BEST CHILL SONGS - WEEK 21

5/26/17
“Photo” by Jorge Flores

The world can be a devastatingly cruel place.

As we continue to process Monday's horrifying events in Manchester, here are some songs to soothe us during this troubling time.

-

TWO FEET – LOVE IS A BITCH

Majestic Casual signee Two Feet sets a brooding tone on his latest single “Love Is a Bitch.” The song begins with the Harlem-based troubadour exhaling his sultry, softly spoken croon over a decadent, expressive blues guitar. Bass-driven electronics then enter to lend “Love Is a Bitch” an added sense of depth and atmosphere, with the lyrics painting a picture of a cold, lonely figure sat at a darkened, smoky bar, whiskey tumbler in his grip.

 

LAUV – I LIKE ME BETTER

Los Angeles artist Lauv – co-writer and co-producer of Cheat Codes and Demi Lovato's collaboration “No Promises” – looks set to follow up the success of his debut single “The Other” this 2017 with “I Like Me Better.” A subtly uptempo piece of electronic pop that delivers a drop as fulfilling as the vocal hook around which the song is built (“I like me better when I'm with you”), “I Like Me Better” is a certified anthem for all of those who're learning to embrace intimacy and vulnerability this summer.

 

SAD PUPPY – FLAMAKAE BABY

They may be called Sad Puppy, but the Athens-based producer duo's latest single “Flamakae Baby” is pure happiness in a box. The song – which has already received support from the popular YouTube channel Mr. Suicide Sheep – starts with house piano stabs, over which a cute uncredited female vocalist sings about flying kites with the one that she loves. A build then gives way to a melodic drop, bringing with it a kind of explosion of childlike glee that'll leave a smile on your face for the rest of the day.

 

EMMIT FENN – WOMAN

Emmit Fenn turns up the heat on his sultry latest single “Woman.” The follow-up to “1995” is a slow-burning carnal hymn that acts as a showcase for the Los Angeles artist's voice, with piano droplets, skittering hi-hats and dimly lit guitar licks courtesy of none other than We Are: The Guard favorite NoMBe serving as a minimalistic backdrop to Emmit's aching, yearning rasp and sensuous lyricism. A compulsory addition to any baby-making playlist.

 

ALAYNA – FALLING AUTUMN (VASCO REMIX)

The dulcet tones of Alayna's debut single “Falling Autumn” return to these pages once more, only this time in the form of a remix by Copenhagen producer Vasco. By augmenting Alayna's down-pitched vocals with organic percussion and delicate synth inflections, Vasco succeeds in delivering a remix that makes for a refreshing alternative to the original, all the while retaining the tenderness that made said original so special in the first place.

 

KLANGSTOF – WE ARE YOUR RECEIVER (KARNAVAL BLUES REMIX)

One month after sharing a propulsive version of “Hostage” by Catching Flies, Klangstof return this May with another remix, this time by Leeds producer Karnaval Blues, whose beat-driven take on Close Eyes to Exit cut “We Are Your Receiver” makes for essential late-night listening. Featuring the reverb-drenched vocals of Klangstof frontman Koen van de Wardt laid over a bed of meditative electronic atmospherics – replacing the native cascade of guitars – dare I say that I prefer this remix to the original?

 

JMR – JUNE CARTER

Hailing from Nashville, JMR delivers an ode to the city's two most revered associates in the form of “June Carter.” “I'll be your rock and roll Johnny/If you'll be my June Carter Cash,” croons JMR in a foreboding baritone throughout the velveteen piece of R&B, which pits plush string arrangements against convulsive trap beats “The song is a story that tributes Johnny Cash's sort of dark magic to the girl who enabled it,” says JMR. Enjoy.

 

TYZO BLOOM (FEAT. CASEY COOK) – TIP TOE

For an artist who's been making music for less than a year, Tyzo Bloom sounds every bit the seasoned professional on his latest single “Tip Toe.” Opening with a tranquil cascade of chimes meeting the airy guest vocals of Casey Cook, before intricate, cut-glass percussion enters to lend the whole thing a Mura Masa-type vibe, “Tip Toe” is yet another dexterously crafted piece of chilled out electronica from this Los Angeles producer.

 

J. VIEWS – HOLDING A MAP

Brooklyn producer Jonathan Dagan – AKA J. Views – brings a touch of 80s to proceedings with the road trip-friendly “Holding a Map.” Mixing retro saxophones, thwacking drums and big, shimmering synths, the song – which was uploaded to SoundCloud on Tuesday, but appears to originate from the 2013 EP Far Too Close (Remixes) – is the kind of cassette tape material that you want to listen to while cruising along the coast in a cherry red convertible, windows rolled down and volume turned up.

 

MT. WOLF – BOHEMIA

This Friday sees the release of Mt. Wolf's long-awaited debut album Aetherlight, and to celebrate, the London trio have shared the angelic “Bohemia.” Described by the band as “a call for help to the heavens,” it's a sweeping folk music opus that makes use of grandiose sting arrangements and the chant-like falsetto vocals of frontman Sebastian “Bassi” Fox to dexterously build in scope and vision over the space of five minutes, until finally reaching a state of transcendence in the closing moments. FFO: Sigur Rós, Phoria.

-

Peace and love. x

Photo” by Jorge Flores is licensed under CC0 1.0 (cropped and resized).