We Listened So You Didn’t Have To
Ty Dolla $ign – “Famous”
L.A.’s Ty Dolla $ign has always sounded best when he forgoes his preferred trap beats and backtracks to acoustic guitar. He’s one of today’s few mainstream R&B artists that balances a truly remarkable voice with genuinely fantastic pop music. While his new project “Beach House 3” may make too many of the pop production concessions that always drag Ty’s projects down from critical viability, “Famous” is a reminder that, when given the opportunity, Ty Dolla $ign absolutely nails acoustic music. “Beach House 3” is out now.
Young Thug – “Killed Before”
Young Thug ascribes to the Gucci Mane music release methodology of quantity over quality. It’s unsurprising, therefore, that the vast majority of songs on “SUPER SLIMEY” (his new collaborative commercial mixtape with Future) sound like throwaways. “Killed Before,” however, is an oasis of quality in the album’s tracklist. Founded upon an acoustic guitar/trap beat courtesy of London on da Track, the song could have fit perfectly on “Beautiful Thugger Girls,” and benefits from removing Future from the equation. Drawing all attention to Young Thug’s unique vocalizations and melody, “Killed Before” is one of the rare moments when Young Thug proves he’s worth all the hype. “SUPER SLIMEY” is out now.
Smino – “Anita (feat. T-Pain) [Remix]”
Don’t hate me for enjoying T-Pain. Think what you will, but the much-maligned autotune singer sounds absolutely perfect on this remix of Smino’s incredible “Anita,” a highlight from the latter’s 2017 debut “blkswn.”
Julien Baker – “Hurt Less”
Julien Baker has just released her debut album “Turn Out The Lights,” the follow-up to 2015’s genius “Sprained Ankle.” An immediate highlight, “Hurt Less” is a change of pace for the acoustic singer. Founded on a piano accompaniment, blended with male backup vocals and strings, the track is a departure from the singer’s typical guitar-and-a-voice sensibilities. With a climactic payoff of the final chorus, “Hurt Less” is a gorgeous evolution for the singer. “Turn Out The Lights” is out now.
Selena Gomez x Marshmello – “Wolves”
After the genius “Bad Liar” and the mostly successful Gucci Mane featuring “Fetish,” Selena Gomez’s new Marshmello collaboration is her first real pop misstep of 2017. While sure to be a party staple for the rest of 2017, the song leans too much on EDM tropes to reach the heights of the singer’s previous 2017 releases.
Let us know what you think of these tracks down in the comments, and look out for next week’s list!