Music Recommendation – Single – Curbi, “Discharge”

curbiIt has been a hefty sum of time since I wrote about anything remotely pure EDM, but let’s end that streak with Curbi’s vocal-less “Discharge”. The house song has a foot-tapping but unique rhythm that instantly attracted my attention upon playing it. The best part? Curbi is only 16 years old, so we can look forward to plenty more by the Spinnin’ Records signee.

The synth usage almost resembles a video game soundtrack. It has a retro-electro feel to it, while striking similarities to Martin Garrix. My biggest complaint would be how fast the beat drops, it just comes out of nowhere and feels like a bit of a let-down. Still, it is an impressive debut for the UK teen.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

8.25/10

You can check out the song below:

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Music Recommendation – Single – Sevyn Streeter ft. Chris Brown, “Don’t Kill The Fun”

Sevyn-Dont-Kill-The-FunAs revenge for all of the songs Sevyn has backup vocals in on some of Chris Brown’s biggest hits, I want her to cut any recognition of Chris Brown’s contributions in the credits; Just completely Avicii him. I’m sure there are no bitter feelings, but imagine how hilarious it would be if Sevyn called out Brown on the fact and I had called it early on my silly and miniscule music blog. Alright, let’s kill the fun and talk about “Don’t Kill The Fun”.

This song barely made it past the “Hear It First” category for not being very enjoyable. I decided to give it a recommendation for Chris Brown’s part in the song and Sevyn’s previous commendable record. The song is upbeat, as it attempts to fit RnB into House music’s arse (without lube) as much as possible. The song feels intellectually plain and as it was forced to be more Pop-y than her first EP to keep up with the times. Chris Brown’s part is a bit more pure and unmixed (though not much), and his feature might be the best part of the song.

That being said, Sevyn’s vocals are not bad either. She has showcased her talent before, and you can hear it hiding behind the elongated autotuned background notes. I would say stripping a whole lot of the background noise that passes off for a constructive beat might fix this song quite a bit. Sevyn Streeter has explained that the upbeat sound was to represent her attitude towards life and her work, which I can appreciate. Not to mention, the song starts out solid and consistent. As it continues, the bass appearing in and out drives me crazy, and it could do without sounds like so popping up and disappearing. Also, can we drop the Spongebob Squarepants video game theme music that pops up before the chorus?

The song could be catchy when you pick up the lyrics to the easy chorus, but it hardly feels like RnB by the end. Overall, I would rate this song at:

6.25/10

This may be more of a disappointment due to how much I loved her debut EP. I played “It Won’t Stop” for months, and it is one of my favorites. Regardless, the song just released today, as Sevyn dropped it earlier than anticipated for fans to hear and you can check it out below:

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Music Recommendation – Single – Sherano ft. Amber Revival, Leave It All Behind

sherano-leave-it-all-behindHouse music is to EDM what the saxophone is to Jazz: one of the few reasons that the genre is still relevant to modern Pop music. That being said, I cannot deny that I really like this song. Leave It All Behind is a positive and upbeat House track with a love-based theme that is enjoying to hear for both its beat and corresponding vocals.

Sherano’s vocals are solid and, though they crack a bit, provide a wide outlet of appeal for this song. Amber Revival really makes the duet golden, and as the song continues and she inserts herself into the song, it becomes even more entertaining to hear.

The beat rises throughout each verse, then drops as it transitions into the chorus. The design is rather simple and comparative to the likes of David Guetta and Calvin Harris in its widely like-able design. House music has always been difficult to describe, so forgive me if I cannot get a grip on how I want to word the beat’s sound.

Overall, I would rate the song at:

8.75/10

The song is fun and enjoyable, though the design is not anything hugely new or making a statement. The vocals are, for the most part, well-tuned but feature blips in second-long intervals.

