In collaboration with @Illeniummusic, @CallMeKarizma’s “God Damnit” becomes an empowering dance anthem

ILLENIUM with CALL ME KARIZMA, “God Damnit”

Let’s go back to March, when I first wrote about “God Damnit” as originally released by Minnesota rapper Call Me Karizma and called it one of ‘Riz’s finest songs to date, albeit short at only 2:14, about why you are good enough for not only love from oneself but from others as well.  Flash forward not quite six months and ‘Riz gets word that none other than Illenium is dropping it at the Red Rocks festival, one of his biggest shows.  To the surprise of fans, exit song from social media, but then “God Damnit” reappears as an official major label collaboration.  It’s one of the most amazing things I’ve seen happen in music in 2018, and both Illenium and ‘Riz are now front and centre together as faces for anxiety in young people through this song, and both will benefit from it immensely.  Illenium’s synth-sparkled production  indeed makes “God Damnit” the anthem that it should be, but no one could have expected this.  Everything about this collaboration – now at a 3:35 length – is so right that you should not only add it to your Spotify playlists but pick it up at your favourite online music store.

Published in: on November 10, 2018 at 11:21 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Trust” is a compelling danceable confessional from hip hop performer @PrinceFox

PRINCE FOX, “Trust”

It’s dark and funky but Prince Fox has a winner with “Trust”.  Now based in L.A., the hip hop performer lays out a confessional for you all to soak in and enjoy.  With its beat-filled backdrop, the song bridges both hip hop and dance music nicely.  Its effects seem rather simple but work in their favour within the context of the song.  It doesn’t hold anything back when Prince Fox puts forward without a solution that the protagonist is unable to trust anyone and himself.  So what would you do?  “Trust” pushes the envelope while you groove away to the rhythm.

Published in: on November 10, 2018 at 11:21 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Meet Baltimore’s @BretSears with streetwise pop/hip hop of “Break The Rules”

BRET SEARS, “Break The Rules”

Baltimore’s Bret Sears is branching out from his dance/pop group project Casual Encounter, which I wrote about last December, to tackle fresh streetwise pop/hip hop with “Break The Rules”.  It’s definitely got a polished pop side but with some grittiness that could attract fans of  Justin Timberlake, Jesse McCartney, Logic, and G-Eazy.  While “Break The Rules” isn’t going challenge any boundaries, it’s got an undeniable hook which is when the vocal is at its strongest.  The melody has raw qualities about it that sound like throwbacks to 90’s NWA/Ice-T/2Pac releases which you generally won’t find in a pop-oriented record.  I’m definitely looking forward to seeing what’s next for Bret in this new undertaking.

Published in: on October 13, 2018 at 9:32 pm  Leave a Comment  
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#BILLCSTop30 #545 – October 1/18

And the new music keeps on coming, making for what’s turning out to be a faster moving chart in years.  Very few songs this year have attained the maximum chart run of 10 appearances (20 weeks) – only 14, including this chart’s “Pink Lemonade” by James Bay, but they will be joined next chart by The Him and Parson James’ “Broken Love”.

The Top 10

  • “Everybody Needs A Kiss” by the dynamic team of Benny Benassi and Sofi Tukker is snug at #1 for a second appearance, but it’s being challenged by several songs below vying to take its place in two weeks.  I’m honestly surprised this one hasn’t been much bigger at dance clubs!

  • Tony Moran and Jason Walker have their best chart showing yet as the Victor Dinaire/Bissen remix of “I’m In Love With You” climbs to #2.

  • The gorgeous melody and riveting beats of “Tim” by Arty allow the lovely tribute to Avicii to rise 7-3.

  • The prolific Philadelphia duo N i G H T S move up 9-6 with “Eyes” (above), but have released yet another single, their 4th since “Eyes”, called “Paradise” (below).

  • The one to watch on the chart is the fastest riser, perfectly timed for Hallowe’en, “Phantom Of The Dance Floor” by Kiesza featuring Quebec opera singer Philippe Sly.  Everyone in the video above is having a blast.  We so needed this campy injection of fun right now 🙂
  • Another one to watch is “Verona”, featuring compelling vocals, both solo and together, by Australia’s Peter Wilson and England’s Sean Smith.  It climbs 15-9, becoming Sean’s second trip to the Top 10 after last year’s “Magic” (#7).
  • And it’s a first time visit to the Top 10 for L.A. producer Caden Jester with “Vacant Love”, up 11-10, and featuring the voice of Blake Rose.

