You’re Welcome by Jordan Fisher and Manuel Miranda
Manuel Miranda is one talented individual. He’s got a slew of awards already, including an Emmy, Grammy, and Tony award (multiple of each), and now he is trying for the Oscar with his soundtrack work for Disney’s new movie Moana. If he were to win an Oscar, he would join a group of just twelve other people who have achieved the legendary EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony). On this song with Jordan Fisher, he provides a rap verse that took me by surprise. I know that he wrote the Broadway hit, Hamilton, but I hadn’t actually heard him sing until I listened to this song. Yeah it isn’t a stereotypical rap environment, but he makes it work. Jordan Fisher also kills his verse and the chorus. He has such a great vocal range, hitting impossibly high notes with ease while still being able to reach those low baritone notes when needed. Apparently in the movie, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s character sings this song, and after listening to that, I’m glad Miranda and Fisher put together this remake. The Rock should just stick to acting in the future if you ask me.
Leave by Post Malone
With Post Malone’s new album, Stoney, being released in just a few days, it feels like all I write about are his new releases. I hate to be repetitive, but he just keeps putting out hits. ‘Leave’ is a big change of pace compared to his other new records, but I think it might be my favorite. It takes on a slower pace that for some reason reminds me of an old western movie. A big, airy kick drum interlaid with tambourine strikes help to set this vibe, as well as strummed guitar chords and a picked guitar melody over the top. In most music, it is the percussion that really drives the song and keeps everything moving, but that is not the case here. The bassline takes over this role, maintaining a steady rhythm throughout most of the song. Usually I talk about the vocalist, but it goes without saying that Post Malone kills it. I’m sure you’ve picked that up by now from the countless other times I’ve written about his music. Give this song a listen and check out his new album, ‘Stoney’, out December 9.
Hung Up (feat. Emma Gatsby) by Tritonal
I just can’t get enough of this song. Tritonal has put out some fantastic songs in the past, and they continue the trend with ‘Hung Up’. This song just has a way of putting you in a good mood, which is weird because the lyrics describe being “hung up” on an ex. It has a very soothing and relaxing feel to it, which just goes to show how much effect the production and instrumental parts have on a song. With that being said, it is not a slow or depressing song. It maintains an energetic beat throughout that keeps listeners moving, even if it is just a subtle head nod or foot tap. By far my favorite thing about this song is how they incorporate a very melodic bassline into the chorus. It gives the song a bounce that many producers have trouble achieving. Finding a great balance between upbeat and calming, this song is great to listen to while doing work or just hanging out throughout the day. Give it a listen and check out some of Tritonal’s older records.
Foreplay by Jalen Santoy
If you like good rap and sweet, sweet sax, then this song is definitely for you. I first heard about this song on a podcast. One of the hosts recommended it, and I figured I would give it a shot. I’m glad I did because this song bangs. It’s not a new song by any means, but it’s one of those hidden gems that may be overlooked at first glance. I don’t know who produced this song, but whoever did absolutely crushed it. And if Jalen Santoy produced it himself, even bigger props to him because both the instrumental and vocal parts of this song are incredible. Santoy sounds a lot like J Cole, especially in this song, so if you like J Cole, you’ll probably like this too. He has openly disagreed with the fact that he sounds like J Cole, but it’s pretty hard to draw comparisons between the two rappers. Regardless, Santoy has a hit on his hands with ‘Foreplay’, and I highly recommend you give it a listen. Try to listen to the single version if you can because the version on his album has some dumb dialogue towards the end.
Not Going Home (feat. Gia Koka) by DVBBS
DVBBS is back with yet another hit song. They reached stardom with their massive song ‘Tsunami’, and have used that break out to really put out quality music. They became the target of some criticism throughout the EDM world because of ‘Tsunami’s’ commercial popularity, but I find it hard to criticize a group that has experienced so much success. Regardless of their past music, ‘Not Going Home’ is an amazing song. They use vocal sampling throughout the drop to create a fantastic, unique melody, and they layer some great synth chords under it to create one of the catchiest drops I’ve heard in a while. You can’t not move to this song. On top of that, Gia Koka provides fantastic vocals that describe how it feels to yearn for someone’s attention without exactly getting it. Definitely check this out, you won’t be disappointed.