AG Cook: Superstar
PC Music fans have been waiting for the official version of “Superstar” to release since RBMA Festival New York last May, when subversive pop producer AG Cook performed it live—on a grand piano. Originally written as a top-line pitch (aka melody and lyrics) for Zedd, the uplifting song veers away from maximal, over-dramatic EDM and surprisingly reveals an unusually intimate AG Cook. He wields Autotune not as a way to perfect his voice, but as a creative compositional tool mining for unpolished unnaturalness. View the futuristic 3D lyric video here below; he’ll be performing in LA’s Create Nightclub then NYC’s Output this week.
St Vincent: Golden Girls Theme Song
In an atmospheric dirge “cover” of the Golden Girls theme song “Thank You For Being a Friend,” St Vincent (aka Annie Clark) brings out something viewers of the show probably never expected. It’s a minimal, two-minute requiem that’s all haunting synths (and maybe a ghost vocal or two); it abandons the cheer completely but we can’t help but imagine Clark smiling through the whole thing.
I remade the “Golden Girls” theme song into a dirge. #thankyouforbeingafriend pic.twitter.com/1UaKx6oGgk
— St. Vincent (@st_vincent) July 11, 2016
Jim-E Stack: Deadstream
Jim-E Stack (who’s toured with Baauer, Bonobo, Nosaj Thing and more) has a fun music video for his mostly instrumental, chilled-out yet tense track “Deadstream.” It speeds through many different Vines from fans who used the song to soundtrack their video clips. Cute animals, dancing (the funky bass slaps in the song are so good), falling, many unmentionable weird moments, and even a Bernie cameo—all the requisites to satiate our very short attention spans. In its own way, the music video is a wordless, four-minute-long documentary on current American culture.
Miguel: How Many
Written in just a few hours in response to a harrowing week of violence against black people in the USA, Miguel released the beautifully minimal “How Many.” The chilling synth-soul track gets straight to the point: the first line is “I’m tired of seeing human lives turned into hashtags and prayer hands / I’m tired of watching these murderers get off.” Sadly, this message is still a timely one, and Miguel’s call to action is clear—we all need to do and say something. The LA-based singer/songwriter says he will post an updated version of the song each week until it’s complete.
Jamie Lidell: Walk Right Back
From his upcoming album Building A Beginning (his first since 2013’s self-title record), Jamie Lidell has released “Walk Right Back”—a soulful tune that’s immediately recognizable as the British-born, Nashville-based artist. With a groovy bass line, whistles and Lidell’s sublime vocals (which never quite sound effortless, but that somehow adds to the charm) this track was made for summer road trips.
ListenUp is a Cool Hunting series published every Sunday that rounds up the music we tweeted throughout the week, also found in Listen. Hear the year so far via Cool Hunting Spotify.