PURSES (including members of bands like District Attorneys, Party Dolls, Modern Skirts, Grand Vapids, Blue Blood, Crooked Fingers, and more) made a catchy debut with their “Hitchhiker/Wheels on the Run” double-single. Newest single “Clementine” offers further proof that their debut record should contain equal parts jangle, indie pop guitars, noise, harmonies, and anything else in between. “Clementine” offers a new facet of the band’s sound, as they explore some push-and-pull dynamics. Guitars stab through the song’s quiet vibe, building up to walls of sound and ebbing again before coalescing into an insistent lead line to close things out. B-side “White Wire Handle” feels more down-home, with a lo-fi treatment on the vocals and a four-to-the-floor arrangement that lands just on this side of IRS-era R.E.M.
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The muffled shuffle of Adian Coker’s “Been There” begins with a minimal line of percussion, soon eased into a more wholesome groove of metronomic hip-hop. This sampling of the South London rapper’s impressive talents features on his latest EP, Time Out of Mind, which has already gained some traction in his native UK. Having explored a gamut of pop-music styles, Coker’s hip-hop rests comfortably in a secured space of influences pooling from both sides of the Atlantic. There is indeed a good chunk of East Coast hip-hop in his work that is essentially the tether of which the grime, dubstep and electro-funk elements are attached.
An amusingly cryptic narrative of Dadaist assemblage, Turkey’s hip-hop supergroup, 90BPM, presents the video clip for their second single from their premiere album, Kötülük Bizim Işimiz, a collection of alternative hip-hop that explores everything from Turkish funk to Prince Paul-styled turntablism.
“What a shitty life!”
When Italian pop singer Levante sang those words (che vita di merda!) in “Alfonso”, her 2013 smash hit, she caught the mood of her generation and her country. The song dominated the airwaves and social media that summer, and for good reason. It’s a totally infectious piece of pop-rock, but there are dark undercurrents to its surface sunniness. Levante sings about a boring birthday party, where she doesn’t even know the titular guest—but she wishes the “asshole” a happy birthday anyway.