JMSN – Blue Album

Blue.

The color sparks endless images and emotions, much like the vast instrumentation and melodies of JMSN’s newest effort, Blue Album. If you don’t know the genius that is JMSN, we are happy to introduce to you one of the great talents of soul music. JMSN is a multi-talented singer/songwriter/composer currently residing in Los Angeles who has featured on classic albums like good kid m.A.A.d city (you can hear him distinctly on “Sing About Me” at around 6:18), and made some unreal music and accompanying videos over the past few years.
For those of you who are already familiar with JMSN, his impeccable debut Priscilla, and follow-up Pllaje,
you are in for another treat. Blue Album is one of the best, most cohesive albums released in 2014.

IMG_0231-1024x608.jpg

On Blue Album, JMSN sings about relationships and personal struggles and stays true to his core multilayered R&B/Soul sound, through a mix of some more live instruments—the cymbals and snares never sounded so rock! The album’s intro, “My Way,” sounds like the musical lovechild of Jeff Buckley and Luther Vandross, in the greatest way possible. “Bout It” starts with just keyboards, hi-hats, and a lowkey harmony, and then peaks
with beautiful falsetto, more explosive drums, epic strings and an addictive vocal sample. On “Waves,” JMSN combines a groovy bass-line with some sick tropical vibes (that rattling drum in the background is almost as catchy as the hook!). The second half of the album is almost entirely made up of classic slow R&B jams with personal and apologetic lyrics; “Delay” is one of our favorites, by far.

Money gonna bring me down, thinking ‘bout the things I need/ But ain’t it funny? That nothing in this life comes free/ So I’m chasing money, cause you know it doesn’t grow on trees…They say that cash is king/ And that you’ll never stop needing ends

JMSN's talent, quite literally, knows no bounds. His beautiful yet charismatic voice floats effortlessly from every note and melody in every track on this truly incredible opus. It's not hard to recognise that every single piece of Blue Album has been slaved over in search of musical perfection. We believe it will be a timeless classic. 

The singles released prior to the album still hold up well after heavy play, too. The minimal “Street Sweeper” knocks in the whip and on an intimate date. The song touches JMSN’s obsession with a woman, and the remix featuring Fools Gold’s Freddie Gibbs delves deeper into the subject. “Ends (Money)” might be the most socially conscious song of the year, and is accompanied by another swooping hip-hop beat and a genius video that you must see.

Honestly, there’s not much else to say about this album. JMSN took his years of experience as a true artist and crafted a sonically superior album, and we’re beyond impressed. Though, unfortunately, Blue Album leaked about two months prior to its December 9 release date, that all you real music lovers (like us) will go out and support this amazing record and catch JMSN on tour soon!

Logan – FeedYourCity

There must be something in the water…the LA hip-hop scene is booming with amazing new talent!
We’ve already put you on to Boogie, D. Niro and KR, and now we’re excited to share with you another
aspiring rapper out of LA, Logan.

By chance, we came across Logan’s debut single/video, “TMD,” a couple months ago and we honestly cannot stop watching and listening. On his first single, Logan combines a stunting hook with hard hitting 808s and sporadic hi hats and snares. It will without a doubt be stuck in your head by the second listen. He states his godliness and shouts out Lil Wayne in his verses, which are complemented by the craziness and hilarity of
the video. The damn thing starts with a house exploding, for god’s sake. Definitely a must see!

At the beginning of the month, Logan dropped his first album, FeedYourCity, which is an interesting and mostly trap-inspired debut project. The tape’s intro, “HYB,” is goes just as hard as “TMD,” and shows Logan’s range of flow. However, Logan does not seize every moment to turn up on FeedYourCity, like he does on “TMD,” and it pays off every time. When Logan gets personal and sing-raps about women, he shines the brightest. 

