Will.I.Am jumps behind the boards to give the original a revamp.
Accompanied with the black and white visuals, the remix gives us a totally different feel, somewhat more classical and throwback. I feel this version suits the verses better, Nas’ obviously a particular highlight. This is the kind of thing I’d like to hear on whatever his new album is called. But alas, I expect trademark Nas with his terrible beat selection whilst trying to ‘push the envelope’.
K’NAAN’s More Beautiful Than Silence EP can be picked up over at iTunes.
I’ve not been shy in criticising the Black Eyed Peas and will.i.am’s work in recent years, but credit has to be given to his superb R&B album from back in 2007. It was certainly one of my favourite R&B albums of that year (and still stands up favourably against today’s offerings), and whilst this track was certainly one of my favourites, I never actually realised a video was released until stumbling across it in director Nabil Elderkin’s back catalogue.
The track boasts a powerful atmosphere with moody synths and simple yet sharp percussion that backs those synths nicely, creating an airy production with a wistful quality. Will’s vocals were never going to win any awards, but they’re catchy in their simplicity, and his melodies are very much on point, particularly in the soft hook.
The video is suitably unfussy, taking place on a dark, dimly light beach that really adds to the thoughtful, isolated tone of the track, whilst the monochrome filter further enhances that feel. The flashes of light are a decent, if slightly overused, touch, and add a little diversity to the visual, making for a decent all-round video that supplements the audio nicely. R&B fans need to check out that album for a few more gems of this ilk.
Plenty of new material this week, in what has been a very active week for the R&B and pop scene. Well, that’s probably a half-truth as there’s only really the one post to recap on from this week’s posts, with the official visuals for Nikki & Rich’s breakout single with Fabolous surfacing.
Very interesting lineup in this week’s episode, with man-of-the-moment Frank Ocean lining up alongside such current luminaries as Chris Brown, Trey Songz and many more. No throwback this week as there has been quite a chunk of new material to get through, but there’s lots of good stuff to get into regardless. Click below to collect your winnings.
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 96
Now whatever your thoughts are on B.E.P this is an absolute must watch. As you’d expect from the half time Super Bowl Show it’s a visual masterpiece. Truly epic.
Vocally they are poor, which goes to show how much they rely on production. At least they remembered their lyrics though, unlike Christina Aguilera who managed to forget a few words to the American National Anthem. Nightmare. Also note a couple of random guest appearances from Slash (I’m still trying to figure out why…) and Usher.
Will R&B Fridays ever be on time? That’s the question.
I’ve more than compensated though, throwing in almost 20 tracks for you to enjoy this week. There’s no skimping on the big names either, as there are some strong contributions from some of the bigger stars in the R&B/pop world. No real recap this week as the music industry has all but shut down, though the Alicia Keys version of Devil In A New Dress is a must-download.
Click on for the first R&B Friday of 2011.
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 81
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.
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 75
Didn’t really take (waste) my time watching this video if I’m honest, no matter how great Nicki Minaj is to look at. I cannot stand this song at all, it’s definitely the worst song of the year. The sample is horribly used, neither act brings any semblance of their true talents to the table, and it’s just boring. Maybe I’ll watch it on mute.
However, I did notice that the video opens with what looks like a Beats By Dre iPod dock: YES PLEASE.
Audio can be grabbed here. Music fans, steer clear.
As I said earlier, Eminem opened up the show with a probably the best performance of Not Afraid I’ve seen him do, he’s then joined by Rihanna to perform their massive single, Love The Way You Lie.
Click below to see some more performances from the awards show by B.o.B, Bruno Mars, Hayley Williams, will.i.am, Nicki Minaj and to see Rick Ross pimping it out on a mobile scooter!
→ Continue Reading 2010 MTV Video Music Awards [Part II]
Lots of material in this episode, and plenty has already been released throughout the week.
To recap: Trey Songz’s latest visuals, Khalil’s debut visuals, the official single from the upcoming Foreign Exchange album, Cee-Lo’s anticipated F*** You video, a fantastic cover of Outkast’s Prototype, and finally a new Trey Songz and Drake collaboration.
Oddly, there are some huge hip-hop names making appearances in this episode. Click on to see what they’re doing hanging around these parts, and what everyone else is up to.
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 64
What a way to kick off the day. I didn’t think it was possible to like this Usher track any more than I already do, then I hear OTU favourite laced a verse down on it. If you loved the original. and like Hip Hop, then what are you waiting for? Click below dammit.
Joe Budden – OMG (remix) ft. Usher & will.i.am
Ted Smooth generally comes through with pretty fresh approaches with his remixes, and this is no different. He takes Usher’s dance-R&B smash and adds an old school hip-hop flavour, borrowing the beat from Afrika Bambaataa and The Soul Sonic Force’s classic Planet Rock. Hip-hop fans will prefer this version, fans of the original could go either way. One to check out and judge for yourself.
Usher-OMG (Ted Smooth Remix) ft. will.i.am
As much as I love this track, I’m both too tired and too busy to have watched this video yet. The song is amazing though, so I definitely will do so soon.
Edited with thoughts: Really good video. Fits the song really well by not going for too much, and letting the track do the work. Nice variety of scenes, with some warming parts shot in Africa (not sure where?) accompanied by some decent live footage.
Must voice my appreciation for K’naan’s range of hats. Boy, that guy has a lot of hats.
Audio is here.
