ALTERNATIVE CHILL - WEEK 8 2015
Hey guys! I should warn you, I might seem a little tetchy this week (oh, who am I kidding, I'm a little tetchy EVERY WEEK). I've only just recovered from Mardi Gras, and seeing that it's now Lent, I face 40 days and 40 nights without any chocolate. If the season of renunciation is causing you as much anguish as it is me, then we CAN get through this together! Feel free to join me in spending the entire weekend in bed looking up pictures of brownies on Pinterest while listening to the following top chill songs from Majik, Aisha Badru, Kevin Garrett and more.
MAJIK – IT'S ALRIGHT
I'm under the spell of Majik and I'm LOVING it! “It's Alright” is the debut single from the London duo and introduces us to their super chill, soul-infused sound - one which should go down well with fans of another favorite British two-piece of mine, Honne.
AISHA BADRU – NEVER MIND
No Aisha Badru! This song is far too short. I demand that you serenade me with your smoky vocals and acoustic plucks for evermore. Seriously. Every day. Morning until night. Although I guess I can settle with listening to your debut EP, Vacancy, on repeat if I MUST.
KEVIN GARRETT – CONTROL
OOH, get a load of Kevin Garrett being premièred on Billboard! Jokes aside, he deserves it. It was obvious this Brooklyn crooner was special from the off, and this February he confirms that with his sophomore single, the James Blake-esque “Control.” Just remember where you heard him first (definitely not Billboard).
AERO FLYNN – TWIST (PROD. JUSTIN VERNON)
If Justin Vernon agrees to produce your shit, then your shit must be good. Emerging from the same vibrant Eau Claire scene that brought us Bon Iver, Peter Wolf Crier, Megafaun and more, Aero Flynn may be finding success long after his contemporaries, but he deserves success all the same. No, he REALLY does!
PORTICO (FEAT. JOE NEWMAN) – 101
Forget everything that you thought you knew about Portico Quartet. For starters, they're not even CALLED Portico Quartet anymore! Gone too are the jazz soundscapes that defined the London band in the early years, replaced instead by the pure, unadulterated electronic experimentalism heard on “101.” And yes, that REALLY is alt-J frontman Joe Newman - his voice for once not sounding like nails being scraped down a chalkboard!
TOBIAS – BATH HOUSE
“Bath House.” Is that a genre? As it totally should be a genre for these kind of fluid, undulating and reverb-drenched sounds. Chill ASF as ever Tobias! “Just pop in your grey cassette/Turn up your fuckin' deck/Lend me your ear because the Southside finna wreck.”
RITUAL – MIDDLE OF THE BED (LUCY ROSE COVER)
Okay, I admit it. I haven't heard the original “Middle of the Bed” by Lucy Rose. Do I even have to now that London trio Ritual have offered up this downtempo, trap-infused cover of it? Hmm, if you say so. BRB, going to check it out...
...nope, definitely prefer this version!
ALAYA RADIO – 020 (MIXTAPE)
30 minutes of non-stop chill out music gems by artists as diverse as Tom Misch, Blackbird Blackbird, Sam Cooke and more, as curated by the great Simon Eng on behalf of Alaya Radio. Check out the full tracklisting here, then tune in and drop out. It's ALMOST as good as my column!
MARIKA HACKMAN – UNDONE, UNDRESS
Stop everything! Marika Hackman's debut album We Slept At Last is FINALLY out! Over the last year or so I've featured basically the ENTIRE record in both this and my Indie column, but still! Go out and buy it and get your friends to buy it and pretend that you're all discovering her for the first time.
NICK LENG – TUNNELS AND PLANES
Nick Leng does it again! Following on from his recent collaboration with Carmody, the San Diego producer returns with “Tunnels and Planes” from his debut EP of the same name. As the title suggests, this is an atmospheric instrumental that brings together the electronic and the organic in order to evoke both the metropolitan landscapes from which Nick hails and a place more celestial in nature. Not to mention it's also breathtakingly BEAUTIFUL, but that shit goes without saying!
About Jess Grant
When Jess Grant isn't writing on music, she can be found playing it – on her guitar, on her ukulele, and on her recently acquired mandolin. Playing it hideously, she ought to add. Jess also studies. She studies the English language, to be precise. Jess is currently on her way to a degree in the subject, and enjoys starting and never finishing novels, screenplays, and poetry in her spare time. She also likes dogs. Lots of dogs.