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Sound Check's Blog – December 2016 Archive (33)

Top 10 Songs of 2016 - AFROPUNK

There are some songs that dig their way into your ear canal and demand attention. Songs that in 3 minutes and change can pull out something deep in your soul and recontextualize the way you experience the world. And then again, some songs just have a killer beat and an unforgettable hook. But every year, a handful of songs have the audacity to do both.

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Added by Sound Check on December 21, 2016 at 8:30pm — No Comments

Top 10 Albums of 2016 - AFROPUNK

They say the arts flourish in times of great turmoil, so at least there's that. On just about every level, 2016 has been a pretty fucked up year. But it's also seen perennially promising artists like Solange, Childish Gambino, and Blood Orange release timeless and timely albums that flirt with perfection. It's seen artists across the underground from BLXPLTN to Abdu Ali to Burn produce powerful uncompromising soundtracks to the revolution. Resistance and resilience…


Added by Sound Check on December 20, 2016 at 4:00pm — No Comments

AFROPUNK alum Mykki Blanco announces North American Tour with fellow alum Cakes Da Killa

Your body is not ready for the realness of “The Stunt Queen Tour.” Mykki Blanco & Cakes Da Killa are here to snatch your edges, give you life and possibly make you spontaneously combust. With 30 cities secured and your wig destined to be off by the end of the night, all we can do is wait for these tickets to drop with the same anticipation that you get knowing bae is on their way with some hot food. Because this tour is looking all kinds of delicious. Peep the tour…


Added by Sound Check on December 20, 2016 at 10:21am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Mick Jenkins & Kaytranada collab on bouncy 'Aurora Borealis'

When Mick Jenkins & Kaytranada connect on a track, there’s no end to how fly the end result can be. The unofficial duo with all the groove have combined for several jams in the past 2 years and new single ‘Aurora Borealis’ might just top the list. Significantly more downtempo than we’re accustomed to hearing from the twosome, but nevertheless, a groovy experience with thoughtful raspiness from the rapper steeped in the lyricism he’s come to be known for. If you need a…


Added by Sound Check on December 19, 2016 at 11:23am — No Comments

George Clinton on Childish Gambino's album: "I'm proud that he's into the funk"!

There’s nothing like the passing of the torch, especially in music. George Clinton of Parliament and Funkadelic gives high praise to Childish Gambino following his latest album, “Awaken, My Love!” whose take on funk is giving the next generation of p-funkers something to aspire to. Clinton says, “I’m proud that he’s into the funk,” acknowledging the influence that he’s had on the music, as well as the contributions that Prince made to inspiring the direction Gambino took in…


Added by Sound Check on December 19, 2016 at 9:49am — No Comments

PREMIERE: Electronic hip hop duo Young Futura is all mellow vibes and gorgeous melodies in debut EP “Patience”

The future is here and Young Futura is the duo ushering it in. Washington DC’s Beau Young Prince & French producer Futura teamed up to create a whole new sound, pushing the bounds of hip hop, R&B and electronic music for the sake of moving the culture forward and bending genres towards beautiful. Beau Young Prince is a talented rapper who opened for the likes of Wale, The Cool Kids, Danny Brown, and Ryan Hemsworth. Futura has multi-platinum track record boasts work…


Added by Sound Check on December 16, 2016 at 11:08am — No Comments

Should we boycott our fave artists when their actions are problematic?

As I scrolled through Twitter while blasting Late Registration through my headphones, I came across images of a blonde haired Kanye West side by side with Donald Trump. All I could do was sigh. I can’t say that I was shocked because nothing Kanye does is really shocking anymore. I was, however, disappointed.

How could the same man who had given us classics such as Heard ‘Em Say and Jesus Walks have fallen so low? From aimless speeches to Twitter rants, it’s safe…


Added by Sound Check on December 16, 2016 at 10:30am — 1 Comment

NEW MUSIC: Kid Cudi’s album featuring Andre 3000, Willow Smith & Pharrell Williams is for the underdog in all of us

Everybody loves an underdog and Kid Cudi fits the bill. The 32-year old rapper and all around trailblazer took a hiatus from music recently to check himself into rehab to get help with the depression he’s been suffering with since his adolescence. But that hasn’t stopped him from coming back to music with a vengeance. “Passion, Pain, and Demon Slayin’” is the perfect name for his comeback album. Through all of the obstacles, he’s persevered and persisted, and with the help…


Added by Sound Check on December 16, 2016 at 10:14am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Montreal's Dear Denizen Crafts Intense Introspective Indie Rock On Their Latest EP 'Now Here' #SoundCheck

Introspective atmospheric and full of questions, Montreal's Dear Denizen makes the kind of moody indie rock that defies easy categorization. Songs like “Wanderlust” ride a slow build to a triumphant chorus, for a song that spans worlds in its 3 minute run. On “Monster Tamer,” singer Ngabonziza Kiroko explores the darker corners of his soul with the album's biggest hook, declaring “things I want are never really good for me.” Massive trumpets swell and explode. The…


Added by Sound Check on December 15, 2016 at 3:56pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Guyanese-Israeli punk trio Generals of Monrovia get political in new single “You Bring This On”

Political dialogue has always found an open home in punk, but generally it’s reserved for the hardcore learning subgenres. Guyanese-Israeli pop punk trio Generals of Monrovia are trying to change that. Based in Austin, Texas, the band is comprised of General Sokah on lead vocals and guitar, General 55 on bass and backing vocals and General Motors on drums. The overall theme of the band is a homage to the West African country Liberia, and the almost comical use of General…


Added by Sound Check on December 15, 2016 at 11:02am — No Comments

Heavy metal artist Sidney Black is bringing a grotesque aesthetic to even grimmer sounds

