Essential Track: My Way ft. Drake
The sound of money turning into lap dances all over the greater Atlanta metropolitan area, Fetty Wap has officially blown up. From radio waves to live performances on late night tv, 2015 might be the year that trap went mainstream for good. Though originally from New Jersey, Fetty Wap’s Gucci Mane-influenced groove is dripping ‘lean and pure dirty south. Sure everyone loves Trap Queen, it was so ubiquitous this summer that it’s probably going to end up in a Toyota commercial soon, but for our hard earned $1 bills, his soon-to-be hit My Way (complete with requisite guest bars from The 6 God Drake himself) is our trap jam of the summer.
Essential Track: Girl
Where else would a music act called The Internet meet but on MySpace? Vocalist Syd the Kid and producer Matt Martians connected online, eventually joining the Odd Future crew before branching out with their own blend of shape-shifting, cloud-floating grooves that defy categorizations. After garnering a cultish following with hipsters and college radio, the dynamic duo’s third album "Ego Death” has mass appeal with guest spots by Janelle Monae on “Gabby” and breakout rapper Vic Mensa on “Go With It.” The percussion stomps, thick bass and love-lust lyrics playfully bounce from swagger to sensitivity, creating the perfect feel-good, slow-burn vibe for the summer.
Essential Track: My Type
Calling Saint Motel’s funky, retro-influenced rock infectious is probably the understatement of the year. Mixing classic brass sections, soulful vocals and modern indie rock influences, Saint Motel has created an unmistakeable sound that’s had us shaking our collective asses all summer. Drop these jams when the party needs a lift or just before heading out for the night, these guys are the party starters of the summer.
Essential Track: Coming Home
This voice of a generation got his millennial stamp of approval by being featured in an iPhone commercial. The Fort Worth, Texas soul sensation’s rich vocals are throwback to ‘60s era Sam Cooke and Otis Redding, but conjure up more emotions than mere nostalgia. His debut album, Coming Home, makes what’s old new again, with a retro cackle of horns, do wop, gospel and love ballads, but the sweet, pure, voice lives in the here and now. The only thing sharper than his golden throat are the vintage suits he sports on-stage, do not miss him if you have the chance. Good music is timeless and songs like “Coming Home” and “Better Man” will live forever… and not just on YouTube.
Until The Ribbon Breaks
Essential Track: A Taste Of Silver
Until the Ribbon Breaks is best known for their “reimaginations” of songs from The Weeknd, Phantogram and Robert Palmer (yes, please) online, but their debut album, A Lesson Unlearnt, is what has us buzzing. It feels fresh, but sounds familiar with gloomy electro-pop undertones, ominous hip-hop beats, breathy blue-eyed soul vocals and prophetic, poetic lyrics. The mesmeric blend of genres have a cinematic quality with the shadowy film noir-ish R&B of “Pressure” (which samples David Lynch's Lost Highway), the dangerously wild ride of “Revolution Indifference” featuring a cameo by Run The Jewels and the upbeat, raucous “Spark”.