Deadshirt is Listening…Bringing you a rundown of our staff and guest contributors’ favorite new tracks released in the past week after they’ve had the weekend to blast them in their cars, in a club, alone in their rooms, etc.
Dominic Griffin is bumping…
“Ray Gun (featuring DOOM)”
BADBADNOTGOOD & Ghostface Killah
In addition to having arguably the most impressive solo career of any Wu-Tang Clan member, as of late Ghostface has also been the most prolific. After 2013’s 12 Reasons To Die and last year’s 36 Reasons, he’s back next month with a collaborative LP backed by the jazzy BADBADNOTGOOD. The last two salvos from Sour Soul featured guests like Elzhi and Danny Brown, but on the latest track he’s joined by DOOM, adding even more fuel to the fire that we might finally get that long gestating DOOMStarks album this year (as well as Supreme Clientele 2? Damn, Ghost. Don’t hurt ’em.)
“Ray Gun” is the perfect track if you ever wanted to hear Ghost and DOOM rap over an Adult Swimified take on Lalo Schifrin and Dizzy Gillespie’s “Free Ride,” so I guess it sounds like a Luke Cage comic done by Matt Fraction and David Aja. The verses are quick but deadly, and the instrumental outro is Orson Welles radio show levels of dramatic. I always love the live experimentation of a band working within a hip hop sound, and this is no different. If we get this and two other Ghostface albums in 2015, I’ll eat Ghost’s giant gold eagle armpiece. Quote me.
Speaking of Ghostface…lol, nah.
(NOTE: IT IS TWENTY FUCKING FIFTEEN. ARBITRARILY POINTING OUT THE TENUOUS VOCAL SIMILARITIES BETWEEN THESE OTHERWISE UNRELATED RAPPERS IS THE USELESS EQUIVALENT OF POINTING OUT HOW SUBWAY’S FIVE DOLLAR FOOTLONGS ARE REALLY ONLY 10 INCHES. IT’S TIME TO MOVE FORWARD AS A CULTURE.)
After a series of wildly enjoyable mixtapes and free release type projects, Action Bronson is finally blessing the masses with his first official studio album, Mr. Wonderful. By all accounts, it’ll still feature production from dudes like Party Supplies, and most likely not deviate from the winning formula (dope beats, dope rhymes, baffling pop culture references, food talk) that brought the bearded one to the dance. The real conversation here is Drake’s personal producer, Noah “40” Shebib, making an extremely rare non-OVO/Young Money beat placement, lacing Bron Bron with a warped, spacey instrumental that feels like an old Ratatat remix, only more soulful. I knew it was gonna be an anthem when Action said “now these motherfuckers all wanna be chubby,” a line I’ve quoted aloud on multiple occasions this week with zero provocation.
At this point, if you don’t like Action Bronson, “Actin Crazy” is NOT going to change your mind, but if you already do, it’s still a blast to hear his confidence and presence evolve, even if his subject matter and overall style remain pleasantly status quo. Could have used a Big Body Bes intro, though.
Julian Ames is wearing out his dialing finger to…
They Might Be Giants
In 1985, an unknown band consisting of two Brooklynites had the clever idea of recording songs onto the tape of an answering machine so that people would hear their music when they called the machine’s advertized number. That group was They Might Be Giants and that project was called Dial-A-Song, which surprisingly lasted until 2008, when the number was disconnected. In that timespan, They Might Be Giants released fourteen studio albums and won a Grammy (a second would come the following year). Their increase in notoriety, plus the rise of the internet, made Dial-A-Song unnecessary, but it was still sad to see it go. Now, in 2015, on the 30th anniversary of it’s inception, Dial-A-Song is back with a new phone number ((844) 387-6962), website, radio network, email subscription service, and all the songs will be uploaded to the band’s YouTube channel.
The first song off of the reincarnated Dial-A-Song is “Erase,” a bouncy power-pop rocker. Alternating angular guitars in the verse makes way for more melodic and harmonious music at the chorus, as is typical of TMBG’s poppier songs. Also typical of the band’s style are the lyrics which are mostly nonsensical, but every so often come together and reveal a deeper, and in this case more melancholy meaning; “put one box on the sidewalk then you return with the next and the first one’s gone/everyone gets on the bus out of town and the lights start going out one by one” leads into “button marked erase/when darlings must be murdered/when your heartbreak overwhelms your heart.” With a new Dial-A-Song out every week, and the band’s uncanny ability to produce quality material even after being together for over three decades, expect many more quirky and enjoyable tracks like (and unlike) “Erase.”
Dylan Roth is Walking Away from an Explosion in Slow Motion to…
NJ’s #1 guitar hero Marissa Paternoster continues to out-shred the competition, with this the fourth track to be unveiled from Screaming Females’ upcoming album, Rose Mountain. “Criminal Image” is a badass cut that you would want playing behind you while you rob a bank. From the simple, addictive hook to the fast and wild guitar solo, this is crunchy garage rock at its best. (It also helps that, during the chorus, I keep thinking Paternoster is singing “you’re a Cyyyyyylon” which adds a whole other level for me.)