On “This Lude” he auto-tune croons, “I don’t mean to doubt you, I ain’t perfect girl/ You know I got a few trust issues,” which hits the heart enough before the beat breaks down to minimal kick drums and keys, and then comes all the way back to a beautiful boom bap composition. Logan has a pure 808s & Heartbreak-type moment on the second verse of “The One,” jumping out of the chorus with an intense delivery and even more meaningful lyrics. You really have to just sit and run this one back a few times.

There’s no better, girl I should know better/ But girl if I’m loving you, I can’t do no better/ Girl I’m a go-getter, I gotta get it, I gotta get it/ When you’re around, I gotta hit it, I gotta hit it/ Can’t be a rapper and old n**** shit, I admit it…Wanna be with you, girl/ Wanna be with you, girl/ I know, but maybe I don’t/ Maybe I’ll find you when I found out, that I’m looking at The One

By the tail-end of FeedYourCity, Logan takes us on an even deeper emotional journey. He delves into his insecurities and demons on the outro, “Wale’s Outro (God & I).” “Self-hate, it fills up my mouth sometimes/
I even doubt my rhymes,” he raps. 

FeedYourCity is certainly not the best or most introspective project of 2014. However, the production remains cohesive throughout, despite some changes in style from song to song. It is also undeniable that there are unique feelings Logan put into this album—whether it be confidence or sadness—and they come across on all
10 tracks. We find this to be a strong, strong debut for Logan, as we’ve learned a lot about him and can’t get over his “AY!” ad-lib that reminds us of a more lively Chance the Rapper. We commend Logan on his creativity—the artwork, videos and skits he used and made for this project are impeccable—and look forward to seeing him progress even further as an artist.

Grab your copy of FeedYourCity here (for free), and thank us later.

D. Niro, & Those West Coast Nikes

Allow us to introduce you to one of Los Angeles’ most captivating new artists, D. Niro. D. Niro is a young-gun
on the come up, looking to shake up the rap game with his captivating stories – from the streets to the
county jail, with what we’re calling a dope 'new' and 'inventive' West Coast sound.

Niro just dropped his first street single, “Get To It,” which is very representative of all this, and it’s one of the most mature sounding first releases we’ve heard in some time. The production features a smooth laid back synth pad, skittering hi-hats, and precise snare hits. While “Get To It” has got that chill vibe, it definitely knocks, and is most definitely car/club ready. 

On the track, Niro raps about his steady grind, overcoming all obstacles and shouts out the ladies.
His flow starts as a catchy sing-rap (Drake fans will like this) from the chorus—“Go through a lot but I get through it/ Nikes on my feet man I just do it/ I be on my grind I gotta get to it”—and transitions effortlessly into the second verse when he touches on relationships. We’re most impressed here, Niro raps, “See me and baby got a bond, I’m not trying to break it/ After five heartbeats with her, you know mine is racing/ But if a heart’s a house of love, you know mine is vacant/ Nobody never gave me shit, and that’s why I’m gonna take it.” with diverse lyrical flow. We’re not going to get into the genius of Niro’s technical skills, wordplay and metaphors, but you Hip-Hop heads out there will definitely get it.

Been through a lot, but I’m still improving … watch me get to it

If you need a little bit more than some coffee to … 'get to it' … today, then you know what to do. The UntitledX team are excited to hear D. Niro’s full debut project, which is expected sometime in the coming months that features some A-list Rappers and Producers. Make sure you follow Niro here for updates. 

Luke James – Luke James

R&B has seen new life in the decade or so. With the great popularity of R. Kelly and Usher in the early 2000s,
the autotuning T-Pain and Chris Brown in the late 2000s, and now stars like Jhene Aiko, Frank Ocean and
The Weeknd, R&B has not been as prominent in years! Behind these shining singers, though, is a new
class of soulful serenaders - BJ The Chicago Kid, Elijah Blake and now, Island Records' Luke James

Born and raised in New Orleans, 30 year old Luke James has been a singer/songwriter in Los Angeles now for years. He’s written (and opened for) Tyrese, as well as Britney Spears and Keri Hilson. James inked a solo deal with Island Def Jam back in 2011, coming off the hype of his #Luke mixtape and single "I Want You," which would go on to receive a 2013 Grammy Nomination. Since then, it's been a waiting game for James' debut to be finalized and released. This year, after dropping the Rick Ross assisted "Options," James and Island decided on September 23rd for his debut. While it was a roller coaster for this record to finally come to fruition, it was well worth the wait; Luke James might just be the best R&B album of the year. 

