Welcome to the first installation of the FC SELEX – a monthly playlist of banging music from banging females or female identifying artists, hand picked from yours truly Ludo & Elkka at femme culture.
The name of our collective is pretty self-explanatory and acts as a statement of what we do – repping the female culture by celebrating and shining a light on multi-disciplinary artists.
Motivational speech aside, what that actually (and practically) means is that we are London-based record label and collective, born out of the desire to champion women in the arts and push forward-thinking music, and we do so by throwing club nights, organising art installations (check out our latest one I See You), photography exhibitions like Sophie Mayanne’s Behind The Scars, hosting radio shows – check our show on Radar Radio – and obviously, releasing absolutely beautiful music.
With the FC SELEX, you can expect fresh picks and monthly gems from every corner of the world, of every genre of music, from our favourite gals of the moment - which we might find inspiring or worth listening to for a variety of different reasons, but have no fear - we will not leave you wondering as we will explain (our sometimes obvious) motives behind why we picked x, y and z tracks.
From house to ambient, via grime and hip hop, meandering through techno and everything in between, this playlist will redefine your concept of ‘girl music’.
Follow the playlist to stay updated with our FC SELEX – and check us out on socials too to see what’s happening in the @itsfemmeculture world.
• Rapsody - Power: The opening pick for the new FC SELEX column is a statement tune from North Carolina MC Rapsody, kicking things off with Power. The track is a, well, powerful conversation about what truly pulls the strings of human beings - whether it's religion, violence, money or sex, the rapper goes deep into what makes the world go ‘round with a lyrical ability that doesn't go unnoticed ('He said a good shepherd don’t trip over what they heard/herd'). Power has all the ingredients a track needs to become legendary - the content, the bars, the energy, a strong beat - and Kdot.
• Kelela - Blue Light: Warp Records' queen Kelela arrived in October with debut LP 'Take Me Apart' - which literally took us apart. Coming after the highly acclaimed Cut 4 Me mixtape, the R&B icon in the making takes us on a personal journey of 14 tracks that reflect modern love, lust and everything in between, with dreamy vocals and an electronic production that is out of this world (Terror Danjah, Bok Bok, Jam City ...).
• Smerz - Have fun: The Norwegian duo are back with another track that makes us uncomfortably satisfied. The whole track has something very mysterious about it, an underlying tone of un-said words and rhythms that are hinted but not fully stated, creating a parallel universe where girly prom dresses are sinister. And we love it.
• Elkka - Control: lose yourself in Elkka's latest single Control, released via femme culture, a track so beautifully crafted it feels like you're showering in a waterfall of tiny diamonds. Control is an uplifting melodic tune that carves its way into your head and just ends up sitting there for days, whilst you mutter the 'we must succumb' hook away at your desk and day dream about what could've been...
• Avalon Emerson - One More Fluorescent Rush: the A side of Avalon Emerson's latest release on Whities literally feels like what it's called - a 6 minute and 27 seconds long journey that is a crescendo of psychedelic joy, leaving us ecstatic after each listen. We dare you to find a more accurate or representative way to explain to someone what a fluorescent rush is...
• Yaeji - Raingurl: we 5000% live by this track. 'Make it rain gurl, make it rain' is our motto for 2018, with Yaeji inspiring us to move and hustle our way through life. Such an infectious gem, impossible not to bop your head or 2-step to, essential dj tool for any house set... Raingurl is the perfect combination of house treading on the fine line of pop.
• Flohio, L-Vis 1990, Cassive - Yeah Yeah: Flohio didn't come to be your friend, she's not here to play games. Young Flo is spitting her reality with nothing but the brutal truth of how she feels about things and people, with a flow that is as cutting as her lyrics and a renovated attitude of a young mc ready to take over the scene. Keep your eyes peeled for this one because we feel like Flohio is just holding back on more fire, ready to be sprayed all over the place in 2018.
• UMFANG - Where Is She: back in June, DiscWoman co-founder UMFANG was back with her banging debut LP on Technicolour, leaving no prisoners whatsoever as the track loops and deepens into the dark corridors of techno. And when the claps and hi-hats come in, aggressive and sharp, you know that Where Is She is a very serious, dark and sometimes acid-y matter that can slay any dancefloor. Take note.
• IAMDDB - Ooo: Get to know Mancunian singer IAMDDB, the new rising star in the UK (for now) hip hop scene. She's coming for our headtops, armed with ridiculously badass flow and lyrics, such confidence and attitude that it's hard to believe this young woman is just 21... Hoodrich is a brilliant piece of work with 7 tracks to make you walk down the road like the boss you are.
• Kelly Lee Owens - More Than A Woman (remix): Golden remix of the classic RNB track More Than A Woman by Aaliyah (RIP). Kelly Lee Owens perfectly and expertly crafts this new piece of work, bringing the original version into completely unfamiliar territories and molding it into a UK-feeling, bass heavy, squobbly tech-house track. Heavy.
• Cardi B - Cartier Bardi: What a year it's been for Cardi B, and we couldn't be happier to see her win. The NY rapper is the breath of fresh air that was so much needed in US rap - an authentic, transparent female voice to remind everyone out there that rap isn't a boys game - and proof of this is the fact that literally anywhere in the world you will not be able to create as many moshpits as when playing any Cardi B tune. Go on girl, keep being you at 5000% because we all fucking love it.
• Ikonika - Oral Suspension: Unsurprisingly Ikonika dropped another killer track in November on a 10" as part of Don’t Be Afraid’s dubs series. This track literally has everything, from grime influences to percussions passing via midwest techno. All rounded up by a feeling of warmth and a beat that doesn't seem to ever settle into a specific pace. Ikonika is always keeping us on our toes...
• Nidia Minaj - Brinquedo: Principe Discos leading gal Nidia honestly.... blows our minds. Her music doesn't seem to care at all about pre-established or existing lanes. In Nidia Minaj's world, there is no limit and every sound is possible - and in its own way - it works. Brinquedo is a joyful track that emanates joy and sentiment with every beat. We dare you not to bop to this one.
• Octo Octa - Adrift : Adrift is a dark walk into the depths of Octo Octa's soul, with all the plot twists and unexpected synths that come with crawling with your eyes closed in the tunnel of techno. To not be mistaken with a 'dark' track in the sense of oppressing - Adrift keeps growing and growing in power as the tracks proceeds, where obscurity has actually become your friend and is leading you through the night.
• Paper Dollhouse - Haze: Haze is the first single taken from Paper Dollhouse’s upcoming album The Sky Looks Different Here, described by the duo as an 'incredibly vivid journey through a nuclear nightside dreamworld'. We couldn't agree more - Haze feels like waking up in a parallel world after an acid-fuelled night, where as you open your eyes, the sunlight slightly bothers your sight but at the same time it culls you and welcomes you to this new horizon of cristal clear ambient pop. We would definitely live in that world.