The Golden Filter: Kill Me (John Talabot Remix)
NYC electronic music duo The Golden Filter’s song “Kill Me” causes shivers with vocals veiled in reverb and eerie, bare synths (with an even more disturbing music video depicting a mother’s overboard obsession with her son—a metaphor for unhealthy, deceitful relationships). Spanish DJ and producer John Talabot makes the dark tune more danceable, with a hypnotizing, wavering synth melody as its backbone, but preserving its raw emotion. The remix was reissued by Munich-based label Permanent Vacation this week in Volume 3 of their compilation series, and it’s available for the first time on 12″ vinyl.
NPR Tiny Desk Concert: T-Pain
With hits like “Bartender” and “Buy You a Drank,” T-Pain has wooed fans with his trademark Auto-Tune crooning. But at a recent Tiny Desk Concert at NPR (a series that hosts intimate, often stripped down, performances at Bob Boilen’s desk), the Grammy Award-winning artist surprised many by singing with just a pianist. No Auto-Tune, no effects—just his own voice, and his ballad version of “Buy U A Drank” will give you both goosebumps and have you demanding more Auto-Tune-free T-Pain. Like a true creative, T-Pain uses Auto-Tune not to fix wrong pitches or sound perfect, but as a tool to “sound different,” as he tells NPR.
Clash DJ Mix: Wolf + Lamb
In their recent one-hour mix for London’s Clash Music, Brooklyn-based duo Wolf + Lamb (producers Zev Le Wolfe and Gadi Mizrahi) delivers an enticing bite-sized sample of the sound that has made them famous over the years. Their seemingly innate talent for layering seriously hedonistic undertones with blithely funky beats has led the pair to become a highly sought-after dance floor companion. But for the unaware, these two do more than DJ—they’re not only responsible for some of NYC’s best parties at their underground venue Marcy Hotel, but their label is home to artists Deniz Kurtel, Soul Clap, Tanner Ross, Nicolas Jaar, Seth Troxler and more.
BenZel: Four (feat. Juicy J + Cashmere Cat)
When BenZel jumped on the scene in 2012 with their production for Jessie Ware’s Brownstone cover (and ultimately her last album), fans were surprised to see she’d tapped a previously unheard of talent, but even more stunned to read they were teenagers. Whether Osaka-born Umi Takahashi and Yoko Watanabe’s bio is an absolute truth, one thing is certain: they sure know how to make a modern R&B hit. This time they enlisted rap veteran Juicy J (of Three 6 Mafia fame) and the Norwegian electronic DJ Cashmere Cat for “Four”—a perfect combination of gritty hip-hop (both vocally and lyrically) and smoothed out beats.
Glass Candy: Halloween
While decidedly holiday appropriate, “Halloween” is a tune you could throw on any time of year. Released in 2011 by Glass Candy, which is comprised of Portland-based vocalist Ida No and guitarist Johnny Jewel (who founded the record label Italians Do It Better and is also part of Chromatics), the song—allegedly an homage to the classic John Carpenter flick—is just eerie enough to kick on and dance to like a zombie while melodious enough not to scare off any ‘fraidy cats. Mwahahahah!
ListenUp is a Cool Hunting series published every Sunday that takes a deeper look at the music we Tweeted throughout the week. Often we’ll include a musician or notable fan’s personal favorite in a song or album dubbed #PrivateJam. Hear them all in our ListenUp playlist on Spotify.