Ayyyyy. I hope y’all enjoy all these songs as much as I am rn writing this thing. Listen on SPOTIFY & read on down thurr ʇ

Vince Staples – Yeah Right (feat. Kendrick Lamar & Kučka)

I went into Big Fish Theory from a position of adjusted expectations. Summertime ’06 is one of my favourite rap albums, I liked last year’s Prima Donna EP but didn’t really think either of the two first singles from this album were as good as I thought they should be. I was as wrong as it is humanly possible to be. This whole album fucking GOES. Vince is rapping over some fucking batshit production, tweaking his trademark sound where necessary & fitting over an incredibly versatile array of different vibes. The standout of this collection of oddities is Yeah Right, the SOPHIE & Flume co-production which has the most apparent feature on the album in Kendrick going in doing his thing over a clanking, gyrating oddball beat. It’s insane. This album is insane. It shouldn’t work. But oh god it fucking does

Miss June – I Don’t Wanna Be Your Dog

I’m pretty sure but can’t be certain but I think the last time I saw Miss June they played this track. If I’m right, it somehow sounds even better live than it does here so make sure the next time they’re in yr area you get along. If I’m wrong then fuck doesn’t this just sound like it would be absolutely nuts live anyway?

People Like You – Everything Matters!

This is a song about a book that I like so much that I bought the titular books after like three listens through & a quick google. These guys are fucking gr8, I love their mixture of twinkly guitars, genuine jazz sections, harsh vocals & ~spoken word~ parts. It all comes together pretty damn flawlessly, every part feeling essential in contributing to a single cohesive sound. The way this song slightly ups the intensity as it draws to a close is fucking tight & I can’t wait to hear how they follow this shit up

Carb on Carb – Take Your Place in the World

I’ve been jamming the first Carb album a bunch at work this week & it helped me make it through what was on the whole not a great one. This song has everything I love about this band, a catchy ass riff running through it, some fantastic drumming & one helluva bridge. These guys have just wrapped up recording their follow up & that’s fucking sick because a) more Carb on Carb music in the world soon & b) hopefully that’ll mean I’ll get to see ’em again sooner rather than later

The National – Graceless

I would never even dream of picking a favourite National song. They’ve been my favourite band for near on 4 years running now & have such an insanely consistent discography (at least from Alligator on) that trying to categorise & rank this shit would be an exercise in complete futility. That being said, none of their songs wreck me as consistently as Graceless does. That refrain of “God loves everybody / don’t remind me”, the subtlety of all the complex instrumentation lurking on the edges, the way Matt barks out the latter parts of the song live. Aaaaa. It’s fucking good. Two of my favourite concert experiences of all time have been screaming every damn word to this song with a huge crowd doing the exact same thing

SZA – Drew Barrymore

One thing that genuinely surprised me about Ctrl is how much of it is comparable to Frank Ocean. Nowhere is that comparison more valid than the opening of this song, it’s not like anything ripped off or stolen but just a sound existing within a very similar lane. It’s good. The world could always use good music in that mold & SZA does that vibe better than I think anybody other than Frank could. It’s a jam & on top of all that it’s got a dope video featuring a cameo by the titular actress herself

Radiohead – Man of War

Oh man. As somebody who hasn’t really dug too much into Radiohead’s multitude of b-sides & off cuts (aside from In Rainbows Disk 2) this bonus disc attached to their OK Computer 20th anniversary OKNOTOK re-release is a blessing. ESPECIALLY the apparently brand new tracks I Promise & Man of War. I can’t believe either of these tracks were held back for so long because they’re both absolutely incredible. Man of War is the more electric of the two, apocalyptic & dramatic in a very late 90s Radiohead kind of way. It’s an absolute jam & comes with a fucking sick video with a suitably creepy vibe & some very very slick editing

Angel Olsen – Not Gonna Kill You

I spent a good amount of my Saturday revisiting two of my favourite albums released in 2016, My Woman (probably my number one from that year) & 22, A Million (see below) & god they’re both so good. I’ve written about My Woman a bunch on here already but never really touched on the fact that for an album pretty packed with songs of love or longing none of them really sound anything other than hopeful or positive. Not Gonna Kill You is a good example of this, a song about accepting feelings & not letting yrself get overwhelmed that manages to cover all that without ever sounding condescending or corny. It’s a jam & one of the songs on here I’ve maybe underrated in the past but I promise I won’t anymore

Bon Iver – 666 ʇ

As I said up there ^, 22, A Million was an album I spent a decent amount of time yesterday listening to. It was raining outside, I was inside under a blanket in front of my turntable reading & it was the first time this year so far that I really felt like winter was here (or close to being here, when the fuck do the seasons actually change anymore?). I’ve loved this song since first hearing this album & it was the first track I could think of on here that I haven’t featured on here yet that deserves a spot. Like all the best parts of this album, it’s a stunning combination of glitchy production & Justin’s trademark heartbreaking vocal performance that exemplifies everything I find absolutely amazing about this album

Beach House – 10 Mile Stereo (Cough Syrup Remix)

They somehow found a way to make Beach House even more tripped out & gooey. It’s sick, as are p much all the songs on this collection. Do yrself a favour & give the whole dang thing a listen

B-Sides and Rarities can be streamed on NPR here


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