The Macho Edit
Our favourite music releases shared weekly.
NSG Ft. Unknown T
The NSG guys team up with Unknown T for some feel good music, with Unknown T showing off a slightly different side to his vocals. Playing homage to their hometowns Hackney and Ghana, the visuals directed by Kevin Hudson are a taste of a summer far away.
Northampton rapper Slowthai announces his new album, TYRON, which is set to release in February 2021. Slowthai teases of what's to come with latest release 'nhs', paying tribute to the National Health Service. The single delves into recent events, and shares Slowthai's experience in coming to terms with what we've been given, and how to show gratitude for life before it's too late.
Bonobo, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs
Bonobo, aka Simon Green, launched his own record label OUTLIER in collaboration with Ninja Tune in September, with the lively debut release ‘Heartbreak’ – a collab track with Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs. The pair have joined forces again for the second OUTLIER release ‘6000 Ft.’, which is more relaxed in feel; a lovely slow-builder with soft vocals, piano trills and a signature Bonobo beat.
Bay Be Blu (EP)
Bay Be Blue is the latest five-track release from Amsterdam-based producer Nachtbraker.Released on his own personal Nachtbraker
imprint, this experimental electronic EP is upbeat and funky with a strong 80s feel – straight out of NYC Downlow. Its title track, both the original and the 12-inch mix, is the star of the show.
Everything You Need
Everything U Need is Overmono’s first release since their collaborative singles with Joy Orbison came out a year ago. Back in the driver’s seat, the Russell brothers return this time with an impressive four-track EP. Stand out tracks include ‘Everything U Need’ and ‘Clipper (Another 5 Years)’ which exude pensive, nostalgic energy through their off-beat strumming basslines and warped vocal snippets.
A Weekend With (EP)
British-Yemeni artist H’ANA’s latest EP, A Weekend With, is a vibesy ode to weekend feels. Full of mellifluous vocals, sultry delivery and head-bopping instrumentals, this is undoubtedly H’ANA’s most impressive drop to date, and further proof that the future looks bright for this soulful up-and-comer.
Emil and Knucks
This latest jazzy symphony by South East London producer Emil, calls upon fellow UK artist Knucks for some laid-back rap. Check out Emil’s EP Ambrosia for more two-sided compositions and all-round soulful goodness.
Tide/ Minnoch (EP)
Hunee returns from his production hiatus with a bang. Tide
and Minnoch comprise his slick new 2-track EP, featuring lots of funky syncopated beats, synthy metallic wobbles and sultry lilting basslines. More upbeat than some of Hunee’s previous outputs, these tracks were undoubtedly made for the club. Let’s hope they can reach their potential soon.
The latest in a string of 2020 releases from Huxley, Nothing
Works serves up some serious big room techno energy. This is a high-tempo thumper, interlaced with unrelenting high-hats, a driving beat and echoing vocal sample loops whispering “Don’t say nothing”. The acid switch-up mid-track steps it up a notch, elevating it to Berlin industrial heavyweight status.
Sometimes you don’t even need to hear the tune to know that a collaboration’s going to work – the flavours just make sense. Such is the case with TO THE LEFT – South London rapper/producer SKT’s latest release with House of Pharaoh’s affiliate Mally. The Italian rising star’s bombastic lyricism, slick delivery and energetic production provide an ingenious complement to Mally’s laid-back bass tones.
In Cosmic Transmission, the second LP from Zenker Brothers, released via their own Ilian Tape imprint, the Munich-based techno trailblazers offer up an album for the age of home listening. Four-to-the-floor dancefloor-oriented rhythms are here replaced with a more thoughtful, atmospheric sensibility that rewards multiple listenings.
Pa Salieu dedicates his latest release, B***K to blackmindsmatter.uk. The new single and its accompanying music video (directed by Meeks + Frost) offers up some powerful lyrics as well as visual references to the best of Black culture, emphasising Salieu’s pride in being a Black man.
Sultry vocals and squelchy basslines abound in this latest single from heavily touted British-Ghanaian producer Lijah. The Bristolian beat maker is joined on the track – which is due to appear on Lijah’s upcoming album Brighter Days, I seek, due for release in 2021 – by the mellifluous Jaydonclover and High Focus-affiliated rap group CMPND’s very own Vitamin G, who delivers with two strong verses.
Eloise Massimo’s dreamy new single is a euphoric celebration of the joys of moving on to pastures new. In something of a divergence from the soul tonalities of her two previous releases, Massimo here comes through with a distinctly pop-oriented sound; clear evidence of her versatility as an artist. The one thing that has remained consistent however is the quality, and we can’t wait to see what’s next for this promising singer-songwriter.
