Legendary is a word that oft comes to mind when H.E.R. comes to mind. With 25 Grammy-nominations and 5 wins, the songstress is truly a titan of the industry, and seems to mature more with every release cycle. We have now been blessed with her latest offering, “The Journey”. In collaboration with ESPN for the NBA playoffs, the star unveils this dazzling and emotionally potent ballad that reflects on her own past successes and tribulations as she embarks on the next chapter of her artistry.
Heart-rendering ballads, triumphant UK rap and the album we’ve all been waiting for: dig into this week’s list!
H.E.R. – “The Journey”
KAYTRAMINÈ ft. Amaarae – “Sossaup”
The most exciting collaboration of the year has come to a climax with the release of their self titled debut album. KAYTRANDA and Aminé have merged their musicality and creative direction for KAYTRAMINE, and the results are everything we could have hoped for. The album is meticulous, a marvel from two mavericks who bring out the best in each other. The LP’s features are inspired, not least the inclusion of Amaarae on the colour-laden cut “Sossaup”. The Ghanian-American finds her pocket seamlessly, merging perfectly with Kay’s vibrant production and Aminé’s jaw dropping performance.
Potter Payper – Real Back In Style
UK rap fans of truly been blessed in the last couple of weeks! Following the release of Nines’ electric and introspective LP Crop Circle 2 a few weeks back, we have now been treated to the long awaited debut album from one of the scene’s most undeniable talents. Potter Payper stands out for a lot of reasons; his lyrical acumen is up there with the greats, his ability to tell a story is borderline unparalleled, and his flow, tone and expression is nothing short of scintillating. After a run of iconic mixtapes, Real Back In Style is Potter’s most impressive moment to date. Eclectic, immersive, heartbreaking and triumphant, this is the work of a visionary talent who doesn’t deserve his flowers – more like an entire shrubbery.
Lewis Capaldi – Broken By Desire To Be Heavenly Sent
Scottish sensation Lewis Capaldi solidifies his claim to stardom with his stellar sophomore album. After amassing a huge following with initial hit singles like “Someone You Loved” and his subsequent debut album Divinely Uninspired To A Hellish Extent. He has now returned with his follow up LP, Broken By Desire To Be Heavenly Sent that augments his craft and embellishes his acclaim amongst critics and fans alike.
New Dad – “In My Head”
Irish four-piece NewDad are leading the wave of grunge-tilting indie that is encompassing guitar music at this moment. From the hauntingly beautiful yet magnetic vocals to the all consuming soundscapes, the band have their aesthetic down to the tee, and are exploring from the foundation that they themselves have lay down. Their newest offering is a refined yet expansive journey, ethereal but grounded, hazy but focused. There’s not may hotter bands than NewDad, and it feels like they’re revealing in that fact.
Elli Ingram – Bad Behaviour
Brighton born Elli Ingram offers her all on her latest album, Bad Behaviour. Created with her long-time collaborator Aston Rudi, The singer’s rich vocal textures offer a vibrant tapestry for her to thread strands of neo-soul and flecks of hip-hop elements. The 13-track project delves into themes of vulnerability and the misadventures of adulthood as she finds her anchorage in the maelstrom of her life and career. The album features notable tracks such as ‘No Plan B’ and ‘Fool’s Gold’ featuring Mahalia. Elli’s Bad Behaviour Tour will kick off in October, and she will also be making appearances at various festivals and exclusive performances throughout the summer.
Ruti – “Nothing’s Easy”
There is cascading colour to the sonic universe that Ruti inhabits. With a new project on route, entitled MixTea_MilkTape!, we are about to catch a further glimpse into the musical genius of Ruti, but for now we have been blessed with a third taster into the forthcoming body of work. “Nothing’s Easy” blurs genre like a lens out of focus, drawing from far and wide on the smooth and silky number.
Becky Hill – “Side Effect”
Two time Brit award winner Becky Hill is entering her next artistic chapter with this infectious new single, “Side Effect”. Her first single of the year, Becky has welcomed us into the next chapter of her artistic development; accompanied by a video directed by hotly tipped visionary KC Locke, the singer-songwriter brings her usual effervescence and prowess to her performance, while the lyricism is suitably relatable and emotionally potent.
BODUR – “DON’T BEAT THE SWEET OUT OF MY BOY”
What began as a poem to define her younger brothers transition to manhood later developed into an enchanting landscape produced by Lapsung. Both poetic and rhythmic, “DON’T BEAT THE SWEET OUT OF MY BOY” is a plea to the tight grip toxic masculinity can hold over young men. BODUR cracked the code by enlisting Denzel Himself – who is notoriously strict about collaborations – for the only collaboration on forthcoming EP ÖZ expected next month. It’s as mesmerising as it is sensual and powerful!