There are few genres of music that balance the intensity and humanity of the grotesque quite like heavy metal and punk rock, but Sidney Black is doing just that. The hip hop leaning heavy metal rocker is creating visuals that invoke the horrorcore, with an undead aesthetic pervading his visuals. The music is metal hip hop, an amalgamation of the ferocious cadence found in the concrete jungle and the raw rage that finds its home in the pit. With clear influences from Nine Inch… Continue

Added by Sound Check on December 14, 2016 at 12:00pm — 1 Comment

VIDEO PREMIERE: World R&B Group Alsarah & The Nubatones Get Mythical in New Visual for 3roos Elneel

Magical realism is the incorporation of magic into an otherwise realistic fictional story. When you watch the visual for "3roos Elneel" by Alsarah and the Nubatones, dive deep into an underwater world of mystery and fantasy. This song and video represent a mythical departure from usual videos, incorporating inspiration from the Nubian mermaid origin story which the sacrifice of the most beautiful maiden would appease the gods. Though not as tragic, this video depicts the…


Added by Sound Check on December 14, 2016 at 10:43am — No Comments

PREMIERE: Electronica artist Phoenix Martins dives deep into the ethereal in new single, “Glow”

Close your eyes and imagine for a moment a foggy beach, with iridescent pastels floating around you and the soft hum of the waves crashing on you skin. That’s what Phoenix Martins’ latest single from Phoenix Martins brings to mind, transporting listeners to an otherworldly destination filled with vibrancy and color but also set to a slow pace to make you look inward. Phoenix said, “During the production of 'Glow' I had 2 things on my mind the movie 'Coming To America" where…


Added by Sound Check on December 13, 2016 at 10:21am — 1 Comment

VIDEO PREMIERE: Soulful rock songstress Mayaeni evokes a tender vulnerability in new visual for “Break Me”

Breaking down walls is a necessary evil when dealing with intimate relationships. Whether it be our closest friends or those who we’re trying to build romantic partnerships with, it’s sometimes difficult to let go of the walls surrounding the parts of ourselves that aren’t easy to let people see. Singer Mayaeni combines rock and R&B effortlessly in a new song dealing with exactly that, the vulnerability of wanting to express emotions to someone but not knowing exactly how… Continue

Added by Sound Check on December 12, 2016 at 2:30pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Big Freedia says ‘Santa Is A Gay Man’ on insta-classic holiday album, “A Very Big Freedia Christmazz”

It’s the most wonderful time of the year and Big Freedia has the soundtrack for the holidays under wraps! We hope you’ve been naughty this year because this AFROPUNK alum has no use for the niceties in her Christmas album. If you’re ready to twerk your way through this season of giving and commercialism, make sure you’re bumping these five songs for the 99 and 2000s, giving you some bounce for that Christmas soundtrack. Stream “A Very Big Freedia Christmazz” below!… Continue

Added by Sound Check on December 12, 2016 at 11:30am — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Stream electronic R&B crooner Wills’ new synth driven, emphatic single “Weeps”

After the tears dry, you’re gonna need some music to vibe to and electronic R&B crooner Wills is providing the soundscapes for the comeback. In his new single “Weeps,” he brings us into his universe of reverbed synths and huge sounds. The futuristic synths and echoing snare create such a chaotic world so that when Wills’ tenor and falsetto pierce through the clouds, it’s like a beacon of hope. Stream “Weeps” below and immerse yourself in a whole other world for a…


Added by Sound Check on December 9, 2016 at 1:19pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Nashville rapper Joshua strikes political and passionate chords in new mixtape “The Miseducation of Emmett Still”

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but what about the pictures painted with words themselves? Nashvile rapper Joshua is betting that the pictures he’s painting are worth much more than just empty syllables and his story is one that is captivating. From Joshua himself, he was once a promising student, following his father’s footsteps into ministry when he decided to abandon it all for a life of self discovery. An elite education and failed marriage behind him, he…


Added by Sound Check on December 9, 2016 at 1:00pm — No Comments

NEW MUSIC: Atlanta's own punk rockers Pay to Cum drop new rager ‘Moonlight You’

Nothing like hardcore to set the tone for your day. As I pressed play on this track, it teases us with a brief voicemail intro by hip hop legend to complete misdirect the tone. After you hear the beep, full havoc is unleashed, warpspeed drums and heavy guitar and the cathartic vocals of the lead singer. If you weren’t awake and ready to take on the day before this, then you should be well on your way to conquering the world by the time this 3 minute 39 second jam is complete.… Continue

Added by Sound Check on December 9, 2016 at 12:30pm — No Comments

Willow Smith evolves with acoustic-ambient three-track EP ‘Mellifluous’

Just a few days after her big brother released his creepy new visual, 'Fallen", AFROPUNK Alum Willow Smith drops her newest EP, ‘Mellifluous’. The self-produced release is an impressively eclectic mix of acoustic guitar and vocal ambiance that the artist describes as “transcendental lullabies”. Like her previous releases, ‘Mellifluous’ is a young person’s existential and introspective musings set to cosmic soundscapes. Unlike those previous releases, Willow’s ability to…


Added by Sound Check on December 8, 2016 at 3:30pm — 1 Comment

Stream Tuneful TV’s coverage of of AFROPUNK London #TBT

Oh how we miss the AFROPUNK London. So many beautiful Black Europeans getting their lives and it seems like only yesterday that we were vibing hard to Skinny Girl diet, Nova Twins, and the Noisettes. Luckily for us, Tuneful TV covered the festival and got some dope interviews with the attendees, so let’s take a quick journey back in time to feel all that Black love and great vibes again. Stream the videos below!

By T. McLendon,…

Added by Sound Check on December 8, 2016 at 1:10pm — No Comments

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