Since celebrating freedom, Potter Payper’s work rate has been immense, following up from his 2020 Vision EP with Training Day 3: the long-anticipated final segment of the Training Day trilogy. The 24-track mixtape is full of authentic beats, some of which had been put on hold during his time behind bars.
Following the release of collaborative project Freddy Vs. Jasoon with ZACTHENEEK, Yems01 brings us Mood. Expect interludes from American rapper MrHeadA$$Trendy on this electronic type beat, as well as samples from the well-known adult animation sci-fi sitcom Rick & Morty.
Asha Gold’s new track Debut – composed via Zoom with producer, Mitch Jones – is a straight-up slice of Summer energy. Meditating on the unfamiliar feelings of first love, Gold’s trademark introspective lyricism is here delivered with an astute sensitivity to the cadences and rhythms of the language she uses. The beat – an addictive cocktail of bubbling percussion and distorted brass – provides the perfect accompaniment to yet another impressive track from this rising star in the UK R&B world.
The last few years have seen a conveyor belt of bangers leaving the camp of one of Chicago’s most original and exciting voices, Tobi Lou. Endorphins is no different – a combination of melancholic vocals and high-energy, dance-focused production, this will leave fans of the Nigerian-born visionary drooling in anticipation of his upcoming album, Parrish Blue.
Having originally released a minute-long track of this name last year as part of his 4 Mins in Brazil series, the Coventry-based crooner has enlisted the help of south-east London’s J Warner to transform that delectable musical morsel into a fully-fledged meal. This truly is sunshine in a song.
Fresh off the back of his well-received sophomore EP, Blue is My Favourite Colour, Theodor Black speaks truth to power with his latest release, a hard-hitting and urgent cry against the perpetuation of racial prejudices by the apparatus of government. Trading in the jazzy instrumentals and poetic introspection of his recent EP for a more stripped back, austere tone, the South London rapper shows once again why he has been on the end of a deluge of commendations over the past year – a trend which only looks set to continue.
Ugandan-born, Swedish-raised artist IAMSUUBI turns his gaze inwards for this deeply personal and introspective EP. What is perhaps most impressive about this anatomisation of heartache and its various stages however, is its tonal and technical range. From the futuristic, melancholy soundscape of a track like Talk About It (My Apology), to the bass weight and dancefloor sensibilities of Save My Soul (My Confession), and the J-Cole-infused lyricism of Closure (Conclusion), this latest release from the A.S.U.N.D.R. affiliate is as impressive as it is intimate.
Don Mans Dance
Octavian, Gunna, SAINt JHN
Following the success of his collaborative banger Fxcked Up, Knucks is here to bless our ears once again with new track Thames. This smooth, saxophone-tinged release is an instant classic. With wordplay galore and flawless delivery throughout, this is just the type of work that we have come to expect from one of the hottest artists in the UK scene.
Fresh off the back of his hard-hitting single Next Up comes this new freestyle from up-and-coming UK rapper, Don Pacino. In Don Mans Dance the US-inspired trap flows of his previous release are replaced with distinctively UK-focused drill rhythms, as Pacino looks to demonstrate his artistic versatility. He does this with great effect, delivering his head-bobbing bars with real energy. We look forward to seeing what’s next.
In a continuation of Octavian’s recent trend towards stateside collaboration, the British-French rapper has called on US artists Gunna and SAINt JHN for the latest teaser track from his upcoming debut studio album. In Famous, the trio speak on the notion of fame and its inevitable downsides – something no doubt all too familiar to these three artists following their meteoric ascendancies over the past couple of years.
Bit Of Me
Lala &ce | A COLORS show
In anticipation of the release of his new album Crabs in a Bucket on the 28th August, Nines brings us teaser track, Clout. The accompanying video playfully riffs on the hype surrounding the upcoming album, featuring a succession of cleverly reconstructed tableaus of some of the most iconic album covers from the rap hall of fame. The track itself is everything we’ve come to expect from Nines – bragadocious bars delivered in gravelly tones over a punchy beat.
East London-based artist Cloudy’s debut single, Bit of Me, represents an assured start to proceedings for a rapper who we’re sure to be hearing a lot more from in years to come. The combination of melodic flows and afrobeat rhythms is difficult to resist.
