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Hype Monitor: Brajo, Avi Buffalo, The Flowers of Hell

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The Band: Brajo
The Buzz: Orlando rapper falls somewhere to the left of Lil Wayne, with a relaxed, groggy flow and a penchant for verbal puns.
Listen If: You're looking for an MC who knows how to split the difference between old school soul samples and new school blip-hop.
Key Track: You can conveniently preview his whole new mixtape on his MySpace, but we'd suggest starting out with "Through to You," where Brajo lays his ragged croak over a sped-up chipmunk soul sample -- it's the kind of song that should be booming out of every drop-top this summer.

The Band: Avi Buffalo
The Buzz: Long Beach band perfects the midwest sound, writing campfire folk ballads that are as engaging as they are eccentric.
Listen If: You like your music to sound like it's beamed in from the beyond: big, spooky songs that creak like the floorboards in a haunted house.
Key Track: "One Last," a weird, weepy lullaby made up of nothing more than spiraling acoustics and weird, warbly vocals. Simultaneously unsettling and sublime.

The Band: The Flowers of Hell
The Buzz: Not to be confused with the Hothouse Flowers, we guess, the Flowers of Hell take orchestral pop to the next level, writing string-and-brass-based songs that feel more like symphonies.
Listen If: You've often wondered what it would be like for an orchestra to release a covers album of ambient songs
Key Track: "Blumchen," a slow, soothing, expansive number that glides, gently as a stream, from start to finish

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