Listen Up

Two meditative tracks, a hazy lament, a bit of funk and more new music this week

Your Grandparents: Pootie Tang (G.T.K.Y.)

Your Grandparents—an LA-based trio composed of vocalists Chaz Carter and DaCosta and producer ghettoblasterman—blend retro-inflected funk and electronica on their fun single, “Pootie Tang (G.T.K.Y.).” The track grooves and glides on smooth, alto-leaning harmonies, nostalgic keys, claps and upbeat percussion, sounding both familiar yet decidedly new. “The inception of ‘Pootie Tang’ all started from a true story,” shares the three-piece. “Jean was walking to his car after taking some photos with the group when he saw a stick of gum placed on his car window above the door handle. It read, ‘I hope yo fine ass is single, cause I’m tryna get to know you’… and the rest is history.”

Richard Reed Parry + Susie Ibarra: Field II: Slow Drift

A meditative music collaboration between composers Richard Reed Parry (of Arcade Fire) and Susie Ibarra, “Field II: Slow Drift” is a gently enveloping, avant-garde sound exploration. Parry and Ibarra collaborated remotely on the composition, which will appear on their forthcoming album Heart and Breath: Rhythm and Tone Fields (out 15 July). Remarkably, they used the rhythm of their heartbeats and breathing patterns to create each track on the album. “This doesn’t sound like any record I’ve ever heard,” Parry says in a statement. “There’s a sensibility to it that was enabled by remote recording, and the fact that we made our breath into music and then into samples and then we built on that to make an album.”

Steve Lacy: Bad Habit

From Steve Lacy’s upcoming album Gemini Rights (out 15 July) comes a second single, “Bad Habit.” The hazy track—a lament about not taking a chance with a romantic interest—shape-shifts into an a cappella bridge and later introduces glitchy percussion. Blending funk, electronic and R&B, it’s simultaneously soothing and invigorating.

Moor Mother: DUST TOGETHER

Musician, poet and activist Moor Mother (aka Camae Ayewa) just released Jazz Codes, a lustrous, tranquil and thoughtful album with cameos from Melanie Charles, Orion Sun, Jason Moran, AKAI SOLO, Fatboi Sharif and YUNGMORPHEUS. The 18-track record also features Wolf Weston and Aquiles Navarro on “DUST TOGETHER,” a meditative piece that meanders beautifully via freestyle horns, sporadic chimes, spoken-word and soulful vocals.

Oliver Sim: GMT

Oliver Sim’s “GMT” incorporates all the thrilling, haunting moodiness fans might expect from the British artist (and member of The xx), especially considering his upcoming album, Hideous Bastard, is inspired by his love of horror movies. Produced by bandmate Jamie xx, the song is one of the first written for the record, Sim explains in a statement. “I’d chased Jamie to Australia to escape British winter. We worked in Sydney and road tripped down to Byron Bay, stopping at secluded beaches and listening to a lot of The Beach Boys and Brian Wilson on the way. The first song we made was ‘GMT,’ sampling Brian Wilson’s ‘Smile.’ The song was written about pining over a love back home, thousands of miles apart on different time zones. It’s also a love letter to London.”

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 MOOR MOTHER