Movin’ On Up

  • These past few weeks have seen the arrival of the video for “All For You”, the third single from Palo Santo by Years & Years, and the song climbs 14-12.  I look forward to seeing Olly, Mikey, and Emre for the third time on Friday October 5 in Toronto at The Phoenix!!
  • The Netherlands-based Emerati production duo Revelries moves up 18-14 with their original “Infinitum”, featuring Australia’s Beamish Boys on vocals.  

  • It recently got to #1 on Billboard’s Dance Club Play chart – “Rise” by Jonas Blue featuring You Tube stars Jack & Jack, rises 19-15.

  • Florida’s PLS&TY has his first original on the chart, and in its Morgan Page remix, “Down For Me” is definitely tailored for clubs, climbing 28-21.
  • The delightful short story of “Voice Mails” by L.A.-based producer Kooky, is no flash in the pan, moving up 30-23.

Three Debuts

  • The Highest Debut of the week belongs to acclaimed, Grammy-nominated Seattle duo Odesza with their first appearance with the huge sounds of “Loyal” at #24.  It’s a fan favourite that Odesza has had in their set for some time now.  However they’ve replaced a Marvin Gaye sample with a soulful, vibrant female vocal – not sure if it’s a sample or an original recording.  After a lot of thinking, I thought it might have been an excerpt from Cheryl Lynn’s 1979 disco smash “Star Love” but alas it’s not!  Guesses, anyone?
  • Next up is established Nova Scotia production duo Botnek with “Days Of Disco” at #25, which also sounds like it uses a sample of the telephone ringing right out of disco days’ “Doctor’s Orders” by Carol Douglas, but that doesn’t appear to be so.  In any case the song is insanely catchy and will liven up any dance club set!

  • The third and final debut belongs to The Knocks, who released their second full album this past week, New York Narcotic.  Equally as entertaining as their 2016 debut 55, the song from Narcotic that bows on the chart is “Goodbyes” featuring none other than Method Man – he’s the second rap voice, the first is of course The Knocks’ own Mr. JPatt!  “Goodbyes” is The Knocks’ 6th chart appearance. They’ve been to #1 before with 2015’s “Kiss The Sky” featuring Wyclef Jean.

View the full BILLCS Top 30 right here!  Click on the hyperlink on the song titles to hear the songs or watch the videos!

Listen to the BILLCS Top 30 Songs on Spotify! Click on this link to take you there, and follow me on Spotify: BILLCS Top 30 Songs

Check out and ‘like’ the BILLCS Music Projects Facebook page 🙂

 

Canada’s own @Robotaki follows up his Science EP with the electro hip hop/soul of “Brooklyn ’95” with Mike Clay @alldayjam

ROBOTAKI and MIKE CLAY, “Brooklyn ’95”

After the release of his diverse and dynamic EP Science, Montreal-based producer Robotaki is back with new music to support his upcoming tour with “Brooklyn ’95”.  It’s an easy-going slice of electronic hip hop/soul featuring an ultra-friendly vocal by Mike Clay.  “Brooklyn ’95” is totally on point about where it wants to transport you – to the hip hop/soul of the 90’s with similarly relaxed vibes coming from the likes of Arrested Development, Montell Jordan, Aaliyah, Brandy, and others of that era.  When you want to remember and share all of those memories of good times, then “Brooklyn ’95” is the companion song for you.  Robotaki keeps that fluid rhythm going, only pausing briefly in spots to bridge the gentle message of the song.  