The album features concise, minimal instrumentals, which often times explode into multi-layered choruses. Take the lead single, “Options,” for example; the track starts with a simple piano riff, and transforms into a monstrous head bopper featuring live guitars and knocking hip-hop hi-hats. James’ lyrics range from super confident- “I stepped up to her, asked ‘what’s your size?’”- to relatable relationship mess-ups-"I know I messed up when I missed your birthday.”

Including disco/80s-pop inspired tracks like "Dancing in the Dark" and "Expose," as well as modernized- but not compromising or trend following- R&B/Hip-Hop crossovers such as "Options" and "The Run," Luke James delivers a collection of beautiful love songs that evoke emotion, whether you’re doing imaginary pull-ups to the bass hits on “The Run” or slow-dancing to James’ chilling cover of Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me.” 

Even though Luke James is not the conceptual masterpiece that say, channel, ORANGE is, it is an awesome collection of breakup songs (see: "Options," “Glass House” and "Exit Wounds") and baby-making soul music (see: "Dancing in the Dark," “Make Love to Me” and "I Want You").  For someone who opened for Beyonce on her last solo world tour, James deserves a comparison to Queen B, rather than his male R&B counterparts. Like Bey, James has an impeccable voice that cannot be mistaken for anyone else’s, and we're all looking forward to hearing what comes next!

Introducing Jordan Rakei & Redefining What You Believe To Be "Real Music"

It’s strangely difficult to articulate the nostalgic feeling you get when listening to Jordan Rakei’s newly incepted style of incredible-ness. Brisbane, Australia’s ‘pop up out of nowhere’ artist, apparently, only began performing his incredible talent(s) live at the end of 2013, and has since been dubbed a huge upcoming success with his hybrid-style of groove, lo-fi, soul, Jazz, R&B, Reggae and basically everything else. What the hell do we call it? Freakin’ awesome, that’s what.

Rakei recently dropped his new E.P Groove Curse, in mid-August, to some well earned praise. The self proclaimed musician, producer, singer, songwriter has been making ‘rather large’ waves nationally, and internationally over the past year or so, however we strongly believe he’s about to hit new limits with his latest opus. That saying “this is what real music sounds like” couldn’t be more spot-on.

Groove Curse could definitely be defined as an E.P that encapsulates everything about the gorgeous Australian Summer. Rakei experiments with a diverse range of blended instrumental sounds that are beautifully composed but more importantly complimented with his smooth yet limitless vocal-range. It’s fluid, contemporary, an incredible listen and very engaging. Imagine sitting comfortably on a super yacht sailing through the south of France listening to a beautiful chilled-out track like “Alright” that endures long periods of pure-instrumental-jazz-lo-fi-amazingness whilst you’re taking in the view at sunset and sipping on some ridiculous cocktail your barman has concocted for you … that’s pretty much the narrative that comes to mind when listening to Rakei.

Second to “Alright", Groove Curse’s “Add The Baseline” track, conveys, well – exactly what the title implies. Rakei rocks and changes through some boundless melodies and harmonies overlaid on a super-sweet baseline with some dynamic keys’ that will get your head bobbing no matter what you’re doing. This is a truly powerful E.P and another huge success for all of the talented musicians out there who are pushing the boundaries of musical genres today. 

With the likes of huge international names like Chet Faker, Fat Freddies Drop and Mark de Clive Lowe hailing Rakei as and incredible talent, there’s no doubt we will be seeing and hearing a lot more from this talented smooth-sailing Australian.

Incredible work Rakei, we’re digging it – a lot.

