Ok so I am sorry for the delay in bringing my sometimes monthly blog Future Flavours where I delve into Pandora’s musical box (not that box) and find some of the brightest names and the hottest tracks going on. I remember speaking to an individual in the music industry a little bit back about the breadth of music out-it’s truly impossible to keep up but I love that because of course I never get bored but from an artist’s perspective it means they have to work really hard to poke their heads above the parapet and be noticed-anyway let’s move to the meat of this blog.
In this issue I positively explore like a modern day Columbus without claiming that I discovered something already there or indeed bring a disease like syphilis to the indigenous people before allowing people of a nefarious mind to completely wipe out said indigenous people after that giving (to the few survivors) tobacco in return for gold.
Anyway with that let’s go in!!
Sushi Samson but no Delilah
How do you fuse Japanese cuisine with a biblical strong man and get a lethal producer, I don’t know but what I do know is me love Sushi Samson longggggggg timmmmmme!?
I first got hooked on this producer’s creative sounds when I featured a producer I am equally enamored with, Mighty Mark from Baltimore. Sushi was on co-production duties helping Mighty bring a delicious retro sounding hip hop cracker called Ping Pong featuring the wonderfully filthy lyrics of TT The Artists who is so sexy just saying her name makes your girl jealous-‘I thought you said the affair was over?’Ping Pong is a track with more bump than a child with measles and I defy you not to get up and start skanking -it was the proverbial banger.
So a bit of background on the man himself-well Sushi is the aka for the New Jersey native Alexander John and…well….. that is all the background info I could get. That said however I did get his latest ep The Exchange and that basically tells you all you need to know; he’s a creative producer bringing tasty big beats, agitated bass lines, intriguing samples all while mixing up genres like a particularly successful coke dealer: ’this is the real stuff brother’
Tracks that I have transferred to my playlist include the epic nearly six minute 1234567890 (seriously that’s the name of the track) complete with a dance hall/reggae vocal before the slap slap of a tight beat comes in-it’s purposeful, mellow yet somehow amped track. If you looking for out and out – tear your face off after a particularly heavy session of 10 Super Tenants then look no further than the suitably named Grenade Thru Your Window-complete with a Method Man sounding rapper-it smacks like a pimp after he learns that his ‘girl’ let the said trick go over his allocated five minutes of sordid pleasure by a whole 5 seconds!
Or how about Vice which samples that T-Pain track I’m Sprung (1995) -so damn intense?
I am not saying that Sushi will be all over the UK charts and frankly I do not want that for him but he’s a producer that I will show off with once in a while (even though I have only just come across him) because he is that damn good-you know what I mean:
Me-‘have you heard this guy before?’
Friend- ‘Nah he’s heavy though’
Me-‘Damn bros you way behind’ (I feign complete surprise at his lack of musical knowledge to add more weight to his ignorance while also making him feel that everyone else actually knows the track-it feels good because I am a very bad man).
Tectonics with Turan
Ok so from dirty beats, to music that is more suited for some meditative, thoughtful introspection with the brilliantly melancholic Turan. It’s ironic really that melancholy can bring such joy but I am feeling Turan’s creative vibe.
His name actually hit my inbox a little bit ago but of course time is not always a friend of a journalist so maybe this is a tad late but you know what I don’t care?
Turan is a rapper/producer and evidently filmographer who seems intent on forging his own lane complete with his intense creative self where the words status quo seem but a mere irritation to an artist keen to bring a visual, aural leftfield angle. It’s no surprise really that his stance is off centre being inspired by acts like the huge Radiohead.
Turan is a rapper of sorts but he’s almost in that mould of say a Tricky expounding intricately woven lyrics on top of more intricately woven lyrics while deft strings, bass drums and synths play to a beautiful climax ‘wow’.
So tracks; well the ones that have been doing the rounds are Running a piece which is definitely more about the visuals and Departed (the singer is off the chain) which is epic in every sense of the word . The video complete with close up shots of an intense Turan stares back straight at us which kind of makes you feel uncomfortable but yet intrigued all at the same time.
Anyway these two cuts have been used to promote his current debut ep which has just dropped a project called Persistence of Memory released on Tribe Records. Fitting in with his whole artistic self the EP is named after a Salvador Dali work of the same name. Off the ep one of my favourites has to be Memory a 6 minute long something which is powerful like a handshake from a billionaire or maybe it’s like that moment when you are lying down in the dark unable to sleep and you can hear your heart thumping-it’s a darkly fantastic intro before we are launched head long into some rock dnb fury to finish.
Turan (judging on this current output) is an artist who is rather profound and I even query, whether he is a rapper really or merely a man that drops streams or tightly woven consciousness. Whatever he is to you he’s defo a name to watch for in the coming years should his current trajectory stay true. In fact I will do one of my ‘stick my neck out’ moments and I will drink mercury if I am wrong and state he could win an award of some nature.
I am a Submotion Fan
So we go from one epic artist to an epic band and the 7 piece awesomeness of Submotion who take you on musical journeys of sublime quality where the need for a track to fit perfectly into that 3 minutes and a bit quota is pushed to the wayside as the track plays as long as it damn well feels like.
