... the other Black experience

Sound Check's Blog – November 2016 Archive (40)

NEW MUSIC: Stream blues band Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears announce 4th album with classically soulful single ‘PTP’

Need to be transported to another time and place? Well look no further than blues band Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears. With a name like that, do you expect anything but soul and sweetness? Because that’s exactly what they’re giving you. In new jam ‘PTP,’ lead singer Black Joe rivals the likes of BB King with his raspy tenor, melting over the thick, full-bodied guitar riffs and constant crashing of cymbals and toms. This joint is the perfect treat to entice fans for…


Added by Sound Check on November 30, 2016 at 11:34am — No Comments

Meshell Ndegeocello creates theater piece inspired by James Baldwin

The ingenious singer and bassist Meshell Ndegeocello has taken her love for all things creative and made a theater piece for the ages. As a revival of sorts, Meshell is using James Baldwin’s “The Fire Next Time” as the foundation for a conversation about the Black body, queer identity, and freedom. The piece entitled, “Can I Get a Witness? The Gospel of James Baldwin” comes to Harlem Stage December 7-11, staged as a church service, employing music, sermon, text, images, and… Continue

Added by Sound Check on November 30, 2016 at 11:27am — 1 Comment

NEW MUSIC: Chill Out To The Neo-Soul Vibes Of Jus and Muhsinah's “Unconventional” #SoundCheck

Over a decidedly retro feel, singer Muhsinah's vocals float and sting. “I get plenty prospects / But I don't really call them / I mean why should I?” Her unconventional love songs boast an unconventional love on “Unconventional” and “Everything You Want.” And though unconventional, the vocals and Jus' production on both tracks are certainly timeless; shades of Erykah Badu and Native Tongues. The EP is rounded out with an instrumental of “Unconventional” and an…


Added by Sound Check on November 29, 2016 at 1:20pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stream Electro Soul Singer Nosizwe's Impressive Debut 'In Fragments' Produced By Georgia Anne Muldrow #SoundCheck

Nosizwe burst onto our radar 2 years ago with a series of promising singles, and with her debut full length In Fragments, she's officially arrived. The electro soul singer's record teems with bold ideas, powerful vocals, and lush arrangements that demand re-listening. From the enigmatic opening to “Songs From Nosizwe” a glitchy beat takes over merging the all-too-human vocals with a post-modern electronic jitter, for something simultaneously chill and unsettling.…


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

VIDEO PREMIERE: Stream Zurich songstress Brandy Butler’s otherworldly visual for her enchanting single ‘Spell’

Everybody feels someone else’s magic sometimes. So when you press play on ‘Spell’ by Brandy Butler, let the magic wash over you and wrap you in its sweet embrace, but only if you’re willing to fall in deep. Butler, a Zurich-based, Pennsylvania bred jazz singer, is borrowing from electronic, folk and soul vibes in her song ‘Spell,’ casting a couple of her own in the process. The video, which was crafted by a team consisting of director Nicole Pfister, assistant director…


Added by Sound Check on November 29, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Elle Winston Pushes Her Voice To New Heights On The Indie Funk Single “Heavy Now” #SoundCheck

“These bills ain't paying theirselves / But I swear I wish they would” Elle Winston sings on her latest single, “Heavy Now.” Voicing her frustration over being mistreated and exploited, Elle's powerful voice rings out while the band lays down some serious grooves. The song comes from her forthcoming record, and strips out the electronic neo-soul flourishes that adorned her previous recordings in favor of tight instrumental backing. The change suits Elle Winston well, with…


Added by Sound Check on November 28, 2016 at 5:00pm — No Comments

PREMIERE: NYC soul singer Leandra McNair is feeling “Lucky” in love in new single from forthcoming EP

With idols like Stevie Wonder, Janelle Monae, and Lauryn Hill, how could Leandra McNair lose? In her new single “Lucky,” she’s reflecting on love and all its honeyed sweetness. Leandra said, "This song is about feeling lucky to have such a great love in your life and how they swept you off your feet and consumed you with so much love.” Leandra’s been described as contemporary, alternative soul with strong hip-hop influences and a distinct jazz background, but in this jam…


