Music Is My Saviour
Shawn Mims’ rags-to-riches rapping and production is less bombastic but just as hot as his NYC namesake Shawn Carter (Jay Z). His debut has a phat minimal sound (Miami’s Blackout Movement assist on production duties), and plenty of unexpected twists: King Crimson samples (‘Doctor Doctor’), and an appearance from ragga MC Junior Reid.
ipod essential: This Is Why I’m Hot
Unintentionally hilarious (very Gervais) but undeniably passionate secular MOR from black leather jacket clad Christian rocker Brian Platt. Full of those purposefully ambiguous Christian ‘love’ songs : ‘I’m looking away from the lies and turning towards truth/Knowing that only your love is strong to carry me”. Is he singing about a girl or Jesus?’.
ipod essential: Straightline
With a new generation of indie dance acts presently riding a wave of critical approval, baggy pioneers Happy Mondays time their return impeccably. Bleary-eyed genius Sean Ryder is now clean living (reputedly), but can still dial up his ecstatic nonsense whenever required: ‘It’s good to press my tits against the floor’ he sings on opener ‘Jellybean’. Vintage stuff.
ipod essential: In The Blood
Savath & Savalas
The music of Scott Herren (aka Prefuse 73) has a tendency to sound better on paper than on your stereo. As Savath & Savalas, the pace barely shifts above a drift as he seeks to combine ‘interesting’ art music with a latin/Balearic feel. You can let it all wash over you, but equally it bears a closer listen.
ipod essential – Ya Verdad