Quickspins – New music from Nov. 25, 2013

Karneef – Love Between Us (Club Roll Music; 2013)

Montreal native, Philip Karneef, offers up one stellar record with his debut Love Between Us. The album, which dropped earlier in November, is fueled with  intergalactic beats, killer bass-lines and soulful vocals. The title track is downright groovy with space-age sounds sprinkled throughout. “So Trippy,” featuring Cadence Weapon, is a retro-inspired tune true to its name. Complete with Karneef’s narrated instructions on how to turn your dull evening into one hell of a night, the track dives into a medley of synth, layered with the two sets of musicians’ vocals.

Staying true to the album’s groovy and raw nature, he dishes out unapologetic lyrics in “Space.” Pleading for some time alone, the track is paired with some equally raw, pounding background percussion. Karneef’s Love Between Us is exactly what a debut album should sound like: it’s playful, soulful and witty all at once, showcasing the local musician’s versatility and ambition.

Trial Track: “Space”

Rating: 8.5/10

-Jessica Romera


Jake Bugg – Shangri La (Mercury, Island Records; 2013)

After topping the UK charts with his debut self-titled album late last year, English teen Jake Bugg’s newest installment, Shangri-La, hits store shelves Nov. 19. Rebel and hitmaker, Bugg once again defies the laws of music by creating an album poised to impress audiophiles of all shapes and sizes. Under the wing of legendary producer Rick Rubin, Bugg proves he’s more than just a temporary teen sensation. Boasting Britpop-style vocals back-boned by a consistently sanguine bevy of earworm grooves, he effortlessly bridges the gap between folk and pop. Shangri-La is more than just your average dangerously catchy follow-up album; it’s cold hard proof that Bugg is well-equipped to make a lasting impression on the music world.

Trial Track: “Slumville Sunrise”

Rating: 9/10

-Victoria Kendrick


Jake Bugg – Shangri La (Mercury, Island Records; 2013)

Hailed by some as the new Bob Dylan and self-professed “genuine and natural alternative to ‘The X Factor’ shit,” the outspoken 19-year-old English singer-songwriter is already a polarizing figure in the current music scene.

Shangri La takes its name from the famed Malibu studio where the sophomore release was conceived. With the aid of renowned producer Rick Rubin, Bugg has managed to follow-up his critically-acclaimed self-titled debut album in less than 13 months. With the new release, we see a departure from the fake vinyl crackle and affected vocals of his debut, into a more electric, Britpop direction.

It’s clear that Jake Bugg has talent, but Shangri La feels uninspired and rushed. By shedding his ’60s Dylan-esque sound for a post-Oasis/Arctic Monkeys veneer, Bugg risks losing some of his appeal and individuality as a musician.

Trial Track: “All Your Reasons”

Rating: 6/10

-Paul Traunero


Yo Gotti – I Am Album (CMG, Epic Records; 2013)

Hailing from Memphis, Tennessee, Yo Gotti has put out an impressive amount of music in his 15 years of recording. He’s doing most of his music independently, however, which might explain why he is not quite a household name. I Am has a star-studded feature list; Yo Gotti’s created tracks with Wale, Ne-Yo and J-Cole, subtly showing off his connection and respect wit

Trial Track: “Don’t Come Around”hin the music world. The music itself is much like Gotti’s previous work, never straying from the theme of ‘hustler-to-music-maker.’ This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it does get a bit tired and repetitive. “Don’t Come Around” is definitely one of the best tracks on the album. Featuring Kendall Morgan’s rich, smooth hook, Gotti’s lyrics get sensitive: he speaks critically about the common perception of rap music and rappers, as well as his personal problems with his friends and his lifestyle choices. The whole album, unfortunately, is not particularly groundbreaking. The beats are good but not amazing — most of the songs are nice to roll with but not too memorable — but it definitely has some great aspects though, so check it out.

Rating: 7/10

-Maddy Comi

The Growlers – Gilded Pleasures (Everloving Records; 2013)

It’s “fursure” a Growlers album; it’s drug drenched and salt-stained on a sunny beach. These musical magicians have shown clear signs of having perfected their signature Growler sound, but this album is too safely confined into a “general Growlers song” formula. It’s lacking the extraordinary moments that make the Growlers out of this world. A lot of the new material sounds like stuff you can find on their older albums, like the intro riff to “Sea Lion Goth Blues,” the dreamy repetition in “Freedom Children,” even the whole incredible song “Red Tide.” One song off Gilded Pleasures, “Tell It How It Is,” bubbles near that unique magic. It’s happy, cool, catchy, and it’ll make you want to bop up and down. “Humdrum Blues” is a smooth little romantic song in which Brooks Nielsen shows-off his seamless raspy pipes. Overall, the album has got a great atmosphere, as if the sound was filtered through all the weird treasures the band had collected over the years on the road.

Trial Track: “Tell It How It Is”

Rating: 6.5/10

-Mia Pearson




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