlibs a highlight here, oozing sex appeal throughout and adding a fun, unpredictable layer to the track. Hardly a return to form for Wale, but it’s a mainstream smash in the making that should get his hype up and move some numbers on the 25th.

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Mike WiLL Made It-Est. In 1989 2.5 (Mixtape)

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.

Mike WiLL Made It-Est. In 1989 2.5

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Rihanna-Diamonds Remix ft. Eve

One of my favourite mainstream songs in recent times gets taken on by Eve, who continues her recent freestyle series with a set of bars over the Rihanna single.

Not quite as memorable as her work on Quiet Storm a short while back, but again it’s just nice having Eve back around hip-hop and her verse is still worth a go. Unlike many who throw out remixes, she sticks with the general theme of the track well enough, and drops off a verse that’s easy enough to make this a viable remix in mainstream circles. Shame we didn’t get more than one verse, but this recent spurt of releases hopefully means some longer original material is on the way.

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Rihanna-Diamonds Remix ft. Kanye West

Surprisingly, I quite like the original version of this, and it’s certainly one of her better singles in recent times. Add Kanye to the mix and this looks to be hanging around my playlists for a little while longer.

Unlike most guest features, Kanye doesn’t just lazily lay down a couple of bars and walk away, but actually hangs around with a fairly lengthy verse that runs for the entire first third of the song. It’s good to have a more meaty remix in that sense, and he adds a good amount to the track with his frustrated delivery that packs in plenty of bragger raps, along with a couple of nice intensity switch-ups in line with the production. And, he references Tay Zonday, which is just lovely.

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Rihanna-Cockiness Remix ft. A$AP Rocky

Huge co-sign for Rocky, as Rihanna nabs him for the official remix to what I assume is to be her next single from her latest album.

It’s clear why Rocky’s picked for this one, with the slowed down production being a great fit for his slurry style and allowing enough room for his confidence to pierce through and dominate the verse. As ever, it’s no lyrical masterpiece from him, but is full of the easygoing style that continues to endear him to mainstream audiences. It’s a very hip-hop inspired production from beatsmith Bangladesh, utilising his repetitive vocal sample style throughout the track (probably because he literally cannot make any other type of beat), which also forces Rihanna to adopt a rap-esque approach for her verse.

Can’t say I care a great deal for it overall though, as the production becomes annoying very quickly, and there’s little else going on of note. Nonetheless, this will have its fans and it’s a great shine for Rocky.

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Coldplay-Princess of China ft. Rihanna Video

For the most part, I was quite disappointed with Mylo Xyloto, but this was undoubtedly one of its highlights and was always destined to be a big single from the album.

The video has a nice consistent theme running through it, injecting a heavy Chinese/Asian influence into a set of very diverse scenes, and where the audio doesn’t necessarily stick to the title in terms of using those influences, the video fills the gaps. The clip almost plays out like a martial arts film, with Chris Martin and Rihanna living very different lives, Rihanna’s of opulence and Chris’ of fighting/discipline, before the video alternates between a loving bond and a combative rivarly with one another. Clearly, that parallels the lyrics and hence the visuals are a good compliment for the audio, whilst also embellishing it with some nice imagery throughout. The only criticisms I’d have are that at times it feels a little parody-esque, and also that it just lacks a sense of grand scale that a song like this deserves. A decent watch nonetheless, and you can grab the album on iTunes now.

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Drake - Take Care ft. Rihanna [Video]

The second, and probably more anticipated, video release from Drake sees him deliver visuals for his huge collaboration with Rihanna. Seen by many as the headline track from the album of the same name, this is a mainstream smash hit.

Personally this song got played out very quickly, but I’m sure there’s lots out there who still enjoy it and will lap up the video, so enjoy!

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R&B Fridays: Episode 139

A very slow week for R&B/pop music this week (those new Chris Brown/Rihanna collaborations don’t count as music), and as a result it’s a pretty short, and stream-heavy, episode this week.

I’ve made this statement before, but R&B really is in a bad spot at the minute, with a serious lack of both quantity and quality as many of its stars are either inactive or pursuing pop careers. It’s a sad state of affairs, but I retain hope that the likes of The-Dream will be back soon to restore the natural order.

