Featured Stories

B-Ju – Mia Got a New Haircut – free mp3

German beat maker B-Ju shares a geometric beat with glitched effects and neon textures from his latest, Prozak People. While this cut comes from across the Atlantic, it sounds like something from California’s Low End Theory-led electronica underground. To narrow it down, B-Ju makes digital waves with primary colors in the same pool as SF producer Salva.

Download “Mia Got a New Haricut” [XLR8R]


Midnight Door – The Beautiful Truth – free mp3

Counting Bobby McFerrin, Yo-Yo Ma and Sonic Youth among his influences, Luke Janela leads Los Angeles-based “Midnight Door” with his thick, soaring cello leads. Yeah, a cello, and there’s not much else to the group’s sound except the occasional, hazy vocals and persistent, pop-slanted rhythms. If that sounds like something the weird drama-class kids at school would come up with and play at low volumes in their beat up Volvos on the way to museums, you’re absolutely right. And it’s absolutely something we really like. Check out “The Beautiful Truth” (of course it is) from Midnight Door’s latest, Tomorrow Was.

Download “Tomorrow Was”


Fort Romeau – SW9 – free mp3

UK producer Fort Romeau debuts this month with Kingdoms. From the feel of the stylish lead single, “SW9”, it sounds like one of those hypnotic deep house trips to the range on the techno spectrum dominated by Four Tet and Caribou. And that’s not a bad thing. In fact, we really like where this is headed…

Download “SW9” [XLR8R]


Luke Roberts – His Song – free mp3

Nashville by-way-of Montana by-way-of Brooklyn troubadour Luke Roberts is gearing up to release his second LP, The Iron Gates at Throop and Newport (due March 20th). We here Roberts now owns a guitar, so it seems things are looking up for the melancholy singer. But as you’ll hear on lead single “His Song”, Roberts still clings to a romantic sense of sadness, and expresses himself in with an understated, ordinary charm.


Keep Shelly in Athens – DIY (New Division remix) – free mp3

SoCal dance rockers New Division (pictured above) give Keep Shelly in Athens’ tightly wound, dark-waver “DIY” a neon-lit, after-hours pulse. It’s an approach familiar to New Division fans, and one that brings an excellent spark to this cut’s more shadowy origins. We’ve got both versions here so you can do a Pepsi Challenge-type game with your friends…


Death Grips – Lost Boys – free mp3

Sacramento avant hip-hop destructoids Death Grips surprised us earlier this year when they announced they’re signing to a major label, Epic. The only thing major about their sound is how obnoxiously abrasive it is, which we think is totally rad, but we’re not sure where the mass market / business opportunity is for a big ol’ bank like Epic.

Anyway, the latest leak from the first of Death Grip’s two planned 2012 albums, The Money Store, is available below. It’s more of the same raw, warped, bitching hip-hop we came to anxiously expect on the group’s jarring debut, Exmiliatry (which, by the way, you can still get for free).

Download “Lost Boys” [Stereogum]


House of Wolves – Follow Me – free mp3

Los Angeles singer/songwriter Rey Villalobos delivers a warm, ethereal wash of acoustic ambiance on “Follow Me”, the lead single from his forthcoming LP, “Fold in the Wind”. Fans of Sufjan Stevens and Elliott Smith will find plenty to cling to and drift away with here. Look for Fold in the Wind in stores April 6th.


Stream Wild Belle’s tiny breakthrough ‘Keep You’

Aside from getting a lot of mainstream publications excited (Chicago Tribune, Rolling Stone) down at SXSW this year, we don’t know much about the brother/sister duo called Wild Belle. But we like what we hear from Elliot and Natalie Bergman, even if they will be one of NPR’s favorite break through artists of 2012 (we guarantee it). It’s rounded+glossed indie pop, but instead of playing the breezy country card or repeating the hazy dream pop script, they take their lead single, “Keep You”, down a dub-infused path. And it’s worth following for a bit…

A little more familiar, but no less charming, is “Take Me Away”.


Quakers – Smoke (f. Jonwayne) – free mp3

Portishead’s Geoff Barrow is the ringleader of a new hip-hop collective boasting 35 members, “Quakers”. We’re not sure if there are any actual Quakers on the roster, but we know LA producer-turned-rapper Jonwayne is involved, so are some super-funky beats. Hear both on this cut, “Smoke”…

Download “Smoke” [Stones Throw]

Look out for Quakers self-titled debut on Stones Throw, March 27.


Diplo tees up ‘Express Yourself’ EP

Diplo has our attention again this month with “Express Yourself”, the title track from his forthcoming EP (due in May). Earlier, we were impressed with his warped remix of Katy B’s “Witches Brew” (free download). Now, the Philadelphia DJ brings us something more grimy, and a lot more jagged, featuring vocals from Nicky Da B who, by the way, sports a camo Cosby sweater throughout the clip. High swag!

Download “Express Yourself (f. Nicky Da B)” [Stereogum]