Listen Up

From sultry funk to powerful soul, our favorite new music this week

Robert Glasper feat. YEBBA: Over

From pianist, songwriter and producer Robert Glasper’s long-awaited third installment of his Black Radio series (which debuted in 2010), “Over” features vocals by YEBBA. The two previously collaborated on “Fuck Yo Feelings” in 2019, and this new track carries with it all the soul and vibrancy fans of both artists would expect. Glasper tells Martin Johnson at TIDAL, “When I made Black Radio one and two, that was on the heels of Obama… And then making this was at the end of Trump, so it’s a different, different vibe out there. And with everything going on, with the police shootings and George Floyd and you name it, everything… so many things are happening. As an artist, when these things are happening, you have a choice to make: It’s like, do I make an album and really address this stuff?”

Moise: Burn You Out

Minneapolis-based singer-songwriter Moise is poised to release his album We Survived the Storm Vol. 1 (out in May) and from it comes the ’70s-leaning “Burn You Out.” The super-funky, luminous track was partly inspired by legendary artist Prince. Describing the track, Moise says, “This song invites a feeling of euphoria and funk. A reminder that music is meant to make people be in love with the rhythm and the words to make them dance.”

Nilüfer Yanya: The Dealer

The fourth release from Nilüfer Yanya’s Painless (the follow-up to her 2019 debut, Miss Universe, and seven-track 2021 album, Inside Out), “The Dealer” is a vibrant, ’90s-influenced track that shimmers. She says, “When I was writing this song I was thinking about the transient nature of life and the cyclical nature of the seasons. I find it interesting how we attach certain memories and feelings to different seasons and tend to revisit them time and time again, yet our lives move in a more linear motion and even when we feel like we are going back we never really get to go back anywhere. Musically speaking it’s a bit more playful and relaxed.”

Tank and the Bangas: Stolen Fruit

From New Orleans-based Tank And The Bangas comes “Stolen Fruit,” a soulful single that honors Black History Month. Vocalist Tarriona “Tank” Ball explains in a statement, “‘Stolen Fruit’ is basically about the slave trade. There’s ‘Strange Fruit,’ and I call this one ‘Stolen Fruit,’ because not only were the fruit strange, but they were also stolen. They weren’t from here.” The powerful track—which will appear on Tank and the Bangas’ forthcoming third studio album, Red Balloon, out 13 May—debuts with an exquisite music video, directed by Sontenish Myers, which couples kinetic cinematography by Bron Moyi with dynamic choreography by Maya Taylor.

strongboi: fool around

Berlin-based duo strongboi (composed of longtime friends Ziv and Alice) have released the playful single “fool around,” the first off their forthcoming debut album, out this spring. strongboi recorded the chill but buoyant bop at a studio they built together in East Berlin. It’s a pleasant taste of what’s to come from the emerging act.

Anderson Rocio: My World

New Zealand-raised, LA-based recording artist Anderson Rocio returns with an exuberant video for her brand new single, “My World.” The thoughtful pop track is accompanied by celebratory footage from Elysian Park that underscores its bright message. “We care so much about what people think all the time that we forget to just have fun,” Rocio tells us. “To remember, as kids, we used to ask questions, and get lost in our imaginations, to be unapologetically us. ‘My World’ is a reminder for me that we are all different, and to be excited about that. To jump up and down and let everyone know that, ‘I like what it feels like when my world doesn’t look like the rest!'”

Mallrat: Teeth

Quite the divergence for Brisbane, Australia-based artist Mallrat (aka Grace Shaw), “Teeth” sets a different tone from her other work and also teases her highly anticipated debut LP, Butterfly Blue. This new track is saturated in ‘90s alt-rock and grunge influences, but as Shaw says, “I like to think that if ‘Teeth’ was out in 2004 it would be on The OC soundtrack.” Equal parts gloomy and vibrant, the track pleasingly demonstrates we might not know what to expect from a Mallrat album.

Kai Landre feat. Hot Sugar: Cyborg

Barcelona-based recording artist Kai Landre has just released his six-track Cyborg EP, an exploration of his own transformation from human to cyborg (through the surgical adoption of a technology that allows him to listen to cosmic rays). From the gentle leading track, “Human (Intro)” to the dance floor-ready banger, “FEVER,” the entire EP ensnares listeners with enticing, often unexpected sounds. The eerily angelic closing track, aptly named “Cyborg,” created with producer Hot Sugar, is a stand-out, and was produced entirely using cosmic rays that Landre recorded.

Listen Up is published every Sunday and rounds up the new music we found throughout the week. Hear the year so far on our Spotify channel. Hero image courtesy of Tank and the Bangas