Click below for this week’s relatively diverse edition.
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Album Review: Drake - Take Care

Following on from Ajay’s game-changing live tweet review of the excellent Childish Gambino album, Camp, I’ve followed up with live album review of my own, for an album that leaked on the same day of the previously mentioned album.

Take Care is Drake’s attempt at beating the ‘sophomore curse’, and he takes it into a very different direction to his explosive début. The build up to this album has been slightly lacklustre, has Drake managed to pull a rabbit out the hat? Those following the official OTU Twitter account already know my thoughts, the rest of y’all click on below.

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Drake-Take Care Trailer

One of the most pointless trailers I’ve ever seen, and it’s not Drake’s fault.

Essentially a dressed-up list of Drake achievements, I’m completely at a loss to see why I’m supposed to buy his new album based on what he won and sold for his first album. In a 2:13 video, I counted 13 seconds of his new material in this video and a quick flash of the artwork, whereas Rihanna and Nicki Minaj seem to take up a much longer portion of the trailer, and the video ends with the realisation that actually, it’s been mostly about the numerous hits he was involved in from 09/10. The effects and styles used are incredibly low-budget too, and you can’t help but feel this video just oozes ‘He’ll sell and we know it, why waste money on promoting him properly?’.

Credit to whoever put the audio together as they’ve done a very good job on mixing some of his more popular tracks together,  but it alone can’t save one of the laziest marketing strategies (all-round, not just this video) you’ll ever see for someone of Drake’s standing and popularity. You have to feel for the lower rung of artists when even the most popular guys are suffering with the creative vacuums putting this stuff together.

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R&B Fridays: Episode 107

Pretty much a two-artist episode this week, with 50% of the episode made up of new Chris Brown material, and the other half being remixes of/involving The Weeknd. Two different ends of the R&B spectrum for sure, and hopefully that should keep you all rather satisfied.

Recap from the week’s posts: one of soul’s shining lights, Jesse Boykins III, dropped off a new EP, Drake released an official video for his much-loved (and remixed) Marvin’s Room, and finally Patrick Stump grabbed Lupe Fiasco for his next single from his debut album.

Click below for this week’s arts and crafts.
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R&B Fridays: The Top 30 Tracks From Episodes 1-100

After delivering well over 1000 songs in the first 100 episodes, in honour of the 100th episode I’ll finally acquiesce to the oft-repeated demand for a recap by you R&B Friday fans. We’ve seen artists have great periods of consistency, others drop off a phenomenal effort and fade away, and everything in between: here we’ll seperate the great from the truly elite, and controversially select the definitive top 30 tracks to have graced the (often) selective walls of R&B Fridays.

The rules: Tracks MUST have been part of an episode, meaning tracks in the pre-post recap and in seperate posts do not count (unless a version of them was originally posted in an episode). This may explain tracks that you’re outraged about being omitted, so remember this. Every track included in the episodes is up for consideration, except for throwbacks. Finally, this list IS in ranking order, starting with #30 and down to the #1 track of R&B Fridays. Having changed my mind many times over the last week on the entire 30, I’ve forced myself to pick the final list and despite disagreeing with it myself every time I look at it, I’m putting it out there (at some point, every song has probably been at #1!). Click on to disagree and get angry.

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The Lonely Island ft. Rihanna-Shy Ronnie 2: Ronnie & Clyde

After releasing the video for Jack Sparrow only a week or so back The Lonely Island hit us pretty sharpish with even more hilarious visuals.

I have to say I think this is probably my favourite video the guys have made, not just because it involves the ever glorious Rihanna, well maybe a little bit. In this TLI and Ri are seen to be playing their own version of hip-hops most loved criminal couple Bonnie & Clyde.

Rihanna actually plays her role extremely well, showing us a comedic side to her that we’re not really used to seeing, something TLI seem to have mastered with all the stars they’ve worked with. There’s not much else I can add to this other than if this doesn’t make you laugh, or at the very least raise a smile, you have no soul. Enjoy.

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Kanye West ft. Rihanna, Kid Cudi-All Of The Lights [Video]

Quite easily my favourite track on Ye’s My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, the video has been anticipated for weeks and finally, the Hype Williams directed video has arrived for Yeezy’s amazing All Of The Lights.

