As the godfathers of the new internet micro-genre of “Witch House”, SALEM makes some of the most dark, brutal, and distinctive music I have heard in a long time. Their sound is equal parts Chicago footwork, industrial, hip hop, goth and even R&B. The three members who make up SALEM live across the Midwest, collaborating only through email. Together, John Holland, Jack Donoghue, and Heather Marlatt combine the blown out boom bap production of John and Jack, ethereal singing by Heather and the chopped and screwed rapping from Jack.
While not the most accomplished lyricist, Donoghue has a compelling slowed down, pitched down, demon voiced rap. Its the type of murder music that Tyler, The Creator would make if he was speedballing and listening to Nine Inch Nails. Listen for yourself and tell me that SALEM is not the best soundtrack to your winter ketamine trips.
In addition to making their own original music, SALEM also produce the most awesome remixes of everyone from British goth-pop artist Charli XCX…
… to motherfuckin Gucci Mane.
Show SALEM some love and buy their album King Night. It does not disappoint. Also, check out their website for more videos and some of their fucking SICK mixtapes. Jack’s twitter is also boss. Follow him or die.
So the folks over at Mishka decided to make a dope music video for my favorite song off Mr Mothafuckin eXquire’s new album Lost in Translation. I’m hyped. The verses from Danny Brown (who’s reppin a sick Duck Sauce shirt), Viktor Vasquez and Himanshu Suri of Das Racist (who’s new album is the fucking TRUTH), and El-P (who looks… kinda hefty) all fucking kill it. Check the original song and its accompanying video below.
Make sure to cop Mr. Motherfuckin eXquire’s album for free here, courtesy of Mishka.
Radio Soulwax is the ambitious new project of the Dewaele brothers, the masterminds behind Soulwax and DJ duo, 2manydjs. It is designed to be a 24 hour “radio station” that combines the awesome visual elements of the 2manydjs live show with 24, hour-long audio mixes that incorporate all types of music from blues to punk to classic rock to disco. Starting July 4th, each week a new hour of the audio/visual mix will be released and added to the continuous stream on the site. The first hour, called ‘Introversy’, is a mix of the Dewaele’s favorite song intros. 420 of them. Sound weird? It is. But somehow it works. Check it out for yourself at their site or download the free app for your phone.
To get an idea of what to expect, check out some footage of 2manydjs live show…
They pretty much melt faces live. See them. And tune in to the official debut of Radio Soulwax on July 4th.
– The Worst Known
The blogosphere has been singing the praises of Abel Tesfaye, who goes by the name The Weeknd, since the release of his exceptional first mixtape, House of Balloons in March of this year.
Planned as the first part in a trilogy of mixtapes, House of Balloons combines Tesfaye’s stunning voice and haunting instrumentals that sound like burned-out club jams for the apocalypse. Doomsday never sounded so sexy. The unifying factor in this melting pot of styles is the atmosphere of inherent darkness that pervades the tape, both in its lyrics and almost Burial-esque production. The songs are about mostly about drugs and women (no complaints here) but instead of singing about beautiful girls getting down in the club, Tesfaye instead focuses on the seediness of the party vibe and the regret and haze that come after a night of bad decisions.
The Weeknd is planning to release the next tape in the trilogy, Thursdays this summer and the triptych’s finale, Echoes of Silence sometime this fall. In the meantime, download House of Balloons for free at his site. This shits gonna be on repeat til Thursdays comes out.
The dudes at Freshjive have been producing pretty entertaining short films lately. Do you remember that “Riding a Bike Video”? I mean, how could you not. Anyways, this one is dedicated to all the people that like to… self-medicate. The production is pretty cool, and obviously is meant to be humorous; props to the soundtrack addition too. Enjoy:
I’d like to think that I am pretty open to all genres of music. All genres expect for country. I don’t know what it is about country music, but it just doesn’t hit my ear right. The one exception to my aversion for the genre would have to be Johnny Cash. He is the fucking man. Period. It’s a shame that he’s dead, but at least he had quite a thrill filled life. He’s done everything from being a drug addict to starting a forest fire. In fact, after his truck caught on fire due to an “overheated wheel bearing” the resulting fire ended up burning about 508 acres of the Los Padres National Forest. It also burned and killed 49 out of the refuge’s 53 endangered condors. Cash was pretty cavalier about the whole “killing an endangered species” situation, and is quoted as saying “I don’t care about your damn yellow buzzards.”
He had quite an extensive career. I mean, he started in 1954 and kept playing until he died in 2003. Not as many people can stay in the lime light that long and still produce great music. I mean, look at one of his early songs, like “Cocaine Blues” from his album ‘Love, God, Murder’:
Now compare it to “God’s Gonna Cut You Down” from one of his last albums, ‘America V: A Hundred Highways’:
They are so vastly different, and they showcase Cash’s ability to grow and alter his style while still staying true to his country roots.
Aside from making tons of classics of his own he is also responsible for some excellent covers, such as Bob Marley’s “Redemption Song” and Nine Inch Nails’ “Hurt”.
“Hurt” has a pretty solid music video accompanying it, displaying Cash’s feelings of regret and dissatisfaction with events from his past. He worked on it for quite a while with record producer and Columbia Records co-president Rick Ruben. Ruben has worked with such names as The Beastie Boys, Run DMC, Rage Against the Machine, Metallica, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, etc. Without him this song would not have happened, and seriously, it’s a great video and a great song. Check it out:
While we’re on the topic of great covers and Johnny Cash, Wyclef Jean from the legendary rap group ‘The Fugees’ does a great cover Cash’s song “Delia’s Gone”. Real talk, Johnny Cash has been covered many, many, times by multiple people, and this is hands down the best cover out of any Johnny Cash song. If you’re only going to watch only one of the videos I post, let it be this one:
RIP Johnny Cash.