Parapluie. Now an established name within the international music scene, Lala &ce’s collection of rap, trap and afrobeat singles will have you singing in French in no time. French rap artist Lala &ce takes to the COLORS Studio for an exclusive performance of her dreamy new single
Tears, sweat, blood
Blending clean pop melodies and modern hip-hop rhythms to great effect, Demons represents an auspicious start to life for London-based collective A.S.U.N.D.R.. As individual artists, Ella Eliza, Casj Lee and IAMSUUBI (whose upcoming EP WHO I AM is due out later this month) have already begun to turn heads in the industry, and judging by the calibre of the production on this debut release, it’s clear to see why.
West London’s multifaceted DJ p-rallel is back with his latest EP Soundboy, featuring the likes of soul songstress Greentea Peng and Lord Apex. With a mix of reggae and feel-good jazz instrumentals, this EP is the ultimate summer chill mix.
South-East Londoner DC raps over a garage beat by frequent collaborator TobiShyBoy (TSB). Putting pen to paper for this poetical melody, DC expresses the importance of achieving personal goals, and reflects on his years spent grinding.
Don't Force The Sauce (album)
Milo G ft. Dámì Sule
Bawo, Kxmel ft. Danny Sanchez
One of raps most exciting UK talents Frsh, releases his debut mixtape Don’t Force the Sauce. Listen out for some of our favourites on the 10-track album, such as Made It and Somewhere Else.
In an animated visual released alongside this new lo-fi-esque beat, Good Life, Mancunian artist Dámì Sule and producer Milo G can be seen soaking up the sun on a tropical island.
Expect plenty of football talk, and some clever wordplay, in this smooth beat produced by Kxmel, featuring Bawo and Danny Sanchez on vocals.
Since their first album in 2015, Afriquoi have established themselves as an afro supergroup, fusing African instruments and sounds with UK electronic undertones, drawing on elements of house, soca, hip-hop, soul and jungle to create a sound that is entirely unique. Their new EP, Time Is A Gift Which We Share All The Time, feels like a ray of sunshine in these gloomy times. This is also the first ever Afriquoi release where the whole band has gone into the studio to record their full live sound, allowing each member’s individual instruments – including Congolese guitar, Gambian kora and African Djembe – and talent to shine.
Acid Attack is the uplifting opening track, featuring elements of Mandinka musical patterns and UK house music. With a djembé-fueled groove and lyrics sung in the Mandinka language of Gambia and Southern Senegal, the melee of sounds is meshed and layered seamlessly throughout, creating a rousing crescendo.
This high-energy intro is followed by Ndeke Solo, the stand-out track of the EP where the vocals and scintillating guitar take centre stage, flitting playfully between solo and ensemble sections. The title of the EP, Time Is A Gift Which We Share All The Time, takes its name from a line in this track, and serves to remind us of the gift of life and the intimate connection between all things.
Bayeke provides a beautiful interlude, featuring a steady, bubbling rhythm invoking visions of sunset scenes overlooking still water, a gentle warm breeze blowing in the dusky air. The vocals at the end fade and simmer out softly, like the moment when the sun disappears from the sky. The petered-out vocals lead into Sam Sam, another sultry, slow-burning track that gradually builds as it goes on. The group vocals make it feel as though we’re all moving forward together, shifting towards something new and exciting on the horizon, setting the scene nicely for the finale.
The EP closes with a rapturous remix of earlier track Ndeke Solo by French band Voilaaa. Voilaaa brings funky synth-y piano chords, delicate brass sounds and lilting drums into the mix, lifting the original track perfectly and making it party ready. Afriquoi’s new EP never fails to put a smile on your face from start to finish, making you want to get up and dance. As with all their music, it will be best enjoyed live with the full band experience so you can feel the full force of their infectious energy.
Time Is A Gift Which We Share All The Time (EP)
Wesson Desir is ready to share his debut track .22, which was released alongside a music video that complements the lyrics through a theme of duality. The laid-back delivery and coherent flow establishes the artist’s creative talent.
PAWSA’s latest track SHUBZ brings his signature fearsome energy to a catchy distorted vocal and thumping beat, which as the title suggests, makes you feel as though you’re in the middle of a lively shubz. With this being his fourth release of 2020 so far, the young London-based producer is not wasting any time, churning out groovy tunes built for dancefloors that we can only dream of. PAWSA’s consistently strong output of upbeat tech-house tracks confirms his place as one of the top producers in the British electronic music scene right now.
4-track EP Balance comes from South East London's latest talent, Juu. From lover-boy vibes in Alia's Interlude to brazen flows in Booth, this AIME favourite shows off his impressive versatility behind the mic and establishes himself as one of our artists to watch for 2020.
