FAULT Music

It’s Swedish newcomer Gabriel Gassi’s world and we’re just living in it

Swedish beatmaker Gabriel Gassi has been brewing his own brand of hip-hop, pop and dance hall originals and impressing with every installment.

Gassi introduced himself with the 2016 single “Street Phone”, unveiling his own signature myriad of genres. Enjoying two weeks running in Spotify’s Global Viral 50 and streaming in the millions, four ensuing single releases then solidified his identity and paved the way for potentially his most explosive track to date, “Lost”.

We’re happy to give you the first listen to the track today and think it’s appropriate to implore you to get “Lost” in the song.

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FAULT Magazine Interview with The Kooks’ Luke Pritchard

 

WORDS: ROBERT K. BAGGS

PHOTO: ROBERT K. BAGGS

With cigarette smoke on my All Saints cardigan, and snakebite on my converse, I would shuffle in to the local meeting point for fresh-faced dreamers, when drinking was new and hangovers didn’t last. A local band would awkwardly slither on stage and bellow some angsty homage to Queens of the Stone Age, before a playlist filled the gaps between acts. The quiet guitar rift of Naïve would start and the volume of the swaying masses increases before converging in to a flat chorus of karaoke. The Kooks have been anthemic to so many people for so many years, and in a symbiotic relationship, the band has stood the test of time and so has their music.

To this day, a long shopping list of their tracks will get a rise out of audiences of all ages, and they stand as only a handful of the early indie era who have evolved and maintained relevance as the geography of modern music has shifted dramatically, as it’s one to do. Sticking to their core musical beliefs and tastes, they haven’t leaned in to the whims of radio air time — a commercial and business risk that’s both noble and saddening — but have instead developed their sound and massaged it in different directions. Their new album Let’s Go Sunshine takes another step in to a refined and thoughtful motif that still bears the thread of the playful, nostalgic sound that made them famous.

 

FAULT: The Kooks have stayed together for so long now, and that’s rare to see. Bands, like companies, don’t usually last that long whether they succeed or not. You’ve had some changed in personnel, but generally it’s stayed constant. Do you have any advice for other bands starting out with regards to longevity?

Luke: It’s a mixture of the team. We’ve all just soldiered on when things were tough, and when things were good, we didn’t lose out heads… completely. We also have a very caring and small management team, so we get a lot of personal care which is a big part of it. They become family and friends as much as a business partnership. I’ve got to believe we’ve always put out decent music and that’s kept people excited and kept the song writing a bit more inspired. Or it’s just luck!

It’s interesting, I’ve spoken to artists before privately about support network and how when you “make it” so to speak, they become crucial in keeping you grounded and healthy, or working to your detriment. Particularly when you go through a dark period and you need a break, I know some artists have had their support network tell them they can’t have a break, they have obligations.

Luke: Yeah and there’s mouths to feed at that level. People depend on you to make money. You have to be strong with that stuff. We’re a different kettle of fish in many ways as we’re a band and we’re not megastars, so we’re not hugely pressured. But with this new album (Let’s Go Sunshine), there are pressures. There are guys in there who have kids and need to pay their mortgage, there’s all that going on. When we took some time, I raised it, and it was difficult. But it did work. It does work. Happiness is so important, mental health is so important, general wellbeing — even if you’re getting smashed all the time and enjoying it, it can get dark. Most song writers are highly emotive; your emotions are just under the surface. So you can lose the plot a bit, and it’s sad to see. But with us, we have a couple of conversations and can take a step back if we feel we’re doing the wrong thing. This is all very relevant to Let’s Go Sunshine. I think this is a really fucking special record because it’s a band coming back in to focus and being a band again, but it took us four years.

Why did it take that long? Was it perfectionism, trial and error, or something else?

Luke: It wasn’t really trial and error, we did some stuff that we shelved. So we decided to stop, regroup, and I went away and wrote some songs and we put out a best of album. It lucked out really, because from that we did some live shows and it all started to come together.

I find it interesting to see how bands progress with their sound over the years. I spent some time yesterday comparing Let’s Go Sunshine with Inside In/Inside Out which obviously shot you to prominence.