Added by Sound Check on November 28, 2016 at 11:20am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: CX KIDTRONIK Returns With His Industrial Punk Band Sewer Rats' 'EP 1' #SoundCheck

Always outspoken, always over the top, CX KIDTRONIK never does anything halfway. His latest record with Sewer Rats finds the beatmaker, vocalist, and fetish producer bridging the gap between his work with Atari Teenage Riot and Trent Reznor. It's blistering industrial punk that only barely takes itself seriously, and features a song-length commercial for CX's fetish site. Because why the fuck not? The EP's single “Drunk Dad” skewers the Walmart-Americans who put a…


Added by Sound Check on November 23, 2016 at 12:22pm — No Comments

Meet Diamond Rowe of Tetrarch, the guitarist repping for Black women making metal

Black women and punk music go as far back as punk music itself. Those untold stories are part of the reason why AFROPUNK exists, and telling these stories is part of our mission. We asked Diamond Rowe about her experience being a Black woman in a metal band, and here’s what she had to say! “As far as my thoughts about being an African American female in a metal band - I honestly immensely enjoy it! A lot of friends of mine that are minorities speak a lot about being…


Added by Sound Check on November 22, 2016 at 5:31pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: East London alt-rockers Sonitus balance introspection and intensity in new EP “Kleptocracy”

Sonitus has finally released their EP “Kleptocracy,” a 7-track journey through their collective imagination. “Kleptocracy” is a succinct offering, brief but brimming with realized potential, searing honesty, artful lyrics, and an overall vibe of intimacy. Led by the vocals of singers Russell Balogun and Dein Moore, Sonitus is reminiscent of the worldly pop-rock of of the 2000s, with more aggression and urgency behind each of the lyrics and even more intensity behind the…


Added by Sound Check on November 18, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: AFROPUNK alum and R&B/soulstress Jorja Smith returns with two new, vibrant tracks from her ‘Project 11’ EP

AFROPUNK London alum Jorja Smith is one of my favorite new talents of 2016. A follow up to this year’s earlier tracks, “Blue Lights” and “Where DId I Go?”, the British beauty just released two singles, “Carry Me Home” and “Imperfect Circle”. The first, a spoken word piece that evolves into a staggering R&B/soul ballad. Similar to “Blue Lights”, “Imperfect Circle” is an observational track that calls out the many contradictions, inequalities, and ethically questionable…


Added by Sound Check on November 18, 2016 at 11:52am — 2 Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stream Childish Gambino’s funky, soulful new single “Redbone”

HOLY SHIT. GAMBINO IS NOT PLAYING WITH YALL. Funkadelic, Prince, Bilal, all the vibes and all the instrumentation and oh my goodness, this new track “Redbone” has me floored. The funk is upon us, with all of the soul of a thousand George Clinton braids swaying to the rhythm of the bass. I’m not ready for this album, but it needs to get here, because I’m currently abusing the replay button and I think you will too. Stream “Redbone” by Childish Gambino below. …


Added by Sound Check on November 18, 2016 at 10:36am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Bodega Dream Mix Hip-Hop, Indie Rock and Politically Charged Lyrics On The Impressive 'EP 2' #SoundCheck

Life and death loom large on Bodega Dream's appropriately titled 2nd EP, EP 2. The band balances indie rock and hip-hop with depth and passion over 4 tracks. Opening with the struggle against hopelessness anthem of “Polaroids,” frontman Darion Ray Kelley jumps back and forth between frustration and a repeated refrain to “hold on, hold on.” That frustration curdles into exhaustion on “New York Times.”

