So it’s another Future Flavours and I definitely have to mention the sad passing of the brilliant Maya Angelou-what a Leviathan of the literary world. If you don’t know any of her books just check out her classic I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings (1969) awesome!
Well we drop another assortment of supreme talent on the 27 06 14 including Caitlyn Scarlett who will feature in Future Flavours and the alchemist’s wet dream in the shape of Dub Mafia who bring together a heady array of genres. Tickets are out right now so get your advanced tickets for 8 pounds which guarantees you 7 hours of live music followed by some brilliant after hours dj’ing all filmed for you to watch at a later date-cya there!
Ok here we go with some brill talent and it’s an all female line-up this time. I’m like a male Germaine Greer-let’s go in!
Can you catch the Caitlyn Scarlett?
Well I came across Caitlyn on one of my searches for talent for Quality Control. Musically Caitlyn is part of a talented collective called the Space Age Crew which features names like Little Simz who is cutting a swathe in the UK and US market for her hip-hop swagger.
So it was the banging bass inspired sounds of her debut single Bad Love which grabbed my aural attention. Currently on over 130000 hits on Soundcloud the single did what all debut singles should do and that is intrigued me to the fullest ergo I had to check out her imaginatively named Jurassic Jukebox and Other Drugs ep.
The ep (with production from Ayo Beatz) really delves into a number of genres from bass music in, If You Go, to acoustic renditions in Sunset Cigarette, rock and elements of pop in the catchy Inside My Head complete with the sound of a Wurlitzer in the background; the ep is like a piece of magnesium on water. Unlike some debuts however where this restless nature in terms of genres can signify a lack of clear identity or focus with Caitlyn this just feels like a lady delving into the genres she just loves while dropping her brilliant voice on the top-magic. It’s so good it’s like Haagen Daz ice cream (Cookies and Cream to be exact) in the park with friends.
At only nineteen this singer songwriter is definitely a name to watch-can you catch the Caitlyn Scarlett-of course you can she is at the next Quality Control Live?!
Fifi Rong-the right choice.
Next up we run into the creative vagaries of the awesome and rather lovely Fifi Rong whose sound could be called experimental. She’s an interesting mix whose musical history takes in names like the seminal Tricky. In turn her musical phonebook has names like Skepta on speed dial.
Fifi (who is orginally from Beijing) comes from that stock of artist where creativity seems second nature. From her self-taught skills in music production with her brooding occasionally dark and always engrossing sounds, to video production and even designing her own clothing Fifi is a one woman creative seeking to bring her challenging artistry. Outside of music she is clearly an ambitious lady managing, marketing and organising the pr for her musical output-she’s like a Jack of all trades mastering all.
So music and well her current musical project is the ep Next Pursuit. The title track from that ep is beautifully dangerous like a sultry femme fatal with a knife in her hand deciding whether to knife you or make passionate love to you. It’s a mix of something that could bless a Quentin Tarantino film as a slightly psychedelic edge hypnotises while a banging beat requires some trance like dancing. Indeed it’s a track that needs a particularly powerful hallucinogenic from a remote Brazilian tribe-‘who is there arggghhh?’
While Next Pursuit is slightly trippy, Breathless (where she sings in her native tongue) is a surreal, sublime something (not for everyone) but I liked it. In terms of her live show well it is a powerful and strange dichotomy where she dresses up as Geisha girl decked out in full regalia while performing tracks that are of course very much of now and maybe ahead of their time.
Interestingly enough Fifi has been approached by the bane of Saturday night tv The Voice to appear on the show but with their wish to neatly package her into a genre she has refused them twice and thank the stars for that. We don’t need neatly packaged we just need great music and she does that with massive amounts of aplomb.
Her back catalogue is telling tight productive tracks. Just check out her 15 track album Wrong-absolutely love Only If I Knew which is decadent (on the levels of a Roman aristocrat). It’s like being fed Strawberries and Cream Haagen Daz after being in the desert for a week while receiving a sensual massage from that sexy if dangerous femme fatale I spoke about earlier-(she still has the knife by the way)!!
Fifi Rong is just so right!
Are you watching Basheba?
As a lover of all that is dnb Basheba is the perfect fresh and commercially viable name that is exploding out of the streets of north London. She has already been short listed by MTV Brand New Unsigned for this year for cuts like No More. The track received support from the usual protagonists like; MTV Base, Channel AKA, SBTV, Capital Xtra and BBC.
While I like the track No More it’s her latest dnb inspired number that I feel has the real legs on it.
Dirty Love is a slightly darker affair blessed by a sombre rich bass, spine tingling violins and words speaking of a particularly toxic love-‘your name has burnt these lips too many times’-it’s like Bonnie and Clyde or Brad Pitt and Juliette Lewis in Kalifornia (1993) type of love-not healthy. The addition of the male collaborative vocal of Jordan Reece and his equally crisp input evidently makes it seem like we are listening to the couple almost talking to each other and it works. Dirty Love is so good it’s like eating a tub of Haagen Daz Belgian Chocolate after a particularly hot sauna in Iceland while you lie in your birthday suit-‘wow’.
The video of course is the perfect accompaniment telling the story in a short filmic piece where we follow a Bonnie and Clyde type couple while they proceed to cause mayhem which only helps to fuel their sexually intoxicating but nevertheless dangerous love/lust.
Having spoken to her manager I am sure that some further developments are afoot. Certainly a collaboration with Rudimentals is definitely in the pipeline- I see a perfect union like Batman and Robin ‘POW, BISH, BOSH-holy mackerel!’ Further than that I had the privilege of hearing the rough cuts from a forth coming ep and from production, to song writing it is seems a real feast.
Liz brings that 90’s vibe.
Last up is a US young singer songwriter called simply Liz. I think there is something cool about this young Cali singer who is stepping quite firmly into sounds of yester year and bringing them back. It’s a fact that fashion, music is cyclical in nature and so at some point a trend or genre will generally return.
The 90’s was a great era for rnb and garage and the simply names Liz is bringing all that back. For individuals of my age her sound feels so nostalgic that I found myself gyrating my replacement hip all be it slowly! It’s so good it’s like eating tub of Haagen Daz vanilla ice cream in the park on a sunny day while you wait for your mates; Aaliyah, Left Eye Lopez, Donnell Jones and Total to come chill with you.
Currently she has a track called Hush that she is pushing which is firmly positioned in the commercial pop genre and in truth while I can see its merits (check the Rocky sample at the beginning), there are other tracks I prefer from her. Her debut ep Just Like You has other tracks which are less commercial possessing more bite: Y2k produced by Lido, Say You Would, Every Word, Turn Around-90’s nuances are all over these tracks like R Kelly on Aaliyah in his heyday cradle snatching glory. For garage flexes you would not go wrong with her track U Over Them-(PSG would be loving that riddim)!
The young lady has already opened for the iconic Blondie at the SXSW and work with names like Young Money and Tyga are part of her cv. If she continues with her current trajectory then while she will drop a few quite commercial tracks she will also drop tracks for a more discerning audience indeed I cannot see her management (who are clearly running a very tight ship) having it any other way.
Let’s see what happens with Liz I feel she could be a name to watch.