Commander Chris Hadfield: Space Oddity
For his final bow after months commanding the International Space Station, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded a music video from space. In covering David Bowie's 1969 song, "Space Oddity," Hadfield was able to croon a viral phenomenon that has inspired over a 12 million views in the week following its release. Hearing the 53-year-old sing about the fictional astronaut "Major Tom"—whose failed mission was revised by Hadfield for a happy ending and successful landing—one would be hard-pressed not to tear up. It doesn't hurt that the video was expertly directed, recorded and edited—making it one for the history books.
Classixx: A Stranger Tonight (feat. Sarah Chernoff)
The go-to guys for seriously produced remixes, Classixx finally dropped an album of their own for the first time on Tuesday. Anyone feeling deflated by the arguably lackluster Daft Punk release will find solace in Hanging Gardens, which fuses fresh talent with nostalgic '80s dance vibes. Friends like LCD Soundsystem's Nancy Whang and Active Child appear on the duo's gripping debut album, but we're most hooked on "A Stranger Tonight," which features the youthfully sophisticated and unmistakable vocals of Superhumanoids' Sarah Chernoff.
Nosaj Thing + Chance The Rapper: Paranoia
Los Angeles-based producer Nosaj Thing, known for his work with Kendrick Lamar and Kid Cudi, teamed up with new MC on the block, Chance the Rapper of Chicago, on the hip-hop-meets-chillwave track "Paranoia." Nosaj's soft-edged production, laden with tonal melodies compliment Chance the Rapper's mixed pace verses and vocal range. "Paranoia" critically examines the Windy City's rampant gun problems from a first-person perspective, giving an emotional and personal dimension to a major US issue. "Paranoia" originally appeared as a part of the "Yours Truly" series from Adidas, which curates collaborations between producers and rappers. The track also appears on Chance the Rapper's recently released mixtape "Acid Rap," which crashed several websites due to high traffic.
Mount Kimbie: Made To Stray
Mount Kimbie, aka British electronic duo Dominic Maker and Kai Campos, has fast become one of the most respected modern alternative acts since the 2010 debut LP Crooks & Lovers. That album came out on the brilliant Hotflush Recordings, while the follow up Cold Spring Fault Less Youth (which is due on 27 May 2013) is set for release on the British institution that is Warp Records. This song "Made To Stray" is the first to be premiered from their new LP and is a perfect example of how far they're pushing on from the over-used (and lazily categorized) "post-dubstep" genre they were put into after their first release. In 2013, Mount Kimbie's sound belongs in a category all of its own. Download the track for free via their website.
Steve Mason: Monkey Minds In The Devil's Time
Since the demise of The Beta Band almost 10 years ago, its lead singer Steve Mason has been steadily delivering music in the guise of King Biscuit Time and then, under his own name, he released Boys Outside in 2010. His new album, Monkey Minds In The Devil's Time, sounds like it might just be his best work to date. Lyrically, there's a sense that Mason's introspective tendencies are chanelling confidence rather than self-doubt, while musically, the album is made up of Beta Band-like experimental instrumentals, spoken word interludes and probably the pure-toned singer's most anthemic, beautifully crafted creations yet.