Never Come Back (Four Tet remix)
Four Tet, king of remixes, has lent his hand to Never Come Back, one of the standout tracks from good friend Caribou’s latest album Suddenly. In a similar style to his own track For These Times, Four Tet reworks Never Come Back with rolling high hats to accent the looping vocals, whilst also integrating uplifting piano chords to accompany the acid bassline. The result? 7min45secs of pure bliss – a progressive, euphoric track perfect for both a festival closing set or an intimate Brixton academy live show. Let it wash over you with eyes closed, hands in the air, and a big smile on your face.
Almost An Adult (LP)
Croydon rapper Jords teases his 10-track LP with the flawless 8-minute long film Almost An Adult. The film takes us through tracks from the already released soundtrack such as Halos and Rose Tinted Glasses all the way through to Patterned. Bringing the EP to life, some incredible cinematography invites us to learn more about Jords’s life in homeland Jamaica. The Almost An Adult LP drops on 15th May 2020, and features the likes of Thea Gajic, Jaz Karis and Dotty.
Luca Santamaria & J Rhys
Filled with well-crafted hip hop beats, producer Luca Santamaria creates a 10-track mixtape with rapper J Rhys. The tape contains features from Dfunds and Laurel Smith.
Lost In June (EP)
Mazz & Phil
English singer/songwriter Pip Millett releases her latest EP Lost In June, laced with soulful melodies and poetic lyricism. Single June – an ode to her grandmother – feels purposefully significant at this current moment in time, evoking memories of much simpler times. Listen out for some pearls of wisdom share by her mother Judith Millett throughout.
New on the scene is Mazz, a singer/songwriter from the UK. Her latest EP Overcast is in collaboration with fellow artist and friend Phil, who like Mazz, is also part of Escape Plan collective. The EP has been a chance for the duo to explore different genres whilst also finding ways to maintain their definitive style throughout. The project presents the perfect sad/happy fusion, with tracks like Disassociate and With U matching soulful undertones with DnB beats.
The first release of 2020 for Damola with Ciao Bella provides a strong Latin vibe complementing his natural relaxed flow. He incorporates references to Money Heist, the well-known Netflix heist crime series that adopts the same mantra.
Mall Grab | Boiler Room | 56:12
One of the very first DJ’s to kick off streaming from isolation was Australia’s Mall Grab. We are invited to join the DJ in his bedroom for a mix lasting 56 minutes. As well as playing his most popular tracks, we are also given a preview of unreleased tunes from MG’s catalogue, shared here for the very first time.
Four Tet | Boiler Room | 1:07:43
What starts off like an opening scene to a thriller in the woods, turns out to be a set from Four Tet – master of solitary dance music. The set gets a 10/10 for creativity, starting off as a guided tour from the man himself, leading us through a forest and into a house located in the middle of nowhere, where he plays his hour long hard-hitting mix. Expect classic tracks from the likes of Caribou, mixed in with electronica and hazy synths.
Streamed from isolation
Monty & Visages | 1985 Music | 2:20:01
Even though this live stream aired just before lockdown, we had to include it. In celebration of Monty’s new EP Blinded he treats us to an at home set with fellow DnB DJ, Visages. It’s the perfect mix of liquid with catchy basslines and an unparalleled groove. Monty’s sets are famous for their diversity and high energy. This one will not disappoint.
Anabel Englund Home Sessions | Mixmag | 59:20
If you’re stuck for an hour long mix to have on in the background whilst you work out, WFH or just to chill to, then this is the one. Somewhere in sunny California Anabel Englund brings us a mix with a contemporary house vibe streamed from her super chic pad. This carefree beat would normally be the perfect poolside mix, so it’s bound to get you dreaming about day raves in the sun.
Woddd | Yoyaku Record Store | 1:59:01
This mix is brought to us by the Yoyaku record store/label in Paris, known as the city’s vinyl haven and promoter of underground talent. Parisian DJ Woddd plays us his effortlessly fluid and energetic set from within the empty store, accompanied by light background visuals. Expect low-fi sounds and minimal techno.
OK WILLIAMS | Mixmag | 59:39
Next up we have OK WILLIAMS, the emerging NTS radio DJ who has been making serious movements within the London party scene. Following on from her debut boiler room set back in November, she brings us an hour long set from Mixmag’s The Lab LDN lockdown special. Once again OK WILLIAMS showcases her unique ability to combine R&B and Afrobeat influences with up-tempo beats – fair enough!
Too Good – Asha Gold
An AIME X NJB Films: the official music video for 'Too Good' by Asha Gold.
Direction & styling Madalena Hernandez
Videographer Nick Bailey
Hair & makeup Phebe Checks
Assistance Maxine Ntambwe, Imogen Chong & Ellie Laches
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