I do enjoy the song, and recommend a listen below:

-Austin Heath

Album Review – Kiki Rowe, Kiki Rowe (Self-Titled LP)

I have written about/worshiped the ground of Toronto RnB singer Kiki Rowe, whose self-titled album just released this afternoon. I have been on the edge of my seat waiting for her new music, and figured while listening I would review her works.

As neutrally as possible, I will break down this album track by track. However, Kiki Rowe hits home for all of my favorites from music (solid production, RnB, Hip-Hop vibe without overdoing it, etc.) so I will be a bit biased towards her songs. That being said, let’s go through each song on Kiki Rowe:

1. Go Getta ft. Maino – Go Getta is a mellow RnB/Hip-Hop piece that is smooth and calming. The hook does not pick up the pace to the point where it goes off-key, but there is something about the chorus that is so well executed that it makes the song entertaining throughout. Maino does a great job of staying with a hard beat to rap to, and the rapper caps off the verse before it starts to get old. It’s a well-rounded song overall and gives a great idea of what the album will sound like. 9.5/10

2. Trust Issues – Already broke this song down here.

3. Too Good To Be You – The empowerment of Too Good To Be You is, if slightly gender-biased, still very motivational and inspiring. It basically goes with the “go with your gut” vibe in a relationship, which I understand from experience is a hard decision to make.  Sometimes you are chronically disappointed in the relationship and Kiki Rowe delivers this message, though it becomes a little more spiteful than I had hoped. The vocals sound great and production is subtle while still playing its part. The song is cut a little short, at only 2:38 long. 9/10

4. Be Alright – This was the song I was originally going to write about. Be Alright was the first Rowe song I heard, and while I find songs like Come Through better (Where was this on the album?) this was a great first impression. The unique sound and RnB flow of the song is melodic, and again I love production on this (though it does dominate the vocals at times). 9.25/10

5. Need You Now – Now we begin to hear the new stuff. This is the first song produced on this album by The Avengerz, who have a huge part in delivering this album successfully. Need You Now has a more pop-dance sound to it (similar to Jazmin Sisters), and I actually love it. If a song were going to be a breakout record for this artist, it would definitely be this one. It still retains an RnB feel but keeps the song exciting, making it my favorite on this album. 9.75/10

6. Always – The second song produced by The Avengerz is Always. The track picks up pace a bit too quickly into the hook, but the RnB sound and consistent beat make the song interesting throughout. Though the song is short, it’s the right length for the song it presents, pulling off only 2:40. 8.75/10

7. Saddest Song – Cancer, death, hunger, and more despair-causing topics are actually not the subject of Saddest Song. Kiki Rowe explains that she has changed her outlook on life and no longer considers herself “The saddest song.” I really like the message and Rowe’s voice in this song, and while there are times that the beat feels conflicting with her voice, it catches on to the unique sound of Kiki and really defines the song. 8.5/10

8. Painted Chains – The lyrics don’t quite stand out to me, but this has a beautifully complex beat and an amazing chorus. The start of the song originally pushed me away but the track really appeals to me by the end. For a while you just kind of play mad-libs with the phrase, “Painted Chains on the _____.” The bridge ends this sequence and sounds how the first two stanzas should have. 9/10

9. Be Alright (DJ Phresh Remix) – Some songs were not meant to be sped up, and I feel as though Be Alright was one of them. It truly is a sped up and more club-based concept of the track. The hook-beat is actually really impressive though, making the song worth a listen. The house music in this album switches up the sound of Kiki, which I can appreciate. Therefore, despite my disappointment with the mixing of Rowe’s voice, I will rate it better for originality. 8.25/10

So overall that averages out to exactly 9/10, which is pretty satisfactory to my standards. I was impressed by Rowe’s debut and quite liked a few songs (and cannot wait to hear more again), though I am a bit bitter that we could not get Come Through on there. But I will stop whining and recommend that you simply go over to earmilk.com to hear the mini-album on Soundcloud.

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – Moiez ft. LARCY, Illusions

The song has had a few listens already, but this was one of those “browsing Soundcloud” finds. Illusions has a similar vocal style to Ellie Goulding on a Calvin Harris track, and though the beat is rather repetitive, it is definitely interesting.

