Playlist: Kendrick Lamar and 7 More New Albums to Hear Now - Rolling Stone
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Kendrick Lamar, John Mayer and 6 More New Albums You Can Hear Right Now

Also: The ‘Fate of the Furious’ soundtrack, Actress’ ‘AZD,’ Spoek Mathambo’s ‘Mzansi Beat Code’ and more.

Friday New Music Throwdown: April 14Friday New Music Throwdown: April 14

Actress, Kendrick Lamar and John Mayer have albums you can hear now.

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Kendrick Lamar, Damn.
Lyrical/musical/political vanguard Kendrick Lamar has just dropped what may stand as the most seismic hip-hop release of 2017. We haven’t had time to fully absorb it, but initial reactions suggest
it’s both pointed and intimate, this time a mix of scathing treatises on the
media and personal reflections.
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

Spoek Mathambo, Mzansi Beat Code
Like Prince, to whom Johannesburg’s Spoek Mathambo been compared, this is a creative mind intent on leading, not following. Mzansi Beat Code, his best set yet and one of the year’s most thrilling pop rides by any measure, is less an avant-pop LP with club-music fixations than a killer DJ mix with a muscular song sense. “Want Ur Love” has Mathambo’s band stutter-strutting digital funk under the sister-duo Kajama, who deliver the year’s most resonant chant so far: “For fuck’s sake, love!”
Read Our Feature: Brilliant, Genre-Blurred African Pop Artists Thrive in Age of Xenophobia
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

Actress, AZD
London’s Actress is already one of underground electronic music’s most acclaimed modern artists for his unique “R&B concrète“: monstrous, masterful, expressionist soundscapes made from familiar bass booms, harsh avant-noise prickles, nostalgic melodies and ASMR tickles. However, if you try to dance to it, you were usually out of luck. Fifth album AZD brings his hazy mush of the uncanny, the experimental and the half-remembered on to the dance floor – or at least to the general vicinity of the dance floor. Bathroom-mirroring the recent work of Actress fans like Lee Gamble, Actress says his album is “that moment in the club, in the side room which is less habituated where the music is more diffused from the main club, smoked out and disorientating.” That means this is a hard-pounding rave, but distant, nauseous and, at one point, drowned in overheard conversations. Christopher R. Weingarten
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

Also of Note

John Mayer, The Search for Everything
“This is the longest I’ve gone in the incubation process of a record,” says John Mayer, from the complex of rooms at Capitol Studios where he has spent hundreds of hours working on his new LP, The Search For Everything. Mayer tells Rolling Stone he knew from the outset that he wanted to make as ambitious an album as possible. “My starting point is, ‘I want to leave the Earth as a writer,'” he explains. “I wasn’t interested in doing anything I’ve done before, and I wanted to stoke the fire of abstraction and just start punching hard.” The singer, who has also spent the past couple years touring with former members of the Grateful Dead as Dead & Company, says he wanted The Search For Everything to be the kind of massive production you associate with classic Seventies albums like Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours.
Read Our Feature: John Mayer Details Origin, Inspiration Behind Four New Songs
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

Various Artists, The Fate of the Furious: The Album
This star-studded soundtrack is pretty much a past and future XXL Freshmen issue thrown into one of America’s biggest platforms, a who’s-who of rappers and rap-centric singers in various stages of moving from the cutting edge of mixtape fame to mainstream popularity. Just listing a few names is like getting a cheat sheet to the last six months (and the next six months) of mixapes: Travis Scott, Migos, Lil Yachty, Young Thug, Ty Dolla Sign, Kodak Black, PnB Rock, Lil Uzi Vert, G-Eazy, Kehlani, A Boogie With Da Hoodie, 21 Savage and Rico Nasty.
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

Chris Shiflett, West Coast Town
On his infectious new solo song “West Coast Town,” Foo Fighters guitarist Chris Shiflett flawlessly blends blue-collar country punk with a catchy Bakersfield bounce. Borrowing the rowdy swagger of Prison Bound-era Social Distortion and the SoCal sheen of Buck Owens and Dwight Yoakam, Shiflett crafts a sound that is both geographically grounded and wholly his own.
Read Our Interview: Hear Foo Fighters’ Chris Shiflett’s New Country Song ‘West Coast Town’
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

String Cheese Incident, Believe
The jam band titans return with their seventh album, produced by Talking Heads keyboardist/guitarist Jerry Harrison.
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited

Andre Cymone, 1969
Cymone was the bass player for Prince’s hard-churning pre-Revolution days and an underrated New Wave funk-rocker in his own right throughout the Eighties. The from his second album since re-emerging in 2012 chugs with the everyday-people crunch of Nineties Lenny Kravitz and the revolution-rock of Sixties Sly Stone.
Hear: Spotify / Apple Music / Tidal / Amazon Music Unlimited


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