The outfit are from Leeds and came out in 2009 so it’s not like they are fresh but for me they are fresh because I only just came across them. Having said that once I did my research and sampled their two previous albums Finest Hour (2011) and Fragments (2012) they are evidently a band who create a sound that could be ten years old and still sound fresh -it’s like looking at your girl/wife/mistress ten years down the line after trials, tribulations and joy and still thinking ‘damn your fit’ before looking at yourself and ever so slightly pulling in your belly.
I always talk about acts who are able to fuse genres but Submotion really do just that with fearsome ease-yes you hear bits of dub-step, yes you hear bits of dance but what I really love are those bits of real sweet ambient jazz flexes and chilled back vibes-the main vocalist Ruby Wood I want as my girlfriend so I can sample that voice everyday-
‘do the washing up Semper you scum bag’
‘why of course Ruby anything for you-would you mind if you just sing a quick note for me?’
Their third album then Alium (which is in fact the Future Flavour), released on the label Counter Records ‘wow’. There’s not one track that can be called inferior indeed each and every track has its place in this body of brilliance that bellows with a deafening guttural roar that this is ‘QUALITY” . My only issue is why have this band not been recognised more and given the plaudits they so richly deserve like winning a Mercury Award-yeh I said it? Perhaps I should not worry because maybe they are not that worried about it but having taken in all of Alium on a late night listening session I can see why names like Trevor Nelson and Gilles Petersen are tripping over themselves.
Words like organic, powerful, earthy, emotional all spring to mind when thinking of this album. If I am pushed to give a favourite at the moment of writing the blog then it would probably be Trust/Lust which slowly sucks you in deeper and deeper and deeper into a RnB soul number lush-unfortunately I can’t find the track any where for you to sample it so you will just have to wait for the album release date. In the meantime check out City Lights equally amazing.
I am going to stick my neck out again and say that this album has to go down as one of the best for the year.
I am a Submotion fan and I have an addiction.
Alium Released 3rd November 2014 on Counter Records
I have a crush on Charlotte OC
Charlotte OC is a rather fetching brunette all the way from Blackburn to be exact-she’s so nice that I can feel a crush coming on-damn and there it is instant infatuation (sorry Ruby are we down for a bit of polygamy?)
I had the opportunity to see Charlotte give an intimate headline performance at the Hoxton Bar and Grill a little while back. Decked out in all black with some vertigo inducing heels on she mesmerised, engaged and performed cuts from her latest project the ep Strange and her back catalogue thus far. She was almost in a trance in fact like she was seeing some far off new world in a different dimension that was calling her.
So a bit of background well Charlotte really has set the foundations for success and with her PR agency Purple in the mix things are set to really lift off for her I am sure. Last year (like many artist) it was the self promotional and ubiquitous tool of YouTube that saw the spark for a huge stick of dynamite with the powerful Colour My Heart (remix version) -amassing some 2 million hits not bad hey-simples! Taken off her ep Heart, the ep was blessed with 4 tracks that were dangerously good-check out Hangover.
What Charlotte does well is convey raw emotions particularly on subjects regarding relationships. The raw passion and emotion that she simply oozes evidently indicates that her own life and her past relationships (I assume) form much of the inspiration for her powerful song writing which of course adds a palpable genuine quality to the music and her performances.
Charlotte is pop but of course well removed from the template for pop success created by a Simon Cowell type character intent of sucking all forms of individuality from said artist and turning them into a complete tried and tested template for the Christmas Number 1 (yuck). No, Charlotte is pop with attitude and a swagger with elements of rock, soul, soul electronica and ballads present in her work.
Strange as the latest EP I am aware of from Charlotte features the title track Strange and Hangover with two remixes of the tracks; the MoodyMan remix of Hangover is huge like Dirk Diggler. While it is essentially only two tracks on this ep, I feel this is just the calm before the inevitable storm. Indeed the question of ‘what is next for Charlotte’ is simple-well world-wide domination of course!?
Rags to Ruinz-go on my Son!
Last up we go to London and sauffffffff London (Newcross to be exact) with the multi-instrumentalist rapper/singer/producer Ruinz Ason. All these roles for sure and he does each and every role with a great deal of aplomb bringing some definite club bangers straight to the masses.
Ruinz has been bringing out tracks since 20008 when he dropped the A Hero and a Villain project which received a warm reception where Ruinz showcased his huge potential for writing tracks with strong hooks and choruses.
Ruinz’s trajectory to success is indeed a family affair and rather than some Cain and Abel antagonism, Ruinz alongside his brother J-Flames (who produces as well) have dropped 5 releases together-in fact the release Hoodstarz and Villains was described by RWD as an ‘underground classic’.
A testament to Ruinz growing popularity means support act for some of the biggest names in the UK and the Us form part of his growing cv think-Ms Dynamite, Donaeo and the brilliant hip-hop stalwart Keith Murray.
So what’s cracking for this year?
Well his latest bit of niceness is the project The DubTrap which sees Ruinz do the encouraging thing and just continue to build on production and lyrical complexity to drop a project of feet stompers but we also see a more emotional side of Ruinz and indeed a more rounded artist. Yes he is a hard chomping at the bit emcee but dare I say we see Ruinz show a softer side and indeed we see him singing. Case in point is the last track, Higher with an interesting video which I am sure takes some inspiration from that classic film Sixth Sense ‘stuttering Stanley, stuttering Stanley’. I like the fact that Ruinz challenges himself and I love that soaring feel with the production here.
It’s a tough came the music business but Ruinz definitely won’t go to rags.