It’s the first week of the new year! Aren’t you excited? Oh right, you probably have to go to work/school tomorrow. Alright, well, let me get ya pumped with my playlist for the week!

(Don’t feel like reading through? Check out the Spotify playlist instead!)

Darius — Hot Hands

Alright, to be honest with you, there’s no real big hits that pop up just four days into the new year. However, I’ve had some older jams pop into my head recently like “Hot Hands” off of Darius’ Romance EP from February ’14.

Hold up…has it really been that long since this came out? It still sounds fresh!

I know, right? Honestly, the only reason this song’s been in my head is because I’ve been heavily playing Nick Benet’s “Foolture” which features the same resonant chords as this track. Instead of that song’s deep house groove though, you’re getting a much smoother, sexier pop song with some light tropical vibes. Need a song that’ll warm you up? This is the one.

Young Franco — Don’t U Want Me (ft. Blair De Milo)

I found some pretty good artists back when Pilerats dropped their first compilation back in 2014, and Young Franco is no exception. His contribution was a flip of Stargard’s “Wear It Out,” which yeah, it’s been done before, but I was still pretty interested in the dude.

Flash forward to this track, and now he’s pumping out solid singles. Kaytranada-style chords highlight the track, and the vocals and lyrics sound like something off a Disclosure single. It’s all pretty familiar, I know, but it still sounds pretty rad.

Riton — Rinse And Repeat (ft. Kah-Lo)

I have no idea who these two are but this song is HOT! I have a feeling it’ll stay in my rotation throughout the month, and it’s already making waves elsewhere, topping the Beatport chart as of this writing. Pumping basslines compliment a rather monotonous female lead that is more infectious than the plague. I looooove it and I want more immediately!

gajoga — Lonely Coral Reefs (OTTM Remix)

Look, I don’t like to write these posts to promote my own music, but is it cool if I give the homie OTTM a shoutout for remixing my track into a much better one? If you like dream pop and chill music, like Teen Daze and Telepopmusik, give this track a listen.

Kanye West — Champion

I’ve been bumping this ever since I heard Harrison’s edit in his 3AM Mix and it’s nice to hear that old Kanye sound again. I’m a pretty huge Kanye fan, but I’m actively trying not to listen to his old music so that I can stumble upon it and it can sound fresh to my ears. And this track is just…wow. This is peak Yeezy. Classic sample reinvigorated into a new beat, and lyrics that are easy to understand. What’s not to love?

Hey aj, have you heard that new Kanye track though?

Kanye West — FACTS…actually wait, is this for real?

This is actually not in rotation this week on account for how literally awful this track is. You know, Yeezus wasn’t really up to par with MBDTF, but this track makes Yeezus look like Late Registration. The sample in the beginning was great, but the beat fades away and Yeezy starts rapping like Future, parodying “Jumpman” with none of the swagger or skill that Drake & Future provided on that song. Then you hear Ye scream at around 1:13, with the line “I was out here spazzin,’ now ya’ll get the message!” It’s very cringeworty to listen to.

The track has one amazing line however. Honestly, if the whole track featured lines as incredible as this one, I would have immediately stopped making music of my own, because nothing that anyone could ever create would top a track like this. Just let me blow you away for a second with the rap line of the year:

COUCHES COUCHES COUCHES COUCHES: WHICH ONE SHOULD I PICK?

Yeah, I know. It’s 2016 and Kanye is dropping lines that LIL B would lazily drop on stuff like I’m Thraxx. And some people are defending this thing by saying it’s a freestyle, but I’ve still heard much better from even Kanye himself .

Honestly, it’s just super disappointing to hear a track like this after Ye has been saying that his next album is coming at some point in the future. Is this the kind of quality that fans should be expecting on SWISH? Or is this just a one-off, phoned-in thing made while Kanye was exhausted from taking care of his young children all day?

Mladen Tomic / “Before Sunset” — Bit of a long (and older) track, but i’m digging the infinitely sliding bassline and slight similarity to this track.

Clipse / “When The Last Time” — Older hip hop track from 2002 that’s a classic in my book. Features unforgettable production from The Neptunes and Pusha T before people really cared about him.

What So Not / Gemini EP — I listened to it a lot over Christmas week, but it dropped down in rotation quick. It’s good if you like trap music, but there’s nothing particularly unique about it.

Like I said above, there’s not much happening right now in the music world. My main bro gave me a copy of the recently released Nujabes’ & Shing02's Luv(sic) Hexalogy CD so I’ll probably be giving that a proper listen this week. But besides that, there’s not much on the list. Have something I should listen to? Let me know in the comments!


(‘in rotation’ is a [probably] weekly feature that I’m actually going to try and keep up with this year. I’ve said it many times before, but this time I’m semi-serious.)
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