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Sound Check's Blog – April 2016 Archive (54)

NEW MUSIC: Abdu Ali's 'MONGO' is A Mantra of Black Queer Strength #SoundCheck

It seems almost unfair to write about Abdu Ali's latest release after only a week. This is the sort of shit people will be writing dissertations about in 20 years. The density of sound and ideas is staggering. There's a lot to unpack. Listening to MONGO is like injecting bell hooks directly into your brain. Listening to MONGO is like spending a night inside Miles Davis' trumpet. Listening to Mongo is like suspending time in a computer crash. It's also not like those things…


Added by Sound Check on April 29, 2016 at 6:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Funk-n-hip-hop artist Rickstar releases exuberant EP ‘Funkafied Suave’

Not sure if it’s the fur coat or what but Rickstar EP ‘Funkafied Suave’ gives me several shades of funktastic 1970s pimps. The blistering album is an interesting blend hip-hop and late-Motown-inspired funk. Filled to the brim with in-your-face instrumentation, like the confrontational drums that open ‘Heart Strings’ and the bold horn section on ‘Get Up If You’re Bad’ feat. Sinse. Rickstar’s enthusiasm, showmanship, and pure talent shines brightly, song after song, where he,…


Added by Sound Check on April 29, 2016 at 4:00pm — No Comments

AFROPUNK PREMIERE: Experimental electronica artist Lawrence Lindell drops ambient fight song ‘Melanin Battle’

Today's premiere comes from Lawrence Lindell, an experimental artist out of L.A. His brand new single ‘Melanin Battle’ is an ambient, synth-driven soundscape that builds and builds as if Lindell was performing before your eyes, a row of loop pedals at his feet. There’s a subtle tone of the theatric that creeps in as the track builds, suggesting a little bit of suspense and adrenaline. "I created Melanin Battle as a score to a few thoughts I was having in my head," Lindell…


Added by Sound Check on April 29, 2016 at 12:41pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Bad Brains’ Dr. Know and Deftones’ Chino Moreno join forces for hardcore supergroup Saudade

Chino Moreno of Deftones and BAD BRAINS guitarist Dr. Know, drummer Mackie Jayson, and Crosses’ bassist Chuck Doom and jazz keyboardist John Medeski join forces as new supergroup project called Saudade. Their first single, also called ‘Saudade’, is a brooding quiet storm that rumbles into thunderous intensity. It’s not totally clear which direction the project wants to go in, but this sure is a cool start.

Members of BAD BRAINS will be playing alongside members…


Added by Sound Check on April 29, 2016 at 11:00am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: British neo-soul singer Samm Henshaw brings down the roof with ‘Our Love’

Happy day, 22-year-old British singer Samm Henshaw has recently released a new single called ‘Our Love’. It is a vintage soul track that takes its high-energy and rock-y-blues cues from gospel and early rock-n-roll, which quickly crescendo into an uplifting party-of-a-song. Definitely check it out for yourself down below and come see Samm play at AFROPUNK Paris June 4, tickets available HERE.…


Added by Sound Check on April 28, 2016 at 4:26pm — No Comments

AFROPUNK PREMIERE: L.A. native Brit Manor shares funky disco-soul single ‘Wheels of Eternity’

On this fine afternoon we’re premiering a new song from Brit Manor called ‘Wheels of Eternity’ from her upcoming EP 'Only Child'. This disco dance track might be dressed up in sequins and funky-ass bass, but lyrically, Manor poetically explores themes of reincarnation and the transcendent. “Having lost a handful of loved ones in recent years and subsequently spreading ashes on shores, I was left with accepting the implications of death and the afterlife. Which to me seems…


Added by Sound Check on April 28, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

FEATURE: Brooklyn-based Control the Sound live out our teenage garage-rock band dreams

You need to check out the youngins of Brooklyn garage rock band Control The Sound. Formed by a handful of 11-year-old musicians bursting at the seams with high-energy, creativity, and passion for rock, funk, and ska music. To be honest, unassuming stature and young ages will lower expectations for many, but that only serves to their benefit. They kids blow it right out of the water every time, blowing unsuspecting minds ‘round Brooklyn. Peep some of their live performances…


Added by Sound Check on April 28, 2016 at 10:26am — 7 Comments

AFROPUNK PREMIERE: Afro-beat-ska-jazz fusion band Nubiyan Twist drops vivacious single 'Headhunter'

Nubiyan Twist’s brand new track 'Headhunter' is a celebratory blend of ska-flavored jazz melodies, Afro-beats, and bright, jazzy horns. One of the tracks from their much-anticipated EP ‘Siren Song’, 'Headhunter' packs a heavy punch of eclectic dub-fusion that's layered with neo-soul and latin instrumentation. “Nubiya takes inspiration from Nat King Cole and gives a nod to Wendy Rene’s ‘After Laughter’ in her writing. A less common addition to a Ska track is Latin…


Added by Sound Check on April 28, 2016 at 1:30am — No Comments

FEATURE: Brother-in-law confirms Prince's Paisley Park to become Graceland-style memorial

Almost a week after the music legend's sudden death, there’s already been plenty of speculation as to what will happened to his estate, Paisley Park. The (approximately) 65,000 square-foot complex housed the artist’s recording studio, event spaces for the epic parties he threw, the treasure trove of a zillion unreleased songs, rehearsal space, and a ton of cool, mysterious shit we’ll probably never know about. Unless what friend and Prince’s former fiancee, Sheila E.,…


Added by Sound Check on April 27, 2016 at 2:00pm — 1 Comment

NEW MUSIC: Check the Afrofuturist Visuals to WebsterX's Latest “Everything” #SoundCheck

With an Afrofuturist sensibility and a mesmerizingly off-kilter flow, WebsterX goes looking for life on Mars on his latest head-spinner “Everything.” Q the Sun handles builds a beat off an interpolated Radiohead riff. The video by Cody Laplant and Damien Blue is almost more a short film, with WebsterX's Martian falling to Earth to bring hope and a sense of identity to a young kid. It's strange, moving, and totally captivating.

