Christopher Willits electronic music is atypical of most music released on Ann Arbor’s Ghostly International imprint — it’s more organic, unabashedly floaty and based around vocals rather than a chopped array of samples. Like a mating of Luomo and Steve Reich, maybe. But like a good majority of Ghostly releases, it’s technically impeccable.
Mixtapes are great; especially when your favorite Swedish duo jj makes one and offers it up for grabs. Like the title suggests, it “Kills” from the opening song “Still” featuring Weezy-inspired whispers to the piano melody from Jay-Z‘s “Empire State of Mind” sliced throughout the hip-hop, emo jam that is “New Work.”
The Sri Lankan rapper’s new Wikileaks-inspired mixtape called “ViCKi LEEKX” is a 36 minute rhythm assault featuring traditional rhythms by Diplo, Switch and Blaqstarr with hip-hop beats ‘n’ rhymes by M.I.A.. Being the political person that she is, Maya opens up the mixtape with a quote from WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange: “We leak the information to the public, and we defend ourselves against inevitable legal and political attacks. Vicki Leekz: leak me.” over a sampling of “I Touch Roses” by ’80s synth-pop band Book of Love. Off to a great start…
Indie yuppies Vampire Weekend have set up their kissing booth in the middle of the dance floor and everyone’s invited to shake what their mama gave them. If Paul Simon and The Strokes (if they were an all girl band) played spin the bottle together and produced a bouncing baby band, Vampire Weekend would be rocking the preppy-rock preschoolers to sleep. Confused? That’s okay. Download a free MP3 of “Fight For This Love.”
OK Go are the kings of viral-music videos. From wearing ghillie suits in This Too Shall Pass (3 million YouTube hits, and still counting), walking on treadmills in Here it Goes Again (52 million YouTube hits), to the recent viral hit featuring a Rube Goldberg machine version for This Too Shall Pass (17 million YouTube hits) we’re wondering if the remix of “White Knuckles” from electro producer Sam Sparro will turn the original’s wild minimalism into a ripped, disco-hit music sensation!
You’ve heard “Blue Christmas” countless times, so how about spicing up with the Texas all-punk girl trio Girl In A Coma? Sassy, bluesy and gentle in all the right places, their rendition of Elvis Presley‘s holiday classic offers a lovely punk-twang to the original that sounds like it took months in the studio to perfect. We love it. Elvis would love it. And it’s free — just in time for the holiday gatherings.
Despite having the typical indie-rock hair, electro-punk styling, and disco fever slant to make things interesting, Cut Copy are churning out their own version of scummy disco framed by fluffy pop and dancefloor-friendly guitars. If you’re like me and already missing LCD Soundsystem, not to worry, 2011 will be all about Cut Copy. Download a free MP3 from their forthcoming album Zonoscope.
Iconic artists and Chicago natives Common, Lupe Fiasco, Jennifer Hudson, and No I.D. recently collaborated to record the track, “We Can Do It Now,” an ode to their hometown. The track is being featured in the Gatorade REPLAY series, where classic sports games that ended in controversy are replayed, in a somewhat crazy scheme to recreate history, by the original teams. Gatorade reunites the original teammates and provides them with an 8-week training program so they can get back in peak shape. The teams then replay their game to settle the score once and for all.