This week’s track is Hey Now by London Grammar off of Metal and Dust, and the Arty Remix of the same. Not a new song by any measure, but I heard it for the first time on KCRW earlier last week, and then again in a house podcast in a house remix. So today’s track of the week is presented in two parts. First, the haunting yet slightly electro-poppy original, and then the dance remix which ups the tempo, adds in a classic four on the floor dance line and synths.
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You’re No Good by Major Lazer
This week’s track if You’re No Good by Major Lazer, featuring Santigold, Vybz Kartel, Danielle Haim and Yasmin. There’s been a dearth of good music the last few weeks, hence the lack of tracks of the week. I’ve finally gotten around to going through a backlog of albums that came out in the last month plus (Yeezus? Blerg, what a joke). I’ve finally made it to the latest Major Lazer album and the opening track from the album stood out, mostly since it sounds like a James Bond title track: “It’s for your eyes only, living for you solely.”
Track of the Week: Wake Me Up by Avicii
This week’s track is Wake Me Up by Avicii. Originally found on his 2013 promo mix, which debuted a lot of new material, this new track is a totally different direction from traditionally house and dance/electronica. Much more pop, much more designed for mainstream listening, and definitely a tad country (stripped guitar, anyone?). Aloe Blacc (who, coincidentally, went to my high school a year ahead of me) lends his vocals to the track, giving it a touch of Blacc’s typical soul flair as well. I’m excited to see what else is coming in the new Avicii album, it could be an interesting and exciting new direction for electronica.
Track of the Week: Hanging Gardens by Classixx
This week’s track is Hanging Gardens by Classsixx off of Hanging Gardens. A brooding, poppy number with an atmospheric / navel-gazing sound, this opening track off of the eponymous album is sure to lighting up your day.
Track of the Week: Bow Down by Westside Connection
This week’s track is Bow Down by Westside Connection off of Bow Down. Angry, thuggy, mean, and mad, it’s an anthem to the 90s East Coast-West Coast feud.
Track of the Week: 25 or 6 to 4 by Chicago
This week’s track is 25 or 6 to 4 by Chicago off of Chicago. Recorded at the end of the 60s, but with a sound that’s squarely past the 60s, this song opens with a rocking horn line on top of the melody carried by the guitars and drums. Toss in Peter Cetera’s vocals (singing about who-knows-what), the song is a classic.
Track of the Week: Get Lucky by Daft Punk
This week’s track is Get Lucky by Daft Punk (featuring Pharrell). Fantastic song that does all the talking for itself, so just a few notes: (a) it’s classic Daft Punk, down to the computer-Mr.-Roboto voice, (b) it’s Pharrell singtalking, and (c) it’s awesome funk.
Track of the Week: Hey Love by Delfonics & Playa Hater by Notorious B.I.G.
This week’s track is a twofer, a classic and a classic in two very different genres. We start with Hey Love by The Delfonics and close with Playa Hater by the Notorious B.I.G. Start listening first to Hey Love, a fantastic soul song from a group that provided the inspiration for many hip-hop samples. Then move on to Playa Hater, where Ditty and Biggie not only sampled it, but basically made a cover of the song with thuggier lyrics.
Track of the Week: Lament by Groove 8
This week’s track is Lament by Groove 8 off of Debut. Unfortunately there’s no album version of the song available on YouTube, so live set it is. Groove 8 performed one of the side stages in the 2009 (or was it 2010?) July 4th Fillmore Jazz Festival. Straight up jazz fusion / jazz funk, the set was a ton of fun and probably the best act I saw that year at the Jazz Festival. This week’s track is picked off of their Debut album, a slightly slower, slightly more melancholy tune with big horns and a trombone for a lead. It’s a little drizzly in SF today and this seems to capture a sleepy Saturday morning — and a good song to bring Track of the Week back to life after a two month hiatus.
Track of the Week: Leave The Lights On by Meiko
This week’s track is Leave The Lights On by Meiko off of The Bright Side. There’s been a dearth of new good music (at least music that has crossed my desk), so this week’s track goes back to the middle of last year. An upbeat and peppy song, it’s the most uptempo song on The Bright Side, an album that’s mostly about falling in love and other good things like that. Wondering what was catchy about this and this type of song, a friend opined: “I’m wondering what’s with the girls with husky voices singing about ‘lights’, cf Ellie Goulding”.