By… Continue

Added by Sound Check on April 27, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Check out British ambient soulstress HAULA’s haunting new track ‘Losing Touch’

‘Losing Touch’ is a new single from British singer HAULA. It’s a haunted electronic ballad that soars with emotional and musical swells and intensity. As I’ve come to expect, the Oxford soulstress delivers a mesmerizing vocal performance that dominates the brooding ambient soundscape. Listen…


Added by Sound Check on April 26, 2016 at 4:20pm — No Comments

OP-ED: A Fantasy Set-list of Deep Cuts for the Bad Brains/Living Colour/Fishbone Powerjam at AFROPUNK 2016 #SoundCheck

This year, AFROPUNK is bringing together the holy trinity of Bad Brains, Living Colour, and Fishbone for a super jam at the 2016 Festival. Will they play “Cult of Personality” “Everyday Sunshine” and “I Against I?” Probably. We're pretty psyched. But here are 12 deep cuts that rarely get brought out that we're hoping to hear too.

By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK contributor

1. Living Colour – A? Of When

Frontman Corey Glover delivers the most…


Added by Sound Check on April 26, 2016 at 12:30pm — 1 Comment

NEW MUSIC: South London 'gangster-folk' duo AOSOON drop refreshing and totally original track “City”

AOSOON describe themselves as ‘Gangster Folk’, so let’s run with that! Somewhere between 90s R&B and easy listen jazz, lies their latest track “City”—a mellow groove that’s kinda just doing its own thing. Which completely works! The south London duo has created a rich and progressive sound that feels as effortless and lightweight as a cloud floating by. “City” is refreshing and totally original, check it out down below.



Added by Sound Check on April 25, 2016 at 3:10pm — No Comments

Battle Of The Bands 2016: Win A Spot To Play At AFROPUNK Brooklyn!

Think you've got what it takes to play the big stage at AFROPUNK BROOKLYN 2016? Here's your shot!


The online contest will start in May but for now you should SIGN UP HERE to receive more information once it's available.…


Added by Sound Check on April 25, 2016 at 9:27am — 1 Comment

NEW MUSIC: SZA Shows Off EDM Chops With Frequent Collaborator Felix Snow

Check out “Lies”, the newest project by singer/songwriter and AFROPUNK Brooklyn alum SZA and regular collaborator, Felix Snow. “Lies” is an energetic, club-ready anthem of dance-pop and R&B undertones. It also shows off a totally different side of SZA’s singin’ chops as a belt-y dance diva. “This song is just something where the style was something I wanted to hear her sing on. Her stuff is usually more chill and laid back and I wanted her to go in on something uptempo,…


Added by Sound Check on April 22, 2016 at 5:15pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Groove To Neo-Soul Rocker Divinity Roxx's New LP “I’m Possible”

"I’m Possible" is a new LP from neo-soul hip-hop artist Divinity Roxx. The project is 12 tracks deep, meaning there’s ample space for the singer to show off the range of her musical sensibilities. From the lyrical jazz riffs, R&B melodies, and her vicious flow, "I’m Possible" is clearly a project bursting with love, passion, and authenticity. Definitely check it out when you get the chance.

By Erin White*, AFROPUNK…

Added by Sound Check on April 22, 2016 at 2:00pm — 1 Comment

VIDEO PREMIERE: Psychedelic-pop singer-songwriter Betty Black drops trippy visual for "Black Car"

Our first premiere of the day comes from New York-based singer-songwriter Betty Black. Her video for single “Black Car” is a trippy world of neon filters, animation, and a flying skull—I’m into it. The mesmerizing visuals are as multi-layered as the song itself. At the risk of boxing Betty into one particular genre (where she doesn’t quite fit), “Black…


Added by Sound Check on April 22, 2016 at 11:30am — No Comments

OP-ED: Advanced Prince Studies: Revisiting 10 Overlooked Prince Masterpieces #SoundCheck

Dearly beloved We are gathered here today 2 get through this thing called life

I didn't cry when Bowie died. I'd heard rumors that he'd been sick for a while. So his late-career victory lap always seemed like it was on borrowed time. I didn't even tear up when I first got the news that Prince had died. It wasn't until I was standing in line getting coffee a few hours later, and the opening strains of “Purple Rain” came…


Added by Sound Check on April 22, 2016 at 10:30am — 5 Comments

NEW MUSIC: Toronto-based musician T i K ▲ mesmerizes with experimental neo-soul EP "Some Things Are Better Left"

New release from Toronto-based musician T i K ▲ with her newest album “Some Things Are Better Left”! You might remember her from a video premiere, we did last month, of her video “TENFOLD”. Staying true to the themes established with "TENFOLD", the album's opening track, T i K ▲ gives us a…


Added by Sound Check on April 21, 2016 at 6:00pm — No Comments

INTERVIEW: Experimental soul singer Gallant drops new album ‘Ology’ and chats with Ayara Pommells

Following the release of his 2014 Zebra EP, the industry has been eagerly awaiting his next project. Last week, AFROPUNK had the pleasure of speaking with 24-year-old rising R&B star, Gallant a few days before the release of his new album, 'Ology', which is already being hailed by music critics as a masterpiece. Between his soulful voice, abstract soundscapes and deeply introspective songwriting abilities, Gallant's appeal is far reaching.

If an…


Added by Sound Check on April 21, 2016 at 5:30pm — No Comments

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