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Ryan Hemsworth performs in virtual reality, a washing machine album and more in this week's music

by CH Editors
on 20 December 2015
Ryan Hemsworth feat. Kotomi: Surrounded

In the music video for electronic dance track "Surrounded," Ryan Hemsworth dons a spandex motion-capture suit, an Oculus Rift Gear VR and performs in an imagined world. Though he's jamming out alone in "real life," vocalist Kotomi and a bandmate support him on the virtual stage (set inside a cathedral that might be familiar for Assassin's Creed players) and they're joined by dancing fans from around the world, who are wearing their own headsets. There's a fine line between connection and isolation here, and director Martin Pariseau gives viewers goosebumps and a crazy urge to "plug into" this concert themselves.

Matmos: Ultimate Care II Excerpt Five

Conceptual electronic duo Matmos have created a whole album from sounds sampled from the (now discontinued) Whirlpool Ultimate Care™ II washing machine in their Baltimore basement—and the results (industrial music meets musique concrète, with dance and drone sprinkled in) will have you considering dirty laundry (and spin cycles) in an entirely new light. The semi-psychedelic music video for "Ultimate Care II Excerpt Five" is a montage of washing machine-themed archive material discovered on the internet, plus some present-day footage of the recorded washer itself. Ultimate Care II releases 19 February 2016 from Thrill Jockey Records and will feature guest spots from local neighbors like Dan Deacon and Jason Willett of Half Japanese.

Saul Williams: The Noise Came From Here

Activist, artist, actor, poet and all-around Renaissance man Saul Williams won't rest until the world is free. Creating music to march to, his newest track "The Noise Comes From Here" channels the energy of a restless people, sampling chants and claps. Sometimes it's easier to "shut out" the global issues of inequality, poverty, war and more, but Williams' work inspires listeners to look at the issues straight in the face and question the status quo. Williams' upcoming album MartyrLoserKing, narrated from the perspective of a fictional hacker character living in Burundi, will be released 29 January 2016.

Rudimental feat. Ed Sheeran, Big Sean + Vic Mensa: Lay It All On Me (Remix)

Big Sean and Vic Mensa joined forces with east London collective Rudimental (aka Piers Agget, Amir Amor, Kesi Dryden, Israel Lochhead and DJ Locksmith) for a super-fresh sounding remix of their track "Lay It All On Me"—which also features Ed Sheeran. The contrast between the house-tinged tune, ride-or-die raps and Sheeran's gentle vocals make for a charming rework that has something for everyone.

ListenUp is a Cool Hunting series published every Sunday that rounds up the music we tweeted throughout the week, also found in Listen. Hear the year so far via Cool Hunting Spotify.

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