Amidst a flurry of epilepsy-inducing flashing fonts, we’re taken on the story of a lonely girl wandering around the ghetto alone through the night. Whilst this happens, the father abuses her mother and gets imprisoned as a result, only to find someone else in his bed upon his return, for which he exacts revenge. Quite a worrying, yet harshly true picture of modern life for some people.

It’s done fantastically well and manages to capture both sides of the track: the story above (told in the verses), and also the euphoric, triumphant feel the instrumentals and hook combine to emanate, highlighting the schizophrenic nature of the track. It’s just a shame it sounds like it ends too sharply after cutting Fergie’s verse out.

Also, Rihanna looks stunning. Just wow.

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Eminem, Rihanna, Adam Levine, Dr. Dre & Skylar Grey-Grammy Awards [Video]

Another Grammy night performance for you now. This time we have Rihanna singing Love The Way You Lie Part II (the audio for this track can be found here), with Adam Levine on the piano (not sure why, but I’m not complaining!).

Eminem then comes out to thunderous applause, and lets rip on his final verse to the Love The Way You Lie saga. This is followed by the fantastic Skylar Grey (who coincidentally was the original singer of the aforementioned song) as she opens I Need A Doctor with stunning vocals, outshining Rihanna in my opinion. Em keeps his end of the deal, giving a typically passionate performance on this one, with all of this leading up to the appearance of one Dr. Dre…

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Mick Boogie and Terry Urban-Award Tour

A fun, remixed uptempo happy good time consisting of the best remixes and rarites of this years Grammy nominees. Featuring remixed music by everyone from Lady Gaga, La Roux and Rihanna to Kanye West, Vampire Weekend and Florence & The Machine, there’s something for everybody for sure.

Looks very interesting to say the least, and the duo of Boogie and Urban never fail to deliver when it comes to these original projects. There are some serious names on this one, and the tracklist will defnitely whet your appetite. Click below for the download, and even further below for the tracklist.

Mick Boogie and Terry Urban-Award Tour
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R&B Fridays: Episode 84

No recap this week thanks to a temperamental hard drive, but R&B Fridays actually makes it out on a Friday for the second consecutive week, which is a pretty big victory.

Lots of remixes and rappers popping up this week, with some huge names coming through with some very unexpected pop and R&B remixes. More than enough original material too though, making this a very diverse episode that’ll satisfy the vast majority of you grubby little folk.

Click on and let me be the Snoop to your Cameron, though R&B/pop probably isn’t the same as marijuana…probably.
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R&B Fridays: Episode 82

Once again, it’s not quite a Friday. However, with the busy Christmas/New Year period over, hopefully these will be back on regular schedule from next week!

The past week has seen some pretty interesting R&B/pop pieces: Duck Sauce came through with a great remix of Chromeo and Elly Jackson’s single, the well-respected Jackie Boyz dropped off a mixtape, Marsha Ambrosius delivered an incredibly thoughtful video, Eminem remixed Dirty Money’s Hello, Good Morning, and we were also treated to two more Dirty Money remixes. Click below for this week’s instalment.
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Ellie Goulding Covers Rihanna’s Only Girl

Talk about stamping your authority on a song. The talented Ellie Goulding recorded this on Friday morning for BBC’s Live Lounge, and ignored the techno vibe of the original, opting for an organic, easier-on-the-ear version of her own.

Not only are we treated to her unique vocals, but she’s backed by a string section that improve this track immeasurably, giving it a richer sound. It’s not difficult to improve on Rihanna’s vocals, but Ellie undoubtedly goes a step further with this superb cover.

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Pill Remixes Rihanna’s What’s My Name

Pill’s been a little quiet recently, but returns to prominence with a nice contribution to Rihanna and Drake’s huge single. As he did with his Rude Boy remix, Pill takes on a popular production with ease and sounds completely at home on the beat: a great sign for an upcoming rapper.

Personally, I’ve grown bored of the original (there are only so many times I can hear ‘oh na na’) so this undoubtedly makes for a welcome refresh of the track, and will certainly do the same for those of you also tiring with the original.