Luke: Well, this is the funny thing really. When we first met you said that Inside In/Inside Out had soundtracked a time in your life, which is really cool. But it’s a double-edged sword and I was talking about this the other day. There are a few bands I would say who are in a similar position. We are trying to breakout of that sound back then which was synonymous with that time for so many people. For example, we played a festival the other day and this girl said “listening to you reminds me of when I was 15”. It’s cool, but it’s tough! There are obviously bands that don’t have that and have this freshness. Where as we feel like we’re anchored to our first album. With this new album it’s very important for us to try and break out of that, even though we’re keeping our sound.

I hadn’t thought of it like that, but it’s true. When I say you soundtracked a time in my life, it could be seen as a sort of backhanded compliment, where I’m also suggesting you’re not relevant anymore, which I of course didn’t intend.

Luke: Oh no, I don’t see it as a backhanded compliment. But it’s funny with public perceptions as to me, day to day, what we’re doing is fresh. But it’s got to be a testament to Inside In/Inside Out being such a strong record. I don’t find it frustrating, but it’s very interesting. It’s as if we have this sound that locks us to that time and we will break out of it. Which is what our new record is about.

It is interesting. I mean, with Arctic Monkeys for example. With their albums, they seemed to always make a conscious change. Whereas, with The Kooks, it feels more like evolution than revolution. There’s a strand going through your albums that I recognise as ‘The Kooks’ but Let’s Go Sunshine is a new sound. But if you compare early Arctic Monkeys with Tranquillity Base Hotel & Casino, it’s just worlds apart. So, for you, I guess you want to break away from your sound, but at the same time, breaking away is bitter sweet.

Luke: It is bitter sweet. On the new album I was conscious to show the DNA of the band. Even when I was writing Four-Leaf Clover, I was jamming on the Ooh La chords, but Hugh brought in a more Smiths vibe to the guitarwork. We want to keep the sound but progress. You can only emulate the bands that you love, and no matter how far you go, there’s always a nod back.

Have you tried revolution as opposed to evolution?

Luke: Well, our fourth album technically was that. I mean, it was a commercial flop, but I’m really proud of that album. We ripped up the album and started again. So, we did it once, and it was exciting. But this new album is about defining us and being ourselves. We’re not trying to follow the trends; I’m not really in to trends, rightly or wrongly. I had a lot of people saying to me that we should get off the guitars and team up with producers and DJs, but it’s just not us. We’re guitars and we’re good live.

I would have hated if you had done that. I can see the commercial value, but I’d have hated it!

Luke: Radio is a tough one, particularly when you’re competing with high-end produced stuff. We never entertained that change, but there were some really great people telling us to do it. They weren’t being arseholes. But I believe in what we did. I love that we found this guy Brandon Friesen who has worked with Nickelback and Sum41, who are not in my world at all. He hadn’t done any band records for years and was working with Billy Ray Cyrus and doing country and I just met him at a barbeque. And we just decided that we should work together and make a proper record like how they used to be made.

Right, time for some straightforward questions. Favourite song off the new album?

Luke: Weight of the World.

All time favourite song to play live?

Luke: Bad Habit. Great guitar opener.

Right, this can be off the record if you want, but do you hate playing Naïve?

Luke: Ha! It can be on the record. I hate playing some of the old songs on radio sessions, but live it’s always great. Even if you don’t feel like playing it, when the crowd get involved it’s amazing. Weirdly no then, I actually love playing it. For a while I said we should do a different version, but I don’t know if we can. It’s such an epic moment when we play that stuff live. It’s a euphoric tune and chorus. Naïve is so unique in our music as we don’t have any other song like it really. But it’s funny, I wrote those when I was so young.

That’s a good point. Do you have any musical regrets? You’ve obviously grown up while putting out music.

Luke: Yeah, I have written some bad songs… some bad songs. But there’s only a few artists in the world that have never written a bad song, I mean maybe not even that. Even David Bowie wrote occasional stinkers. But one of my biggest regrets is on our second album with the mixing. One day I want to go back and mix it again and I want to do it myself. We were going to the States and we were trying to do stuff over there and you get blinded by that, and we mixed it with a big American sound. It was sad really as there was inevitably a backlash coming for us after that first album.