Jordan_Rakei.png

KR's " I$0LYF3" And Why You Should Be Screaming About It …

A little over a week or two ago, independent L.A Rapper KR released his highly anticipated project I$0LYF3,
to some serious critical acclaim. After building a successful underground following since the release of his I$0LYF2 in May last year, with the help of earlier tracks & projects, we believe KR has become one of the
hottest new Rappers on the rise – without a doubt.

Since the release of I$0LYF3, KR’s name has begun to be thrown around by everyone who’s stumbled across this amazing new musical talent and buzz. Upon first listen to the project, you gauge an immediate and definitive understanding of the share amount of effort that has gone into every single detail of the mixtape, from lyrics to production through to style and cohesion. It’s truly an incredible listen, and a must-have for your iTunes library.

KR has a superior lyrical ability for a 19 year musician old on the come-up. The single from I$0LYF3 “One Time” conveys this indefinitely. Through a smooth, swooned-out and mature tone, KR depicts his story, reflective on his life and trials that truly sets the foundation of his style as a musician. In a recent interview with Complex,
the talented Rapper’ states:

I’m just trying to put out the best music I can, just incase tomorrow is no longer in the cards for me. I truly believe in the power of the word and rapping to me is like a supplementary sense for my vision

Now if that doesn’t put the level of conceptuality and professionalism of KR into context for you then you should stop reading now, because we don’t know what else will. With all of this hype surrounding the 13-track release in the third instalment of his I$0LYF series, it’s not difficult to see that KR has got some wicked talent. 

The diverse vibe of this project is beyond incredible, it’s everything you would hope for when ‘accidentally’ stumbling across a project of this calibre throughout your journey of the inter-web' everyday. Congratulations on an incredible feat of creativity and prowess KR, salute!

Boogie, Thirst 48 – "Let Me Rap"

We're excited to present the most slept on project of 2014: Thirst 48by up and coming independent LA rapper Boogie. Sitting at just over 40,000 views on his debut, Boogie might be one of the most promising hip-hop artists in years. This is a bold statement; however, Thirst 48 is an incredibly mature introduction to a talented man of the streets like Boogie. 

While Thirst 48 has some street tracks, like “Westside”, “Highskoo Interlude”, and “Still Be Homies”, the album serves as more than an introduction to Boogie as an artist. It's a conceptually-driven album and a very strong body of work. Down to the artwork, featuring a selfie being taken during an intimate moment, Boogie crafted a real message with Thirst 48

I Built This Underground Railroad To Get Me Out This Hell-Hole ...

The main theme he touches on is society's obsession with social media validation. While everyone around Boogie is taking Snapchats and trying to slide into DMs, he's searching for something notably deeper.
Boogie's thirst is for human interaction and affection, which is what we should all be searching for. However,
because of social media and the street mentality in his culture, Boogie's thirst is the one looked down upon.
He realizes his differences, "As hard as I try to be, being hard is where I lost more." And he apologizes several times for his relationship goals, "There's too much simping on my tape." That's where Boogie is wrong, though, because he's not simping about a girl, he's worried about the world around him.

"Let Me Rap", the single from Thirst 48, absolutely screams "Your Summer-Jam". Everything from the laid-back late-90s rap-inspired instrumental to the super laid-back lyrical flow Boogie constructs over the track encapsulates everything nostalgic you can remember about "that awesome song that defined your summer" that year. Very easy-listening, very cool and very clever. We love this track from Boogie.

Need we say more? No, simply plug in your headphones, log off of social media, listen and enjoy! 

Introducing Rachel Foxx

East London's best kept secret is ready to share her soulful voice with the world. Rachel Foxx is fresh off the release of her debut self-titled E.P Rachel Foxx, which was released earlier this week. Young, extremely talented and beautiful, Foxx aims to captivate minds and hearts alike with her newest musical offering. 