Published in: on August 14, 2018 at 10:21 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Young NYC-based producer @iamCRVEU spices up “Favorite Color Is Blue” by @DeLongmusic and @KFlay for clubs

ROBERT DELONG and K.FLAY, “Favorite Color Is Blue” (CRVE U remix)

You can hear the influences of Green Day, Linkin Park and others in “Favorite Color Is Blue” by L.A.’s Robert DeLong with a cool feature by hip hop rocker K.Flay, now available in a variety of remixes to maximize its appeal for dance clubs and electronic music lovers.  Teenage producer CRVE U definitely bridges the alt.rock style with a flurry of busy synths that make the song sound even better when cranked up loud.  The mix almost has a tribal feel at time, but it seamlessly winds its way back to Robert and K.Flay’s infectious collaboration and chorus which are what make the song so memorable in the first place.  CRVE U has always opted for unconventional mixes, and “Favorite Color Is Blue” is yet another reason for you to keep an eye on his ongoing progress.

Published in: on August 10, 2018 at 2:41 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Complicated” by newcomer #Benjmn marries clever rhythms and vocal with passionate, real-life words

BENJMN, “Complicated”

While newcomer 22 year old R&B/hip hop/electronic artist Benjmn has his face out there in the artwork of his single “Complicated”, he keeps a discreet social media profile, lending a bit of mystery to this genre for the first time since say The Weeknd arrived.  While he’s done some remixing already for King Arthur and Loud Luxury, “Complicated” is going to attract attention from fans of Kanye West, Bryson Tiller, and in particular Kid Cudi, whose voice has a similar tone.  It puts his own troubles with anxiety right out there in simple, memorable terms:  Demons they come out at night / I’m losing control / The worst kinda ride / I hate how it goes.  Anyone can relate even though it paints a bleaker picture than your straight-forward everyday problem.  So not only does Benjmn have the voice and the lyrical power and passion, he has the ability to put a compelling rhythm and a variety of sounds underneath, and out of it all I can hear influences perhaps more from gritty 80’s R&B than anything else.  Remember the name though – Benjmn’s EP will be dropping soon.

Published in: on August 1, 2018 at 11:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Peace Out” by NYC-based @Squiredmusic confidently meshes electronic dance with hip hop

SQUIRED, “Peace Out”

For a debut single, “Peace Out” by NYC-based act Squired is one powerful, confident piece of business!  21 year old New Jersey native Sean Squires, previously one half of Opvs, packs a wallop with his blend of electronic dance and hip hop styles.  There’s a continuous hard-edged groove that barely lets up led by a smoking vocal.  Layers of synths are everywhere but I’m also detecting a lot of rock influences in the mix which provide its anthemic qualities.  Squired takes his inspiration from artists like Flume and R.L. Grime and then runs wild with it.  “Peace Out” arrives and commands instant attention, making Squired someone to put all ears on for the rest of 2018.  You can bookend “Peace Out” with another similar slice of electro hip hop like Bobby Nourmand’s “D E E P in NY” and add it to your favourite dance playlist using the Spotify link above.

Published in: on July 2, 2018 at 9:12 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Mexico” by @byOllieJoseph is positive hip hop with an easy-going groove

OLLIE JOSEPH, “Mexico”

Born in Japan, raised in Michigan, and now based out of L.A., rapper/songwriter/emcee Ollie Joseph has been immersed in a lot of musical styles.  It’s not surprising then that his latest single “Mexico” is actually a throwback to some older school, feel-good, R&B-flavoured hip hop.  Its easy-going groove will have you visualizing a drive down the pacific to your new destination for a great time.  By no means is “Mexico” out to floor you with a new or intriguing sound, but it will win you over with a friendly vibe to go along with its escapist lyrics.  Those who enjoy the destination may take to the song particularly well.  Ollie Joseph is someone to listen for who is bucking the current hip hop trends in favour of something familiar that still sounds fresh.

Published in: on June 16, 2018 at 9:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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We’re all “Villains” in lust according to the ‘bedroom bass’ hip hop of @SeanTurkmusic

SEAN TURK, “Villains” (free DL)

NYC’s Sean Turk is on a roll with his original hip hop, gradually becoming a hybrid with his trademark bedroom bass house style, with songs like his latest, “Villains”.  No need to go into many details about the typically lusty song itself, when a fresh kind of balance is achieved. Sean focuses more on a tidier production and less emphasis on uber-fly lyrics, making “Villains” is a pleasant progression for those who enjoy soulful, house-inspired hip hop with plenty of bounce.  Download it for free at the link above while it’s still available.

Published in: on May 21, 2018 at 7:15 pm  Leave a Comment  
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