Yeah, you must have been under pressure for that second album to succeed.

Luke: We were, and we did it quickly too. We didn’t take our time. But, some of those songs have lasted well. But the mixing on that second album is definitely my biggest regret.

Ok, what is your most memorable performance? I mean, you recently opened for the Rolling Stones, so that must be up there!

Luke: The Stones was cool actually as I have a family connection. My Dad played with the Stones in his bands in the 60s so that was a nice connection. There are a few performances that stand out though. When we played Ibiza for the first time we were just blowing up but no one really knew us. We played in Ibiza supporting Faithless, who are amazing live,  just as Naïve was hitting and it felt like the band might actually make it you know? Glastonbury too of course.

Finally, what is your FAULT?

Luke: I think my biggest fault is over thinking, its a bit of a double-edged sword because with songwriting it can work out well to never give up and keep chipping away at a song, but you gotta know when to stop otherwise the outcome will suffer. Quite often I’ll rewrite and rewrite and then go full circle back to my original idea. And I get into some pretty bad sleep patterns when I’m working and can mess me up!

 

Greg Laswell chats all things music with FAULT Magazine

 

Greg Laswell X FAULT Magazine

Words by Alex Cooke

Photographs by Andre Niesing

Greg Laswell, who couples his buttery smooth voice and beautiful sense of songwriting with introspective and poetic lyrics, is back with his newest album, “Next Time.” It has his biggest sound yet, and it’s a wonderful sonic journey led by his storytelling and musicianship. FAULT spoke to Laswell recently to find out just what motivates this talented musician and how he crafts his memorable songs.

Can you tell me a bit about how “Next Time” came together and how your sound has evolved?

I had a break, but just kind of kept going, and then, when I came back to start another record, I wanted to make it pretty big sonically and I wanted to sing out more. I went to California for about six weeks and then came back and listened to what I had. And my perspective had changed so much that I had to throw most of it out. Starting over gave me the fortitude to actually do what I really wanted to get done with it. So, shortly thereafter, I wrote a song called “Royal Empress.” That was the first one I finished after I threw a bunch of them out, and that kind of framed the rest of the record. I was like: “this is what I want sonically. I want something as large as this, and so I just kept doing that.”

How do you approach writing lyrics these days?

I was in a hurry, because I burned a couple of months with starting over, and so, I ended up writing and recording at the same time, and it was kind of awesome actually, because usually, I’m constantly writing; the memo app on my phone is just full of ideas, and sometimes, it’s just a line or a thought that I’ll have. This record, I threw away a bunch, and so when I went back, I was recording at the same exact time as I was writing, and it was kind of a new way for me to do things.

How do you approach the process of writing and recording when you’re the one manning all the instruments? I mean obviously, you can’t lay down all the tracks at one time like you would with a band.

I’ll just keep adding kind of thoughtlessly, and then, when it comes time to produce, I’ll kind of chip away at it and take things away in the end. Kind of like how a sculptor takes away — like a painter adds and a sculptor takes away until it’s done, so I kind of throw everything at it, and then I just start taking stuff away, little by little.

I noticed a ton of nuance in the drums on this record. Was that a conscious thought or is that just how they’ve evolved naturally for you?

I mean there’re a lot of sounds on this record that aren’t even drum sounds. For one, I just stood in my bathtub. I pulled my mic, I got a long cable, pulled it through the hallway, put it in the bathroom, and then stomped on the bathtub floor with my heels, and then, that was the kick drum. I had my headphone extension on, and so I was literally in my bathroom a lot! I bet my neighbors thought I was crazy.

That’s kind of a fun process for me to go through and figure out new ways to approach it. I always loved the drum tracks because I feel like the drums kind of help form the song.

“Super Moon,” I have to say, is probably my favorite on the record. Could you tell me more about it?

I always wanted to write a song about the phenomenon of when you take a picture of the moon and when you’re there, you’re looking at it, it’s beautiful and it’s large. So naturally, you take your phone out and you take a picture of it, and the picture always looks like shit, it doesn’t look anything remotely — it couldn’t be more unimpressive, you know what I mean?

