Songs of the Week: DMX Gets an Assist From Dr. Drew

DMX, “Keep Your Head Up”

What part of “DMX debuts his first post-prison single on Dr. Drew’s Life Changers backed by a small gospel choir” do you not understand? Dr. Drew says: “That’s what we’re talking about!”

Rihanna, “You Da One”

According to people on the Internet who have already heard it, Rihanna’s upcoming album Talk That Talk is, like, extremely dirty. VH1: “A record that not only oozes sex, but also revolves almost exclusively around it.” Sounds great! Only problem: that makes “You Da One,” the totally adequate, non-sexy, Dr. Luke-produced second single that was released earlier today, a bit of a letdown.

The Antlers, “VCR”

The xx are everywhere! Being sampled by Drake, being sampled by Rihanna, announcing follow-ups to classic debuts. Here they are being covered by fellow indie stars the Antlers, whose version of “VCR” roughts up the original’s edges a bit. Considering the perfectly sterile stillness of the xx’s version, listening to this is like watching someone throw a bucket of spaghetti against a white wall.

Juvenile, “Power” feat. Rick Ross

In case you were concerned: Juvenile is totally cool with “Practice,” Drake’s mopey take on Juvie’s 1999 smash “Back That Azz Up.” More importantly: at one point during his guest verse here, Ross says, “Counting money, money machines, they going …” and then does his best impersonation of a money-counting machine. In his estimation, it’s sort of a “kchhh.”

Lana del Ray, “Born to Die”

Lana del Ray, the most controversial MP3-blog artist of our generation, drops a new one.

Broken Social Scene, “Funky Boss”

The Canadian indie-rock collective is now going on a hiatus, so this show in Rio could very well be their last show everrrr. Wisely, they chose to wrap it up with a semi-obscure Beastie Boys banger. They also do “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For,” but feel free to skip right over that.

Stalley, “330”

Stalley, the bearded Ohioan signed to Rick Ross’s Maybach Music Group, is re-releasing his mixtape Lincoln Way Nights this week as a retail album, and has whipped up a tour video for standout cut “330” to go along with it. A side note: while we’re glad the very deserving Stalley — who kind of sounds like a harder Lupe Fiasco — is enjoying the status upgrade that comes with a Ross co-sign, we are a little concerned that these two stylistically different MCs might not have anything to talk about when they’re alone together.

The Rapture, “In Love Divine”

The Rapture – “In Love Divine” by Some Kind of Awesome
The Rapture is all like, “Yeah, you hadn’t heard anything from us in like five years, but now that we’re back, even our B-sides are going to be so epic they make you curl up in the fetal position and think about life.”

Washed Out, “Amor Fati” (Clams Casino Remix)

Clams Casino, the man making the most excellent dreamy, near-hip-hop beats on the market today, tackles Washed Out. The results, as you might expect, are more soothing than a Sharper Image nature sounds best-of comp.

Cee Lo Green, “Anyway”

This track, off the deluxe re-release of The Lady Killer, is kind of a reverse “Fuck You.” Here, the Soul Machine explains how he’s stingy with his money and how he shows up late for dates and how he does other jerky things, but his girl loves him anyway. Aww. More importantly: Weezer’s Rivers Cuomo wrote this song!

Filed Under: Beastie Boys, Cee Lo Green, Music, Rick Ross, Rihanna, Songs of the Week

Amos Barshad has written for New York Magazine, Spin, GQ, XXL, and the Arkansas Times. He is a staff writer for Grantland.

Archive @ AmosBarshad