Foxx's newly released self-titled E.P is a unique little project that encompasses the solidarity of Foxx's musical-foundation. It's not difficult to see that she has drawn deep-inspiration from her talented passion for the blending of contemporary Hip-Hop and Soul music upon first hearing her voice. The ear-catching characteristic of Foxx's musical-style is without a doubt, her phenomenal voice/style. This talented young East-London'er gently (yet subtly) floats effortlessly between her lyrics in which her melodies drift between the middle and higher registers' of her voice, thus encapsulating anyone and everyone upon their first-listen.

She simply has a beautiful sound. In addition to this, we believe this is why and how she has caught the 'ears' of the SoundCloud giants and tastemakers in the past three months with her amazing single "Before You", which has just soared past 150k plays. Nice work Foxx.

Foxx's management informs us that on the back of her E.P release she will be heading to the magical city of
New York to do some recording and will perform at selected shows when she returns back to the U.K. What an impressive talent and an even more impressive sound. We know without any question, Miss Foxx is definitely a foxy-one-to-watch.

Introducing Ryn Weaver & Her Promises E.P

We are living in the era of constant noise in music. Just about every person we know owns a computer, and is capable of recording and releasing music. Whilst this results in an uncountable number of struggle-mixtapes released on Datpiff and moody singer/songwriter demos sent to labels every day, some artists are able to break through the barriers and set themselves apart from the noise in a huge way. Enter mystery-girl Ryn Weaver

On June 24, SoundCloud was blessed with “OctaHate,” the debut single of the then completely unknown Ryn Weaver. Quirky keys, finger snaps, explosive chorus n’all, the song soared to over a million views in roughly two weeks. Production by Benny Blanco, Michael Angelakos, Cashmere Cat and Charli XCX certainly helped, and days after release most blogs were raving about the track and wanted to know where the hell Weaver came from. 

Beyond “OctaHate” (“the best song wasn’t the single...”), Ryn Weaver delivers three other beautiful tracks on Promises. The title track kicks off the EP with a vocal loop reminiscent of Lorde’s “Ribs” or CHVRCHES’ “The Mother We Share” and breaks into an anthemic beat with glistening synthesizers. Weaver’s songwriting is somewhat moody, as the E.P revolves around a love interest. However, the subject matter doesn’t get too stale because after all, it’s only a four song E.P, and the way Weaver describes her heartbreak is more in line with classics like Here, My Dear or 808s & Heartbreak. She repeats on the chorus, “Never meant to break my own promises” and retreats during the first verse “I cross my heart and hope to die, unless I happen to lie.”
Sounds like something conceptually-clever that Kanye would throw-out, right?! Smart girl...

Weaver supposedly passes the time with Coffee and a half a pack .... or so she says

Promises’ final track, titled “Sail On” deals with similar boy troubles, but actually results in Weaver’s love abandoning her. She struggles with this loss (“How do I do to let it go”), but looks hopeful anyways and decides to “sail on” as well. 

Say what you want about Ryn Weaver and her label situation. Her debut project, Promises, is freaking awesome and will remain in rotation for a long time. Ryn Weaver is exactly what pop music needs and we can only hope a tour and full length album are coming soon. If only this is what Top 40 radio sounded like…


Sinead Harnett – N.O.W

Hailing all the way from North-London and collaborating with talented acts such as: Rudimental, Disclousure, Ryan Hemswroth and a slew of others, it's likely Sinead Harnett has made her way to your ears with her incredible soul-driven vocals and sexually charismatic style. 

Perfection and quality are the only two characteristics that spring to-mind when describing the talent and production of everything Harnett releases (and has released to date). Influenced by the likes of Whitney Houston, Tina Turner and UK Grunge music it's no wonder this gifted Britt’ brings something unique and invigorating to listeners from around the world with this amazing ‘feel good sound’ she successfully
conveys in her music.

We simply can’t stop listening to Harnett's amazing breakout track "Paradise" from her new EP: N.O.W.
which you should purchase from iTunes (now). Amazing work Harnett! We’re very, very into it.