And so, I wanted to draw the parallels between that and heartbreak; like it says, there’re parts of heartbreak and significant loss that you just can’t describe to someone who hasn’t gone through it or wasn’t there. You try to take a picture of it, so to speak, and show it to someone, but it’s gonna end up looking like a picture of a super moon. They’re not gonna get it, and I feel like often times, in real significant loss, people won’t truly understand what you’re going through until they’ve gone through it themselves. That’s basically the gist of the entire song.

What’s your favorite song on the record?

I think probably either that one or “Royal Empress” — one of those two.

When you are listening to music, who are you listening to these days?

I’m listening to a lot of stuff without lyrics or words. I love Chopin; I’m listening to a lot of him. My two stations on SiriusXM are classical music and jazz music. And then it’s always just the stuff that I grew up on: Peter Gabriel and early Tori Amos, Tom Petty and always The Beatles; The Beatles are always kind of interwoven into my listening palette.

I went to the music instrument museum in Arizona and they have an exhibit about Chopin, and I got some Chopin socks. They were those art socks, so whenever I wear shorts when I golf, I pull out my Chopin socks.

So besides music, what’s inspiring you these days?

Believe it or not, I’ve always been inspired more by movies. I’m more likely to write a song after I’ve seen a really good film than I am after hearing a really good song. So, I’ve always been inspired by movies, and golf, it’s a new thing for me. I’ve been at it for three years. I found it to be like in the way that a lot of people describe meditation or yoga or whatever. I found that there’s a lot in common for how I golf.

What’s your favorite part of touring?

This last tour, I told the audience that I would wait after the show to take pictures or to sign things or whatever. And I found that it kind of turned into my favorite part of the night, especially at this point in my career, because I got to talk to and meet a lot of people who have been through a lot with me. It’s like they’ve been through a lot in their lives and they’ve got to tell me about it and how my songs played an integral part in certain chapters of their life. And many times, the way they interpreted the songs weren’t anywhere near why I wrote them in the first place, but I love that too. I love it when people take one of my songs and just completely make it their own; that’s my ultimate goal.

Do you have any advice for musicians?

You gotta be able to really want it. It’s kind of a bumper sticker thought that I keep, it’s like my mantra over the years: if you have a plan B, then go ahead and do yourself a favor and get to it. Because if you have a plan B, then part of you is planning to fail; I’ve always believed that. You have to have good friends around you that are honest with you about whether you’re good enough or not. And then you just have to really want to do it.

If you could work with anyone, past or present, who would you want to work with?

I would love to do something with Lana Del Rey, a duet. I love her voice so much. It’s one of my favorites. She’s like the new Nancy Sinatra or something. I could listen to her sing the phone book.

What is your fault?

Gosh, what is my fault? That’s a good question, I mean I have several. I think my fault is that I have to overcome my pessimism, regularly; it’s something that I have to stay on top of, like my natural… what is it, my resting face? When I’m idle, I’m pessimistic. So, I have to constantly be aware of that and find ways to overcome it.

Anything you’d like to add?

There is a happy song on this record! Greg Laswell fans will be surprised at that, I think. (laughs)

Well, I personally loved it.

I think you’ll love “Next Time” as well. It’s available on iTunes, Amazon, Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, SoundCloud, and YouTube. He’ll be on tour in January 2019; check out the dates here.

 

FAULT Weekly Playlist: Lostboycrow

Lostboycrow draws from Santa Fe, New Mexico’s natural creative energy and endless high desert landscape for his new single “Since The Day I Was Born.” It’s the first look from his forthcoming album aptly titled Santa Fe and where he wrote most of the album. “I was already in love with the people and energy of New Mexico, and Santa Fe is so beautiful,” he admits. “Santa Fe is a vehicle of exploring gratitude for where I am, who I am, and how I came to be Lostboycrow and ultimately do what I’m doing.”

Revered for his rapturous voice, off-kilter R&B panache, pure alternative perception, and airtight songwriting, Lostboycrow has emerged in 2018 with over 150 million streams with no sign of stopping.

In addition to sharing his new song “Since The Day I Was Born,” we asked Lostboycrow to put together a playlist of songs that inspire him. Check it out below.

