Listening to Big K.R.I.T. and eating Doritos is great and all, but on the real, I had a void in my week because I didn't get to share in the DJBooth dopeness with y'all. I mean, don't get me wrong, Nathan did a great job (although I'm offended he thinks I wouldn't pick E-40!), but Might Have Missed is like my baby; I live to share music. Well, I'm back now - no need to worry - so enough chit-chat, let's get to the music.
But first, for those who are new to my weekly column, here's a quick breakdown. Every week, we feature a lot of new music. Like, so much music that even the hardest of hardcore music lovers may have trouble listening to everything. As a result there inevitably will be some joints that passed you by, and that is a damn shame. A great song unlistened to is like a non-alcoholic beer - what's the point?
So here's some of the particularly fresh DJBooth-featured material from the past seven days or so that you might have missed, with an emphasis on the indie and underground (because it's a lot harder to miss the superstars). As the kids (definitely don't) say, leggoo...
Part of the reason I was so excited to do last week's Might Have Missed was to spotlight this record. So, yeah, it's two weeks old, but do I care? No. (Check out the name tag, you're in my world grandma). If you feel slighted, I encourage you to write a letter, or better yet, just press play on Rayman's latest and all will be forgiven. How fresh is this effort?! The word "fresh" gets easily tossed around (see the title), but this is literally fresh; like hipster-farmers-market-kale fresh. Such a crisp sound! I have been fuckin' with Allan for a hot minute now, and I think this is his most convincing effort yet. There is an understated, natural energy to this effort that just gets me; it's just so fresh. It doesn't scream catchy, pop tune, but this shit will get you moving like "Shake It Off." It's a meal that tastes good, but is also good for you; no guilt and all the enjoyment. I think it's Rayman's raspy vocals which give it a nice edge; he has a unique voice, which is a great juxtaposition on a smooth, catchy beat like the one that backs him here. Two weeks old and it's still fresh.
Yoooooo!!! Yoooo!!! This song right here? THIS song right HERE?! This song is the coolest. Kev makes the Fonz look like Drake. Lemme tell you why I love this song so much by comparing it to OG Maco. Now, don't get me wrong, "U Guessed It" is a cool song and I've listened to it more than I'd like to admit, but the beat is pressing four keys on a piano; give me two hours and I could figure it out. If I can make your beat, it ain't that complicated. Still, the song is random as fuck and so much fun to sing along to. Kev Decor's has that same over-the-top, frenetic, and jarring energy, but the end result is a real song, you know, in that the beat is not made on this. Everything is constantly changing and evolving on this track (I love the diversity in Kev's approach) and yet, it is such a simple, fluid listen. Excellent, excellent work!
Was Kev's experimental style too much for you? Maybe Allan didn't get you movin' and groovin? You must fancy yourself a no-nonsense hip-hop head then. Don't worry, I got you covered. Well, I should say Kourvioisier has you covered, because on "It Chose Us" he brings a no-nonsense attitude that will have the purists in the audience testifying. I thought the production here from Dre Rubio was great. I love the jazzy sample, but there is some serious kick behind it; it's not very often that a jazzy beat packs a strong punch; it's perfect for Kourvioisier's gritty, sprinting flow. Maybe "marathoning" flow works better, though, because from start to finish, Kourvioisier doesn't slow down to take a breath and at no time does he falter. You're welcome, rap nerds.
Some people call this song "Rivers," I prefer to call it "Everyone who makes your favorite Chi-Town emcee sound good all on one awesome track." On the boards here are Double-0, Donnie Trumpet, Nate Fox and Peter Cottontale; A.K.A The Social Experiment. Yes the same The Social Experiment cats who are behind Chance's last few releases. It is probably an article for another time, but I love the live instrumental sound coming from the Windy City right now, and I think these guys are a large part of that fresh style. Here they cook up a rich, vibrant, and best of all, horn-smattered beat perfect for Nikki's soulful crooning. Speaking of Nikki, she's another one who has been helping rappers sound good for years now (Lupe, STS, the list goes on), but on this offering it's all her and I couldn't be happier. Her vocals are calm, but oh-so-powerful. "Rivers" is outstanding and if you don't like it I can only assume you also hate pizza, naps and Beyonce.
Good luck trying not to feel this hook! Once that beat breaks down and Omar busts out the singing, you will be hooked. Although, truthfully, I was hooked when I saw Zed's Dead was on the boards. He's one of the only guys in EDM (if he is even "EDM" I honestly have no idea ) that I know and can really listen to so I knew that the production would be stellar...and it is. It's epic and cascading, but doesn't overwhelm me like most electronic driven numbers. Omar is a blast to listen to on the mic. His raspy flow combined with the fun, rich atmosphere makes for a great listen. I'm listening through my computer speakers, but could easily see myself at a spring-break sized rager, red cup in hand, making an ass of myself while this song blasts through a proper speaker system; it's a blast. Also, a million DJBooth dollars to whoever can name the sample at the beginning.
[Lucas Garrison is a writer for DJBooth.net. His favorite album is “College Dropout,” but you can also tweet him your favorite Migos songs at @LucasDJBooth.]