The drop and hook are both upbeat and exciting, and I found that overall the song was pleasant. Not my favorite EDM song but I am a sucker for House music, so I had to write about this. Illusions is my first encounter with either artist, but they both left solid impressions.

Overall, I would rate the song a 8.75/10. Decent song and definitely great for House fans, so I recommend playing it below:

-Austin Heath

Hear It First – Clean Bandit and Jess Glynne, Real Love

Did you like Rather Be? Well regardless, if you did not you are not a Clean Bandit fan because it will literally be the only song they ever release, just with different words (not singers, just words). Basically this is just the same song over again. I do think it is still worth a listen though. I like it, but not enough to break it down and make a full analysis on a song that has a copy and pasted form from a previous hit song.

“You give me that feeling” and “na-na-na-na-na, no place I’d rather be” are basically exactly the same. It’s like they say, if it ain’t broke, don’t even touch it; just sub in new lyrics about the same subject.

Okay, enough sarcasm, listen below and see what you think:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – Calvin Harris ft. Ellie Goulding, Outside

The sequel to Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding’s I Need Your Love has a similar “In love with someone I can’t be with” vibe. This is also a bit of a Hear It First, as the song just dropped this morning (yet already has over 40,000 views).

I am a bit disappointed in how chaotic the song can be. Ellie Goulding sounds impressive, but any Hip-Hop fan automatically has to be a bit biased towards Ellie Goulding. It’s just a thing, don’t question it. Calvin Harris’ parts on the beat just sound very forced with extra noise that really is unneeded.

Overall, I would rate the song at about 8.75/10. Good comeback for I Need Your Love but just not the same song (which seems to have been the goal). Ellie Goulding sounds superb and Calvin Harris has some good pieces but the beat can be too excessive at some points.

Give the song a listen below:

-Austin Heath

Music Recommendation – Single – Avicii, The Days

While this has had a couple million listens already, I wanted to bring this song to the attention of anyone who has not heard it. The track is quite catchy and Avicii’s work on the beat is rather interesting. Sounds similar to a David Guetta track, and not so much like the normal Avicii sound.

The song is made to be a catchy upbeat love song. It achieves its goal and, though the hook seems to say the same thing a couple of times, it is easy to memorize and sing after a couple of listens. The bridge is impressive, showcasing Avicii’s own skills without taking too much time away from the vocals.

While this is a typical pop/EDM song, it is one of the better releases and if a song were to go big soon, I would hope that this is it. Overall I would rate the song 9.25/10. I recommend a listen below, it’s hard not to like it:

-Austin Heath

EDIT: Just learned that the singer in the song is Robbie Williams, for anyone who was wondering.

Music Recommendation – Single – David Guetta ft. Sam Martin, Dangerous

Yesterday I posted the teaser for Dangerous, and today we get the whole song. I expected much more from after the teaser chose the best parts of the song to preview. However Dangerous is still a good try to compete with Lovers On The Sun, though it does not beat it for better song.

The theme is similar to the previous collaboration between these two, how dangerous and crazy their love is. Or the love they have for their women. One of those. But the song is pretty catchy, though repetitive. David Guetta’s beat is solid and Sam Martin sounds nice.

Not too memorable of a song, but the hook is good and the song overall isn’t bad. I would rate it at 8.5/10. I still recommend a listen, I like it:

-Austin Heath

Hear It First – David Guetta ft. Sam Martin, Dangerous (Teaser)

Sam Martin jumps back on a collaboration with David Guetta after Lovers On The Sun was rather successful. While this is only a teaser and I will absolutely review (and most likely recommend) the final song, I thought this was worth a share. David Guetta says he wants to re-invent his sound and come out with something completely new. Let’s see how it goes.

In the meantime, see what you think of the minute and 20 seconds that we are given on SoundCloud:

-Austin Heath