Since the release of this track, it’s been a permanent fixture in pretty much every playlist I use, and unquestionably it’s one that demonstrates why Kanye West saw fit to bring him on as a G.O.O.D. Music member (and also justifies his pick on my 13 for ’13).
As an extremely versatile track in terms of ideal listening environment, the direction of the video was rather flexible, and Ryan’s managed to pick a good direction for it. The production lends itself to a summery environment, and that’s provided throughout this clip, with plenty of ocean views, sandy beaches and a general brightness that captures the warmth of the track, whilst the emotional vocals and lyrics are visualised in the young child’s search and journey through several terrains. What’s notable is there’s a slight tempering of the video throughout, via both the hazy filter and relative lack of activity (in terms of ‘summer enjoyment’), and that culminates in the somewhat ambiguous and bittersweet ending. It’s a nice representation of the audio in terms of scenery, whilst the actions within add a different layer of depth to the vocal and lyrical work. A good watch, and hopefully a breakout single for Ryan.
Feast on it. the musings of my mind as the sky fallls over the heads of ballet dancers. the life opera #NoSe
With every release, Ryan’s displaying precisely why he’s a G.O.O.D. Music representative, and why he’s a vocalist with a ton of hype and potential around him right now. Though this is only a short track, designed to be an interlude on his upcoming mixtape, there’s more than enough here to satisfy his current fans and get him a few new ones. The leftfield Pepe Aguilar sample sets this off excellently, with the classical instrumentation and gentle vocal sample providing a vintage and soulful backdrop, upon which Ryan offers emotional vocals containing observational, commentatorial lyricism. That combination results in a heartfelt and meaningful performance that will surely whet the appetite ahead of that mixtape’s release, and if you’re not already familiar, get familiar.
He was one of the more surprise inclusions (supposedly) on my 13 for ’13 list, mostly because he’s not released a great deal of material, but he’s come through with his second single that’s already getting plenty of buzz.
The production blends a reflective, wistful vibe with an infusion of lively, traditional elements for a beat with plenty of depth. The combination of hypnotic tribal vocal samples, atmospheric synths and a collection of sharp instruments (including what sounds like a xylophone) makes for engaging listening, and it’s almost puzzle-esque as you’ll catch a new sound with each play. His vocals talents are what originally brought him to my attention, and they’re flexed superbly here, with verses that progress smoothly in terms of intensity and emotion, building smartly to a rousing, empassioned hook that anchors the song nicely. It’s a track that moves really smoothly throughout, and throw the solid Hit-Boy verse into the mix and it’s a very good all-rounder that should be a breakout single for the G.O.O.D. Music vocalist.
Year after year, we change the format of the end-of-year OTU round-up (routine is boring), and this year I’ve opted for a forward-looking feature rather than reflecting on what was a rather disappointing year in the music world. Many are desperate to have their tastes for 2013 dictated to them by either the BBC Sound of 2013 or MTV’s Brand New for 2013, but the interesting thing is we’ve been championing some of the acts they’ve thrust upon you this past week for quite some time. The rest of them we probably don’t care about.
So, here’s a chance to get clued up with some genuine upcoming talents that I expect to release more fantastic material this year and break through that next barrier of success, whether it’s into mainstream consciousness or slightly wider underground appreciation. Note that I didn’t say commercial success. Whilst some will certainly find that and it is a facet of their potential growth this year, it’s far from essential, and each selection here deserves to be so on quality and potential more than anything. Regular reader or not, you’ll have heard of several of these selections before and be assured those acts are here on merit, not because a label asked us to do so; something the aforementioned 2013 ‘predictions’ from the mainstream outlets can’t honestly claim. Let’s go. → Continue Reading
Sourmilk and Justin Credible (props to those who associate that name with the old wrestler) have built up quite the name for themselves over the last couple of years as the LA Leakers, and their status as pre-eminent West Coast DJs is verified with this collection of unreleased tracks and remixes from some huge names.
Ryan Leslie, Wale, Pac Div, A$AP Rocky and Problem are amongst the established names contributing, whilst Ryan McDermott, Audio Push and Trinidad James are part of the very talented and/or popular upcomers featured here. For the mainstream and middle-ground hip-hop heads, there’s no reason you wouldn’t be grabbing this and I’ll delay you no further-head below for the free stream and grab.