Songs of the Week: Hookers, Heartbreak, Nicolas Cage, Revenge-Pop, and R.I.P. B.I.G.
Lushlife featuring Styles P, “Still I Hear the Word Progress”
Do not ask yourself how the hell indie cloud-rap MC Lushlife get The Lox’s hard-as-hell Styles P to drop a feature on his new track; just be glad that it has happened. Seriously: This thing is worth your time just to hear P yell “D-Block!” over what sounds — for a bit, before the Nintendo sound effects kick in — like Antony and the Johnsons.
Action Bronson & Party Supplies, “Hookers at the Point” (NSFW)
Warning! NSFW! Action takes us back to the mean streets of HBO’s Hookers and Johns, and the results are not pleasant. One would like to believe that this is ethically motivated, that our dude is attempting to spotlight the torturous life of American sex workers via the form of an entertaining narrative rap video. But, really, who knows? Maybe Bronson just really wanted an excuse to rock a giant fur coat, a Kazaam hat, and a pinky ring.
s/s/s, “Museum Day”
To anyone who has written Sufjan Stevens off as whisper-y and boring: wrong! You are wrong! In his latter-day formation — as seen on this new side project, in which he’s coupled up with Son Lux and Serengeti — Sufjan has been busting out the AutoTune on T-Painesque levels, and the result, more often than not, is excellently creepy electro-pop.
Frank Ocean, “Thinking About You”
This song surfaced months back, was pulled, was briefly reborn as a Bridget Kelly song — and, now, finally, has been officially released as a Frank track. And — oh, goodness, everyone else give up. When he busts out the falsetto? Ladies of the world: Please continue breaking Frank Ocean’s heart.
Sleigh Bells, “Irreplaceable”
What if Ne-Yo, who wrote the song, had kept “Irreplaceable” for himself? (He has said he sort of, somewhat, maybe kind of regrets giving that one away.) Well, we would be living in a world where Beyoncé did not sing “Irreplaceable.” And I don’t know about you, friend, but that is not a world I want to be living in. OK, new law: Beyoncé gets first look at every great song written for as long as she wants.
Beach House, “Myth”
Beach House’s last album was called Teen Dream, and was released only some months before Katy Perry dropped her own Teenage Dream. Teenage Dream, of course, would become a historically epic pop blockbuster (five no. 1 singles from one album is no joke), and would lay waste to the cultural significance of any other similarly named album in any other genre. The only way the indie-pop duo can now claim revenge? They change the title of their upcoming album from Bloom to Teenager’s Dream (or something similar), and then proceed to own the radio and the charts for the next 14 months. We believe in you, Beach House!
The Walkmen, U2 medley
In 2006, The Walkmen released Pussy Cats, a full, song-by-song rendition of Harry Nilsson’s 1974 release of the same name — an album produced by John Lennon during his awesome “Lost Weekend,” and itself full of other people’s songs — and cemented their reputation as the masters of the “sloppy I-have-no-idea-if-they-are-they-shitting-on-this-or-if-they-legitimately-like-it” cover. And just in case you thought they’ve lost a step, here comes a wondrously off U2 medley to banish any such thoughts. (Listen here).
Roc Marciano, “Poltergeist”
Marciano says his “chest is a igloo,” shouts out Liz Claiborne, and compares himself in the positive both to John Travolta and Nic Cage. And while we’re on the topic of women’s clothing: How come Lily Pulitzer never gets any rap love?
Gucci Mane’s “Lemonade” > the drink lemonade > the band Lemonade.
Biggie, “Big Poppa”
The greatest rapper of all time died on March 9.