1. Grouplove – Borderlines and Aliens
This band is equal parts compelling, original and just completely fun. you can just tell they had the best time making it. makes me want to get on a stage overtime.

2. Cage The Elephant – Portuguese Knife Fight
They always seem to have a classic timeless feel while just fucking shit up. I love that.

3. STRFKR – Kahlil Gibran
Portland boy is a sucker for these sounds. i dare you to find me a strfkr track that doesn’t have a perfect groove. relaxed. sure of itself.

4. Tame Impala – List of People (To Try and Forget About)
This song is just flat out believable. the music, lyrics and melody each coexist in such a perfect place.

5. Charlie Burg – Episode III
Feels like you’re at a house show without actually sounding like a typical one. recording live (assuming here) is always enjoyable to me as a listener.

6. Pale Waves – Karl (I Wonder What Its Like To Die)
This band is so special and i think this is the most unique and compelling piece yet. no words do this one justice. just honest writing.

7. Bear Hands – Agora
This song just radiates a kind of invincibility. unconventional and yet so easy to listen to.

8. Josh Ritter – Miles Away
A true storyteller in true storyteller fashion.

9. Spoon – Do I Have to Talk You Into It
Such an effortless song to get into. classic Spoon with a groove you can just sink back into without having to think about it, yet totally original.

10. Alvvays – Dreams Tonite
A perfect song.

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EFG London Jazz Festival 2018 launch party

EFG London Jazz Festival 2018

EFG London Jazz Festival 2018

Words: Flora Neighbour

Monday saw the crème de la crème of the jazz world get together for the EFG London Jazz Festival 2018 launch party. A boozy affair in the low-lit, ground-floor Crystal Room at The May Fair Hotel, the evening was packed full of entertainment and speeches from big names in jazz and blues, hosted by BBC 3’s Jumoké Fashola. People gathered together, chatted, networked and caught up with old friends who hadn’t been seen since last year’s revelry. The evening was a constant buzz of excitement and the fancy dress photo booth definitely added to it with pictures being taken towards the end of the night.

Kicking things off, Chairman of the festival’s sponsor EFG, John Williamson, spoke of the tireless efforts and amazing performances the festival produces, while also announcing the continuation of their sponsorship of the London Jazz Festival for another five years, adding: “2018 marks the 10th anniversary of our partnership with the London Jazz Festival, during which time we have seen the festival go from strength to strength. As an organisation, we aspire to share and celebrate the distinctive qualities which make jazz such an exceptional art form, embracing creativity and innovation, freedom of individual and collective expression, diversity and collaboration. Through our sponsorship programmes we also strive to help up and coming talent establish their voice on a global stage.”

 

EFG London Jazz Festival 2018

Alex Davis, Cherise Adams-Burnett, Rob Luft, Claire Whitaker, John Williamson, Claire Mera-Nelson, Jumoke Fashola, Corrie Dick, Camilla George and James Stirling. Image credit: Tatiana Gorilovsky

 

Giving the party a boost of much-needed youthfulness, Cherise Burnett-Adams took to the stage with Rob Luft supporting her on guitar to perform for the crowds in-between speeches. This year will be Cherise’s first festival, so I took this opportunity to talk to the singer. Speaking about her excitement at performing this November, she added: “I always knew that singing was a passion of mine and wanted to learn more about it, but all of the other genres, like pop, were tailored towards the commercial side of the industry, so I decided to go down the jazz route. Jazz isn’t about the hype or fame, it’s about creating good music with good people.

“The London Jazz Festival has also created an opportunity for me, with the celebration of the Windrush generation, to connect to my grandparents. All four of my grandparents came over in the sixties from Jamaica, but they didn’t talk about their experiences. So, I sat down with my grandma and spoke to her and decided to put on a separate show about her story, which is called Evelyn and the Yellow Birds. The performance tells her personal story about bravery, preparation and how she uprooted her entire life. It also explains how she found a sense of community through music during lonelier times.

“I’m so grateful to be a part of the EFG London Jazz Festival 2018 and can’t wait to perform my music at The Royal Albert Hall on the 21st November.”

