Farewell to Craig Mack, new tunes by Rebounder, Leon Bridges and more this week
Hailey Tuck: Alcohol
Gently jazzy and undeniably charmed, Hailey Tuck's cover of "Alcohol" keeps the original Kinks' wit intact but lends it some glamour. The track will appear on Tuck's forthcoming album Junk (out 4 May) which is produced by Larry Klein, a contemporary jazz mastermind. It's Tuck's effervescence and allure, however, that makes for the winning combination.
Rebounder: Japanese Posters
Anyone who's listened to "Japanese Posters" and looked into the act behind it, Rebounder, knows two things: the song's an utter delight and the band's anonymous. From the sharp lyricism to the compelling orchestration and tip-top production, the track captivates as it progresses. We can also be certain that there's more to come.
Craig Mack feat. Notorious BIG, LL Cool J, Busta Rhymes + Rampage: Flava In Ya Ear (Remix)
Craig Mack—the first artist signed to Sean Combs' Bad Boy label—has passed away at just 46 years old. First making waves when he was featured on a remix of Mary J. Blige's "You Don't Have To Worry" (1993), he rose to fame at the same time as Notorious BIG and Puff Daddy, who featured on perhaps his most famous track, a remix of his own "Flava in Ya Ear." Sampling O'Donel Levy's "We've Only Just Begun," the track remains a bop to this day and also features verses by Busta Rhymes, LL Cool J and Rampage—a perfect example of a posse cut. The video—also iconic—was one of the earlier clips directed by Hype Williams.
Leon Bridges: Bet Ain't Worth the Hand
One of two new singles from R&B artist Leon Bridges, "Bet Ain't Worth the Hand" declares its intentions with the opening notes: to transfix and inspire. Another beautiful offering from the soulful singer, the track offers a healthy dose of self-reflection while basking in the contemplation of a relationship. It will appear on Bridges' sophomore release Good Thing, out on 4 May.
The Decemberists: Once In My Life
With "Once In My Life," The Decemberists tap into their ability to soar gently, sailing along elegant waves of wonder and whimsy. It's a beautiful track, drawn from their forthcoming album I'll Be Your Girl, and makes clear the power of frontman Colin Meloy's vocals and songwriting.