Welcome to the BroBible New Music Round-Up, where we see what new music has been released this week and going to go out on a limb and say that Drake is a Raptors’ fan. For more follow me on Twitter: @ryanoconnell79
This Week’s Playlist
With summer nearly upon us and talk of summer jams in the air (more on that later,) I thought we’d take some time to look back fondly at the summer of 2018 and the songs that defined that summer.
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Thomas Rhett Center Point Road
There’s something about warm weather and driving with the windows down and drinking beers outside that lends itself to country music. Maybe it’s scientific; hard to say. This could also be just me, as I’m not typically a country music person. Sure I can get down with “Wagon Wheel” regardless of the weather, but who can’t. That song is damn near perfect.
So with that all being said, I felt it was only right to kick things off with some country music this week, specifically the new album from Thomas Rhett, Center Point Road.
In country circles, Rhett’s a big deal. He’s not Luke Bryan big, but it seems like he’s getting there. This new album is Rhett’s fourth and for some artists, that fourth album is a leap album, something that could be the case for Mr. Thomas Rhett.
Center Point Road is his first new album since 2017’s Life Changes, although taking a quick glance at Spotify and there are one, two, three versions of the album available. Three versions. I thought we all agreed two versions of an album was the cut off?
Rhett makes things personal on the new album, with Center Point Road being the road he grew up on in Tennessee from age six to 21 when his dad, country singer Rhett Akins, moved the family to Nashville.
Those years spent on old CP Road drive the bulk of what Rhett was looking to capture on the album, with him saying that “was a big chunk of my life that I made neighborhood friends, started playing sports, started dating girls. There were a lot of things that happened for the first time there. It’s really cool to dive back into your 13- or 15-year-old self and try to derive song ideas from that.”
If there’s not at least one song about dealing with acne, then I’ll be very upset.
Rhett kicks off a summer tour on June 7th in Nashville.
Cardi B “Press”
Clear the lane, Cardi’s coming through.
New Music Round-Up’s personal President of the United States dropped a new single, “Press,” at the strike of Midnight Thursday, announcing it with an Instagram post that was impossible not to take notice of. Just stop for a minute and take a second look at that photo again. It’s amazing.
And no, it’s not just amazing because of how fantastic Cardi looks. That definitely helps though.
Clocking in at just over two minutes, the track is assaulting and abrasive. If you haven’t realized that Cardi isn’t one to eff around by now, then I don’t know what you’ve been doing.
As with her last single, “Money,” it doesn’t appear as if the track is part of something more, which makes sense seeing as how Cardi is currently her first film role, starring along side Constance Wu in Hustlers.
Lee “Scratch” Perry Rainford
Lee “Scratch” Perry might never stop dropping records. My dude was born in 1936 and is still kicking.
Rainford is the reggae/dub legend’s latest album, a collaboration of sorts with producer Adrian Sherwood, who first worked with Perry back in the 1980’s. It was Sherwood who rescued Perry from a drifting period, when in 1987 he teamed up with Perry for the album Time Boom X De Devil Dead.
Sherwood, an accomplished producer in his own right, sees Rainford as a similar collaboration to the one between Rick Rubin and Johnny Cash that produced a trio of landmark Cash albums late in the singer’s life.
I don’t need to remind you that the summer is almost here and with that being the case, a new Perry album is pretty on point.
Freddie Gibbs & Madlib “Crime Pays”
An album from these two titans on industry has been rumored for so long it was approaching urban myth status, something kids would talk about as they smoke doobs around the fire pit.
It’s a rumor no more, though.
On Thursday, the duo announced the release date for Bandana (June 28,) as well as dropped a new single from the album, “Crime Pays.” I guess now kids can spend their time talking about whether or not this Rihanna/reggae album will ever happen.
Bandana is bringing some heat in terms of guest spots, with Black Thought of The Roots, Pusha-T, Killer Mike of Run the Jewels and Yasiin Bey all set to appear. In 2018, Madlib hinted that he was working on a new Black Star album with Bey and Talib Kweli.
Let’s hope that becomes a reality too.
JR JR Invocations/Conversations
Once known as Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. and now known as JR JR, the indie/electronic/pop duo had been doing battle with their record label, Warner Bros., for the past few years. Joshua Epstein and Daniel Zott of JR JR recorded an album in 2016, but the label deemed it “too dark” and refused to release it. Thus started a feud between the two parties, with JR JR trying to get out of their contract with the label.