 

Cherise Adams-Burnett at EFG London Jazz Festival 2018

Cherise Adams-Burnett

 

Not only can you see Cherise’s homage to the Windrush generation, other concerts created for the festival include Windrush: A Celebration, presented by Anthony Joseph, which features Mighty Sparrow, Calypso Rose and Brother Resistance, and Orphy Robinson’s Astral Weeks, with Zara McFarlane and Sarah Jane Morris.

Still London’s largest city-wide festival, with more than 2,000 artists with 325 performances in 70 venues across the capital, the music week promotes inclusivity and diversity, with artists from around the world flying in from the 16th November. Make sure you check out the online programme which includes dates for Archie Shepp, Abdullah Ibrahim and Ekaya, as well as Hollywood hero Jeff Goldblum and his band, The Mildred Snitzer Orchestra.

So, give a jazz hand to the EFG London Jazz Festival 2018 and get yourself to a concert in November.

 

For more information, visit www.efglondonjazzfestival.org.uk

 

Gabriel Kane Day Lewis Photoshoot and Interview with FAULT Magazine Preview

 

 

 

 

Art Direction & Photography: Leonardo De Angelis & Eric Francis Silverberg 

Stylist: Marc Anthony George 

Groomer: Roberto Morelli

Stylist Assistant: Evan Grotevant

Location SplashLight Studios NYC

 

 

Words: Carolyn Okomo

 

While music appears to be the emerging pop crooner’s chosen love, the Day Lewis hasn’t cast off the idea of trading a microphone for a script, though he admits he still has much to learn about the artform.

 

“I have, and I do want to act. It just has to be right. The right director, the right cast, the right screenplay.  I want to be in something noteworthy” he says. “But before I just throw myself into acting I want to take classes and learn. I feel it’s important for all artists to go through a certain learning process, regardless of talent.”

 

Day Lewis recently spoke with FAULT about his influences, regret, bullies, and forging his own unique brand of celebrity.

 

How did you discover your passion for music?

 

I wouldn’t say that I discovered music. It was a gradual thing, and it’s definitely been ingrained in me for as far back as I can remember. I’ve just always loved everything about music, and as I got older I started showing a pretty natural interest in the hands on aspect of music, and picked up the piano and guitar.

 

The first song I wrote was for my babysitter Kelly. I was five,  I think. The song was called “Pretty”, and it was basically me singing the word “pretty” over and over again to the tune of “Twinkle twinkle little star”. Wrote my first “original” song when I was eleven or twelve. I’ve been writing songs since.

 

 

Who are some artist you’d like to work with?

 

It’s hard to pinpoint, the youth is crushing pop at the moment. So many new faces, and insane amounts of talent. Everyone’s doing their thing and it’s really cool. I’d like to work with James Bay, his vibe is really what I’m about at the moment. Ed Sheeran would obviously be a dream collaboration. He just writes the most incredible songs.

 

You’ve written off your hip hop-influenced video, ‘Green Aura,’ as a misrepresentation of you as an artist. Do you feel the same way about it? How do you think you’ve grown, and what do you feel you’ve learned, since making that video — good and bad?

 

Green Auras. I used to always avoid questions about the viral music video I made when I was eighteen because it was still somewhat of a fresh wound, if you will. But now that I’ve been able to distance myself and completely come to terms with all the shade the internet threw at me back then, and look on it with some perspective from life experiences I’ve had since then.

 

I don’t really have anything I regret. If anything it was a valuable lesson and I learned it early on. The internet us a playground for bullies. In the track for that video, I made my biggest mistake by opening up about some real personal issues I hadn’t addressed back then, and people were just flat out mean about it. I was young and didn’t think the video would ever get the attention it did. I don’t care anymore, it blew over and it’s in the past now.

 

 

How did growing up in NYC influence you as an artist?

 

NYC has been just as good for my creativity, as its been stifling. What I love about the city is it’s constant flow of energy, the diversity. There’s always something to do and people to meet.  It feels so familiar to me. There’s something about the city that makes me feel on top of the world. That feeling of being unstoppable with infinite possibilities. It becomes energy that can be processed creatively. But I had to take a break from New York, it was wearing me out. I’ll be back soon.

 

What is your FAULT?

 

Hopeless romance.

