Real talk, "Might Have Missed" might be my favorite feature to pen because at its core, it's about sharing dope music with people who will appreciate it. It's also growing in popularity, so a big shoutout to all y'all who keep coming back for more freshness. Thank you for letting my job be selecting quality tunes. I owe each and everyone of you a beer. Feel free to never make me collect on that debt, because despite how cool my job is, I'm still basically broke. Anyway, onto the music.
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...
Presentation isn't everything, but it certainly matters. Before I even listened, this effort stuck out to me because of the artwork and all the (!!!) and (#). Needless to say it was unconventional and I was curious (no George). After listening I came to find there's a hell of a lot more here than some extra puncuation. This effort is substantial to say the least; it's a god damn event. Everything from the cascading, genre-bending beat to that potent hook combine to create an awesome experience. Some songs can be easily broken up - beat, verse, hook and you're done - but here, it doesn't feel like there are individual parts. Well, there are, but they are just more powerful when combined. Like some sort of Power Ranger of dope music, all the parts come together to form one super powerful record that is capable of defeating Zordon himself...or just making your Monday a little easier. Whichever.
How can something so airy, smooth, and understated hit me this hard? I don't really have an answer, but sometimes it's best not to ask questions and just enjoy (like eating at McDonald's). Normally, low-key, slower R&B cuts don't keep my attention for long, but I had no trouble keeping focus on Azekel's "Chronophobia." I think it's because of all the fixins, like horns or that "clicky" sound you can totally make with your tongue. And oh yeah, I guess Azekel ain't half bad either. I love how he just glides atop the beat yet still has some serious kick. Give it more than one listen, too. I've found myself enjoying this effort more after each listen, hence why I've been listening to it seemingly non-stop.
Freddie Gibbs, Saweetie & Earl Sweatshirt: Best of the Week
Freddie Gibbs, Saweetie, and Earl Sweatshirt, among others, had the best new songs on Audiomack this week.
Sweet Baby Jesus what a hook! A million points, dollars, and cupcakes to Jack Freeman for making this song. After the first 10 seconds I was already sold because his voice is fucking perfect for this production. There really ain't nothin' like a phenomenal hook and this is as phenomenal as phenomenal gets. This chorus takes a good song and makes it great. The rest of the song's participants, from the Soul Brothers (Jett I. Masstyr and Donnie Houston) to Hollywood Floss, are sound, but full disclosure, as I was listening, a part of me was just waiting for the hook. The track can be played at 8, but during that hook I crank it up to 11. It's amazing how some expert, soulful crooning can tie an effort together so neatly.
Obviously, The DJBooth is all hip-hop all the time, but not all the time. I mean, if something's exceptional, we should be able to share it without worrying about its genre, right? I love pizza but I can't very well eat it for every single meal...or can I? Anyway, The KickDrums' new effort may not be Illmatic, but it's really good. I love how smooth this effort is. It doesn't feel poppy or sugar-coated, but it has a light, vibrancy to it which is just scrumptious. It's a simple listen, in that it goes down smooth, but the track isn't simple by any means - specifically the beat. I love the drums, and that breakdown near the end is really fun. The bite from the drums, combined with singer Alex Fitts' airy vocals make this a really flavorful, refreshing listen.
Part of me wanted to pick something for all you hip-hop heads out there, especially because all the selections this week seem to break out of the conventional hip-hop structure, but then the other part of me couldn't stop dancing to Tuxedo and that part of me told it's other half to include this fresh ditty. I'm not going to not include arguably one of the best songs of the month because it has too many BPM's and not enough bars; that's dumb and if you don't like this effort you're dumb (probably).
Also, it gives me the chance to reference this, but mainly it's really good. What's not to like? An incredibly funky, rich beat and Mayer Hawthorne's, soulful, yet bubbly vocals. Sounds like a winner to me. It's like "Happy" but you haven't heard it seven billion times. I can't think of a bad time or place to play this song. Cleaning your room? Dance away your laundry. Partying? This will be the icebreaker to talk to that girl. Workout? This will have me smiling even when I'm on the treadmill (I hate the treadmill). When something is this fresh, this colorful, it's good anytime. Like pizza bagels.
[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.]