T.I. collaborating with one half of the Black Eyed Peas? That to me sounds an awful, awful mix. Soon discovered I was very much mistaken, this track did not sound anything like I expected. This comes on a much chilled tip, with a tinge of old school flavour. Fergie doesn’t even annoy me on this (it helps it doesn’t sound much like her usual stuff in fairness).
Apparently this is an unreleased track from 2008, so that might explain why it’s not some hyped up electro beat that will.i.am is on these days. Go click the red stuff below to download this.
T.I. – Down Like That ft. Fergie & will.i.am
Another regularly-sized episode, which pleases me greatly. Good R&B (and some non R&B…) in here as ever, with plenty of big names sitting alongside some of our favourite newcomers such as Brutha and Bruno Mars. Click on for your weekly R&B allowance.
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 44
Cannot wait to check this out. R&B Fridays followers will remember a track from this popping up last week, and quite a few of you picked it up. I expect you all enjoyed it, as it is a good one and one of the better beats he could have picked.
Rocki drops the full 6-track project, and I’m eager to listen to it. As I said previously, the original will.i.am album Songs About Girls was hugely underrated, and it’s not only good to see it get some due but Evans appears to have enough talent of his own to make this a unique project. Conclusion: it’s definitely not one to miss out on.
Rocki Evans-More Songs About Girls
No details needed, love the original? You’ll love this. Click the red text below to get this club mix.
Usher – OMG (club mix) ft. will.i.am
Been waiting for this to drop for a while, as I’ve been enjoying the audio for quite some time. The track is beginning to blow up (thank us later Ush) and I’m pleased as it is a good one.
Whether you’re a fan of the early version audio or this newer version, the video is really good and it’s classic Usher with plenty of dancing and light effects. Pretty sure it’s 3D too.
For the first time in a few weeks, I’m not rushing to get this done. As great as that is for me, for you it means I’ve gathered a great deal of material and carefully sifted through it all to deliver the best stuff. Not only that, but I’ve offered a little more in terms of track reviews than in recent times. I’m alright like that.
Big names, small names, new names and old names contribute as ever to bring your weekly dose of R&B. I don’t see any reason to not grab the vast majority of the 18 tracks on offer, and as quality goes it’s one of the best episodes in recent memory. Click on to inject yourself with the goodness.
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 39
I won’t lie to you and say this is my thing, cos it ain’t. However, it’s pretty poppy and I think a lot of people will enjoy this. Definitely one for the dance/pop/mainstream fans, and don’t be surprised to hear this blow up really soon.
Crookers-Let’s Get Busy ft. will.i.am
Yeah, that dude from the Black Eyed Peas. He likes his name in lower case too it seems.
Looks like he’s the next one going for a solo career, and in honesty I don’t blame him as he doesn’t really get much of a look-in with BEP. Who knows, he might turn out to be alright.
The track below isn’t too bad and has a fairly conscious message, although it’s pretty simple stuff when compared to other ‘conscious rappers’. Still a good message though and you have to respect that, and maybe keeping it simple will bring this stuff mainstream.
apl.de.ap-We Be Workin’ ft. will.i.am
I’ve got time for this. It’s a side project of will.i.am’s, but with a spin: he’s constantly denying it’s him. It is him of course, just with a mask and stuff on: a very Daft Punk-esque move and further enhances my belief that anonymity creates buzz. To some this info isn’t new, but to me it is so deal with it.
Anywho, onto the music. It’s pretty much house/dance music, and it’s quite good as it doesn’t sound as overly-complex/sh*t as a majority of the current stuff. Two tracks below: the first is a feature, but ‘Zuper’ does all the work on it. Pretty good too, got some real potential to be an absolute club banger. The second is pretty bad quality (sorry), but is a good track. It’s very throwback, and has a very retro-style dance beat that I really like. Check it out, and keep your eyes peeled for a better version soon.
Shouts to Sash for this nice find. I’d link you to some form of social networking site for him, but he’s backwards like that.
Steve Aoki-I’m In The House ft. Zuper Blahq
Zuper Blahq-Here We Go
This week has seen a number of leaks (potentially) from Usher’s upcoming Raymond vs. Raymond, and it’s those that anchor this week’s episode.
This milestone episode has got a lot of quality, and a lot of new tracks that I’ve really enjoyed this past week from both huge and lesser known names, as well as a surprising number of unreleased tracks, and some from artists of years gone by which will catch some by surprise.
It feels like only yesterday I wrote Episode 1!
→ Continue Reading R&B Fridays: Episode 30
Never did I think Cheryl Cole would make it onto this site. I checked out this video on a recommendation, and it’s actually rather good. Very artistic, and superb use of the double vision technique, the video is a far cry from what you’d expect from Cheryl (or pop music for that matter). There are some obvious similarites with the Love Lockdown video, but that’s not strictly a bad thing.
The plaudits don’t end there either: the song is actually not too bad largely thanks to some good production from will.i.am, and the track is about 50 million times better than the horrible, incredibly boring, unimaginative tripe that was her first single. I’d genuinely recommend people checked this out, and I was (and still am) shocked at the quality of this video. Good work.
Yesterday was all about the bits and pieces surrounding the music, and there was only one new track for you to enjoy. Well, I’m making up for it here with a post packed with quality new tracks, from uptempo through to mellow.
Also, this is officially the 100th post on the site-thanks for your continued support folks. In honour of that, I’ve put music in from a ridiculous range of genres to represent all that we represent, so hit the click.
→ Continue Reading 100th Post Extravaganza!