New this week / Singles in review

Lauryn Hill - Black Rage (Sketch)

The actress and musician Lauryn Hill only has one album under her belt, but that hasn't stopped her from releasing the odd single now and then. “Black Rage (Sketch)” is a slow burning, RN'B track, dripping with her trademark boldness.

While it borrows the melody from “My Favourite Things,” a song from The Sound of Music soundtrack, the subject matter at hand is not quite the same. Hill tackles issues deeply entrenched in her past and present society, regarding race and injustice. Her vocal performance is mesmerising and the production is rich and gritty.

Pharmakon - Body Betrays Itself

Pharmakon is Margaret Chardiet, a noise artist from Brooklyn, USA. After her debut album from last year, Abandon, Chardiet is set to release her second album, Bestial Burden, on Sacred Bones records. “Body Betrays Itself” is the record's first single and gives a good glimpse of what to expect.

The track is a writhing soundscape of deep, ominous synth and booming drums. Something you would include in a post-apocalyptic soundtrack or your next barbecue, perhaps. Chardiet's voice is venomous, and raw; a visceral and engaging track that kind of sounds like hell.

Caribou - Our Love

“Our Love” is the second single from Dan Snaith's project Caribou. It is from the upcoming album of the same name and will be the Canadian musician's fifth to date, following the stellar Swim from 2010.

“Our Love” is a house-influenced, electronic-trance track. The rhythm is hypnotic; the backing vocal hook vibrates up and down and conjures an almost otherworldly euphoria. It's definitely a song for standing under the neon lights in the early hours of the morning.

Electric Wizard - Sadiowitch

Hailing from Dorset, England, Electric Wizard are one of the most renowned doom metal bands around, known for their incorporation of stoner rock as well as sludge. Four years removed from their seventh studio album, Black Masses, the band return with “Sadiowitch,” the single to their cheerfully titled upcoming album, Time To Die?.

The track is a propulsive, nightmarish acid trip. More psychedelic, classic Black Sabbath than heavy doom. Jus Oborn's trademark sneer is on top form.

Vince Staples - Blue Suede

At present, Vince Staples is probably best known as the guest MC on Earl Sweatshirt's track “Hive.” The 21-year-old Long Beach rapper has been busy, however, preparing his debut album set to be released on Def Jam records.

“Blue Suede” is the lead single from his upcoming album titled, Hell Can Wait. The track is built over a dark, almost terrifying, landscape of blaring synths and grimy beats, resembling a police siren, booming out across a dark, cold neighbourhood. “All I wanted was them Jordans with the blue suede in them.”
This article first appeared in Issue 21, 2014.
Posted 5:55pm Sunday 31st August 2014 by Adrian Ng.