The last couple of years have seen producers round the world blurring the lines between hip hop, jazz, house and beats (whatever that means) and flinging out joyous, mind-bending new music like Gods chucking stars across the sky. This column trawls the internet to try and make sense of it all. Here is the Latest News from Neptune.
Props to the lads over at the Resonate show for putting me on to this soundcloud channel; Detona Funk is solving the decade old problem- how do you cop Baile Funk outside of the favelas? There’s all sorts of strong anti-appropriation arguments that suggest it’s probably better if you can’t, and I’ve been known to voice my own discomfort at the ease with which lurkers can cherry pick from ghetto scenes then get fat with their own imitations. But! At the same time, shit is rarely that simple. Telling the artists sharing their tracks via Detona Funk that they should stop anyone outside the Favela from hearing their music seems patronising at best, and the Detona account certainly doesn’t sound like it’s watering any shit down. Instead you get a steady stream of crazy favela beats, high tempo shattered reggaeton with various MCs going wild over the top. There’s mad energy throughout, and the fact you can download almost everything is a gift from the Gods – you could quite easily pull together a heavy Baile set from this one account alone. Big!
Gaika – Security
I’ve had Gaika on lock since the ever generous Mickey Lightfoot first tipped me to check him. His new mixtape gives zero disappointments; put simply, Gaika is out there on his own right now, an dhe deserves to be massive. The only act I can think of that come close is Death Grips, ‘though Gaika is taking their apocalyptic hip hop breakdown, and jamming it, screaming, into the UK hardcore continuum. His vocals are preacherman Bashment fire, his beats have got enough low end to rip several holes in the bassbin, and, when he wants, he can turn a collection of wrong turns and vile melodies into the strangest club bangers you’ve heard. Witness his collaboration with Mista Silva, PMVD, where Gaika spars with Silva’s Ghanaian flow turning it from a sweet harmony into a claustrophobic, industrial dancehall creeper. Although this tape has been pushed through Mixpak, Im fairly sure Warp are involved somewhere, and wouldn’t be at all surprised if they a) released an album from him and b) won the Mercury with it.
Kinsley – Look Like You (Afro Follies Mix)
It’s over a year old and I still doubt I’ll ever get tired of DJ TJeay’s ragged as fuck afro bootleg of M Darrg & Grizzy’s Look Like You (here for the last 3 people alive who haven’t heard it). But, bruv I was not ready to find this remix from a guy called Jeremey Kinsley. Kinsley is based in the Mauritius, and he’s taken the classic ‘trap ‘trap in the bando’ sample and chucked it over some wild, zipping percussion. I don’t really know what genre to call this, it’s just doing it’s own kinda moohmbaton-ish, reggaeton-ish, slowmotion EDM-ish thing, very, very well. It’s maybe not as immediate as TJeay’s mix, but it’s meaning the tracks staying in my playlists for a month more yet. Once again there’s a free download – don’t sleep !
Silentjay x Jace XL - Sacrifice
At first glance it may seem a bit of a curve ball for Bradley Zero’s Rhythm Section imprint to be picking up on a Melbourne RnB duo, but a listen to the EP Sacrifice soon makes sense of it all – Silentjay puts together exactly the kind of dusty, organic funk the label has become known for, whilst Jace XL emotes like he’s channelling a young D’Angelo. How is that not gonna work? This release originally came as a limited tape a couple of months back, demand has been strong enough that RS have now pressed up a 12”, which it’s safe to assume will sell out in double time, and end up commanding silly money a couple of months down the line- my advice is to pay yer £9 now…