Roman GianArthur – “I-69” Mar12

Roman GianArthur – “I-69”...

Below is the tweet from my personal unrequited crush, Janelle Monae, gushing about her fellow Wondaland artist, Roman GianArthur. I was instantly impressed by this dude when he opened for Janelle Monae in LA, and he didn’t mush me in the face disparaging my height. Yes go #Roman! http://t.co/tkyYytA0cB — Janelle Monae (@JanelleMonae) March 10, 2014 Thank you to McDonal…errr The Boombox for the live venue and video of the “I-69” performance. And check out the other songs Roman sang like “Contrition.” Dem ladies are screamin’ for...

Frank Ocean + Mick Jones + Paul Simonon – “Hero” (prod. by Diplo) Mar12

Frank Ocean + Mick Jones + Paul Simonon – “Hero” (prod. by Diplo)...

I’m a rap dude, so excuse for not knowing about The Clash. I may know some of their songs, but in 2014 here they are providing a nice soundbed for Frank to croon over and Diplo to tweak later. Mick Jones & Paul Simonon (The Clash) and Diplo have surprisingly collaborated on an original song titled “Hero.” The offering has been made available courtesy of Coverse’s ongoing Three Artists, One Song series, and experiments between a dash of the ’60s and a modern day inclusion of instrumentation, along with additional vocals arriving from the West Los Angeles Children’s Choir. (OnSmash/Converse Music) BTS Video...

SZA – “Babylon” Mar12

SZA – “Babylon”...

It’s like FKA Twigs musically, but SZA’s voice is richer and stronger. The themes of desire and despair remain the same. Honestly, the song just keeps putting me to sleep. I believe it’s good, just not for me right now. Yawn....

Janelle Monáe – “What Is Love” Mar04

Janelle Monáe – “What Is Love”...

You know what I didn’t like was Janelle’s half-hearted Cover Girl-sponsored cover of Robert Palmer’s “Simply Irresistable.” Thankfully, she follows that up with the full version of her soundtrack song for Rio 2. Granted I fully expected another throwaway track, but this is actually pretty lively. Classic @JanelleMonae. "What Is Love," from the Rio 2 Soundtrack: http://t.co/Crox4GcQSa Proceed to dance around your office. — I’ll Take You There (@NPRandB) March 4,...

Aloe Blacc – “The Man” (video) Mar03

Aloe Blacc – “The Man” (video)...

I felt there wasn’t enough product placement in Aloe Blacc’s video for his gigantic single, “The Man.”...

Pharrell Williams feat. Daft Punk – “Gust of Wind” Feb28

Pharrell Williams feat. Daft Punk – “Gust of Wind”...

The second major single leaked from Pharrell’s G I R L album today is “Gust of Wind,” a mid-tempo burner. This is the song you can dance to. Not just the young folks, I’m talking about the older folks…the 2-steppers…the shoulder swayers…the nervous-but-still-asked-the-girl-to-dance dudes. A breezy, string-filled comfort song for the masses. This is quality pop R&B music with a heaping spoonful of Daft Punk robotics. Fuck with this! (Verge/hat tip to @tedthevillain)...

Pharrell Williams feat. Justin Timberlake – “Brand New” Feb28

Pharrell Williams feat. Justin Timberlake – “Brand New”...

Pharrell Williams stays winning another uptempo collaboration with Timberlake. It is impossible to not tap your foot while listening to this track. If “Happy” is the record you listen to walking around the cold city, then “Brand New” is the pep talk to get you up for the day or motivate you through a tough situation. Word is that this was a reference track for Justin’s 20/20 Experience. Word. (2dopeboyz/Fuck AllHipHop.com/hat tip to Samson)...

Mar – “A Simple Go”...

For an R&B track made by an artist known for employing 4×4 dance beats from an EDM label, “A Simple Go” by Mar is refreshing burst of sublime energy. His label, Bad Manor is releasing his latest two singles as an EP, Form. Like all his music, Mar is not beholden to one prescribed style. He pulls from both the electronic and soul genres to make his own unique creation. BTW, the lady up top is from his website. I found pictures of the dude, but…man, this music is good!...

Anthony Valadez feat. Miles Bonny – “Searching For” Feb27

Anthony Valadez feat. Miles Bonny – “Searching For”...

You know from the first notes from the Rhodes organ that Anthony Valadez’s “Searching For” is precisely what you’ve been looking for. At least I know it for me. Miles Bonny starts crooning, the bass line kicks in, the trumpet adeptly crawls into the groove, and then, is that(?), double time hi-hats. The quavering strings complete the ensemble. And just when the song is at full bloom, it ends. Keep mashing that play button. This is 21st century rare grooves. This is the music neo-soul promised us but delivered instead headwraps and frustration. Fuck with Vala! Cop the album, In Search Of…, on March 18th from Plug Research. (Okayplayer/photo credit: Anthony Valadez) BONUS...

Amerigo Gazaway – Yasiin Gaye: The Departure (Side One) Feb26

Amerigo Gazaway – Yasiin Gaye: The Departure (Side One)...

Unlike my contemporaries I do not like Amerigo Gazaway’s Yasiin Gaye. First of all, I hate the name. Second, I hate his goofy website asking about modern browsers. Dude, I’m on fucking Chrome, not IE6. Overproduced. Derivative. Disjointed. Ill-mastered. For every great track like “I Want You ‘Til The Summertime” which seamlessly integrate Mos and Marvin, there are disasters like “Ms. Fat Booty,” “Peculiar Mathematics,” and “Two Words” where Gazaway forces samples and rhythms into awkward positions. Thankfully missing is the foul chimera “Anna’s Love Song” which culled Mos Def from his Bush Babees day and the darkest days of Marvin Gaye. Gazaway knows his music (son of Phish’s trumpeter, Gary “El Buho” Gazaway) and knows how to deconstruct and reconstruct music, but this shit ain’t Legos. Maybe because the source material of Yasiin Gaye fit too neatly together, Gazaway seems to force ideas or add unnecessary conflict to the music. Bizarre Tribe (errr RIP) and Fela Soul were better attempts at Black music alchemy; Yasiin Gaye is the result of a producer unable to grasp the brass ring. (I’m giving credit to Ebony — great job proofreading smh — even though I’ve known about this shit show for weeks. And my FB timeline is blowing up about this mashup.) PS: Ping Teddie for a counteropinion. I’m pretty sure he loves...

Kenny Dope and Raheem DeVaughn feat. Rhymefest – “Final Call” Feb18

Kenny Dope and Raheem DeVaughn feat. Rhymefest – “Final Call”...

Kenny Dope and Raheem DeVaughn team up with former alderman candidate and Grammy winner, Rhymefest, on a track celebrating Black pride and the upcoming Saviours’ Day. @2dopeposts <<< Check It >>> FINAL CALL – KENNY DOPE, @raheemdevaughn , FT.@rhymefest (Official Video): http://t.co/VLqPoypELn via @youtube — Kenny Dope (@Kdope50) February 18,...

Illangelo and Rochelle Jordan – “What The Fuss” Feb18

Illangelo and Rochelle Jordan – “What The Fuss”...

Every article about Illangelo mentions his previous production relationship with The Weeknd. Sounds like a hard way for a man to break away from his past and move into the future, but for our site it’s a great way for the search engine robots to find us faster. Hooray for SEO! All kidding aside, this beat is not for play. Rochelle Jordan coos and slides effortlessly through Illangelo’s hazy, elastic production. This is what R&B music should become: sexy and future forward. Toronto keeps delivering....