 

FAULT Weekly Playlist: Sakehands

Seen through rose-tinted lenses, pop music can take on a polymorphous sound with lush vocals and plasticine production and the conductor in this case is sakehands. Led by producer and songwriter Aris Maggiani, sakehands is an LA-based collective who first garnered recognition for a 2015 Soundcloud demo “TOY,” which led to their signing to Majestic Casual Records.

Maggiani’s new single “PLASTIC” features sakehands’ latest recruit singer/vocalist Lauren Boncato aka Lo. The track pulls from a bevy of sources: 8-bit chiptune, ‘90s boy bands like N*SYNC, and the likes of the late R&B siren Aaliyah and producer Timbaland.

We asked Maggiani’s to put together a playlist of tracks that inspire sakehands’ music and it’s no surprise that ’90s / ’00s stalwarts like N*SYNC and Destiny’s Child make the cut. Check it out below.

1. Destiny’s Child – So Good
One of my favorite Destiny songs. I’ve been hooked on Kevin Briggs production since 4th grade, along with Rodney Jerkins. I still can’t get my snares this perfect.

2. 702 – You Don’t Know
This is one of the first songs that started using beats like that. It’s cool too because I think this came out in 1999 and a year later a lot of rnb moved in this direction. I love that sense of urgency in the drums.

3. N*SYNC – Do Your Thing
This song goes so hard and it’s basically just vocals, percussion and probably the best re-intro harmony I’ve ever heard. Plus that rap verse is wild…

4. O-Town – Sexiest Woman Alive
The lyrics are ridiculous. During this time boy bands would always sing about how girls “blow their mind”. I swear it was in like every song. I actually watched the first Making the Band with my mom and sister every week so we always kind of felt like we “knew” O-town. My mom liked Ashley.

5. Destiny’s Child – If
Despite the sample being completely overused, this generation of Destiny’s Child interpolated the original track better than anyone probably ever will.

It’s easy to think of it as just a pretty song when in reality it’s a diss track with so much attitude and sass. I love writing songs this way.

6. Spice Girls – Holler
For me Rodney Jenkins’ style is timeless. This track is 18 years old and I literally just try to copy it every time I work.

7. O-Town – Right Kind of Wrong
Not much to say about this other than it is a BOP

8. N*SYNC – The Two Of Us
This is my ultimate middle school crush track. It’s my leave on repeat during a long car ride while wearing headphones and staring out the window thinking about a girl track.

I doubt that I will ever know if I achieve this but one of my goals with sakehands is to give the same feeling to people that was given to me at a young age.

9. Natalie – Goin’ Crazy
Another good crush song, except for when they don’t feel the same about you. It’s nice to feel sad and listen to this song to feel more sad. It’s really a vibe, especially if its raining.

10. Isyss – Day & Night
One of my favorite chord progressions. This is one of the only tracks that isn’t from the 2000’s but it’s too good not to include. Personally I’m not into much 90s rnb/pop. People sometimes try to associate sakehands with 90s music but it’s whatever they probably like Next – Too Close

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Get acquainted with the eclectic sounds of Demons Of Ruby Mae

Opening with dark, possessed synths, “Young Blood” is the latest ’80s influenced single from Manchester based duo Demons of Ruby Mae. Comprised of Jonny Gavin and Adam Rowley, the pair teamed up with James Sanger (Faithless, Brian Eno) to expand the boundaries of their compositions, evident in “Young Blood.”

In an email, Demons of Ruby Mae say the song “is about taking a chance on love when you’re young and have nothing to lose.” “Young Blood” comes from the duo’s forthcoming debut album due out October 26th.

Tracklist
1. Intro
2. To Be Adored
3. Synesthesia
4. Records
5. Young Blood
6. What Is Now
7. Beneath The Surface
8. Someday
9. This Is The End

Tour Dates:
October 3rd – Brighton @ Hope & Ruin
October 4th – London @ The Black Heart
October 5th – Sheffield @ Cafe Totem
October 6th – Manchester @ The Night and Day Cafe
October 11th – Glasgow @ Broadcast
November 1st – Nottingham @ The Chameleon Arts Centre
November 3rd – Newcastle @ Head Of Steam

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