Rihanna-What’s My Name Remix ft. Pill

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Rihanna ft. Drake-What's My Name? [Video]

Official video to what I told you would be a huge track (just went #1 in America I believe!).

Some nice visuals that both Rihanna and Drake fans will appreciate. The only comment I have to add is that Rihanna needs to sort her hair out.

Audio can be swacked from here.

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Rihanna and Nicki Minaj-Raining Men

The much-anticipated collaboration from two of music’s biggest female stars lands, just a week before the album is set to be released.

For me, it’s pretty underwhelming. I expected something with a little more energy and a more defined style, but instead we’re given a track that’s all over the place from a genre perspective: the combination of pop vocals and lyrics with a hip-hop influenced production doesn’t work at all, and instead manifests itself as a disorienting ‘pop rap’ song. Considering this is supposed to be targeted to the mainstream, there really isn’t anything memorable from the verses either, whilst the hook largely consists of Rihanna making unidentified noises. The solitary highlight is the production itself, which I’d like to hear some rappers  take on.

Rihanna-Raining Men ft. Nicki Minaj

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Rihanna-Love The Way You Lie Part II ft. Eminem

When I first heard they were making a part II for Rihanna’s upcoming album (Loud, which is out Nov 16th), I immediately thought it was a terrible, terrible idea. Upon listening to this I’m pretty surprised at how good this is. Obviously this isn’t as good, and certainly won’t have the same impact, as the original, especially as they’ve recycled the same chorus, and parts of the original beat. However this is much more a Rihanna song, with her singing some real heartfelt verses before Eminem closes the track off with a verse that sounds very sombre, but then typically develops onto a much angrier note.

Rihanna – Love The Way You Lie Part II ft. Eminem

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Rihanna & Drake-What’s My Name [BTS]

Behind the scenes look at Rihanna & Drake’s upcoming video from what promises to be an absolute smash hit.

Not going to lie, this video is pretty boring, but I’m definitely looking forward for the actual video to drop.

Audio can be guzzled from here, if you somehow missed out on it before.

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R&B Fridays: Episode 71

Stacked episode this week, with some huge mainstream singles alongside great material from underappreciated artists. Quality wise, it’s one of the strongest R&B Fridays of recent months for sure: one of those where you could easily grab everything on offer.

The recap: Mastered version of Lloyd’s latest, Willow Smith’s debut video, Ne-Yo covering an MJ classic, Rihanna’s newest video, and finally the anticipated video for Chris Brown’s new single.

Click on for the longest running weekly episodic in the history of the universe.
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Rihanna-Who’s That Chick Video

Rihanna’s happy, colourful comeback continues with a track that might not actually be on her album. Supposedly, this was only made for a Doritos ad and I’m sure it was said that it’s not going to feature on Loud.

There was an unfinished version of this floating around recently, which only had the colourful half of the video. This would be the final version, which contrasts day and night nicely, and also acts as a device to show off both Rihanna’s previous darker style and her current brighter one.

Audio is here.

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Rihanna-What's My Name ft. Drake

Massive, massive track here by two artists who could lay claim to being some of the biggest acts on the planet right now. So a collaboration between the two of them is going grab yours and everyone’s attention!

Does this track, which is off Rihanna’s upcoming Loud album, disappoint? You’d think it would, but whilst it isn’t a song that’s going to change the world, it’s one you’ll certainly find yourself enjoying a lot – perhaps as a guilty pleasure, (which is certainly the case for me!). Expect this to absolutely dominate airwaves, radiowaves and brainwaves everywhere.

Just remember where you heard it first. Download below.

Rihanna-What’s My Name ft. Drake

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Rihanna-Only Girl In The World Video

Surprising that this took so long to be released, given that the album is due on November 2nd.

Nice to see Rihanna back on her positive vibe, coming through with a bright, colourful video that makes the dance-infused audio well. I’ve said for years her best feature is her smile, and I expect a lot of subscribers to that thought after this video.

Audio can be taken from here. The video may go up and down for a while, as it’s only ‘officially’ available in the US at the moment. We’ll keep updating with working links.

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R&B Fridays: Episode 69

Hopefully, this reaches you on time this week!

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.

Click on to get involved in this week’s episode.

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