PLAYLIST: The best new music of the week

Hello and welcome to a extra large edition of your weekly Howl & Echoes playlist. The 130track whopper starts off with some soulful crooning, before we hit an electronic hill, and roll back down with some serious hip hop. Enjoy!

The Kite String Tangle & Dustin Tebbutt, Illuminate
Well this is just a match made in heaven. Blending TKST’s talent for gorgeous electronic melodies with Tebbutt’s vocals (as well as his own,) this is a beautiful song and the perfect start to your weekly playlist. A gentle atmosphere starts to build throughout, at a perfect pace and with such a rich soundscape. We hear a lot of melodic electronica every week, but this collab absolutely stands out. In fact I like this better than any song the two have released individually. The pair are touring together soon – hopefully an EP is in the works!

Wet, Deadwater
We had fun taking photos of Wet while they were on tour opening for London Grammar. I absolutely loved their debut EP, so it’s great to hear new music today. Taking cues from the likes of Purity Ring and Chvrches, Deadwater toys with a brighter electro-pop sound and airy, breathy vocals. However, the laid back groove and organic soundscape keep them a little more refrained, kind of like Rhye. Beautiful and somehow sad all at once, I absolutely love this track.

Darius, Helios ft. Wayne Snow (Myd Remix)
Yes, this is the third time this track has featured in a weekly playlists. I still can’t get enough of the original track, and now Myd has put his own spin on it. The Bromance Records producer has sped it up and tacked on a swift beat, a shuffled rhythm and a bright house beat. Admittedly I don’t like it as much as Bondax’s version, but I have a feeling this’ll be a big favourite for the house-inclined folk out there.

Aeroplane, Let’s Get Slow ft. Benjamin Diamond
Another house track to lighten up this playlist, Aeroplane’s latest takes you back to those balmy summer nights, now a distant memory. I really love Benjamin Diamond’s vocals. There’s something nostalgic about that melody, and his voice has a really lovely richness to it. The bubbly synths brighten up the simple rhythm, and the whole thing blooms into something heavier and really catchy as it progresses along.

Leon Osborn, You Were Gone ft. Barksdale
Newly signed to Pilerats Records, Leon Osborne releases this eerie, experimental electronic track. It’s one of those track where there’s a lot to explore – the more you listen, the deeper you delve. There’s a great variety of tones and colours throughout the layers, and they’ve come together to create something really unique and definitely interesting. Definitely a track to listen to with headphones on, at full volume to take it all in.

Slumberjack, The Others ft. KLP (UZ Remix)
I’ll admit that I’m pretty sick of super low pitch-shifted vocals, but I really do enjoy this deep, dark remix of Slumberjack’s track with KLP. The slow beat really envelops you, and as the soundscape starts to build, it only grows more haunting and more captivating. Strange, strange things starts to happen after the 90-second mark, and the drop is all kinds of fun. Falling just shy of a guilty-pleasure-banger, there’s a lot more than what meets the eye to this cool, if convoluted remix.

Big Wild, Aftergold
This is the latest single on Odesza’s brand new label – and it’s definitely clear that Odesza had a say in this, particularly through the more ambient moments. Bright and catchy with a big, bouncy rhythm, this is a super fun tune. Despite the bright synths and over-used clap rhythms, it doesn’t stray into that over-bright Wave Racer territory, largely thanks to the massive brassy synths and occasionally glitchy rhythmic embellishments.

Tashka, Taken
Blending on-trend electro-pop-soul with a headier R&B melody, upcoming Sydney artist Tashka has named her new single after the Liam Neeson film of the same name. It’s a very safe track, sure, but there’s a lot to love, particularly the sensual beat, the beautiful melody and the wonderful harmonies which accompany it, as well as those breathy marimba-style echoes. Mixed and mastered by Andrei Eremin, keep an eye out for Tashka’s debut EP later this year.

Maiday, You
A piano-led pop track with a twist, there’s so much sublime vulnerability in Maiday’s vocals. As the track starts to grow and move, a great rhythm kicks in, and her voice rises with soft, yet demanding confidence. It’s one of those tracks where the devil is in the details – those little piano harmonies, the occasional synth flickers and momentary bass booms make all the difference. A really impressive track from the upcoming UK singer, keep an eye out for Maiday’s debut EP, also set for release later this year.

Eska, Boundaries
I absolutely fell in love with the power and originality of Eska’s music a few months back, so I’m really excited that she’s back in our playlist today. Boundaries is raw and simply stunning. Her vocals take centre stage – as they should – accompanied by dramatic, theatrical instrumental layers. The slightly off-beat, ever-changing timing only makes this track even more intriguing. As the melody swells up, I can’t help but feel like this would be at home in a contemporary musical. We don’t hear music like this every day – so thank you, Eska.

Jordan Bratton, Prisoner ft. Chance The Rapper
WHAT A TRACK! My pick for the week. There’s so much honesty and emotion in Bratton’s melody, and it’s so raw, with a simple backing beat and harmonies gently building behind it. “Is this just a prisoner without a cage?” he sings, delivering a powerful message about a girl who has been so hypnotised by fame and money that she’s lost her way in the world. Guest vox from Chance The Rapper (who takes the form of Chance The Singer here) add another beautiful layer to it all, and the star power will no doubt bring Bratton the attention he deserves.

Master Wolf, Never Question The Dopeness
I’m excited to introduce you to Master Wolf, an upcoming rapper from Brisbane. It’s so, so, so refreshing to hear good rap coming from Australia, and Master Wolf nails it on his debut track. Taking the lead above a chilled, gangsta-inspired beat, Master Wolf shows us what he’s got – and what’s got is a liquid flow off his liquid flow. I admit that I’m still getting used to liking Australian accents in rap, but his quick-to-flip tongue and smart (if silly at times) lyrics make this a great new track, and a bright new player in the Aus rap scene.

De La Soul, God It ft. Nas
Does a De La Soul track ft. Nas even need much of a writeup? The rap legends have joined forces for an instant classic, a refreshingly old-school track in a constantly forward-moving genre. Stripped back and bare, there’s a distinctly retro vibe and I really like it. De La Soul recently announced that they will be funding their forthcoming fifth album via Kickstarter, and while this track will not be featured, it’s a sign of the sweet, sweet tunes to come. Expect features from Damon Albarn, Little Dragon, 2 Chainz and more.