Somewhere between Pink Floyd and post-Beatles George Harrison lies the music of Jonathan Wilson. Clocking in at a touch over seven minutes, “Dear Friend” really comes in two parts– a beautiful, sleepy ballad that gives way to a wonderfully psychedelic jam that dominates the latter half of the song. Turn up the volume and enjoy!
Also listen to: “Desert Raven”, “Love to Love”, “Ballad of the Pines”
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While some of the shine has been lost, Joey Bada$$ is still one of the brightest upcoming artists in hip-hop right now, and “Waves” represents all of the reasons why. For a 17-year old to produce such a supremely smart and insightful track gives a lot of hope for what’s to come once his first official release hits shelves.
Also listen to: “Christ Conscious”, “Survival Tactics”, “Big Dusty”
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Assuming you survived the madness of Black Friday, here is a great pop track from the band Hospitality. While much sunnier than what they showed on their sophomore release that came out earlier this year, “Friends of Friends” still stands as some of their best work.
Also listen to: “I Miss Your Bones”, “Eighth Avenue”, “Going Out”, “Argonauts”
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If you’re winding down for the day before Thanksgiving (or Black Wednesday or Friendsgiving or whatever you wish to call it), may I present you with this beautifully executed track. Like much of their debut, “The Fall” relies heavily on the delicate vocals of lead singer Milosh– who has rightfully been compared to Sade– piercing through the lightly textured backdrop provided by Robin Hannibal.
Also listen to: “Open”, “Last Dance”, “3 Days”
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Shortlisted for the Mercury prize earlier this year, Jungle’s eponymous debut is best summarized by this decidedly funky single. Taking notes from early Earth Wind and Fire and Kool & The Gang, there’s a lot to enjoy here, and the hook is as addicting as anything you’ll hear this year.
Also listen to: “The Heat”, “Time”, “Lemonade Lake”
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After their incredible debut Death From Above 1979 took a full ten years before getting back together and releasing their sophomore effort. “Trainwreck 1979” follows in the same vein as the what put this Canadian duo on the map over a decade ago, but has some new tricks along the way.
Also listen to: “Virgins”, “Romantic Rights”, “Black History Month”, “Romantic Rights”
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While he is more well known for his collaborations with the likes of Feist, Jamie Lidell and Chilly Gonzales, Mocky actually is a pretty solid songwriter in his own right as shown here. It’s the perfect song for a Sunday morning.
Also listen to: “Fighting Away the Tears” (feat. Feist), “Guiding Light”, “How Will I Know You?”
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After his classic debut, Kendrick Lamar is back with an impressively polished sound, relying heavily on The Isley Brothers’ “Who’s That Lady.” While it is a departure from what Lamar fans are used to, it’s every bit as poignant as you would expect from one of hip-hop’s biggest rising stars.
Also listen to: “Swimming Pools”, “Sing About Me, I’m Dying of Thirst”, “Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe”, “Backseat Freestyle”, “Kush & Corinthians”, “ADHD”
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In case you haven’t heard, Mark Ronson is back at it, this time going full force with 60’s and 70’s funk, complete with all the necessary clichés. Truly, the most surprising element is how Bruno Mars carries the song with a relatively convincing attitude. Between this and Prince’s new album, perhaps there will be a resurgence of this genre after all.
Also listen to: “Ooh Wee” (feat. Ghostface Killah, Nate Dogg, Trife & Saigon), “Valerie” (feat. Amy Winehouse), “Just” (feat. Alex Greenwald)
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In addition to being a quintessential 90’s hit, the Spike Jonze directed video is still one of the most memorable music videos ever made. Break out your air guitar and enjoy!
Also listen to: “My Name Is Jonas”, “Say It Ain’t So”, “Undone – The Sweater Song”, “Island in the Sun”, and “El Scorcho”
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