Rob Base and DJ E-Z Rock: It Takes Two
Last weekend the music world lost two influential members: Chicago house producer DJ Rashad passed on Saturday, while Sunday saw the death of hip-hop's Rodney "Skip" Bryce, better known as DJ E-Z Rock and one-half of the duo behind the 1988 hit "It Takes Two." EZ-Rock's longtime friend and music collaborator Rob Base tells Rolling Stone, "Skip was a joker. He was a good DJ, but everybody just loved him for who he was; just a funny guy." And of the video they made themselves for a track which reached widespread admiration, "Skip's dancing was him just clowning around and being the joker that he was and they filmed it. Everybody loved him."
Club Kuru: All the Days
London-based Club Kuru's recent single "All the Days" is a sun-drenched slice of easy listening, indie R&B. While the song on its own—the band's first release in a year—is worth a listen and will likely find a home on many summer jam playlists, the video is an absolute must-see. Perfectly reflecting the aesthetics of the song, the Danny Sangra-directed short sees the band's singer Laurie Erskine living the (bittersweet) dream on the Adriatic coast with Icelandic model Sif Agustsdottir. Layered, experimental and delightfully intoxicating, the video and track are both easy to get lost in.
As fans of HUH Magazine's monthly Spotify playlists, we asked music editor Joe Reeve to tell us what he has on heavy rotation when he's not mixing it up for the London-based publication. Reeve's #PrivateJam champions the twin brothers Alessi, and their 1976 track "Seabird." He tells us, "I’ve been making a conscious effort to listen to older stuff this year as I’m normally bombarded with all things new. Along with Roy Ayers' 'Everybody Loves The Sunshine' and Jan Hammer Group’s 'Don’t You Know' this is getting the most rewinds. It’s the breeziest track I’ve ever heard."
Future Islands: Seasons (Waiting On You)
First forming in 2006 while at art school in Greenville, North Carolina, now Baltimore-based Future Islands has been steadily gaining a substantial following with their resonant vocals and distinct synth-pop style. 2014 might be their biggest year yet; the band is signed to the distinguished indie music label 4AD, and their recently released album Singles has landed them a spot on The Late Show with David Letterman and headlining an international tour. This week we caught them performing to a sold-out crowd at NYC's Webster Hall. Check out "Seasons (Waiting On You)" if you haven't already.
DJ Harvey: Wildest Dreams
A drummer during the heyday of London's punk scene, Harvey Bassett soon switched gears and became a household name among late-night club-goers, in part due to a residency at the iconic Ministry of Sound. DJ Harvey has always walked on the wild side and maintained status as a hedonistic music maestro, playing up his impeccable taste in a range of styles. Now the legend is releasing an unofficial homage to his adopted town of LA in Wildest Dreams, a forthcoming album that channels the type of vibe found on the Sunset Strip in the '60s and '70s. Listen to "Last Ride" for a glimpse at the full LP (out next month), which is available for pre-order from Rough Trade.
ListenUp is a Cool Hunting series published every Sunday that takes a deeper look at the music we tweeted throughout the week. Often we'll include a musician or notable fan's personal favorite in a song or album dubbed #PrivateJam.