The 6 Songs You Need to Hear This Week
Check out the best tracks, videos, mixtapes and releases that came across our desks this week.
At the end of every week, we’ll be highlighting the creme of the crop in music and rounding up the best tracks, videos, mixtapes and releases that came across our desks throughout the last few days.
Check out this week’s selections below.
Joey Le Soldat's beautiful Kampala video for "Travell"
It's been a minute since we've heard from Joey Le Soldat, the Burkinabé rapper who released one of our favorite music videos of 2014.
The MC comes back strong with "Travell," a dizzying and head-nod-inducing new single produced by Redrum. Its accompanying music video, which we're premiering here today, takes things to Uganda and features some beautiful aerial shots of the sprawling city of Kampala.
"It's true that for so many years we have been deported from our land to be sold as sheep, to be sold as chickens, so they fought big cities, big economies to our detriment. Yes, our past will not be changed, but we can change our future. Change our tomorrows. Africa Wake Up!," Joey Le Soldat raps in his new single.
Check out the video for "Travell," directed by Moja Reeves, above.
Ethiopian R&B singer Mélat returns with MéVen
Album cover for Mélat's MeVen.
Texas-based Ethiopian singer Mélat first caught our attention with her hazy and seductive pop compositions last year.
The singer's now dropped her 11-song debut album, MéVen—a collection of personal and modern R&B songs that explore several angles of her Ethiopian heritage (it also features her first full song in Amharic).
Check out two of the album's standouts "Konjo," featuring Xavier Omär, and "Sit Down" alongside Sylvan Lacue below. Hear MéVen in its entirety on Spotify and Apple Music. It's well worth it.
Wizkid links up with DJ Maphorisa and R2bees
The "real Starboy"Wizkid has been pretty active throughout a week that's seen a lot of talk about another "Starboy."
First up, Wizkid linked up with South Africa's DJ Maphorisa for "Good Love," a catchy new collaboration about a special lover built on booming bass hits and piano loops. The two stars had previously gotten together for "Soweto Baby."
Secondly, Wizkid connects with Ghana's R2bees for the Legendury Beatz-produced "Tonight." The stronger of the two new tracks, this one sees the Ghanaian duo and Starboy delivering another potential hit and—definitely—one for the weekend's dance floors.
Speaking of DJ Maphorisa, he helped produced this latest jam from fellow South Africans Mafikizolo.
"Kucheza" is a vibrant collaboration between the South African pop duo, which features writing from Tanzania's Vanessa Mdee and Kly. It's about still longing for someone the morning after a night out, losing control.
Awaken, My Love!
Childish Gambino aka Donald Glover threw everyone a (welcomed) curveball with the release of his funk-infused album Awaken, My Love!
We'll quote Questlove's Instagram post on this one, "Jesus Christ the co-author of #WearwolfBarmitzvah just SONNED the shit outta me. In the best way possible. I was NOT expecting a trip to Detroit circa 1972 at United Sound Studios. I haven't written or been stunned by an album I wasn't expecting since that time I got an advance of #BackToBlack. The music is so lush man, I can see the kaleidoscope color mesh of the #Westbound logo. Dude I can't curb my enthusiasm."
The album's cover art is striking too. It was shot by NYC-based photographer Ibra Ake and features Kenyan model Giannina Oteto, as well as lighting from Brad Ogbonna.
Glover's had quite a year with this and the success of Atlanta.
LuciMonét & Mista Silva's East London afrobeats anthem
East London's LuciMonét links up with Mista Silva for this addictive new afrobeats tune, "Ijo."
Luci Monét mentions: “the title ‘Ijo’ means dance, and although the song tells a love story, I didn’t want that to be the main focus, I wanted the dance aspect of the record to take a lead role. Being of Nigerian descent, our music is very much about dancing, from the rhythm to the melodies, and it means a lot to me, to be able to showcase that side of my background and roots.”