The apocalypse is coming, “The New York Times said the raging fire will…


Added by Sound Check on November 18, 2016 at 10:00am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Tropical funk/R&B artist blAck pArty serves up sunny “Sweet Mango” EP

Arkansas native and now Los Angeles based artist Black Party recently released his new EP Mango. With the surprising tweet from Childish Gambino introducing his name he is now an artist you must get acquainted with. If you haven’t taken a listen to his new EP, you should. The EP has gracefully reminded us that R&B is still in existence. From his tasteful production and his mesmerizing vocals, he will capture and keep your attention. Make sure to check him…


Added by Sound Check on November 16, 2016 at 6:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Nuclear Garden Create A Score For A Horror Film That Hasn't Been Made Yet On Their New Beat Tape 'The Night of the Phantasm' #SoundCheck

Just in time for things to get dark (I mean that luminescently and also figuratively, like about society and shit), New Jersey collective Nuclear Garden debuts their latest mixtape Night of the Phantasm. It mixes hip-hop instrumentals, sound collages, stray verses, and horror scores for something that plays like a really dark dream. Like any beat tape, there are some experiments that work and some that don't, but the moments that do showcase some real talent behind…


Added by Sound Check on November 16, 2016 at 3:02pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stream the phenomenal Willow Smith’s post-election ballad “November 9th”

Willow Smith has been coming alive in the past year or so and this new offering is a perfect example of the young phenom’s maturation since the days of “Whip My Hair.” In the track “November 9th,” Willow sings to the downtrodden and dismayed, encouraging all of us to look to the future with hopeful eyes rather than with the sadness and anger that permeate social media and our communities. Although these emotions are justified, she hopes to cradle us in a “transcendental…


Added by Sound Check on November 16, 2016 at 1:47pm — 1 Comment

NEW MUSIC: Stream soul singer CS Armstrong’s brilliant cover of Bobby Blue Bland’s “Ain’t No Love”

The blues are one of the most underrated genres of music. Among the forefathers, Bobby Blue Bland stands tall amidst giants, because of his profound detail to the emotional content in his lyrics. CS Armstrong had huge shoes to fill with this cover, a song that many have attempted, but few have truly conquered. But Armstrong has conquered. From the electrifying horn section to the fully fleshed choir arrangement all the way down to the booming tenor of CS Armstrong’s own voice,… Continue

Added by Sound Check on November 16, 2016 at 9:30am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stream teen punk rock band Harsh Crowd’s second EP “Better”

What’s better than full grown adults playing indie rock? Teenagers. Why? Because there’s really no replacement for youth in the world of music. Fresh voices, fresh thoughts, the angst and emotions and rawness of adolescence are brimming in Harsh Crowd’s new EP “Better.” Harsh Crowd is comprised of four 14-year old teenage girls Dea Brogaard-Thompson (guitar), Willow Bennison (vocals), Lena Faske ( drums) and Rihana Abdulrashid-Davis (Bass), who met while they were at Willie…


Added by Sound Check on November 15, 2016 at 12:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Cali-born R&B songstress Amare Symone shines in her vulnerability in new EP “GlassWindows”

Breaking down the barriers that hold us back is easy when you’re identifying the external forces keeping you from what you want and where you want to be. Although looking within is much more difficult, it’s that much more rewarding. For Amare Symone, the vulnerability she was able to have with herself is what produced her new EP, “GlassWindows” and is what she credits as one of her muses during this creative journey. With songs full of yearning for self-love and love from…


Added by Sound Check on November 14, 2016 at 3:19pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Kevin Abstract's new tracks are the music we need right now in the face of bigotry #SoundCheck

Kevin Abstract's been on the rise since his 2014 mixtape MTV1987. His latest, American Boyfriend is set to drop November 18th, and the performer just unveiled 2 tracks from it, the addictive “Yellow,” and the identity politics anthem “Miserable America.” Opening with the lines “I just want help if, my best friend's racist / My mother's homophobic, I'm stuck in the closet / I'm still claustrophobic, I just wanna know shit / Well we all love Young Thug,” Kevin Abstract throws…


Added by Sound Check on November 11, 2016 at 4:00pm — No Comments

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