Aside from flight reservations and gym memberships, there’s probably nothing harder in this world to cut loose from than a record contract.
Eventually the duo was able to break free (both band members owe the label their first born son) and were able to release Invocations/Conversations on their own.
Invocations is the album Warner Bros rejected and Conversations is the album the group recorded in between ditching Warner Bros and starting their own label.
JR JR really started to get folks attention right before the label dispute with their song, “Gone.” The things that made that song so infectious – an upbeat vibe, melodies and a general sense of enjoyment, are largely there on Conversations. As for Invocations, well, Warner Bros may have been onto something.
It goes without saying that America isn’t the easiest place to live if you’re an immigrant these days. I’m not here to get into why that is, though. You’ll have to check out my politics podcast American Dumpster Fire for that.
What I am here to get into is the new album by Sinkane, a group led by Ahmed Gallab, an immigrant from Sudan via London. On Dépaysé, Gallab looks to explore what it means to be an immigrant in Trump’s album. The album’s title “is a French word that basically means ‘to be removed from one’s habitual surroundings,” Gallab said in a statement.
Yet if you’re thinking that given the subject matter, the album was going to be somewhat of a slog, you don’t know Sinkane. Beneath the heavy lyrics and topics is a carnival of joyful sounds, ranging from reggae to world music to funk.
Elsewhere in Music…
So Like, Woodstock 50 is Back On?
I DON’T KNOW! NO ONE KNOWS!
We should probably just stop asking and spend our time thinking about something else.
Anyone watching Chernobyl?
Our Feel Good Story of the Week
A couple of years ago, Drew Daniels, his lady friend and newborn baby left Philadelphia behind to start a new life in Hawaii. It’s essentially something everyone not living in Hawaii dreams of doing.
And things were going pretty well for them. In the fall of 2015, they broke ground on a new house in the upper Kapoho area of Puna. Eventually they were “off the grid,” according to Daniels, who said that they “lived on solar power and water catchment like many people in the area do. We had really just begun cultivating a food forest with our community when the eruption occurred.”
The eruption in question was the 2018 lower Puna eruption, a truly devastating natural disaster that wiped out homes and communities, with total damage having been estimated to cost upwards of $800 million. Lava ran down streets and through communities for weeks after the eruption and earthquake occurred.
Daniels and his family lost everything.
Since then, they have been forced to move five times, have seen their friends move away and relationships fall apart. The world around them, one they had been worked hard to make their own, had changed dramatically, leaving them to wonder what was next.
One way Daniels channeled his frustrations was through music. A singer and guitarist, Daniels had just finished a song called “Our New Life” the day before they lost their home, which happened a year ago today.
To mark the anniversary, as well as celebrate the resilience of those around him, Daniels has released “Get Back Up,” a song that features a choir of nearly 50 people who responded when Daniels reached out to people, asking them to contribute. It features people “from Germany, Argentina, Mali, Puerto Rico and all over the United States.”
You can learn more about Daniels and his family via his Facebook page. Daniels plans to release an album, Fertility From Fire, later this summer.
This Week in Yeah, Probably
Time to Start Talking Summer Jams!
Memorial Day Weekend is behind us, days are getting longer and some of us lucky bastards already have our first sunburn. The summer of 2019 is nearly upon us!
So let’s start talking summer jams.
Now of course it’s early and we’d be foolish to crown a song the Summer Jam of 2019 now. This isn’t amateur hour for God’s sake. But I do think we can start calling out some early favorites.
“Old Town Road” Lil Nas X feat. Billy Ray Cyrus
“Sucker” Jonas Brothers
“I Don’t Care” Ed Sheeran/Justin Bieber
“Bad Guy” Billie Ellish
“Truth Hurts” Lizzo
“If I Can’t Have You” Shawn Mendes
“Doin’ Time” Lana Del Rey
BUT IT’S EARLY, SO SETTLE THE EFF DOWN.
There’s still plenty of time for Rihanna to drop something. And don’t sleep on Diplo or any rock acts. Remember a year or so ago when “Feel It Still” by Portugal. The Man made a serious run?
For more, check out this excellent breakdown of contenders from The Ringer.
Let’s see how things in a few weeks and go from there.
And We’ll End Here
See you next week!