New Music Friday (on Monday) - 7.13.15

The music industry has moved release day from Tuesday to Friday. As a result, Spotify's New Music Tuesday has become New Music Friday. Because of THAT, Earhole's New Music Tuesday (on Wednesday) is now New Music Friday (on Monday)! Hashtag rebranding. Porter and Darren will help get your week started with our favorite songs from NMF, just a few days later...

"Don't Say No" - Cheat Codes ft. Dresses

Cheat Codes has all over the New Music playlist for weeks. All of their songs were very close to making the NMT(OW)/NMF(OM) cut but never made it until this week. They make it because of the excellent Dresses feature.

I love Dresses. The indie pop duo from Portland created some incredibly catchy, yet resonant tracks that came out last year on their Sun Shy LP (do yourself a favor and give this a spin). "Don't Say No" is another one of Dresses' signaturelove songs, in this case about a guy asking to stay the night at a girl's place. Their chugging-guitar style meshes surprisingly well with Cheat Code's synth-laced production.

Darren's note: Porter does, indeed, love Dresses. He introduced them to our dude crew early in college, and we all got on board. A couple us (not me, sadly) even went to a Dresses show with him. He doesn't know this, but it was the only reason we kept hanging out with him. "He gave the 'Dresses' recommendation that one time..." Seriously though, might be Porter's GOAT recommendation.

"Dead Weight" - Mimicking Birds

I'd never heard of this band until listening to this song, but I'm a sucker for finger-picking guitar tracks like "Dead Weight". They remind me of Ryan Adams in their twanging sound as well as their melancholy, confessional songwriting approach. Lyrics like "I am a corpse, you are a corpse/We're courages corpses moving without a course" and "the only easy way to get out of the dark into space unscathed/ is to cling to that shivering orbit until it's complete" demonstrates a romantically nihilistic worldview. Look guys, it's okay to get deep on a Monday. Check this sumbitch out.

"In The Wind" - Statik Selektah ft. Joey Bada$$, Big K.R.I.T. & Chauncy Sherod

This one's FTK! Boston producer (and former host of radio shows on the beloved WERS and JAMN 94.5) Statik Selektah created this easy riding beat to back positive vibing verses from Brooklyn's young phenom Joey Bada$$ and southern star Big K.R.I.T. Mr. Badmon contemplates being a positive role model for the youth. He gives advice and encourages his fans to dream big and believe in themselves, stating "The only real power is the one over your mind/So once you seek control of every little thing you do/Start to unlock the potential that's inside the youth."

K.R.I.T. goes in on what rap should be about, rejecting its materialism ("Don't sacrifice your canvas to paint a picture of some bullshit/Be weary of the path that talk of private jets in the pool pit") and advocating for being a voice of the people ("It's more about the messaging, less about the flow"). Conscious rap gets a bad rap for being patronizing, but the optimism of this song is genuine.

"Finna Get Loose" - Puff Daddy/P. Diddy/ Diddy ft. Pharrell Williams

And if you don't want to think while listen to music, let "Finna Get Loose" invade your earholes. I have no idea how Sean Combs is involved in this song because this sounds like Pharrell featuring Pharrell with Pharrell, produced by Pharrell. That being said, I'm not complaining.Now go walk uptown to the Bronx and get me some breast milk from a Cambodian immigrant!.


"Eye to Eye" - Astronauts, Etc.

So, I'm cheating a little bit here. "Eye to Eye" came out two Tuesdays ago, on the last iteration of New Music Tuesday. I'm gonna confess something else to you: I don't know the first thing about this band. But I don't think it really matters, because this song is dope.

It's a song about dating...sort of. (I've been in to songs about dating recently.) Homeboy likes this chick, but doesn't want to date her. Def not a fan of being FBO. "All I need is reciprocation," he says. "I don't care where you spend your nights." It's not that easy for him though -- he likes her more than he wants to admit, and his noncholant attitude puts her off, and she's gone. Which tortures him. Just date her, bro.

Subdued synth forms the song's backbone, supporting the whisper-sung vocals. A recurring, slick but simple middle register guitar riff ties the song's sonics together. It's an easy song to listen to. Enjoy it.

PORTER'S PICK OF THE WEEK: "Feeling Good" - Ms. Lauryn Hill

It was only right for Ms. Hill to cover the standard in honor of Nina Simone. Both are considered some of the most talented and influential female singers of all time. Both had unconventional and evocative styles to make up for their limited vocal ranges. Both were enigmatic, but incredibly gifted. While scanning New Music Friday, I stopped in my tracks while listening to "Feeling Good".

The a capella intro drew me in instantly. The instrumentation is tight, from the horns to percussion to the strings. And that guitar solo ending? Chills.

I usually am not a fan of covers. Most don't bring anything new to the table; when they do it's merely to serve the person covering the song, gaining undeserved fame in the process. Hearing Lauryn Hill pay homage to Nina Simone is a beautiful exception.