Virgin Miri ft. Young Thug – “Make A Movie”
Swedish pop sensation Virgin Miri instantly defines herself as a standout prospect emerging across the landscape. Recruiting US rap superstar Young Thug while co-producing the infectious soundscape alongside GRAMMY-winning producer T-Minus, Miri’s brand-new record “Make A Movie” is one that can’t be missed. Floating across dark, sprawling basslines and sleek electronic flashes, Miri teases her effortless vocal range before Thugger flexes with typical finesse. The two embody an electric synergy while expressing empowerment and the blinding lust that takes control when exploring a sultry love interest. Already rubbing shoulders with some of the most influential artists across the scene, Virgin Miri’s grippingly unique artistry sets her as a serious one to watch this year.
Boy Bleach — “East End Boys”
The East London alt-rock band Boy Bleach is back with an infectious track, “East End Boys”. With a distinctly British sound, it discusses the gentrification of their neighbourhood and community. Electronics and piercing vocals create a full-bodied soundscape that will reach every corner of your room, with an explosion of raw energy. Their dedicated fanbase, which they built while touring the UK and Europe, is in for a treat with this track.
ZHU — “Revelations”
The Grammy-nominated artist ZHU collaborated with Devault and BabyJake on a new single, “Revelations”, and it’s incredible. A soul-searching, introspective song, it gives space to each artist as they contemplate what brought them to this point in their journeys. Incredibly powerful and meaningful, ZHU exclaims: “I’m excited to get into this new era of my artistry and start releasing music again. There will be many revelations to come.” Take a listen or watch the equally as enticing video.
Amelia Moore — “FUMD”
With over 150 million streams of her debut EP, teaching a robot to love, Amelia Moore is back with a new single with jxdn. Titled “FUMD”, it combines her expertise across emotional and meaningful songwriting, electric-alt-pop production, and instrumentalism. With another recent single, “name everywhere”, she lets her voice out and we’re lucky to hear what she has to say. Inventive, edgy, and experimental, Amelia continues to impress and show she’s one to watch.
Ash Walker — “Automaton”
Ash Walker released the second single from his upcoming album, Astronaut. Coming out on 30 June, it is set to be an expansive body of work crossing between jazz, blues, funk, and reggae. This new track, entitled “Automaton”, features jazz artist Oscar Jerome and keyboard player, composer, collaborator, and producer Joe Armon-Jones — and gives us further insight into what we can expect. “This record was inspired by my deep-rooted love of Dub,” Walker explains. “‘Automaton’ is the story of a robotic being with a heart, jaded by the woes of life and modern society, lost in a world of 1’s and 0’s but every night they stare at the moon, thinking that there is more to the universe than just numbers and start to feel their heart pulsing. Told that they’ll never feel as they’re a robot, the more they look to the sky, the more they feel… Knowing that something else is out there.”
Samuel Jack — “Borderline”
Ahead of his debut album, The Gold & The Glory, Samuel Jack shares his new single, “Borderline”. A track about wishing we could change past decisions, it is both personal and universal. Meshing his classic singer-songwriter talent with pop sounds and hints of blues and hip-hop, he gives us another glimpse into what we can expect with the June 16 album release. Heart-wrenching and fun at the same time, this versatile single is a standout.
Albertina – Waiting 4 Life
Born in West Yorkshire and currently based in London, the Caribbean multi-disciplinary artist Albertina has released her new EP, Waiting 4 Life. She plays with a variety of genres, from classical to Garage and Grime, incorporating all influences into a complex yet cohesive sound. Produced with strong synths and vocals, her raw lyrics touch on ideas of loneliness and escapism. Further exemplifying her uniqueness as an artist, she has released an accompanying music video that spans across the entire EP. Powerfully vulnerable, she tells her personal story and lets us into her journey.
Blake Ruby – She
Blake Ruby has released an 11-track album, titled She, and it’s a beautiful chapter for the indie pop artist. Nostalgic and full of love, he embraces vulnerability and reveals the emotions that come from loving someone fully — through every phase of adulthood. The standout focus track, “Youth”, reminisces on the early origins of his own love story. Clear, honey-like melodies are layered over intricate production with organic, intentional imperfections that keep you on your toes — just like love does.
Shayla McDaniel — “Good Thoughts for Bad Times”
Based in Knoxville, Tennessee, singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Shayla McDaniel has released her newest chapter of indie-pop. With her classic dreamy, crystal clear vocals, she lets her melodies soar and brings her sound to life. As a whole, the track feels beautifully bittersweet. With vulnerable and honest lyrics, she sings earnestly about storing away good memories in your mind for when you’ll need them most. Set to a full soundscape with uplifting, groovy notes, it combines hope and anxiety in a satisfying, captivating, and meaningful manner.
J. Mystery — “Better Days”
Singer-songwriter J.MYSTERY released their new single “Better Days”, a layered and dynamic piano track. Experimenting with autotune and synths, the artist blends genres and creates his own sound that transfixes his listeners. On top of the multi-instrumental atmosphere, J.MYSTERY showcases his dynamic vocal range through meaningful lyrics detailing hope amid chaos and loss — or in his own words, “hope that despite everything going wrong, tomorrow will be a better day”.